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Mr. Bad Example (song)

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"Mr. Bad Example" is a song composed by Warren Zevon and Jorge Calderón, and was the title track for the album of the same name.

About the Song Edit

The song tells the story of a nameless con-man and thief, sung to a polka. During the events of the song, he successfully steals from a church, his father's carpet store, and even a prostitute he hired. He also has a brief stint as a lawyer, works in hair replacement, and successfully tricks aboriginals he had hired to mine for opal. The song ends with the man retiring from his dirty deals, and asking that when you meet him in the next life you wake him up for meals.

Song Lyrics Edit

Note: the text of this song's lyrics is not under the same copyright license as the wiki's encyclopedic text, it is used under fair use/dealing.

I started as an alter boy, working at the church

Learning all my holy moves, doing some research

Which led me to a cash box, labelled "Children's Fund"

I'd leave the change, and tuck the bills inside my cummerbund


I got a part-time job at my father's carpet store

Laying tackless stripping, and housewives by the score

I loaded up their furniture, and took it to Spokane

And auctioned off every last naugahyde divan


I'm very well acquainted with the seven deadly sins

I keep a busy schedule trying to fit them in

I'm proud to be a glutton, and I don't have time for sloth

I'm greedy, and I'm angry, and I don't care who I cross


I'm Mr. Bad Example, intruder in the dirt

I like to have a good time, and I don't care who gets hurt

I'm Mr. Bad Example, take a look at me

I'll live to be a hundred, and go down in infamy


Of course I went to law school and took a law degree

And counselled all my clients to plead insanity

Then worked in hair replacement, swindling the bald

Where very few are chosen, and fewer still are called


Then on to Monte Carlo to play chemin de fer

I threw away the fortune I made transplanting hair

I put my last few francs down on a prostitute

Who took me up to her room to perform the flag salute


Whereupon I stole her passport and her wig

And headed for the airport and the midnight flight, you dig?

And fourteen hours later I was down in Adelaide

Looking through the want ads sipping Fosters in the shade


I opened up an agency somewhere down the line

To hire aboriginals to work the opal mines

But I attached their wages and took a whopping cut

And whisked away their workman's comp and pauperized the lot


I'm Mr. Bad Example, intruder in the dirt

I like to have a good time, and I don't care who gets hurt

I'm Mr. Bad Example, take a look at me

I'll live to be a hundred and go down in infamy


I bought a first class ticket on Malaysian Air

And landed in Sri Lanka none the worse for wear

I'm thinking of retiring from all my dirty deals

I'll see you in the next life, wake me up for meals

See Also Edit


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