Saturday, February 7, 2015

Party Piece

Do you remember when you needed to have a 'party piece' to be social adept? That little song or poem or other performance piece you trotted out at a house party.

After work today, I spent an hour of what was left of the afternoon in one of my favourite rainy day activities (Yes, a rainy day in February) - browsing through the used book stalls in thrift stores.

The Sally Ann store check-out clerk had an interesting proposition: tell a joke, sing a song or dance a little dance, and I'll give you 10% off the total cost of your items.

"Well, any joke I can remember off the top of my head isn't fit for a Christian thrift store," I said, "and funny enough, the only poem I can ever remember without struggle was one that got me in trouble as a 6 year old child in Grade 1, and my Grandpa taught it to me!"

"What was it?" asked the woman in line behind me.

So I trotted out my party piece that made my Grandpa rock back on his heels in laughter every time I recited it:

Carnation Milk's the best in the land,
comes to the table in a little red can.
No tits to pull, no hay to pitch,
just punch a hole in the son-of-a-bitch.

She about bust a gut laughing.

"Say that again!" said the woman next in line. 

So I did. And then explained:

"I was raised on a ranch," I explained, "and my Grandpa didn't believe in cowboys milking cows."

The clerk thought it was so funny that she gave me one of $2-each books to me for free - a 25% discount.

First time that little party piece ever did me some good instead of getting me in trouble.


  1. Q. Do you believe in reincarnation?

    A. No; who'd want to come back as a tin on condensed milk anyway!