Saturday, August 11, 2012

In Honor of Our Friend AOW

FreeThinke Productions 

proudly presents



Michael Brown


Leonard Sillman’s

NEW FACES of 1954

Yesterday in old Fall River, Mr. Andrew Borden died
And he got his daughter Lizzie on a charge of homicide.
Some folks say she didn't do it, and others say she did
But they all agree Miss Lizzie B. was a problem sort of kid

'Cause you can't chop your poppa up in Massachusetts
Not even if it's planned as a surprise
No you can't chop your poppa up in Massachusetts
You know how neighbors love to criticize.

She got him on the sofa where he'd gone to take a snooze
And I hope he went to heaven' cause he wasn't wearing shoes
Lizzie kind of rearranged him with a hatchet, so they say
And then she got her mother in that same old-fashioned way,

But you can't can't chop your momma up in Massachusetts
Not even if you're tired of her cuisine
No, you can't chop your momma up in Massachusetts
You know it's almost sure to cause a scene.

Well, they really kept her hoppin' on that busy afternoon
With both down and upstairs chopping 
while she hummed a ragtime tune:
They really made her hustle and when all was said and done
She'd removed her mother's bustle when she wasn't wearing one.

Oh you can't chop your Momma up in Massachusetts
And then blame all the damage on the mice,
No you can't chop your Momma up in Massachusetts
That kind of thing just isn't very nice.

Now, It wasn't done for pleasure and it wasn't done for spite
And it wasn't done because the lady wasn't very bright,
She'd always done the slightest thing that mom and dad had bid
They said, "Lizzie cut it out! " so that's exactly what she did.

But you can't chop your poppa up in Massachusetts
And then get dressed and go out for a walk,
No, you can't chop your poppa up in Massachusetts
Massachusetts is a far cry from New York.

You can't chop your poppa up in Massachusetts ––

[Shouted] Shut the door and lock and latch it
Here comes Lizzie with a brand new hatchet!

You can't chop your poppa up in Massachusetts ––

[shouted] Such a snob I heard it said,
She met her pa and cut him dead!

You can't chop your poppa up in Massachusetts ––

[shouted] Jump like a fish, jump like a porpoise
All join in in a habeas corpus.

No, you can't chop your poppa up in Massachusetts ––
Massachusetts is a far cry from New York!


  1. I've heard of this tune, but have never heard it before -- much less seen the video.

    How considerate of you to post this in my honor, FT!


  2. you're welcome, of course, AOW.

    I didn't remember hearing this before, though I was taken to see New Faces of 1952 and certainly remembered Alice Ghostley -- and Eartha Kitt too.

    I think the version in the video is part of a move they made that came out in 1954. I never knew about the movie.

    This "Production Number" is, of course, but because no one in his right mind could take it seriously, it is hysterically funny.

    The Boston Beguine remains THE it of the Show for me, however. There's nothing I like better than GOOD satire.

    The Borscht Belt CRAP took over TV sooner after New Faces, then Mort Sahl and Lenny Bruce -- and though we didn't realize it at the time - AMERICA was OVER.

    Too bad!

    ~ FT

  3. Same song, different rendition.

    Information about the Chad Mitchell Trio HERE. I was not much interested in the group.

  4. The Chad Mitchell version is very lively. I like it.

    You can access it after the video we posted here is finished. Just click on the Chad Everett segment on the screen, and it will pop right up in place -- so will any of one of several other suggested selections in the box.

    Technology is a fascinating labyrinth.

    ~ FT

  5. I loved seeing Lizzie prancing around the stage in that red dress, but I wish she'd been seen swinging the axe in time to the music during the dance.

    Now that WOULD have made it even funnier, since the whole thing is just a bit of inspired inanity anyway.

    Frankly, I'm surprised no liberal has posted harsh criticism of my "outrageous display of bad taste and disgusting insensitivity to human suffering -- and especially to women -- for daring to show this revolting example of cultural perversion."

    THAT'S the way THOSE people tend to THINK. I've experienced it up close and personal, so I KNOW what I'm talking about.

    When you lose touch with your sense of humor, you've lost everything that makes life worth living -- in my never humble opinion.


    ~ FT

  6. It must be said in the interests of Truth and Fairness, however, that much-if-not-most of the very best material in the fields of drama, comedy, satire and poetry have been produced by individuals with a passionate, radical turn of mind.

    Once again we see that lIfe is, indeed, a paradox.

    ~ FreeThinke

  7. FT,
    That turn of mind that you mentioned may have something to do with genius, which often emanates from those with bipolar disorder. There is an excellent book on the topic, but I don't recall the title of the book.

  8. Some "disorders," AOW, may not really be "disorders. I think they would be better described as "variations."

    It would be a dull world, indeed, if everyone were "normal."

    I, personally, welcome weirdness, unless it becomes vicious or rudely anti-social.

    I think it's very wrong to lump "genius" in with "pathology." That's what "Philistines" tended to do, and because of "Philistinism," we got a reaction in the form of "Sex, Drugs & Rock 'n Roll," Hippies, Charles Manson and his "family," and snotty, belligerent, self-absorbed, out-of-control campus Radicals.

    The proverbial pendulum always seems to swing in too wide an arc, doesn't it?

    ~ FT

  9. FT,
    Yes, "variations" is a better term.

    As for the relationship with genius and pathology, I think there is a connection in that certain variations promote focus and concentration -- obsessive-compulsive "disorder," for example.

    To my knowledge, true sociopaths are not geniuses -- although many are demagogues.

    I have noticed that some diagnosed with Asberger's or the like are geniuses in the eyes of many. It has been opined that Bill Gates has a form of Asberger's. John Elder Robison (video) has written on the topic. You can also find information about Robison at Wiki. BTW, he lives in Amherst!

    You might be interested in looking at THIS LIST. Emily Dickinson is on the list! And many other names as well!

    Of course, there is a lot of speculating involved in making such "diagnoses," and that speculation is in play is stated there as well. However, I think that some of the people on the list certainly have a significant difference.

    In the end, the human brain and the variations within the human species are unfathomable.

    I myself have greatly enjoyed working with students who were diagnosed on the autism spectrum.

    I recently read a study about the connection between sociopathy and politicians. What the author said made sense to me!

  10. The only thing that distinguishes a disorder from a variation is the amount of harm it causes. Some disruptive conditions might bring gifts as well as curses, but it's only the extent of the curse that determines whether or not we consider it a disorder.

    Some bipolar subjects, particularly type I, claim they wouldn't like to be without it. I believe them, but that doesn't mean they don't need to manage the condition which is real and can cause damage.

    The philistine, in my opinion, is the one who smugly rejects forms of art outside his normal tastes. It is not obvious whether there are more classical enthusiasts unwilling to judge rock fairly than there are rock enthusiasts unable to hear classical music.



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