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Chattanooga City Limit Sign

This song is by Johnny Cash and appears on the album The Baron (1981).

I was thumbin' a ride one Saturday mornin'
Outta Nashville totin' my sack
I lent my car to a gal that lived in Chattanooga
And she hadn't never brought it back
She was drinkin' pretty heavy when I let her have it
I hope she knows it was only a loan
Ain't no tellin' what I might have told her back at the time
But that ole car was also my home

About five miles out I was gettin' kinda tired
Sweatin' hard and feelin' kinda weak
I woke up with no cigarettes and nothin' to drink
And I hadn't had a bite to eat
My nerves was so quick I couldn't tell where I was shakin'
Then a set of brakes sang my song
Some fella stuck his head out a '57 Chevy
And hollered hey man come on

I told 'em I was headin' down to Chattanooga
They said hop in we're goin' there too
And the way they took off in a cloud of smoke
I still ain't believin' it was true
They had their windows down and I was sittin' in the back
With my tongue still hung in my throat
He was hittin' just about a hundred and ten
And he said man what you think of this boat

Well there was two semi's a strugglin' up ahead
One tryin' to pass the other
They had the whole road blocked so he passed 'em on the right
And let me tell you somethin' brother
I was so nervous that my teeth was clickin'
There wadn't no way my head could think
Then the one that was sittin' on the passanger side
Turned and said hey man you want somethin' to drink

I just shook my head 'cause I couldn't talk
He said okay and then he said cheers
Them fools was drinkin' whiskey and wine
And chasin' it down with beer
Well I started sweatin' that ol' sticky sweat
And I know I was white as a sheep
Then one turned the radio on wide open
And said hey man check that beat

By the time we reached the top of Monteagle
I thought I heard a rumblin' sound
And then I saw a sign that said fallin' rock
And right there I was floorboard bound
I was rollin' and squirmin' on the ol' floorboard
Too weak to sit or stand
And then the driver said we're doin' a hundred and twenty
Look here man no hands

I got up enough nerve to raise up and look
And by now there couldn't be no surprise
But his hair was blowin' all over my face
And dandruff blowed in both eyes
He never did drive on the right or left
He just kept on ridin' that line
I rubbed my eyes and saw the prettiest thing
The Chattanooga city limit sign

He slowed down and I said
Mister please I'd like to get off right here
He said aw ride on into town with us
We're gonna go down and pick up some more beer
I said please once more and he stopped the car
And then he handed me my sack
Said they'd look for me on the road later on
In case I wanted to catch a ride back

I got out and sat down by the side of the road
Feelin' sick and lookin' mighty pale
I don't remember anything much after that
But next mornin' I woke up in jail
I didn't know anybody in my cell
And didn't wanta ask why was there
But they all kept grinnin' and turnin' their heads
And it was more than my head could bear

So I called the jailer and I asked him to tell me
Why I was there if he'd be so kind
He said for stoppin' the traffic while I was huggin' and kissin'
The Chattanooga city limit sign

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