The Lives of the Cowboys script
Saturday, March 08, 2008
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SS (ANNC): The Lives of the Cowboys. Brought to you by Santa Fe Brand Paper Punch. If you ever tried to put papers in a loose-leaf binder out on the trail, you know that the old method of punching holes didn't work. (THREE GUN SHOTS) Now, there's a punch that fits any saddlebag and it makes holes that are smooth, not jagged, and evenly spaced. (PUNCH) And now The Lives of the Cowboys.

(COWS, MOOING. FOOTSTEPS ON GRAVEL. STIRRING COOK POT)

TR: Care for more beans?

GK: Nope.

TR: Got plenty.

GK: No thanks.

TR: I'll just have to throw 'em out then.

GK: You do that.

TR: Did you know that in a bowl of Irish bean soup there are exactly two hundred and thirty nine beans?

GK: No.

TR: That's because if there was one more bean, it would be too farty.

GK: Uh huh.

TR: That was a joke.

GK: I suspected as much.

TR: You don't care for jokes?

GK: I like em, I just don't laugh at them.

TR: You don't laugh?

GK: Nope.

TR: How come?

GK: Donno. Never did.

TR: Is it because of you and that Evelyn Beebalo?

GK: No, it's not.

TR: I think you're still in love with her even though she broke up with you.

GK: She found somebody else and she got married, Dusty.

TR: Yeah, well, you're still in love. I can tell because your eyes don't focus.

GK: My eyes don't focus because out here on the wide open plains there isn't anything to focus on. Except that cactus and I don't care to look at it.

TR: So— the old man died of a heart attack one Sunday morning when he was making love to his wife. They made love every Sunday morning in time to the church bells ringing, which was a nice rhythm for them, and then unfortunately the ice cream truck came along.

GK: I heard that one before.

TR: I know.

GK: You told it yesterday.

TR: How about this one? —Where are the Virgin Islands?

GK: Far from the Isle of Man.

TR: Told you that one, huh? What happened when the chicken slept under the car?

GK: She woke up oily next morning.

TR: Why should you wear two pairs of pants when you play golf?

GK: In case you get a hole in one.

TR: What do you call a man with a seagull on his head? -Cliff.

GK: I know. I heard it.

TR: Did you hear about the mechanic who was addicted to brake fluid?

GK: Yes, I did.

TR: He said it was no problem — he could stop any time. Did you hear the Kleenex factory workers went on strike?

GK: Now everyone will have to picket.

TR: Well, how am I supposed to get new jokes when we're out on the trail? Just have to use the ones I got. (HORSES HOOVES, APPROACH)

GK: Looks like we got visitors.

TR: Coupla rough hombres.

GK: One of em's Big Messer.

TR: And the other one is a man known as Spike.

(HORSES ARRIVE, WHOAS AND WHINNIES, DISMOUNTS, SLOW WALK OF TWO MEN ACROSS THE GRAVEL)

GK: Morning, Big Messer. Spike.

TR: What brings you two out here?

GK: Care for some beans? We got plenty.

FN (ROUGH): I came out here cause I heard tell you said I was so ugly I looked like I'd been bobbing for French fries.

TK: And I heard tell that you were telling people that when I sit on the beach, cats try to bury me.

TR: Never said anything of the sort.

TK: That's what they said you said.

GK: Who said?

FN (ROUGH): People said.

GK: What people?

FN (ROUGH): People in town.

TR: We ain't been in town for weeks. D

TK (MESSER): This was some time ago.

FN (ROUGH): They said you told em that I was so dumb it took me an hour to make Minute Rice and that my teeth are so yellow that cars slow down whenever I smile. That true?

GK: Never said anything of the sort.

TK: You never said I was fat?

TR: Never did. Not me.

TK: You say I was fat?

GK: Nope.

TK: People said you said I was fat and have a great big butt.

GK: Didn't say it.

TK: They said you said that the only thing attracted to me was gravity and that my butt was so huge that when I haul ass, I have to make several trips.

TR: I don't know where they heard that. Not from us.

FN (ROUGH): They say that you said that whenever I walk past a bathroom, the toilet flushes.

GK: Never said it.

FN (ROUGH): Anyway, I'm here to tell you that you're gonna pay for saying these things—

GK: Wait a minute, Spike—

FN (ROUGH): I am going to cut you off— today—

GK: Don't do it. Please.

FN (ROUGH): Me and Big Messer here — we control wireless Internet in these here parts and a lot of other parts too —

GK: Please.

TK: Your online days are over.

FN (ROUGH): Your account has been closed. Your password has been revoked.

GK: Please don't do that to me.

TR: Hey, wait a minute— you mean to tell me you had wireless access out here on the prairie?

GK: Long as we stayed close to the telegraph poles, yes.

TR: You never told me...

GK: You never asked. What did you think I was doing sitting there tapping on my laptop?

TR: I thought you were writing to Evelyn Beebalo.

GK: I was.

FN (ROUGH): Well, your days of writing to her are finished, mister.

TK: Yeah. You can get yourself a ballpoint pen and some postcards, mister. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

TR: If I'da known you had wireless Internet, I coulda found a whole lot of new jokes.

FN (ROUGH): You lookin for new jokes? Here's one. The only thing attracted to you is the force of gravity. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

TK: Yeah. You're such a pig, when you go to an all-you-can-eat buffet, they have to install speed bumps ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

(FN JOINS IN LAUGHTER. THEY LAUGH THEMSELVES SILLY)

TR: Listen, fellows, how about we bury the hatchet over a bottle of rotgut whiskey, what do you say?

TK: Well—

GK: Also got some pretty nasty root beer. A single-root. Tastes like dirty.

FN (ROUGH): Sounds good to me.

GK: Here. (POP BOTTLE OPEN, POUR) And put a little rotgut in it for consistency. (OPEN CORK, POUR INTO TWO GLASSES)

TR: There. No reason not to be friends.

TK: Smells like darned good rotgut.

TR: Yep. (CLINK OF GLASSES) Here's to women and whiskey.

FN (ROUGH): Women and whiskey.

GK: Women — (CLINKING AND DRINKING) (PIANO UNDER) SS (REVERB): I didn't get married, Lefty. I couldn't do it because I'm in love with you. Maybe I shouldn't be but I am.

GK: I just don't think I'm the right person for you, Evelyn. Too restless. SS: Guess I'm willing to take that chance.

GK: I love you too much to ever let you get mixed up with a person like myself. SS: Oh Lefty—

FN (ROUGH): Who's he talking to?

TR: Lefty? Oh, he gets in this mood whenever he gets into the root beer. It's his lady love. They've broken up about three times.

TK (MESSER): So where is she now?

TR: He's not sure. Maybe Albuquerque. Maybe Monteverdi.

TK (MESSER): Did you say Albuquerque? I had a gal in Albuquerque. Used to. Gosh. (HE GETS WEEPY) Haven't thought of her in years.

FN (ROUGH): You never told me about her.

TK (MESSER): Yeah. Beautiful woman. Italian.

FN (ROUGH): Hey, I'm your best friend, Big Messer, I oughta know these things.

TK (MESSER): It's too painful.

FN (ROUGH): You never could forget her, huh?

TK (MESSER): I never could. (WEEPY) Women. Can't live with em, can't live without 'em.

FN (ROUGH): I had a gal in Albuquerque too.

TK (MESSER): You did? In Albuquerque?

FN (ROUGH): She was in love with me and then—

TK (MESSER): And what? FN (ROUGH, WEEPING): It's too painful. I can't talk about it.

TK (MESSER): Here. Here's a hanky. FN (ROUGH, WEEPING): It's been ten years and I never got over her. Pamela.

TK (MESSER): What you say?

FN (ROUGH): Pamela. Never could forget her.

TK (MESSER): In Albuquerque.

FN (ROUGH): Yep. Albuquerque.

TK (MESSER): That was the name of my girl. In Albuquerque.

FN (ROUGH): Pamela—?

TK (MESSER): That's right.

FN (ROUGH): You got a picture of her?

TK (MESSER): Right here in my holster. (BEAT) FN (ROUGH, WEEPING): WHY YOU MISERABLE (SFX OF DRAG DOWN FIGHT, CHAIRS, GLASS, SHOUTING, UNDER BRIDGE) (HORSES)

TR: Well, that was interesting, running into those two guys.

GK: Yeah. Nice of em to beat each other up and save us the trouble.

TR: You going to keep in touch with your lady love?

GK: I don't know. She's probably better off without me.

TR: Well, that goes without saying,...

GK: A cowboy wasn't meant to be happy, Dusty. If there's one thing we oughta know by now, it's that happiness is not part of the deal. We get good and lonesome out on the trail and we long for the comforts of society and then we head to town and after a couple days we can 't wait to be lonely again.

TR: So what are we meant to be, Lefty?

GK: We are meant to be cowboys.

TR: What exactly does that mean ?

GK: That's what we're finding out. (GIDDYUPS, HORSES TROT)

(THEME)

SS (ANNC): The Lives of the Cowboys. Brought to you by Scorched Earth Underarm Deodorant. When you haven't bathed for weeks and you suddenly run into a beautiful woman and you need results fast, reach for Scorched Earth Underarm Deodorant and Antiperspirant. (FLAMETHROWER) Takes away the smell and most of the hair.

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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