Written by Skip Webster
The Bradys go on a campaign to save their favorite park from being demolished. Things go awry when it turns out that Mike’s firm is putting up a building on the premises, threatening his job. Hope you enjoy the script.
CAST OF CHARACTERS
MAN Alice gets to sign the petition
(The episode begins with Greg and Peter playing catch in the backyard.)
Peter: Did it curve?
Greg: Yeah, it sure did.
Peter (annoyed): That’s my fast ball. (Pause) I’m some pitcher, my fast ball curves and my curve ball goes fast.
Greg: You just need some practice. Let’s go to the park, I told the guys I’d meet them over there.
(Marcia and Jan confront them as they start to leave.)
Marcia: Don’t bother, Greg. There’s not going to be any more baseball in the park.
Jan: Or volleyball, or anything.
Greg: What are you talking about?
Jan: We can’t use Woodland Park anymore.
Peter (shocked): You’re kidding.
Marcia: That’s what they told us. They’re going to put up some dumb old building.
Greg: Where are we gonna play?
Jan: Search me, but what can we do about it?
Greg: I know one thing I can do. I can have a man-to-man talk with Mr. Duncan, the park director.
Marcia: Let’s make that a girl to man talk too.
(They all leave and head down to the park. The scene fades.)
(The next scene has them all coming home. They break the bad news to Carol.)
Carol: Hi, kids.
All: Hi, Mom.
Carol: You look as if they declared recess illegal, what’s the matter?
Marcia: We’re in mourning.
Jan: For Woodland Park.
Greg: Yeah, they’re closing it down.
Carol (upset): Closing Woodland Park, what for?
Peter: So they can put a dumb old building on it.
Carol: But the city owns that park. Who’d put a building on city property?
Greg: The city.
Carol: Who told you that?
Marcia: Mr. Duncan, the park director.
Greg: And after all the trouble we went through helping keep the park clean.
Jan: And hauling all the junk to the city dump.
Peter: Isn’t there something we can do, Mom?
Greg: What can we do?
Carol: We can do what is every citizen’s right to do. We can protest, and I’ll bring it up at my next woman’s club meeting.
Marcia: That’s a great idea.
(The kids cheer their approval.)
Carol: Well, we can sure give it a try.
(That evening, Carol talk to Mike about the matter in their room.)
Carol (combing her hair): Oh, Mike, they just can’t close that park. Well, parks are becoming almost as extinct as buffaloes.
Mike (jokingly): I think you’re right. I haven’t seen a buffalo in the neighborhood in months.
Carol: Oh, Mike, be serious.
Mike: Listen honey, I’m with you all the way. I think that park is something your woman’s club should fight for.
Carol: Well, I think city hall will listen to us. I mean, after all, who was it that organized operation clean sweep for the city council? The woman’s club. And, who was it that got work groups to clean up the park when the maintenance budget was cut? The woman’s club. And who was it that donated their time to haul things from the park to the city dump?
Mike: The woman’s club.
Carol: No, you. Well, the woman’s club is gonna show them that you can fight city hall. I mean, this is gonna be one park that isn’t going to be extinct.
Mike: That’s the spirit, honey.
Carol: Do you really think a bunch of woman can save the park?
Mike: Honey, a stirred up bunch of women can save almost anything, except maybe money.
(He laughs and Carol comes after him with her brush. Mike goes into the boys’ room while they’re sleeping. He informs them to start work the next day on saving the park.)
Greg (waking up): Good night, Dad.
Mike: Oh, good night, fellas. Listen, as long as you’re awake, I want to remind you that your Mom is going to need some help tomorrow. I think you and your sisters can do your share to help save Woodland Park, okay.
Greg: We will, Dad.
Peter: We’ll do anything to save it.
Bobby: Yeah, anything.
Mike: Good, then come straight home from school and you can start delivering those petitions your Mom has from door to door, okay?
Greg: Oh, I’ve got ball practice.
Peter: I’m supposed to be at Gordie’s house.
Bobby: My cub pack is going to the zoo.
Mike (sternly): You want the park, but you want someone else to do the work, is that it? Now, listen to me, if that park is worth having, it’s worth fighting for. And if you’re going to use it, you have to help do the fighting. You don’t leave it to someone else.
Greg: You’re right, Dad. We get the message.
Peter: We’ll come straight home.
Bobby: Yeah, who needs a zoo. You’ve seen one monkey, you’ve seen them all.
(He makes faces and funny sounds imitating a monkey.)
Mike (laughing): Good night, boys.
(The next scene has Carol talking on the phone with one of her friends.)
Carol: Listen Gloria, if you can’t notify the members yourself, get the vice-chairman to call. And don’t ask her to, tell her to. (She sips her coffee, then goes in for a shock) When did I get to be vice-chairman? Thanks a lot for appointing me, Gloria. No, no, I don’t mind at all. I’ve got the children helping me.
(Next, Greg comes in the kitchen and sees Alice.)
Alice: I was about to issue an all-points bulletin on you.
Greg: All points is right. I must have walked a hundred miles getting these petitions signed. Is Mom home?
Alice: No, she’s still at the woman’s club emergency meeting.
(Greg goes in the refrigerator and takes something out in a doggy bag.)
Greg: Alice, what’s this?
Greg: Leftover what?
Alice: Beats me, it’s been left over so long, I forgot.
(Greg smells it and puts it back. Carol comes in.)
Greg: Hi, Mom.
Alice: How did your meeting go?
Carol (sitting down): Grand, just grand. The women voted unanimously to fight City Hall.
Alice: Then why so gloomy?
Carol: Because they elected me head of the Save Woodland Park committee. Do you realize how much work that means?
Greg: If you didn’t want the job, you shouldn’t have accepted the nomination.
Carol; No way.
Carol: Because I got so carried away by a speech that I made, I volunteered.
Alice (laughing): Congratulations.
Carol (bitterly): Thanks, Alice.
(Meanwhile, Mike is at the office when he comes into Mr. Phillips’ office.)
Mike: You wanted to see me, Mr. Phillips?
Phillips: I certainly did, Mike. You shoot darts?
Mike: Well, I’m no expert.
Phillips: Great for creative thinking. I get some of my best ideas shooting darts. (He misses, then hands a dart to Mike) Try one.
Mike: I’m not very good at it.
Phillips: Oh, go ahead. Try it anyway.
(Mike throws a dart and hits the board.)’
Mike: Oh, it’s just beginner’s luck. Well, I’m sure you didn’t call me in here to throw darts. What’s up?
Phillips: Mike, you’ve always gone all out for this company. I mean, Saturdays, weekends sometimes.
Mike: Well, when emergencies come up.
Phillips: Well, never mind the modesty. So I’m going to show my appreciation on our new contract. I’m going to put you in charge.
Mike: Thanks, Mr. Philips. What’s the project?
Phillips: Our firm finally broke the barrier with the city. We landed our first municipal contract.
Mike: Oh, that’s great.
Phillips: Mmm hmmm, we’re gonna design the new courthouse in the Woodland Park area.
Mike (shocked): The Woodland Park area? The Woodland Park?
Phillips: How many Woodland Parks are there?
Mike: Hmmm, not enough.
Phillips: Mike, you don’t seem too happy about this.
Mike: Happy isn’t the word, Mr. Phillips. Speechless is what I am.
(That evening, Mike spills the bad news to Carol.)
Carol (upset): Mike, you’re kidding. Your firm is tearing down the park?
Mike: Well, Carol, it’s not exactly my firm.
Carol: You work for it. You’re a park wrecker.
Mike: Oh, honey, we don’t wreck. We design and build.
Carol: Yeah, concrete jungles.
Mike: Look Carol, I feel as badly about it as you do, but, I had nothing to do with it. I’m an employee. (He starts holding her) Come on, you can understand that, can’t you?
Carol (morosely): Yeah, I guess so.
Mike: That’s more like it. I hope the kids understand that, too.
(The boys are upstairs in their room discussing the matter.)
Bobby: Benedict Arnold, who’s he?
Peter: He was a traitor.
Greg: Dad’s no traitor.
Bobby: I still don’t get it.
Greg (impatiently): All right, this is the last time I’m going to explain it. Dad’s an architect. The city hired the company he works for to build a new courthouse. They’re gonna build it where the park is, you got it?
Bobby (doubtful): Yeah, got it.
Peter: I don’t see why Dad can’t tell his boss to turn the job down.
Greg: Boy, you sure don’t know anything about big business.
Bobby: Yeah, you don’t know nothing.
(He hits Peter on the stomach. The girls are discussing the situation in their room.)
Marcia: I sure would like to know Dad’s side of this.
Jan: Mom told Alice that if we don’t fight city hall now, we’ll all be living in concrete jungles.
Cindy: What does that mean?
Jan: No more parks.
Marcia: No more green grass, no more flowers and no more trees.
Cindy: Where will they put all the squirrels?
(Next, Mike is talking to Carol, Greg and Marcia. He encourages them and the whole family to continue what they’re doing.)
Mike: Now, let’s get this straight, once and for all. Mr. Phillips employs me, see, he doesn’t employ my family. What you do as private citizens is strictly your own business.
Marcia: Then we can keep up the fight?
Greg: And go ahead and do our own thing?
Carol: Absolutely, even though your father has to do this own thing.
Mike: Right, and your own thing is stopping that courthouse from getting built in Woodland Park. My own thing, business as usual.
Alice: Well, my own thing is getting everybody to the dinner table. We’re having chicken and its own thing is getting fricasseed.
(The next scene has Mike driving to the house and honking for Carol to come join him.)
Carol (coming down the stairs): Well, Alice, how do I look?
Alice: Beautiful. (Carol heads for the door) Just turn on your charm, Mr. Brady. You’re going to take City Hall without firing a shot.
Carol: Oh, don’t worry, Alice, I’ll really pour it on.
Alice: Good luck.
(She leaves, Carol returns in a depressed mood and gives Alice the thumbs down gesture.)
Alice: I’m afraid to ask what happened.
Carol: Well Alice, they served us weak coffee and stale doughnuts and then they threw us to the lions, with a smile of course.
Alice: Oh, of course. You can’t be a politician nowadays without a Permapress smile. What now?
Carol: Well, the handwriting’s on the wall, Alice. When everything’s against you, and all hope is gone, there’s only one thing left to do.
Carol (confidently): Really get in there and fight.
(She puts her arm around Alice and they head to the kitchen. Next, the family room looks like a campaign area, with signs all over. Alice comes in to see Carol.)
Alice: Can you use some more sandwiches, Mrs. Brady?
Carol: Oh, thanks Alice. Hey girls, (to her friends) Hey girls, more sandwiches. Just dig in, okay.
(The phone rings.)
Alice (answering): Save Woodland Park, it’s for the birds. (Pause) Oh, yes, Mrs. Burns, okay. Right away, hmm. Uh, Peter, Peter, precinct three needs more petitions and more handbills, okay?
Peter: Okay. (to Carol) Mom, I thought of a new slogan.
Peter: Mother Nature’s still alive and living in Woodland Park.
Carol: Peter, that’s great.
(Greg runs in.)
Greg: Look, Mom, Mr. Clinton agreed to run off as many as these bumper stickers as we need, free.
Carol: Hey, we’ll put them on every bumper in this town.
Greg: Including the mayor’s.
Bobby: Hey, Mom, we made a new sign.
Cindy: How do you like it?
Carol: Oh, I think it’s beautiful.
Jan: S.O.P. What does that mean?
Bobby: Save our park, S.O.P.
Carol: Sure, silly. (The phone rings and Carol answers it) Save Woodland Park. (Pause) Hey, Rhonda, that’s great. You bet. We’ll be there in full strength. (to her friends) Hey girls, we put our first press conference set, and guess what. It’s going to be held smack dab on the front steps of City Hall.
(The kids cheer. We show the family and a group of others on a protest march, while they’re playing patriotic music. Mr. Phillips storms into Mike’s office.)
Mike: Yes, Mr. Phillips.
Phillips: I just came from City Hall. It’s virtually under siege.
Mike: Siege, under siege?
Phillips: There’s a whole mass of people milling around, holding a press conference, and they’re saying some pretty nasty things about leveling parks and building courthouses.
Mike: Mr. Phillips, that’s democracy at work. It’s free speech.
Phillips (bitterly): Seven of them are named Brady.
Mike: Well, look, Mr. Phillips, Woodland park is right near our home.
Phillips: Mike, your family is jeopardizing to our contract with the city, and that contract is awfully important to this firm.
Mike: Woodland Park is very important to my family.
Phillips: Mike, let me put it this way. What’s important to you? Your job for instance? I mean, how am I going to explain your position to my board of directors?
Mike: Meaning what, Mr. Phillips?
Phillips: Meaning DO SOMETHING ABOUT YOUR FAMILY, PLEASE!
(Mr. Philips storms out of the office, leaving Mike to ponder how to remedy the situation as the scene fades.)
(The next scene has Mike coming home, extremely upset over the situation.)
Carol: Oh hi, honey.
Mike: Hello, sweetheart.
(He kisses her. Carol notices his somber mood.)
Carol: What’s wrong?
(Mike groans as he puts his briefcase down.)
Mike: I don’t like ultimatums no matter how nicely they’re put.
Carol: Ultimatums, what about?
(Mike walks up the stairs as Cindy and Peter come down, with Peter holding his sign.)
Cindy: We had a press conference.
Mike: Yeah, I know.
Peter: Hey Dad, how do you like my sign?
Mike: Just fine, Peter.
(He walks by them angrily.)
Peter (to Carol): What’s wrong with Dad?
Cindy: Is he sick?
Carol: Well, your father’s got something on his mind, and, Alice has got dinner on the stove so let’s wash up.
(She sends them upstairs and goes out to the kitchen to see Alice.)
Carol: Anything I can do, Alice?
Alice: Not a thing, Mrs. Brady.
Carol (peeking in the pot): Mmm, that should help.
Alice: Help what?
Carol: Mr. Brady’s disposition. He’s pretty upset about something at the office.
Alice: Well, there’s nothing like food to take your mind off your troubles. If your trouble isn’t heartburn, that is.
(Greg is in the family room reading. Mr. Phillips calls and Carol answers.)
Carol: I’ll get it, Alice. (She picks up the phone) Hello.
Phillips: Hello, Mrs. Brady. This is Harry Phillips.
Carol: Hello Mr. Phillips. I’ll get Mike for you.
Phillips: No, no, no, wait a minute. It’s you I want to talk to. I guess Mike’s told you all about it.
Carol: All about it?
Phillips: I wanted to give you my side of it. I regret the stand I had to take with Mike today, but, I do have a business to run.
Carol: Well, Mr. Phillips…
Phillips: I know you’ll do the right thing, Mrs. Brady. So you just stop bothering City Hall with your women’s club and we’ll forget what I said about Mike’s job.
Carol: Oh, I see. Well, thank you for calling, Mr. Philips. (She hangs up) So that’s what bothering Mike, Woodland Park or his job.
(Carol goes into Mike’s office, where he is working on a design.)
Carol: How goes it, honey?
Mike: Oh, just fine, sweetheart.
Carol: Mike, I’ve been thinking, it seems so futile to fight City Hall and, well, I think I’m going to give it up.
Mike (looking up): Give it up, hey, that doesn’t sound like the Joan the Arc of Woodland Park I know. Why the sudden switch?
Carol: Well, it’s such a big deal, you know. They’re a bunch of tough, battle scarred politicians and we’re just a bunch of naïve rookies.
Mike: Well, I’ll tell you, I’ll take a beautiful blonde rookie over a tough old politician any day.
(They hug and kiss. Greg comes in.)
Greg (knocking): Dad.
Mike: Will you cool it while I’m through smooching with my blonde rookie here?
Mike: What is it, son?
Greg: Well, us kids have been thinking and we decided that Woodland Park just isn’t worth fighting for.
Mike (shocked): What?
Greg: We can find another place to play. Besides, it’s too much work keeping the park clean.
Mike (suspicious): Okay you two, what gives?
Mike: Yeah, it doesn’t take a Jack Frost to recognize a snow job. Come on, come on, come on.
Greg: Well, I overheard Mom talking to your boss.
Carol: Mr. Phillips called.
Mike: He called you?
Carol: Well, he wanted to explain things.
Mike: Now, wait a minute. Wait a minute.
Carol (impatiently): Well, I know, I know, from his point of view.
Mike: I know, but let’s remember my point of view. Now look, we made a deal. You do your thing, I do mine. Nothing’s changed. Woodland Park was worth fighting for, it’s worth fighting for now. You want to fight City Hall or you wanna fight me?
Greg: City Hall, and we better hit the pavement with those petitions again.
(He leaves the den.)
Carol: What if you lose your job?
Mike: Well honey, the only thing we have to fear is the unemployment office.
Carol: I love you.
(They kiss. Alice is outside a house with Marcia, Bobby and Cindy.)
Alice: Marcia, you take that house over there. We’ll try here, okay.
Marcia: Okay, be right back.
Bobby: Can we do this one ourselves, Alice?
Alice: Oh, okay, I’ll wait right here.
(They walk up to the door and ring the bell. A man comes out.)
Man: What do you want?
Bobby: Will you please sign a petition, mister?
Cindy: To save Woodland Park.
Man: Save it from what?
Bobby: They want to put up a crummy old building.
Cindy: And it’s the only park left where us kids can play.
Bobby: Mom says it belongs to the people.
(The man bitterly shakes his head no.)
Man: You radicals sure start young.
(He goes inside and closes the door.)
Cindy: What’s a radical?
Bobby (shrugging): I guess it’s somebody who likes to play in parks.
(They walk over to Alice.)
Cindy: He wouldn’t sign, Alice.
Alice: Yeah, I heard. (She takes Cindy’s petition) Here, let me have a try. You two go and join Marcia, okay?
(Alice goes up to the door and rings the bell.)
Alice: Hi there. Is the lady of the house at home?
Man: Well, there ain’t no lady of the house.
Alice: You mean a big, strong, handsome man like you isn’t married?
Man: Well, maybe it’s that I ain’t met Miss Right yet.
Alice: Well, if you were married, and if you had kids, I can tell that you’re the kind of sensitive, intelligent guy that would want them to have a safe place to play, right?
Man: You sure got me pegged, sister. (He checks her over) Say, uh, I don’t see no ring on that finger, either.
Alice: No, they just call me Alice Available. (They both laugh again) Would you like to sign a petition to save a park for kids?
Man: Oh, sure. (He takes the paper and signs) Say, uh, what are you doing tonight, cutie?
Alice: Well, I just thought I’d play it by ear.
Man: What do you say we get together, you know, find some real romantic spot, like, my place? Get it?
Alice: Do I ever. (He hands the petition back after signing) Zip code. (He writes it down) Why don’t you get a couple of big juicy steaks, a bottle of champagne, couple of candles for the table, got the picture?
Man (handing back the petition): I got it.
Alice: And my boyfriend and I will be over to eat it.
(She walks away and the man realizes he’d been had.)
(Next, Peter and Jan are racing through the kitchen with signs. Alice slows them down.)
Alice: Hold it!
Peter: We’ll be late, Alice.
Jan: We’re on picket duty from 4 to 5 on City Hall.
Alice: Well, your mother called from the combat zone. There’s been a change in strategy.
Jan: What kind of change?
Alice: You’re on park duty. Your brothers and sisters are over there right now cleaning it up.
Jan: What’s the use of keeping it clean if we might lose it?
Alice: That’s the wrong attitude. You got to stay confident. And remember what John Paul Jones always said when things looked bad?
Alice: Well, I don’t remember exactly, but, it worked every time.
Peter: I remember what he said. I have not yet begun to fight.
Alice: Right, that’s it, and that’s the spirit. Okay kids, let’s go, hup 2,3,4, hup.
(The next scene has Carol laying on the family room couch with Alice putting pillows underneath her feet.)
Alice: Oh, that’s a couple of picket weary dogs you got there, Mrs. Brady.
Carol: Oh, Alice, I bet if I put them in water, they’d steam. Are the kids over at the park?
Alice: Yeah, they’re cleaning it up.
Carol: I hope we’re doing the right thing, Alice.
Alice: I know what you mean, Mrs. Brady, but that’s the way Mr. Brady wants it.
Mike (walking in): Exactly the way.
Carol: Oh, hi dear, I didn’t hear you come in.
Alice: I’ll see about dinner.
(She goes to the kitchen.)
Mike: Well, how’s my little wife, the picket?
(He reaches down and kisses her.)
Carol: Worried. How did it go today?
Mike: Oh, fine. Just fine.
Carol: Well, didn’t Mr. Phillips say anything?
Mike: No, not a word. Not a single word.
Mike: He was out all day.
Carol: Oh, Mike. Well, maybe he’ll change his mind.
Mike: Why? He thinks he’s right.
Carol: Well, I think he’s wrong.
(Greg, Cindy and Peter come in.)
Peter: We cleaned up the park.
Greg: Dad, will you drive us over to the dump so we can unload all the stuff we collected?
Cindy: It’s outside in bags.
Mike: Okay, give me a minute to change me duds.
(He gets up to go upstairs.)
Cindy: Daddy, can I go with you? I love dumps. They’re nice and messy.
(Mike leaves with the kids. We show them returning home.)
Carol: Hi kids, hi honey. Perfect timing. Dinner’s almost ready, so hurry up and wash up.
Mike (going up to Carol): Hi, honey.
Carol: Oh, hi dear.
(He kisses her.)
Mike: Listen, I got more important things to do right now than eat. Okay?
Carol: What’s up?
Mike: I think, I think I got the answer to the Woodland Park problem.
Carol: Oh honey, that’s wonderful.
Mike: Yeah, yeah, I’ll be in my den.
Carol: Well, what about dinner?
Mike: Keep it warm. I’ll have it for breakfast.
(We see Mike hard at work in his den working on some designs to move the courthouse to the City Dump. Afterwards, he shows his plans to Mr. Philips at the office.)
Mike: The city dump property is a perfect site for the courthouse, Mr. Philips. With this new freeway section open, it has easier access than Woodland Park, and better working facilities.
Phillips: And you say the costs are lower?
Mike: Oh, considerably. Woodland Park has terrific drainage problems and storm drains don’t come cheap.
Phillips: Oh, hardly.
Mike: Well, what do you think?
Phillips: Mike, I think you got a splendid idea here. I’ll submit it to City Hall immediately.
Mike: Think they’ll buy it?
Phillips: They’ll be crazy not to. It’s a bargain. And who doesn’t look for a bargain. Except my wife.
(The next scene has Mike at home in the family room, with Carol, Marcia and Greg.)
Mike: No, that be no problem at all. Oh, I’ll get on it right away. Great, Mr. Phillips. Yeah, I’ll see you in the morning. (He hangs up, to the others) They bought it! The whole idea!
(They cheer and Carol hugs Mike.)
Alice (coming in): What happened?
Carol: Alice, we won!
Greg: We get to keep the park!
(Alice whistles in victory.)
Mike: Listen, that’s not all. City Hall wants me to design the new city courthouse.
Carol (hugging him): Oh, Mike!
Greg: That’s great, Dad!
Carol: Hey, wait a minute. Will Mr. Phillips go along with that?
Mike: Oh, I hate to tell you, you can’t fight City Hall.
Greg: Oh, yes you can Dad, yes you can.
(The scene fades.)
(The final scene has Mike showing Carol his design of the new courthouse.)
Carol: Mike, that courthouse is the most beautiful building I’ve ever seen.
Mike: Oh, you say that about all my buildings.
(Greg comes in in a depressed mood.)
Greg: Hi, Dad.
Carol: Oh hi, Greg. What’s the matter.
Greg: Guess what?
Greg: They finally decided where to locate the new city dump.
Mike: Oh yeah, where?
Greg: Inside Woodland Park.
Carol (upset): Woodland Park?
Mike: The new dump?
Greg: I just heard it on the news. ( he starts walking away) Oh, and I’ll tell you something else, too.
Carol and Mike: What?
Greg: I’m putting you on.
(They get upset and chase him out of the den. Mike takes his plans to hit him with.)