Show: The humble Farmer

Episode: humble 2011 0925.mpg


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Episode Description:

Well received in Northern New England for over 30 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.

Good news. This week a man told me his 3-year-old grandson loves The humble Farmer TV program. TV is great. I could never have captured the kid with my radio program.

Music by: Clark Terry, Denny Breau, Django Reinhardt, Benny Goodman, McKinney’s Cotton Pickers, Louis Armstrong and Scott Hamilton.

This show contains 2.07 minutes of guitarist Denny Breau live on stage on Monhegan.

Much of the video over the music shows humble bringing seaweed home from Clark Island for his garden. Tame fare, indeed, for viewers expecting someone to be shot, arrested or blown up.

The show is tightly scripted. It starts out with a clip of The humble Farmer throwing a blanket over a No Trespassing sign and driving across his friend’s lawn to load seaweed into his truck. It ends, as usual, with the Keystone Cops driving a car off the end of a dock.

Here's the approximate humorous commentary for The humble Farmer show for the week of September 25, 2011.
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A woman I met down in Portland airport told me that her father traveled a lot. The night before he’d go anywhere he’d put out a pile of the clothes he figured he’d need to take with him. In another pile he put all the money he figured he’d need to take. The next morning he’d take half the clothes in the pile and twice the amount of money in the other pile, and it always came out just right.
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2. What is bravery? What is patriotism? Do their definitions change from year to year and from country to country? Are you brave if you suddenly jump into some volatile situation and save somebody? You might argue that if you didn’t have time to think about what you were doing, like rescuing your wife or little sister from a raging stream or a pit bull, it’s not bravery. Are you brave if you are forced to engage in a senseless and dangerous endeavor? You might point out that the really brave are those with the courage to walk away from meaningless but life-threatening situations. Do you admire brave men? Hitler was decorated for bravery four times. No one can deny that he was the ultimate patriot. And how does one define patriotism today? You’ve read Carl Sandburg’s book about Abraham Lincoln’s war years. You will recall that an old rowdy said to the President, “I feel patriotic.” Lincoln said, “What do you mean by feeling patriotic?” “Why, I feel as if I wanted to kill somebody or steal something.”
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3. We read that the early Christians rejected most anything Roman, including the value of cleanliness. They considered it unsaintly to be clean, sinful to display material wealth. "An early Christian writer said “All is vanity.” St. Benedict pronounced that "to those that are well, and especially for the young, bathing shall seldom be permitted." In a history of Roman and English plumbing you can read that a 4th-century pilgrim to Jerusalem would brag that she had not washed her face for 18 years so as "not to disturb the holy water" used at her baptism. And now, much to your surprise, I’m not going to give you any present examples of local saints. I have to live here, too, you know.
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4. Please tell me if you know who wrote these Black fly Limericks. Was it Dr. Jerry down Machias way?
A geneticist down in Port Jervis
Hatched a black fly that’s making me nervous.
He flexes his muscles
and sucks red corpuscles
for the Internal Revenue Service.

There’s a swarm of black fiends in the sky:
They’re a cross between vampire and fly.
Though the natives all say,
“They’re immune to our spray,”
Drive a stake through the heart, and they die!

And here’s something that was sent to me by Guy in Searsport.

In Belfast when blackflies are thicker than thieves
And the mud's season's crop is way up past your knees
Natives don't bicker,
They're stoics, for sure
They're perfectly sanguine,
They seen it before.
When newcomers arrive on Maine's rocky shores,
They tally their bites and reckon their scores.
They curse mother nature.
They call her to task.
While she breeds mosquitoes,
Cause black flies don't last.

So if you come to Maine expecting it kind
'Life as it should be' like you seen on the sign,
Well brother don't come in the Spring cause it's cruel,
And Summer's no bargain because it's too cool.
And Autumn's too wet, and Winter's too cold.
And there's deer in the garden and moose in the road.
The mountains are too high, the natives are surly
The ocean's too cold and the winter comes early.
So take my advice and go someplace sunny.
We won't miss you much, but we will miss your money.

5. And it came to pass that a woman asked me how many pixtels my camera had. I laughed. Pixtels are in the same class as cell phones and Ipods as far as I'm concerned. I think I'm too old to learn about Pixtels and Ipods --- unless, of course, I could find a use for them. Lately people have been coming into my house with strange plastic things that I have never seen before. Gail, who is studying Italian, has a plastic thing that she can talk to in English and it will repeat what she said in Italian. She really gets a kick out of this machine because sometimes the machine is wrong and says something dirty. I think I know what a SUV is. I know what a suburban is because one day I saw suburban in chrome letters on the back of a big station wagon.
Did you realize that life is getting very complicated?. If you come by my house you might find an Ipod on the Internet, if that is where they are found, and show me what it is. It wasn’t all that long ago I went over to Waldoboro to see Sam Pennington at the Antique Digest so Sam could show me the Internet for the first time. I also remember going to Boston where I saw a television set and TV program for the first time. I also remember my father putting in a flush toilet so we didn’t have to go outside in the shed and I remember the first time I used a telephone. I was probably in the 6th or 7th grade when we got a telephone and I remember who I called and what I said the first time I used it. I remember before we had an icebox we kept milk and butter down cellar where it was cool. So I've learned how to live with most of the new things that have turned up in my life from time to time, but the rate of new things seems to be speeding up and the terms and the function of many of the new plastic gizmos that people carry into my house seem rather fuzzy and vague. If you don’t know about pixtels and Ipods please tell me if there is any reason why I should. I’m humble at humble farmer dot com and and if you don’t have email like the rest of us I think you’d better get in step with the times.
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6. The last time I read something that made me raise an eyebrow. It said, “Fossil fuels like oil and coal continue to cause air pollution and global climate change. Eventually, these natural resources could be depleted.” I think this was put out by some organization promoting windmills. You see a lot of windmills in Holland and I have a third cousin in Sweden who sells huge wind turbines. But what caught my eye was the same thing that caught your ear: “These natural resources could be depleted.” The word is not could. The word is will. There are people who are looking at the end of our local oil reserves and everyone in the world knows what they are now doing about it. But that will only put off the end for what, 100 years or so? 200 years? 300 years? Whatever the date is, it is finite, and there will eventually be a day of reckoning when there ain’t no more oil. But until then, you can bet your booties that solar power or wind power or the power of the tides will not be used. First, the last cent of profits will be squeezed out of oil. No businessman in his right mind is going to want a society that runs on solar power --- unless he could run it through a metered filter so he could charge you for it.
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7. Do you ever have the feeling that everything that was good and familiar has faded away into the mists of time and left you far behind? Do you sometimes realize that you really don’t know what’s going on any more? Let me cite a typical example. Marsha’s youngest daughter, who is willing to teach here in Maine, which is probably 47th from the top when it comes to teachers’ salaries in the United States, spent four days with us. She brought her children with her and the several hundred pounds of accoutrements that would enable two children to survive four days in Mimi’s house. Outside of her willingness to teach in a state that pays teachers little more than a cotton picker in the antebellum South, my wife’s youngest daughter seems to be extremely bright. But --- even so --- I knew that she would forget something when she left. Out of the hundreds of items she carted into our home in a dozen or so containers, she had to leave something behind. I’m an old man which means I’m always right, and sure enough, the kid wasn’t half way down the driveway before I saw her weird looking little cell phone. So I gave myself a smug little self-righteous pat on the back, and said to Marsha, “Look at this. She forgot her cell phone.” Marsha didn’t even look up. She said, “What are you talking about. That’s the remote to the DVD.”
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8. Did you know that doctors don’t have the privilege of serving on juries? If this is true, doesn’t it make you wonder how a doctor accused of beating her husband gets a jury of her peers? Now, because someone argued that pets should not be deprived of their care giver, veterinarians don’t have to serve on juries and my cows are glad. Plumbers have to serve on juries because sewage that backs up into your bathroom is not as important as the health of your neighbor’s cat. Although I have been in a jury pool several times I have never served on a jury. I would like to serve on a jury, just to learn about the process. I would like to serve on a jury, just so I could tell you about it. I’m sure one trial would give me enough material for two or three shows. But every time I’m in the jury pool, either I used to date the mother of the defendant’s lawyer or else the district attorney admits that he has played fiddle in a band in my back yard. Are you listening? It gets even more difficult, because if that doesn’t keep me from being scratched from the list, the judge usually asks, “Will you please stand if you feel that you would not be able to have an objective opinion in a case where alcohol was involved.” And I might be the only person out of 120 who stands, which, as you well know, eliminates me from probably 95 percent of the cases under consideration. Yes. If you think about it you will realize that even a very devious person with only marginal intelligence can avoid mistakes or capture --- unless he’s drunk. The last time I was in the jury pool, we were asked to stand if we or a close family member had been involved in an incident involving alcohol. Twenty or so stood. The judge asked one man, “Was it you or a family member who was involved in this incident,” and the man said, “It was me and I still think I was innocent.”
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9. Do you watch wrestling? I did but I’ve gotten away from it because I find preachers who beg for money to be much more entertaining. Wrestling and preachers are very often the only visual alternatives to watching people sell exercise machines. There is one wrestler named the Rock who has done very well by himself. I think the Rock was a football player who graduated to wrestling and who now stars in butt kicking movies. I like the Rock because no matter what he says or who he is pounding on, the Rock always has a cheerful twinkle in his eye --- much like Robert De Niro and Bruce Willis. And you have no idea how long it took me to remember those two names. My wife Marsha likes the Rock so much that she gets his movies on DVD. What? You’ve never heard of the Rock? Well, then please remember that you first heard of the Rock on The humble Farmer radio show. Then, someday, you’ll be sitting around the TV with friends, the Rock will come on, and you’ll turn to your friends and say, “You know The humble Farmer told me about the Rock way back before he ever thought of being governor of California.
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10. How soon we forget. You might remember hearing me say a few days ago that after reading about Richard Nixon in the Encylopedia Britannica, even though he leaned to the left a little more than I was comfortable with, I wanted to vote for him. Right along that line, someone sent me this quote which I will read for you now. "Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes you can do these things. Among them are a few Texas oil millionaires, and an occasional politician or business man from other areas. Their number is negligible and they are stupid." This is a quote from President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1954. By today’s standards, President Eisenhower would have been called up before Joseph McCarthy’s committee and accused of un-American activities. But --- then you look up this quote in Snopes to see if Eisenhower really said this. And you discover that he did. How soon we forget.
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Thank you for considering The humble Farmer.

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SD (Standard Definition) File

File Name of SD Episode: humble 2011 0925.mpg

Total SD Episode Video Runtime (hh:mm:ss): 00:55:56

File Size of SD Episode Video: 2,660,610,052 Bytes

Resolution of SD Episode Video: 720x480

Date SD Episode Video Uploaded: Tuesday, September 6, 2011 - 18:11


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