January 30, 2010
Tucson Convention Center Arena

Tucson, AZ

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Guy Noir

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(THEME)

TR: A dark night in a city that knows how to keep its secrets but one man is still trying to find the answers to life’s persistent questions ... Guy Noir, Private Eye.

GK: It was January and I was in Tucson, Arizona. And right there is my definition of good luck and excellent timing. January in Tucson. High of 70. Blue skies. Mountains. Brief rainfall scheduled for after the dinner hour. Which brings in a lot of northerners.

SS (MIDWEST): Boy, lot of traffic today. How come those people behind us are yelling and shaking their fists, Earl?

TR (MIDWEST): No idea. (HORN HONKS) Hold yer horses, people. What’s the big rush?
(BRIDGE)

GK: I’d been brought to Tucson by the Better Visitors Bureau.

SS: It isn’t that we don’t like Midwesterners, Mr. Noir. But they poke around the golf courses, they take forever making up their minds in restaurants, they come to an intersection and they wave to other drivers to go first, they’re always asking for directions

FN: So we’re designing a ghetto for them. It’s a mobile home park with artificial sod and artificial maple trees and there’s a lake and the street names are all English.

GK: So what do you want me to do?

FN: Follow that couple and find out what they like to do and we’ll put all that stuff in our mobile home park. (STING, BRIDGE)

GK: So I did. The couple drove fifteen miles out into the desert and halfway up a mountain, and there, on a lonely dirt road, (MOTOR DIES, COUGHING, WHEEZING) —

SS: What’s wrong?

TR: Engine overheated.

SS: Oh no —
(STARTER, COUGHS, WHEEZES)

TR: Get out of the car, Gladys.

SS: Here? But there are snakes out there.

TR: Get out of the car — (THEY SCRAMBLE OUT)

SS: I don’t see why we don’t just —

TR: Stand back! (BIG EXPLOSION)

SS: The radiator blew up!! I didn’t know they could do that.

TR: There’s an arroyo over there. We’ll go over and call for help on our cellphones. (FOOTSTEPS ON SAND) (BURNING SANDS CHORDS)

GK: I stayed out of sight behind a rock. Buzzards circled overhead. (SHRIEKS) And then a demented man came out of the underbrush waving a hatchet. He was carrying a backpack as big as he was.

FN (DEMENTED GIBBERISH)

SS: Oh dear. I hope he doesn’t hurt himself.

TR: Boy O boy, this doesn’t look good at all.

SS: I told you we never shoulda left Minnesota.

TR: It was your idea to come here.

SS: My idea???? Heck it was.

GK: I stepped in.

SS: Oh!!! — Who’re you?
GK: Yes. Why don’t you two go back down to the highway and flag down a car and I’ll take care of the old-timer. (FN OLD MAN, CONFUSED, DAZED) Easy, old timer.

FN: Don’t touch me. I’m demented, you know. Bonkers. Off my rocker.

GK: I can see that.

FN: Do I look demented?

GK: Yes. Your hair is wild, saliva dripping from your lips, eyes rolling around, nostrils flared.

FN: Don’t have anything in the nostrils, do I?

GK: Nope.

FN: You’re sure?

GK: Nothing.

FN: I may be demented but I don’t want to be running around with some big snot in my nose.

GK: No.

FN: Some big green booger poking out.

GK: Your nostrils are clear, sir.
FN: Where’s Tucson?

GK: About fifteen miles that way.

FN: Gotta get to Tucson. Find the assay office.

GK: That’s a heavy pack you’re carrying, pal.

FN: You’re telling me. That’s how come I’m demented. Carried this pack thirty-seven miles.

GK: You a hiker?

FN: Prospector. Been prospecting up in the gulch since 1974. What year is it now?

GK: Prospecting for what?

FN: Prospecting —

GK: Let me see what’s in the bag —

FN: Don’t touch it. Don’t touch — don’t — — (HE COLLAPSES, DEAD)


GK: I felt his neck. No pulse. He was dead, as dead as one man can be. As dead as burlesque or the epic poem. As dead as the late-night TV sermonette that came right before the test pattern. And then I looked through his backpack and there was gold in there. Big chunks of it the size of bricks. He was carrying about 560 pounds of gold. No wonder he was tired. I wasn’t sure what was the ethical thing to do so, while I thought about it, I put the gold in the back of my car and drove to the airport and checked the bag through to Minneapolis.

TR: You got some excess weight, mister. Almost six hundred pounds. What you got in here? Gold ingots? (THEY CHUCKLE)

GK: Any rule against gold ingots? (THEY CHUCKLE)

TR: Not that I’m aware of. But I’ll have to charge you extra.

GK: Fine. (BRIDGE) Five hundred sixty pounds of gold comes to $9,709,056. It was a lovely flight. For one thing I got upgraded. (BRIGHT DING)

SS: You’ve been upgraded to first class! (TAP DANCE FLOURISH) (BRASS FANFARE)

GK: I can’t believe it!

SS (SINGS): First class! First class!
GK: This never happened to me before.

FN (SINGS):

You’ve flown with us since 1983.
You’ve been subjected to such misery.
Were stuffed in tiny seats but now that’s past.
You are first class, you are first class. (BRIDGE)

GK: I was planning what to do with the nine million dollars all the way to Minneapolis , to the baggage carousel, and the baggage came (BAGGAGE CAROUSEL ALARM), and the bags came down (THUMPS) and there was no 600-pound backpack. I checked with an agent.

TR: No record of those bags.

GK: I checked them in Tucson.

TR: No record.

GK: Here’s the claim checks.

TR: Computer has no record of it at all.

GK: How can you lose four bags?

TR: Didn’t lose em. We just have no record of them.

GK: You lost them.
TR: They weren’t on the plane.

GK: So where’d they go?

TR: Where’d what go?

GK: My big knapsack. It was 560 pounds, very dirty, and it had sort of brownish-yellowish dust coming out of it.

TR: Oh, that one.

GK: Where’d it go?

TR: It got routed through Madrid to Madagascar.

GK: Madagascar!!!!

TR: Hey, we’re not perfect.

GK:Madagascar. — Outside it was snowing (BLIZZARD) and the road was a sheet of ice (TIRES SPINNING) and a pack of wolves was circling the parking ramp. (WOLVES) It was colder than a witch’s — (SS: Hey! What are you doing????) And then I thought — I can’t go all the way to Madagascar just to get — can I? (STING) (JUNGLE BIRDS, HACKING AT BRUSH) (TR MADAGASCARESE)


(THEME)

SS: A dark night in a city that knows how to keep its secrets but one man is still trying to find the answers to life’s persistent questions ... Guy Noir, Private Eye.

(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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