June 5, 2010
Santa Barbara Bowl

Santa Barbara, CA

«archive page

The Lives of the Cowboys

Listen (MP3)
Listen (RealAudio)


SS: THE LIVES OF THE COWBOYS....brought to you Doc Holliday’s Book of Western Etiquette....(GUNSHOT AND RICHOCHET) And now here's today's exciting story....

GK: Whoa, whoa. Easy. (HORSE WHINNY, HOOVES STOP, SOME NERVOUS CLOPPING, CHUFFING). Whoa. Easy. Santa Barbara, Dusty. We arrived.

TR: Why’d we come? I forget.

GK: Came for relaxation.

TR:  Something about relaxation makes me uneasy.

GK: Well, get over it.

TR:  State Street. All the streets got names. And they intersect. Right away, I feel lost. Out on the range, no roads or anything, there’s no such thing as being lost. You're
just wherever you are.  (HORSE SETTLES.

FN: (OFF): Hey. Hey you.
GK: What?

FN: You two fellows here for the big Scrabble game down at the Triple Score Saloon? Dollar a point. E's are wild.

GK: Maybe later. Got other things to think about now. ----You coming with me, Dusty?

TR: I’ll stay with the horses.

GK: Okay. I’m just going to get some directions. (FOOTSTEPS.

SS: Hello. How’s your day going so far?

GK: This a saloon?

SS:  Nope. Coffeehouse.

GK: Okay. I’ll have a cuppa coffee.

SS:  The menu’s up there on the wall.

GK: Don’t need a menu. Just coffee.

SS: How about whipped cream? Cinnamon sprinkles? Chocolate? Hazelnut syrup?

GK: Just coffee. (POURING)

SS: You seem sort of down.

GK: I’m a cowboy.

SS: You want to talk about it?

GK: About what?

SS: About feeling down?

GK: I'm a cowboy. We don't talk about feelings. When we get one, we just spit. 

SS: Well, I tell you, if I were riding all over on cattle drives and sleepin on the ground and comin to town filthy an' lonesome and my only recreation was gamblin n' drinkin' n' hanging out with cheap floozies, I would become a vegan. (SHE HAWKS AND SPITS. DISTANT DING)

GK: Well, some things there ain't an easy explanation for, ma'am. Cowboy code. Code of manly honor and all. Life on the trail. It's what I do.


GK: That's what I call good spitting.

SS: So tell me. If the trail is your life, how come you're not out on it right now?

GK: You wouldn't happen to have a guitar here, wouldja?

SS: Sure. Always keep one right under the counter. Here. (SHE PASSES LARGE OBJECT. SLIGHT CLUNK OF WOOD. SOUR STRUM. TUNING) (STRUMS)

Eyes like the morning star
           Skin white as snow,
           Barbara was a lovely girl,
           Many years ago.
           I can’t forget that girl,
The beauty that I saw.
           Here in an old cafe
           In Santa Barbara.


SS: Sounds like you're in love, Lefty.

GK: How'd you know my name?

SS: Because she left a note here for you.

GK: Who?

SS: Barbara.
GK: She did?

SS: Week ago.

GK: Where is it?


GK: My dearest Lefty, I have thought of you so much since you left and wished you would come riding back, but you haven’t, and people say it is time to move on. Twenty five years is a long time. So I am marrying Carlo. Love, Barbara.

SS: Just about made me cry when I read it, it was so sweet.

GK: You read this?

SS: Of course. Vicarious pleasure is all that some of us get anymore.

GK: So she’s gone.

SS: Twenty-five years is a long time to wait.

GK: I guess so. I just got distracted. Headed east, north, kept meaning to come back, and then I felt guilty about having not come back and I figured that when I did come back, after five and ten years, I ought to have something to show for myself, to make an impression, and I didn’t, so I waited until I did, and I never did, and now I’ve come back pretty much the same person I was back then except poorer and older and not quite as smart.



TR: You coming, pardner?

GK: I was just getting ready to come.

TR: Well, then you better come.

GK: Gotta finish my coffee.

TR: Okay. Finish it.

GK: What you lookin at me like that for? I said, I'd be with you in a moment.

TR: A moment was a while ago.

GK: Well, just hold your horses.

TR: Drink your coffee.
GK: I don't like to rush my coffee.

TR: Well, make an exception just this one time.

GK: I'll be there. You go on ahead. I'll follow.

TR: Okay, but don't keep me waiting, okay?             

SS: Barbara’s gone to L.A., if you want her address.

GK: That's south of here.

SS: Yeahp.

GK: Gotta drive those cattle to San Luis Obispo. That’s north.

SS: Yeahp.

GK: Too bad. You mind giving me a refill on this coffee?

SS: Nope.


SS: THE LIVES OF THE COWBOYS...brought to you by Hacienda Brand Corn Silk Tooth Floss.....from our ear to your mouth---- it's the best cornsilk tooth floss on the market today..(MUSIC 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).

Available now»

American Public Media © |   Terms and Conditions   |   Privacy Policy