A Prairie Home Companion Segment 19 for May 24, 2014
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GK: It's the end of the school year and all over America, young

people are facing up to the harsh fact that learning is hard work,

it doesn't come about through osmosis. You've spent the school

year keeping up on your favorite TV shows (SFX) and playing

games (PING PONG) and now the day of reckoning has arrived.

Your final exam in Western Civilization. Your mind is a sieve.

You remember nothing. It's hopeless.

HM/GK: Now I Lay Me

Down to Rest,

And Pray I'll Pass

Tomorrow's Test.

If I Have Failed to

Learn this Junk,

I Pray the Lord I

Will Not Flunk.

If I Should Die

Before I Wake,

That's One less Test

I'll Have to Take.

GK: Your family is all excited. Your aunts and uncles are

coming from far away. They're buying gifts. There's a

graduation party scheduled. There's just one problem.

FN: You're not graduating, Lindsey.

SS: Oh no. (WEEPY) Why not?

FN: You never turned in your senior paper on Moby Dick.

SS: But I did. I emailed it to you last week.

FN: You emailed me a lot of pictures of you and your boyfriend

at a party doing keg stands.

SS: I did? Oh no. I thought I erased those pictures. I must have

erased the paper instead. I'm sorry.

FN: Can you tell me what the paper was about?

SS: This is the story about the whale, right? The guy who goes

after the whale because he bit his leg off. Right?

HM/GK: Mine eyes have seen the horror

Of the ending of the term.

Ignorance is spreading

Like a new contagious germ.

I may have to look for work

With a sanitation firm.

The truth shall soon be known.

Failure, failure, degradation.

Embarrassment, humiliation.

I've failed at higher education

The truth shall soon be known.

FN: May I ask a question, please?

SS: What is it, Brad?

FN: Do I still have to pay tuition even though I flunked and will

not receive my degree?

SS: Brad, look at me.

FN: Yes?

SS: Brad, if you burn down your house, do you still have to pay

off your home loan? Or can you get arson insurance?

FN: Let me think about that.

SS: You do that.

GK/HM: Now it's time for self-assessment

Of our aptitude

We had hoped for a profession

But we may work with food.

Now we wish we'd studied harder

Raised our GPA

Would you like ketchup on your burger

Would you like fries today?

: Class of 2014, as you leave these hallowed halls

and go out into the world to make a put into

effect the ideals and aspirations you have learned here at

Bannister College........(FADING)

GK: All of your friends in their blue gowns are at

commencement, but not you, sir. You're over on the other side

of town, with a backpack. (TRAIN WHISTLE, OFF)

DR: This is your westbound freight train. Is that the one you


TR: I guess so. Will it stop?

DR: No, it just slows down, so you have to run alongside and

look in the boxcar and make sure nobody else is in it and then

toss your bedroll up and your cardboard and grab hold of the

door handle and swing your legs up and in you go.


TR: Is there wifi? There's not, is there?

DR: No. And cellphone coverage is poor out in the mountains.

TR: Okay. Thanks for the whiskey.

DR: Good luck. Off you go. Oh, one more thing, when you take

a leak, don't do it out the door when the train is going fast.

TR: Why not?

DR: Did you ever study physics?

TR: No, I majored in creative writing.

DR: Oh. Well, in that case, go ahead.


HM/GK: We are two stray cats on a westbound freight


Because we flunked out of Iowa State

Don't know how

A hundred grand in student debt

Cannot Google or surf the Net

Wonder what kind of jobs we'll get