April 24, 2010
The Town Hall

New York, NY

«archive page

English Majors

Listen (MP3)
Listen (RealAudio)


SS: I am so nervous around English majors. I'm so afraid I might make a grammatical error. I mean, you are so so articulate. You're just so extremely cogent and concise — and look at me, here I am gushing like an idiot or something. I wish I could express myself as well as you do.

GK: I could help you.

SS: Oh gosh. Really??? How??

GK: Come here. I'll show you.

SS: What are you doing? (SHE SQUEALS, GIGGLES) Oh my.

GK: I teach English by the touch method.

SS: Ooohhhh. (BRIDGE)

TR (ELVIS, REVERB): Hey, chief. I sure do envy you English majors — I mean, like, wow, to write stuff for chicks about a hunka hunka burning love.

GK: That's what we do, Elvis. It's all about love.

TR (ELVIS): Yeah. That hot burning love. Like a volcano that's hot. Gets me itchin like a man on a fuzzy tree. Sure wish I'd majored in English. But I'm just a dead white man.

GK: We English majors really like dead white men, Elvis.

TR (ELVIS, REVERB): Oh really? Hey, you like Keats? John Keats?

GK: Keats? You bet.

TR (ELVIS, REVERB): A thing of beauty is a joy forever: its loveliness increases; it will never pass into nothingness. — Cool, huh?

GK: Beautiful.

TR (ELVIS): Man, nothing beats Keats.— Beauty is truth, truth beauty,' - that is all ye know on earth, and all ye need to know. — that's what I was trying to say, man. I told him that.

GK: You told Keats?

TR (ELVIS): Yeah, man. He's here. Shakespeare, Shelley. Poe. Yeats. They were all trying to pick up chicks. That's why they wrote. Walt Whitman didn't, but — you know—

GK: So you've met all these guys.

TR (ELVIS) Yeah. And Emily. Wow. Love that white dress.
GK: You've met Emily Dickinson?

TR (ELVIS): Yeah, man. Danced with her. Tried to make out but— man, that dress is really buttoned up tight. Tried to put her in the mood, chief.

GK: Well, don't give up, Elvis. You've got time.

TR (ELVIS, REVERB): I'm here for awhile, aren't I.

GK: Yeah.

TR (ELVIS, REVERB): I been a long time gone, haven't I.

GK: Yeah, but you're still remembered.

TR (ELVIS, REVERB): She never heard of me at all.

GK: No, but we still remember you.

TR (ELVIS): I tried to tell her I was really big at one time.

GK: You were.

TR (ELVIS): What month is it there now?

GK: April, Elvis. It's almost May.

TR (ELVIS): "Well, nothing can bring back the hour of splendor in the grass. The loveliness of summer flower, it's glory soon is past." What's his name, the guy who wrote that?

GK: Wordsworth, Elvis. William Wordsworth.

TR (ELVIS): Kind of an oddball, but I like his stuff. All I can say is, I wish I'd been an English major, chief. Sure do. Yeah.

GK: Don't you wish you were one, too?. — A message from POEM, the Professional Organization of English Majors.

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»

American Public Media © |   Terms and Conditions   |   Privacy Policy