Tuesday, December 5, 2017

In Pursuit of a Scone

In Defense of Garrison Keillor

What's that master storyteller's crime? 

Keillor, former host of  "A Prairie Home Companion," explained:

 "I meant to pat her back after she told me about her unhappiness and her shirt was open and my hand went up about six inches. She recoiled. I apologized. I sent her an email of apology later and she replied that she had forgiven me and not to think about it. We were friends. We continued to be friendly right up until her lawyer called."

On Nov. 29, the Minnesota Public Radio (MPR) fired Keillor, accusing him of  "improper behavior." Not 83 accusers like Harvey Weinstein. Or even 8, like Charlie Rose.

Chris Thile, who replaced Keillor, called the allegations "heartbreaking." But Thile noted the "harmful power imbalance that women have had to endure for so long in our culture."

Imbalance indeed. If I'd been able to turn sexual abusers into criminals like MPR, I could have fired a missionary, a national youth leader, and the director of Camp Comeca, all Methodists. And all by the time I turned 16. 

So why am I defending Keillor?

Well, it's not for his wry, sometimes dry, Midwestern variety program which he ran for 42 years. Not even for his popular monologue, which opened "It was a quiet week in Lake Wobegon" and resulted in an explosion of audience applause.

No, it's for his "Writer's Almanac" which appeared every morning in my email. I'd click it and read a poem, perhaps even a poem I liked. Then I cruised down Keillor's long list of tidbits, featuring the escapades of literary folk I often knew. An intellectual scone with my morning brew. What could be nicer?

But now it's gone, forever it seems. So even though Keillor may be impure in thought, and even in deed, still if I could make MPR re-hire the fellow, I would. I miss my morning scone.

written for:

a JoLt of CoFFeY 
 An Intermittent Newsletter
by Marilyn June Coffey

The author of:
A Cretan Cycle: "A single, sharp, funny story in verse" retells the Minotaur's myth 
Great Plains Patchwork: A lyric tale of the "wondrous strange" great plains
JackJack & JuneBug: A steamy, poignant love story (with Jack Loscutoff)
Mail-Order Kid: A popular biography of Teresa Martin, an orphan train rider
Marcella: A controversial, internationally published coming-of-age novel
Mas - tur - ba - tion: A rollicking tract on a "quite inexhaustible" subject
Pricksongs: A libidinous collection of tart poems from the turbulent sixties
That Punk Jimmy Hoffa: A memoir depicts how Coffey's father beat Hoffa
The Battle of Orleans: A documentary about a hotly disputed Marcella reading 
Thieves, Rascals & Sore Losers: Details the dirty deals that helped settle Nebraska

& publisher of Jack Loscutoff's latest books:
Aunt Gussie's Socks: A Russian-American based memoir (in fact and fiction)
A Line of Shorts: The breezy short stories and holy satires of an awesome wordsmith

Buy Coffey's & Loscutoff's books: 

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