March 27, 2010
The Paramount Theatre

Seattle, WA

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Guy Noir

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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: I was sitting in my office, bare feet up on the desk, wearing my stars and stripes Speedos, a light breeze playing across my abs, as Marilyn Monroe was running her fingers through my golden hair----

SS (MARILYN): You're so strong, Guy....and yet you’re terribly terribly sensitive. You’re like Joe DiMaggio ---- AND Arthur Miller. All in one beautiful package. Let’s go to my place.

GK: Just then I was awakened by the phone. (PHONE RING) Huh...what?----- who? Oh. (PICK UP) Yeah. Guy Noir here. What can I do you for?

TR (ON PHONE): Mr. Noir, this is Adolph Biddle in Seattle. Got a minute?

GK: Are you the Mr. Biddle at the Seattle Rialto?

TR:  Ditto. I’ve got a problem with a contralto. The contralto Little Crystal Dreidel who was on American Idol.

GK:  The one who could yodel?

TR: Right. Anyway, Crystal Dreidel was to give a Handel recital at the Seattle Rialto ---- but she had a custody battle with Mr. Dreidel over their poodle Myrtle and he was hitting the bottle and sort of befuddled and became homicidal and tried to throttle her on a trestle which was futile and she shot him with a pistol----

GK: The poodle?

TR: Mr. Dreidel. Shot him in the noodle.

GK: Was it fatal?

TR: No, the bullet hit a metal buckle. She won acquittal.

GK: So what’s the problem?

TR:  We had a thousand pounds of strudel for the recital and the whole kit and caboodle melted into a puddle.

GK: And?

TR:  Crystal’s Handel recital sold a total of two tickets so we’re going to have her mud-wrestle in the puddle of strudel. And yodel. And canoodle. 

GK: Canoodle?
TR:  Are you willing to lie horizontal in the strudel and canoodle with Crystal as she yodels Handel?

GK: Me? Canoodle in Seattle? I thought Seattle was more subtle than that.

TR:  We have a crowd of transcendental coastal Pentecostals who get very emotional about tidal mud-wrestling and might come to see Crystal at the Rialto. Especially if there is yodeling and canoodling. 

GK: I have a policy ---- I don’t meddle in a custody battle over a poodle especially if there’s a pistol-packing contralto. (STING) He begged me to come and I was non-committal but I went to Seattle. Got there on a sunny day and (STING, BRIDGE) (CRUISE SHIP HORN, GULLS) I saw a ship tied up to the pier, the MS  Dramamine, and I felt that old restless urge----

I must down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by.


TR: Outta the way, mister. Watcher back----  (FORKLIFT, VOICES OF CREW)

GK: A forklift went by with a load of Metamucil and bran flakes. ----Hey, where’s this ship going?

TR: Alaska. It’s a celebrity cruise.
GK: Who’s the celeb?

TR:  Carson Wyler. The radio host. 

GK: Never heard of him.

TR: Does a show called Los Pampas Casa Compagneros.

GK: What does that mean?

TR: It means The Friend of the House on a Flat Place.

GK: Uh huh. Hispanic show?

TR: No, Norwegian, I think. (BRIDGE)

GK: Security was light due to the fact there were so few passengers. The ship was seriously undersold. I went aboard. (FOOTSTEPS) In the main salon was a shag carpet that looked like a lot of people had lost their lunch there over the years. There was a dame in a black sheath dress slit up the side all the way to the shoulder, dangling so much jewelry she was probably showing up on radar at the airport.

SS: Hi. Are you the captain?

GK: I don’t think so.

SS: Ricky and I are looking for the captain.
GK: And next to her a big guy in a blue pinstripe double breasted suit and a pinky ring with a diamond the size of a cashew. He looked at me like a windshield looks at an incoming June bug.

TR (RICO): Ya hear the lady, we’re looking for the captain of the ship. So what you staring at, ya big jamoke?

SS: Easy, Ricky.

GK: Looking at the lonely sea and the sky, that’s what.

TR (RICO): Oh yeah? What you want?

GK: A tall ship and  a star to steer her by.

TR (RICO): You can steer a tall ship?

GK: Sure.

SS: Sure he can, Ricky.

TR (RICO): Good. The bridge is right up there. Let’s get this moving.  (STING)

GK: I went up to the bridge to find the captain. There was a big wheel like you see in movies and there were computers (SFX) and radar (SFX) and a radio that seemed to be broadcasting weather warnings (STATIC, VOICE CUTTING IN AND OUT) and a squawk box to the engine room----- (TR ON RADIO, EGYPTIAN) the engine room crew did not seem to be English-speaking. But it was a tall ship and there was a star and the sea was lonely, and I was just in that sort of a mood, you know? I pulled on the cord (BOAT HORN) and I shoved the throttle forward and turned the wheel----- (ENGINES) and we pulled the dock away (RIPPING OF WOOD, SHOUTS) from the shore and there was a degree of panic down there ---- I could see piles of crates falling into the water (SLIDING, CRUNCHING) and a forklift (BEEPING, SPLASH), but we were underway (HORN) and I put the engines on full forward ----- (ENGINES) I figured the computers would take over at some point and steer the thing (COMPUTER BEEPING). (BRIDGE) Before long, we were out to sea, sailing into deep fog (FOGHORN) ---- there appeared to be a lighthouse nearby and it was hard to tell if it was getting closer or farther (FOGHORN) ----- I could hear surf on the rocks (SFX) and I could hear seals (SFX) and I could hear sirens (WAILING JENNY’S VOICES) ----- and I could just make out the forms of women sitting on a cliff----- I tried to turn the wheel, but it wouldn’t go-----

SS: Excuse me----

GK: It was the woman in the black dress. And her boyfriend.

SS: We came on the Carson Wyler cruise, Ricky and I, and we were wondering if you would marry us.

GK: Me??

TR: You’re the captain. You can marry people.

GK: Oh.

SS: I thought, maybe if we made a commitment to each other, we wouldn’t argue so much-----

TR: Yeah. Basically, we’re in love, it’s just that we want different things.

GK: You know, I’ve got a situation here, folks. How about we talk later?

SS: I love camping.  He hates camping. I love Seattle. He wants to move to Chicago.

TR: I’m just sick of being wet all the time.

GK: You know, I’ve got a ship to steer, folks. Maybe we could take this up later. I mean,  the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;

GK: Sounds like trouble. (KLAXON)

SS: Do you love me?

TR: How do you mean that?

SS: I mean, is it worth it to try to stick together? Marriages
have their rough passages. It's only worth it if there's love. If there isn't, why waste time trying to patch this up.

GK: I think it’s going to get rough right now, folks. (BOAT HORN)

TR: Do you love me?"

SS: I asked first.

TR: How come I'm the one who has to say if I love you or not?

GK: I think we may have to abandon ship, folks.

SS: It's a simple question. Do you love me or not?
What's so hard about that?

TR: It happens every time. It always winds up as a big argument. Why do we always get into a big fight over every little thing?

SS: A little thing. Our love. A little thing. (CRACK OF MAST BREAKING, SHOUTS OUTSIDE)

GK: Head for the lifeboats, folks.

SS: I love you too much to allow you to evade the truth, Ricky. I love you as a person, not as a symbol of something but as yourself.

TR: What is that supposed to mean?

GK: Let’s go, folks. The ship is sinking. (CRIES OUTSIDE)

SS: You're not going to just walk away from this one, Ricky. I don't care if the boat is sinking, you're going to face up to this relationship and what it really means to you. (CRUNCH, CRACK) Let's deal with it.

GK:  Here’s a life preserver. This is not a test. Repeat. This is not a test (ROAR OF WAVES)

SS: If you can't deal with the truth, Ricky, then I can't be
married to you. I don't want a marriage based on a lie. (JAGGED RIPPING SOUND)

GK: To the life boats. English majors first, then women and children. (SHOUTS AND CRIES, BRIDGE) A chopper came and took everybody off the lifeboat, everybody except me ---- I felt I oughta stay with the ship ----- and also there was a woman I met in the lifeboat. A tall dark woman with a gardenia in her hair.

HM: I’m Madeline. Madeline Maine. I sing in the Explorers Lounge. On the ship.

GK: The Explorers Lounge. Yeah. I was gonna head down there.

HM: You were up on the bridge when it happened? Steering?

GK: I was observing. It was a software glitch. These things happen. So what kind of music you sing?

HM: Torch songs. Ballads. Show tunes.

GK: Sing me something.

HM: I don’t know ---- I’m so cold, I’m trembling-----

GK: Maybe it isn’t due to cold.

HM: I think it is due to cold.

GK: Let me put my arm around you, warm you up.
HM:  That’s nice. You sing too?

GK: Used to.

HM: What sort of songs?

Do you remember that night when we met
And I was so glad I found you?
There in a lifeboat and cold and wet
And me with my arm around you-----

What’ll I do when I have rescued you from your canoe, and said adieu

HM (SINGS): And then I view that blue tattoo that says, “Betty Lou, I love you”

     And when I go to Kalamazoo and you’re in Peru with God knows who
     And I play blues on my kazoo while you are deep into Winnie the Pooh.
GK: I was leaning forward to kiss her when the radio host Carson Wyler stuck his head up from under a canvas tarp (TR NORWEGIAN). He was confused but he had a life jacket on him so I threw him overboard. (TR NORWEGIAN PROTEST, SPLASH) It wasn’t that cold out. I didn’t feel cold at all.

BOTH (SING): What’ll I do but make a chicken stew a cordon bleu, make it for two
             And a baguette or two with Danish blue and a glass of brew and chocolate fondue
             Take off your shoes and let us stick like glue the whole night through
             I smell your shampoo and think Wahoo in reference to the fact I love you. 

GK: Knowing the same words to the same songs ---- it’s the start of a relationship, I think ---- or I thought ---- but No------ those sirens were singing to her (WAILIN JENNIES VOCAL) ----

HM: I have to go.

GK: Why? Don’t. Please. Stay with me.

HM: I belong with them. My sisters.

GK: Luring sailors to their deaths on those jagged rocks?

HM: Somebody has to do it. Otherwise everybody’d have a boat.

GK: Men who cannot resist the beauty of your singing, being drawn inexorably to their deaths?

HM: I think of it as a sort of harvest.
GK: Goodbye. I’ll never forget you.

HM: Goodbye. Land is that way. Go. And don’t come back this way again.

GK: I love you.



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...

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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