North, February 9, 2013

The Fitzgerald Theater

Saint Paul, MN


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North

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(HEROIC THEME)

TR: ADVENTURES IN THE NORTH....... pitting themselves against the brutal forces of nature, northern people uncover deep feelings of pride and passion that they manage to keep hidden, except sometimes. Join us as we tell a story of one of those times.

(BLIZZARD)

GK: Are you okay?

LM: I actually think I am. Okay.

GK: Good.

LM: And you?

GK: I'm good. Did you take the Atavan?

LM: I took a beta-blocker.

GK: Ah. So you're feeling calmer.

LM: I am.

GK: You look calmer.

LM: Good. ----- So may I ask a question?

GK: Of course.

LM: How thick is the ice here?

GK: At least eighteen inches thick. Probably more.

LM: And is that all over the lake or just some of it?

GK: Whole lake.

LM: Okay. Good. And your friend has a fish house out here, right?

GK: Yep. With a sauna.

LM: A sauna out on the ice----

GK: Yep.

LM: Will there be other people or just us?

GK: Just us.

LM: Okay.

GK: You okay with that?

LM: I guess so.

GK: Good. ----- The one thing I'm not sure about is whether this satisfies the assignment in creative writing.

LM: That we write about going outside our comfort zone---

GK: ---- to go do something that scares us— I mean we're both pretty calm about this. You are.

LM: What??? I've never been in a car out on a lake before. I'm scared to death. But these beta-blockers are doing a terrific job.

GK: Okay. Well, I am scared too because I'm going to tell you something I've been meaning to tell you since we started the MFA program in September.

LM: What?

GK: I hope you don't freak out.

LM: I'm not going to freak out.

GK: You might.

LM: I promise you, I will not freak out. Just tell me already

GK: Okay. I'm in love with you.

LM: Oh you are not.

GK: I am.

LM: With me?

GK: You said you wouldn't freak out.

LM: We've been in class together since September and you never so much as looked at me.

GK: How do you know?

(ICE CRACKS)

LM: What was that?

GK: Ice cracking. It's normal. (ICE CRACKS)

LM: You're not in love with me. You're just out to have a big experience so you can write about it.

GK: I am in love with you.
(DIALING)

LM: Who are you calling?

GK: My roommate.

LM: To tell him what?

GK: If I should die out here in this snowstorm, I want someone to know that I found love. (KEYPAD DIALING, PAUSE. RING AT OTHER END. VOICE AT OTHER END) Dave? Hi. It's me. I just wanted to let you know that I'm out on the lake with Lorena and we're in love.---- (VOICE AT OTHER END) You're what? (VOICE) Well, I have no idea where it is. (VOICE) Well, I didn't take it. Believe me. Okay? Bye. (VOICE) (HANG UP) ----- He's busy looking for the bottle opener.

(CAR SLOWS AND STOPS)

LM: Why are we stopping?

GK: We're here. (DOOR OPEN, FOOTSTEPS IN SNOW) This is the sauna here. And that is the fish house over there. (KNOCKS) Anybody home? Hello??? (DOOR OPEN) (FOOTSTEPS) Good. Nobody here. I'll start up the sauna. (FLAMES IN STOVE BURNER)

GK: Well, here we are, alone in a snowstorm, Lorena. You and me. Two writers who've crossed the boundary of fear and ice and now we're going to do something we can write about. Sit here in the sauna and then go outside and roll in the snow.

LM: Sounds like a plan.

GK: And now it's 170 degrees in here, babes. I'm going to take off my clothes, even though nudity is one more thing that terrifies me.

LM: Why?

GK: The first time I went naked with strangers was in 7th grade gym class and on my way into the shower room I slipped on the floor and fell and people laughed and I've never forgotten that.

LM: It's completely dark in here. What's to be afraid of?

GK: Promise you won't laugh. (ZIPPER) There. I did it.

LM: Well, here goes. I don't even know you and I'm going to take off my clothes. Sit in a sauna on the ice and then jump into the snow. Take a deep breath, Lorena----- (ZIPPER) Okay. Done.

GK: A hundred and seventy degrees. Feels good.

LM: It does.

GK: Are you ready?

LM: If you are.

GK: When I write about this, I might change the dialogue a little bit. Okay?

LM: That's fine.

GK: Is something wrong? What are you looking at?

LM: Looking at the nametag on your jacket.

GK: What about it?

LM: Your name is Walt?????

GK: Right.

LM: I thought you were Gaylord.

GK: Gaylord? Gaylord Montgomery?

LM: The one who wrote that beautiful story about a man waiting for a train and he weeps and the girl sees his tears and she decided to get on the train too. I guess I got the two of you confused.

GK: That wasn't my story. I wrote the story about the sparrow with low self esteem who stayed out on the branch one winter night and he fell to the ground and was run over by the snowplow and in that instant he was changed into a mailman walking his route with a letter to a woman named Sally telling her that her lymphoma had cleared up.

(A BEAT)

LM: Oh right. (A BEAT) Sorry. Walt. I thought you were Gaylord.

GK: So you liked his story-----

LM: I did.

GK: Huh.

LM: So we're not going to go out and roll in the snow?

GK: I guess the moment has passed.

LM: You okay?

GK: Yeah, I'm okay. You okay?

LM: Sure.

GK: Okay. Good.

LM: Yeah. How about the writing assignment?

GK: How about we add some wild carnivorous wolves. (WOLVES) Their pale yellow eyes glaring at us through the open door of the sauna that the snowstorm smashed into.

LM: But it's supposed to be an essay. Non-fiction.

GK: How's she going to know? We just have to make it good.

LM: We could add some demented rural people. (SFX) A demented couple. They walk in and see us naked and they freak out.

TR (OLD MAN):: Shame. We have found you in your iniquity and God is sending judgment down on you.

SS (CRONE): Evil. Naked both of you. You are pure evil. Heinous evil.

TR (OLD MAN):: You have crossed the boundary of decency.

SS (CRONE): Inappropriate. That's what you are. Inappropriate.

TR (OLD MAN):: You don't deserve to live.

SS (CRONE): We have come to exercise the Lord's judgment on you. Get the stones, Jonas.

TR (OLD MAN):: Got the stones right here, Esther. Got nice sharp ones too. (CHUCKLES)

GK: That's good.

LM: Let's get dressed and go back to my place and write it. (ICE CRACKS, OFF): What was that?

GK: Nothing. It's fine. How's your beta blockers?

LM: Fine. I'm okay.

GK: Good. Let's get dressed. Wait----

LM: What?

GK: No, never mind. Let's get dressed.

(THEME)

TR: ADVENTURES IN THE NORTH.......pitting themselves against the brutal forces of nature, northern people uncover deep feelings of pride and passion that they manage to keep hidden, except sometimes. Join us next time as we tell a story of one of those times.

(THEME)

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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