The Eugene Anthem:
City of Twinkle Van Winkle

a lyrical appreciation of Eugene, Oregon USA
Word & Music by Jerral Sapienza
arrangement by Cindy Zarzycki
(c) 1999 Jerral Sapienza
See a Pic of the Performance :-)     
Or hear jam session (Jerral and Cindy singing at Yama's Cafe Sat Sep 18, 1999)
in 8MHz or 11MHz 11MHz .wav format or 11MHz .mp3 format
  • (in D)
  • Chorus / Refrain

  • (D) Sometimes the weather's gettin' (G) to (D) ya sometimes ya feel you're gonna (A) scream! (D) sometimes the sun is peeking (G) thru -- (D) yeah (D) Either way, (A) it's (D) Eugene!
    There's (G) Saturday Market and the (D) Country Fair with its (A) nudity, craft booths, and (D) mud-caked air (G) political credo of "Laissez-(D) Faire," like we (D) celebrate here in (D)Eugene. Tree-(G) HUGgin' vegan HIPpies in their (D) aging vans with their (A) funky ol' names and "(D) organic plants", (G) Sometimes stoned, some (D) times just en'tranced. like (A) Twinkle Van Winkle (D) Eugene. We got a (G) world class Duck (D) University and a (A) city-wide penchant for (D) Diversity ((G) What's that, you say? (D) "Perversity?"). (A) NAWwwww... it's just . . .(D) Eugene! -- chorus -- (D) Sometimes the weather's gettin' (G) to (D) ya sometimes ya feel you're gonna (A) scream! (D) sometimes the sun is peeking (G) thru -- (D) yeah (D) Either way, (A) it's (D) Eugene! There's a (G) tax-break plan bringing (D) companies here when they (A) whisper sweet promises, (D)"Jobs!", in our ear, the (G) wetlands dry up, or they (D) just disappear, (Where's the (A) wild life to go in (D) Eugene?) We (G) recycle our plastics, our (D) paper, our glass, we (A) walk, or we bike, so we'll save (D) precious gas, it's (G) illegal transporting certain (D) substances past, through (A) nuclear-free (D) Eugene. And the (G) slugs and the snails leave their (D) trails at our feet as they (A) slither all around in their (D) slimy retreat, surely (G) nothing seems quite so (D) tasty to eat as the (A) gardens they munch in (D) Eugene. -- chorus -- (D) Sometimes the weather's gettin' (G) to (D) ya sometimes ya feel you're gonna (A) scream! (D) sometimes the sun is peeking (G) thru -- (D) yeah! (D) Either way, (A) it's (D) Eugene! We've got (G) months of Grey Days when the (D) rain clouds come, (A) Silent, wet people, worn (D) weary and numb. . . (but (G) there's hope still radiatin' outward from some as they (A) waddle around in (D) Eugene!) You'll find (G) anarchists, loggers & (D) skaters these days, (A) Musicians, artists, writers; lesbians, (D) gays, Church & (G) Spirit expressed in all (D) sorts of ways, in our (A) haven, eclectic (D) Eugene. How 'bout (G) Astrology, Channeling, (to (D) set your mind free,) (A) Counseling, Health Foods & (D) Vitamin "T", Full (G) Body Massage, (D) Yoga, Tai Chi (All on a (A) sliding scale for (D) Eugene!?) -- chorus -- (D) Sometimes the weather's gettin' (D) to (D) ya sometimes ya feel you're gonna (A) scream! (D) sometimes the sun is peeking (G) thru -- (D) yeah! (D) Either way, (A) it's (D) Eugene; (D) Either way, (A) it's (D) Eugene!

    = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o
    Notes on the origin of Eugene's City Anthem here . . .
    Picture that scene: early fall 1999, and I am moving to Chicago for a year or two as a requirement for my job. But I surely didn't want to leave Twinkle Van Winkle yet! (I coined the term "Twinkle Van Winkle" several years ago to refer to Eugene because, for its size, it's a place with quite a lot of stuff going on-- sometimes below the surface & on the periphery-- the Twinkle, and yet there's also a large number of people just kind of hanging out here, some still sleeping from way back in the Hippie'esque 1960's. And countless others in Van Winkle mode doing process work around mystical, social, environmental or personal transformation stuff.)

    One friend of mine, when hearing that I was going to move to Chicago summed it up perfectly when he said in shocked amazement, "You're moving to CHICAGO!!? Really? On PURPOSE!!???" I chuckled at that.

    But yes, it was a real deal, and so I had to follow through with it. It was indeed "on purpose", in that I chose my work, which required I be in Chicago for at least a year. So off I went. (I stayed 16 months before giving up and returning to Twinkle Van Winkle mode myself, and like a good true Eugenean, quit my job on "principle" and came back to Eugene with no particular replacement job in mind, and no worries. :-)

    While I was first in Chicago, the people over there didn't at all understand why I wouldn't just jump at the chance to be in The City and couldn't figure out what on earth my attachment would be to a "tiny city where it rained all the time" over on the West Coast. Well, so I decided that before I left Eugene, back in that Fall of 1999, I would take a couple hours (actually took three hours to write the words and music for the song here...) and then write down my appreciation for Eugene in song and verse, and then sing it out, to see see if my friends & cohorts & even strangers on the street would agree with me that my representation was accurate. So, that's where this song came from.

    One of the people who heard it back then and loved it was Cindy Zarcycki, who came in a couple days later to sit down with me, sing it out, too, and get the chordings & song phrasings down more manageably. She and I then went on the streets to get a feeling for how it would play. Just happened that all this took place at a very fortuitous time... during the beautiful Fall in Eugene, the week before our annual City-Wide street party where we poke fun at ourselves as a City, and commune & play for one last hurrah as we prepare to go Van Winkling for the next few months' rainy season... that street party called the (Centennial Bank) Eugene Celebration.

    Since Cindy & I then recorded the song, and I happened the next day to have a tape with me in my pack when I walked by the Chamber of Commerce & Eugene Weekly to find out if anyone else had yet written an official Eugene Anthem, I played it for them, and they all got a kick out of it. Ted Taylor, Editor of the Weekly, asked if they could reprint the lyrics in the Eugene Weekly Celebration Edition which they were working on right there and then. So that's how it happened into the paper so immediately.

    So that's the basic story...

    for specific notes & links & details... The official site for Eugene Celebration pages os at http://WWW.EugeneCelebration.COM for more info on the Celebration. And, regarding where the song was initially published, that was in the Thu September 16th, 1999 issue of Eugene Weekly, current issue of which can be found at http://WWW.EugeneWeekly.COM

    Our improptu performances during the Celebration took place Friday & Saturday evenings downtown Eugene, September 17th and 18th, 1999.

    	Friday:   	Fool's Paradise Coffee House
    	Saturday #1: 	Yama's Cafe
    	Saturday #2:	Rosewater's Deli

    Hmmm: oddly enough... just happened to notice a few days ago in Summer 2001, that ALL THREE of those venues where we sang this song are now closed down! What could THAT mean!!? Probably just coincidence, of course. :-) Or could it mean that we're the kiss of death when it comes to performance venues?

    And there you have the story of how this came to be. Feel free to be in touch if you have other questions about the song or perhaps you would like to perform it sometime in your own venue! :-)

    -Jerral Sapienza
    Orig: 9.20.1999 / Updated: 7.25.2005
    = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o = o
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    And of course, Please:
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