Show: The humble Farmer

Episode: humble 2010 1114.mpg


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Episode Description:

Well received by the intelligentsia in Northern New England for 29 years, 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 for television.

Music by: Clark Terry, Bix Beiderbecke, Earl Hines, Charlie Gray, Joe Venuti, Harry Allen and Denny Breau

This show contains one story told on stage by The humble Farmer.

The show is tightly scripted. Here's an approximation of the humorous commentary for The humble Farmer show for the week of November 14, 2010
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1. If I were you, I would watch out for people who aspire to garner the hearts and minds of men. Because only by going through your heart and mind can they get their hands on your wallet.
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2. Some people never learn. One evening my wife Marsha, The Almost Perfect Woman, heaped my plate with chicken and rice and gravy. My plate was so full that eating it became an onerous chore rather than a delightful gastronomical experience. I looked at it and felt full before I even started. The only way I can get a small, comfortable amount and then perhaps go back for just a smidgin of seconds is to load my plate myself. Wouldn’t you think that after 20 years I would know enough to snatch that plate from her hands? She always puts more on my plate than I can eat, but I never seem to learn. Which reminds me of something you might have recently seen on the evening news. Old men who were trying to kill each other 60 years ago are now shaking hands and talking about old times. I almost said, “Sharing memories.” I wonder if 80-year-old Civil War soldiers from both sides ever got together at Manassas or Petersburg to talk about their war. You might know about historical perspective and I’d appreciate having you tell me a little bit about it. From what little I’ve seen and been able to remember over the past 65 years, within 30 to 40 years after a war, soldiers from both sides will find an excuse to walk together over old battlefields or to talk over old times over coffee. These old guys have no reason to dislike each other because the war has served its purpose: it enabled a few people to make a lot of money. You might have also noticed that anyone who goes into a small country and trains the young folk in military ways and provides them with the latest hardware, only has to wait a year or two before a lot of people wish they hadn’t.
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3. You already know this but I’m going to say it again. Do not open attachments from people you don’t know. Some evil person has seized control of a good friend’s computer and is sending out emails to everyone in her address book. Be careful my friend. Google around and find out about this so they don’t get you. And with that public service announcement out of the way… now this … And to understand this, if it is possible for anyone to understand this at all, it would help to know that in 1988 they released a movie called Mystic Pizza. I mention this because I had never heard of Mystic Pizza. Listen. My friend Sally, who delights me with her conversation, said, “I went to see Mystic Pizza and it catapulted this woman --- what’s her name? --- Made what’s her name so famous that she’s now a household word.
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4. One of the most flattering letters I ever got from a radio friend said something like this, “Please, humble, don’t get into social issues. Everything you say makes sense and I don’t want to believe it.” --- But if I don’t occasionally try to say something that makes sense here, where else can you hear it? You have heard me say that if I do not have at least one meaningful comment for you every week, I do not deserve to sit behind this microphone. My function is to say things that are conducive to thought as well as to entertain. Last week I know I said something that you needed to hear --- two people asked to be removed from my Whine & Snivel mailing list.
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5. What happened to those fairly recent automobile commercials on television that showed a woman in an evening gown getting out of a big black shiny car in front of a huge house with white pillars in the front? The man driving the car had a handsome streak of gray in his hair. The message was unmistakable: if you want people to admire you because they think you’re paying a whopping big income tax, you’d better rush out and buy this big black car.
I can’t remember the last time I saw an ad like that, can you? Now we see little red cars on TV --- the kind of little red car that you always see pulled over to the side of the road. And there’s a policeman there by the window writing something on a tablet.
But in the TV ads there’s no hint of a policeman --- only that breath taking feeling of winding that shiny little red car over crooked country roads at 80 miles an hour. The leaves swirl beneath the wheels. And you know they must have speeded up that film because otherwise they’d go off the road. Every time I see those ads I hold my breath and wonder who would be fool enough to drive like that --- which is probably why I get no great pleasure out of reading my diary for 1955.
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6. When it’s town meeting time in Maine hundreds of thousands of dollars are spent bangety, bangety, bang, as fast as the moderator can bring his gavel down. And then everything grinds to a halt and there is a heated two hour argument over a $300 item which would buy new weapons for the constables. New weapons? One wonders if the old ones were worn out. Did the barrels burn off, red, hot and smoking?
What is the most dangerous thing these town constables have to do? They’ll tell you that it is not shooting it out with desperadoes or fishing out the people who drove 4 wheelers on thin ice. The most dangerous situation in Maine law enforcement is stepping between a man and wife who are slugging it out, toe to toe. No matter which one the officer grabs, the other one slugs him.
Anyone from Massachusetts might be puzzled at the things that happen at a Maine town meeting, but there is a simple, reasonable explanation for everything. For example, at our town meeting a man stood up and voted to cut 16 percent from the budget across the board. He moved that there be a secret paper ballot. This took an hour and a half.
While people were standing around they bought all the cookies and soda on the table at the end of the hall. Of course, the guy who made the motion to have the secret ballot owned the concession.
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7. So you’ve moved up to Maine to retire and have discovered that it is difficult for poor old retired people from away to get a fair shake here. Your taxes are certainly higher than they should be and the natives take advantage of you as you suffer along on a fixed income.
Cheer up. I can sympathize. Newcomers have felt uncomfortable here since my great great great great great grandfather, Moses Robinson, moved to Thomaston in 1734. Yes I admit it. I live only 5 miles away from where my ggggg grandfather lived in 1734. Some of us got no ambition.
So remember that you are not the first newcomer to freeze to death beside the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by hostile strangers who don’t even try to understand your problem.
You are breaking new ground, however, when you complain that your taxes are $2.37 higher than they should be on your $750,000 house.
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8. No matter what you have heard on television about how big and roomy the new pickup trucks are, pickup trucks are getting smaller and smaller. One of my friends has one of these so-called big, new American pickup trucks with a snowplow on the front, so I know what I’m talking about.
When I was in high school in 1951 I was driving the same white 1919 Model T pickup truck that you see me driving every summer. And I can distinctly remember that Roy Swanson and I could sit on either end of that seat, in complete comfort, and right there on that seat between us, there was still plenty of space for Mary Anne Pellicani and Carol Hawkins. If we scrunched up a little bit, and I’ve got to admit that then it would be crowded, I’ll bet we could have made room for John Lantz and Patty Benner.
You hear what I’m telling you about these big new pickup trucks. One cold winter night my wife and I spent a leisurely evening visiting friends. When it came time to go home it was snowing wicked and the snow had piled up outside. And my friend said, “There’s no way you can get home in this. I’ll take you down in the big truck.”
So he jumped in behind the wheel. And his wife slid in beside him, and my wife slid in beside her. And you know, I had to ride home in the back of the truck. (
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9. Did you read in the paper that anyone who kills more than 10,000 rats in Bangladesh gets a free color TV? It’s my understanding that in some of those far away mysterious countries people don’t even believe in killing flies or mosquitoes. So it’s good to learn that, elsewhere in the world, people are becoming actively involved in an anti-rat program.
Think what would happen here in Maine if you could get a free TV for turning in 10,000 rat skins. Can’t you see some enterprising Maine business people cleaning out the marijuana plants in their cellars for a rat raising operation or sneaking them into one of DeCosta’s abandoned henhouses?
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10. Did you hear about the woman who said that robbers had locked her in her car trunk? It gave her an excuse for not coming to work for the previous three days. Police became suspicious when they looked in the trunk, because there were no signs that anyone had lived there for three days.
Anyone who knows what bears do in the woods would have become suspicious. If a bear or a fox or anything else lives in your woods for three days, you will see signs.
Why didn’t that woman realize that if a person lives in the trunk of a car for three days, there should be signs? I think it’s because she’d watched too many soap operas. On soap operas, they can tie a woman to a chair for a week, and if you give her an occasional drink of water and a scrap of food, she gets along fine.
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11. When I went into the Maine State Automobile Registration office to get a paper for a friend, the large crowd of people waiting there surprised me. There was a sign that said, “Take a number.” Some days you can wait for a long long time before they get around to you.
This is a result of downsizing. You’ve heard about it. Downsizing means getting rid of useless bureaucrats to save the taxpayers money. Most people feel good when they hear about downsizing. But now we are downsized to the extent that when you call Augusta to try to find out about something, you get an answering machine, which refers you to yet another answering machine. So it is now virtually impossible to find out about anything, and when we go in to register a car we take a number and wait.
Perhaps you’re not old enough to remember when it was fashionable to laugh at the long waiting lines they had in Russia. We always saw pictures of the lines, and underneath it would say, “This is what it’s like to live under Communism.”
The next time you have to stand and wait to register your car, remember that it is downsizing government that has advanced our country to the kind of lines that the Russians were complaining about 30 years ago.
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12. The advertisement that came in my email said, “UNIVERSITY DEGREE PROGRAMS ---- Increase your personal prestige and money earning power through an advanced university degree. Eminent, non-accredited universities [there’s an oxymoron if you ever heard one] will award you a degree for only $200. Degree granted based on your present knowledge and experience. No further effort necessary on your part. Just a short phone call is all that is required for a BA, MA, MBA, or Ph.D. diploma in the field of your choice. For details, call,” such and such a number.
What you want to bet they accept counterfeit money

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Date SD Episode Video Uploaded: Thursday, December 2, 2010 - 07:52


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