Banks, October 27, 2012

Elliott Hall of Music, Purdue University

West Lafayette, IN

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Listen (MP3)

GK: It's sort of painful for me to come to Purdue because ----- well, it's a long story ---- I graduated from college with a major in English and within a few days I realized that my career options were rather limited. Either I could become an English teacher----

TR: As we deconstruct the myth of Winnie the Pooh and examine the post-modernist gender emergence of Piglet, we must face up to the tyranny of Christopher Robin as a colonialist figure-----

GK: Or I could write trashy fiction----

FN: The moment her father disappeared into the kitchen, Megan threw herself at me and thrust her tongue in my ear. Stop, I said, stop.

SS: I won't stop. Not ever. I'm crazy about you, Ralph. Rip my clothes off. Ravish me.

FN: But we've been married for twenty-eight years, darling. I don't even know what that means.

SS: I don't care. Do it. Just do it. Or I'll do it. (STING)

GK: I didn't care for either of those and so I chose the option they don't tell you about in school, which is bank robbery. (RUNNING FEET, ALARM BELL, GUNSHOTS, RUNNING) Made a good living, knocking off small-town banks, part-time work, no health benefits, but that's okay. I wore a cape and wrote my stick-up note on the back of a Shakespeare sonnet and the newspapers referred to me as the Bard of Bank Robbery and I had a beautiful woman to drive my car. I found her on Craigslist. ----- Let's go, Kathy. Step on it. (SQUEAL OF TIRES, ACCEL CAR)

SS: How much you get, Jack?

GK: We'll count it later. Let's go. Turn left here. (SQUEAL OF TIRES, ACCEL) Look out for those chickens. (HONK, CHICKEN FLURRY, ACCEL) (BRIDGE) And we'd stop at a little Mom & Pop motel and get a cabin and open up a cold soda (SFX) and she'd count the take. (SS MURMURING NUMBERS, FLIPPING BILLS)....

SS: Twenty-five thousand, four hundred, and eighty seven, plus two rolls of quarters.

GK: Not bad.

SS: That gives us almost two-hundred thousand for the month, Jack.

GK: Good. We'll keep heading east, get to Indiana tomorrow, Ohio next week.

SS: How much longer we going to go on robbing banks?

GK: Why stop now?

SS: I'd sort of like to settle down.

GK: Where?

SS: I saw a six-bedroom mansion advertised in West Lafayette. Formal dining room and 30-foot living room with a big fireplace and a terrace with a little fountain and garden and a heated pool. Two-hundred grand.

GK: We'll buy it.

SS: Really????

GK: But we'll have to knock over four more banks to pay for the furniture and utilities. So off we went ----(RUNNING FEET, ALARM BELL, GUNSHOTS, SQUEAL OF TIRES) One in Iowa. One in Missouri. Two in Illinois. The last one was in Champaign and I handed the bank teller my sonnet.

TR: Oh wow. You're the famous bank robber who writes sonnets----
"When in disgrace with fortune and men's eyes,
I all alone beweep my outcast state,
It makes me feel better to go and larcenize
A bank so go ahead and make my day." ----Wow. That is so cool.

GK: Thanks, pal. Just put the money in the bag, wouldja?

TR: Would you mind autographing the poem?

GK: Aw come on, kid----

TR: And sign it to my mom, Eileen. E-i-l-e-e-n. She's a big fan of yours.

GK: Okay. (FAST WRITING, PEN) There.

TR: And could you date it, too.

GK: Okay. (FAST WRITING) Good.

TR: And would you mind taking a picture with me?

GK: Picture of me and you?

TR: Yeah. You and me.

GK: How about you put the money in the bag, first?

TR: It'll just take a minute. Stand right there.

GK: Okay.

TR: Hey, Jeannie, come and take our picture.

GK: Come on, pal. Let's not make a production of it.

SS (CLERK): Oh wow. The bank robber.

TR: The Bard of Bank Robbery.

SS (CLERK): Oooohhhh. Can I have a sonnet?

TR: Stand right behind me, okay?

SS: How do I work this camera?

TR: Just point and shoot.

GK: Speaking of shooting, I really have to go.

SS: Isn't the light supposed to flash?

TR: No, just look in the viewfinder and wait until the square appears, that means its in focus.

SS: I don't see it.

TR: You've got your finger over the lens.

GK: Listen I've got to go. (RUNNING FOOTSTEPS) (ALARM) Let's go, babes.....

SS: Any trouble? What took you so long?

GK: I'll tell you later. (SIREN) Oh oh. Cops on our tail. Step on it, Kathy. (CAR SCREECHES AROUND CORNER) I'll open up the window and toss some carpet tacks out on the road. (SFX) There. (COP CAR SKIDS, COP CAR CRASHES, SIREN STOPS) That took care of him. Nice driving. Look out----

SS: What?

GK: Up ahead. Police barricade. Step on it.

SS: Step on it???!!!!


SS: Is not the wrong way?

GK: You're supposed to go down Chestnut to Walnut and then pick up highway 22.

SS: Okay. Whatever. (CAR MAKES HARD U-TURN, TIRES SQUEAL) Oh oh. Coppers. Behind us. (SIREN BEHIND)

GK: Oh boy. We rob a bank and then get arrested for an illegal U-turn. Step on it. (CAR ACCEL) Looks like I'm going to have to drop that 500-pound anvil in the road. Which button is the anvil ejector?

SS: Beats me.

GK: One of these is the buzzard release and the other one is the anvil ejector. Well, I'll try this. (BOINGGGGG. WHOOSH) Yeah, there goes the anvil. (WHANGGGG LANDS ON ROAD. CRASH OF SQUAD CAR) Well, that took care of him

SS: So where's the money?

GK: I didn't get it.

SS: You didn't get it? (SQUEAL OF BRAKES) (PAUSE) What do you mean, you didn't get it?

GK: I didn't have time.

SS: I sat out there on the street for ten minutes and you didn't have time? What were you doing in there?

GK: I'm sorry.

SS: I'm sorry isn't good enough.

GK: Well, what do you want me to do?

SS: Get out of the car, Jack. Get out. (CLICK OF PISTOL)

GK: Kathy-----

SS: Get out of the car. Nice and slow.

TR (RICO): Hi pal.

GK: Who's he?

SS: Get in, Tony. ---- This is Tony, Jack. Tony went to Purdue. He knows about explosives. That's what I need in this business.

GK: But Kathy----we've been together for years---- we were going to buy a house together-----in West Lafayette.

SS: I already bought it, Jack. And I'm living there with Tony.

TR (RICO): Tough luck, pal. Let go of the door handle.


GK: So that's why it's painful to come here. Because Kathy and Rico live a few blocks from here in that six-bedroom mansion with the 30-foot living room and the heated pool. And me----- on the road with a radio show, staying at the Clover Leaf Motel out on the freeway, next to Burger King, listening to the semis going by at 3 and 4 and 5 a.m. Show business. Not as glamorous as you might think. But you do learn a few things. And I'm happy to pass them on to you.


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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