S1 E24 The Grass Is Always Greener

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 The Grass Is Always Greener

Written by David P. Harmon

Carol and Mike switch their household jobs to see just how much easier the other one has it. Will they succeed, or will they discover the grass isn’t always greener on the other side? Hope you enjoy the script.

CAST OF CHARACTERS

MIKE BRADY

CAROL BRADY

ALICE NELSON

GREG BEADY

MARCIA BRADY

PETER BRADY

JAN BRADY

BOBBY BRADY

CINDY BRADY

(The episode begins with the boys coming into the house from playing baseball in the backyard. Alice throws each of them an apple.)

Alice: Hey, Tinkers, Evers, Chance.

Bobby: Who?

Alice: Who? Tinkers to Evers to Chance, That’s the greatest double play combination in baseball.

Greg: Cool, when was that?

Alice: Oh, about (Pause) Oh yeah, I don’t even tell my mother how old I am. Keep moving.

Mike (coming in after them): Oh, Willie Mays gets $125,000 a year and he’s underpaid.

Alice: Water, milk or plasma?

Mike: Water.

Carol (coming in the kitchen): You okay, honey?

Mike: Yeah, just pooped, that’s all.

Carol: Oh, the sandwiches ready, Alice?

Alice: Yeah, all set.

Mike: Hey, you going someplace?

Carol; Marcia’s nature study badge.

Mike: Oh, that sounds like fun.

Carol: Fun? We’ve got exactly 4 hours to fins and identify 11 kinds of trees, 10 types of plants, 6 wildflowers and 3 noxious weeds.

Mike: Well, that still sounds like fun.

Carol: Fun? This is hard work.

Mike: Oh, Carol, hard work is an hour in the hot sun with three growing boys.

Carol: Ha-ha. Playing baseball with the boys is fun compared to this.

Mike: Eh, you woman just don’t understand.

Carol: Alice, what are we going to do about him?

Alice: We? Last time I got between a man and his wife was the last time I got between a man and his wife.

Marcia (yelling): Mom, we’re ready.

Carol: Coming girls. (to Mike) Bye, dear. (She kisses him.)

Mike: Bye.

Carol: See you later. (She leaves.)

Mike: You know something, Alice? I could jog around the block four or five times, then take a nice, cold shower, if it weren’t for one thing.

Alice: What’s that, Mr. Brady?

Mike: I can’t get out of the chair.

(Alice helps him out of the chair and the scene fades out.)

(The next scene has Mike and Carol in the bedroom, with Carol telling Mike how her day went.)

Carol: Then naturally, Cindy had to fall into a stream and Jan had to go in after her, and I would up getting completely soaked.

Mike (starting to brush his teeth): Well, it just goes to show that the modern woman is totally incapable of dealing with (Pause) If she followed the example of her grandmother, she’d be far better off.

Carol: Well, I certainly can’t argue with that.

(He goes into the bathroom and she takes out a book.)

Mike (getting into bed): Honey, if I hadn’t spent the whole morning playing ball with the boys, you’d get all my sympathy.

Carol: Do you realize that in the past month, I’ve had to help Marcia get her water fun badge, her foot traveler’s badge, her gypsy badge, and this morning, her Daniel Boone badge. and at the same time, keep two other girls occupied.

Mike: Well, at least it’s a variety.

Carol: Do you know in how many different directions three spirited girls can move at the same time?

Mike: Three.

Carol: Three hundred, and next Saturday while you’re playing in the backyard, oh, Marcia’s cooking badge.

Mike: Honey, they’re girls, the gentler sex. Now, three boys are…

(The next day, they are continuing the argument in the kitchen with Alice.)

Carol: Much easier to handle.

Mike: They are like heck. What’s more exhausting than playing ball with three young boys?

Carol: Chasing after three young girls.

Alice: You two are beginning to repeat yourselves.

Carol: Alice, he won’t listen to logic.

Mike: And she won’t listen to hard facts.

Alice: If you’re both so sure you’re right, next Saturday why don’t you simply switch jobs.

(Carol and Mike look at her with bewilderment.)

(Next, we go up to the boys’ room, where they are awaiting a talk from Mike.)

Greg: I wonder why Dad wants to see us.

Bobby: I didn’t do it.

Peter: Didn’t do what?

Bobby: Whatever it is Dad wants to see us about.

(Mike come sin the room.)

Mike: How’s it going, boys.

Bobby: We won’t do it again, honest.

Mike: Relax, guys, nobody’s done anything. However, there is one thing I would like for you to do.

Peter: Anything, Dad.

Mike: Next Saturday morning, instead of me, Mother is going to help you with baseball practice.

Greg (shocked): Dad, she’s a girl, a female.

Mike: You noticed that too.

Peter: We’ve got to get ready for Little League. You were going to help us practice bunting.

Mike: It’s just for a few hours, one Saturday.

Greg: This calls for a vote, right?

Mike: Wrong, wrong. Boys, I’m simply trying to show your mother that helping girls is a cinch compared to helping boys.

Peter and Bobby: Oh.

Greg: Well, that’s different, right fellas?

Peter and Bobby: Right.

Mike: Good. Carry on, men.

Greg: Okay, Dad. (He and the guys are gloating) Mom will find out how tough it is.

(Cut over to the girls room, where Carol is having the same discussion with them.)

Carol: Girls, have I got a surprise for you.

Jan: Oh, what is it?

Carol: Well, actually, it’s really for Marcia, and I know she’s gonna be so happy about it.

Marcia: What?

Carol: Well, next Saturday, Daddy’s going to help you with your cooking badge.

(Marcia lets out a disgusted sigh.)

Cindy: Marcia doesn’t look very happy.

Marcia: Mom, Alice won’t even let Dad in the kitchen.

Carol: But that’s the point. Sometimes a man has to be taught just how difficult it is to be a woman.

Jan; How tough it is to be a woman?

Cindy: It’s easy for me.

Marcia: I think I know what you mean, Mom.

Carol: Aw, then you’ll do it?

Marcia: If that’s what you want.

Carol: Oh, thanks dear.

(Carol leaves the room but Marcia still looks unhappy.)

(Next, Mike and Carol are downstairs in the living room, reading the paper.)

Carol: Well, I think I’ll get ready for bed.

Mike: Feel all right?

Carol: Yeah, just a little touch of a headache.

Mike (getting up from his chair): Well, then, sleep’s the thing. (He kisses her and helps her get up from her chair.) Besides, I have a little work to do before I turn in.

(They walk over to the staircase.)

Carol: Well, good night, dear.

Mike: Good night, honey.

(She goes up the stairs and he goes in the den. When Carol goes upstairs, she gets a few books on baseball entitled Rudiments of Baseball, Tips from Ruth to Mays and Baseball: The Art of Offense and Defense. She takes one of them and starts to read it. Meanwhile, Mike looks for some cooking books in his den. They were known as How to cook in 30 easy lessons, Cooking can be fun and You too can be a chef. They both read from the books at the same time.)

Carol: Men on first and third, with one out, the batter must…

(We cut over to Mike reading.)

Mike: Pour a cup of vinegar into…

Carol: The catcher’s mitt, this is the best way to hide signals from…

Mike: The salt and pepper. always make sure to properly season every…

Carol: Umpire. He must not allow the pitcher to touch his fingers to his…

Mike: Pot. always remember that too many onions or too much garlic…

Carol: Will keep the shortstop away from the third baseman.

Mike: One cup of sugar, one half cup of white vinegar. One tablespoon of chopped green pepper.

Carol: Bat held high behind right ear. Weight on right foot. Hips horizontal to flight of ball.

(The next scene has Carol meeting the boys outside in the backyard to play ball.)

Carol: Ah, good morning boys.

Boys: Good morning, Mom.

Carol (noticing a mitt): Well, mind if I use one of these.

Greg: Sure, it’s a baseball glove.

Carol: Yeah, I know. Well, your Dad told me you were going to work on bunting practice today. Okay if I, uh, play first base?

Greg: Oh, Mom, that’s third base.

Carol: Right. (She runs over to first base.) All right, men. Now I’m going to give you the art of defense against the bunt. Now, the first baseman breaks for the plate, the second basemen covers first. The third basemen breaks for the plate, and the shortstop covers second, Got it? (Bobby goes to bat.) Okay, Bobby boy, let’s bunt that ball. Atta way, boy, atta way. Come on, sweetheart, atta way to go, atta way. (He hits the ball but Carol falls trying to catch it. She gets embarrassed.) That, boys, is called an error.

Greg (laughing): Yeah, that’s what it’s called, all right.

(Next, Carol is showing the guys another bunting procedure.)

Carol: Boys, pay close attention. I’m going to show you the proper stance in executing a bunt. Ready? Okay, now, the right foot is in the back, left foot is in the front. Bat is held high behind right ear. Hips are pushed forward. Put your weight on your right foot, flex your left knee. Place your left (Pause) Elbow, toward left field and your right elbow in. Now, put your head back, hold your stomach in, and point your toes, out.

Greg: Okay, let’s see you hit it.

Carol: Sure.

Greg: Ready?

Carol: Yeah.

(Greg pitches the ball to her. She strikes out and falls. Peter and Bobby laugh to each other. Next, she goes over something else with them.)

Carol: Now, boys, very often a bunt is used in a squeeze play, so that a man can steal home base.

Greg: Could you show us how, Mom?

Carol: Oh, sure, nothing to it. Now the correct procedure is to slide into home base to avoid being tagged. Okay. just watch this now. Clear out of there, Peter. Okay, you ready? (She slides into home base but falls flat on her back.) See, nothing to it.

(The guys try helping her up.)

Alice (coming out): Apple turnovers, for anybody who wants them.

(The boys unwittingly drop her and run inside the house. After they finish, Greg taps Bobby and they go upstairs. Carol come sin the house, sore and humiliated.)

Carol: Alice, is Mr. Brady around?

Alice: No.

Carol: Good.

Alice: Marcia gave him a list to take to the market for things she needs for her cooking badge.

Carol: Oh, what I need is a hot bath.

Alice: Then I’ll draw one for you.

Carol: Alice, I feel so stupid. Mr. Brady’s going to have a cinch compared to this.

Alice: Well, Mrs. Brady, why don’t you just wait and see.

(The scene fades.)

(The next scene has Mike coming home from the store, with bags of items for Marcia’s cooking badge.)

Alice: Want me to put that stuff away?

Mike: Yeah. While I get the rest of it.

Alice: You mean there’s more?

Mike: Well, I wanted to make sure I got everything. Marcia didn’t specify which kind.

Alice (pulling potatoes out of the bag.) Idaho potatoes, new potatoes, red potatoes, sweet potatoes, so much for my 7 day diet. (She empties the other bag.) String beans, lima beans, navy beans, they must’ve been out of kidney beans. (She finds another bag.) I’m gonna be terribly disappointed if these turn out to be (She realizes what they are.) Kidney beans.

(Mike comes back in with two more bags.)

Mike (setting them down): That does it.

Alice: Customer Mart must look like a disaster area now.

Mike: Marcia has to cook a meal for our whole family, you know.

Alice: Family? There is enough here to feed Cleveland, Ohio.

(Upstairs, a very sore Carol is sitting down and struggling to undress and get into the bath.)

Alice: That tub is good and hot, Mrs. Brady.

Carol: Oh, thanks, Alice.

Alice (taking out some creams and soaps): Now, you can use any one or all of these. I got deep heat, wet heat, muscle relaxer, ointment.

Carol: Alice, Alice, I’m stuck.

(Alice helps her out of the chair.)

Alice: I told you, keep moving, keep moving.

Carol: How can I? Every single, solitary muscle in my body is aching.

Alice: You’ll be fine in no time.

Carol: Oh, Alice, how long is no time?

Alice: Including outpatient treatments, about four months.

Carol: Oh, if Mr. Brady ever finds out about this, I’ll never hear the end.

Alice: Believe me, he will never know.

Carol: But I can’t stand up, I can’t sit down, I can’t..(Alice has Carol sniff a foul smelling deodorant.)

Alice: That’s why he’ll never know, you put this stuff on, he won’t get within two miles of you.

Carol (sarcastically): Oh, thanks a lot, Alice.

Mike (calling to her): Carol! (He comes in.) What’s the matter, honey? You okay?

Carol: Oh, I, uh, I was just getting ready to take a bath.

Mike: Uh-huh. How did it go this morning?

Carol: Did you, uh, see the boys?

Mike: No, the boys were gone before I got back.

Carol: Great, I mean, it went just great. I taught them everything they ought to know.

Mike: Yeah, well, I just want to remind you to stay out of the kitchen, honey, because, that’s my job.

Carol: Okay, I’ll stay out of the kitchen.

Alice: She’ll force herself.

Mike: I’ll see you later.

(He leaves the room and Carol sighs in pain again.)

Carol: Alice, help.

Alice: Come on, come on.

(She helps her into the bathroom. Mike is downstairs with the girls, as he prepares to help Marcia.)

Mike: Marcia, I got everything you wanted. You know, sometimes I wasn’t sure so I got quite a bit.

Marcia: We saw you carry it in.

Mike: Yes.

Jan: You’re strong, Dad.

Mike: Now, uh, Jan’s gonna have to do this next year so how about letting her watch.

Marcia: Okay.

Jan: Hey, thanks.

Mike: And I think it would be a nice gesture if we let Cindy.

Marcia: Oh, do we have to have the baby here?

Cindy (coming from the family room): I’m not a  baby.

Mike: Come on in, Cindy.

Cindy: Did somebody call me?

Jan: You were snooping.

Cindy: I was not too snooping, I was listening. (to Mike) I promise I won’t get in the way.

Marcia: Okay.

Mike: Okay, come on, Cindy, on the step stool. (She sits down) Jan, you’re where you can see everything. (Alice comes out of her room.) Oh, Alice, you can have the rest of the afternoon off.

Alice: Well, I’d like to watch, okay?

Marcia: If you promise not to help.

Alice: Cross my heart.

Mike: Okay. Okay, Marcia, now, what’s on the menu.

Marcia: I thought we’d start with chilled tomato juice.

Mike: Hmm, that’s a good choice, yeah.

Cindy: Yuck.

Marcia: Got a better idea?

Cindy: Ice cream.

Marcia (to Mike): I told you she was a baby.

Cindy: I’m not a baby.

Mike: Cindy, now you promised to be quiet, right?

(Cindy quiets down.)

Marcia: after the tomato juice, with lemon,  (She and Cindy stick their tongues out at each other.) Egg salad, French fried potatoes, breaded veal cutlets, string beans. Did you get the string beans?

Alice: Oh, we’ve got string beans, lima beans, navy beans.

Mike: Go on, Marcia.

Alice: And kidney beans.

Marcia: And for dessert, cake with chocolate frosting.

Mike: Hey, yeah! Okay, madam, the kitchen is yours.

(Marcia takes milk and Mike gets an apron from the closet and puts it on. She sets the milk on the table, then gets a couple more items, while Mike is sitting on Jan’s lap and they watch.)

Mike: Hold it.

Marcia; What’s wrong?

Mike: Marcia, look, no organization. See, now, that’s the trouble with women. You should only go to the refrigerator once and take out everything you need, see. Wait a minute, I’ll show you. (He goes to the refrigerator and takes a bunch of items out at once.) String beans, lettuce, mayonnaise for the salad, and, eggs.

(He drops the eggs and slips on them. Marcia screams.)

Cindy (clapping): That was funny, Daddy.

(Marcia helps him get back up.)

Mike: Well, if an accident does occur, you clean it up, immediately.

Alice: I’ll do it.

Mike: It’s my accident. I’ll clean it up.

(He gets some paper towels.)

Alice: Mr. Brady.

Mike: No, I’ll do it.

Alice: But Mr. Brady.

Marcia: Mom uses a mop for that.

Alice: So does Alice.

Mike: I’ll use a towel.

(He grabs a coupe of paper towels and cleans the mess. Next, we have him showing Marcia the electric mixer.)

Mike: Marcia, you knw, the proper way to do that is with an electric mixer.

Marcia: I never used an electric mixer.

Mike: Oh, it’s simple, wait a minute. (He pulls it out.) This thing was invented for the sole reason of making life easier for women, see. Now, (he takes Marcia’s bowl filled with chocolate cake.) We just put the bowl under here, and turn it on. (Alice smiles as Mike makes his attempt. He realizes a mistake he made.) Oh, first we have to plug it in.

(The girls scream as he sets it wrong and makes a huge mess. The batter of the cake fizzles all over the kitchen. Next, Marcia is making veal cutlets.)

Marcia: Now, all I have to do is make this breading for the cutlets.

Mike: You know, you need a bigger bowl for that. There’s one over here in the cupboard.

Alice: Careful, Mr. Brady, I stacked a lot of things up there.

Marcia: Be careful, Daddy. The floor may still be slippery from all the eggs.

Mike: No, I cleaned it up.

(He fell with a bunch of things stacked in the cupboard along with him.)

Marcia, Jan and Cindy: Oh, Daddy.

(Later, Mike studies the large mess he left behind.)

Mike: I did all this?

Alice: In under two hours. That’s a new Olympic record.

Mike: Well, I might as well clean it up.

Alice: I’ll help you.

Mike: No, I did it, I’ll clean it. And with a proper sense of male organization, it shouldn’t take more than (Pause.) Two days. No, no, 15 minutes.

Alice: Oh, 15 minutes to clean up this mess?

Mike: And that includes mopping the floor.

Alice: Go.

(Mike takes the mop and bucket out of the pantry. He puts the bucket in the sink and puts bleach in it. He then checks it to see if the water’s hot enough and he used enough bleach. He sets it on the floor and begins to mop.)

Mike: I work better a capella.

(Mike continues to mop.)

Alice: Mr. Brady.

Mike: Alice, I’m doing this.

Alice: Yeah, but Mr. Brady, I just…

(Mike slips and lands head first into the bucket.)

Mike: Alice, what were you trying to say?

Alice: When that floor gets wet, it’s slippery.

Mike: Thanks, Alice.

(Later on, Mike and Carol are in their room, lamenting over their day and struggling to get dressed for dinner.)

Carol: How are you doing?

Mike: Well, okay, I guess. How about you?

Carol: Oh, pretty good, I guess.

Mike: Spending the afternoon with three girls isn’t as easy as I thought it was going to be.

Carol: Well, playing ball with three boys isn’t exactly a breeze either.

Mike: See?

Carol: Honey, could you, uh, zip me up?

Mike: Yeah, I’ll try.

(He successfully zips her dress.)

Carol: Thanks.

Mike: Well, it’s like the saying goes, the grass is always greener in someone else’s backyard.

Carol: Well, I guess we both learned a lesson.

Mike: Right.

(They start to hug.)

Carol: Oh, honey, it’s not that I don’t love you, but, uh, my arms are stiff.

Marcia (calling from downstairs): Mom, Dad, dinner’s ready.

Carol: We’ll be right there.

(The kids are downstairs at the table waiting for their parents to join them.)

Peter: Hey, I’m hungry, where’s Mom and Dad.

Marcia: They’re on their way down.

Bobby: Good, I’m hungry too.

Greg: Listen, you guys won’t be so hungry when you taste the dinner, Marcia made it, you know.

(The guys laugh.)

Marcia: Wait till you taste it, smarty.

Cindy: It’s delicious.

Greg: Well how do you know?

Cindy: I helped her.

(Carol and Mike come down the stairs.)

Jan: Oh, here come Mom and Dad.

Mike: Hi, kids.

Carol: We’ll be right there.

Cindy: Mommy looks funny.

Bobby: So does Dad.

(They painstakingly move to the table.)

Greg (pulling Carol’s chair out): Here, I’ll get it, Mom.

Carol: Thanks, honey. Thanks, thanks very much.

Mike: Hey, the table looks marvelous, Marcia.

Alice (bringing the meal out): Now, here’s the dish that ought to get two awards.

(She sets it down.)

Greg: Hey, that doesn’t look bad.

Peter: It even looks pretty good.

(Alice pulls Mike’s chair out.)

Mike: Thanks, Alice.

Alice: Don’t mention it.

(Mike groans as he sits down.)

Bobby: Dad, can I have the rolls?

(Mike gets them and passes them to Bobby, albeit with some pain.)

Carol: May I have the milk, Mommy?

Carol: Sure. (She takes the milk and pours it for Cindy, with agony. She spills some on the table.) Sorry.

Jan: This is great, Marcia.

Maria: Thank you.

Greg: This is good.

Peter: Yep.

Bobby: Real neat.

(When dinner is over, the kids start to get up to leave.)

Mike: You kids are excused if you want to leave.

Carol: Marcia, it was delicious.

Greg: It was a great meal, Marcia.

Marcia: Thank you.

(Mike removes a napkin from Bobby’s chair as the kids get up to go outside. Carol helps Cindy remove a napkin.)

Carol: Here, dear, I’ll help.

Cindy: Thank you. (to the other kids) Wait for me!

Mike: Honey, I am sore all over, I can’t move a muscle.

Carol: You want to now something, neither can I. It’s worse now than it was before dinner.

Mike: It’s because your muscles have stiffened up, so have mine. (He calls) Alice! Help.

Alice: Don’t say another word.

(She helps Carol out of her chair.)

Carol: Oh, thanks, Alice.

(She goes to help Mike.)

Mike: No, I can make it.

Alice: You’re sure now?

Carol: We’ll be fine.(to Mike) Come on, Gramps.

Alice: Good night, Mr. and Mrs. Brady.

Carol: Good night, Alice.

Mike: Good night, Alice.

(She starts to clear the table off as Mike and Carol go upstairs.)

Alice (coming out to collect more dishes): Good night, Mr. and Mrs. Brady.

Carol: Good night, Alice.

Mike: Good night, Alice.

(They continue up the stairs and Alice gets some more dishes.)

Alice: Good night, Mr. and Mrs. Brady.

Carol: Good night, Alice

(They are still climbing the stairs and Alice gets some more dishes.)

Alice: Good night, Mr. and Mrs. Brady.

Carol: Alice, what’s good about it?

Mike: Never mind, Alice.

(The scene fades out with them still climbing the stairs and Alice still clearing the table.)

(The final scene has Mike and Carol in the kitchen, discussing their next chore with the kids.)

Mike: Certainly was a delicious dinner Marcia cooked last night.

Carol: Well, next Saturday, she has to work on her sewing badge.

(She hands him a banana.)

Mike: Yeah, next Saturday, I promised the boys we’d play football.

Carol: Well, I guess I’ll have to make patterns, cut material, sew and hem, stitch and line.

Mike: Yeah, just sitting around with Marcia, sewing for a couple of hours.

Carol: You make it sound like a breeze.

Mike: Well, it’s certainly not as tough as playing football with three boys.

Carol: Ha.

Alice: May I make a suggestion?

Carol and Mike: Forget it!

                      THE END

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