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Abdication vs. Retirement

March 18, 2013 | 9 Comments

Will you retire or will you abdicate? I'm just wondering if PHC will fade away or if you are planning to pass the torch like the Queen or Pope. Abdication sounds much more royal or upscale.

Maria Hoshaw


"Abdicate" is much too dramatic, Maria, and in my experience we use it -- "He abdicated all responsibility" -- to mean desertion, going AWOL, whereas "retire" is rather graceful. You slip away from a party and put on pajamas and bathrobe and come back downstairs and announce, "I think I shall retire. You all go on having a good time and I'll see you in the morning." That is what I would choose to do with PHC. The show started out with musicians who liked to come to my house and play music because we had a little gazebo in the backyard -- they lived in apartments in a cheap rundown part of town and my wife and I rented my brother's house in St. Anthony Park after he and his family moved to Madison -- and it was pretty simple to shift the party to a stage (though of course we suffered terrible self-consciousness and the host was sort of unbearable for a long while). And that urge to party is stronger than ever. When young musicians like Sara Watkins and the Punch Brothers and Old Crow Medicine Show have wound up in my living room after the show, they can stand around and play for hours off the tops of their heads and you hear The Weight followed by Sitting On Top Of The World and Old Joe Clark and The Old Home Place and Will You Miss Me When I'm Gone. So when the time comes, I'll step quietly into the wings and the show will quicken and get bolder and more boisterous. The trick is to do it before too many other people start thinking that you should. You want to appear Inimitable and Tireless and Astonishing right up to the end and then wave goodbye and disappear.


No Time

She says abdicate,
He says retire,
But clearly,
No such thing is happening
While there's still so much fire!


I hope you outlast me because I would miss your humor and inspiration. I'm a dulcimer player and lover of all kinds of music especially Appalacian Folk music and am an amateur poet, having written five books. A friend of mine several years ago told me about PHC and I haven't quit listening yet. Recently one of my poems was posted on My Little Town and I was very excited and honored by that. We have been to see you three times and I forced my first book upon you in Indianapolis at the Summer Love tour. The bravest thing I think I have ever done, other than giving birth. My husband and I love everything about the show and I listen online if I miss it Saturday night. Thanks for the fun, keep up the good work. We cannot let this kind of entertainment die. Thanks for keeping it alive. We love the whole cast and I have many of the CD's and listen all the time. God bless. Sherron from Bedford, IN


Coming back from a holiday party one winter Saturday night, not knowing what my radio was tuned to (back in the days when you used a knob to "tune in" the radio station) I heard "The Lives of the Cowboys". It cracked me up, though it's possible some of my silliness could have been the after effects of the party. Fast forward about 5 years when on a job assignment in Michigan I become friends with a Mid-Westerner who gave me the specifics about APHC, such as station id (Public) and time (evening). In the excitement of moving back home and job change, I lost track of the show. Fast forward another 5 years to when I wake up alertly after being sick for a number of days with my radio tuned to guessed it ...APHC! Been listening regularly every since...the show brought has brought me happiness & calmness while the rest of my life was/is chaotic. Thanks, Garrison and APHC cast & guests... My pleasure is both the quality, and that you take the time to do the shown. I understand that Life has it cycles. Here's hoping we continue to go through the cycles having each other.

Garrison, please don't ever retire. I, along with thousands more, enjoy your program more than any other on radio (and sometimes more than what is on TV). Your sense of humor and the music and skits take me back to my childhood in Illinois in the 1950's when radio was more a part of the family. Sitting around the radio on our screened in porch listening to humorous programs or baseball games was the greatest (although I don't think I appreciated the impact of it at the time). I have been lucky enough to see your show live 3 times and have it on my bucket list to see as many more as possible. Your show is a treasure!
Marilyn from Kentucky

the saddle only fits your backside,so you'll just have to go on it (in it?)

Benjamin Richardson's wonderful posting on March 3 reminded me of how many folks are from Lake Woebegone without claiming to be native sons.

I have dreamed for many years of attending a live taping of APHC. Each time it is close to me I miss it for some reason. Garrison has been to KY several times in the last few years and each time I miss him. Usually the tickets are snatched up quickly. I have been holding my breath in anticipation of the new schedule. I was so worried that Garrison would retire. Happy to see a posting of the 2013-14 schedule.
Sheldon from the edge of the nowhere Kentucky.

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