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The Fat Lady? She Did Sing, After All!

Updated on April 14, 2011

Many and various are the "fat ladies" who sang

She finally put us out of our misery!
She finally put us out of our misery!
You have to keep abreast of these proverbs!
You have to keep abreast of these proverbs!

Who would know!? There was a Fat Lady!

One of the most popular sayings in sports over the last 40 or so years is, "It ain't over 'till the fat lady sings." Although first use of this over the air has been attributed to Dan Cook, the line has been a southern proverb much earlier than that, as, "The Carnival (or the Church) ain't over until the fat lady has sung." Whether or not there was a specific overweight femme who sung around the south in the early days was not known. Southern belles may not be greatly known for their nightingale qualities, but many are well covered, so the choice would have been limitless.
The evocative line has been used by many celebrities, including Humphrey Bogart in one of his movies - I forget which.
In any event, many may have wondered if this poor diva would have to hold her breath for all time without ever finishing her song. I am about to explode this myth and offer surcease.
Yes this scribe found some old jottings brought to light after the New Orleans hurricane, which indicated there was a fat lady who sang - and she possessed powers that those blithely repeating this old mantra might well heed!

The story was thus, title and verse supplied by your chronicler.

Bogey's Requiem.
"Who would have believed it could happen?
Weeks, months, years flashed by.
She sat there like eternity:
Hands folded; still as the grave.
Cast as one, the massive Steinway and her.

Then one shrill Autumn evening;
My breath catching in a sob,
I saw it had begun.
Aghast, I watched the tiny tic, tic, tic,
Commencing at the larded temples;
Travel hideously down the vinous cheeks.

The porcine jowls began to quiver;
The bolstered bosom heaved;
The cracked lips puffed - parted.
Somewhere a chord sounded.
Mesmerized, I watched the beringed hands
Crawl along the stained ivories.

With a sigh of resignation
I put aside my sheet music;
Carefully filed my tattered scores;
Crossed over to my rumpled pallet
Lay down with arms folded on my chest.
It was over; the Fat Lady had begun to sing."

(from “Charged Particles,” copyright filed).


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    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 6 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Thanks Rebecca. I feel a bit jaded with HP. Bob

      cathylynne. Yeah. I was quite happy about this poem. Bob

    • cathylynn99 profile image

      cathylynn99 7 years ago from northeastern US

      voted funny. even when you're at odds with the question of what to write, you do well. nice hearing from you.

    • Rebecca E. profile image

      Rebecca E. 7 years ago from Canada

      oh this was great, you have style! (hack?? don't you dare say that again!)

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 7 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Ha.Ha! Yep, that's the definitive word all right! Bob

    • Spirit Whisperer profile image

      Xavier Nathan 7 years ago from Isle of Man

      Well Mr Sherlock Holmes you certainly have cracked this case. Thank you.

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 7 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Thanks Hubby...a bit late, I'm afraid, Bob

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 7 years ago from UK and Mexico

      What a nice comment. Thanks Bob

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 7 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Yes, Frog Prince, Oprah has always given me pause!

      Thanks Trish, lovely praise from a homey

      Austinstar...I will defer all this for a while!

      Bob cheers guys

    • Austinstar profile image

      Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

      I beg to differ, I haven't even learned how to sing yet!

    • Trish_M profile image

      Tricia Mason 7 years ago from The English Midlands

      Hi Diogenes

      That is a strange little saying ~ thank you for casting some light on it :)

      Very good!!!

    • The Frog Prince profile image

      The Frog Prince 7 years ago from Arlington, TX

      I had visions of Oprah flash through my mind as I read along. Scary huh?

      The Frog

    • profile image

      diogenes 7 years ago

      Thanks Will...Bob

    • profile image

      diogenese 7 years ago

      La placer is mio, princesa! Rx

    • profile image

      Lady_Tenaz 7 years ago

      This was great! Thanks for letting us know.

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 7 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      All is well in diva-ville

      When the soprano hits high c

      That's when the fat lady sings

      And the opera is over, you see


      Voted up and funny.

    • profile image

      diogenese 7 years ago

      Thanks Bobbi. Truth tell, I am out of ideas of what to write at the moment and am a bit bored with it all. Can't help feeling it's a bit of a use really.

      I actually submitted this poem to the New Yorker magazine - top prestige. I haven't seen it in there yet! Bob

    • BobbiRant profile image

      BobbiRant 7 years ago from New York

      This was great. We all are familiar with it ain't over until the fat lady sings yet never really think much about its origin. Great hub, very entertaining.