© 2017 by Kevin McGee. Created with Wix.com

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Cards & Women

This happened when I watched The Gambler (1974) with a guitar beside me. It's not massively faithful to the film, but Carmine keeps his name, and the mother is there. I made the party a Christmas dinner. It felt more domestic, and made the mother/son betrayal keener. It also puts Christ in the narrator's mind, and nudges him towards the two JCs in the final verse. (James Caan plays the gambler, so the initials get a good workout.) 

I like that it changes key on the very last chord. 

A babe Ruth baseball card will sell for anything from $50 to $500,000. 

I took a ride with Carmine

He didn't mean me any harm

It's just the working man's condition

And his working man's condition was

He had to break my arm

'Cause cards and women keep doing

What cards and women do

Sometimes you're the pocket ace

Sometimes you're the two

My mother stood over the turkey

She drank a health to the general joy

I'll tell you what I'd enjoy, mother

It's a check in the mid five figures

Made out to your blue-eyed boy

 

But cards and your mother keep doing

What cards and women do

Sometimes you're the pocket ace

Sometimes you're the two

 

Of course, I had to steal her bracelets

And her father's Subaru

My brother spends his money on baseball cards

He's got drawer after drawer of baseball cards

He won't miss a Babe Ruth or two

 

I stole handguns, prams and bowling balls

I stole Armani and J Crew

I would have stole Jesus Christ if he wasn't nailed down

But I never once stole from you

 

But cards and gamblers keep doing

What cards and gamblers do

Sometimes you're the pocket ace

And sometimes you're the two