Sunday, May 22, 2016

I smell a ghost smell from the ground

A Flint-y sort of song for your enjoyment:

Well, I walked past just yesterday
And I couldn't bare that new mall no more
I can't expect you all to see it my way
But you may not know what was there before
And I want them to put back my old corner store
Well, I walked past just like I say
And I felt this hurt that would not go home
I can't expect that you're gonna see it my way
But you may not know the trees I've known
And I want them to put back my old corner store
I know it costs more money to shop there
But this was love, this was love
I know you had to pay more money
I'll pay money, I'll pay more
I don't care what the mall has got
I want back that corner store
And what did I feel when I walked by slow?
Sorrow, sorrow, all around
Why I would feel sorrow I now know
I smell a ghost smell from the ground
That old wooden smell from the old corner store
Bam a nib a nib a nib way, oh
Bam a nib a nib a way, oh, web, oh
Bam a nib a nib a no, corner store, corner store
Bam a nib a nib a nib way oh
Bam a nib a nib a way oh web oh
Bam a nib a nib a no Corner store Corner store
I walked past one final time
And I wished the worst on the place I shop
Now I can't expect everyone to feel like I am
But I spot a trend that has got to stop
And I want them to put back that old corner store


  1. Hey Gordie,
    I was inspired by that picture of you peaking out mischievously from behind your family when you were a kid and wrote a poem yesterday. I didn't know what to do with it and am not sure if it is even very good, but I thought you and the rest of the readers might like it. (I probably should have worked your name into it somewhere!)

    Flint Kids

    First time you see one, they won’t look like much.
    Ain’t got much money, power, and such.
    But, when it comes to workin’ till you can’t stand, nobody does it like a Flint kid can.
    Smart as a whip, and brave as hell.
    Ain’t gonna quit until they ring the bell.
    Mark Farner is one.
    Terry Crews is, too.
    Clarissa Shields will leave you black and blue.
    From Billy Durant, the list goes on and on.
    The athletes alone would just take way too long.
    On nine-eleven we had to scramble the jets, ‘cause the boys in charge didn’t get the threats.
    But, when no one else seemed to understand, Todd Beamer knew he had to make his stand.
    He didn’t cower, didn’t think of the toll. Just took a vote and then said, “Let’s roll.”
    ‘Cause when it comes to makin’ a plan, nobody does it like a Flint kid can.
    So, they’ll drink the lead and go play in the sand.
    They all know the sting of the back of a hand.
    But, when they’re grown, they’ll be in demand.
    ‘Cause no one can do the things a Flint kid can.

  2. Wurstsyde WårlørdMay 23, 2016 at 3:56 PM

    Nobody WALKS to the PARTY store in Flint. Not many are nostalgic for Mounirs Drive Thru or Lewis St. Market. Stop N Rob or 7-Eleven or Sunshine are just as good. Besides, 'toids love a bargain. Case in point, the failure of Robinson's Mobile Market.

    Brotha Richman and nem Modern Lovers nerdy smarty pants rock are the anti-thesis of Flint... when I think Flint and beer Whoppers Taste Good's anthem Cheap Beer and it's 19 views on Youtube spring to mind.

    1. Wurstsyde Wårlørd returns? Where you been? And what was Robinson's Mobile Market?

    2. Incarcerated.

      Robinson's Mobile Market was a school bus converted into a rolling party store that plied their trade on the Eastside. They'd pull up to the corner, announce "Robinson's Mobile Market" over the megaphone, and State Streeters would scurry out of their bungalows to purchase overpriced Basic Light 100s and Faygo Red Pop 2 liters.

  3. They are tearing down a lot of malls. They are replacing them with strip centers. There still is a market for specialty stores. Well run Mom and Pop stores can survive, in small towns and low crime areas. It's difficult to find help these days, let alone good help, to cover non bankers hours. Mom and Pop have to do it all, and they are approaching retirement age.


Thanks for commenting. I moderate comments, so it may take a while for your comment to appear. You might enjoy my book about Flint called "Teardown: Memoir of a Vanishing City," a Michigan Notable Book for 2014 and a finalist for the 33rd Annual Northern California Book Award for Creative NonFiction. Filmmaker Michael Moore described Teardown as "a brilliant chronicle of the Mad Maxization of a once-great American city." More information about Teardown is available at