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Bruce Springsteen – Straight Time Lyrics 5 years ago
@[Kedzie:7731] Once again there are embedded slashes in my post. It apparently happens every time you type a contraction.

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Bruce Springsteen – Straight Time Lyrics 5 years ago
I agree that the smell he can't get off his hands is from the rendering plant. But in a larger context it's also the smell of his sin, and thus it's relevant to all of us. We all do straight time every day. Yours might be your job, a cranky spouse, or maybe you have a kid with a severe learning disability or physical deformity and he/she requires all of your extra time and energy, leaving you sapped and emotionally drained. Whatever it is for you, chances are you're working hard to live the straight life, but coming home some nights wanting to bust loose. That's the brilliance of this song. You don't have to be an ex-con to feel Charlie's frustrations with good old boring everyday life.I agree that the foreign lands are simply the places that he visits in his dreams; places far more interesting than his mundane life. (Could be Vietnam or Iraq, too, who knows). I also agree that he has not (yet) committed any new crimes. But he's getting close. Will Mary and the babies keep him from tripping over that thin line? My guess is NO.

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Bruce Springsteen – Highway 29 Lyrics 5 years ago
@[Kedzie:7730] No idea why all those slashes are embedded in my post. Perhaps the site thought that I was quoting lines of lyric?

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Bruce Springsteen – Highway 29 Lyrics 5 years ago
Another great example of Bruce's ability to write film noir in the context of a 3 minute song; most novelists and script writers would sell their soul for Springsteen's innate storytelling skills,

Love how the first stanza uses four instances of the word "slip." It's a smart way to show the character's rational decision making process slowly "slipping" away. But he doesn't overdo it. For example, when she gives him her number he doesn't slip it in his pocket, he "puts" it there. As usual, Bruce knows when enough is enough.

I take the song at face value. The girl is real, so is the bank robbery. After getting away he sleeps without dreaming, wakes up and they head for Mexico.

But like another reader suggested, a roadblock forces him into the ditch. She's messed up; not dead, but in shock. He's in bad shape too; drifting in and and out of consciousness. That explains his feeling at the end that he starts running and ends up flying. Maybe he really did run? Just as likely he was lying in the road only dreaming that he was on his feet.

I like how this song follows Straight Time on the album. In Straight Time the guy has "a cold mind to go tripping across that thin line." In Hwy 29 he actually does it. They have fun for a while, but ultimately his choices catch up with him.

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