The Lives of the Cowboys script
Saturday, June 24, 2006
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(WESTERN THEME)

Sue Scott: THE LIVES OF THE COWBOYS ... brought to you by Provo ... the name to trust when it comes to sleep aids — gentle, safe, reliable: Provo — when you really need to get your rest. And now, as we rejoin Dusty and Lefty, we find them on the desert, just west of Salt Lake City...

(NIGHT SOUNDS)

Garrison Keillor: What goes in a Long Island iced tea, Dusty? I never heard of it before.

Tim Russell: Beats me. Look it up in the bartender's book—

GK: You supposed to put fruit in it? Probably. Where is that danged—

(RATTLE OF BOTTLES, GLASS)

TR: Says: one part Vodka, one part Tequila, one part Rum, one part Gin, one part Triple sec.

GK: Boy (RATTLE OF BOTTLES, POURING) — a drink for people who can't make up their minds.You need ice for that?

TR: Probably. Rich people always like ice in their liquor, Lefty.

GK: I never had a refrigerator on the trail before. (DOOR OPEN) Want to get me out some ice?

TR: You're the butler, I'm the valet, remember?

GK: I don't know how we ever got ourselves into being trail guides for a dude ranch. The Rocking W.

TR: Dude ranch for rich people.

GK: Okay, there's some ice. (SPLASHES) There. I'll be right back. (FOOTSTEPS ON GRAVEL, THEN STOP) Mr. and Mrs. Huff? I have your drinks here. (CANVAS FLAP OPENED)

Fred Newman: Oh. Delightful. How kind of you. This is Long Island Iced Tea?

GK: That's right.

FN: You wouldn't happen to have a lime for that, would you?

GK: Sure.

SS: And I changed my mind, Leslie. Could I have a glass of white wine instead? Thank you.

GK: Be right back. (FOOTSTEPS ON GRAVEL) Leslie. Where'd she come up with Leslie? (STOP)

TR: What is it?

GK: Open a bottle of wine.

TR: Which one?

GK: White.

TR: What kinda white?

GK: I don't care.

TR: Sauterne?

GK: Fine. Just do it. (CORKSCREW, THEN POP) They're lying in the tent on their deluxe air mattresses, in their silk pajamas and bathrobes, watching TV—

TR: Watching what?

GK: Watching a Clint Eastwood western. (POURING WINE) Okay, be right back. (FOOTSTEPS ON GRAVEL, STOP) Got your white wine here, Mrs. Huff. (FLAP OPEN)

SS: Thank you so much.

FN: Yes, thank you. (HE SIPS) The iced tea is a little strong, Leslie. I wonder if you could put more coke in this?

GK: Coke?

FN: Yes, please. And might there be any of the lobster bisque left over from supper? It was so delicious.

GK: I believe it's gone, sir.

FN: Oh. Well— a shame— how about you bring us a tray of wheat thins and some of that scrumptious bleu cheese—

GK: Be right back. (FOOTSTEPS ON GRAVEL) Scrumptious. Never heard a man use the word "scrumptious" before. (STOP) Gol dang it, now I gotta fix this dang drink— (SPLASH) Get me out the cheese. (DOOR OPEN) Cut some.

TR: You want me to cut the cheese?

GK: Don't push me, Dusty. I'm getting bent out of shape as it is. Dressed up in this spangly cowboy outfit like Hank Williams or something.

TR: You look more like Vanessa Williams.

GK: —wearing these ridiculous boots and my hair done up and this cologne and all (CHOPPING CHEESE) — (RUSTLE OF WAXED PAPER) There cheese and crackers. This had better be it, otherwise I am about to blow a gasket. (FOOTSTEPS ON GRAVEL) Got your cheese, Mr. and Mrs. Huff— (FLAP OPEN) Here you go. And here's your Long Island iced tea. Hope it's to your liking.

FN: We're just having a dreadful time getting to sleep, Leslie. Those crickets and frogs are making such a racket.

GK: Okay. My name is Lefty, by the way. Not Leslie. Just for your information.

SS: I was telling Brent that you're a singer, aren't you?

GK: I sing a little.

SS: You know any songs that might help people get to sleep?

GK: Well— I know "Hobo's Lullaby" but I'm not sure that applies in your case.

SS: But you sing the cattle to sleep, don't you?

GK: Sometimes.

FN: If you don't mind, it'd be lovely to hear a song or two—really add to the whole experience— thank you. (FLAP DOWN, FASTER FOOTSTEPS ON GRAVEL, STOP)

GK: Gimme the dang guitar. (THUMP AND BWANG OF STRINGS)

TR: Don't hit em with it, pardner.

GK: "If you don't mind—" he says.

TR: Hey, it's only for a week, and then we take the money and run.

GK: You know, instead of standing around, you could do something useful — set the table for breakfast. Pick some flowers. Go down and massage the cattle.

TR: I already did.

GK: Massage em some more. It's tenderizes the beef. — Be right back. (FOOTSTEPS ON GRAVEL) Okay, folks. What kinda song you want to hear?

SS: Why, a cowboy song, of course.

FN: Yes, indeedy.

SS: We've had just a delightful time with you and your friend.

GK: He's my partner, not my friend. Ma'am—

SS: Your partner! Oh. Well. That's lovely. You know— I had no idea. Did you, Brent?

GK: Not that kind of partner. We work together. Okay?

SS: Of course. Anyway, Brent and I live in Shaker Heights and usually we summer on Nantucket, but this year, we were putting in a swimming pool at the Nantucket place and the yard was all torn up and we thought — hey.

FN: Let's go see Utah.

GK: You want a Utah song—

SS: Oh, that'd be lovely.

(STRUMS CHORD)

GK:
U for Utah, U for Upper Class
U for Utah, U for Upper Class—
U for U-Haul, it's time to haul my trailer...

SS: How long have you worked as a cowboy, Lefty?

GK: Bout thirty years.

SS: Ever had any accidents?

GK: No, not that I recall.

FN: No accidents? In twenty-five years—

GK: Well, I did get stepped on by a horse once. But it wasn't an accident. He did it on purpose.
(SINGS) P for Provo, P for the Promised Land.
P for Provo, P for the Promised Land.
P for a pistol, wish I had one in my hand.

FN: Is this a folk song?

GK: I guess so.

SS: I love the song, don't get me wrong, but you wouldn't happen to have a quieter one, would you, Leslie?

GK: Sure. I'm Lefty, though.

SS: Right. —Honey, could you fix the firmness control on this air mattress—

FN: Of course. You want it not so firm?

SS: Yes.

FN: Okay. How about this? (BIG FLATULENCE SOUND, AIR RUSHING OUT) There.

SS: Thank you, darling. And hand me my wine, would you? Thank you.

GK: (STRUMS)
When it's June in Salt Lake City, it is also June in Butte.
And I'm out here on the desert
In my brand new suit.
We are camping in a camper
That is almost like a house
But I am just a cowboy whose work is herding cows.

You know what's the best thing to put a person to sleep? Dusty could read you a story. He loves to do that, you know.

SS: Oh, that sounds lovely.

GK: I'll go get him. (FOOTSTEPS ON GRAVEL) You're wanted.

TR: For what?

GK: They want to see you.

TR: What'd you tell em?

GK: Go help them get to sleep. (FOOTSTEPS AWAY) Six more days of this and then we'll collect our pay and maybe I'll head up to Cheyenne and see if Evelyn Bebalo is up there. I heard she was. Haven't seen her in four, five years. Wrote her a song — I never got a chance to sing it to her.

(SINGS) How would I know if I loved you?
Would I feel it deep down inside?
Does it crash, does it roar,
Like the surf on the shore?
Or is it more like the tide?
And if I thought that I loved you,
But wasn't quite sure it was true,
Would you sit here and wait
While I go contemplate
For a year and find out if I do?

Guess I better go see how Dusty's doing. (FOOTSTEPS ON GRAVEL)

TR (READING, FADES IN): Goodnight moon, goodnight trail.
Goodnight water in the pail.
Goodnight cow and goodnight steer,
Goodnight old lady drinking your beer.

GK: They asleep yet?

TR: Shhhh.
Goodnight sagebrush, goodnight cactus
So long cowboy's target practice
Goodnight moon and goodnight star
And put away your danged guitar.

(LIGHT SNORING)

GK: They're asleep.

TR: Look at em. They're like children compared to us. Their skin. It ain't all dryed out and crinkly.

GK: She's got some stitches back behind her ears. See that?

TR: I see that. She's 55.

GK: Double nickel.

TR: Looks 32.

GK: From a distance.

TR: Well, we better get some shuteye too. Tomorrow they want to go birdwatching.

GK: We can show em the buzzards down at the waterhole.

TR: Don't forget she wants her eggs poached in the morning.

GK: I'll poach em all right. I'll poach em right out of a turtle's nest.

TR: You gonna serve em turtle eggs for breakfast?

GK: That's for me to know and them to find out.

(THEME)

SS: THE LIVES OF THE COWBOYS...brought to you by Santa Fe Brand Inflatable Saddles...for when the trail is a little longer than you thought. (WHINNY) (MUSIC OUT)

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).

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