GK: And that old familiar music tells us it's Storytime again and I thought I'd tell you about back a long time ago when my family came to the North Shore in the summer like everybody else in Minnesota. Came to Duluth and saw the Lift Bridge go up (BOAT HORN) and the ore boat go under and drove up to the Split Rock Lighthouse (FOGHORN) and Grand Marais and because it was cheap we stayed in a little dump called Al & Betty's Tourist Cabins which had kitchens.
SS (DEEP WHISKEY VOICE): Make sure you don't clean fish on the picnic tables, that's all I ask. And don't leave garbage outside. It draws the bears like you wouldn't believe.
GK: Bears were a constant worry. So when we took a hike, we were careful to ring bells and sing to warn bears away. (DINGING BELLS)
ALL: JESUS WANTS ME FOR A SUNBEAM TO SHINE
FOR HIM EACH DAY
IN EVERY WAY TRY TO PLEASE HIM AT HOME
AT SCHOOL AT PLAY
GK: Do we have to sing? People are staring at us.
SS: Would you rather be attacked by a bear?
ALL: A SUNBEAM, A SUNBEAM
JESUS WANTS ME FOR A SUNBEAM
A SUNBEAM, A SUNBEAM
I'LL BE A SUNBEAM FOR HIM.
SS (DEEP INHALE): Oh, look at that beautiful lake? Isn't it magnificent? Can anyone look at that and tell me that there is no God?
GK: There was a God but evidently he was a god who sent bears roaming after people who weren't singing hymns. (BRIDGE) Al and Betty's Tourist Cabins always smelled of Pine-Sol Disinfectant.
TR (DEEP WHISKEY VOICE): Betty and I like to use plenty of Pine Sol on the walls and floors. They say it keeps bears away. (BRIDGE)
GK: Naturally I had bad dreams when we came to the North Shore. Dreams of being on a ship in a storm (WIND, RIGGING, HURRICANE)
TR (OFF): Steady as she goes!
GK: Steady as she goes???? We're in a storm.
TR (OFF): Keep her into the wind.
GK: Easy for you to say. (BRIDGE)
GK: Or there were bears coming after me. (BEAR SNARLING) (WHIMPERING) Or I was sent to an orphanage. One run by Al and Betty. (DREAM CHORDS)
TR (DEEP): Your family can't afford to keep you anymore so they've put you up for adoption, Carson. Have you ever worked in an iron ore mine?
GK: I'm only ten, sir.
TR (DEEP): Ten is old enough to work. You're a big strong boy. You can pick up the chunks of ore that drop off the trains.
SS (DEEP): You can sleep in the coal shed. That's okay, isn't it?
GK: Yes, ma'am.
SS (DEEP): And here's a bucket of slops for your supper.
GK: Thank you. (BRIDGE) Sometimes I had happy dreams about school and my beloved teacher Mrs. Moehlenbrock-----(DREAMS)
SS: You're so advanced for your age. Algebra---- spelling ---- and your map of the North Shore --- it's so well colored, every crayon stroke is perfect ---- and your choice of colors.
GK: Thank you. (CHORDS) But more often they were bad dreams, and Al & Betty were the villains.
TR (DEEP): Betty and I are communists, Carson. And we're going to make you a communist too.
GK: No, no-----
SS (DEEP): You have to say there is no God. Say it----
GK: But there is----
SS (DEEP): Say there is no God, Carson. Or else you'll have to drink a pitcher of warm spit.
TR (DEEP): You heard her. (HAWKS AND SPITS) Say it. There is no God. (MUSIC)
GK: They were terrible dreams and I woke up exhausted in the morning.
SS: Are you all right, honey?
GK: I didn't sleep well.
SS: We're going for a hike---- want to come with?
GK: I'm bushed, Mom. (BRIDGE) And that's when I met the bear. He walked right into the cabin.
TK (BEAR, SINGING): JESUS WANTS ME FOR A BROWN BEAR
TO SNIFF FOR HIM EACH DAY,
IN EVERY WAY TRY TO PLEASE HIM--- OH! (HE IS STARTLED) ---- You scared me!
GK: I scared you!!!! What are you doing in here?
TK (BEAR): Came in to get some of that Pine-Sol Disinfectant. Love that stuff. (SPLASHES) Put a little under the arms. (SPRITZES) Behind my ears. Hey--- you got something to eat?
GK: What you want?
TK (BEAR): Garbage.
TK (BEAR): You know. Apple cores. Orange rinds. Coffee grounds.
GK: You ever try a peanut butter sandwich?
TK (BEAR): What's that?
GK: So I made him a big thick peanut butter sandwich. Which he liked.
TK (BEAR, MOUTH FULL): Boy, this sure beats eating maggots.
GK: He was a wonderful bear and I taught him a few new words----
TK (BEAR): Loquacious.
GK: It means talkative.
TK (BEAR): Indubitably.
GK: For sure. Without a doubt.
TK (BEAR): You've been so kind to me. Let me give you this----
GK: A plastic card. With my name on it? What good would that do?
TK (BEAR): You give that to people and you can get anything you want.
GK: And that's how I found out about credit cards. Up until then, I'd only had cash. My allowance. My babysitting money. A credit card was a whole other world.
TR: You wish the white suit with the white Panama hat and the two toned shoes, sir?
TR: Shall I wrap them?
GK: No, I want to wear them. And those shoes--- are they? (TAP ROUTINE) Yes, they are. Beautiful. (TAP DANCING) I paid for my family to come to the North Shore that summer and instead of Al & Betty's we stayed in the fabulous Hotel Duluth and (CAR REV UP THROUGH GEARS) I drove my white convertible up the North Shore highway, the wind blowing through my golden hair, all thanks to that good bear, and that's why it's very important to be kind to animals, (THEME) and that music tells us that's all the time we have today on Storytime.