November 20, 2010
Brown Theater at the Wortham Theater Center in Houston, TX

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Cowboys

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(WESTERN THEME)

SS (ANNC): THE LIVES OF THE COWBOYS…brought to you by Trail Scout, the Onboard Computer that fits into the horn of your saddle and saves you the embarrassment of getting lost. (FN ELECTRONIC VOICE: Turn left at arroyo, one quarter mile, then follow dry creek bed six-tenths of a mile to pile of boulders) And now today's exciting western adventure…… (MUSIC UNDER, HORSE WHINNY)

GK: Well, Dusty, finally made it to Houston. Handsome city.

TR: Kind of makes me nervous, coming to Texas, Lefty.

GK: You been to Texas before.

TR: Yeah, but alone. Now I'm with a guy who's carrying an ACLU card. Whose nickname is Lefty.

GK: The ACLU stands for Arizona Cowboy Life Underwriters. My insurance company.

TR: Sometimes a man can be shot in the time it takes to explain these things.

GK: Well, we'll only be here 24 hours so don't worry yourself sick about it.

TR: I'd just prefer if you rode a little ways away from me.

GK: Got to come to Texas to take the cowboy exam so we can go on calling ourselves cowboys for another ten years. Get our cowboy license. Otherwise they take away your big belt buckle and you have to keep your pants up with a length of twine.

TR: I'm aware of that.

GK: There's the Roping and Riding test, the Saloon test, and then the Six S's ----

TR: Saunter, Spit, Squint, Shoot Squat, and Stand Your Ground.

GK: Right. And then you got to get in a fistfight and throw a guy through a window or over the bar, your choice, and you got to leap off a roof onto a horse.

(WHINNY) Easy, boy. Easy……

TR: You sure we want to BE cowboys for another ten years?

GK: What else we going to do?

TR: We could become ushers in big auditoriums. Similar idea. Move em in, move em out.

GK: Yeah, but ushers have to be friendly and smile at people.

TR: Oh.

GK: Kind of lets us out.

TR: Yeah. There's no smiling on the trail. People would think you were daft.

SS: Excuse me, boys----- you here to take the cowboy examination?

TR: Yes'm. The name is Dusty.

SS: Dusty------ and you are?

GK: Lefty.

SS: (TWO BEATS) What you say your name is?

GK: I said it's Lefty.

SS: You a Democrat?

GK: None of your business.

SS: I just might make it my business. (SHE HAWKS AND SPITS)

GK: You do and I'll make it my business to teach you to mind your own business. (HE HAWKS AND SPITS)

SS: Oh yeah?

GK: Yeah.

SS: You think so?

GK: I know so.

SS: Sez who?

GK: Sez me.

SS: Okay. Good. I'm giving you an 8 on the spitting and a 9 on Standing Your Ground. And a 9 on squinting. Lemme see you saunter. (FOOTSTEPS, SAUNTERING) And squat. (JEANS STRETCHING)------ Okay----- on the squat, I like to see no more than a half-inch between the rear end and the spurs. But I'll give you a 7 on that. Okay, Dusty, want you to meet Dirty Larry for the fistfight in the saloon-----

FN (DEEP VULGAR): Ha. What kind of pitiful kneejerk tax-and-spend liberal do we have here? Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha. You puny pipsqueak. I am going to pummel and pound and puree you and put you in a mincemeat pie-----

TR: I'm gonna put my fist where your mouth is, mister. (HE RUNS AT HIM, EXCHANGE OF BLOWS, THEN FN CRY OF ALARM AS HE IS LIFTED UP AND THEN THROWN THROUGH A PLATE GLASS WINDOW) ---

SS: Okay. Real good. Lefty, want you to meet your opponent in the fistfight ----- Shirley Ann Goddess of Amarillo.

SG: Hi, cowboy. -----Come on over here. -----Let's tangle. What do you say? ----Go ahead. Throw a punch. Give it your best shot. ------ What you staring at? You never met a Valkyrie before? (SHE SINGS) Hojotoho!! Hojotoho!!! Hojotoho!!!

GK: Could I fight someone else?

SG: What's the problem? You don't like the helmet? Fine. I'll take it off. (BWANGNGNGNG OF HELMET FALLING TO FLOOR) Better? And I'll get rid of the breastplate. (BWANGNGNGNGNG) Ready?

GK: Can I just skip the saloon fight?

SG: Chicken.

GK: Not talking to you.

SG: I'm talking to you. You're no cowboy. You are all hat and no cattle. All foam and no beer. You couldn't hit the broad side of a barn if you were standing inside it. I think you need to be reformatted. You're just a lowdown two-bit nogood egg-sucking flimflammin, two-timing dimestore cowboy with CheeseWhiz for brains and a cold cold heart.

GK: You better take that back, ma'am, before you get into some serious trouble.

SG: Trouble---- Ha! You don't know what trouble is until you've tangled with a mezzo-soprano.

GK: Please….. no---- no-----

SG: Aieeeeeeeeeeee. (SG EFFORT OF LIFTING LEFTY…..GK PLEADS……SHE HURLS HIM……WINDOW BREAKAGE)

(BRIDGE AND TIME PASSAGE)

TR: Hey Lefty. ----- I been looking all over for you. How you doing, pardner? ---- Having a rough day, huh? ----- Care for a beer? ----- You hungry? I can bring you in some supper. -----

GK: Leave me alone, Dusty.

TR: Oh come on. It's not so bad. Just because a woman picked you up and threw you through a plate glass window----- come on back and take the rest of the exam.

GK: I don't think so.

TR: You're not going to get your license?

GK: Huh uh.

TR: You gonna give up your big belt buckle?

GK: Reckon so.

TR: How long you gonna sit up here in this hotel room and brood over it?

GK: Working on a song.

TR: Well, see you later.

GK: Okay. Bye.

TR: Lighten up.

GK: I'm trying. (FOOTSTEPS, DOOR SHUT)
(GUITAR STRUMS)
Darling you broke my heart
When you threw me through the window
It was the most embarrassing thing
Since I fell off my pinto.

They gave me an echocardiogram
They told me how wounded I am
They said, your atrium's bad and your ventricle too
Has somebody done something mean to you?

Darling, you broke my heart
When you threw me through the plate glass.
I was in good health, at least I was sorta
Til you busted my aorta
Cause I was in love with you, alas
Alas, alas. I was in love with alas.

(SG OFF: Help!!! Help me!!! Help!!!)

GK: What in the world? Somebody yelling out in the street---- (FOOTSTEPS, OPEN WINDOW) Why it's her. And that rattlesnake has her cornered over by the saloon---- (WHISTLE) Blaze----- over here! Hurry! (HORSE WHINNY, HOOVES GALLOP) (SG OFF: Help!!! Help!!!!) Gonna just have to jump aboard----- (HE JUMPS, LANDS IN SADDLE) Giddup. (HORSE GALLOPS) Don't move, ma'am. I'm gonna rope that rattler (TWIRLING LARIAT) so just stand still and (THROWS LARIAT) ---- there, gottim.

SG: You saved my life! How can I ever thank you?

GK: I'm thinking. Surely something will come to mind.

SG: How about we go out dancing?

GK: Suits me. You married?

SG: Not that I'm aware of. How about you?

GK: Managed to avoid it so far.

SG: There's a parson lives up the street. Saturday night. Doesn't have anything else to do.

GK: I don't mind if you don't.

SG: Kind of a brief romance but----- hey. You like me?

GK: I could, given some encouragement. The moment you threw me through that window, I felt something I never felt before.

SG: That's what love is. Somebody picks you up and makes you airborne.

GK: A transformative experience.

SG: Where you want to live after we're married?

GK: Here in Texas, of course.

SG: Hey, you're pretty bright after all.

(FOOTSTEPS IN GRAVEL)

FN (OLD MAN): I heard you were looking for the parson.

SG: Yeah, where is he?

FN (OLD MAN): Left town yesterday.

SG: How come?

FN (OLD MAN): Got discouraged.

SG: Ah. Too bad.

GK: So the wedding's off?

SG: Looks like it.

GK: Nice meeting you anyway.

SG: Same here.

TR: Hey, Lefty, been looking all over for you.

GK: Let's go, Dusty.

SS: Here's your cowboy license, mister.

GK: But I didn't pass the saloon fight test.

SS: No, but you jumped off a roof onto your horse and you rescued a lady. And she broke your heart. Broken-heart counts extra. Congratulations.

GK: Okay. Let's ride.

SG: So long cowboy.

GK: Goodbye, Valkyrie. (GIDDYUPS, HORSES GALLOP)

(THEME)

SS: THE LIVES OF THE COWBOYS…brought to you by Old Faithful Hair Gel……keeps your hair in place even when you're riding into the wind. (THEME 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»

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