Wednesday, May 23, 2012

"There Go the Dregs of Humanity"

Dear Readers,

I think one of the funniest lines in television was, “There go the dregs of humanity.”

It was a statement by Larry, of “I’m Larry, and this is my brother Darryl, and this is my other brother Darryl” Newhart show fame. Larry and his brothers just opened their new café in the small Vermont town close to the Stratford Inn run by Dick Loudon (Bob Newhart).

The café was visited by a group of work crew prisoners. As the prisoners were departing the cafe Larry uttered the famous line. I laugh hysterically every time I hear it, and my stomach bounces trying to hold my laughter in.

You have to get the picture in your mind. Larry, his brother Darryl, and his other brother Darryl were as backwoods as a person can get. An example of this is when Dick and Joanna found out there was a dead body buried in the basement of the Inn the three came with haste, picks, and shovels to dig it out.

Then Dick and Joanna changed their minds about digging out the body and called them up from the basement. The brothers were sorely disappointed. But their disappointment was short-lived when Joanna told them about a dead opossum out by the well. They ran with reckless abandon out of the Inn to dispose of the critter.

Larry, Darryl, and Darryl didn't realize they perhaps were looked on by the Vermont townsfolk as being odd, eccentric, and "the dregs of humanity". That's what made the line so funny.

Today I had a Chamber of Commerce meeting at the Salvation Army in Ashland, Ohio. I parked beside a car, and I kid you not, in which every nook and cranny, front seat and back, save the driver’s seat, was piled with trash of fast food containers and various things I don’t even want to think about. The car owner would not even be able to open the windows without fear of trash blowing out the window.

I did a double take, and later at the end of the meeting found myself joking about the car and the car owner with another participant of the meeting. In essence, not verbally, I pointed out that the car owner was a prime example of the “dregs of humanity”.

I was taken aback by my humor and quickly prayed for God to forgive me. It was an example of a sinner calling another sinner sinful. I found out that the car owner was a woman who had fallen on hard times and lived mostly in her car, and she came to the Salvation Army for socialization and nourishment.

At the Salvation Army I saw people of great contrasts. The Chamber meeting brought business owners and executives decked out in suits and ties as they tried to impress other business owners and executives to purchase their wares, goods, and services.

On the other hand there were people milling about with tattered and disheveled clothing, little education, and not trying to impress anyone. They were there to socialize, play bingo, and eat.

Where do I fit into the scheme of things? I am trying to identify with the elite in society to sell them something. But I really know that for a few breaks and the grace of God it could easily be said of me, "There go the dregs of humanity."

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:3

See you next time,


Joanne Sher said...

Great thoughts, Arlen (LOVED that show, by the way). God gives us these visuals, and it makes it so much clearer, doesn't it? Thanks. said...

Thanks Jo. I had been thinking of the Newhart statement for some time, but the Salvation Army experience brought it to light.

Unknown said...

You left out one important aspect of what made Larry's "dregs of humanity" comment so hysterically funny: He and his brothers Daryl were filthy at the moment, because they'd just been crawling through the sewer system. said...


I missed that. I'll have to watch it again. My wife and I watched all the Newhart shows together, but it's been a number of years ago.


kevin.talley said...

I thought of this line while studying Gal. 6:3 "3 For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself."
I'll have to mention it in my lesson tomorrow.

Thank You!