Ezra Kendall's SPOTS OF WIT AND HUMOR (1899)

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Sun Sep 30 07:34:25 UTC 2001

At 7:12 PM -0400 9/28/01, Bapopik at AOL.COM wrote:
>Helman Taylor Co.
>Cleveland, Ohio
>(The following "Fruit and Vegetable Handicap" is useful perhaps for
>"Big Apple" in horseracing.  This routine was probably a horseracing
>cliche in the early 1900s--ed.)
>Pg. 66:
>    The next race was a sort of (Pg. 67--ed.) Fruit and Vegetable Handicap.
>    In th' paddock, before th' race, I heard one of th' trainers say
>to a jockey, "Water Melon, and warm up Potatoes."
>    "I'd like to win a stake with Mushrooms, but," he says, "If that
>California pair gets ahead of Lettuce you'll see Sugar beat."
>    "Of all th' string, Beans is th' best;
>    Asparagrass tips are no good."
>    When th' race was being run I was in th' pool room, listening to
>th' telegraph operator.
>    He says, "They're off--Grape's in th' bunch."   Th' man next to
>me must have had Grapes, for th' minute he heard "Grapes" he had
>gripes.  And Grapes in th' bunch (Pg. 68--ed.) was enough to give a
>man gripes in th' bunch.
>    Then th' operator went on, "Onions coming strong; Skin on th'
>outside; Raddish wins--pulled up."
>    And th' judges scolded th' jockey for pulling up th' horse--Raddish.

The classic version of this is the Spike Jones patter.  Not original,
as the above makes it clear, but a lot more polished.


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