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Greencastle Blues



There was a time when I was handsome
There was a time when I had money to burn
There was a time when where I landed
Was the least of my
Was the least of my concerns
But it hurts to lean back in these handcuffs
Like nine kinds of shame turned to rage
As a younger man I might have put up a fight
But I feel like such a fool at my age

Some of this trouble just finds me
No matter where I turn
How do you know when it's too late
How do you know when it's too late
How do you know when it's too late to learn

You know the number one symptom of heart disease
The number one symptom of heart disease is sudden death
It's like time stands still forever until it starts shaking around on you
Shaking around like some crazy old hooker on meth
And you know me I can't take no preaching
Not on Sunday or no other day
But I feel like I oughta be praying or something
And I have no idea what to say

Some of this trouble just finds me
Most of this trouble I earn
How do you know when it's too late
How do you know when it's too late
How do you know when it's too late to learn

I've learned nothing out here on this highway
But I have been passed by
And I have passed my more than my share of cars
And I do remember my younger days
When I was so certain that driving even faster
Was gonna get me far
So there's nothing left for me to learn here
Just this half full or half empty cup
Less than an ounce of possession man
I could do that kind of time standing up

Most of this trouble just finds me
No matter where I turn
How do you know when it's too late
How do you know when it's too late
How do you know when it's too late to learn

You ever have one of those times in life where your driving down the highway
Doing nothing wrong. Listening to the radio loud, seat belt fastened, and
obeying the speed limit when Up ahead on the highway you see the lights
atop a highway Patrol car tucked Behind some highway bushes and before you
can stop to think that you have done nothing wrong, you stab your foot down
hard on the break for no real reason other than your brain deciding it
needed to do something physical to aknowledge to itself that it had seen
something. And you know that had you not made that mistake you would have
passed by the officer unnoticed But now, because you did make that mistake
he thinks you might have a tied up kid in your car
and so he decides to tail you .

this is what happened to elvis and I not long ago in a small town
called greencastle Indiana.

Did I mention that we were pulling a joint back and forth at the time.

Well I should have because it plays a big factor in the story later on.

So heres what happens

elvis shoves whats left of the stash in the side gulley to his left, lights
a cig,

Opens the window, I spray the spray shit and we pull over.

“Do you know why I pulled you over?’ He asked.

“cuz im young and im black and my hats hung low
Do I look like a mind reader…I don’t know” Ok we didn’t say that. Hova

We said
‘No’ .

He said
‘Well you boys seem to be a bit nervous to me up to no good.”

“not at all” we answered (honestly in my opinion)

so he says
“do you boys have drugs on your person?”

“no” we said, honestly again.

The officer then asks elvis to step out of car which he does.
From the passenger side I can hear him questioning elvis by asking him every
possible leading question he could without being direct. I do not know why
this was his tact.

“are you a drug smuggler?”

"have you been drinking?”
“can I search your car?”
Even that last one you can answer truthfully by saying yes
your still not consenting to a search
your just ag-naw-ledging that this man is indeed capable of searching a car.
As this is happening, more police cars show up to circle our car.
He questions elvis for about five or more minutes and gets nothing but the
And yet still gets nothing to pin on us cuz he keeps asking the wrong
Finally he comes over to me and says
“sir, are there drugs in this car”
“yes” I said.
“what kind?”
:”in the gulley”
“why did you lie to me before” he said
“I didn’t” I said.
“you didn’t tell me you had drugs in your car” he said
“ you didn’t ask” I said.

From there it was on to being arrested
I wasn’t worried because
While we had at that point never been arrested for possession of marijuana
we had been driving up and down the road for twenty years smoking it
and planning
For an event just such as this.
So needless to say we were ready.
We had a plan.
In fact we
didn’t just have one plan we had two.
Plan A and plan B.
now listen man......…
I cant tell you the specifics of either plan A or B
because we don’t want other people
using them to the point that the law catches on
but I can and will tell you this
plan A didn’t work
and neither did plan B

So im sitting in this little jail in greencastle Indiana
but as i nearly mentioned before
Ive been a legal dissenter in many ways for many years.
so I knew the drill and was not afraid of it.
(plus i had a pretty good buzz)

in jail, before they put people in the cell
they line them up on a bench with others to be printed processed and

as I was sitting on the small bench, the oldest guy in the room by ten or
more years,
(Older than the cons and the cops)
the shame was setting in.
And by that I mean the shame of getting caught at my age.
not the shame of smoking pot at my age.

So as the shame is settling in
and my broken give a shitter gypsy side is settling in beside it
I hear A faint waft of music coming out of a door from around the corner
and when I hear music I cant help it.
I kick into a life long game of "name that tune" that Ive had going with
myself for years and I new i new this tune
So I leaned in closer to hear… that riff. What is it? I know it.
Then I hear a whisp of the words “helicopters over the house again
Wait a minute I thought.
I know that shit.
That’s me. No shit.
it was my music....but i said nothing
Being a singer, of my stature at least, had never helped me in jail before
and don’t think I hadn’t tried.
It just doesn’t work and sometimes it even makes things worse.
So I just left it.
And sat there taking in where my life was.

By the time I had been processed, photographed and finger printed
My buddy elvis had paid my bail which meant if the judge wasn’t to backed up
I would be out pretty quick.
I had taken the fall for elvis of course.
Its part of plan B.
Id tell you more but I cant.
Both plans are back in the shop

Id say the whole thing took seven or eight hours
And I never left the drunk tank.
It was pretty easy really.
i was never to worried cuz i knew it was less than an ounce of possession
and id even made up a new song in there that ended up on my new record
the excitement plan
its called
greencastle blues

After I was bailed out we headed back on the road to the gig in bloomington
about an hour later down the road
Elvis’s phone rings
And it’s the sheriff of greencastle
Mark frisbie
He says hes been going over some paper work and saw a todd snider
And wanted to know if it was todd snider the singer
Elvis said yes.
The sheriff said hed been listening to me in his office all day
And that if he’d a known I was there
He could have got me off
I told him I was straight and married
He said he meant he could of got me off on the charges
As in helped me get away with it
Damn. I shoulda said something.
Oh well.
Live and don’t learn.

That night in Bloomington sheriff frisbie came to the show with his wife and
He brought some other cops too.
They told me that the guy who
got us was the local
Barney fife and that had I gotten any other cop I would’ve probably not been
pulled over and defiantly would not have been arrested for such a small
amount of dope.

The frizz….who is now in my brother for life also told me that the kid
who busted me
Was the son of the sheriff before the frizz
and that it was an ugly fued.
He said he wished he could fire the guy but couldn’t under the

Eventually this kid and his ex sherriff of a dad figured out that the frizz
had spent about seven grand of the cities money taking his family to mexico…
a move I still consider wise to this day
they came down hard on frizz though and he had to spend two months in jail
not a prison … a jail…..and a fairly white collar one at that .

a place where if asked on a game show
would you spend two months here in exchange for a seven thousand dollar
family vacation to mexico.
Id say
Oh fuck yeah. No problem.

and now that i think about i t
that day as elvis and i were pulling that joint
if he'd have said
would you trade eight hours in jail for this buzz were catching
id a said oh fuck yeah. no problem.