Town Called Malice, by Paul Weller

I know it might sound weird to say I identify with this song.. since it brings to mind (for me anyway,) images of a fifties era suburb, forgotten by time, where all the prosperity has long since drained away and is full of people simply waiting to die.

But you see.. that's how I see my own neighborhood.

I live in a part of Sacramento with a very bad reputation for gang violence and Welfare cheats. At one time... there was a family living next door to me with thirteen people all living in three rooms. Many of my neighbors speak different languages, and recently, there was a collection held to send the dead body of a young man killed in a drive by back to Mexico so he could be burried with his family.

You see..

In my eyes..

I *live* in the Town Called Malice.

Sometimes I fear I'll never escape.

There are stories of prostitutes that come out at night on my street corner... and the sad thing is, I'd believe it if more traffic passed by.

Over thirty years ago, when my father and his mother bought our house, this was a *nice* area. Neighbors were friendly and there was a common bond.

Nowadays, I try to avoid eye contact with anyone I might accidentally see on the walk from my front dooor to the car...


Better stop dreaming of the quiet life -

cos it's the one we'll never know

And quit running for that runaway bus -

cos those rosey days are few

And - stop apologising for the things you've never done,

Cos time is short and life is cruel -

but it's up to us to change

This town called malice.

Rows and rows of disused milk floats

stand dying in the dairy yard

And a hundred lonely housewives clutch empty milk

bottles to their hearts

Hanging out their old love letters on the line to dry

It's enough to make you stop believing when tears come

fast and furious

In a town called malice.

Struggle after struggle - year after year

The atmosphere's a fine blend of ice -

I'm almost stone cold dead

In a town called malice.

A whole street's belief in Sunday's roast beef

gets dashed against the Co-op

To either cut down on beer or the kids new gear

It's a big decision in a town called malice.

The ghost of a steam train - echoes down my track

It's at the moment bound for nowhere -

just going round and round

Playground kids and creaking swings -

lost laughter in the breeze

I could go on for hours and I probably will -

but I'd sooner put some joy back

In this town called malice.