Generic Radio Workshop Script Library (BACK)

Series: Fibber McGee and Molly
Show: Fall Housecleaning
Date: Oct 21 1941

Harlow Wilcox, shameless pitchmeister
Fibber McGee
Molly, his wife
Old Timer
Mrs. Uppington
Wallace Wimple
Man

WILCOX:

The Johnson Wax Program (chuckle) with Fibber McGee and Molly!

MUSIC

WILCOX:

The makers of Johnson's Wax and Johnson's self-polishing Glo-Coat present Fibber McGee and Molly, written by Don Quinn, with songs by Martha Tilton and the Kings Men and music by Billy Mills.

MUSIC:

"SONG OF SPRING"

AUDIENCE APPLAUSE

WILCOX:

The saddest phrase, to man or mouse, is Come on, sweetheart, let's clean the house. And here at Number 79 where life till now was smooth and fine, comes labor, tough and acrobatic, like hauling junk down from the attic. Wives wallow in it, men think it folly. Like these two - Fibber McGee and Molly!

FIBBER:

Whew! Let's sit down and rest, Molly. Are you sweatin' as much as I am?

MOLLY:

McGee.

FIBBER :

Huh?

MOLLY:

Horses sweat, men perspire, and ladies glow.

FIBBER:

Okay, so I'm a horse. I'm a fat horse. I'm an overworked, swaybacked, mistreated beast of burden. Would you please lead me out to the kitchen and fill my trough full of root beer?

MOLLY:

You can have a root beer later. I want to get all this stuff sorted and thrown away. Now, for instance, look at those books on the shelf there.

FIBBER:

Yeah?

MOLLY:

We've got to weed those out, too.

FIBBER:

Which ones should we toss out?

MOLLY:

Well, let's throw out the two ones on the end and keep the one in the middle.

FIBBER:

What is the one in the middle?

MOLLY:

Franklin's autobiography.

FIBBER:

Oh, I want to read that one. That Franklin was a great oil (??).

SFX:

KNOCK ON DOOR

FIBBER:

Come in.

OLD TIMER:

Hello there, kids. Whatcha doin'?

MOLLY:

Hello there, Mister Old Timer, we're doing a bit of house cleaning. Do you want to help?

OLD TIMER:

How much?

FIBBER:

Two bits an hour, and feed your own charley horses.

OLD TIMER:

(high-pitched giggle) That's pretty good, Johnny. But it ain't the way I heerd it. The way I heerd it, one feller says to 'tother feller, "Say [singsong], Sal, who's this feller feudal that's been workin' with Fibber and Molly? Search me, says 'tother feller, where'd ja hear about him? In this radio column, says the first feller, See here? It says 'Futile attempts to be funny on Johnson's Wax Show.'" Hee-hee-hee. Nothin' personal, kids. You know how I feel about you. Although if you really knew how I feel about you, you might take it a lot more personal.. oh, say!

MOLLY:

Now what?

OLD TIMER:

Got a telegram fer ya.

FIBBER:

Oh!

OLD TIMER:

Sign here, Junior. Sign here.

FIBBER:

Oh thanks, Old Timer.

OLD TIMER:

Uh-huh.

FIBBER:

How much of a tip do you usually get?

OLD TIMER:

How much do you usually give?

MOLLY:

Oh, nothing. McGee says you when you accept a tip it undermines your character.

FIBBER:

(chuckle)

OLD TIMER:

Okay, then give me a quarter and let'er topple. Thanks, Johnny.:

AUDIENCE APPLAUSE.

MOLLY:

Well, who's the wire from, McGee?

SFX:

OPENING TELEGRAM.

FIBBER:

Hey! It's from my brother, Alexander.

MOLLY:

Zan?

FIBBER:

Yeah.

MOLLY:

Well, you haven't heard from him in a long time. What's he say?

FIBBER:

Says I arrived okay in San Francisco. Tough trip. Tired but happy.

MOLLY:

What's he mean, tough trip?

FIBBER:

Oh, he lost an election bet and had to push a peanut with his nose from New York to San Francisco.

MOLLY:

Heavenly days. Well, he still made pretty good time, didn't he?

FIBBER:

Oh, I don't know. He bet against McKinley.

MOLLY:

Well, let's get busy, McGee. The sooner we get to work, the sooner we'll get through.

FIBBER:

Yep. And the sooner we didn't start this in the first place the quicker I'd be happier right now.

MOLLY:

(laughs)

FIBBER:

If I'd ever realized what.. What you got there?

MOLLY:

Never you mind.

FIBBER:

What're you blushing about? What're you readin'?

MOLLY:

Well if you must know, it's some old love letters.

FIBBER:

Aaah, you mean you been keeping them things?

MOLLY:

Sure.

FIBBER:

You can't get me for breach of promise now.

MOLLY:

Here. Smell 'em, McGee.

FIBBER:

What do you mean, smell 'em? Did I write that bad?

MOLLY:

Now don't be silly. I've been keepin' them in sachet.

FIBBER :

Well you can sachet right back up to the attic with 'em. I don't want them things layin' around.

MOLLY:

Well I promise you, dearie, soon as I read them through once more, they'll be burnt up.

FIBBER:

And so will I.

MOLLY:

Ahh, this is a beautiful one. It says..

FIBBER:

Oh please! Molly, not out loud. Someone might be listening.

MOLLY:

Well if they aren't we'll hear from Racine. But listen. This says, "My precious, blue-eyed butterfly.."

FIBBER :

Oh, pshaw..

MOLLY:

"My precious, blue-eyed butterfly, spread your lovely golden wings and fly away with me tonight to a movie."

FIBBER:

I sure took that flight of fancy into a tailspin, didn't I?

MOLLY:

You certainly did.

FIBBER:

Well, maybe my letters weren't so hot, but I had to do something to beat that other guy's time.

MOLLY:

You mean Otis Cadwallader?

FIBBER:

(chuckle) Yeah. Otis X. Cadwallader.

MOLLY:

What do you mean, X. Cadwallader?

FIBBER:

You know what I mean. He knew you were crazy about Francis X. Bushman, so he put an X in his name, too.

MOLLY :

Well I think it was pretty devoted of him to change his name for me.

FIBBER:

I done better than that - I changed your name for me. Oh, anyway..

MOLLY:

Oh, McGee. Listen to this.

FIBBER:

I won't listen.

MOLLY:

Oh, all right. Heavenly days, this is sweet.

FIBBER:

What's it say? I guess I kinda got a morbid curiosity about them. When a guy realizes what a drip he's been, it's too late to fix the faucet.

AUDIENCE APPLAUSE

FIBBER:

That's an old saying - I just made up.

MOLLY:

Ah, this is beautiful. It says "I'll never forget the time I first touched your little hand. It was inside a bag of popcorn at the ballgame."

FIBBER:

That's disgusting. Mooning over touching a gal's greasy mitt in a big bag of salty popcorn.

MOLLY :

(laughs) Wait till you hear some of the others.

FIBBER:

I don't want to hear any more. Are we going to get this house cleared out or aren't we?

MOLLY:

Oh there's no hurry, dearie. I'm having fun.

FIBBER:

Well, I'm not. And if you persist in reading that tripe, then I'm gonna... I'm gonna..

MOLLY :

You're gonna what?

FIBBER:

I'm gonna lock myself away somewheres so I won't hear ya.

MOLLY :

Well go ahead.

FIBBER :

Well I will.

MOLLY:

Where?

FIBBER:

Right in here.

SFX:

CLOSET EXPLODES.

FIBBER:

And while I'm in here, I'll straighten out this closet.

MUSIC:

BRIDGE

FIBBER:

Hey, Molly. I'm thirsty. Can I have some root beer now?

MOLLY:

Later, McGee, later. Take that last box of rubbish out, and then take the slipcovers off the furniture.

FIBBER:

I want some root beer. Here I've been bustin' my biceps haulin' this junk around while you been settin' there readin' my silly old love letters.

MOLLY:

Well, they're not silly.

FIBBER:

Aahh..

MOLLY:

They're beautiful. Listen.

"Darling. When I hold you in my arms, even the nightingale stops his song, to listen to the music in my heart."

FIBBER:

Yeah..

MOLLY:

"The moon..."

WILCOX:

Well, hello folks, how's everything?

MOLLY:

Why, hello, Mr. Wilcox.

FIBBER:

(dispirited) Hi, Harlow.

WILCOX:

Well.. What are you looking so grumpy about, pal?

MOLLY:

He's annoyed with me, Mr. Wilcox. Just because I found some of my old love letters in the attic and I've been reading them.

FIBBER:

Well, dad-rat it, ain't that enough to be annoyed about? Stuff a guy writes in his flaming youth makes him sound like a clinker at my age.

MOLLY:

Let me read him one, dearie. Mr. Wilcox will judge for himself.

FIBBER:

No no no no no no. Don't be a pest with my past. Don't listen, Wilcox.

WILCOX:

No I want to hear this, Fibber. I was young once myself, you know.

FIBBER:

Oh yeah? You can't kid me. You were born in Racine, Wisconsin at the age of 25. With a derby hat and your nurse used three-cornered order blanks for di..

MOLLY:

McGee!

FIBBER:

Okay, they got it anyway.

MOLLY:

That's enough of that now.

FIBBER:

Okay Molly, go ahead, read my love letters to Mr. Wilcox. Break his heart. If any. (dramatic) What matters if I, poor fool, my innermost thoughts, my most sacred feelings be torn asunder for the laughter of the mob? What if I..?

WILCOX:

Oh, pipe down, Pagliacci. Your makeup is running. Go ahead, Molly, let me hear one of the great lover's little outbursts of passion.

MOLLY:

Well, here, I'll pick one out at random, Mr. Wilcox. The ink's a little faded, but I think I can make it out.

WILCOX:

When I write a letter I make sure the ink stays.

FIBBER:

You'd do anything to..

MOLLY:

McGee. Are you ready, Mr. Wilcox?

WILCOX:

Go ahead, quote the stupid to me, cupid.

MOLLY:

Well this one says, Dear Moonbeam..

WILCOX:

Moonbeam!

MOLLY:

Yes. "Dear Moonbeam. I could not sleep last night for thinking of your sweet face."

FIBBER:

I didn't write that stuff.

MOLLY:

"I got out of bed and dressed and walked over to your house and stood there under your window, thinking of you lying there asleep, with your lovely hair forming a Niagara of gold on your silken pillow. Suddenly I burst into song like a troubadour of old, serenading his loved one. Then your window opened softly and I got a pitcher of water on my head."

WILCOX:

(laughs)

MOLLY:

"Why didn't you tell me you had changed rooms with your old man, sweetheart?"

FIBBER:

Dad-rat it, Molly. If you haven't got any more regard for my feelings..

WILCOX:

Oh, be quiet, Fibber. What are you crabbing about? That stuff about the Niagara was pretty snappy.

FIBBER:

Well, I don't care if it.. Huh? You think it was?

WILCOX:

Why, certainly. Certainly it was. And baby, I know love letters when I hear 'em.

MOLLY:

Really?

WILCOX:

Why, sure. I get love letters all the time.

FIBBER:

Subtle, ain't he, folks? The Army deferred him when they learned the flat-footed way he gets into these things. (PFL) Go ahead, Wilcox.

WILCOX:

Well, listen to this. It's from a lady in St. Louis. "Dear Mr. Wilcox, you've brought joy and happiness into the lives of us housewives, learning about Johnson's self-polishing Glo-Coat has given us time for movies and beauty parlors and bridge parties. We love you for showing us how to protect our linoleum from wear and tear with none of the old-fashioned rubbing and scrubbing and buffing."

MOLLY:

Oh.

WILCOX:

"The work that used to take us hours we can now do in twenty minutes or less. So with love to you and Johnson's self-polishing Glo-Coat, I am sending you a little token of affection. Wear it always next to your heart. Devotedly yours, Mrs. .." Well, never mind her name. Now that's a love letter that is a love letter!

MOLLY:

Ooh, what did she send you,Mr. Wilcox. A lock of her hair?

WILCOX:

Nooo. This - a tiny little corner of her linoleum. Isn't it beautiful?

FIBBER:

Ah, stop kissing it, you big ninny!

WILCOX:

Well, when you use Glo-Coat, you can afford to wear your heart on your sleeve, pal. It makes work so easy you don't have to roll 'em up. So long now.

SFX:

DOOR SLAM.

MOLLY:

My, my. Mr. Wilcox never loses his enthusiasm, does he?

FIBBER:

The only way Wilcox could lose his enthusiasm is for someone to lose Wilcox.

MOLLY:

(Laughs.)

FIBBER:

If anyone'd make me a decent..

MOLLY:

Now McGee, we've got to get busy. Did you get all that junk carried out?

FIBBER:

Yes, I did. While you were daydreaming over those slushy little missiles of mine.

MOLLY:

No, you don't mean missiles. You mean missives.

FIBBER:

Do not. "Missive" means big, oversized.

MOLLY:

No. That's massive.

FIBBER:

I thought a massive was a guy who gave you a massage.

MOLLY:

No. That's a masseur.

FIBBER:

Masseur is "mister" in French.

MOLLY:

That's mon-sieur.

FIBBER:

Then what's a missile?

MOLLY:

A missile is something you throw.

FIBBER:

That's what I say - throw those letters out! (PFL) I ain't going to stand around here and have everybody snicker at me. I'm just..

MOLLY:

McGee, calm yourself and call the junkman to haul away that rubbish.

FIBBER:

Okay. Give me the phone.

MOLLY:

Here.

SFX:

PHONE LIFT

FIBBER:

Thanks. Hello, Operator. Give me the Wistful Vista junkyard at 14th and.. oooh, is that you, Myrtle?

MOLLY:

Every year the same thing.

FIBBER:

How's every little thing, Myrt? (Pause) Is, huh? What say, Myrt?

Your little brother? Say what? Cut off his feet?

MOLLY:

Oh, McGee. How awful.

FIBBER:

Oh, it was nothing. Kid brother wanted to build a fire without matches at the boy scout show. It was quite a feat but they didn't have time for it. (PFL) What say, Myrt? Oh, I'll call him later. So lon.. Huh? What say, Myrt? Your little sister? She what?

MOLLY:

McGee, please. Not another.

FIBBER:

Okay. Tell me next week, Myrt.

SFX:

PHONE HANGUP

FIBBER:

Can't get the junkman on the phone, Molly.

MOLLY:

Why not?

FIBBER:

Junkman cut the wire down.

MOLLY:

For what?

FIBBER:

Junk. (PFL) Hey, quit reading those letters, Molly. You promised..

SFX:

DOOR KNOCK.

FIBBER:

Who's that?

MOLLY:

Let me see. Oh,it's Mrs. Uppington.

FIBBER:

Surely you don't mean Mrs. Abigail Uppington, the prominent - in certain places - society leader.

MOLLY:

In the flesh, in the well-massaged, expensively corseted, slightly flabby flesh. Come in, Mrs. Flesh, er, uh, Mrs. Uppington. How do you do, Mrs. Uppington? Well, this is a surprise.

MRS. U:

How do you do Mrs. McGee, and Mr. McGee?

FIBBER:

Hi, Flabby. What cosmic upheaval has lured you out of your perfumed bower?

MRS. U:

My Fifi, my dear Fifi, is lost.

MOLLY:

Oh, heavenly days. Your Pekingese?

MRS. U:

(weeping) Oh, yes. My baby! I'm so upset, really.

FIBBER:

Oh, calm yourself, Uppy. Where was the little pert twerp seen last?

MOLLY:

And how was she dressed?

MRS. U:

She was last seen down the middle of the block, and she had on her best rhinestone collar, a Saks Fifth Avenue sweater and her little I. Leather bootees.

FIBBER:

Don't that make you sick, Molly. I mean to think of Fifi being lost?

MOLLY:

Yes. And better dressed than I am, too.

MRS. U:

No, no, dear. No levity. I am horribly perturbed.

FIBBER:

Why don't you advertise for her, Uppy?

MRS. U:

Ooh, it wouldn't so the slightest good, Mr. McGee. Fifi can't read.

MOLLY:

Have you searched the neighborhood, Abigail?

MRS. U:

Oh, yes. My butler Witherspoon spent the entire afternoon searching for her, going round and round the block calling "Fifi! Fifi! Fifi!"

FIBBER:

With what results?

MRS. U :

With the result that he was promptly trounced by a brutal truck driver at whom he had happened to be looking when he last called "Fifi!"

FIBBER:

Oh, don't worry about her, Abigail. She probably eloped with some traveling Airedale.

MRS.U:

(Gasp) Don't be ridiculous, Mr. McGee, Fifi would have nothing to do with other dogs. Why, she was almost as human as I.

FIBBER:

(Pause) Well, now that that golden opportunity has slipped past, let's..

MOLLY:

Let's discuss something more amusing. Look at these old love letters of mine, Abigail. I found them in the attic. Shall I read you a couple?

MRS. U:

Well, anything, dear, to get my mind off my poor little Fifi.

FIBBER:

I don't know why you're worried about that mutt, Uppy. Personally, I have always considered Fifi the kind of a dog that shouldn't happen to anybody.

MOLLY:

Yes, forget your grief for a moment, Abigail. I want to read you one of these letters.

FIBBER:

No, Molly. Please. Them letters are sacred between me and you.

MOLLY:

Don't be so fussy, dearie. Listen to this one, Mrs. Uppington. "Oh darling Molly Cuddles. When you refused to kiss me after the basketball game tonight, you broke my heart into tiny fragments. And sweetheart, there aren't many cures for a broken heart.."

MRS.U :

Ooh! Good heavens. "Many cures."

FIBBER:

What's the matter, Uppy?

MRS. U:

Manicure. I just remembered. I forgot and left Fifi at the beauty parlor getting a Marcel and a manicure.

MOLLY:

Aah.

MRS.U:

Oh that dear little thing. Why the little precious must almost have suffocated under that horrible dryer. Now if you'll excuse me.. Mother's coming, Fifi! Mother's coming!

AUDIENCE APPLAUSE

MUSIC:

BRIDGE

WILCOX:

Martha Tilton sings "Bayou Bye-O."

FIBBER:

Molly. Hey Molly. Mrs. McGee!

MOLLY:

Why, yes? You speaking to me, dearie?

FIBBER:

Speaking? I was yelling so loud my thorax will be thor for theven dayth.

MOLLY:

Well, I'm sorry. I was so interested in these letters that I didn't hear you.

FIBBER:

You know, Molly, I got thinking about those letters. They're not so bad, they're kind of poetic.

MOLLY:

Ooh, they're pretty drippy, McGee. You were absolutely right about destroying them.

FIBBER:

No, now wait a minute. After thinking it over, after all.. Hey! Whatcha gonna do?

MOLLY:

Throw them out the window onto the trash pile.

FIBBER:

Oh, no!

SFX:

LETTERS TOSSED

MOLLY:

There.

FIBBER:

Oh, Molly I think you shouldn't have done that.

MOLLY:

Well you were the one that wanted me to throw them out.

FIBBER:

Yeah, but after thinking it over and hearing you read 'em,..

SFX:

DOOR KNOCK

MOLLY:

Come in.

WIMPLE:

Hello, there, folks. I do hope I'm not intruding.

FIBBER:

Hi, Wimple, old man!

MOLLY:

Of course you're not intruding, Mr. Wimple. We were just cleaning out some old rubbish. Old love letters and things.

WIMPLE:

Oh, I could imagine a man writing a love letter to you, Mrs. McGee. But my wife, oh she'd never stand for such nonsense.

MOLLY:

Oh come, come, Mr. Wimple. Every woman has a streak of sentiment down in her heart someplace.

WIMPLE:

Not if she hasn't got a heart down in her someplace.

FIBBER:

Your better half sounds like a pretty chilly character, Wimple.

WIMPLE:

Oh she's really a wonderful woman, Mr. McGee. She's a great help to me when I'm writing verses for greeting cards.

MOLLY:

She is, really?

WIMPLE:

Yes, indeedy. Lots of time when I'm sitting there, beating my brains out for a rhyme, she comes in and helps me.

FIBBER:

I think I met your wife someplace, Wimple.

WIMPLE:

Could it have been on Halloween, riding her broom?

MOLLY:

Did you ever lose your temper with her, Mr. Wimple?

WIMPLE:

I've learned to control myself, Mrs. McGee. Yoga, you know.

FIBBER:

Yoga? How does it work, Wimple?

WIMPLE:

Just sitting still and concentrating. Preferably in solitude, Mr. McGee.

FIBBER and MOLLY:

Oooh.

WIMPLE:

I'll just sit for hours and hours imagining that my soul is free. Sometimes I sit crosslegged all day long, locked in a little room under our front stairs.

MOLLY:

What's the result?

WIMPLE:

The result is eventually my wife unlocks the door and I apologize and she lets me out. Well, goodbye now. Don't come over to our house sometime - you'd hate it.

AUDIENCE APPLAUSE

MOLLY:

Poor Mr. Wimple. You know, he's a little martyr, isn't he?

FIBBER:

Yep. But he wouldn't be a little martyr if he was a little smarter. Hey Molly, can I have some root beer now.

MOLLY:

Wait a few minutes, dear. Let's finish our work first. Now, let's see, if you'll take the rugs out..

SFX:

DOOR KNOCK

MOLLY:

Oh, dear. Come in.

MAN:

How do you do? Is Moonbeam here?

FIBBER:

Who, bud?

MAN:

Moonbeam. Otherwise known as Gorgeous Girl, My Peoria Prairie Flower, Sugarbun and Gypsy Sweetheart.

MOLLY:

What on earth is this man.. oh, those letters!

FIBBER:

You mean even he knows about those letters, Molly?

MAN:

Ah, you must be the Captain of the Dreamboat!

FIBBER:

Ah, gosh darn.

MAN:

Alias Tootsie. Alias A Million Kisses from You Know, and Desperate. Allow me, Tootsie, to return your letters.

MOLLY:

And where did you get these letters, Sir?

MAN:

Madam, I assure you I have committed no act against the postal regulations. I am not a mailbox marauder by nature. I was examining the house next door with a view toward renting it. And passing by your window I was suddenly struck on the fedora by an avalanche of billets-doux. And if Billy should do them again, I would be tempted to cram them down his sentimental gullet. Here, Dreamboat. Good day, Moonbeam.

FIBBER:

The nerve of that guy! He read 'em.

MOLLY:

All right, dearie. Let me take them.

FIBBER:

Hey! Hey! Whatchu gonna do with them?

MOLLY:

I'm going to burn them. Give me a match.

FIBBER :

Hey, now, wait! Let's not be hasty.

MOLLY:

What do you mean?

FIBBER:

Well, in spite of my embarrassment everybody that's heard or read any of those letters says they're pretty good, so I thought maybe I could sell them to a magazine or book publisher. Maybe they wouldn't be worth much, but it'd be something.

MOLLY:

You'll never publish my love letters, McGee. No sir. I promised I'd burn them up, and I'm going to.

FIBBER:

Oh, Molly. Don't do that. Please. You haven't got any right to.

MOLLY:

Oh, yes I have, dearie. They were mine.

FIBBER:

I wrote 'em, didn't it?

MOLLY:

No.

FIBBER:

What?

MOLLY:

These letters were from Otis Cadwallader.

FIBBER:

(laughs.) Huh, hey Moonbeam?

MOLLY:

Yes, Dreamboat?

FIBBER:

Can I have some root beer now?

MUSIC

FIBBER:

I'm sure glad you threw those letters out, Molly. Did you feel any bad effects from them?

MOLLY:

You mean, do I feel like crying?

FIBBER:

No, I mean did you catch cold, you know, wading through all that slush?

MOLLY:

Now, McGee, you're just jealous of Otis Cadwallader. You know, he was a very nice boy. And a wonderful dancer.

FIBBER:

Oh sure he was a wonderful dancer. He had to learn to dance.

MOLLY:

Why did he?

FIBBER:

The fellows down at the pool room gave him the hot foot so often..

MOLLY:

McGee.

FIBBER:

Good night.

MOLLY:

Good night, all.

MUSIC:

UP THEN OUT.

WILCOX:

This is Harlow Wilcox speaking for the makers of Johnson's Wax for home and industry inviting you to be with us again next Tuesday night, and reminding you that America's first line of defense is you and your support, so invest to the best of your ability in defense savings bonds. Good night.

ANNOUNCER:

This is the Red Network of the National Broadcasting Company.

MUSIC:

NBC CHIMES.