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music Lum and Abner

Hendricks 1

Lum and Abner

What is the first thing you think of when you here of the 1930s, Amos and Andy or how about Lum and Abner?  Lum and Abner werent really expected to do anything with their lives; they were just having fun trying to make something of them selves.  They became two of the most famous people from Polk and Montgomery counties: Chet Lauck- Lum, Norris Goff- Abner, and the history of Lum and Abner.  
Chester Lauck was born in Alleene, Arkansas, February 2, 1902. (Alleene, Arkansas)(www.mu.net/stemple/page1.htm)  His parents were W.J. and Cora Lauck. (Cate, Micheal, 190)  Chet moved to Mena in 1911, where he met Norris Goff.  They became very good friends.  Chet lived on Port Arthur Avenue in Mena.  His father owned the sawmill and was the Union Bank president.  Chet went to Mena high school.  He played baseball, basketball, football, and track.  He had two older brothers and one younger sister.  He graduated from high school in 1920.  After high school, Chet went to the University of Arkansas and got a degree in advertising.  He was the co-editor of the Universitys humor magazine and was a Razorback cheerleader.  After the University of Arkansas, he went to study at Chicago Institute of Fine Arts. (Stucker, Kathryn Moore)  In 1926, Chet married Harriet Wood.  He had three children: Shirley, Nancy, and Chet Jr.
Norris Goff was born in Cove, Arkansas, May 30, 1906. (www.me.net/stemple/ page1.htm)  His parents were Rome and Dora Goff. (Cate, Micheal, 190)  He lived on Reine Street.  His father worked as a wholesale grocer. (Williams, Troy, 70)  When Norris was in high school, he was quarterback for the football team.  He graduated in 1924.  He then went to the University of Arkansas and the University of Oklahoma.  
Hendricks 2
After college he worked at his fathers company.  In 1929, Norris married Elizabeth Bullion.  They had a boy, Gary, and a girl, Gretchen. (Stucker, Kathryn Moore)
Waters was the name of the town Chet and Norris got started in.  Waters sounded like a swamp so they changed the name of the town to Pine Ridge, because of the woods and valleys of the Ouachitas.  In Pine Ridge there was a sawmill, post office, blacksmith shop, gristmill, and other necessary services to the farm community.  The community started in the early 1900s.  Lauck and Goff lived close to each other.  
By 1931, they became Amos and Andy imitators.  Chet and Norris liked clowning around at the Elks Lodge and Possum Club Banquets.  On July 27, 1931, they made their national radio debut on NBC radio network from Chicago.  The program Lum and Abner aired from 1931 to 1953.  The programs were fifteen to thirty minutes long.  The first sponsor was the Quakers Oats Company.  Other sponsors were Ford Motors Company, Horlicks Malted Milk, Alka Seltzer (the longest lasting association), and General Motors.
Their philosophy was simply best summed up in one piece of advice: Never put your faith in seed catalogues.  That thing with the double barreled name always turns out to be radishes. (Williams, Troy, 71)  
Chet Lauck once said during the 1930s, Were sort of like Mussolini.  Weve created Pine Ridge and people in it, the mayor, the justice of the peace, the fire chief, the
grocer.  Were dictators by remote control.  Its our town and we run it to suit ourselves. (Williams, Troy, 71)  

Hendricks 3
The personalities of the people they swapped stories with, while stopped at rural stores, were to become the characters they created for their radio programs.  Grandpappy Spears was based of Cling Wilhite, from one of the earliest Waters families both wore floppy hats and rode a white mule.  Cedric Wehunt was based on Lester Goble, slow of speech but humorous.  The real Ola Hooper became Elizabeth Peabody, large of heart and stature but stern of voice in hand.  Eva May ONeal became Little Pearl, each planned on becoming a nurse but Miss ONeal died at age 18 from injuries received in a fall from a horse.  Margaret Wilhite became Sister Simpson, Anna Risenhoover became Aunt Charity Spears and Aunt Chat Lawrence was Widder Abernathy. (Williams, Troy, 70)  Lauck and Goff carried the show mostly by themselves, doing different characters.  Occasionally there ... more

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the rookie

Rookie
The film Rookie is a factual drama that is based on the life of Jimmy Morris, an ex-major league baseball player.  The subject matter of the movie was to never quit; try, try again or at least until you reach your goal.  This film inspires the person to fulfill their dreams no matter how impossible they may seem.  
There were not many major characters in this movie, but all played an important roll to the subject matter.  Jimmy Morris was the main character, a young man, about 30 years old with a wife, three children, and a career as a chemistry high school teacher and baseball coach. His high school baseball team was the inspiration to him helping to achieve his goal of wanting to be a major league baseball player.  Lori Morris, Jimmys wife, Hunter was his only young son who adored his father, and two young daughters Jessica, and Jamie.  Jimmys father who was a military man played a minor part in the movie but, was the reason for a major controversy in the main characters life.
The audience had a big part in the participative experience area. Since Jimmy plays a high school teacher, father, son, husband, and coach, the character is able to relate to all kind of people.  Jimmy is just like everyone else in everyday life; struggling to make ends meet, loves baseball like any red blooded American, and loves his family.  He relates to everyone because, everyone has either had or has been a teacher, father, son, wife, daughters, or a coach, do this makes it easier for the audience to feel like it is in the characters shoes.  In this movie the audience can escape and be at one with the character Jimmy Morris.
The overall structure of the film was in chronological order.  The film began with a legend of some nuns in 1923 who began the interest in baseball in a small town, Big Lake, Texas (this was to be the home of the main character later on in his life).  Then the film switched to Jimmy Morris life by showing excerpts from his childhood. Then it jumped to the lead characters life as an adult man (age 30 or so) dealing with everyday life in Big Lake, Texas.  Finally the movie worked its way up to how Jimmy Morris got into the major leagues.
The film image started out with just a dirt field with dust blowing all over and two nuns were scattering yellow rose petals into the wind, this gave the image of fertilizing a desolate land.  The music in the background were many country songs sung by artists such as, Willie Nelson and Elvis Presley.  These country songs were used to portray the rough Texas way of life.  Later on in the movie there were faster paced country songs to imply that his life was picking up and he was starting to fulfill his dreams of being a baseball player.  The setting of this film was in Big Lake, Texas. This setting was used from the time period of the 1950s all the way up to the 1990s.
The story was about a young man named Jimmy Morris who grew up in a military home and was really never able to settle down and play baseball.  His father was a man who was hard in the heart, stubborn and he did not appreciate having a son.  This lack of emotion toward his son caused controversy between Jimmy and him, they werent able to talk other than the occasional hello.  When Jimmy was young his family made their last and final move to the present setting of Big Lake, Texas.  Big Lake was a place of nothing, it was a small town that had one road, oilrigs, no baseball (until later), and was crazy about football.  Jimmy had to overcome the fact that there was no baseball in the town.  So he practiced his baseball at an old empty field (later realizing this was the field that was seen at the very beginning of the picture, film image) and this is where he learned how to be such a great baseball player.  The film only alluded to the part of Jimmy ... more

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