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This month's featured animal is


Carol Post, Wilbur Post and Mister Ed

Mister Ed is a talking golden palomino horse. He lives with architect Wilbur Post (Alan Young) and his new wife, Carol (Connie Hines) who discovered a horse (Ed) left by the previous owners in the backyard stable. Mister Ed refused to talk to anyone but Wilbur and explained he could always talk but until then he just hadn't felt like speaking. When anyone else walked into the stable Ed quickly turned silent. Ed's first words to Wilbur were "HOW NOW BROWN COW." Ed did talk to others but it was rare. On one occasion, Ed talked to a boy at the kiddy park pony ride; and another time Ed, disguised as a zebra, told a little boy not to believe his scoutmaster's zoo lecture that zebras were smarter that horses. Over time Ed has revealed the following reasons why he speaks to Wilbur:  

- Because, inside, you're all horse.; 
- Because you love animals. Because you trust them; 
- I got tired of talking to parrots, and you were the next step up; 
- Because you're the only one I like well enough to talk to, Wilbur; 
- I only talk to you and dumb animals.

When not talking to Wilbur, Mister Ed keeps busy with his hobbies, among them writing and women. Ed once wrote a book about his life called Love and the Single Horse, or The True Adventures of a Palomino Playboy. An excerpt follows: 

"I will never forget my first love, Yvette. She was only a little French filly, but Ooh, la, la! A kiss from her would melt your horseshoes. And what a shame...she had so many curves, her saddle kept falling off!" 

Some of Mister Ed's love interests included Chiquita, the Spanish filly; Daphne, a western movie star filly; Fatima, a foreign spy filly; Miss February, the Playhorse calendar filly, Flossy, the chestnut filly with great legs; Francesca, the Italian filly; Fujiyama, the Japanese filly, Gigi, a French filly; Flashaway, the pin-up filly; and Ilsa, Suzette, and Lady Linda.      

Although, it may appear that the outspoken Mr. Ed is a well-rounded horse about town, he does have his phobias and vulnerabilities.  They included water, fat men with whiskers, cockatoos, cats, prowlers, wooden carousel horses, and heights (he inherited a fear of heights from his grandfather who fell off a cliff while chasing a filly).         

TRIVIA NOTE: The series MISTER ED/SYN/CBS/1961-66 was conceived by Arthur Lubin, who directed the Francis the Mule movies produced by Universal Pictures. The series was based on twenty-eight short stories written by Walter Brooks about a talking horse named Mister Ed. In the original stories, Mister Ed recited Hamlet, spoke Latin, had a fear of spies and drank until he got drunk. His owners Wilbur and Carlotta Pope lived in Mount Kisco, New York; and Wilbur worked at the architectural firm of Lamson, Camphire, Leatherbee & Wallet. B-western cowboy star Allan "Rocky" Lane provide the voice of Mister Ed on the TV series. Mister Ed was actually a horse named Bamboo Harvester foaled in 1949 in El Monte, California. His parents were  The Harvester (Sire), a Saddlebred owned by Edna and Jim Fagan; and Zetna, (Dam) who was sired by Antez, an Arabian imported from Poland. [per the Palomino Horse Association]. The talented Bamboo Harvester was able to open doors, untie knots, wave a flag, answer the phone and write notes with a large pencil. On May 21, 1997 an original set of Mr. Ed's horseshoes, circa 1961 were placed on the auction block of Sotheby's Entertainment Memorabilia auction for $8-10,000. In a "Then & Now" interview (People Weekly 7/17/95 p. 44) Alan Young recalled "Ed was in show business two weeks when they changed his name and castrated him. Happens to many of us," he chuckled." Psst! It's not true that if you play the MISTER ED theme song backwards you hear a satanic message. Grow Up! 

Text from the TV series Theme Song 

Written by J. Livingston and R. Evans 

Hello, I'm Mister Ed 

A horse is a horse, of course, of course 

And no one can talk to a horse, of course 

That is, of course, unless the horse

Is the famous Mister Ed

 Go right to the source and ask the horse

 He'll give you the answer that you endorse

He's always on a steady course

Talk to Mister Ed 

People yakkety-yak a streak

 And waste your time of day

But Mister Ed will never speak

Unless he has something to say

A horse is a horse, of course, of course

And this one will talk 'til his voice is hoarse 

You never heard of a talking horse? 

Well listen to this: I am Mister Ed


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