Overton High School - Memphis, Tennessee
Reunion of the First Graduating Classes 1962-65

Burma Shave

My family in the 1950's took long road trips on 2-lane roads (before the Interstate Highway System), and these were welcome entertainment. The following are selections. See the full collection at http://www.burma-shave.com/jingles/

The Interstate highway system was begun under President Eisenhower, who appreciated the national defense qualities of the German Autobahn system, which had allowed the Germans to move men and materiel from one end of the country to the other rapidly over these high-speed highways. The Interstate Highways were built in part to facilitate the national defense of the United States.

From 1927 to 1963, along the 2-lane highways we traveled at no more than 50 miles per hour (and without seat belts) there would occasionally be a series of small signs, 100 feet apart, revealing a clever verse advising safe driving and advertising a popular shaving cream, Burma-Shave.

Speed was high / Weather was not / Tires were thin / X marks the spot! / Burma Shave

The midnight ride / Of Paul for beer / Led to a warmer / Hemisphere! / Burma Shave

Around the curve / Lickity split / Beautiful car / Wasn't it? / Burma Shave

No matter the price / No matter how new / The best safety device / In the car is YOU! / Burma Shave

A guy who drives / A car wide open / Is not thinking / He's just hopin'! / Burma Shave

At intersections / Look each way / A Harp sounds nice / But it's hard to play! / Burma Shave

Both hands on the wheel / Eyes on the road / That's the skillful / Driver's code! / Burma Shave

Don't stick your elbow / Out so far / It may go home / In another car! / Burma Shave

Trains don't wander / All over the map / 'Cause nobody sits / In the engineer's lap! / Burma Shave

She kissed the hairbrush / By mistake / She thought it was / Her husband Jake! / Burma Shave

Don't lose your head / To gain a minute / You need your head / Your brains are in it! / Burma Shave

Drive too long / Driver snoozing / What happened next / Is not amusing! / Burma Shave

Brother Speeder / Let's rehearse / All together, / "Good morning, Nurse!" / Burma Shave

Cautious rider / To her reckless dear / "Let's have less bull / And a little more steer!" / Burma Shave

The one who drives / When he's been drinking / Depends on you / To do his thinking! / Burma Shave

Car in ditch / Driver in tree / The moon was full / And so was he! / Burma Shave

Passing school zone / Take it slow / Let our little / shavers grow! / Burma Shave

Listen birds / Those signs cost money / So roost awhile / But don't get funny! / Burma Shave

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