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13 August 2009 @ 12:20 pm
For my reference: lyrics  
"The Merry Minuet", lyrics by Sheldon Harnick (1958), popularized by The Kingston Trio, video

They're rioting in Africa. They're starving in Spain.
There's hurricanes in Florida and Texas needs rain.
The whole world is festering with unhappy souls.
The French hate the Germans. The Germans hate the Poles.
Italians hate Yugoslavs. South Africans hate the Dutch
and I don't like anybody very much!

But we can be tranquil and thankful and proud
for man's been endowed with a mushroom shaped cloud.
And we know for certain that some lovely day
someone will set the spark off and we will all be blown away.
They're rioting in Africa. There's strife in Iran.
What nature doesn't do to us will be done by our fellow man.


"National Brotherhood Week", lyrics by Tom Lehrer (1960s), popularized by Tom Lehrer, video

One week of every year is designated National Brotherhood Week. This is just one of many such weeks honoring various worthy causes. One of my favorites is National Make-fun-of-the-handicapped Week which Frank Fontaine and Jerry Lewis are in charge of as you know. During National Brotherhood Week various special events are arranged to drive home the message of brotherhood. This year, for example, on the first day of the week Malcolm X was killed which gives you an idea of how effective the whole thing is. I'm sure we all agree that we ought to love one another and I know there are people in the world that do not love their fellow human beings and I hate people like that. Here's a song about National Brotherhood Week.

Oh, the white folks hate the black folks,
And the black folks hate the white folks.
To hate all but the right folks
Is an old established rule.

But during National Brotherhood Week, National Brotherhood Week,
Lena Horne and Sheriff Clarke are dancing cheek to cheek.
It's fun to eulogize
The people you despise,
As long as you don't let 'em in your school.

Oh, the poor folks hate the rich folks,
And the rich folks hate the poor folks.
All of my folks hate all of your folks,
It's American as apple pie.

But during National Brotherhood Week, National Brotherhood Week,
New Yorkers love the Puerto Ricans 'cause it's very chic.
Step up and shake the hand
Of someone you can't stand.
You can tolerate him if you try.

Oh, the Protestants hate the Catholics,
And the Catholics hate the Protestants,
And the Hindus hate the Muslims,
And everybody hates the Jews.

But during National Brotherhood Week, National Brotherhood Week,
It's National Everyone-smile-at-one-another-hood Week.
Be nice to people who
Are inferior to you.
It's only for a week, so have no fear.
Be grateful that it doesn't last all year!

And because there's no such thing as too much Tom Lehrer, a wonderful animation of The Elements.
 
 
 
Jim Hetleyjhetley on August 13th, 2009 04:30 pm (UTC)
Both well and fondly remembered, and altogether too topical for their age . . .
fatcookfatcook on August 13th, 2009 06:27 pm (UTC)
There is a gentleman on youtube who does a wonderful version of "New Math". We laughed until we hurt.
Gretchenwren08 on August 13th, 2009 11:29 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I love these! (Some of my favorite old songs)
Maggiesillymagpie on August 14th, 2009 01:06 am (UTC)
"The Merry Minuet" is new to me. The Tom Lehrer songs are old favorites, of course. Thanks for posting the link to the "Elements" animation--that was wonderful!