St. Paul
Saturday, March 9, 2002
Listen


(GK: Garrison Keillor; SS: Sue Scott: TR: Tim Russell, TK:Tom Keith; RD: Rich Dworsky)

GK: … after a message from Good Old St. Paul. If your life seems stressful and unnecessarily complicated, maybe you need to think about ----- Good Old St. Paul. Not to be confused with our big suburb to the west. People are always asking me, "What's the difference between Minneapolis and St. Paul?" Here is a pretty typical scene on a Sunday morning in Minneapolis-----

(LIGHT PIANO)

SS: I love Sunday morning brunch. It's so relaxed.

TR: It really is. I love that sense of the whole day stretching out in front of you. No schedule. Just ----- time.

SS: That whole sense of beingness.

TR: Right. That whole existential quality.

SS: How's your double espresso amaretto latte?

TR: Good. Good biscotti, too. And your ginseng peppermint Echinacea aloe tea?

SS: It really centers me. You know what I mean?

TR: Of course.

SS: You read the Sunday Times yet?

TR: Yeah.

SS: Everything? The Book Review?

TR: Yeah.

SS: The magazine?

TR: Yeah.

SS: Arts section?

TR: Uh huh.

SS: Finish the crossword?

TR: I got a start on it

SS: You get the long ones? The four long lines Across?

TR: No.

SS: It's a Shakespeare sonnet.

TR: Oh.

SS: "Let me not to the marriage of true minds-----"

TR: Oh. Thanks. You just added half an hour to my day.

SS: I got that one right away. I've always been good at crosswords. (PAUSE, THEN… ELECTRONIC RING)

TR: Is that you or me?

SS: It sounds like you.

TR: I'll just let it go to voice mail. (ONE MORE RING. THEN AUTOMATIC PICKUP, BEEP. TK ON TAPE: Hi, it's Tom. Just checking in. Talk to you later.")

SS: Who's that?

TR: No idea. (BEEPING CONTINUES, UNDER ) Sounds like your beeper.

SS: It's not mine. Maybe it's your car alarm remote…

TR: Nope.

SS: Could be your Global Positioning Device. Or your cardiovascular monitor…

TR: That's more high-pitched. How about your blood glucose meter?

SS: It doesn't beep, it vibrates. How about your PDF…. or your pocket karaoke?

TR: Didn't bring those.

SS: Your Pocket Laptop Computer…?

TR: Lemme take a look. (RUSTLE)

SS: Wow, that is a small laptop. I mean that as a compliment.

TR: Not my personal air purifier. Or my electronic field thesaurus…You carrying your pepper spray stun gun?

SS: Not today. Hey, it's my personal fax machine. (THE BEEPING STOPS) (PULL PAPER OUT) It's from Brent. It says, "Trish, I am crazy nuts about you. Just want you to know. Thinking about you day and night. Can't wait until Monday."

TR: What's Monday?

SS: Let me check my Palm Pilot. (BEEPS) "Monday at 5, plane leaves for Cancun. With Brent."

TR: That's nice for you. That you were able to move on and find someone new.

SS: How about you? You with anybody?

TR: I have this terrible pain in my chest. (HE GROANS AND COLLAPSES)

SS: Oh gosh. Now what am I supposed to do? According to his cardiovascular monitor, he seems to be a flat line. What if I press this----- (KLAXON) whoops, car alarm. Guess I better call 911. (BEEPS) Oh, oh ---- I think I just turned off his pacemaker. Kevin? Kevin? (CHORDS)

GK: That's a pretty typical scene in Minneapolis. This wouldn't have happened in Good Old St. Paul because on Sunday morning you'd have been in church and one of the ushers is an emergency medical technician. For another, we don't have all that electronic gear around to confuse us. If something beeps (BEEPS)-----

TR: Sounds like the muffins are done in the microwave.

SS: You want me to get those?

TR: I got em.

SS: You remember I'm using the car this morning-----?

TR: Right.

SS: Going over to Nancy's in Minneapolis to use her p.c. How come we don't get one?

TR: I'm not done paying for the electric typewriter, darn it. Besides, what do we need a p.c. for?

SS: E-mail. Everybody's doing e-mail now.

TR: You don't say.

SS: Nancy gets fifteen or twenty e-mails a day.

TR: Sounds like a full-time job.

SS: You don't want to hear from your friends?

TR: Not every time one of their kids makes a funny face, no. I say, if you can't pick up a pen and paper, then maybe it's not that darned important.

(MUSIC)

GK: Good Old St. Paul. We lost the struggle to be No. 1 years ago and it was the best thing that could have happened. Back in the Twenties, our city council had the foresight to put the St. Paul airport down by the river where it can't be expanded and every few years it floods out completely. There are lessons to be learned, and St. Paul learned them. When life starts to seem just too much, have you ever asked yourself----

TR (RICH GUY, TIGHT JAW): Maybe we ought to try St. Paul---

GK: I think you'd like it. (MUSIC BUTTON)

© Garrison Keillor 2002

Old Sweet Songs: A Prairie Home Companion 1974-1976

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