Cultivating Some South Dakota Humor

If you enjoy meeting South Dakotans and learning about places in South Dakota, or like listening to radio talk shows that make you laugh, you should definitely give The Rock Garden Tour your ears. Oh yeah, the show also discusses horticulture stuff in the most unusual ways.

The hour long program is an affiliate of South Dakota Public Broadcasting Saturday nights 7 pm (6 MT) or Sunday’s encore 11 pm (10 MT) and is a total hoot. I stumbled upon the Rock Garden Tour’s funny men, Flower Man and Oil Can at the 2009 annual South Dakota Festival of Books in Deadwood. They were doing a live taping of the show located above the No. 10 Saloon at the Deadwood Social Club. If you check out their archives and listen to the Deadwood Live episode, listen carefully–you can probably hear me clapping in the background. Attending the live show as a backup plan ended up being a highlight of the festival for me and a pleasant resource for South Dakota humor to add to my column writing inspiration.

Much of the show entails airing the program from different locations around South Dakota, which I love, and features interesting little known or oddball facts from these locations and interviews with locals along with horticulture topics and tips. Combined with music, The Rock Garden Tour is comparable to a meal that a houseful of male college roommates would cook up for dinner. Something of an assortment of ingredients I would never think of putting together but once simmered down is a pleasant and palatable surprise that sends you back for another helping.

I love the “witty banter,” Oil Can’s comical interjections,  the not-your-ordinary interviews, and their catch phrases  like “the Tavern Belt.” The music is, umm…unusual. Flower Man is definitely not prejudiced when it comes to music. I’ve heard a few country songs and voices I recognize and many more I’ve listened to with the attitude of broadening my music listening horizons.

The recent show entitled “Test Plot” (1/22/11) was about avoiding talking about South Dakota winters, shoveling snow, blizzards, etc. and trying something new. It inspired my upcoming column called “The Farmer’s and Rancher’s Horoscope.”

Do a little humor cultivating of your own in The Rock Garden Tour. It’s worth a listen, a laugh, and a lesson in horticulture with a South Dakota twist. I love South Dakota.  

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *