The Lives of the Cowboys script
Saturday, June 21, 2008

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SS (ANNC): The Lives of the Cowboys. Brought to you by your Local Horse Dealership. Horses. For cheap transportation that's biodegradable — get a horse! (HORSE) And now, The Lives of the Cowboys.

(HORSES HOOVES, RIDING ON DIRT, THEN STREET)

TR: Well, here we are in Yellow Gulch.

GK: A town well named.

TR: Why'd we even stop?

GK: Rest the horses.

TR: Coulda done that out there by the crick.

GK: Well, we're here so just make the best of it. (WHOAS, HORSES PULL UP, THEY DISMOUNT)

TR: Town sure is pretty at night, ain't it.

GK: At night, after people are in bed, yes.

TR: Kinda tempting to quit the cowboy life and settle in town, don't you think? We could get ourselves a night job.

GK: We've been having this same conversation for twenty-seven years. Can't stand the trail, and then we go to town and we can't stand to be around people.

TR: Not all people.

GK: Right. Townspeople we can't stand. Friendly people.

TR: That's true. People who're friendly to me and want to talk to me — I just have to question their judgment.

GK: So? Here we are. Let's go in the saloon. (DOOR OPEN, PIANO PLAYING LITE JAZZ VERSION OF "CAMPTOWN RACES")

TR: What they done to the saloon?

GK: There's plants in it. Orchids, look like.

TR: The poker players are gone and instead people are making origami cranes. (PAPER FOLDS)

SS: May I help you, gentlemen?

TR: Yeah, we came in to have a glass of rotgut whiskey.

SS: How about a nice Pinot Noir instead?

TR: Huh. What happened to Yellow Gulch?

SS: Oh it isn't called Yellow Gulch anymore. It's called Golden Valley.

FN (WOMAN): I can make you a really jazzy Mohito.

GK: Hey, look at this— there's entertainment.

JENNYS (SING):

Bring me little Ahi tuna
Bring me calamari fried
Bring me a mango salad
Please put the dressing on the side.

GK: Boy, I think I know that one in the middle.

TR: Where you know her from?

GK: Not sure. . JENNYS (SING): I love to live in the wild
The sun is an energy source
There's a more sustainable lifestyle
When you ride a horse.

GK: They're good.

TR: Wish my Mohito would come.

JENNYS (SING):

Out here my life has flowered
My new life has begun
I sure do feel empowered
When I pack a big six-gun.

GK: I don't feel empowered out here. Do you?

TR: Not that I've noticed.

JENNYS (SING):

Bring me a San Pellegrino
With a slice of lime.
And hop on my palomino
And we'll have a real good time.

FN (WOMAN): Here's your Mohito, big guy. If you want it stronger, just tell me.

TR: I want it stronger.

FN (WOMAN, OFF): Okay, I'm going to make it stronger.

SS: Everything all right here?

GK: Yes— so what happened to make Yellow Gulch into Golden Valley?

SS: They discovered natural gas.

GK: Aha.

TR: Natural gas? Heck-

GK: Not that kind, Dusty.

SS: Yeah. Lot of money came in. And with the money came the ahi tuna and the Mohitos and a spa with a hot stone therapy.

TR: We've experienced hot stones for thirty-odd years and never found them therapeutic.

HM: Hi there. Mind if I sit down?

GK: Not at all. Sure liked your singing.

HM: Thanks. You're cowboys, aren't you.

TR: That's right.

HM: That must be a fascinating life. Out there in nature all by yourselves, weeks at a time. You must really get to know each other.

GK: Right.

HM: I envy you, having all that time just to — to think.

GK: That's the hard part, the thinking. I try to take my mind off it by writing songs.

HM: You write songs? Really? (GUITAR)

GK (SINGS):

He was a lad, a fine young lad
Who hears when duty calls
He was just brought up that way
In Cuyahoga Falls.

He was in love with Molly
The fairest and the best
But he knew he was not good enough
For her so he went west.

He joined a band of cowboys
Out on the dusty plains
But every night he went to sleep
Whispering her name.

CHO:

Won't you tell me Molly darling That you love no one but me For I love you Molly darling You are all the world to me One night when work was finished As they sat around the fire The cowboy sang a song for them He'd learned in high school choir. And it was "Cuyahoga" And when the song was done....

HM: Wait a minute— Sorry—

GK: What is it?

HM: You're from Cuyahoga Falls? And you sang in choir?

GK: I did.

HM: So did I.

GK: Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio?

HM: I'm Molly, Jack.

GK: Molly—

HM: (SINGS) O Cuyahoga, I long to see you
Roll away, you rollin' river
O Shenandoah I long to see you
Away, I'm bound away, out across Lake Erie.

GK: It's you. It's you.

HM: It's good to see you, Jack. What happened? You just seemed to disappear without a trace—

GK: I just thought you didn't care.

HM: But I did.

GK: I couldn't tell.

HM: Why didn't you ask?

GK: Didn't know how.

HM: You could've tried.

GK: Maybe so.

HM: So instead you spent twenty-five years wandering in the wilderness.

GK: Thirty-two.

HM: You care to stay for dinner, Jack?

GK: Me? Oh. No. Thanks. We better be hitting the road.

HM: It'd be nice if you would.

GK: I'd only get in your way. I had no social skills back then and I have even fewer now.

HM: Well, do me a favor before you go.

GK: What's that?

HM: Sing a chorus of Molly Darling. For old times' sake.

GK & HM (SING):

Won't you tell me Molly darling that you love none else but me
For I love you Molly darling you are all the world to me

Molly fairest sweetest dearest look up darling tell me this
Do you love me Molly darling let your answer be a kiss.

GK: So long, kid. Have a good life.

(BRIDGE, HORSES WALKING)

TR: How come we passed up a great meal like that? Huh? Tuna. Mango. A wine made from peanuts.

GK: Because once you say yes, then you sink down into comfort and you get used to it and you can't bear to leave it. That's why.

TR: That woman was sweet on you, Lefty.

GK: Sweet on me until she gets to know me. And then there'll just be heartache.

TR: Well. Guess you nipped it in the bud then.

GK: Guess I did.

TR: I was thinking. We could give up herding cattle and instead we could run horseback tours for people who want to come out here and have adventure on the trail. Earn some real money for a change.

GK: Yeah, but then there's people around. Womenfolk.

TR: That'd be the idea.

GK: We'd have to converse. Make eye contact.

TR: Right.

GK: I don't see that happening.

TR: We could practice.

GK: Conversing?

TR: Right.

GK: With who?

TR: You and me.

GK: You and me?

TR: Right.

GK: Now?

TR: Why not?

GK: About what?

TR: Anything.

GK: Okay. You start.

(A BEAT, COWS MOOING)

(THEME)

SS: The Lives of the Cowboys. Brought to you by Cowboy Shimmer. Gives you that rough-weathered look and the patina of perspiration. Spray it on and right away you look rugged.

Old Sweet Songs: A Prairie Home Companion 1974-1976

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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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