March 29, 2015 · Johnny Cash roulette Folsom Prison

Reno

I was halfway home to Tuscon when my
trusty Buick up and had a breakdown outside Reno.
I walked a mile to the service station, placed a call,
said "Honey, don't you worry, kiss the baby."
I didn't know I was in for one hell of a night.

I'd sold a thousand orders of the latest corduroys
so I was happy outside Reno.
The mechanic at the station said, "I'll have another
timing belt tomorrow, just sit tight."
I didn't know I was in for one hell of a night.

I walked down to the bus stop and I counted up my dollars
I had ninety outside Reno.
I got off when I saw a sign that said "Hotel/Casino"
and I bought myself a glass of red.
I didn't know I was in for one hell of a night.

I sat down at the roulette wheel and I
gave the dealer twenty of my dollars down in Reno.
My chips were white and I put them down on red
and then the dealer said "no more bets."
I didn't know I was in for one hell of a night.

I watched the little white ball run its
circles past the numbers, I was dizzy down in Reno
A man in a black shirt and a black hat
and a black Navajo string tie sat next to me

The little white ball jumped and bounced and
then it rested on its final number: black thirteen
The man said calmly in a deep, dark voice,
"You never bet against the black in this town, son."

I gave the dealer twenty more and put my chips down
on my baby's birthday: the eleventh
When I saw where the ball stopped, I jumped up and
waved my hands and yelled, "Yeeha! It's my lucky day."

I looked around the table and I noticed that my
glass had fallen over down in Reno
The man in black had gotten up, he looked down at his suit
and he looked mad, and he looked grim

He turned and said, "now boy, there's going to be some
trouble between you and me down in Reno"
I handed him a silver chip and said "I'm very sorry,
maybe this can pay the bill"

He grabbed my hand and twisted it and threw me down
under the roulette table down in Reno
He said, "There's no redemption for you now,
you're just a double-zero man" and pulled his gun

I didn't hear the shot, I saw a silver ball, and then
my eyes went red, and then to black
I told the man "Don't leave me now, I have a wife
and kid at home, can I just tell you their names?"

So he sat down next to me and I told him all about my
sweet Christine and little Luke
The man in black sat with me and he watched me die.