RIP Paul Newman and his Plastic Jesus

Cool Hand Luke I have to thank Paul Newman for making Cool Hand Luke, not because it’s a great ’60s film about non-conformism and the divide between old and young, free spirits and the establishment.. but because without it I’d probably have been named Jacob or something equally wack.

Plastic Jesus Lyrics

I don’t care if it rains or freezes
‘Long as I got my plastic Jesus
Riding on the dashboard of my car
Through my trials and tribulations
And my travels through the nations
With my plastic Jesus I’ll go far

Plastic Jesus, plastic Jesus
Riding on the dashboard of my car
I’m afraid He’ll have to go
His magnets ruin my radio
And if I have a wreck He’ll leave a scar

Riding down a thoroughfare
With His nose up in the air
A wreck may be ahead, but He don’t mind
Trouble coming He don’t see
He just keeps His eye on me
And any other thing that lies behind

Plastic Jesus, plastic Jesus
Riding on the dashboard of my car
Though the sunshine on His back
Make Him peel, chip and crack
A little patching keeps Him up to par

When I’m in a traffic jam
He don’t care if I say “damn”
I can let all my curses roll
Plastic Jesus doesn’t hear
‘Cause he has a plastic ear
The man who invented plastic saved my soul

Plastic Jesus, plastic Jesus
Riding on the dashboard of my car
Once His robe was snowy white
Now it isn’t quite so bright
Stained by the smoke of my cigar

If I weave around at night
And policemen think I’m tight
They never find my bottle, though they ask
Plastic Jesus shelters me
For His head comes off, you see
He’s hollow, and I use Him for a flask

Plastic Jesus, plastic Jesus
Riding on the dashboard of my car
Ride with me and have a dram
Of the blood of the Lamb
Plastic Jesus is a holy bar

This film has always been kind of an enigma for me. It was after watching it in 1973 that Mom decided to call me Luke.

One Response to “RIP Paul Newman and his Plastic Jesus”

  1. Paul Newman was probably one of the coolest renegades ever captured on film. YOu know the man had a heart as big as a mountain in the way his foundation keeps on giving long after he moved on.

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