Cactus Tractor also have a lot of fun with the desk part of the tiny desk. There’s a small purple desk and from behind it comes the lead singer and guitarist. He is dressed crazily–this song and band are definitely a little goofy. He pulls out a cactus and a tractor and then starts whistling. It doesn’t seem like he’s whistling the song but he is. He starts playing along to the song a kind of old jazzy sound. And it reminds me of “Mister Sandman” at times.
There’s some fairly complicated lyrics, “like reading Chinese, like choosing wine based on the cheese.”
And then a ukulele player comes out from behind the desk. She is followed by a fisherman (it has to do with the lyrics). Then an accordionist sneaks out and she’s followed by an acoustic guitarist and an upright bassist. The drummer comes out (they wheel his drums over) And then finally a saxophonist and 2 trumpeters.
The song is funny and bouncy and catchy with several parts.
Eventually, the song switches to German (Berliner-jelly donut) and they sing many verses in Deutsch. There’s no explanation for the fisherman by the end of the song (expect that he holds the jelly donut). But that’s irrelevant because then some acrobats appear at the side of the stage and the camera pulls back as jugglers, stilt walkers and the like fill the screen. It’s pretty extraordinary and it was done in one take (I expect the music was prerecorded, although I’d love to be wrong).
The song has novelty written all over it (they do lots of visual jokes about the lyrics) and yet it is really catchy and…unexpectedly, it is nearly six minutes long!
[READ: February 20, 2016] “The Cornucopia”
This is a short story that is set in Australia (the author is Australian, so that makes sense).
It is about a woman, Julia Holt, who is never impressed. No matter what exciting things her friends tell her, she never shows appropriate excitement. She is happy for her friends’ successes, but nothing seems to make her excited.
Perhaps it is because she is powerful and rich and has everything she needs. Indeed, she even has her friends do a lot of her work for her–she is quite busy, after all. But her friends (carefully cultivated by Julia, it must be said) do benefit from her friendship. And honestly she was a little afraid of their successes because she didn’t want to lose any of them.
She and her husband are wealthy. They are one of Australia’s millionaire couples. Ralph, despite this wealth was never arrogant or showoffy. He also had no time for games or hobbies. He just did financial work all the time And Ralph will always acknowledge that Julia is the more powerful one of the two oft hem.
So far so good as stories go. But there has to be a crisis of some kind, right?
The crisis comes in the form of Anne Marie. Anne Marie was a neglected child of sixteen. Julia and Ralph were on a committee which aimed to help the needy and that is how they discovered Ann Marie. Ann Marie’s parents were no longer in the picture, so Julie and Ralph decided to employ her. She was kind and generous and beautiful.
But, and this really bothered Julia, Anne Marie was cold and uncommunicative, especially to Julia. Not matter what she did, Julia could not draw her out of her shell. She wouldn’t talk or tell stories. And Julia wasn’t prying, she just wanted to feel useful to the girl.
Then Anne Marie began avoiding eye contact with Julia. And worse yet, Anne Marie began confiding in Elsie, the cook.
Even though she was hurt by this, she used the information that the cook told her about Anne Marie to interact her.
And then the story goes rather dark as it ends–revenge is everpresent.