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The pig got up and slowly walked away

Posted by Austin Morris on UTC 2018-09-04 13:23.

The line between the 'novelty song' and the deepest thoughts in the English language is a thin one. The blessed Frank Crumit (1889-1943), who died young of a heart attack 75 years ago on 7 September 1943, crosses it here in a perfect performance of a song by Benjamin Hapgood Burt:

Here is some help for non-native speakers of English or the drunk:

One evening in October
When I was 'bout one-third sober
And was taking home a load with manly pride.
My poor feet began to stutter
So I lay down in the gutter
And a pig came up and lay down by my side.

Then we sang 'It's All Fair Weather'
And 'Good Fellows Get Together'
Till a lady passing by was heard to say:
She says, 'You can tell a man who boozes
By the company he chooses.
And the pig got up and slowly walked away.

Yes, the pig got up and slowly walked away,
Slowly walked away, slowly walked away.
Yes, the pig got up and he turned and winked at me
As he slowly walked away

I also well remember
One evening in November
When I was creeping home at break of day.
For in my exhilaration
I engaged in conversation
With a cab-horse, around the corner of Broadway.

I was filled up to the eyeballs
With a flock of gin and highballs
So I whispered to the cab-horse old and grey:
I says, 'It's these all-night homeward marches
That gave us both our fallen arches.'
And the old horse laughed and slowly walked away.

Yes, the old horse laughed and slowly walked away
Slowly walked away, he slowly walked away.
And the old horse laughed and he turned and winked at me
As he slowly walked away.
As he slowly walked away.

His most famous piece is the wonderful Abdul Abulbul Amir. That and many of his works can of course be found on YouTube.

Frank Crumit (1889-1943) in the 1920s.

Frank Crumit (1889-1943) in the 1920s. Image: United States Library of Congress, LC-DIG-ggbain-35308.