Sunday, March 21, 2010

doomed radio show, 1948

[commercial ends for the Big Sucking Vacuum Cleaner,
WKVJ Announcer:]
'Now! Back to you, Carl!'[theme show music swells]
'Let’s welcome now please ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Irving J. Heddenmeyer, from Willow Falls, Wisconsin!'
[canned over-zealous applause]

'Well, Irving, tell the good folks a little about yourself.'
[voice shaky] 'I’m from..'
'Please step closer to the silver microphone, Mr. Heddenmeyer.'
[proudly]'I am sole proprietor of the Steel and Wire Hardware Company in Willow…'
'Fascinating. And what hardware item is most requested, Mr. Heddenmeyer?'
[over confidence seeping in] 'Ummm. That’s a tough one, Carl. I would say it’s between bananas and electrogalvanized five penny nails, Carl.'
'That’s fine just fine, Irving. You’ve chosen as your category Talking Vagabond Birds. Why is that, Irving?'
'My wife Beatrice’s mother used to have this cat and..'
'Very good, I too had a mother-in-law once, Mr Heddenmeyer, here is your Big Question. And remember, if you answer correctly, you win a Big Sucking vacuum cleaner, or a covered butter dish. Ready?'
[singing, off-balanced Bing Crosby] 'Why yes I aaammmm, Carl.'
'Your question:' [drum roll]'What kind of birds are Heckle and Jeckle?'
[bouncy music plays and clock ticks for two minutes] 'We need an answer, Irving.' [music and clock for seven minutes more] 'Irving!' [unintelligible voice, like someone talking into an empty mayonnaise jar. Jarring sounds, dissonant, unidentifiable. Theme music speeds up, obviously a recording, stops. Sound of glass smashing. Dead air. People all over the country drop their newspapers, lean across, knocking over table lamps, turning up the volume knob of their worn Crosley Radios. Two days later, Irving found bound and gagged, slumped over dead in Queens. Carl never seen or heard from again. Police discover WKVJ ransacked, cordon off from curious neck stretchers. One year later sketchy radio homicide incident manifest mysteriously swiped from J Edgar Hoover’s desk.]

14 Comments:

Blogger Lisa said...

wow, talk about taking a story and running with it. Totally did not see that one coming.

3/21/2010 11:08 PM  
Blogger Peter Goulding said...

Bitingly satirical and great fun! (What's the answer to the question, by the way?)

3/22/2010 3:20 PM  
Blogger Rob Kistner said...

Wonderfully edgy, and engaging...
...rob
Image & Verse

3/22/2010 7:07 PM  
Blogger Brian Miller said...

wow that took a wicked turn...love the twist...

3/22/2010 7:32 PM  
Blogger Catalyst said...

Ah, suspense, how great it is!

3/22/2010 7:48 PM  
Blogger joanny said...

Whoa -- a good one -- love the suspense.

Joanny

3/22/2010 8:49 PM  
Blogger steviewren said...

And the answer is "Crows!"

Very funny sketch! I found that I leaned closer to the computer to make sure I didn't miss out on what was happening myself.

3/23/2010 9:52 AM  
Blogger willow said...

I'm thinking "Radio Days" here, but better! Move over, Woody Allen!

3/23/2010 10:03 AM  
Blogger Enchanted Oak said...

Such a brilliant sketch, so creepy and curious, deserves my applause!
my magpie tale is here

3/23/2010 11:56 AM  
Anonymous Angie Muresan said...

Love, love love it! Definitely has me hooked.

3/23/2010 1:00 PM  
Blogger Vicki Lane said...

What fun! Love all the little details!

3/23/2010 1:27 PM  
Anonymous Jennifer said...

Phil it sounded like a radio play in my head. It's becoming apparent to me that you're just plain good at that. Well done.

3/23/2010 5:27 PM  
Blogger SUN DANCE HILL said...

Excellent! Wow, so much talent, loved it. Thanks for a great read!

3/24/2010 9:15 AM  
Blogger phil said...


Thanks for all the kind and encouraging comments.

~phil

3/24/2010 10:24 PM  

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