Not standing on a corner in Winslow, Ariz

May 16, 2007

The lyrics seem to leave little room for debate. In “Take It Easy,” the 1970s country-rock song written by Jackson Browne and Glenn Frey that The Eagles recorded as their first singlTakeItEasy.JPGe, the second verse is… 

Well, Im a standing on a corner
In Winslow, Arizona
And such a fine sight to see
Its a girl, my lord, in a flatbed Ford
Slowin down to take a look at me


So where exactly was the corner that Jackson Browne was standing on when he wrote “Take It Easy”?

The people of Winslow, Arizona take the lyrics at face value and have erected a statue and mural commemorating the song in their downtown.
BuTakeItEasy2.jpgt the people of Flagstaff — especially Gary McElfresh — disagree. They insist the corner in question is in East Flagstaff, where a Weinerschnitzel once stood — and where McElfresh’s Dog Haus stands today.
They cite an interview that Jackson Brown gave to Matthew Ziegler where he said “the image of that girl driving a truck was an image that came from east Flag(staff). That’s what you heard. It wasn’t really a flatbed Ford. It was a Toyota truck and it was pulling out of Weinerschnitzel.”
Based on that interview, McElfresh (left), who’s operated the restaurant for 34 years, claims his corner on Route 66 in Flagstaff is the “Take It Easy” corner — though he hasn’t gone so far as to erect any statues or press any false claims suits against Winslow.
McElfresh explains his mellow restraint — very Jackson Browne, when you think of it — this way.
“Winslow,” he says, “needs all the help it can get.”

Listen to McElfresh on actor Chevy Chase, an Air Force top gun and Jackson Brown in ’66


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What Gary has to say about Winslow and it’s “false” claim to fame makes me very sad, and it is the reason I do not frequent this restaurant when I come to Flag, and turn anyone I know away from it.

As a Winslow resident it’s very disheartening so see that kind of attitude. We have a lot of pride in how our community has grown, and it wasn’t because of Don Henley–it was because of the heart and soul of several people within the community itself.

I wouldn’t be surprised if he begun this rumor out of spite. What will stop him from saying bad things about Hollywood because of that fateful blizzard?

If you want real chili, real friendly service, and REAL homegrown attitudes about food, head on down to Winslow sometime and visit The Root Beer Stand.

Beats the Dog Haus (even when it was Wienerschnitzel) ANY time.

Posted by Mary Pherrelson | Report as abusive

To comment on Mary’s post re: the “rumor” source; for a long time there was actually a photo copy of the article with the Matthew Ziegler/Jackson Brown story taped to the drive-thru window (read while u wait). Mr. McElfrish didn’t start anything, just passed along something that already existed. Personal attitudes & opinions are another story… It’s still a great, classic song!

Posted by Brett B | Report as abusive