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Roadside

The Columbia Workshop

Roadside

Mar 02 1941



CAST:

ANNOUNCER

SINGER

TEXAS, a big, hulky, curly-headed, han'some ring-tailed tooter

HANNIE, a strappin' girl that wants to roam

PAP, Hannie's father

BUZZEY, Hannie's ex, a dried-up farmer

RED IKE, a little off'n the head

BLACK IKE, Red's twin cousin, likewise

MARSHAL, a big man, with a hat and a pistol

JUDGE

NEB, a little wart of a jailer

MRS. FOSTER




ANNOUNCER: Ladies and gentlemen, the Columbia Workshop, radio's oldest and most varied experimental program, presents "Roadside" by Lynn Riggs. Tonight's Workshop broadcast, to be directed by Earle McGill, revives an early play by Lynn Riggs who is remembered for his Theatre Guild success, "Green Grow the Lilacs," and who has also caught the rich flavor and gusto of regional America in other plays, notably "Russet Mantle," "A Lantern to See By," and "Sump'n Like Wings."


MUSIC: SOLO GUITAR ... THEN ACCOMPANIES SINGER IN "THE TEXIAN BOYS"


SINGER: 

Come all you Louisiana girls, come listen to my noise. 

If you ever go out West, don't marry those Texan boys; 

For if you do, your fortune will be 

Cold Johnny corn and venison, that's all you'll see-- 

That's all you will see. (FADES OUT)


MUSIC: GUITAR CONTINUES BEHIND ANNOUNCER--


ANNOUNCER: "Roadside" is laid in the year Nineteen Hundred Five. It's near sundown of a day in June, and the air is summery and sweet. By the side of a road, through the woods in Indian Territory, there nestles a covered wagon, Pap Rader's roadside home. Outside the wagon are some battered camp chairs, a large three-legged pot with a fire under it. Buzzey Hale, a little, bluish, dried-up farmer is sitting sadly by the fire as Pap Rader, a good-natured old man, comes from around the wagon. (FADES OUT)


PAP: (DISAPPROVING) Set there a-pinin'. If you don't look like a ole turkey buzzard! No wonder Hannie calls you Buzzey.


BUZZEY: Buzzey is short fer beautiful.


PAP: Beautiful! Heh! If you're beautiful, I'm a bob-tailed witch! I don't see whut you want of follerin' us around, Mr. Turkey Buzzard. There ain't nothin' dead around here fer you to chaw on.


BUZZEY: I'm a-gonna be around, though.


PAP: Yeeeeeah. You'll be.


BUZZEY: If it hadn't a-been fer you, Hannie wouldn't a-left me in the first place. You done it with yer ole covered wagon. Tellin' her about the roads again. An' you brung her up; I'll say you brung her up -- with her ways! Wonder why I married her a-tall, an' her with an ole man like you couldn't read a sign on a hitch post! Ridin' on the road, that's all you think about!


PAP: Whut you think about is plowin'. The road's better. I'm a-tellin' you, Hannie'd orter divorced you like she did. She's a strappin' girl that wants to roam -- like me -- an' see life, instead of a milk churn!


BUZZEY: I'll git her back, you'll see.


PAP: If you foller us too long, yer crops'll all be ruint!


BUZZEY: It's cut, Pap. I got money to h'ar me h'ard hands. An' when I h'ar men, I h'ar men. Red Ike an' Black Ike -- that's the kinda men I h'ar.


HANNIE: (OFF) Pap?!


PAP: Yeah? Whut is it?


HANNIE: (OFF) Pap, come 'ere!


PAP: Come 'ere, yerself, Hannie. I'm busy.


HANNIE: (OFF) Gol darn it, Pap! You heared me. Come a-runnin'. Cain't you hear nuthin'?


PAP: Well, whut is it? Come out here and tell it.


HANNIE: (OFF) I ain't got so many clothes on. And I don't expect to come out and give that ole buzzard no free show. Case you'd like to know it, that hound of yours is eatin' up yer hog shoulders.


PAP: (STARTLED EXCLAMATION) Well, why in blazes didden you say so!


HANNIE: (OFF) I said so!


PAP: (YELLS AT DOG) Git out o' there!


SOUND: DOG BARKS AND RUNS OFF YELPING


PAP: (DISGUSTED, TO HIMSELF) I saved that dog from drownin', and this is the way he does me. A good hog shoulder plumb ruint! The yeller cur. (UP, TO BUZZEY) Now, look here, Buzzey -- you let Hannie alone. She ain't gonna have no truck with you as long as I'm around, d'you hear me?


BUZZEY: I hear you.


PAP: You'd better heed me. (MOVING OFF) Well, I'm goin' down along the crick bank and see whut I c'n see.


SOUND: PAUSE, FOR PAP'S DEPARTURE AND HANNIE'S ARRIVAL


BUZZEY: Hey, Hannie?


HANNIE: (DEFINITE) I don't know you from Adam.


BUZZEY: Hannie, cain't you come back to me?


HANNIE: Not to you, nor to no one like you. I want me a man, not a broomstick. Besides, I had enough of bein' a farmer's wife. 


BUZZEY: You wouldn't a-got no divorce from me if someone hadn't a-fixed it up fer me to be found the way I was.


HANNIE: Oh, woulden I? Who fixed it, then? 


BUZZEY: I ain't sayin'.


HANNIE: Well, whoever fixed it, you fixed yerself with me! 


BUZZEY: (APOLOGETIC) Hannie, it won't never happen again. 


HANNIE: It can happen till you're blue in the face, fer all I keer. Whut I cain't figger out is how I ever come to marry you in the first place.


BUZZEY: It was love, that's whut it was. 


HANNIE: Love? Lemme look at you. 


BUZZEY: Well, look at me, and you'll see.


HANNIE: Is that a new suit you got on? 


BUZZEY: Brand spankin'!


HANNIE: It don't seem to improve you none. 


BUZZEY: You coulda done worse. I had me plenty of land and a way to take keer of you, didn't I?


HANNIE: Yeah. But I could take keer of myself the day I was borned. And if ever I marry again, it'll have to be to a world-slingin', star-traipsin' son of a gun that's more my match than you air. And when I run into sich a feller, I miss my guess if cracks of lightnin' don't burn up the country fer fourteen miles around. So look out you don't get scorched. 


RED AND BLACK: (APPROACH FROM DISTANCE, SINGING BOISTEROUSLY AND INDECIPHERABLY, IN BG)


BUZZEY: Hannie, come on back to me. The calves an' the roan -- they won't have nuthin' to do with me. They're a-missin' you, I reckon. 


HANNIE: (MOVING OFF) I never heard of no dumb animals dyin' of a broken heart. Quit a-botherin' me now.

 

BUZZEY: Aw, Hannie! 


RED AND BLACK: (STOP SINGING) 


BUZZEY: (ANNOYED) Red Ike and Black Ike! Whut in blazes you doin' here, anyhow? Whut d'you mean flyin' off leavin' my farm to run itself?


RED: This here yore campin' outfit?


BUZZEY: Campin'?


BLACK: You a campin' man now, Mr. Hale?


RED: You got some soup?


BUZZEY: Soup?


BLACK: We're powerful hongry. Ain't et in a day.


RED: Been singin' to keep up our sperrits!


BUZZEY: Singin'?


BLACK: Et some strawberries, though.


BUZZEY: I don't keer if you starve! Whut'd you leave my farm fer? I thought I could trust it to you.


RED: We was a-lookin' fer someone else.


BUZZEY: You git back quick's you c'n hotfoot it, both of you. Git, I tell ya!


RED: We're gonna stay.


BLACK: We're gonna set here and stay, ain't we, Red?


BUZZEY: You're f'ard, both of you!


RED: Suits me. Cain't make me mad.


BLACK: (IRRELEVANTLY) Chew Star Navy, an' spit ham gravy!


BUZZEY: Now, look here, if I give you ten dollars apiece--


RED: Woulden take it!


BUZZEY: How much you tryin' to bleed outa me?


RED: Not any.


BUZZEY: Whut'd you come fer, anyway?


BLACK: Oh, jest seen this purty road and started off a-follerin' it.


BUZZEY: (UNCONVINCED) You got somethin' up yer sleeve.


HANNIE: (APPROACHES, FRIENDLY) Howdy! Red Ike an' Black Ike! I thought I heard yer voices!


RED: Thought we'd find you!


BLACK: Knowed we'd find you!


RED: If we looked long enough!


BLACK: In the right place!


RED: On the right road!


HANNIE: If I ain't missed you! Tell me things!


BLACK: Whut about?


HANNIE: Oh, anything!


BLACK: Wanta hear about Texas?


HANNIE: Whut about Texas?


BLACK: Well, we seen sich a sight, didden we, Red?


RED: Down at the switch as we come through.


BLACK: Yeah, a man th'owed in the jail fer gettin' drunk!


RED: He got drunk and crazy and wild. And he yelled. My, how he yelled!


BLACK: How'd it go?


RED: (RAPIDLY, RHYTHMICALLY)

Wild and reckless,

Borned in Texas,

Suckled by a bear,

Steel backbone,

Tail screwed on,

Twelve feet long, 

Dare any son of a gun to step on it!


HANNIE: (IMPRESSED) Purty good!


BUZZEY: (DISGUSTED) Purty good!


RED: Then the marshal got a-holt of him, an' the jedge said; "Twelve days in jail, one fer every foot of yer long tail." So they went to throw him in the jail, and he kicked the jedge offen the bench and made just plumb hash outa the courtroom, 'fore they got him in the calaboose.


HANNIE: (IMPRESSED) Good!


BUZZEY: (DISGUSTED) Good! Pah!


RED: My, a big, hulky, curly-headed, han'some ring-tailed tooter, wuzn't he, Black?


HANNIE: An' where is he?


RED: Down the road a piece.


HANNIE: Outa jail?


BLACK: Shore!


PAP: (APPROACHES, PLEASED) Red Ike and Black Ike! (LAUGHS) I knowed it! I knowed it! Whut'd I tell you about h'ard hands, Buzzey?! (LAUGHS)


HANNIE: (WITH GREAT ENTHUSIASM) Hey! Hey, Pap! There's a man comin' along the road! Wild and reckless, borned in Texas! A tail twelve feet long! He fit his way into jail and outa jail, and he's comin' along that road there, and heavens and earth, whut're you gonna do?


TEXAS: (OFF) Wild and reckless, borned in Texas! Suckled by a bear-- (ET CETERA, BEHIND--)


HANNIE: (EXCITED) Hear that?! It's him! I'm gonna run in the wagon, quick!


PAP: Whut're you goin' in the wagon fer, Hannie?


HANNIE: I'm gonna put flour on my face and purty myself up, that's whut fer!


SOUND: HANNIE'S STEPS UP INTO WAGON


BUZZEY: Now, whut on earth's come over her?


PAP: Danged if I know. Whut's this about a man?


TEXAS: (CLOSER) Howdy!


PAP: Huh? Oh. Howdy yerself, mister.


TEXAS: Thought you might be the marshal. Shore don't want to see him again! Wouldn't be safe -- fer him! (SEES RED AND BLACK) Hello, if here ain't the two little twins I seen down the road a piece--


RED: We ain't twins!


BLACK: We're cousins!


TEXAS: You look like twins to me. This here yer pap?


RED: You mean Pap Rader? He ain't our pap, though.


BLACK: Not as we know of.


TEXAS: Howd' do, Mr. Rader?


PAP: (APPRECIATIVELY) We been hearin' about you, Mr. Texas. Hear you beat up the jedge an' broke outa jail and raised high water complete, down here in Verdigree.


TEXAS: (CHUCKLES MODESTLY) Oh, well, it wasn't so much.


PAP: This here is Mr. Hale. 


TEXAS: Well, howd' do, Mr. Hale?


BUZZEY: (SULLEN) Howdy. 


TEXAS: Say, you look porely.


RED: Guessed it right, that time, Mr. Texas! His wife just divorced him!


TEXAS: (SORRY TO HEAR THAT) Oh. 


BUZZEY: Shet up yer mouth, Red Ike! I'll knock you down! (MOVING OFF, MUTTERING) Folks a-buttin' into business that don't concern 'em.


TEXAS: He kinda takes it to heart, don't he?


PAP: 'Tain't no joke to lose a womern. 


TEXAS: She musta been blind if'n she married a man like that!


RED AND BLACK: (LAUGH UPROARIOUSLY, THEN BEHIND--)


PAP: Go an' git some wood, 'fore I smack one of ya. Both of ya! Git a move on!


RED AND BLACK: (MOVING OFF, CHUCKLING)


PAP: (AMUSED, TO TEXAS) Have to excuse them little shavers. You never know whut they're gonna do next. Little off'n the head.


HANNIE: (OFF, MERRILY) Who's that with ya, Pap? Cain't make out nuthin' but a smudge an' a pair o' laigs.


TEXAS: I reckon they're mine, lady.


HANNIE: (APPROACHES, IMPRESSED WITH TEXAS) Well, I - I've seen worse.


SOUND: DURING ABOVE, HANNIE'S STEPS DOWN FROM WAGON


PAP: Make you acquainted to my daughter, Hannie, Mr. Texas.


TEXAS: (IMPRESSED WITH HANNIE) Howd' do?


HANNIE: (PLAYFUL) Mr. Texas? Thought that was a state.


TEXAS: Oh, Texas is named after me. And I'm kinda a state myself, in a way o' talkin'.


HANNIE: (LIGHT AND DRY) State of smart Alec, I'd call it.


TEXAS: (AMUSED) Hey, you've got a kind of a jokin' daughter, ain't you, Mr. Rader?


PAP: Blamed if I know when she is or when she hain't!


HANNIE: (GOOD-NATURED) When you've saw as many funny-lookin' sights as I have, you'll turn to jokin', too, Mr. Texas.


TEXAS: (CLEARLY ATTRACTED) I think I'd sorta like you, 'f I could jist make out whut you was up to.


HANNIE: (THE SAME) Ain't that nice of you, though. Whur was you bound fer, Mr. Texas?


TEXAS: Well, I had aimed to make it up to Claremore 'fore it got night.


HANNIE: Is that so? Well, I guess the law down at Verdigree kinda helt you up a bit.


TEXAS: Yeah, I guess it did.


HANNIE: Is there anything a-hinderin' you now?


TEXAS: If you was as smart with yer eyes as you air with yer tongue, you'd see it's comin' night on me.


HANNIE: (AMUSED) If you was smart, you'd ast 'f you could stay here all night -- an' sleep by the f'ar, so the varmints won't bother ya.


TEXAS: I might do that.


HANNIE: How about tellin' me about yerself?


PAP: (KNOWS HE'S NOT WANTED, MOVING OFF) I guess I'll jest mosey along and warter the

horses, er, while I'm able.


TEXAS: (TO HANNIE) You know, I don't think an ordinary man'd be safe around you. You're too smart. I was borned in Texas, an' I ain't got any present job, though I c'n do most anything I want to -- if I want to -- an' I'm on my way some'eres now, I don't know where. 


HANNIE: (IRRELEVANTLY) Look at them lightning bugs!


TEXAS: (SLIGHTLY FRUSTRATED) I was tellin' you about myself!


HANNIE: Aw, I c'n listen and look at the same time.


TEXAS: Well, look at me instead of the lightnin' bugs.


HANNIE: I couldn't help myself, if you had a light on yore tail, like a lightnin' bug. (CHUCKLES, GENUINELY) Oh, I wanta hear about you, though, honest I do.


TEXAS: Onct I run a ranch in Texas as big as the state Alabama. I ain't never been licked by mortal man. 


HANNIE: I take you serious, but I don't swaller that kinda fish bait. Not right at first. I got to git used to it.


TEXAS: Oh, you're gonna git used to it. Whut I see I see! And I see a lot about me an' you that's been writ down some'eres for a long time. (BEAT) I want to tell you sump'n I never told nobody. I wasn't borned.


HANNIE: What?!


TEXAS: I wasn't borned in the ordinary way. (A SPELLBINDING TALL TALE) Way out on the Texas prairie set a small cabin made outa oak. And in that cabin set a man and a womern with a growed gal as purty as purty could be! Name was Liza. Mornin' come, she'd hop on her pony to ride the range, her old pap and mammy a-runnin' arter her to stop her. "Come back, Liza," they'd say, "the plain is full of coyotes!" And seein' she didn't answer, they'd say, "Well, don't go fur, then, and come back soon!" And away she'd go! Greased lightnin'! Dynamite on wings! Now, when she was seven and a half miles away, she'd stop an' look around. Now a funny thing! She'd rid into a valley whur a river used to flow in the year one. Tall grasses stood up like trees. A queer kind of roarin', like lions, came from somewheres among the tall grasses. She'd git off her horse and go into that valley on foot. She'd stay all day. Who'd she see there? Who'd she meet there? Somebody! A secret man that roared when he talked and shook the ground like an earthquake rumblin'. Finally, one night, Liza lay in her pappy's cabin, when all of a sudden there was a crash and a bang and a clatter. Thunder and hail, f'ar and brimstone! The cabin whur Liza lay cracked itself wide open from stem to stern, beam end to beam end, hind end to gullet! And when the smoke cleared away, out I stepped, full size, dressed to kill, in a ten-gallon hat, boots, and chaps, and a gun in ary hand, and both guns a-poppin'! And that's how I got started!


HANNIE: (MOMENTARILY CARRIED AWAY) I believe to my soul you're tellin' the truth!


TEXAS: 'Course I'm tellin' the truth!


HANNIE: (SKEPTICAL) The truth and whut else?


TEXAS: It's gospel -- every word I speak!


HANNIE: Can you look over a tree?


TEXAS: Whut's that got to do with it? I'm six foot tall.


HANNIE: That's quite a size. Whur air you goin' after today, Mr. Texas?


TEXAS: I ain't said -- yet. All depends.


HANNIE: On whut?


TEXAS: Oh, on which a-way the wind blows.


HANNIE: Well, it 'pears to me the wind has died down complete.


TEXAS: I been a-noticin' that. Trees ain't hardly a-movin'. I'd shore hate to exert myself more'n a tree.


SOUND: SNEAK IN NOCTURNAL BACKGROUND (QUIET CRICKETS, ET CETERA)


HANNIE: Well, you c'n sleep here by the f'ar 'th the rest of 'em, less'n you're feared they'll bite! I'm goin' to bed. Good night, Mr. Texas.


TEXAS: Good night.


HANNIE: (MERRILY) Tell Buzzey good night fer me, if you see him. An' tell him I said he could sleep right bang up close to the hot f'ar -- and imagine!


SOUND: HANNIE'S STEPS UP INTO WAGON AS SHE EXITS ... CRICKETS GROW A LITTLE LOUDER


TEXAS: (LAUGHS, THEN TO HIMSELF) Funny, ain't it, the way you take to some people? And some people you cain't set down 'in eighty foot of. (YAWNS) I'm as easy in my mind as a newborn bronc. And sich a deep, dark hole of sleepin' as I'm goin' into will be wrote down in books! (YAWNS) I'll bet I don't wake up till the sun does. And I'll bet I dream.


SOUND: NOCTURNAL BACKGROUND ... UP, TO FILL A PAUSE ... A NIGHT OWL HOOTS GENTLY


MUSIC: BRIDGE ... GENTLE ACOUSTIC GUITAR


SOUND: ROOSTER CROWS


PAP: Whur you goin', Buzzey?


BUZZEY: Sh! Sh!


PAP: Whut're you up to?


BUZZEY: Quit makin' a noise! You don't wanta lose Hannie, do you?


PAP: I ain't a-losin' her.


BUZZEY: Not yit! But it's a-comin'!


PAP: Whut was you aimin' to do? 


BUZZEY: I'm a-goin' down here to Verdigree, rouse up the marshal, and tell him where Texas is at. The first thing you know this here Texas'll be runnin' off with Hannie, nen both of us'll be outa luck! 


PAP: Well, don't talk so much, you'll wake him up. Why didn't you go sooner?


BUZZEY: I meant to, but I overslept.


PAP: Overslept! Git on there, now, an' do whut you's a-gonna do. 


BUZZEY: I'm a-gittin'!


TEXAS: (FRIENDLY) Oh, is that you, Mr. Hale?


BUZZEY: (STARTLED, NERVOUS) Huh? Ye-yeah, it's me.


TEXAS: You're goin' some'eres?


BUZZEY: (LYING BADLY) Jist goin' - goin' down along the crick bank.


TEXAS: (STERN) Hey, come 'ere, you sneakin' pike. Don't you never try a trick like that on me again, or I'll make stew outa you!


BUZZEY: (SCARED) W-whut kind of a trick, Mr. Texas?


TEXAS: I heard ya all right, both of ya. And you, Pap Rader, a-listenin' to a suck-egg mule like this here Buzzey. I'd thought you had more sense!


PAP: (LEVELS WITH HIM) Well, blame me, I - I don't want you a-runnin' away with my Hannie! She's better off with me than she'd be with you.


TEXAS: Oh, is that so? Well, I'm gonna learn you a lesson you won't fergit. I hadn't meant to take Hannie away with me a-tall. But I'll put her under one arm and claw my way to clear down in the Verdigree bottom some'eres outa sight. She'll jump at the chanct! She'd kick you both in the pants if I told her to and lay down and let me walk on her.


BUZZEY: You quit a-talkin'--!


TEXAS: And after I git her well trained to ride proper, I'm a-gonna leave her some'eres to git along the best way she can! Learn you two a lesson!


SOUND: HANNIE'S BRISK STEPS DOWN FROM WAGON


HANNIE: (SHARPLY) How's that, Mr. Texas?


TEXAS: (STAMMERS IN SURPRISE) Eh-- Whut?


HANNIE: (BLAZING MAD) I'll tend to you! You don't look so big, and you don't look so handsome to me!


BUZZEY: (PLEASED) Give it to him, Hannie!


PAP: Shet up, you!


TEXAS: (PLEADING) Now, Hannie--


HANNIE: Don't you Hannie me! Gonna run off with me, and me under your arm, is that it? If I ever seen a lantern-jawed, cock-eyed idiot that couldn't say "Boo!" to a fly, you're it! Every time I look at you, I - I git ringworm.


TEXAS: (WOUNDED) Oh, Hannie--


HANNIE: Whyn't you beat it up the road and find a place that'd suit you better?


RED: (OFF) Hey, Texas!


TEXAS: Now, I wisht you'd listen to me--


HANNIE: Gether your things and git!


RED: (OFF) Hey, Texas!


BUZZEY: And don't you never come around--


PAP: Shet up, Buzzey! He ain't done nuthin' to you!


RED: (APPROACHES, SHOUTING) Hey, Texas, man a-comin'!


BLACK: Marshal from Verdigree!


RED: Big man, with a hat and a pistol! 


BLACK: Comin' along the road like a bat outa thunder!


TEXAS: How's that? 


RED: The marshal from Verdigree lookin' fer trouble! 


TEXAS: (DEJECTED, UNCARING) Oh, the marshal. Well, let him come. 


RED AND BLACK: Whut? 


TEXAS: Let him come, I said. 


BLACK: He'll git ya!


RED: Th'ow you in jail!


BLACK: Shoot a hole th'ough you!


TEXAS: Huh! We'll see about that.


PAP: (MAGNANIMOUS) Tell you whut I'll do, pardner. 'F you git shot, I'll bury you right nice -- and put up a stone made out of a weepin' willer tree with a sign on it that says, "He fit and died."


TEXAS: (AGREEABLE) That'll be nice.


MARSHAL: (SHARPLY) Hands up, the lot of ya! You, too, lady. (TO TEXAS) Now, Mr. Born-in-Texas, I've got you again. And this time you ain't gonna git away. From the looks of that jail, you musta been full of elephant juice. You must be Mr. Samson before he got his hair cut! (TO PAP) He a friend of yourn, Pap?


PAP: Yes, sir, he is.


BUZZEY: He ain't!


PAP: Yes, he is!


TEXAS: Well, we might jist as well hit the pike now as to stand here a-talkin'.


MARSHAL: You got more sense than I give you credit for. You ain't got a gun on you nowheres, have you?


TEXAS: You tuck my gun away from me before.


MARSHAL: [Yeah, I did.] The rest of you can put your hands down, 'f you want to.


HANNIE: Looks like you could shet up talkin' so much and take this here crimernal outa here. I'd be right glad. (WITH REAL DISAPPOINTMENT) I thought he was somethin' special! A nine-footer -- stridin' along with his head so high. Now I know he's just a thing on stilts -- and the stilts is shaky and full of worm holes!


TEXAS: Listen, Hannie, if I git outa this and come back, whut'll

you do?


HANNIE: Spit in yer face!


TEXAS: You shore?


HANNIE: Shore am!


TEXAS: (DISHEARTENED) Well, I reckon I won't be back here, then. I reckon I won't be back nowhur now till I git my second wind. This is the first time I've been knocked holler by a female. Kinda gits a feller down in the mouth.


MARSHAL: Come on, Mr. Texas! And if you make one false move, I'll put a hole in you thet you c'n see daylight through!


TEXAS: (MOVING OFF) I reckon I'll jist try to keep from gettin' any more till the one I got's healed up a little bit.


SOUND: PAUSE FOR THE DEPARTURE OF TEXAS AND THE MARSHAL


PAP: (ASTONISHED) Well, I'm a cow and a calf. Never lifted a finger! He mighta kicked the marshal on the shins onct, anyhow!


BUZZEY: (WITH CRAZY EXUBERANCE) I told you, I told you! A coward and a liar and a ring toom toom! 


HANNIE: (SADLY) And what a fool.


BUZZEY: Yeah, I'm shore proud of you, Hannie. A womern after my own heart! I'm glad you come to your senses. Let's jump a train to Claremore and git spliced -- hitched up together same as before! Nen after that, we'll hop another train and git home 'fore sundown!


HANNIE: [Jawbone of a whale and hock of a terrapin!] Go home with you?! Why, you little dried-up blue-nosed old buzzard, smellin' of a dead cow in the summertime! Go home with a corpse?!


BUZZEY: (SHOCKED) Hannie!


HANNIE: If you knowed whut I was gonna do, you'd have a conniption fit! (ENTHUSIASTIC, TO RED AND BLACK) Come on, you Ikes! We're a-goin' somewheres!


RED AND BLACK: (HAPPY) Wild and reckless, borned in Texas! Suckled by a bear, steel backbone--


MUSIC: BRIDGE ... ACOUSTIC GUITAR PLAYS "ARKANSAS TRAVELER"


SOUND: GAVEL BANGS

 

JUDGE: Order in the courtroom! I ain't gonna pay no attention to the rightfulness or wrongfulness of pro-cedure this mornin'! Court's been dee-fied and spit on, and I'm gonna do some dee-fyin' and spittin' myself! This here feller, Mr. Texas, has got drunk, which is agin the law. He's broke outa jail after beatin' up the guard, which is agin the law. He's smashed up the courtroom, which is agin the law. He's run plumb away, which is also agin the law. Fer gettin' drunk, I only sentenced him to twelve days in the calaboose. Now then, addin' on to that, fer smashin' up the courtroom and for breakin' outa jail--


MARSHAL: And fer beatin' up the guard! 


JUDGE: Shet up! Nobody ast you to speak. (RESUMES) Six months in jail and two hundred dollars. (TO TEXAS) Now, then, have you got anything to say? 


TEXAS: Well, I ain't got two hundred dollars.


JUDGE: That ain't no excuse.


TEXAS: And you ain't got no jail.


JUDGE: Whut? Whut's the matter with the jail?


TEXAS: (DRY) Well, I - I reckon a cyclone struck it!


JUDGE: D'you mean to tell me--?! Neb, come here. Whut'd you let him tear the roof offen your jail fer?


NEB: He jist done it, jedge. He went an' tied me up first.


JUDGE: (DISGUSTED) Tied you up? Neb Withers, I'm gonna turn this prisoner over to you, and you'll jist have to keep him 'thout a jail.


NEB: Yeah, but, jedge, I cain't keep him here 'f he doan wanta stay.


JUDGE: You got handcuffs, ain't you?


NEB: But, jedge, I cain't have that! I'm a married man!


JUDGE: That don't make no difference!


NEB: (RIGHTEOUSLY) But, jedge, I know that ain't gonna be right.


JUDGE: Shet up! We gotta do sump'n with him.


NEB: Well, now, the marshal here-- He - he ain't married.


MARSHAL: I'll break your neck!


SOUND: GAVEL BANGS


JUDGE: Order in the courtroom! (BEAT, SURPRISED) Whutta you doin' in here, Miz Foster?


MRS. FOSTER: (GIGGLES) Well, it's court, ain't it? Open to the public? (FLIRTY, TO TEXAS) Howd' do, prisoner? Glad to see you!


SOUND: GAVEL BANGS


JUDGE: Order in the--!


MRS. FOSTER: Oh, don't mind me, jedge. I ain't gonna be a mite of trouble. Jist go right on 'th yer jedgin'. My brother [that] used to steal hogs always said, "They ain't no use in goin' up 'fore Jedge Snodgrass, fer yer sure to git ninety days in the calaboose, wh'er you're guilty or not." Course, Davy was always guilty, jedge, I'll say that fer ya! Davy jist couldn't keep his hands offen hogs. I'll never forgit, one time he--


JUDGE: Miz Foster, ef you don't shet up a-talkin' about hogs and things, you'll have to leave the courtroom!


MRS. FOSTER: (HUFFILY) I ain't interferin' 'th justice, am I?


JUDGE: (EXPLODES) I jist said shet yer mouth! (BEAT, CALMLY) As I was sayin' when Miz Foster come a-buttin' in--


MARSHAL: You warn't sayin' nothin', jedge; it was me!


SOUND: GAVEL BANGS


JUDGE: Order, I said!


MARSHAL: Neb, here, had been tryin' to put you up to handcuffin' this prisoner to me, and I jist said to Neb I'd break his neck -- and I will, too! -- if you don't--


NEB: You keep yore hands offen me!


JUDGE: If it ain't one thing, it's another. Order; an' shet up, you two; an' quit it! 


MARSHAL: I beg yore pardon, jedge. But if that little wart thinks that he can--


NEB: Don't you call me no wart!


JUDGE: Shet up!


SOUND: DOOR OPENS AS HANNIE ENTERS


HANNIE: (APPROACHES) Well, Texas! If you ain't a pretty one! No gumption! I'm ashamed of ya! Jedge, you let this man alone, you hear, or there'll be trouble!


JUDGE: (WITH ICY EXASPERATED RAGE) Here, lady! You run this here court, you're so smart! Take this here gavel! I'm gonna get someone to ree-pair the jail! (MOVING OFF) And if this prisoner's gone when I git back, I'll shore crown the lot of ya!


SOUND: DOOR SLAMS AS THE JUDGE EXITS


HANNIE: Well, of all the--! What's the matter with that ole mustard plaster? What'd he give me this here thing fer? Run the court myself, he said. You heard what he said! That's a good one! I'd do it right, too! I'd turn all the prisoners loose, let 'em run hog wild. I'd show 'em the road. That's the kinda jedgin' I'd do!


MARSHAL: You better stay down from the jedge's bench!


HANNIE: I'd th'ow all the marshals in the crick!


MARSHAL: Git down from there, I told you!


HANNIE: I'd burn all the law books and start all over. I'd tell nobody whur to stand, and nobody'd tell me whur to set!


MARSHAL: (ANNOYED) This ain't right, this ain't reg'lar! And if you don't shet up, I'll arrest you fer contempt!


HANNIE: (CALLS) Come on in here, you Ikes!


SOUND: DOOR BURSTS OPEN AS THE IKES ENTER


RED AND BLACK: Wild and reckless, borned in Texas--! (ET CETERA)


SOUND: THE IKES SCUFFLE WITH THE MARSHAL, IN BG ... CHAIR OVERTURNED ... GUN DROPS TO FLOOR


TEXAS: Hold on to that marshal, you crazies! Hey, gimme that gun! It's mine anyway! I thought I recognized it!


MARSHAL: (FURIOUS) I'll fix you, ever' one of you! I'll have the law on you!


SOUND: GAVEL BANGS ... SCUFFLE ENDS BEHIND--


HANNIE: Here, here! Is it the law you're a-talkin' about, Mr. Marshal? Here's the law! This thing! A polished piece of post oak a-poundin' on a holler piece of pine! That's the law!


TEXAS: Here, set down! All of ya! (MIGHTY PLEASED) Now, then! This is jist the kind of courtroom I like! The law with its teeth pulled and the prisoner with a shootin' iron! This here is justice! Now I'm myself again! I'm shore glad to've met you-all. And I don't wish you no more bad luck than the cholery morbus. I'll see you all in--


HANNIE: (FURIOUS) Jist a minute!


TEXAS: Well?


HANNIE: Don't be in no hurry.


TEXAS: I've fooled around enough in these parts. It ain't healthy.


HANNIE: Air you as blind as a bat? 


TEXAS: Well, no, I ain't. 


HANNIE: You air, too!


TEXAS: I ain't! 


HANNIE: Here, take this gavel! 


TEXAS: (TAKES GAVEL, PLEASED) All right. Now I guess I got the law on my side! 


HANNIE: Now then, you c'n do things fer yourself. I'm through with you. You're green as grass, you don't know two whoops about women, [and whut you don't know about anything would make thirty million books full of close printing. When you first come along, I kinda tuck to you -- I thought you stepped right off a mountain some'eres. I thought you was full of shine like a scoured pot. I thought if you set, the sun'd set! Course] you're blind as a bat! If you wasn't, you'd see I've hotfooted it clear here to Verdigree, waded through weeds, and got chiggers on me all the way from my feet to whur I sit down! And whut fer? To try to git a fool of a man outa trouble that's had a landslide in his head and cain't even remember who he's supposed to be! Now git outa my way!


TEXAS: (AMAZED) Hannie! 


HANNIE: Don't you Hannie me! 


TEXAS: I've never seen a womern like you in all my life. You're crazy and reckless and wild. An' so'm I. [You're walkin' the earth temporary, like you knowed sump'n secret. So'm I. You got eyes and hair -- everything a little better'n the next womern, and] you suit me right down to the ground. I git awful lonesome bein' by myself, and it looks like you would.


HANNIE: [I ain't all by myself. Say,] air you invitin' me to travel with ya?


TEXAS: I was headed in that direction. (A SPELLBINDING SALES PITCH) We could swim in the cricks, we could watch it git sunup and sundown! See lightnin', hear thunder! Walk on th' wind! Burn yer tail feathers on th' sun! Feed natural, sing strong! Stop when you feel like stoppin'! Stay put when you feel like stayin' put!


HANNIE: (PLEASED) Well! That's sump'n! (FRIENDLY WARNING) But I'd kick yer shins and pull out yer hair. I'd blister yer with my tongue ever' couple o' days!


TEXAS: (PASSIONATELY) I'd hate you 'f you didn't! Come on! Go with me! Wouldn't see another womern but you; wouldn't think of another womern but you.


HANNIE: (BREATHLESS) Look out now!


TEXAS: You -- you -- all the time, day in, day out! Me and you! Like it ort to be! Like it was wrote down! Oh, it makes me dizzy!


HANNIE: (DAZED) Don't talk that way!


TEXAS: You in my arms. I'd make love to you! Kiss you the way you'd never been kissed before.


HANNIE: Kiss me then.


TEXAS: (LOVINGLY) Oh, Hannie! (PAUSE FOR A KISS) [(RAPTUROUSLY) I'm blind! Lightnin's struck! The world's ended! Kiss me!


HANNIE: Whur air you? (KISS)


TEXAS: The trees is smokin'! My feet's burnin'!]


RED AND BLACK: Hannie's got a feller! Hannie's got a feller! Nyeah! Nyeah! Hannie's got a feller! (ET CETERA, OUT BEHIND--)


MARSHAL: (EXPLODES) I ain't gonna stand for this no more! I ain't never seen sich goin's-on in a court of law! Makin' a fool outa me, and the courthouse, too! Blamed if I don't--!


TEXAS: Now, you set down! Don't you move an eyelash, or I'll shoot it off ya!


HANNIE: Texas! Quick, we got to be movin' from here! Ef the jedge gits back, they'll git you agin!


TEXAS: Yeah, I fergot all about it.


HANNIE: I hadn't!


TEXAS: Well, am I goin' with you, or are you goin' with me?


HANNIE: Well, I cain't run off an' leave Pap.


TEXAS: No, I reckon not! That means I'm goin' with you and Pap, then. (LIGHTLY) Unless you're goin' home with Buzzey.


HANNIE: (AMUSED) I don't know him from Adam!


TEXAS: No?


HANNIE: No.


TEXAS: Do you know me from Adam?


HANNIE: No. As far as I'm concerned -- you air Adam!


TEXAS: Whoo-hoo! We'll git Pap, hitch up the wagon, and stamp out the f'ar! We're leavin' this place! I was borned on th' side of th' road! I like to walk fur, to cut up jake, and let out my lungs considerable! Like to walk on th' hills that no one can locate!


MARSHAL: Just ferget I'm here, if ya don't want.


TEXAS: (A SMOOTH SALES PITCH) You're too good a man to marshal. You ort to go back to farmin'. Hannie, you know whut'll happen to him someday?


HANNIE: Whut?


TEXAS: (WITH TENSE EXAGGERATION, VISUALIZING IT) Someday he'll start to arrest a feller -- a mean 'un! Start to put the handcuffs on him -- and then that feller'll reach out like a cat and grab him! Claw him to ribbons! Tie his arms in a hard knot!


HANNIE: (CATCHING HIS EXCITEMENT) Jump on him with hobnails!


TEXAS: Break his laigs!


HANNIE: Cut off his years!


TEXAS: Crack his ribs! And then that feller'll shoot the marshal six times! (TO MARSHAL) Kill you dead, that's whut he'll do!


MARSHAL: (ALARMED) You - you keep yer hands offen me!


TEXAS: You don't want me, Mr. Marshal. You don't want me!


MARSHAL: (BAFFLED) No?


TEXAS: There! (ECSTATIC) Now! I knowed you'd come to yer senses! Good ole marshal! Come on, you Ikes, let's--


MARSHAL: Here, here, I never said you could go! Here, you--!


NEB: Now, don't you let that crimernal go! I'll tell the jedge!


MARSHAL: Shet up, Neb Withers! Don't you tell me whut to do! I guess I know whut I can and cain't do!


TEXAS: Come on, Hannie! Good luck, Mr. Marshal! Keep outa trouble!


MARSHAL: You better beat it, 'fore I change my mind.


TEXAS: Jist a minute! Here.


MARSHAL: Whut's that?


TEXAS: This here hunk of wood's the law. We ain't got a mite o' use for it. You take it.


MARSHAL: (EVASIVELY) I - I got my hands full!


TEXAS: Leave it fer the jedge, then.


HANNIE: (CHEERFUL) Goodbye, Mr. Marshal!


TEXAS: Here we go! Rarin' to step! Come on, Hannie! Come on, you Ikes! Goodbye, you-all! I'll bet you wish you was us!


MUSIC: CURTAIN ... ACOUSTIC GUITAR PLAYS "ARKANSAS TRAVELER" ... THEN IN BG, UNTIL END


ANNOUNCER: Tonight, the Columbia Workshop has brought to you "Roadside" by Lynn Riggs, adapted by Alan M. Fishburn. The cast included Wesley Addy as Texas, Jean Muir as Hannie, Joe Latham as Pap, Ian MacAllaster as Buzzey, John Mitchell as Red, Bill Mitchell as Black, Artell Dickson as the marshal. Jerry Macy played the judge, Roy Fant was Neb, and Elsie Mae Gordon was Mrs. Foster. The songs were sung by Burl Ives and Earle McGill directed the production.


Next Sunday at this same time, the Columbia Workshop welcomes back a young author-director whose recent drama, "Dress Rehearsal," made a profound impression on many of our listeners. This time, however, he presents one of his own original comedies written especially for the Workshop. It's called "The Still Small Voice" and the author is Jack Moseman. The Workshop invites you to be with us again next Sunday.


This is the Columbia Broadcasting System.

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