Not Across My Daughter's Big Brass Bed You Don't, Bob

Times have a-changed too much when the 62-year-old former icon of integrity shills for bras and panties

| April 22, 2004

'Oh, the times they are a-changin,'' alright, when today's teenagers come to know Bob Dylan as a sorry old man on television selling ladies undergarments. Wizard on the harmonica? Rock icon? Voice of the sixties? No longer, apparently. 'Angry, dissipated and possibly deranged ... geezer sexually fixated on a girl young enough to be his granddaughter' were the words that came to Leslie Bennetts' mind when she watched Dylan play a song called 'Love Sick' while 'a nubile young model writhed around in her underwear and stiletto heels in the new Victoria's Secret commercial.'

Dylan's move to the electric guitar in Newport in 1965, prompting an outcry among folk traditionalists, was one thing. But this corporate sellout by the man who asked, 'How many times must the cannon balls fly?' and rallied around the wrongly imprisoned boxer Rubin 'Hurricane' Carter as the Vietnam War left a stain on America's soul is another story altogether. Why did he do it? Bennetts asks. Nearly 40 years ago, she recalls, Dylan was asked what, if anything, might tempt him to sell out. His answer -- 'Ladies' undergarments.'

Sadly, as Bennetts and her husband find solace in Dylan's peacenik music from a time deserving of more and more comparisons with the current quagmire as thousands die meaninglessly in Iraq, their 15-year-old daughter will never understand 'what made this raspy-voiced guy so important, anyway.'

'When the man who wrote 'Forever Young' starts leering at jailbait during prime time, the result looks like a recruiting tool for a pedophilia advocacy group.'
-- Jacob Wheeler

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