Generic Radio Workshop Script Library (BACK)

Series: The Bickersons
Show: Valentine's Day
Date: Feb 13 1948

CAST:
ANNOUNCER
CLARA
BLANCHE
JOHN

ANNOUNCER:

Now here are Don Ameche and Frances Langford as John and Blanche Bickerson in "The Honeymoon is Over."

MUSIC:

THEME ... THEN OUT BEHIND--

ANNOUNCER:

For once, the walls of the Bickerson' apartment do not resound with the persistent snoring of husband John, more's the pity. There can be only one reason for this astounding phenomenon. John Bickerson is not home. Two o'clock in the morning finds Mrs. Bickerson on the telephone with sister Clara. Listen.

CLARA:

(FILTER) What did you say, Blanche?

BLANCHE:

I said I haven't heard from John since he left for work. You'd think he'd telephone me or something.

CLARA:

(FILTER) Well, maybe he tried to call. You've had the phone tied up for over an hour, Blanche. You've called me three times.

BLANCHE:

He's never done this before. I think he wants to upset me. He gets so angry every time I spend a dollar. He says I'm the biggest spendthrift in California. Am I, Clara?

CLARA:

(FILTER) I don't think so.

BLANCHE:

Well, John does. And you know how careful I am about money.

CLARA:

(FILTER) Yes, Blanche. Well, I have to give the baby his bottle.

BLANCHE:

You do? What time is it there in New York? ...

CLARA:

(FILTER) It's almost five-thirty in the morning. Georgie gets a bottle every two hours now; he's four weeks old. He isn't gaining much, though.

BLANCHE:

What does he weigh?

CLARA:

(FILTER) Sixty-one pounds. ... I don't like the doctor we have now. He thinks George is too heavy.

BLANCHE:

I think he's the cutest little thing I ever saw. Did John's shoes fit him all right? ...

CLARA:

(FILTER) Well, they pinch a little, in the toes.

BLANCHE:

Oh, you can get 'em fixed.

SFX:

DOOR SHUTS, OFF

BLANCHE:

Oh, I think John's here. Goodbye, Clara.

SFX:

HANGS UP PHONE

BLANCHE:

(CALLS) John!

JOHN:

(OFF) I can't find the blasted light switch.

BLANCHE:

Oh, I'm so glad you're home, sweetheart. I'm in here.

JOHN:

Huh?

BLANCHE:

Never mind the lights. Come right to bed, darling.

JOHN:

Oh, I must have the wrong apartment. ... (MOVING OFF) Excuse me, madam.

BLANCHE:

John, come back here!

JOHN:

(UNENTHUSIASTIC) Oh, hello.

BLANCHE:

Where have you been?

JOHN:

Working. Let me get undressed; I'm exhausted.

BLANCHE:

Why didn't you call? Don't throw your good coat on the floor, John!

JOHN:

You can sweep it up in the morning. ...

BLANCHE:

No call, no message, no nothing. Why didn't you call?

JOHN:

Didn't have a nickel.

BLANCHE:

You did, too. You had a quarter in your pocket this morning. Who'd you take to dinner tonight? ...

JOHN:

The whole chorus from Earl Carroll's. ... That's me, boy -- "Diamond Jim" Bickerson! ...

BLANCHE:

Don't be so funny.

JOHN:

Oh, I'm not funny; I'm exhausted.

BLANCHE:

I bet you never even thought of calling me. Other men call their wives. If Mel Shaw leaves the house for even five minutes, he calls Louise.

JOHN:

Calls her what? ...

BLANCHE:

Fat lot you care about me. I've been sitting here worrying myself into a stew. What did you eat?

JOHN:

Stew. ...

BLANCHE:

John Bickerson, let me look at you! Are you sure you've been at the office till now?

JOHN:

Well, where do you think I've been?

BLANCHE:

I don't know. You didn't pass a cocktail bar on your way home, did you?

JOHN:

I never pass a cocktail bar! ...

BLANCHE:

That's what I thought. You had a drink.

JOHN:

I did not.

BLANCHE:

You had more than one.

JOHN:

I didn't have any.

BLANCHE:

Then why are you trying to take your pants off over your head? ...

JOHN:

What pants? This is the sweater you made for me out of your old slacks. ... I'm the only man in town with a V-neck seat. ...

BLANCHE:

Stop complaining. It keeps you warm.

JOHN:

Put out the lights, Blanche, I can't hold my eyes open.

BLANCHE:

John, you're not gonna sleep in that horrible old sheepskin vest?!

JOHN:

Well, I'm cold.

BLANCHE:

Take it off. It looks hideous.

JOHN:

Nobody sees it.

BLANCHE:

Now, you just get up and put on some pajamas.

JOHN:

I hate pajamas. They strangle me.

BLANCHE:

Well, you can't wear that thing.

JOHN:

Can, too.

BLANCHE:

What if there's a fire?

JOHN:

I won't go! ... Good night, Blanche.

BLANCHE:

You just get out of that bed and hang up your clothes. Don't leave them for me.

JOHN:

Blanche, I'm sleepy.

BLANCHE:

I'm always crawling under the dresser and picking up your collar buttons! Pick up your ties! And pick up your handkerchiefs! What do you think I am -- a vacuum cleaner?

JOHN:

No, Blanche. A vacuum cleaner can be turned off. ... Look, Blanche, do me a favor, will ya? I worked eighteen hours today. Just let me close my eyes for a couple of hours, will ya?

BLANCHE:

I'm afraid the minute you fall asleep you'll start snoring.

JOHN:

No, I won't snore. I never snore.

BLANCHE:

How can you say that? You've never missed a single night since the second day we were married.

JOHN:

(DRIFTING OFF TO SLEEP) Mmm.

BLANCHE:

You snore on Monday, you snore on Tuesday. On Wednesday you snore, on Thursday you snore. So what'll you do tonight?

JOHN:

(A LONG, LOUD SNORE) ...

BLANCHE:

Oh, for--!

JOHN:

(THE FAMOUS BICKERSON SNORE CONCLUDES WITH A COMICAL, HIGH-PITCHED TAIL ... ANOTHER BIG SNORE, WITH A GOOFY FINISH)

BLANCHE:

Nobody would believe it.

JOHN:

(ANOTHER BIG SNORE, ENDING WITH A BIRD-LIKE TRILL) ...

BLANCHE:

I'm married to a cellar pump!

JOHN:

(ANOTHER BIG SNORE, ENDING WITH WHAT SOUNDS LIKE A FALSETTO CHUCKLE) ... (A FINAL SNORE, ENDING LIKE AN OUT-OF-CONTROL CACKLE) ...

BLANCHE:

John! John! You promised you wouldn't snore -- and the minute you closed your eyes, you started!

JOHN:

(WAKES, TEARFUL) Blanche, what do you want from me?

BLANCHE:

I won't stand for it! Go sleep in the guest room!

JOHN:

We haven't got a guest room.

BLANCHE:

If you were a good husband, you'd see that we had two guest rooms.

JOHN:

(EXHALES HELPLESSLY)

BLANCHE:

You used to have plenty of ambition before we were married.

JOHN:

Mmm.

BLANCHE:

Whatever happened to your get-up-and-go?

JOHN:

It got up and went. ...

BLANCHE:

I might have known you'd be like you are -- selfish, inconsiderate and thoughtless. You didn't even send me a Valentine card.

JOHN:

St. Valentine's Day isn't until tomorrow. It's still tonight.

BLANCHE:

Tonight was yesterday. Today is tomorrow. ...

JOHN:

What?

BLANCHE:

And I know you didn't send a card because you didn't send me one last year.

JOHN:

Well, I forgot last year.

BLANCHE:

You always forget. You forgot my birthday. Bet you don't even know when you married me, do you?

JOHN:

No, I don't.

BLANCHE:

John Bickerson! You don't know when you married me?!

JOHN:

When?! Oh, I thought you said why. ...

BLANCHE:

I suppose you think you were a great catch. I could have married a half a dozen of the wealthiest men in town. No, I had to fall for your smooth talk. You kept calling me your "buried treasure." Didn't you?

JOHN:

Didn't I what?

BLANCHE:

Didn't you always call me your "buried treasure"?

JOHN:

Maybe I did.

BLANCHE:

Well, what have you got to say now?

JOHN I'm sorry I dug ya up. ... Good night, Blanche.

BLANCHE:

Sorry you dug me up! There wasn't another girl in our crowd who ever gave you a second look.

JOHN:

Oh, I don't know about that. Most of those dames thought I had what it takes.

BLANCHE:

Maybe you had it, but who took it? ... What did I get out of this marriage? Jewels? No. Clothes? No. Money? No. What did I get?

JOHN:

No. ...

BLANCHE:

I'll tell you what I got. A one-room apartment and a leaky icebox!

JOHN:

(MUTTERS WEARILY) A leaky icebox.

BLANCHE:

Every night my pillow was wet from my tears!

JOHN:

Put a pan under it. ...

BLANCHE:

You're not listening to me. You don't care what happens. I wish I'd never been born.

JOHN:

Oh, Blanche, what's the matter with you?! Why don't you go to sleep?!

BLANCHE:

How can I sleep? How can I sleep when I know you don't love me?

JOHN:

Who said I don't love you?!

BLANCHE:

Well, you never tell me you do.

JOHN:

I tell ya a thousand times a day! I offered to pay a man fifty dollars for a six-inch tattoo that says "John Loves Blanche"! ... Why did you object?

BLANCHE:

Because it would show when I wore my evening gown. ...

JOHN:

Well, I was gonna let him do it on me, too. Anything to put a stop to that same question, night after night after night.

BLANCHE:

If you'd only say it once of your own accord, I'd never ask you.

JOHN:

Okay. I love you.

BLANCHE:

Do you love me only?

JOHN:

Yes.

BLANCHE:

When I'm away from you?

JOHN:

Yes!

BLANCHE:

Well, say it.

JOHN:

I love you only when you're away from me. ...

BLANCHE:

I guess you do. Maybe that's why you stayed out, cavorting, until two o'clock this morning.

JOHN:

I wasn't cavorting; I was working!

BLANCHE:

What for?

JOHN:

Because I get paid for overtime and we need the money! (QUIETLY) I have to make a payment on my car next week. Eighty-four dollars.

BLANCHE:

Where will you get that?

JOHN:

I got it; it's in the desk drawer.

BLANCHE:

No, it isn't.

JOHN:

It is, too; I looked yesterday.

BLANCHE:

You didn't look today. ...

JOHN:

Oh, Blanche--!

BLANCHE:

There's only sixty dollars in that drawer, John.

JOHN:

What happened to the other twenty-four dollars?

BLANCHE:

Don't look at me!

JOHN:

Listen, Blanche, there are only two people who have a key to that drawer -- you and I -- and twenty-four dollars is missing!

BLANCHE:

Well, let's each put back twelve dollars and say no more about it. ...

JOHN:

I knew it. I knew it! What did you blow it on?

BLANCHE:

I had to pay the phone bill! Made a few long-distance calls.

JOHN:

Long distance calls?! Who did you call for twenty-four dollars?

BLANCHE:

My sister Clara. I was worried. She had a tooth pulled.

JOHN:

(HYSTERICAL) How could you squander my money like that?! I deny myself everything! Do I even buy toothpaste? No! I've been brushing my teeth with a whisk broom! ... I stick tinfoil in my cavities to save on dentist's bills! ... I've been wearing an upper plate that belongs to my cousin! ... And she calls New York every five minutes!

BLANCHE:

Don't make such a fuss! Clara's my only sister and I have a perfect right to call her. Anyway, Barney's in the hospital.

JOHN:

Who's Barney?

BLANCHE:

Clara's husband. When he was out looking for a job, he tripped over a bar rail and two cases of bourbon fell on his head. ...

JOHN:

Well, it's the first time the drinks were ever on him. ...

BLANCHE:

How can you say that? Barney's not cheap. He takes good care of Clara. She has a lovely home and they've got money for everything.

JOHN:

(SARCASTIC) Oh, sure -- money for everything.

BLANCHE:

Don't sneer. Last week Clara had her tonsils taken out, and Venetian blinds put in. ...

JOHN:

With a mouth like hers, they could do it. ... That bum Barney isn't workin'! Where do they get the dough?

BLANCHE:

Accident insurance. He's collected a fortune on accident insurance. Every time Clara has a baby, he jumps off the roof. ...

JOHN:

What?

BLANCHE:

He doesn't hurt himself too bad -- just enough to collect the insurance. (BEAT, GETS AN IDEA) You haven't got any, have you, John? ...

JOHN:

No, I don't want to talk about it. I want to sleep.

BLANCHE:

But suppose something happens to you? What if you have an accident and you can't work?

JOHN:

Then we'll starve.

BLANCHE:

We're starving now.

JOHN:

That's too bad.

BLANCHE:

It's easy for you to talk like that. If anything happened, I'd be left helpless and destitute. Why don't you get some accident insurance, John?

JOHN:

I'll get some next week.

BLANCHE:

You say it, but you won't do it. Why don't you get it now?

JOHN:

What?

BLANCHE:

Go on! Get up and get some accident insurance. ...

JOHN:

Blanche, are you out of your mind? It's almost three o'clock in the morning.

BLANCHE:

Well, people have accidents all hours of the night. ...

JOHN:

I'm not gonna have any accidents tonight!

BLANCHE:

How do you know?

JOHN:

Blanche, why don't you let me sleep?!

BLANCHE:

Well, just promise me you'll get some accident insurance!

JOHN:

Why?!

BLANCHE:

Because it's a wonderful protection. Clara told me two weeks ago a man broke his hip and he got five thousand dollars. Last week, Barney fractured his skull and got ten thousand dollars.

JOHN:

Well, what about it?

BLANCHE:

Next week, you may be the lucky one! ...

JOHN:

Good night, Blanche.

BLANCHE:

Good night, John.

MUSIC:

FINISH

SFX:

APPLAUSE ...