86: The Streak

86: The Streak

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: Country Music

The Streak

Story by Ray Stevens

Song written by Ray Stevens

Recorded by Ray Stevens

I was on a plane flying from L.A. to Nashville. Back in those days, they used to carry several of the weekly magazines on board, like Time or Newsweek. Now they have their own magazines. And in the back, they always had these little news blurbs about events across the country. One of the blurbs was about a college student in California who took off his clothes and ran through a crowd and they called it “streaking.” I thought, “Now there’s an idea,” so I started making some notes.

When I got home, all of the news broadcasts were talking about streaking, so I thought I’d better finish the song, so we could get in the studio and cut it. I write a lot of comedy songs. When I sit down to write, I usually get the title or concept in mind first and then, of course, that dictates whether the song is going to be funny or serious. I try to have the tempo and the melodic structure reflect the silliness or the seriousness of the song. You can’t put a slow, dragging, love-song melody to a comedy song like this. And of course this had to be a funny song.

By the time I got my record released, there were already fifteen other streaking records out. I think mine was one of the ones that made it, though, because I had a little more time to think about it and polish the song. Most of the others were just hastily thrown together, and didn’t really have any other meaning to them other than just trying to cash in on a fad.

Later, when videos became more popular, we did a video for the song and put it in a package called Comedy Video Classics and it sold something like four million copies.

The Streak

(Reporter):

Hello, everybody, this is your action news reporter with all

the news that is news across the nation, on the scene at the

supermarket. There seems to have been some disturbance here.

Pardon me, sir, did you see what happened?

(Witness):

Yeah, I did. I’s standin’ over there by the tomaters, and here he

come, running through the pole beans, through the fruits and

vegetables, nekkid as a jay bird. And I hollered over t’ Ethel, I

said, “Don’t look, Ethel!” But it’s too late, she’d already been

incensed.

(Chorus)

Here he comes, look at that, look at that

There he goes, look at that, look at that

And he ain’t wearin’ no clothes

Oh, yes, they call him the Streak

Look at that, look at that

Fastest thing on two feet

Look at that, look at that

He’s just as proud as he can be

Of his anatomy

He goin’ give us a peek

Oh, yes, they call him the Streak

Look at that, look at that

He likes to show off his physique

Look at that, look at that

If there’s an audience to be found

He’ll be streakin’ around

Invitin’ public critique

(Reporter):

This is your action news reporter once again, and we’re here at

the gas station. Pardon me, sir, did you see what happened?

(Witness):

Yeah, I did. I’s just in here gettin my car checked, he just

appeared out of the traffic. Come streakin’ around the grease

rack there, didn’t have nothin’ on but a smile. I looked in there,

and Ethel was getting her a cold drink. I hollered, “Don’t look,

Ethel!” But it was too late. She’d already been mooned. Flashed

her right there in front of the shock absorbers.

(Chorus)

He ain’t crude, look at that, look at that

He ain’t lewd, look at that, look at that

He’s just in the mood to run in the nude

Oh, yes, they call him the Streak

Look at that, look at that

He likes to turn the other cheek

Look at that, look at that

He’s always makin’ the news

Wearin’ just his tennis shoes

Guess you could call him unique

(Reporter):

Once again, your action news reporter in the booth at the gym,

covering the disturbance at the basketball playoff. Pardon me,

sir, did you see what happened?

(Witness):

Yeah, I did. Half time, I’s just goin’ down there to get Ethel a

snow cone. And here he come, right out of the cheap seats,

dribbling, right down the middle of the court. Didn’t have on

nothing but his PF’s. Made a hook shot and got out through

the concessions stand. I hollered up at Ethel, I said, “Don’t

look, Ethel!” But it was too late. She’d already got a free shot.

Grandstandin’, right there in front of the home team.

(Chorus) (Witness):

Oh, yes, they call him the Streak Here he comes again.

Look at that, look at that Who’s that with him?

The fastest thing on two feet (voice: “Ethel? Is that you, Ethel?”)

Look at that, look at that (voice: “What do you think you’re doin’?”)

He’s just as proud as he can be (voice: “You git your clothes on”)

Of his anatomy

He’s gonna give us a peek

Oh, yes, they call him the Streak (voice: “Ethel! Where you goin’?”)

Look at that, look at that (voice: “Ethel, you shameless hussy”)

He likes to show off his physique (voice: “Say it isn’t so”)

Look at that, look at that (voice: “Ethel! Ethelllllll!!!”)

If there’s an audience to be found

He’ll be streakin’ around

Invitin’ public critique

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