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Dear Mr. Keillor: We saw

March 11, 2004 |

Dear Mr. Keillor:
We saw the show in San Diego in November and were impressed by the way you presented the news from Lake Wobegon. Do you do that entirely from memory? I did notice that you dropped sheets of paper on the floor from time to time during the show. So I wondered, as you sat on that stool gazing down in an apparent trancelike state, if you were actually reading from notes on the floor. Not that it really matters that much. Just curious.


The News from Lake Wobegon is ad lib, which is no great feat. People do the same thing at dinner tables all the time --- somebody asks you what happened on your trip to Toledo and you look at them and tell them. The dropped papers were scripts. For some reason, we have no wastebasket on stage so we throw stuff on the floor. The stagehands don't pick them up being naturally hesitant to bend over in front of thousands of people, so they just lie there. If I had read from them, I'd be doing a Guy Noir story or talking about ketchup. No, sir, it's all ad lib. Easier for me because I don't talk much all week.

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