Cafe Boeuf
Saturday, March 29, 1997

GK: ...brought to you by the Cafe Boeuf, with Maurice the maitre'd your host.


GK: Yes, at the Cafe Boeuf, in the tradition of French elegance, dogs are now welcome.


GK: The old French aristocracy would never think of going out without their dogs----- (TK: Non non non non non) --- and now you can bring yours too, if it's well behaved, as my French poodle Elaine is (ELEGANT BARKS) Good evening, Maurice.

TK: Bon soir, monsieur. Bon soir, Elaine. (ELEGANT BARK) This way, monsieur. (FOOTSTEPS) A quiet table, monsieur? Near the window?

GK: Excellent. (FOOTSTEPS STOP) Merci, Maurice.

TK: Does monsieur wish an apertif or wine this evening?

GK: Uh. Elaine, voudriez-vous une apertif? (DOG BARK) Non? Une vin blanc? (DOG BARK) Non? Une vin rouge? (DOG BARKS TWICE) Tres bien. Red wine, Maurice. A half bottle of Chateau La Foot. And two glasses.

TK: Chateau Lafoot. Excellent. (FOOTSTEPS AWAY)

SS (SLIGHTLY OFF, AT FIRST): Excuse me---- that's a nice looking dog.

GK: Thank you.

SS: Seems very intelligent.

GK: Yes, she is. (DOG BARK, PANTS) Excuse me. Q'est-ce que vous avez du? (WOOF) Voudriez-vous une cigarette? (TWO WOOFS) Oui, oui, Elaine. Excuse me--- ma'am?

SS: Yes?

GK: Do you mind if my dog smokes?

SS: Your dog smokes?

GK: She is French. You know.

SS: No, I don't mind. Go ahead.

GK: Thanks. Un moment, Elaine. (LIGHTS MATCH) Tres bien. (DOG INHALES, EXHALES SMOKE. PANTS)

SS: I notice that your dog understands French.

GK: Yes. She seems to. So far.

SS: So you're fluent in French?

GK: No, no. But how much French do you need to know to talk to a dog? Huh? I mean---

SS: She doesn't care for English?

GK: No. Doesn't like the sound of it.

SS: But can your dog understand English? (DOG INHALE, EXHALE. PANTS)

GK: I honestly don't know.

SS: You never tried to find out?

GK: Nope. No need to.

SS: I must say, I've always thought those haircuts they give poodles are the dumbest looking things ----- (DOG SNARL) --- what is she doing? why is she coming toward me? is she going to bite??

GK: No, ma'am. This dog never bites.

SS: But---- (PAUSE AND SOUND OF DOG PEEING ON SHOE). Oh my. Oh dear. This is outrageous. This is--- I am----- you are not----- Waiter! Waiter---- (FOOTSTEPS APPROACH) Waiter, this dog ---

TK: Madame, I am not a waiter. I am a maitre'd.

SS: I don't care. This dog has just expressed herself on my shoe.

TK: Well, how would you like me to express myself on your other shoe----

SS: This dog has ruined my shoe. Look at this. That dog did that.

TK: That is a French dog, madame. I'm sure she had her reasons.

SS: Well. This is the last time I come in here. Goodbye. (A RATTLE OF PLATES AS SHE STANDS UP AND ANGRY WOMAN'S FOOTSTEPS AWAY)

TK: What did she say to Elaine?

GK: She insulted her hair style.

TK: The wrong thing to say to a French dog. Your wine, monsieur.


GK: Elaine? C'est bien? (DOG LAPPING WINE. TWO WOOFS)

....A message from the Cafe Boeuf. (PLAYOFF)

© 1997 by Garrison Keillor

Old Sweet Songs: A Prairie Home Companion 1974-1976

Old Sweet Songs

Lovingly selected from the earliest archives of A Prairie Home Companion, this heirloom collection represents the music from earliest years of the now legendary show: 1974–1976. With songs and tunes from jazz pianist Butch Thompson, mandolin maestro Peter Ostroushko, Dakota Dave Hull and the first house band, The Powdermilk Biscuit Band (Adam Granger, Bob Douglas and Mary DuShane).

Available now»

American Public Media © |   Terms and Conditions   |   Privacy Policy