[Today is Columbus Day, and, FYI, the banks are closed. Thus, 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