Generic Radio Workshop Script Library (BACK)

Series: Fibber McGee and Molly
Show: Fibber Paints a Christmas Tree White
Date: Dec 18 1945

S.C. JOHNSON & SON INC.
FIBBER McGEE AND MOLLY
TUESDAY 6: 30 PM PST NBC
DECEMBER 18, 1945

WIL:

THE JOHNSON WAX PROGRAM - WITH FIBBER McGEE AND MOLLY!

ORCHESTRA:

THEME...FADE FOR:

WIL:

The makers of Johnson's Wax products for home and industry present Fibber McGee and Molly, written by Don Quinn and Phil Leslie, with music by the King's Men and Billy Mills' Orchestra!

ORCHESTRA:

"WELCOME HOME"...FADE FOR:

OPENING COMMERCIAL

WIL:

What two things are you most anxious to have in your home? Aren't they beauty and cleanliness? Think for a moment how easily and inexpensively you can have both beauty and cleanliness - just with an occasional application of genuine JOHNSON'S WAX to your floors, furniture and woodwork. A rich, mellow, polished wax surface is a thing of beauty in itself. The wax brings out the grain and beauty of the wood - it adds a soft luster to leather, linoleum and metal surfaces. And, of course, this tough wax film protects these surfaces against wear, dirt and moisture. Dust and dirt do not adhere readily to a wax-polished surface, so cleaning is not only easier, but a waxed home is actually cleaner and more sanitary. JOHNSON'S WAX is of the very finest quality, and long wearing. The cost is really very little - so why not practice protective housekeeping in your home with genuine JOHNSON'S WAX. Dealers everywhere carry it.

ORCHESTRA:

"WELCOME HOME"...FINISH



WIL:

There are certain people who simply won't admit that nature does anything right. They are the kind who gild cattails, paint "Whose little tootsie are you?" on the shells of baby turtles, and clip poodle dogs to look like anaemic lions. Here's one of those people now ... as we meet.........

FIBBER MCGEE AND MOLLY!

APPLAUSE:

FIB:

Hey, Fred...how much you charge me to paint this Christmas tree white?

FRED:

Why do you want it white, McGee?

FIB:

Whaddye mean, why do I want it white? You got a hundred trees in this lot you've painted white.

FRED:

Yeah...and I think they're horrible. But...some people like 'em that way.

FIB:

Never mind the artistic comment, Fred. How much?

FRED:

Ten Dollars.

FIB:

TEN DOLLARS! To spray a little white paint on this half-pint tree? Who do you think you are? Rembrandt? Look maybe you didn't understand. I want this tree painted white. Not gold-plated.

FRED:

Ten Bucks.

FIB:

You're a pirate! And I'll bet you've made 200 dollars already today!

FRED:

You're a cheapskate. And I've made three hundred and forty.

FIB:

You're a robber! And you wanna sell a half interest in the lot?

FRED:

You're a stupe. And I wouldn't sell my own mother a half interest.

FIB:

You're a low down dirty...

ORCHESTRA:

BRIDGE

SOUND:

FOOTSTEPS UP ON PORCH: DOOR OPENS: DOOR CLOSES

FIB:

(To himself) The dirty swindler. Ten bucks to spray a little tree like that white...the rat! Cheatin' people right and left...makin' four hundred bucks a day. The chiseler! I dunno whether to report him to the O.P.A. or make him a better offer for the half interest. The lowdown...

MOL:

(Fade in) What's the matter McGee? This time.

FIB:

Ahh, that guy, Fred Corrigan that runs the Christmas tree lot at 14th and Oak...the dirty pine broker. Wanted to charge me ten bucks to paint our Christmas tree white.

MOL:

That does seem a little high, dearie. But think of the work there is to it...putting all those needles back on after the paint dries.

FIB:

They don't take the needles off. They just spray the tree. Whish! Whish! Whish! That's all there is to it!

MOL:

Well, if WHISHING will make it so, why don't you do it yourself?

FIB:

If it's a ten dollar job, I can't afford to pay myself that much. Besides, I haven't got a paint spray, so...Hey! Haven't we gotta paint spray attachment on the vacuum cleaner? My gosh, I can have that tree painted white before you can say, "Doesn't that look awful."

MOL:

Oh now McGee...please..I realize we need the house painted, but not on the inside. Let's leave the tree green.

FIB:

You'll love a white one, snooky. It's the modern thing! Nobody uses green trees anymore. They're out-moded.

MOL:

You don't say! Well, tell me, Salvador, what color snow are people using this year? Chartreuse?

FIB:

No kidding, Molly...white Christmas trees are all the rage.

MOL:

They must be...they throw me into one. Look, sweetheart, just put the tree up and trim it. I love a green Christmas tree...

SOUND:

DOOR OPENS

MOL:

...don't you, Alice?

SOUND:

DOOR CLOSES

ALICE:

(Fade in) Don't I what, Mrs. McGee?

FIB:

Look, Molly...I'll put it to Alice fair and square, and let her give an opinion. Here's the preposition, kid. If you were gonna have a Christmas tree...which would you rather have? A dusty, drab, dirty old green one, or a bright, snappy, glistening white one?

MOL:

Which, Alice?

ALICE:

Mistletoe.

FIB:

Mistletoe!!! What an answer.

ALICE:

Jeepers, don't you like to hang a little bouquet of mistletoe, Mr. McGee?

MOL:

He's too shy, Alice.

FIB:

I am not shy. But what good is mistletoe? Catch somebody under it, and it's either somebody you can kiss anyway, like your wife, or you get a slap in the chops before you can point up to it. Mistletoe! That's just poison ivy with berries.

MOL:

We'll put some up, Alice, and you'll see who manages to spend most of his time loitering around beneath it. But honestly, dear..do you like a white Christmas tree?

ALICE:

I like 'em all, Mrs. McGee. I don't care if they're purple. Gertrude always has a white one, though, and she likes 'em.

FIB:

Who's Gertrude? We know her?

ALICE:

She's the boy who always rides past here in the cream colored Cadillac and honks his horn's sister.

MOL:

I see. Himself here used to go with a man who owned a Stutz Bearcat's niece.

FIB:

Yeah, but I gave her up for an old guy with a broken down Maxwell's daughter. But honestly now, Alice...don't you really prefer a white Christmas tree?

ALICE:

I got awfully tired of them, Mr. McGee. When I was a little girl, my father gave us kids some little tiny paint brushes and told us to paint a Christmas tree white.

MOL:

Heavenly days! It must have taken you children a long time to paint a tree with little brushes. Ho long did it take you?

ALICE:

Oh, we never did get it finished. But it kept us off the streets 'til we were eighteen years old. Well, I got to wrap some presents. See you later.

SOUND:

DOOR SLAMS

FIB:

Bright kid! How all that lovely golden hair can grow outta that solid bone, I'll never know.

MOL:

She's awfully sweet though, McGee. There isn't a mean thought in Alice's head.

FIB:

No, nor any other kind. Well, this ain't gettin' my tree sprayed.

MOL:

Where did you leave the tree, dearie?

FIB:

Out in front. I can attach the vacuum cleaner cord from the porch light. Now lemme see...I'll...

SOUND:

DOOR CHIME

MOL:

Come in!

SOUND:

DOOR OPENS, DOOR CLOSES

MOL:

Oh, hello there Doctor Gamble.

DOC:

Hello, Molly. And how are you today, Pantry Paunch?

FIB Fine, Jumbo. You out spreading a little cheer...telling your patients you're going to retire?

MOL:

Oh, he's not going to retire for years yet, are you Doctor?

DOC:

My dear, I will retire on that far distant day when I can write a personal check for four hundred dollars and not have the hired help at the Fourth National Bank burst into hysterical laughter.

FIB:

Go on, you old miser. You got that much buried under a loose brick in the fireplace right now. Trouble with you is you got more affection for a dollar than my wife has for a pound of butter...and that's the love-match of the year, Fatso.

MOL:

You have no right to say that, McGee. Doctor Gamble does more private charity work than anybody in town.

DOC:

Certainly. I'm a very noble character. When I walk down the street flowers spring into bloom, birds burst into song, and taxi cabs honk twice before they try to kill me. Well, I've got to run along now. This is my busy season, you know.

MOL:

I suppose the children keep you pretty busy around Christmas time, Doctor.

DOC:

No, its the so-called grown-ups my dear. This is the silly season, when 200-pound men start climbing 49-cent stepladders to wire dime-store angels to the top of three-dollar Christmas trees and wind up in a five hundred dollar plaster cast. Penny wise and compound fracture foolish.

FIB:

Don't you wanna stick around and watch me trim our Christmas tree, Doc? I'm paintin' it white.

DOC:

You don't have to do that, Skipwit. When I put my gift for you under it, it'll turn white. Goodnight.

SOUND:

DOOR OPENS, DOOR CLOSES

APPLAUSE AS ORCHESTRA PLAYS "PARADE OF THE WOODEN SOLDIERS"

SOUND:

HISS OF SPRAY...FALTERS...OUT

FIB:

Ah, this doggone thing!! Clogs up like a sentimental woman at a sad movie.

MOL:

What seems to be the matter, dearie?

FIB:

This paint spray! Goes along all right for a minute, then it chokes up. And when it comes loose again, it throws a blob of paint that would knock Doctor I.Q. outta the balcony.

MOL:

Pound it on the porch steps. Maybe that will loosen it up.

FIB:

Okay, I will.

SOUND:

METAL ON WOOD

MOL:

Now try it.

FIB:

Okay.

SOUND:

FAINT HISS...LOUD POPGUN EFFECT...LOUD HISS (SUSTAIN UNDER)

MOL:

Heavenly days, McGee. You almost hit me with that!

FIB:

Sorry, kiddo, I didn't know it was loaded. Well...here we go...

SOUND:

LOUD HISS...STARTS FADING...OUT

FIB:

Dad rat it..it done it again. Clogged up!

MOL:

Well hurry up and get the job finished, McGee. It's colder than a lineman's lunch out here.

FIB:

You go in the house if you wanna. I can handle this all right.

MOL:

No, I've got to stay out here and tell people who you are. Get a little more of that white paint on you and they'll think you're a badly-constructed snow man.

SOUND:

POUNDING ON STEPS...FAINT HISS..POP GUN EFFECT...LOUD HISS

FIB:

Ahhh, that does it...I'll have this tree sprayed before you can...

MOL:

Watch your aim, dearie. No, better shut it off...here comes Mrs. Carstairs.

MOL:

Hello, there, Mrs. Carstairs...won't you come in the house and have a slug of tea?

CARST:

Er..No thank you, my dear...I am just out walking my Pekinese, and must hurry along.

FIB:

What Pekinese, Carsty? I don't see him.

CARST:

Oh, it was too cold for him to come along, Mr. McGee. But, as long as one of us goes out, he is satisfied.

MOL:

It's really a sweet little dog, Millicent...from what I've seen of him.

FIB:

Personally, I wouldn't have one of them four-legged dust mops as a gift. Gimme a man-sized dog. I ever tell you about the hunting dog I had once, Carsty...named Durante?

CARST:

Er...Durante?

FIB:

Yeah, what a nose that dog had! Never forget one time we were walking' thru the woods...me and my dog...pipe over my shoulder...gun in my mouth...

MOL:

What was that again?

FIB:

Gun over my shoulder, pipe in my mouth..when all of a sudden Durante freezes! He's on point! Nose quivering! Tail out like a ramrod! One foot in the air! I raises my gun, walks slowly forward, and there, not ten feet away, was guy sittin' on a stump.

CARST:

That was quite a dog, Mr. McGee...trained to flush game wardens, was he?

FIB:

No, sir. I bawled the dog out, and then I was never so ashamed in my life...it was the smartest thing he'd ever done.

MOL:

Why?

FIB:

Well, sir, I got talkin' to the guy, and you know what? His name was Partridge, Henry W. Partridge. Wasn't that wonderful, Carsty?

CARST:

No, I don't think that is so remarkable, Mr. McGee, in light of what a police dog of mine once did.

MOL:

What was that, Millicent? After all, it's so cold out tonight the baloney won't spoil.

CARST:

Well, this dog of ours was extremely intelligent. One day I had him in the post office and I noticed he was staring at the police posters on the wall. Suddenly he dashed out the door and was gone.

FIB:

Probably went out to steal an apple off a fruit stand, Carsty.

CARST:

No. When I got home he was gripping our butler by the vest pocket and was barking into the telephone, which he had knocked off the table. When the police arrived it turned out that Jarvis was wanted by the authorities in three states.

MOL:

But why was your dog holding him by the vest pocket, Millicent?

CARST:

That was where our butler kept his fountain pen. You see, he was wanted for forgery. Well, so nice to have seen you. Good evening.

SOUND:

FOOTSTEPS FADE OUT

FIB:

Who does she think she's kiddin'? I don't believe a word of that story. I'll bet she just made that up!

MOL:

Never mind her, dearie. Get busy with that paint before it freezes solid.

FIB:

Eh? Oh, gee...it might at that...well, back to work.

SOUND:

POUNDING ON STEPS...FAINT HISS...POPGUN EFFECT...LOUD HISS

FIB:

Thar she blows!

SOUND:

HISSING...(SWISH IT AROUND, MONTE)...FADE OUT

MOL:

Stopped up again, McGee?

FIB:

Yeah...the doggone thing...and I only got about a third of this tree sprayed. Maybe if---hey! Wait a minute!

MOL:

What?

FIB:

How could Carstairs dog be gripping the butler by the vest and barkin' into the phone at the same time?

MOL:

She didn't say he was gripping the butler with his teeth, dearie. After all, a dog as smart as that could hold him down with one hind paw, dial the police station with the other, and use his front feet to take fingerprints.

FIB:

Wel-l-l...maybe. Oh, why should I worry?

SOUND:

POUNDING...SMALL HISS...LOUD POP...LOUD HISS

MOL:

You're gettin' more paint on yourself than you are on the tree, McGee.

FIB:

Well, the wind keeps changing...they oughtta make these paint sprays with a weather vane on 'em. By George, if...if...

SOUND:

HISS GOES OUT

MOL:

In the time you've taken to get this tree a dirty grey, pet, I could have white washed the Kaibab National Forest with a flit gun.

FIB:

Well, doggone it, I...

WIL:

Hello folks, what's going on here?

MOL:

Oh, hello, Mr. Wilcox.

FIB:

Hi ya junior..pull up a front step and give yourself a three-point landing.

MOL:

And if you want your Christmas tree painted white, Mr. Wilcox, trot on home and get it.

FIB:

Yeah, I won't be out here very long, Juney. Soon's I adjust the nozzle on this paint spray, I'll...

WIL:

(Horrified) Mac, do you mean to stand there like a front man for painter's colic and tell me you're actually going to ruin that pretty little tree with white paint? Ruining that refugee from the forest primeval..despoiling a magnificent evergreen that...

FIB:

Aw, skip the dramatics, Junior...we know you memorized Evangeline in high school.

MOL:

And you played the heavy in the Chatauqua Company of Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, too, didn't you, Mr. Wilcox?

WIL:

The JUVENILE lead if you please. I also had three seasons of Shakespeare.

FIB:

A likely story! When you play Shakespeare, son, that's when Othello needs a friend!

WIL:

Everyone in Omaha said I was another Barrymore. When I came out in my white tights and said -- (Declaims) "Oh what a rogue and peasant slave am I..."

FIB:

You can say that again!

MOL:

Hush McGee. I love Shakespeare! Go on, Mr. Wilcox.

S.C. JOHNSON & SON, INC.

FIBBER McGEE AND MOLLY

TUESDAY 6:

30 PM PST NBC

DECEMBER 18, 1945

MIDDLE COMMERCIAL

WIL:

(Dramatically) Is it not monstrous that this player here, seeing a lady forced to menial task -- and seeing such drudgery, would then dispense a thing called Johnson's Glo-Coat? Forsooth a goodly fluid, which spread upon the scullery linoleum, would thus eliminate the scrub. No rub! No buff! Just pour it on and in one third the time it takes for the hour glass to turn...it dries!

FIB:

If Shakespeare ain't in the public domain, this two-bit Orson Welles is gonna be sued for nine million bucks!

WIL:

Ah, yes! It dries so mirror-like, it gleams. That porridge spilled, wiped off.

Leaves not a single spot. The labor saved, the hours gained, the beauty seen. Tis Glo-Coat, beloved by Chatelaine and serving wench alike. Your nearest dealer will...

MOL:

Wait a minute, Mr. Wilcox. Is that in Hamlet?

WIL:

(Himself again) My dear girl, it's in every hamlet, every village, every town, city and metropolis. Everyplace where a housewife takes pride in the appearance of her kitchen. And if I don't get back to the office in the next ten minutes, I'll find myself back in Chatauqua. So long, kids!

SOUND:

RUNNING FOOTSTEPS OUT

FIB:

There goes the biggest ham I've seen since Blue Boy went to the state fair. He better be careful or he'll wind up on a platter with an apple in his mouth. But, this ain't gettin' my tree sprayed!

SOUND:

POUNDING ON STEPS...SLIGHT HISS...POPGUN EFFECT...LOUD HISS

FIB:

Ah, this is the best it's been yet. Look how white the tree is gettin', Molly.

MOL:

There's one question I'd like to ask you, McGee..are you sure...

FIB:

Don't bother me now, kiddo. I'm goin' too good!

SOUND:

HISS WAVING AROUND

FIB:

Hot dog! Ain't that gettin' beautiful? I finally got this spray gun workin' perfect.

MOL:

I know, but look, McGee, I've been wanting to ask you if...

FIB:

Later, tootise. I'm just about finished.

SOUND:

HISS OUT

FIB:

There we are. All done! And believe me, that's the whitest Christmas tree you'll ever see. Now won't you admit this is a mighty perfect effect, baby?

MOL:

Yes, if you like that sort of thing. (Fade) Well, I'll go in and make some hot coffee, dearie.

SOUND:

FOOTSTEPS UP ON PORCH

MOL:

(Off) McGee!

FIB:

Eh?

MOL:

Whose Christmas tree is this on the front porch?

FIB:

Oh, that's the one I bought this morning that I'm gonna paint white and...Oh my gosh! What tree did I paint?

MOL:

The one that's been growing there in the yard all these years. Bring in the vacuum cleaner when you come.

SOUND:

DOOR SLAM

FIB:

(To himself, after a moment of silence) If I ain't the dumbest guy that ever lived! A wise guy! A know-it-all! Can't tell one tree from another. I'm a saphead. I'm brainless, incompetent, ham-handed, butterfingers. And If I wasn't so stupid I'd never let me sit here and insult my, either...

TEE:

(Fade in) What's the matter mister?

FIB:

I know that voice. Is that you, Teeny?

TEE:

Sure it is, I betcha. Whatcha sittin' there with your head in your hands for, mister? Gotta headache? Want me to getcha a naspirin? Hmm? Want me to?

FIB:

No thanks, sis. Medicine won't touch the kinda headache I got. I just busted my ego in four places.

TEE:

Gee, I'm sorry mister but...(Pause) Oh boy! Who did that?

FIB:

Eh? Who did what?

TEE:

Who painted that tree white? Gee, is that ever beautiful!

FIB:

Yeah, you see, I got a little confused and...

TEE:

You're the nicest man in town, I betcha. You put your Christmas tree right out in the front yard, where everybody can share it with you.

FIB:

Well, I didn't exactly...

TEE:

Gee, all the kids in the neighborhood are gonna love your for this, mister. Boy, I can hardly wait till you get it all lighted up!

FIB:

You can't, eh?

TEE:

Hmm?

FIB:

I says YOU CAN'T, eh?

TEE:

Can't what?

FIB:

Can't wait till I get all the lights on it.

TEE:

Gee, neither can I! And you know what, mister?

FIB:

What?

TEE:

When it's growing in the ground like that it can't wobble and fall over, either. Our Christmas tree at home is always wobbly.

FIB:

Lots of people make that mistake, sis. They don't stop to think if they were a tree and got all lit up and then came into a warm room, they'd wobble a little too.

TEE:

(Giggles) Hmm?

FIB:

Skip it. So you think it looks alright out here in the front yard, eh?

TEE:

Oh, boy, I'll say. Now all the little childrun that haven't got Christmas trees can come and see yours, can't they.

FIB:

Yes. I, er...I'd kinda planned to get a lot of little bags of candy and stuff and let the kids help themselves Christmas Eve, sis. I just planned that. Think they'd like that?

TEE:

Gee, will they ever. And us kids will sing!

FIB:

Sing what?

TEE:

You know, the song we sing for you every Christmas time. "T'was the Night Before Christmas." Would ya like to hear now, mister? Hmm? Hmm?

FIB:

Yes, yes I believe I would, sis.

TEE:

Okay. (Shouting) Hey, Kenny! Johnny! Buddy! Randy! Come here. He wants to hear it.

ORCHESTRA:

OPENING CHORDS OF "NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS"

FIB:

(To himself) Wonderful bunch of kids. Goin' around the neighborhood with a thirty-piece orchestra.

MUSIC:

SONG IS PERFORMED TO THE FINISH

NO APPLAUSE

WIL:

This is NBC, the National Broadcasting Company.

CHIMES