The Lives of the Cowboys
SS: THE LIVES OF THE COWBOYS.....brought to you by Lube In a Tube ...(SQUIRT OF GREASE) for hardware or your hair or to tenderize your beefsteak, Lube In A Tube. It makes everything a little more manageable.
GK: Austin, Texas, Dusty. A sight for sore eyes.
TR: I'll say. Were those naked people we saw back there in that park?
GK: I wouldn't know, pardner.
TR: I believe they were. Interesting.
GK: Well, they weren't cowboys, I know that.
TR: Some of them were girls.
GK: They can see by your outfit that you are a cowboy. Without it, you are just a pitiful older person with poochy skin. Let's go into this saloon and reconnoiter, what you say? (WHOAS, HORSES STOP)
TR: Cactus Jack. Interesting name for a saloon. (FOOTSTEPS, DOOR OPEN) (PIANO JAZZ VERSION OF CAMPTOWN, PAIR OF FOOTSTEPS ACROSS FLOOR)
GK: Not too crowded. Interesting art on the walls. Abstract depression, I'd say.
SS: Evening, gentleman. Welcome to C.J.'s. What can I get for you?
TR: I'd have a glass of whiskey. No ice, no water, no lemon. Just whiskey.
SS: You want a designer whiskey or an ordinary whiskey?
TR: What's the difference? I want a whiskey that'll make me fall down on the floor.
SS: Well, they both will, but the designer whiskey will make you feel creative on your way down.
TR: I'll take the ordinary.
SS: And you?
GK: I would like a recent vintage cranberry juice.
SS: I'll see what I've got.
(FOOTSTEPS, AND STOP)
RB: Evening, boys. Welcome to Austin. The name is Benny. Benny Raison D'Etre.
TR: Raison D'Etre? So you're French.
RB: Naw. My real name is Ray Benson. But when you're in the real estate business, it helps to have a fancy name.
GK: Wasn't there a singer named Ray Benson?
RB: Different Ray Benson. Great big old guy with a ponytail. Sixty-two. I'm 37 and I weigh 154 and I'm a vegetarian and a black belt in Kundalini yoga.
GK: So how's the real estate market in Austin, Mr. Raison D'Etre.
RB: It's fabulous. A gold mine. I got out of the cattle business in 1982 and now I'm worth 78 million dollars and I only work three months out of the year and the rest of the time I spend in Paris or Rome.
TR: Wow. How'd you do it?
RB: Very simple. I sell real estate in March and April, and then I buy it back in August.
GK: Aha. How ingenious.
RB: People come for the South by Southwest Festival, Austin is in springtime, they fall in love with it, they'll pay a half-million for a renovated chicken coop. In August, it's so hot your underwear hurts, and they sell it back to me for $15,000 and a bottle of whiskey. Speaking of which----- Cynthia, pour me a Marcel Proust.
TR: What's that?
SS: It's gin, grenadine, calvados, 7-up, blue Jell-o, a sliced banana, a spoonful of chili, and a ladyfinger.
RB: Make me a double.
GK: So you spend time in Paris, huh?
RB: Yeah. Love Paris. The Riviera. All of it. I own all the French rights to Willie Nelson. Willie is enormous over there. Earns millions a year.
GK: Willie Nelson is big in France.
RB: Listen to this----- (MUSIC, "ON THE ROAD AGAIN")
TR (WILLIE, SINGS):
Tout ne sur la route.
La vie que j'aime, c'est faire de la musique avec mes amis.
(SLOW SLIDING FOOTSTEPS, RATTLE OF METAL)
GK: Who's this coming?
SS: Oh, this is Cactus Jack.
GK: He the owner?
SS: Used to be, and then he got caught up in the gun movement.
DR (OUT OF BREATH): Hey, Benny. Good to see you. (FOOTSTEPS, AS HE EASES ONTO A STOOL WITH GREAT EFFORT AND SITS DOWN WITH A SERIES OF CLUNKS) Hey, piano player----! (GUNSHOT)
RD: Yes, sir.
DR: What's with the wimpy music---- play the song like it's supposed to be played.
RD: Yes, sir. (CAMPTOWN RACES UPTEMPO)
DR: That's better. ---- Who're you?
GK: The name's Lefty.
DR: I trust your name don't refer to your politics. We got enough of those in Austin.
GK: It refers to the fact that my favorite singer is Lefty Frizzell.
DR: You a songwriter then?
GK: I am. I just wrote a song, "I'd rather ride me a good buckin' bronc than eat escargot with a Sauvignon Blanc".
DR: I am taking a liking to you already. Bring me some rotgut, Cynthia. Here----- give me the bottle. Don't need an opener. (GUNSHOT, GLASS CRUNCH) There. Little ground glass don't hurt any.
SS: You look like you gained some weight, Cactus Jack.
DR: Well, I may have. But I am carrying eleven pistols on me right now and sixteen hand grenades strapped to my waist. In my back pockets are three tear-gas canisters and in my underwear is a rocket launcher. I got an assault rifle fastened to each leg and a smoke bomb in each armpit. Wrapped around my body, next to my skin, are belts holding 400 rounds of ammo.
TR: That's a lot to be carrying.
DR: When I am fully-armed, I weigh approximately 472 pounds.
SS: How do you ever manage to walk?
DR: It ain't easy But if we don't exercise our rights, we lose our rights.
RB: Must be painful for you to live in a place like Austin where people don't care that much about guns.
DR: Pains me every day. I walk down the street and people look at me like I was a freak. Men riding around on bikes in little thongs who got tattoos all over em, they look at me and shake their heads. I don't get it.
RB: You need to get out in the country, Jack. Out where big government doesn't put up traffic lights with signs telling you to walk or don't walk.
DR: You're absolutely right, Benny.
RB: If big government can tell you to walk, then they can tell you where to spit......tell you what you cannot drink while driving.....
DR: It's an outrage, I tell you.
RB: I got a little ranch out on Pismo Lake. Ten acres. Two bedrooms with barn attached. I could let it go for a couple million.
DR: How about three-quarters of a million?
DR: So I'll be free out there?
RB: Free as the wind.
SS: Oh oh, look out. Here come the Baptists.
FN (PREACHER): O Lord, I am here in this den of iniquity. Cleanse it O Lord and keep my heart pure for thy service. And this pathetic wretch I see before me now, heal him O Lord of his filthiness ---- (SNIFFS) what kind of bourbon is that, Cynthia?
SS: It's a 1989 rotgut, Preacher. You want some?
FN (PREACHER): Strengthen me O Lord against temptation ---- help me turn my back on this temptress, O Lord ----- just a little, Cynthia. Just for a mouthwash.
(FN SIP AND SERIES OF WHOOPS)
FN (PREACHER): Praise the Lord who giveth us the corn and distill in us a more perfect love of thee. (GULPS) Amen! Amen! Thank you, Lord. (STING, AND BRIDGE)
TR: Interesting town, Austin. Giddup. (HORSES HOOVES)
That wasn't a bad song you had there, pardner. The bucking bronc and the Sauvignon Blanc. Maybe someday your ship is going to come in.
GK: Only ship that comes in for me is hardship, Dusty. So who's going to get the hotel room and who's going to sleep out with the herd?
TR: You better go out to the cattle. You're better at singing them to sleep.
GK: I guess so. See you in the morning.
SS: THE LIVES OF THE COWBOYS........brought to you by Lube in a Tube (SQUORT) .....for hair or beefsteak or hardware...(MUSIC OUT)
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).