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Saturday, January 25, 2003
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(GK: Garrison Keillor; SS: Sue Scott; TR: Tim Russell; TK: Tom Keith)

GK: My little daughter got a Christmas gift that she loves and thanks to whoever gave it to her. We lost all the gift tags. Sorry. ----- It's a book that you set into a holder and when you run your stylus along the words you hear them recited or sung by the little cassette that you stick in the side. Or sounds. You put the stylus on the picture of a cat and (MEOW). Same thing we've been doing for years on the show, now my daughter can do it with this book.

So if you sit up on my lap, I'm going to tell you a story about a man, Mr. Fred, who is sleeping (LIGHT SNORING) and having a beautiful dream in which he's (SCUBA) swimming in the ocean as gorgeous fish pass by (BUBBLES) and dolphins (DOLPHINS) and a pod of whales sing (WHALES), whales with big beautiful eyes and eyelashes (SEDUCTIVE WHALE SINGING) and suddenly (SNOW BLOWER) -----he's awakened by a snowblower (TK GROAN) ---- the neighbor is out clearing his driveway ----- Mr. Fred pulls the drapes (SLIGHT RUSTLE OF BLINDS) and (TK PAIN OF BRIGHT LIGHT) it's all white out there, (BLIZZARD) snow falling, and he settles back into the pillow (TK CONTENTMENT, THEN LIGHT SNORING) and soon he's back there in the sea (SCUBA) swimming in a school of bright yellow fish and he reaches shore (SURFACE) and it's a beautiful white beach (SURF AND GULLS) and the birds are singing in the trees (TROPICAL BIRDS) and now (HORSE APPROACHING, GALLOPING IN WATER) a palomino comes galloping along with a beautiful dark haired woman riding bareback (HORSE WHINNY, PASSING) ----followed by her dog…


(DOG RUNNING) ---- and suddenly a bird dives at Mr. Fred from the sky (BIRD CRY, WHICH TURNS INTO ALARM) but it isn't a bird, it's the alarm clock (ALARM) and he turns it off (SMASH, BREAKAGE) ----- no need to get up this early, 8 a.m. ----- it's Sunday ---- who forgot to turn the alarm off? Where is Mrs. Fred? Must've gone to the kitchen. Maybe she's baking some of those caramel rolls. (TK PLEASURE) He tries to get back to that beach, although (SNOW SHOVELING) the neighbor is out there scraping the sidewalk, but pretty soon (SURF AND GULLS) Mr. Fred is back there and here comes that horse again (HORSE APPROACHING, IN WATER) and that dark-haired girl riding bareback ---- (HORSE PASSING, WHINNY, AND DOG) and now here comes a shark out of the water (ALARM) ---- but it's the alarm, another alarm (TK AWAKENED) and he shuts that off (WHACK, SMASH) and then another alarm goes off (KLAXON) and he shuts that down (KLAXON STOP), and where is Mrs. Fred? (TK: HONEY?????) The neighbor is outside with the snowblower. (SNOW BLOWER) ---- wait a minute---- she's in Phoenix--- (TK ALARM) ---- you're supposed to fly there ---- today (TK ALARM) ---- when is the plane? 9:30? (TK PANIC) You dash into the bathroom (TK PANIC, BARE FEET, SHOWER) and jump in the shower and wash and jump out and dry your hair (DRYER) and you get dressed (TK: Now where is my ticket?) ---- your plane ticket must be on the counter here somewhere (RUMMAGE) ---- it was here just a couple days ago (RUMMAGE) ---- Maybe it's an e-ticket. Get to the airport. Let the airline worry about it. (RUNNING FOOTSTEPS) Out the door. Gotta hurry….


(DOOR CLOSE) (FOOTSTEPS IN SNOW, TK SHIVERING) Cold out here. (CAR STARTER. COLD STIFF. TK: Come on, come on, come on.) CAR STARTER. COLD. TK: Come on, baby. Come on.) Here's the plane ticket. Sitting on the front seat. (TK: Oh boy.) (CAR STARTER) Ticket says 9 a.m. That's twenty minutes from now. You're never going to make it. (TK: Aw, that clock is always fast.) And now here comes your neighbor in his big S.U.V…(POWERFUL ENGINE) (HONKS) He's motioning for you to get out---- (TK JOWLY MAN) He's offering to give you a jump start. (TK: Thanks.) He hands you the jumper cables. (TK JOWLY MAN) You open your hood. (CREAKING OF FROZEN HOOD) (SHIVERING) Gosh, it's cold. Oh boy O boy. Now let's see. You clamp one end to his positive pole and the other end to your positive. (REV OF POWERFUL ENGINE) And you clamp the other cable to --- how does this go? Negative to negative? No. It should be negative to car frame, right? But which car frame? Yours or his? Must be his? Right? He seems to be motioning that way. So---- (BIG EXPLOSION, THEN OTHER EXPLOSIONS. THEN HUGE EXPLOSION) It's all gone. Your car. (ANOTHER EXPLOSION) Your house. (TK WEEPING) Here comes that flight to Phoenix overhead---- (JET OVERHEAD) Gone. And here you are alone. (WOLF) Or almost alone. (WOLVES) There's five of them. (SNARLING) Five of them and one of you. But you have a jumper cable. (WHIRRING) And you're a Minnesotan. You can deal with this. (TK: Get back. I'm coming through. And nobody can stop me.) (SNARLING) Okay, honey. That's the end of the story. Lights out. Time for bed. (SNARLING) Don't worry about them. They're more afraid of you than you are of them. (HOWL)

© Garrison Keillor 2003

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»

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