Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Give It Back To The Indians

The "They all Laughed" and "Mister Christopher Columbus" karaoke slide shows went over well with kids and adults. I "posterized" them for display in the library. I thought they would provide historical reference as well as a source for figurative language interpretation. The karaoke thread lead to the next century of New York History and with the Yankees losing and despair in the air my thoughts ran to the song Give It (A-Rod) Back To The Indians. Instead of searching all over the web for images I limited my search to within the NYPL Digital collection. Here's the result. Here's another Lorenz Hart lyric masterpiece:
Old Peter Minuet had nothing to lose when he bought the isle of Manhattan
For twenty-six dollars and a bottle of booze and they threw in the Bronx and Staten
Pete thought that he had the best of the bargain but the poor red man just grinned,
And he grunted "ugh!" meaning okay in his jargon for he knew poor Pete was skinned.
We've tried to run the city....but the city ran away...
And now Peter Minuet We can't continue it...Broadway's turning into Coney,
Champagne Charlie's drinking gin, Old New York is new and phony
Give it back to the Indians! Two cents more to smoke a Lucky,
Dodging busses keep you thin,Now New York is simply ducky,
Give it back to the Indians! Take all the reds, on the boxes made for soap
Whites on Fifth Avenue Blues down in Wall Street losing hope..
Big bargain today...Chief take it away! Come you busted city slickers,
Better take it on the chin. Father Nick has lost his knickers Give it back to the Indians!

Does anyone know what the reds on the boxes of soap are?

1 comment:

Eddie said...

Reds on the boxes made for soap refers to the communists who advocated in NYC during the Red Scare in the 20's and 30's. Whites on 5th Avenue refer to the KKK who marched in nyc and also handed out leaflets in the 20's and 30's uptown.