Show: The humble Farmer

Episode: humble 2010 1128.mpg

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Episode Description:

Well received by the intelligentsia in Northern New England, this is the same old fashioned music and humorous social commentary show The humble Farmer has produced every week since April 6, 1978 for radio and now on television.

Music by: Clark Terry, Django Reinhardt, McKinney’s Cotton Pickers, Ruby Braff, Roy Brown, Gene Harris

The show is tightly scripted. Here's the humorous commentary for The humble Farmer show for the week of November 28, 2010
1. Did you see that the police just shut down a fight club in Maine? Have you ever stopped to realize that if boys are pounding each other at a fight club, they can't be ramming trees on an ATV or going through the ice on a snowmobile? They are only young once. All too soon they are enhancing their beer guts while ensconced in a stuffed chair before some important televised football game. So leave these guys alone. No matter what you do or say, your basic Maine sports enthusiast is going to warrant a call to search and rescue or at least a few lines in the newspaper.
2. While looking for something else, I stumbled on a website called and I read How to Score Free Airline Vouchers by Reserving Overbooked Flights. Because I need to lose 10 pounds I also read an article on how to lose weight. Unfortunately, I already do or don’t do most of the things that are mentioned in the article --- except walking a mile every day --- so I’m going to start doing that. Also, I just read that pumpkin seeds are not only good to eat but are good for you. Who ever heard of such a thing? Have you ever eaten pumpkin seeds? Have you ever met anyone who ate pumpkin seeds and survived? What can you tell me about pumpkin seeds? I’m humble at humblefarmer dot com.
3. If you own a newspaper or magazine, it is a good idea to print the kind of stories that your readers want to see. Because --- if you don’t you are likely to get a letter that says: “You did so and so… cancel my subscription.” Here’s an example of the kind of stories some people like to see. According to what I read in my AARP magazine, 80 percent of 1300 people surveyed said that they believed in miracles. Forty one percent said that miracles happen every day, and 37 percent said they have actually seen a miracle. We are not told where AARP found the 1300 people they consulted for their report. Some, who were still alive after being treated by a dozen doctors, counted that as a miracle. But I’ll bet you could get an altogether different percentage of people who believe in miracles should you poll university professors who teach physics. Last Christmas one of my neighbors said he’d been married to the same woman for over 50 years which was a miracle. But ---even if you were to win a lottery where the odds were 100 million to one, I would still not believe in miracles. If I were to win a lottery where the odds were 100 million to one, I suppose I’d have to, because I’ve never bought a lottery ticket.
4. Here’s one for you that I have either never heard or have forgotten. A skeptical anthropologist was cataloging South American folk remedies with the assistance of a witch doctor, who said that the leaves of a particular fern were a sure cure for any case of constipation. When the anthropologist expressed his doubts, the witch doctor looked him in the eye and said, "With fronds like these, you don't need enemas."
5. I just paid 50 cents for a brand new shiny book called Human Development because I think it is what we used to call a psychology textbook. It was published in 2007 so it is going to give us a lot of up to date interesting things to talk about. There is hardly any human behavior, good or bad, that does not have a name and this book covers many of them. Did you ever stop to realize that creativity is not strongly related to intelligence? It was in the book. And that experts are often more flexible and adaptable in their thinking. --- And that experts are more aware of what they do not know. What do you think about that? Do you have to be an expert to be aware of what you do not know? Or does it just come to you naturally with old age?
6. Did you read that the man nominated by a Republican caucus to lead the new GOP majority in the next legislative session was ordered to repay $1.6 million for overcharging the state in Medicaid reimbursements for shipments of adult diapers, latex gloves and bed liners? It looks like a new breath of fresh air is blowing through Augusta. For the first time in years Maine is going to be run like a business.
7. You probably didn’t know that Sophocles was the son of a sword manufacturer. So the Persian and Peloponnesian Wars which impoverished almost everybody left Sophocles with a comfortable income. He had time to sit around and write things that would entertain his friends. Is it not worth noting that 468 BC might have been the last time a war ever benefited anyone who wanted funding for the arts?
8. In Japan old age is a mark of status. It must be true because I just read it in my new psychology book. It says that in the United States old age is generally seen as undesirable. This registered with me when I read it because years ago radio friends Steve and Maureen wrote to me, “Thank you for vastly enriching life in Maine and the lives of Mainers. In Japan, you’d be classified as a ‘national treasure’ and given a fat government stipend.” That letter impressed me so much that I printed it on my 2004 CD #1 and I’ve never forgotten Steve and Maureen. When I was a little kid I always went around the neighborhood and visited old people. Even when I was older and was in the service or when I hitchhiked to California or Florida, I always sent postcards to old people in the neighborhood. I always liked old people. Has this changed? Is it true that the old people in your community are not valued?
9. People from away don’t understand how we do things here in Maine. I have over 100 rhubarb plants and I used to give away a lot of rhubarb. But my friends didn’t want to take it when I said it was free, so I started snapping a rubber band around a handful of it and putting it on chrome plated farm stand out by the road. You get it by the bunch, because if I ever put it out by the pound, even though it might be 8 ounces over, there would come a day when someone would howl that it was one ounce short. But a bunch is a bunch.
One day, a man from away was down in the garden watching me snap it off, cut off the huge leaf, and put the stalk on the five by five inch top of an ancient blue spring scale that I carry down to the rhubarb patch. Every once in a while I’d snatch it up, snap a rubber band around it and throw the bunch aside. The man watching said, “That scale don’t work.” Of course it works. When I can’t get no more on the top of the scale and it starts to fall off, you’ve got a bunch.
10. A while back I sent out an email to some friends, asking them to tell me about the advantages of pre heating my hot water with solar energy before running it through the boiler in the furnace. The roof on one side of my house faces east and the other side faces west. So I said I’d have half of the solar collectors on the east side to catch the morning sun and the other half of the solar collectors on the west side to collect the afternoon sun. My friend Dr. Jerry wrote right back and said, “Thinking about your roof orientation, I would disagree with the idea of putting up one collector facing east and the other facing west: one would always be in the shade, radiating part of the heat that the other one collected, unless you set up a system that would alternate automatically and only accept water from the one that was being heated.” Well --- why not? Why not set up a system that only accepts the water from the side that was being heated? You know, if you don’t know anything, you can come up with solutions to problems that stump experts. I see no reason why a person building a system like that oriented to east and west can’t get the maximum amount of heat morning AND night. To be fair, my thinking isn’t original. I got the idea from a story I read about a man who had one wife in London and another one in Paris.
11. Are we born incompetent or is incompetence thrust upon us? After 20 years of being married to Marsha, The Almost Perfect Woman, I now wonder how I survived my 20 years between 34 and 54 as a single man. I might now be compared to an appendage that has atrophied from lack of use because I no longer know how to do anything. What do you suppose would happen to me if I ran through a load of wash and hung it on the line? There is no way on this green earth that I would do it right. If you’re married to a Type A woman you know what happens when you try to help by making the bed. Yes. She tears it apart and makes it right, with the corners tucked in and the sheet folded down at the top --- even though Martha Stewart couldn’t tell the difference when the bedspread is on. You finally give up because she says it is easier for her to do it the first time than it is to tear your work apart and then do it over again. Mow the lawn and she mows it again the same evening with the blade set down to the dirt. Help her with the dishes? Only if you do want trouble in your marriage. You might have heard some of our young so-called experts bleating the mantra, “You have to work at a marriage. Marriage takes a lot of work and effort.” This is not true. I never worked at our marriage and I never will. For 20 years I have simply stood back and got out of the way.
12. Our very astute radio friend Robert in Brunswick writes to tell us that "people are getting groped in America's airports." Robert says it is no longer necessary to ride the Green Line at rush hour to feel other people's hands inside your clothing.

Thank you for considering The humble Farmer.

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Date SD Episode Video Uploaded: Wednesday, November 24, 2010 - 19:36

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