M*A*S*H (MASH) s11e07 Episode Script

1G23 - Settling Debts

So the priest says, "Oh, my gosh.
I thought it was an altar boy.
" Uh - Did I mention that he had a pet collie? - No, you didn't.
- Oh, dear.
It's much funnier if you know that.
- Maybe.
Good morning.
I bring you samples of what the well-dressed stamp is wearing this year.
From Marvin's House of Mirth.
- Aha.
This must be my Joe Miller jokebook.
- Too late.
You watch it, Colonel.
This book is loaded with snappy comebacks.
Colonel, here's one for you.
- What about that other one? - What other one? Saw one in there with Mildred's handwriting on it.
She always uses that old fountain pen that makes everything look like it was written by a monk.
- There it is! - This is for Captain Pierce.
Pierce? It's got a Hannibal postmark.
It's even the stationery Mildred bought at the Sisters of Mercy tag sale last summer.
Let me see that.
Sorry, sir.
Not unless you've got some I.
That says you're Captain Pierce.
Uh, Colonel.
A couple guys here want to meet you.
Colonel, Lieutenant Pavelich of rear echelon security.
This is Sergeant Lally.
What brings you boys to our duchy? We've had reports of infiltrators in this sector.
So we'll be patrolling the Kwantu Pass for several days.
You can never have too many cops on the beat.
Why don't you stop by my office? We'll go over your map.
There are a couple of roads up there that could send a young jeep to a retirement home.
- Well, I'd appreciate it, sir.
- You look pretty young yourself.
- How long have you had that bar? - Two months, sir.
Holy Joe! What are you doin' this close to the front? Don't they usually start you boys off in the kid gloves battalion? Well, they offered me a desk job in Paris, sir but I asked to go someplace where I could get my hands dirty.
Good for you.
Oh, Sergeant, what do you think the men would say to a nice hot meal? - Great idea, sir.
Might be the last one we get for a while.
- Follow me, Lieutenant.
That guy turned down a job in Paris? I'd give my Left Bank to go there.
- He's no spoiled kid.
- Mmm.
Most of these hotshots come up barkin' orders.
Not this kid.
He takes good care of us.
We take good care of him.
Come on already! It's not every day you get a letter from the boss's wife.
- What does she say? - I'm reading as fast as I can.
The last time I saw handwriting like this was on my diploma.
- It would go faster if you move your lips.
- Oh, how about that? She scrimped and saved and paid off the mortgage on their home six months early.
- "I've been setting aside my egg money each month.
"One day I checked the bankbook, and lo and behold I had enough to buy the whole henhouse.
" That's definitely Mrs.
"I'm enclosing the mortgage "and would like you and everyone who's close to Sherman to give him a surprise mortgage-burning party.
" Oh.
"I'm sorry I can't be there to celebrate with you "but tell Sherman that while you're burning the mortgage I'll burn the free calendar the bank sent us.
" - So when's the fire? - Well, listen, you know, it's gonna take a while.
We gotta find a caterer and make the place cards.
Pierce? - Did you get a letter from my missus? - Well, uh, I don't know.
I got a letter from a Mildred Potter There's only one in Hannibal who writes like a monk.
Now look, if something's wrong, I wanna know about it.
Oh, no, no.
There's nothing wrong at all.
As a matter of fact, you're gonna like it.
Really? Now there's two total strangers sharing secrets with my wife.
And I'm supposed to be tickled pink? All right.
I'll tell you what she said.
- She said, "Don't tell Sherman.
" - And she outranks us by marriage.
Okay, okay.
I can see I'm not gonna get anywhere here without truth serum.
If you fellas don't wanna tell me, there's nothing I can do.
So I'll be shoving off.
We better have this party today before it kills him.
Oh, here.
- There you go, Father.
- Oh.
Thank you.
- Here's two more.
- Mm-hmm.
How much did we take in, Father? - Twenty-seven dollars.
- Oh.
Oh! That's the most I've ever raised in one collection.
You buy the present, I'll buy the booze.
- I think a party with a theme would be really cute.
- Must we? Can't we just hand the poor man the mortgage, let him ignite it and go on about our business? There's an exciting theme: Apathy.
What time shouldn't we be here? Aw, come on, Major.
Didn't your folks do something special when they got their first house? Yes.
Yes, they did.
They fired the entire staff.
How about this? The Potters bought their house in the '30s.
Suppose we all dress up like Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers? Oh, why not dress up like stockbrokers and all jump out of the window? I've got it! Let's give the party in the colonel's tent and the theme will be home away from home.
That's not bad.
For decoration, we could make a little white picket fence.
Of course it won't be complete without a pink flamingo on the lawn.
And Charles are the fix-up committee.
Oh, can't we just hire a decorator? We're gonna have to keep Colonel Potter out of his tent until they're through.
- I'll handle that.
- No offense, Major.
That's gonna require sneakiness and dishonesty, so I'll be your technical adviser.
You two are the distractions committee.
Wait a minute.
If we're decorating the colonel's tent and they're keeping him away from it, we're gonna need a go-between.
I'm good at that.
It's sort of what I do for a living.
We've all got our assignments.
We'll reconvene at 1800 hours.
Remember The fate of the free world rests in your hands.
- Oh, who cares? - We will now leave one by one according to order of departure.
He doesn't take anything seriously.
Father, would you mind hanging on to the mortgage? - I think it might be safer in here.
- Why? - Hey! A surprise inspection? - Oh, uh, hello, fellas.
Uh, Pierce I was just looking for those toenail clippers I lent you last month.
- Starting to slice my sheets.
- You wouldn't lend me the clippers.
- Oh, I guess that's why you didn't return them.
- Colonel, it's not in there.
What isn't? Then where is it? - Where's what? - Don't toy with me! Hunnicutt, how would you feel if Pierce here got a letter from Peg? - Ha! Don't be silly.
Why would Peg write Hawkeye? - Yeah.
- By the way, she says hello.
- Aha.
- You guys are gonna drive me buggy.
- All right.
Look, just for the sake of your sanity, I'll tell you this much Mildred wants to surprise you.
- Surprise me? - Yeah.
It ain't my birthday.
That was last month.
It ain't our anniversary.
That's Groundhog Day.
I picked it so I'd never forget.
You're gonna love it.
That's the same thing she said when she put the leopard skin seat covers on the Hudson.
Never felt safe getting in that car without a whip and a chair.
Yeah, well, maybe she missed out on that one, but this is bigger and better.
Bigger? Better? Answer me this Does it have anything to do with where I'm gonna be living out my retirement years? - Yes.
- No.
You boys wanna confer for a bit? Work out one lie between you? No, actually.
We can stand by either lie.
Well, it doesn't make any difference.
I know what it is.
She's gone ahead and bought the damn houseboat! - The what? - I told her, I don't wanna move to Florida.
Six months in that sun, and I'll be a walking liver spot! - Colonel, it's not - And above all, I don't wanna live on the water.
Nobody over the age of 60 should go to scuba school! Colonel, believe me, it is not a houseboat! We'll just see about that! Well, at least we don't have to buy him a present.
We've already given him apoplexy.
Klinger? Was that the phone ringing? Sorry, sir.
That was just the bell on my typewriter.
Why is it taking so long to get a reply to one lousy telegram? Sir, when the phones to the States go out, everyone sends telegrams.
And asking the bank if your wife bought a boat isn't top priority in the army.
Would be in the navy.
This could be it, sir.
Hello? MASH 4077.
This is he.
It took you long enough.
I know you've got a telegram.
Read it to me! Thank you very much! Bad news, sir? She bought the damn boat! Go ahead, sir.
Get it out of your system! Don't do that, sir! You'll never forgive yourself.
It's lucky for you he was here.
Colonel, you're blowing this out of proportion.
The hell I am! My bank says she withdrew 800 of my hard-earned dollars this month.
That means only one thing She bought the damn boat! - You don't know that.
It could be something else.
- Of course it could.
She could have hired a mermaid to come in once a week and clean up.
Well, I'm not gonna let her get away with it! - Where are you going, sir? - I'm going back to my tent.
I've got a letter to write to my ex-wife.
- You can't go back to your tent.
- Why can't I? - I get so lonely without you.
- Out of my way, Sergeant.
Oh, Colonel.
I'm so glad I found you.
- Well, you're about to lose me.
- He's going back to his tent.
You can't go back to your tent.
This'll only take a minute.
You know all the difficulty we're having rotating our nurses properly? - No.
- Well, I've worked out a solution.
- Can't we do this later? - It'll only take a minute.
As you can see, I'm designating any nurse who works in the O.
For one day as an O.
If there's two days, then she's an O.
The same thing with the lab, except they'll be designated as "L" 1 and "L" 2.
However, by the third day, I have found that the average nurse becomes bored, lackadaisical and totally disinterested.
Therefore, under no circumstances will there ever be an O.
3 or an "L" 3.
Am I going too fast for you? - Stop moving.
It's gonna be crooked.
- Oh, sorry, boss.
You know how hard it is to find skilled labor during wartime.
- Mm-hmm.
- Okay.
What do you think? Oh! You're wasted in medicine.
Your real talent is painting chocolate boxes.
Ooh! I'm sorry, Major.
I didn't see you down there.
- And you never will again.
- Well, here's the cake.
- Oh, it's great! - No, no, no.
In keeping with the motif, I made it in the shape of a house.
I wonder if I should go get the colonel now.
I just passed by his office, and although Major Houlihan is keeping him busy with Plan "A" it is obvious he's getting ants in his pants.
We don't have the booze yet.
Give us 10 minutes, Father.
Come on.
This is so exciting.
Many is the time I've surprised someone in their tent.
But never a man.
Hey, Doc.
What's up, guys? Snipers on a dinner break? Wish they were.
Lieutenant's been hit.
It's nothing serious.
I think it's just a flesh wound.
Well, I can't see much here.
We'll get you inside and shed some light on it.
- Want some help? - No.
Looks like "see Spot run" medicine.
- Anything I can do? - Yeah.
Stick your head in that door and holler for a corpsman.
- Tell him to bring a board.
- Yes, sir.
Why don't you go and get the booze? I'll catch up in about 15 minutes.
- And hold that party till I get there.
- I have to.
You're the only one who looks good in your lampshade.
Looks like you should've taken that desk job in Paris.
French snipers use champagne corks.
Doc, I didn't wanna say somethin' in front of the corporal but when I got into this jeep, I didn't think it was all that serious.
But now I can't move my legs.
So, the P.
1 's will then become the "L" 1 's and the L.
's will become the O.
1 's thus eliminating the dreaded 3's! I look ridiculous in a cabana suit.
- Sir? - Dreaded 3's! I'm with you, Margaret.
Uh, sir.
If you would review these figures.
If you insist, Major.
Uh Now, Colonel, so that you understand everything why don't I review the entire plan? - There's no need for that, Margaret.
I like it.
- Like what? This rotation scheme of yours: O.
1, O.
Eighty-six the dreaded 3's.
- Good piece of thinking.
- It is? Type it up, have it on my desk by morning, and I'll post it in the afternoon.
Now, if you'll excuse me I've gotta go to my tent and get out my poison pen.
Oh, no.
You can't.
I mean, you can't post that yet.
It's just in the rough.
Well, smooth it out.
I trust you.
Very well, sir.
Colonel, you're in luck.
Somehow I've gotten patched through to the operator in Hannibal.
Oh, goody! Mildred's gonna get it now.
Hello? Hello? Hello! Hello? Is this Colonel Sherman T.
Potter? Speaking! And could you talk a little louder? I can barely hear you with all this static on the line.
This is the operator in Hannibal, Missouri.
I will attempt to dial your call now.
Will you please hold the wire? - Isn't B.
Back yet? - He's still out in the yard whitewashing Becky Thatcher.
Oh, dear.
Klinger and Major Houlihan are halfway through Plan "B.
" We can't keep stalling the colonel forever.
Gentlemen, I realize that anticipation is half the fun but I've already had more than my share.
If it's all the same to you, I'm going to start making whoopee a cappella.
We need a doctor here.
- I'll get it, Charles.
You're having too good a time.
- Oh, boy.
- We got our sniper.
- How's Lieutenant Pavelich? He was holding his own when he came in.
If you're gonna be in the neighborhood, you can pay him a visit.
All right.
This isn't too serious.
Let's get him inside.
Can I have a litter here? - How long will you be, Hawkeye? - Just a few minutes.
Don't start without me.
Oh, dear.
We better start cooking up a Plan "C.
" Get him prepped and put him in the O.
We're just gonna take a little pressure off that cord.
Okay, Doc.
- Lieutenant.
- What? What are you guys doing here? Huh, is the food that good? We got the guy that winged you.
All's fair in love and war.
- How you feelin'? - Hey, great.
Huh, I haven't had this much rest since I shipped in.
- I thought this was just "see Spot run" medicine.
- I was wrong.
There's pressure on the spinal cord.
He can't move his legs.
Captains, if this is about the lieutenant we would like to know what's going on.
Yeah, well, uh, we just have to do a little surgery.
For what? He said he feels fine.
Yeah, well, sometimes it's a good idea to get a second opinion.
Doc, this doesn't add up.
Something's wrong with that kid and I want to know.
Chances are he's gonna be fine, but right now, he's lost function in his legs.
- He's paralyzed? - No, not necessarily.
It might just be cord shock, which could go away in a couple of hours.
But what if it doesn't go away? - Just take it easy.
We'll keep you posted.
- Sit tight.
I don't know about you guys, but if the looey can't walk again I'm gonna kill that damn Commie.
I'm sorry, sir.
The line is still busy.
Still busy? Of course it's still busy.
She's yakkin' to Portia Nelson in Florida.
Probably picking out the furniture for the poop deck.
Would you like to hold the wire, and I'll place the call again in a few minutes? Lady, a few more of your "few minutes," and I'm gonna need a shave.
I'm doing the best I can, sir.
Do you want me to place the call? Yes! And what is the name of the party you were calling? Mildred blessed Potter! Klinger, this operator is a mental midget.
Slow as a summertime hound dog, and she's got the voice of a rusty chain saw.
Now you get on the horn with her, and if by some miracle she stumbles onto Mildred Potter, you let me know.
- Very good, sir.
- What are you doing here? Ah.
I wanted to type up the new system.
So I came in for some carbon paper.
- Mine's all crumpled.
- Fine, fine.
- Where are you going? - To my tent.
- You can't.
- Klinger, you won't be lonely now.
Major Houlihan is here.
I've gotta go try to relax.
- Sir, you can't relax now.
- Why not? Because it's not good for you.
At a time like this, you need to release some of that anger and frustration.
- By doing something physical.
- Like what? I know just the thing.
"So, after the man had confessed to a healthy number of indiscretions "the priest finally said, 'My son, you're not confessing you're bragging.
"' "'You're not confessing"' You see, what the parishioner was supposed to Yeah, I get I get it, Father.
I just don't like it.
What's taking so long? Where's Captains Pierce and Hunnicutt? Amazing as it may seem, they have torn themselves away from this bucolic bacchanalia in order to tend to patients.
- Is it anything serious? - No, no.
They said they'd be right back.
Of course, that was some time ago.
You're kidding.
We're down to Plan "C.
" And there's no "D.
" - I better go see what's keeping 'em.
- Oh.
Hey! Look at this, Major.
They got a whole section called "At the Hospital.
" Lieutenant.
How ya doing? I wouldn't try talking to him just now.
He's busy being unconscious.
Oh, B.
, I - Oh, my goodness.
I didn't realize.
- It's all right, Father.
We're taking him to post-op.
Can you hang on for a few more minutes? Well, I'll try, but it won't be easy.
- How's the lieutenant, Doc? - He's doin' okay.
- Is he gonna walk again? - I was able to take the pressure off his spinal cord.
- And there's no visible sign of any damage.
- Is he gonna walk? Look, Sergeant, it's a little early for Doctor, is the lieutenant gonna walk again or not? The best medical opinion I can give you is he might.
- That's all? He might? - It's a lot better than he won't.
Contrary to popular opinion, we're not gods.
We find out about the future the same way everybody else does.
I see.
Nurse, move away from the chair.
- Hey, what do you think you're doing! - My job.
If the lieutenant can't walk out of here, neither does he.
Are you That's murder! If I'd had better aim the first time, then that wouldn't have been murder.
- This is a war, isn't it? - Not in here.
My lieutenant's paralyzed.
And you're protecting the guy that did it.
Now who's the enemy here anyway? Sergeant, put away your gun.
Killing him isn't gonna help me walk again.
Put away your gun.
Don't make me pull rank.
You do everything you can for him.
- How's Plan "C" going? - Look for yourself.
- Nice try, Margaret, but it ain't workin'.
- Oh.
- Now I'm angry and sweaty.
- Aw.
- I'm going to my tent and towel down.
- Uh No, sir, wait.
Before you do that, I just had another thought about my nurses' rotation plan.
Rotate it! But, Colonel, the operator said that call could come through any minute.
Then you get in there and sit on that phone.
And now, if you'll excuse me, I am going into my tent which is, after all, my home.
The only one I have that doesn't float.
Surprise! - Surprise what? - Surprise this! - You are the proud owner of your own house.
- And not the one with an anchor.
My mortgage.
This is what Mildred sent you? Well, I guess the cat's out of the bag now.
"Paid in full"? How on earth did she do it six months early? Well, I believe she wrote in her letter that she saved the egg money.
Well, I'll be.
And to think I got nervous when Mildred opened a charge account at the pharmacy.
- Look at what you folks did.
- Yeah.
- Almost like the real thing.
- We wanted it to look just like the Potter house.
Well, to tell the truth, it doesn't.
Mildred's been after me for years to build one of them.
But I like a fence that you can sit on without getting a perforated carcass.
If you don't beat all.
Colonel, on behalf of those of us assembled and those of us who are falling apart We'd like to present you with a little something to keep the home fires burning.
It's also suitable for cigars, cigarettes and tax returns.
Oh, gosh.
It's lovely.
It was all Mildred's idea.
That sweet petunia.
You know, she was the one who wanted to buy a home in the first place.
I said, "What for? There's some fine housing for rent right here on the base.
" But she said she was tired of livin' like a gypsy.
Wanted a place where she could put a nail in a wall anywhere she damn well liked.
Well It took 20 years.
But we got it.
Thanks, Mildred.
If anyone says there's a sweeter woman in the world I wouldn't believe 'em for a minute.
That is the most beautiful thing I have ever heard in my life.
Well, Colonel, good night and congra tulations.
Thank you, Margaret.
Thanks for everything.
- What do you say we do this again in 20 years? - Okay.
Let's make it 19.
That's when mine's paid off.
Unless you got a letter from Peg.
- Good night, fellas.
- Oh, here's what I did wrong.
I forgot to mention that when the woman walked into the bar she had a duck on her head.
- Ah, now it all falls into place.
- Kinda cute, isn't it? - Yeah.
Good night, Padre.
- Good night.
- Good night, sir.
- Klinger, first thing tomorrow, place a call to Mildred.
- A real one this time.
- Consider it dialed, sir.
- Good night, son.
- Good night.

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