Show: The humble Farmer

Episode: humble 2013 0512

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Episode Description:

The humble Farmer TV show for May 12, 2013

Thank you for looking at: “An Old Maine Man Plants His Garden.”

56 minutes. This show includes a new 3.42 minute clip of Denny Breau playing at Little Bar in Goodland, Florida.

Well received in Northern New England for 35 years, this is the same old fashioned music and humorous social commentary show that has delighted young and old alike every week since April 6, 1978 for radio --- and now for television.

Most of the video over the music is of humble putting in his radishes.

Music by: Clark Terry, Fletcher Henderson, Stan Getz, Gene Harris, Dave McKenna, and Denny Breau.

humble is joined again on camera by his young friend, Sylvia, whose smile is now generating much of humble’s fan mail.

All of this is tame fare, indeed, for viewers expecting someone to be shot, arrested or blown up.

The show is tightly scripted. It starts out with humble’s 1919 Model T coming into the dooryard. The show ends, as usual, with the Keystone Cops driving a car off the end of a dock.
The humorous and/or informative commentary that humble delivers between the songs is approximated below:
May 12, 2013
1. I am addicted to the comments in the blog of our local newspaper. I have to read these comments every day. They are the voice of a huge class of Maine people that you are likely to encounter only on your local fairgrounds after 10 P. M. on warm summer nights as they eat fried dough and slurp chocolate shakes. For example, one of them writes: "I have four piercings, a tattoo, and often dye my hair." It is only a matter of time before any Maine blog morphs into a Maine dating agency.
2. If you read your newspaper’s daily blog, much of what you read in the letters is name calling. Although I’ve never researched name calling and found out the reason people do it, I’ve always thought that name calling was indicative of a feeling of inferiority. It’s pretty hard to hate the drunk sleeping on the street because he’s on the bottom of the social ladder, but some people might dislike anyone who has more snowmobiles or a bigger house or more education than they do. I’m going to think about this. You can help us here. Why do people call other people names?
3. This week I cut down a couple of huge cherry trees that had died on the stump and I used my chainsaw to peel off all the soft rotted wood on the outside. And I got to thinking that you could compare me with a half rotted cherry tree. Once you get it cleaned up it will get you through a cold night.
4. I was telling my friend Dan about the Common Ground Fair. Everybody goes. Everyone enjoys watching the little dogs that herd the sheep. Dan said, “Ugh. Don’t ever get a border collie.” He said that he was once with a bunch of dog walkers out in the woods and without noticing what had happened the border collies had herded all their owners together. They were all so close they were touching --- shoulder to shoulder and chest to chest. I hope you lonely young people in big cities are listening.
5. You’ve heard me tell about the very determined vacuum cleaner salesman who knocked on a door down Harpswell way. The woman who answered said that she didn’t have time to look at any vacuum cleaners, but the salesman stuck his hand in through the door and emptied a small can of desiccated cow manure on her carpet. He said that if his machine didn’t pick up every molecule of that cow manure, he would eat what was left. And the woman said, “I’m glad to hear it. Central Maine shut off my power yesterday.”
6. There is a new thing called solar energy that some of us have discovered and are presently using to slash our oil and electric bills. Although I appeared in Maine's first solar energy commercials that Sandra Dickson produced in 1987, I didn't really understand the money saving power of solar energy at the time. I thought you had to be rich to have solar hot water heaters. I didn't know that you could build them in your own barn. I needed someone to tell me that it could be done and how to do it. When George W. Bush started his Iraq war I knew the price of gasoline and heating oil was going to skyrocket, and it was then I asked my learned friends to show me how to build solar hot water heaters and PV panels. I now spend most of my working day in my office in my solar radiant heated cellar. Yes. It is possible to build your own solar collectors which heat your home. Or your cellar. It is so simple that an 8th grade student with two thumbs can do it. You just have to have someone who has done it show you how easy it is. On the side of my house I have 8 solar panels which I made. The glass came from old doors I got on the dump. My cellar floor is an insulated slab of concrete with pipes in it. The sun heats the liquid in the solar collectors outside. When the liquid in the solar collectors gets hot enough, a thermostat starts the pump which circulates the hot liquid through the pipes in the cellar floor. My solar hot water heaters heat my domestic hot water as well as my office in the cellar. Why doesn't everyone in Maine jump on this money saving solar energy bandwagon? Well, many patriotic Americans would rather pay $2,000 a winter for oil than put up solar hot water heaters and look like a whining liberal.
7. For over 35 years many people listened to my radio program, not for the music but for the occasional scraps of wisdom that I would unleash in some of my better moments and I am about to unleash some wisdom now.
One morning, before cutting down some birch trees, I put some gas and some oil in my chainsaw. There is a hole on the front where you pour the gas and a hole on the back where you pour the oil. It is impossible to get confused and mix them up because you have been chain sawing wood for over 60 years and there is a picture of an oil can beside the oil hole and a picture of a gas pump beside the gas hole. But one day I put the gas in the oil hole and the oil in the gas hole and when I got over to the birch trees and started my chainsaw it very quickly stopped. Which is when I looked in the oil hole and saw that, sure enough, I’d put gas in the oil tank. If you have never had this happen to you, sooner or later it probably will when you get old. There is nothing unusual about a man getting confused like this when he gets old and you should not be ashamed when it happens to you. And now the wisdom part you’ve been waiting for. Don’t tell your wife about it unless you want to sleep alone out in the garage.
8. I am weak. It is not a pleasant thing to say, but I have to admit it. I am one of the unfortunates who functions better after an infusion of mind altering drugs. Why don’t I fight it? I do, for the first four or so hours of every day, but around 10 A. M. when I pass through the kitchen I cast a sidelong glance at the stainless steel pot with the inviting black top. And all too often, I stand there and curse my weakness as I pour the life-giving liquid into a cup decorated with sheep playing musical instruments. It takes a while for the dope to do its thing, but suddenly --- without knowing why, I’m looking at the expensive Rockport loafers on my feet and I feel good about myself because I’m wearing a nice looking pair of rich-kid shoes. My heart swells with gratitude to Helen Hier who, upon her husband’s passing, gave me hundreds of dollars worth of his warm jackets and fancy rich-kid shoes. Because my shoes will outlast me, as will most everything else I’m wearing unless an exasperated wife cuts it up for rags, I think to myself that I’ll be grateful to Helen Hier for the rest of my life. But then I realize that even though I’m suddenly motivated to hang up the light by the shower that my wife Marsha has been wanting for two years, I’m still me, and that nothing has changed except the molecules of the drug drink that have somehow lit a bonfire in my brain. And I am once again reminded why every employer wanting to turn a profit keeps a boiling pot of coffee in the employees’ lounge.
9. My friend Heather Grills says, "I have 4800 messages in my in box. 1800 unread" As Vito Corleone asked, "How did things ever get so far?" I just had to dump over 4,000 messages out of my other email program before I could mail out my weekly Whine and Snivel newsletter. Of course I abandoned sifting through them long ago and told friends that I only saw letters addressed to me at the humble farmer at gmail dot com. Only half a dozen junk emails get through there in a day and I tell the machine to delete anything else that comes from that address. The gmail is what tells me that you have posted things on my Facebook page. Don't ask me how it knows. We have the ability to communicate with friends quickly and economically but the thing gets so jammed up with email from people trying to sell us something that it becomes unusable --- just like the roads in Los Angeles.
Who hasn’t heard of Oil of Olay? There is no question in my mind, that if a woman uses Oil of Olay between the ages of 30 and 50, at the age of 50 she will have the same complexion she had at 30 --- as long as she doesn’t smoke and has never exposed her skin to the sun. I present to you this evidence that women who use Oil of Olay do so with the understanding that it is not a panacea and that eventually more drastic steps will be necessary. Please listen closely. A woman who was in a remarkable state of preservation recently sat at our breakfast table. One wondered why this woman was traveling with a man old enough to be her father, until it was revealed, with fanfare, that she was 55 years old. I was not surprised that anyone 55 could look so much younger, and to prove my point I brought up the web page that contains pictures of my Radio Friends and showed her a picture that was taken of me when I was 55. I looked like a little kid. I told her that she would soon discover, as I did, that there comes a day when crow’s feet do come home to roost. I told her that I didn’t know exactly when it happened, but on one quiet, unannounced day within the past 15 years I suddenly looked my age. And that woman smiled at me and said, “Well, that’s why they made paper bags.”
A few years ago one of Marsha’s grandchildren was under my care for an hour. I was scared. The child could not talk. What could I do if she wanted something and how would I know what she wanted. But I learned something from this unique experience. The child went into my library and peeled the dust jackets off some Art In America books and was eating them. I couldn’t believe it. The child ate paper. How, I wondered, could any child cultivate a taste for paper? But then I remembered that earlier in the day I’d seen her parents feed her an artichoke
Thank you for considering The humble Farmer.

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Date SD Episode Video Uploaded: Monday, June 10, 2013 - 05:20

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