Truth is a Virus. Talk Hard.

In 1990, I gave a speech to the members of the New York State Reading Association. I just found a copy in some papers I was throwing out. It was a good speech, and I ended it with these Concrete Blonde lyrics (originally by Leonard Cohen) from the soundtrack of Pump Up the Volume. My theme was the movie’s theme: Truth is a Virus. Talk Hard.
Everybody knows the dice are loaded.
Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed.
Everybody knows that the war is over.
Everybody knows that the good guys lost.
Everybody knows that the fight is fixed,
the poor stay poor and the rich get rich.
That’s how it goes.
Everybody knows the boat is leaking.
Everybody knows the captain died.
Everybody’s got this broken feeling
like their mama or their dog just died.
Everybody’s hands are in their pockets.
Everybody wants a box of chocolates
or a long-stemmed rose.
Everybody knows.
That’s how it goes.
Everybody knows.
Everybody knows it’s now or never.
Everybody knows it’s me or you.
Everybody knows that you’ll live forever
when you have a line or two.
Everybody knows the deal is rotten:
Old Black Joe’s still pickin’ coton
for your ribbons and bows.
Everybody knows.
Truth is a virus. Talk hard.
Elect John Kerry and change what the citizens of the next decade will know.

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