of, by, and for.

The walls of Deep South Bar are red, though it's hard to tell just what kind of red because the place is a bar, and bars don't make money off bright lighting. If you saw that lady at the other end of the bar under florescents, you might think twice before you bought her a drink. Then again, she might look at you and think twice before accepting.

While the red walls might have made the place look like a cave of doom, the effect is mitigated by the quotes. Most every piece of wall in the bar has a lyric written on it in black or white. Then there is the name of the person who wrote the lyric, followed by the name of the person who put it on the wall, as if hearing a song and writing it on the wall were equivalent with the act of writing the song in the first place.

Of course, looking at all those quotes makes me think what I would write. It's the sort of question that I would agonize over for so long that I never actually wrote anything. I'd want something just a little bit obscure, because I'm a snob. But it would also need to be self-explanatory and pithy and embodying a true and relateable thought. It should stand independent of the song.

It's a neat project, and it underlines a commitment to music that most bars only pretend to have. And also, a commitment to democracy. You can tell that these walls were made by the people.

Maybe my inability to pick a lyric is based on all those people who made such poor choices and then wrote their names on them. Now, I should write a little disclaimer that these opinions are my own, and they count no more or less than the opinions of people who once wrote a crappy song lyric on the wall of a bar. It may well be that the songs are meaningful in some way to the person who chose to put their name underneath them. Or it's possible that I am the one with bad taste.

Now that I've said all that, can we all agree that one should never, ever write a Ratt lyric on a wall? Does the world need to be reminded of the first two lines of "Love is a Battlefield?" And to the person who quoted the Mötley Crüe song "Girls Girls Girls" by writing "GIRLS GIRLS GIRLS," really? The thing that you want to represent you is something that, put in neon, would be a sign at a strip club? And to Christina, who quoted Nickelback with the lyric "You look so much cuter with something in your mouth," okay, that just pisses me off. Christina probably complains that guys don't respect her. Gah.

Aside from the lyrics that were just bad, a lot of them were more like catchphrases. Sure, lots of people like "Imagine," but quoting that you're a dreamer and you're not the only one sorta gives the impression that you're not enough of a John Lennon fan to know any of his other songs. But maybe I just didn't like that example, because I did appreciate the Janis quote, "Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose." It's possible that I am not a dreamer, but I'm probably not the only one.

Good, bad, or trite, this is democracy. This is allowing people to make their own decision and to have it count, no matter their reasoning. And while you'll get some really terrible lyrics on the wall of your bar, no one can say you're not recognizing that rock 'n' roll music is of, by, and for the people.

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