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Bert the Turtle

Federal Civil Defense Administration

Bert the Turtle  

Dec 10 1951



CAST:

NARRATOR

BERT THE TURTLE

PATSY

JIMMY

ANNOUNCER (1 line)


NOTE: This syndicated program was scheduled to be "shipped from Hollywood" on December 10, 1951, but likely aired on later dates. The transcript below is based on the recording and is not the original script.




NARRATOR: Hey, boys and girls! Listen. I want to ask you something. Did you ever see - a turtle?


MUSIC: ORGAN PLAYS A JAUNTY THEME ... THEN IN BG


NARRATOR: A turtle is a funny little animal that lives in a very, very hard shell. Just like you live in a house. The only difference is that a turtle carries his house around with him. His legs stick out the side of his house.


MUSIC: ACCENT


NARRATOR: And his head sticks out the front of his house.


MUSIC: ACCENT


NARRATOR: And when a turtle wants to protect himself, why--


MUSIC: SLIDE WHISTLE


NARRATOR: --he pulls his legs into his shell and--


MUSIC: SLIDE WHISTLE


NARRATOR: --he pulls his head into his shell. This is the way a turtle keeps from getting hurt. Sometimes, it even saves his life.


MUSIC: ORGAN PLAYS A JAUNTY THEME ... THEN BEHIND--


NARRATOR: One time, it saved Bert the Turtle from getting hurt. How did it save Bert from getting hurt? Well, I'll tell you in just a minute. But first, let me tell you about this program. 


MUSIC: OUT


NARRATOR: It has been specially transcribed for presentation by this station as a public service for the youngsters here in this area and throughout the country. It's called "Bert the Turtle" and was made by the Federal Civil Defense Administration. Bert the Turtle wants to tell you about "Duck -- and Cover." What does "Duck and Cover" mean? Well, Bert and his friends are here to tell you.


MUSIC: TAG


NARRATOR: You see, Bert was a little turtle who lived down by a small pond. 


MUSIC: PLEASANT ... BEHIND--


NARRATOR: Bert was happy, playing all day long. He would swim.


MUSIC: ACCENT ... FOR SWIMMING


NARRATOR: He would sing.


MUSIC: ACCENT ... FOR SINGING ... THEN BEHIND--


NARRATOR: He would play all day long. One day, Bert was walking through Farmer Jim's apple orchard. He was on his way to see his friends Patsy and Jimmy. Patsy and Jimmy were playing down the lane. Farmer Jim was in an apple tree. He was getting ready to shake the tree real hard so all the apples would fall down. Then Farmer Jim could gather the apples in a big basket and his wife would make some big juicy apple pies. But Bert the Turtle didn't see Farmer Jim in the tree.


MUSIC: FOR BERT'S SLOW ARRIVAL ... THEN OUT BEHIND--


BERT: Oh, I'm so tired. I think I'll rest a while. Ah, this is a nice shady tree. I think I'll stop here.


NARRATOR: You'd better not stop there, Mr. Turtle! Farmer Jim is going to shake that apple tree!


BERT: I'll just sit down here and rest a while. (YAWNS) It's so peaceful.


SOUND: SHAKING OF TREE ... THEN IN BG


NARRATOR: Bert! Bert, don't go to sleep! 


BERT: (YAWNS, SETTLES DOWN TO SLEEP BEHIND--) 


NARRATOR: The apples'll fall on your head! Bert, Bert -- wake up! (TO HIMSELF) Oh, my! Bert fell asleep. (CALLS) Bert! Bert!


BERT: (WAKES) Hm? What's that?


SOUND: TREE STOPS SHAKING


NARRATOR: Bert, watch out! You'd better - Duck--


MUSIC: SLIDE WHISTLE


NARRATOR: --and cover!


MUSIC: SLIDE WHISTLE ... BIG ACCENT, FOR FALLING APPLES


SOUND: LOUD THUMPING! OF MANY APPLES FALLING FROM TREE


MUSIC: ACCENT AND OUT


NARRATOR: Oh, I'm glad Bert went into his shell! Patsy and Jimmy were down the lane and they saw what happened when the apples fell. Here they come, running as fast as they can.


PATSY: Oh, Bert! Are you all right?


JIMMY: Come on out of your shell, Bert. The apples have all fallen.


BERT: (ECHO, INSISTENT) Uh uh. Uh uh. I'm safe inside here. Doesn't my voice sound funny?


MUSIC: FOR A SINGLE FALLING APPLE


SOUND: WHACK! OF APPLE HITTING SHELL


PATSY: (AMUSED) That apple bounced right off. It's a good thing you stayed inside your shell. Bert, you are certainly a very, very careful fellow.


BERT: (ECHO) Have the apples all fallen?


JIMMY: I think so.


BERT: (ECHO) Then I'll come out of my shell.


JIMMY: You're not hurt, are you, Bert?


BERT: (NO MORE ECHO) Oh, of course not. And do you know why?


PATSY: I do. Because you closed your eyes.


BERT: Oh, no, no. Closing your eyes doesn't help. You have to do something to protect yourself when danger comes.


JIMMY: What do you do, Bert?


BERT: Oh, just what I did when the apples fell. I - ducked--


MUSIC: SLIDE WHISTLE


BERT: --and I covered!


MUSIC: SLIDE WHISTLE 


BERT: (ECHO) You see? I'm all safe and sound inside here in my shell.


PATSY: (AMUSED) Oh, Bert, you look so funny in there! Come out and talk with us again.


JIMMY: Gee, I wish I were a turtle with a shell. Then I could duck and cover!


PATSY: That would be fun! I'd play house in mine. Let's pretend that we are turtles with shells. Come on out, Bert.


BERT: (ECHO) All right. (NO MORE ECHO) You know, you don't have to pretend you have a shell. Your clothes give you some cover, just like my shell.


PATSY: Really, Bert?


BERT: Sure. And there are other ways you can learn how to "duck and cover" in case of danger.


PATSY: Like the things our teacher told us to do in case of an atom bomb.


BERT: That's right. The atom bomb is a new danger in our lives. It can surprise us at any time.


JIMMY: My teacher said we would be much safer if we get ready for it.


BERT: Just like you get ready for other dangerous things that can happen any time. How do you get ready in case a fire breaks out, Patsy?


PATSY: I - I forget.


JIMMY: I know. We have fire alarm boxes and we use them to call the fire department in case of fire.


PATSY: And the fire department helps us when we're in danger from fire.


BERT: Everywhere we go, there are dangers of some kind, but we always try to be ready for them. We learn how to get ready for danger. (WARILY) As a matter of fact--


JIMMY: What's wrong, Bert?


BERT: Let's get out from under this apple tree. Farmer Jim might shake it again.


MUSIC: BRIEF TRANSITION


PATSY: I know what we can do. Let's play "Duck and Cover."


JIMMY: Sure. We'll pretend that an atom bomb exploded.


PATSY: And we're in school.


JIMMY: And I'll be the teacher.


PATSY: No, I'll be the teacher.


JIMMY: Oh, I'd make a better teacher.


PATSY: I know! Let Bert be the teacher. He looks more like a teacher than we do.


BERT: All right. Let's begin. (CLEARS THROAT, POMPOUSLY) Now, children--


PATSY: (GIGGLES) You sound so funny, Bert.


BERT: Now, children--


PATSY: (GIGGLES) 


BERT: Patsy, if you don't pay attention, you will have to leave the room.


PATSY: (GIGGLES) I'm sorry, teacher.


BERT: Now, children, you all know that when an atom bomb explodes, there's a great wind that blows things over and breaks them.


PATSY: Like a hurricane!


JIMMY: Don't interrupt the teacher.


BERT: But when you know what to do -- and do it fast -- you probably won't be hurt.


JIMMY: Well, how can we tell when the atom bomb is gonna explode?


PATSY: Don't interrupt the teacher.


BERT: There will probably be an air raid warning. That will give us enough time to get into our homes, our schools, or some other nearby place that is safe.


PATSY: What will it look like, Bert? (GIGGLES) I mean, teacher.


BERT: There will be a bright flash -- brighter than the sun, brighter than anything you have ever seen. Brighter than lightning! That flash always means "Duck -- and Cover" -- right where you are, just like I did when the apples fell. All right, children, let's play "Duck and Cover." (BEAT) There's the flash! Duck!


PATSY: Where should I duck, Bert?


BERT: Duck any place that will help protect you -- under the table or under your desk.


JIMMY: Hurry up, Patsy! Duck!


BERT: Now -- cover! Cover your face and your neck. Patsy, use your geography book and cover your head.


PATSY: I don't have a geography book!


JIMMY: We're pretending, silly.


PATSY: Ohhh. I forgot.


BERT: Anything you can find handy to cover yourself will help. Let's do it again. Ready? (BEAT) Duck!


MUSIC: SLIDE WHISTLE


BERT: Cover!


MUSIC: SLIDE WHISTLE 


BERT: Oh, that was fine. In fact, it was so good that you can have a recess. We'll go out into the playground and play.


PATSY: (HAPPILY) Oh, you're a good teacher; I like recesses!


BERT: (HINTS GENTLY) We might get a warning of an atom bomb outside while we're playing.


JIMMY: Oh, I know what to do then. We go to our shelter inside. 


PATSY: We go right away when our teachers tell us and we don't get excited.


JIMMY: And we don't run.


BERT: That way, you will help yourself and the other children to safety while there is still time. Do what your teacher tells you to do. Don't get excited -- and don't run.


PATSY: What if we get the warning of the atom bomb on the way home from school?


JIMMY: I know, I know. If we're close to home, we should go where our parents have fixed a safe place for us.


BERT: If you aren't close to home, go to your neighbor's house. Or ask any grown-up to help you. But somehow get into a safe place before the bomb explodes. If everything goes all right, we will hear a warning before the bomb explodes. But sometimes -- and this is very important -- there might not be a warning before the bomb explodes. The first thing we would know about a bomb exploding would be when we saw the flash. And what does that mean, Patsy?


PATSY: That means "Duck"!


JIMMY: And "Cover"!


BERT: And do it fast.


JIMMY: Let's pretend we are on our way home from school when the flash comes.


BERT: All right, let's walk home.


MUSIC: BRIEF TRANSITION ... FOR A WALK HOME ... THEN STING, FOR THE FLASH


BERT: There's the flash! Duck!


MUSIC: SLIDE WHISTLE


BERT: Cover!


MUSIC: SLIDE WHISTLE 


BERT: Where are you, Patsy?


PATSY: I'm over here in a doorway of this building.


JIMMY: That isn't a building; it's an apple tree.


PATSY: I'm pretending!


BERT: A doorway in a building is a good place to duck and cover, because it will help protect you. Where did you duck and cover, Jimmy?


JIMMY: I'm in a ditch by a little stone wall.


BERT: That's a good place, too. When you see the flash, duck and cover any place that will give you any protection -- and do it fast. If you were standing up and didn't duck and cover, the bomb might knock you down hard. So if you are away from home and are ready -- and know what to do -- you can keep from being knocked down and hurt badly.


PATSY: And when I'm at home, my daddy has a place for me to go in the cellar. He says that if we are in this shelter, we probably won't be hurt in case of an explosion.


BERT: Your daddy is right. We all need a shelter when we're in danger. A shelter will help protect us. Little Tommy Squirrel forgot that once. Tommy Squirrel is a little friend of mine who lives in a very large hollow oak tree with his parents. The oak tree was his shelter. One time, there was a great big storm--


MUSIC: ORGAN MIMICS A BLOWING WIND ... CONTINUES IN BG


BERT: It rained and rained, and the wind blew so hard that all the animals in the forest ran to their shelters. Br'er Rabbit popped into his hole, the birds snuggled in their nests, the cows and horses ran into the barn. Tommy Squirrel's mother called him and told him to scamper into the big hollow oak tree. The wind blew and blew and blew.


MUSIC: WIND EFFECT UP AND OUT


BERT: After a long time, Tommy Squirrel decided that he was tired of staying in his shelter. Do you know what he did?


PATSY: What did he do, Bert?


BERT: Well, first, he put his head out, and then he jumped out on a limb of the big tree. Just then, a great big wind came along.


MUSIC: ORGAN MIMICS A SLOW-BUILDING WIND ... CONTINUES IN BG


BERT: And before Tommy Squirrel knew what had happened-- 


MUSIC: WIND RISES TO A CLIMAX ... CONTINUES BEHIND--


BERT: --the wind blew him right out of the tree, and he fell--


MUSIC: FOR TOMMY'S FALL


BERT: -- ka-plop! --


MUSIC: FOR TOMMY HITTING THE GROUND ... THEN OUT


BERT: -- on the ground.


PATSY: Oh, dear! Was he hurt?


BERT: No, Patsy. But he could have been hurt. He could have been hurt very badly.


JIMMY: He should have done what his mother told him to do.


BERT: Yes, we should always listen to our parents and teachers, and do what they tell us to do. You see, they have thought about these things, and know how to take care of us.


JIMMY: Just like we are prepared now to duck and cover in case of a big blast.


PATSY: We'd better go home now, Jimmy. Father will be waiting for us. We're going for a ride in the car.


BERT: You're both very good students. Class dismissed!


PATSY: (LAUGHS)


JIMMY: (LAUGHS) Goodbye, Bert.


PATSY: Goodbye, Bert. We'll play again tomorrow. You can be teacher again.


MUSIC: BRIEF TRANSITION 


NARRATOR: Yes, Bert the Turtle is a good teacher. He knows that we must all get ready now to save ourselves if the atom bomb ever explodes near us. If you do not know just what to do, ask your teacher or your parents. Older people will help you, as they always do. But if there are no grown-ups around when the bomb explodes, remember -- do what Bert does. (BEAT) Duck! And cover! (BEAT) Say, where is Bert? Oh, there he is. Under that apple tree again.


BERT: Oh, I'm so tired. I think I'll rest a while. (YAWNS) I'll just sit down here and rest a while. 


SOUND: SHAKING OF TREE ... THEN IN BG


NARRATOR: Bert! Bert, the apples! 


BERT: (YAWNS) 


NARRATOR: Don't go to sleep! 


SOUND: TREE STOPS SHAKING


NARRATOR: Bert! Duck!


MUSIC: SLIDE WHISTLE 


NARRATOR: Cover!


MUSIC: SLIDE WHISTLE ... ACCENT, FOR FALLING APPLES


SOUND: LOUD THUMPING! OF MANY APPLES FALLING FROM TREE


MUSIC: ACCENT AND OUT


NARRATOR: I guess we don't have to worry about Bert. He knows how to "Duck -- and Cover." He is prepared for danger. Just like us. (GENTLY) Are you all right, Bert?


BERT: (ECHO) Sure! I'm all right in my shell.


MUSIC: FOR A SINGLE FALLING APPLE


SOUND: WHACK! OF APPLE HITTING SHELL


BERT: (ECHO) You see? That apple didn't bother me, because I ducked -- and covered.


MUSIC: TAG


NARRATOR: Say, Bert, that was a wonderful show. How about coming out of your shell and saying hello to all the boys and girls listening to our program?


BERT: (NO MORE ECHO) Hello, boys and girls. I hope you all liked the show. "Duck and Cover" is a very important thing to remember, and it can be fun.


NARRATOR: What do you mean, Bert?


BERT: All the boys and girls listening can play the game just like Patsy and Jimmy. Just remember that we have to do something to protect ourselves when danger comes.


NARRATOR: Like a flash. That means duck! And cover!


BERT: That's right. Duck behind any place that will protect you -- doorways, ditches, walls, or any solid object.


NARRATOR: And cover yourself with anything you can find.


BERT: And remember, children, in case of an emergency of any kind, do what your teacher or parents tell you to do. Don't get excited, and don't run. Well, I guess I'll go down to the little pond and have a swim. Goodbye, boys and girls! And remember: duck -- and cover!


MUSIC: FOR BERT'S SLOW DEPARTURE


NARRATOR: Thank you, Bert. We'll see you again. I hope all the children will remember the things you told them -- especially: duck -- and cover


MUSIC: CLOSING THEME ... THEN IN BG


ANNOUNCER: Bert the Turtle, who stars in the official civil defense movie "Duck and Cover," is featured by permission of the copyright owners, Archer Productions, Incorporated. The program you've just heard was transcribed by the Federal Civil Defense Administration as a public service of this station. Remember, civil defense is everybody's business. It's your business.


MUSIC: UP, FOR FINISH ... AND OUT

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