[Yesterday was Columbus Day, although today is the national holiday. As it is today that the banks are closed, it is all together fitting and appropriate to remind people why we do this… to give bankers 3-day weekends :-)]
In 1961, the humorist Stan Freberg issued Volume 1 of The United States of America, a musical telling of the founding of America through the Battle of Yorktown (Volume 2 goes through the end of World War I (“They’ll never be another war…”)). The first scene on Volume 1 relates the story of how the Indians discovered Columbus. As today is Columbus Day, I present a transcription of the scene:
NARR: 1492, Madrid. The Queen of Spain grants an audience
COLUMBUS (CC): Allright, we’ll go over it once again. First
QUEEN ISABELLA (QI): You say you’ll send for me, dahling,
CC: Look, we’ve been all through this before.
QI: I know, but really, you’re such a dreamer. You’ll go
CC: I will not!
QI: You’re such a charming boy, dahling. Why don’t you
CC: I don’t want a Fiat agency!
QI: Then why don’t you go to art school like your friend,
CC: If Lenny wants to starve to death, that’s up to Lenny.
ANNOUNCE: His Majesty, King Ferdinand.
QI: (gasp) The King.
QI: Good afternoon dear. How was the inquisition? Amusing?
KING FERDINAND (KF): Dullsville. Same old… say, who’s
KF: You mean old “round, round world”. (laughs). You and
QI: Crazy? I’ll tell you how crazy. He’s a man with a
CC & KF: (fruited)
QI: Fruited. He holds these grieves to be self-evident,
CC: Is that moving? Was that a great bit?
CC: I didthey bought “The Price is Right”
CC: Then I have your permission to sail?
KF: Would you get out of here? (footsteps) Strange, he left
(on ship) 1st Mate: Admiral Columbus, sir. The men are
KF: I still can’t see what you needed three ships for?
KF: Come over here and listen
Crew: Rumble. Rumble. Rumble. Mutiny. Mutiny. Mutiny.
CC: I see what you mean. I’ll jump up here on the rigging
CC: Now hear this! This is the Admiral speaking. I know the
KF: Who can blame them! The whole thing is madness! I don’t
KF: I tell you the world is flat, and that’s that!
CC: It’s a round, round world
KF: Flat Flat world
CC: Friend, Get hip
KF: It’s a miracle if it is
CC: Square, square king
Crew: Yo, ho, ho and a Dramamine
|CC: Round, round world
It’s a round, round
I contend it’s round
And it’s gonna be found
When all the
results are in
It’s a round world now
And it’s always been
|KF: All week long on a hardtack
Brother, who said getting there is
Half the fun (breath)
up my throne for one Navy Bean
No wonder I’m turning three shades of green
How could I go on such a loony trip
|CC: Get hip
Would I climb aboard this ship
If I didn’t have odds
The earth was highly spherical
|Crew: Crazy kind of scheme
It’s a cockamamy
If we don’t sight land we’re gonna scream
|KF: It’s a miracle if it is|
|CC: Square, square crew
You’re a square,
If you don’t believe
|Crew: Yo, ho, ho through the wind and rain
There’s a typhoon coming up
But where’s John Wayne?
|CC: You’re gonna receive
The shock of your
When I take command in the name of…
|KF: I feel like a red witch
Having a wake
How much of the ocean bit do you think I can take
Claim that land in
the name of…
CC: Isabella and Ferdnand
KF: Well, for all our sakes, I hope that…
KF: What was that?
CC: Quickly, hand me the glass.
KF: Allright, allright, give the kid top billing.
KF: Watch yourself Admiral. Natives. They may be
CC: Yeah, I suppose. (pause) Well, my men and I were
CC: No, no, what you’re holding in your hand.
IC: You have a dream?
CC: Now right here would be a good location for the
Round, round world
And the land looks good
Like a continent
Complete with a flag unfurled
Yo, ho, ho and a buckskin
Now the white man’s here I guess
It’s time to leave
But why go
to war and fight like a jerk
Perhaps we can pick up some kind of work
an Indian extravaganza
Wyatt Earp or Bonanza
CC: Please don’t call us, we’ll call you