Left-Handed Approach

“Variety Show” cassette, 1989 – Hamilton, ON

John Harvey, John Kinsella


Hated Uncles "Variety Show" cassette booklet

I don’t believe in suicide,
I believe in liver disease, alcohol
lung cancer, cigarettes,
and breaking my ankle
doing fancy pirouettes.

I used to write a poem a day,
now I realize, there’s nothing left to say,
burning, turning in bed at night
hoping one day I’ll see the light
now I know, now I know

There’s no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow
wizard of oz fantasies
leaving us with no place to go – but Ethiopia.

Measled infested child looking for some bread,
he’s got no home, people wish he was dead.

I’m not going to repeat myself
repeat myself
repeat myself

I believe in liver disease,
and little green spots on the bottom of my ass!
as I stare into the bottom of an empty glass
Like I said – I’m not going to repeat myself.

People dance and stare, at their reflection in a broken mirror
they make me laugh, with their costumes and purple hair!
I’ve got no money nor time to waste my time
making myself pretend that I’m really alive.
I’m not going to repeat myself.

Ancient old man with the mosquito-infested body
people have no patience, to keep you in their memory.

I’m writing this poetry, for all of you, you know I love you, I really do
just don’t bother me, I won’t bother you,
you’re talking, when I’d rather hear the cows go “Moo!”

I’m not going to repeat myself.

Read the newspapers and discover yourselves
politicians are talking just like you:
elected to do nothing, they just blame somebody else
but the problems didn’t grow without a seed
and it’s not enough to kill the weed
there are deeper roots you can cut inside yourself,
but if you let the roots grow, you can’t blame anybody else

I’m not going to repeat myself
thank you

Left-Handed Approach - drawing by John Kinsella 1989
Hated Uncles "Variety Show" cassette booklet

art by John Kinsella for the “Variety Show” booklet 1989


  • One of my personal favourites from the “Variety Show” cassette.
  • This had been around for a couple of years before I dusted it off for the duo Uncles of JK and myself.
  • The recording is pretty rough (haha), but I loved the music JK wrote for this long poem that takes off in all directions.
  • We used to perform this during the drunkest Hated Uncles shows ever. I have no idea how (or if) we pulled it off. Good times! I think?

Lyric Written: 1984
Recorded: 1989

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