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Song Parodies -> "In Mendota"

Original Song Title:

"In the Ghetto"

Original Performer:

Elvis Presley

Parody Song Title:

"In Mendota"

Parody Written by:

Robert D. Arndt Jr.

The Lyrics

Inspired by AFW and with an article from my newspaper, the Sacramento Bee, I present the once prosperous town of Mendota, Ca. that used to be the "Cantaloupe Center of the World" in the 1940s. Due to loss of agriculture and with unemployment at almost 40% mixed with 50% of the population living in poverty... Mendota is going under. It lost gas pumps in the 1980s due to increased regulation, fresh meat and milk in the '90s, and it's last major store- Westland Grocery just shut it's doors. The town seems deserted, is littered with trash, and drunken men routinely urinate in the streets, even in broad daylight. There's a sense of total hopelessness in Mendota. No Govt. help ever arrived and the City Council just pulled the plug. People barely survive due to dollar stores for shopping- most everything else is closed for good. The owner of Westland Grocery, Joseph Riofrio, just gave up after extending credit up to $600 per person and trying to keep his family business alive by offering various services like postal and a payment center for bills. But the people couldn't pay back their debts and the only thing selling was beer. That's when he threw in the towel and closed forever. Mendota is a dying town...
Closing Westside
“Detroit of California” is mournin’
And so fades away another store
In Mendota
Unemployment high
downward spiral for community needs
grocery store just couldn’t succeed
In Mendota

People need a helping hand (but)
Agriculture not in demand
“Cantaloupe Center of the World” has passed away
Gone is the prosperity,
struggle just for basic needs,
town is simply left for dead
and starts to fade away

The closure hurts
and the town of 11,000 now knows
“nothing ever gets better”- no hope
In Mendota

Some valid concerns:
“ghost town” littered with garbage in sight
town has lost its appeal
drunks piss in broad daylight
In Mendota

It’s a hopeless situation
no help coming their way
The place is shunned, loss of farms,
folks are stunned, economy’s harmed
As the town dies

The small City Council never had a plan
as their small businesses close across their land
In Mendota

As the small town dies,
“Detroit of California” is mournin’ ,
loss of their last major grocery store
In Mendota

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Voting Results

Pacing: 5.0
How Funny: 5.0
Overall Rating: 5.0

Total Votes: 11

Voting Breakdown

The following represent how many people voted for each category.

    Pacing How Funny Overall Rating
 1   0
 2   0
 3   0
 4   0
 5   11

User Comments

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Patrick - September 24, 2012 - Report this comment
Just looked up Mendota's web site. Lots of talk about parks, recreation, schools, theater. Noticed how crude the lettering was on the hanger at the airport. Also that no fuel service is available. You can land there any time you like, but you can never leave.
Rob Arndt - September 24, 2012 - Report this comment
Yeah, I had to look it up myself and I live in Cali!!! The Bee pics were sad. One was of the owner of Westland inside his grocery store which was closed hanging his head down and another of a man drinking beer on a sidewalk in front of a closed store and a dog lying in the heat. Reminded me of the Great Depression :(
AFW - September 24, 2012 - Report this comment
Sounds like another sad situation...well done
Rob Arndt - September 24, 2012 - Report this comment
There are places like that all over the US!!!
Susanna Viljanen - September 25, 2012 - Report this comment
That is a truly horrible situation, and even worse than Youngstown. Industrial cities tend to have better recovery ability than mining or agricultural communities, and what you describe is really nasty.
Meriadoc - September 25, 2012 - Report this comment
Good job on this one Rob.

The recent cantaloupe salmonella scare probably didn't help much either...

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