The Venetian Blind Man

Title The Venetian Blind Man
Description Episode 94
Message Text “Quiet, Please!”

Wyllis Cooper

NO. 27 (91) – “THE VENETIAN BLIND MAN”

WJZ-ABC Sunday April 3, 1949 – 5:30 – 6:00 PM EST

CHAPPELL: Quiet, please.

(SEVEN SECONDS SILENCE)

CHAPPELL: Quiet, please.

(MUSIC … THEME … FADE FOR)

ANNCR: The American Broadcasting Company presents “Quiet, Please!” … which is written and directed by Wyllis Cooper, and which features Ernest Chappell.
“Quiet, Please!” for today is called “The Venetian Blind Man”.

(MUSIC … THEME … END)

AFTERNOON: Now, I very seldom make mistakes. In fact, I never made a mistake in my life until a few weeks ago when I made rather an idiot of myself before a large radio audience by ding. It embarrassed me no end, as Mr. Ivor Lambe of London, England sometimes says, when I came to life again. Came to life, to realize that I was not the victim of an aortal aneurysm as I thought, and that I had not fallen a victim to what Miss Sissie Williams of New York sometimes calls a tummyache. By the way, it is Miss Williams’ birthday today.
You see, I had established something of a reputation as The Man Who Knows Everything, and an episode of this sort does not do my reputation any good. So, alas. Alas, not to mention alackaday.
By the way, just to refresh your memory, allow me to reintroduce myself. The name is Charles W. Afternoon, formerly of Tarzana, California – My business? Why I’m the Man Who Knows Everything. Isn’t that enough?
What do I know?
Why, for example, it rained on Easter in Chicago in 1929. Lt. Col. Dewey Seipt, of Salinas, California, was once a trumpeter in the cavalry. Mrs. John M. Goar, wife of the well-known realtor of Pekin, Illinois, has a broken arm. Her maiden name, by the way, was Ruth Epkens. A pair of oversize rubbers n a closet in Mr. Wyllis Cooper's office were left there by the Reverend Julien Mattern, of Perth Amboy, New Jersey. There is a small hole in your left sock. Mr. John P. Marquand, the eminent novelist, is under the impression that the Dusenberg automobile is a foreign car, while it was always manufactured in Indianapolis, Indiana. And Miss Cecile Tragacanth, my beautiful secretary, is listening at the keyhole of my office door.

(THE DOOR IS OPENED)

TRAGACANTH: I just wanted to know --

AFTERNOON: -- What I was going to say about you, Miss Tragacanth. You have already heard. Yes, you may go out and get a cup of coffee and a piece of pineapple upside-down cake. Just a moment, Miss Tragacanth, you lost your purse in Car 6114 of the Fourth Avenue Local subway train coming to work this morning. Here is a dollar, which you will forget to return to me.

TRAGACANTH: Oh, I'll give it back, Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: Unfortunately, that is not true. You will forget it until Flag Day, which is June 14th. At that time you will be in Vancouver, British Columbia, discussin' employment with Major Dick Diespecker of Station CJOR. After that you will forget it permanently.

TRAGACANTH: I'm sorry, Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: Now, if you will admit the gentleman who is waiting to see me --

TRAGACANTH: There isn't --

AFTERNOON: Oh, yes, there is, Miss Tragacanth. His name is Micaele Palmasoni, although for reasons of his own, which I shall not go into, he prefers to call himself Mike Pamson.

TRAGACANTH: Yes, sir. Come in, Mr. Pamson.

PAMSON: Grzaie, signorina. Signor Afternoon, io voglio -

AFTERNOON: I know what you want, Signor Palmasoni.

PAMSON: Pamson.

AFTERNOON: Help Mr. Pamson to a chair, Miss Tragacanth.

PAMSON: Thank you horribly.

TRAGACANTH: De nada, Senor.

AFTERNOON: That's Spanish, Miss Tragacanth.

TRAGACANTH: Oh?

AFTERNOON: Mr. Pamson is Italian.

TRAGACANTH: Really? Che va piano, va sano, mr. Pamson.

PAMSON: Whe va sano, va lontano, signorina. Non e vero?

AFTERNOON: Miss Tragacanth doesn't know what that means, Mr. Pamson. It was the motto of her high-school class, but she hasn't the faintest idea what it means.

TRAGACANTH: Did I swear?

AFTERNOON: You may be excused, Miss Tragacanth. And take an aspirin for your headache.

TRAGACANTH: I forgot my headache.

AFTERNOON: I didn't.

TRAGACANTH: Than you, Mr. Afternoon.

PAMSON: Mr. Afternoon, are we alone?

AFTERNOON: Except for the radio audience, Mr. Pamson.

PAMSON: I had forgotten them.

AFTERNOON: You must never forget them, Mr. Pamson.

PAMSON: I have a matter of great importance to consult you about.

AFTERNOON: I know what it is, Mr. Pamson. You are --

PAMSON: Oh, no! No no no no no no! Please!

AFTERNOON: I know who you are, Mr. Pamson.

PAMSON: Would you ask the gentleman at the organ to play a little louder, Mr. Afternoon, so that we will not be overheard?

AFTERNOON: If you wish. Mr. Buhrmann, will you play a trifle louder, please?

(MUSIC: THE ORGAN PLAYS LOUDER. . . .)

(FOR A FEW MOMENTS, AFTERNOON AND PAMSON ARE HEARD FAINTLY BEHIND THE ORGAN MUSIC. THEN AFTERNOON CALLS OUT)

AFTERNOON: Thank you, Mr. Buhrmann.

(MUSIC: THE ORGAN STOPS)

PAMSON: (FINISHING A SENTENCE) -- I am in danger of my life!

(MUSIC: GOES OH MY. . .)

PAMSON: You stopped too soon, Mr. Buhrmann.

(MUSIC: BEGINS AGAIN AND STOPS, AFTER A MOMENT THE SAME WAY. . .)

PAMSON: --I am in danger of m life.

AFTERNOON: Never mind, Bert. (AS THE MUSIC STARTS TENTATIVELY THEN STOPS AGAIN) By this time we all know that Mr. Pamson is in danger of his life. Or rather, that he thinks he is.

PAMSON: I am!

AFTERNOON: Take it easy, Mr. Pamson. Orville is still in bed.

PAMSON: I hope he falls out and breaks his neck!

AFTERNOON: You hate Orville.

PAMSON: I have reason to hate Orville.

AFTERNOON: So you say.

PAMSON: So I mean!

AFTERNOON: Mm-hm. Did he give you that knife scar in you intercoastal region?

PAMSON: Where?

AFTERNOON: Ribs. Knife-scar.

PAMSON: How you know I got a knife-scar on my ribs, Mr. Afternoon?

AFTERNOON: (GENTLY) Why, I know everything, Mr. Pamson.

PAMSON: Cospetto! Yes, he gave me that.

AFTERNOON: I even know who you are, Mr. Pamson.

PAMSON: (AFTER A PAUSE) Whisper it.

AFTERNOON: No. You are a Venetian, Mr. Pamson.

PAMSON: (RELUCTANTLY) I am from Venice.

AFTERNOON: You do not see very well.

PAMSON: I am blind, Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: Then you - are the Venetian blind man.

(MUSIC: AN AWFUL ACCENT. . .)

PAMSON: Too late, Mr. Buhrmann. Everybody heard that.

AFTERNOON: And I am afraid I can't help you, Mr. Pamson.

PAMSON: You must help me, Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: It can't be done. Goodday, sir.

PAMSON: You're not going to send me out to be murdered?

AFTERNOON: I am not sending you anywhere, Mr. Pamson.

PAMSON: But I will be murdered. Orville will murder me.

AFTERNOON: It is useless to try to entrap me into a statement, Mr. Pamson.

PAMSON: I will pay you large sums of money.

AFTERNOON: I already have large sums of money.

PAMSON: You know everything, Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: Yes. I know everything.

PAMSON: You know whether I'm going to be murdered or not.

AFTERNOON: Yes, I do.

PAMSON: Am I?

AFTERNOON: I won't tell you.

PAMSON: You don't know.

AFTERNOON: Oh yes, I do.

PAMSON: No, you don't

AFTERNOON: Mr. Pamson, I will give you an example of what I know.

PAMSON: All right, go on.

AFTERNOON: Your great-grandfather was Dante Alighieri Ravenscroft.

PAMSON: Yes. How do you know?

AFTERNOON: You will admit I am right, Mr. Pamson.

PAMSON: Yes, but what difference does it --

AFTERNOON: It makes a great deal of difference. Please go away.

PAMSON: What if I don't choose to go away, Mr. Afternoon?

AFTERNOON: I will take steps.

PAMSON: (SNEERS) You will call the police.

AFTERNOON: No.

PAMSON: What will you do, then?

AFTERNOON: I have my own way of ending this scene.

PAMSON: What way?

AFTERNOON: Don't you ever listen to the radio?

PAMSON: Certainly, but --

AFTERNOON: Well, then --

PAMSON: No - no - don't do that to me!

AFTERNOON: Will you go?

PAMSON: (FRIGHTENED) No --

AFTERNOON: Very well, then, I have no alternative. End the scene, Mr. Buhrmann.

(MUSIC: TO END THE SCENE . . . .)

TRAGACANTH: My, that was clever, Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: I thought so.

TRAGACANTH: Was he a scalawag, Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: Yes.

TRAGACANTH: I just knew he was.

AFTERNOON: I'll do the knowing around here, Miss Tragacanth.

TRAGACANTH: Yes, Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: Do you know something, Miss Tragacanth?

TRAGACANTH: No, Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: I think you're a very charming young woman, Miss Tragacanth.

TRAGACANTH: How nice, Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: What would you do, Miss Tragacanth, if I kissed you? What am I saying? I know what you'll do. Lean over, Miss Tragacanth. (HE KISSES HER) Thank you.

TRAGACANTH: You're welcome, Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: I know what you're going to do.

TRAGACANTH: What?

AFTERNOON: Ask me to kiss you again.

TRAGACANTH: Please do Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: Very, very nice.

TRAGACANTH: Now I know what you're going to do, Mr. Afternoon.

AFTERNOON: Eh?

TRAGACANTH: You're going to ask ME to kiss YOU again.

AFTERNOON: Why, so I am. If you please, Miss T.

TRAGACANTH: With pleasure, Mr. A.

(HE KISSES HER, AND SHE SIMPERS, AND HE STARTS WITH ANNOYANCE)

AFTERNOON: Oh, darn it!

TRAGACANTH: Why, what's the matter, Mr. Afternoon?

AFTERNOON: The telephone's going to ring.

(WHICH IT DOES, AFTER A SECOND)

TRAGACANTH: Who is it?

AFTERNOON: The Venetian Blind Man.

TRAGACANTH: Again!

(HE LIFTS THE RECEIVER)

AFTERNOON: Hello; Charles W. Afternoon speaking. Yes. Mr. Volcano.

TRAGACANTH: I thought his name was Pamson.

AFTERNOON: I know, Mr. Volcano. I know Mr. Volcano. You don't have to tell me that, Mr. Volcano, I know it. Yes, Good-by.

(HE HANGS UP THE RECEIVER)

TRAGACANTH: Mr. Afternoon, I thought his name was Pamson.

AFTERNOON: Volcano. The phone's going to ring again.

TRAGACANTH: Is it?

(THE PHONE RINGS, AND HE LIFTS THE RECEIVER)

AFTERNOON: Hello, Bud. How are - no, no, I'm glad you're feeling fine. Yes, of course I read your article in the Atlantic Monthly. I enjoyed it very much, Bud.

(MUSIC: AN ACCENT. . . .)
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Ownership Astro1
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Submission Date Dec 22, 2003