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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,Joe_F Lyr Req: Four Prominent Bastards (Ogden Nash) (10) Lyr Add: FOUR PROMINENT BASTARDS (Ogden Nash) 02 Aug 06


I looked this up at Harvard. I copied it with a pencil (I was not allowed to photocopy it), and this is the result. I did not have time to copy the tune, but it is not the one Oscar Brand uses.

Four Prominent Bastards
by Ogden Nash
(Written for the Dutch Treat Club show, New York, March 1933)

The banker:
I'm an autocratic figure in these democratic states.
I'm a dandy demonstration of hereditary traits.
As the children of the baker bake the most delicious breads,
As the sons of Casanova fill the most exclusive beds,
As the Barrymores, the Roosevelts, and others I could name
Inherited the talents that perpetuate their fame,
My position in the structure of society I owe
To the qualities my parents bequeathed me long ago.
My pappy was a gentleman and musical to boot.
He used to play piano in a house of ill repute.
The madam was a lady and a credit to her cult.
She enjoyed my pappy's playing, and I was the result.
So my mammy and my pappy are the ones I have to thank
That I'm chairman of the board of the National County Bank.

Chorus:
Oh, our parents forgot to get married.
Oh, our parents forgot to get wed.
Did a wedding bell chime? It was always a time
When our parents were somewhere in bed.
Oh, thanks to our kind, loving parents,
We are kings in the land of the free --
Your banker, your broker, your Washington joker,
Four prominent bastards are we, tralalala,
Four prominent bastards are we.

The broker:
In a cozy little farmhouse, in a cozy little dell,
A dear, old-fashioned farmer and his daughter used to dwell.
She was pretty, she was charming, she was tender, she was mild,
And her sympathies were such that she was frequently with child.
The year her hospitality attained a record high,
She became the happy mammy of an infant, which was I.
Whenever she was gloomy, I could always make her grin
By childishly inquiring who my pappy might have been.
The hired man was favored by the girls in mammy's set,
And a traveling man from Scranton was an even-money bet,
But such were mammy's motives, and such was her allure,
That even Roger Babson wasn't altogether sure.
Well, I took my mammy's morals, and I took my pappy's crust,
And I grew to be the founder of a big investment trust.

The senator:
On a lonesome southern chain gang on a dusty southern road,
My late lamented daddy made his permanent abode.
Now some were there for stealing, but daddy's only fault
Was an overwhelming weakness for criminal assault.
His philosophy was simple and free from moral tape:
Seduction is for sissies -- a he-man wants his rape.
Daddy's total list of victims was embarrasingly rich,
And though one of them was mammy, he couldn't tell me which.
Well, I didn't go to college, but I got me a degree:
I reckon I'm the model of a perfect S.O.B.
I'm a debit to my country, but a credit to my dad:
I'm the most expensive senator the country ever had.
I remember daddy's warning that raping is a crime,
Unless you rape the voters a million at a time.

You and I:
I'm an ordinary figure in these democratic states,
A pathetic demonstration of hereditary traits.
As the children of the cops possess the flattest kind of feet
And the daughter of a floosy has a wiggle to her seat,
My position at the bottom of society I owe
To the qualities my parents bequeathed me long ago.
My father was a married man, and what is even more,
He was married to my mother, a fact that I deplore.
I was born in holy wedlock; consequently by and by
I was rooked by every bastard with plunder in his eye.
I invested, I deposited, I voted every fall,
And if I saved a penny, the bastards took it all.
At last I've learned my lesson and I'm on the proper track:
I'm a self-appointed bastard, and I'm going to get it back.


--- Joe Fineman    joe_f@verizon.net

||: If people have to work for a living, then the price of labor equals the standard of living. :||
    Great work, Joe! I deleted the extra line breaks from your post.
    -Joe Offer-


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