GE 1997-8 Season 4 Episode 11: Script
Note: this is not a transcript, but a working draft of the script, so there may be differences in the aired version. This is pieced together from a number of files and fragments. A few sections are missing.
PAUL (over theme): Warning all Canadians, attention mes amis, goth-ann-die-inn
Iceland! Warning: this program is not live! My name is Paul Moth.
On today's show: where to go and how to get there; entertainment from
up the tidal ream; and all the gear, to go all the way -- I prepare for
my trip to Oougubomba.
All this for you, with me, on a special pre-taped edition of The Great Eastern,
Newfoundland's Cultural Magazine.
THEME UP AND OUT
PAUL: First up is Wordworks. With me, our den mother of the literary scene,
KATH: Great to be back.
PAUL: You've been busy with your own show, of course, the highly rated Her Nibs.
KATH: Yes it has really worked out well.
PAUL: Considering you developed an audience using this program, I am hardly
surprised. Anyway what rejects from your own show do you have for us today.
PAUL: Just kidding, Kathleen.
KATH: Where you are traveling to Oougubomba I have an advance copy of Harlan
O'Reardigan's much anticipated "Up The Bomba".
PAUL: Advance copy hey, now we contacted the publisher and well ...
KATH: Listeners will probably be familiar with O'Reardigan's earlier book,
"Into the Heart of Gander Bay".
PAUL: I know I am, what a story, O'Reardigan traveled into the upper reaches
of Gander Bay, parts little known to outsiders and lived to tell the tale.
He's made a business of these rough journey's.
KATH: Yes, though one suspects in today's shrinking world he'll soon run out
of zones unknown. Travel writing has evolved ...
PAUL: Indeed Kathleen, forgive my impatience, but could we get to this latest
book. Is there anything I should be worried about? How should I prepare?
KATH: Perhaps I could read from the book?
KATH: This is from the introductory chapter. "Having traveled the Gander
Bay, a four month journey in the country of the high Bomba, posed, I thought,
no particular problem. There are no insatiable blood hungry woolly nippers
in the Bomba, nor would I be taking pliers to extract the spike-like
proboscis of the barking bog stout. This represented , I felt, a great
improvement on life in central Newfoundland.
But the Bomba does present unique problems. There is Booboo virus, latent for
years emerging finally to feast on brain tissue, emptying a man's head of sense
within twenty-four hours of the first symptoms. There are Sac fevers, heating
one's scrotum to 140 degrees and boiling the testes within. There is Hilaria, or
laughing sickness, carried by the Hee Hee fly, the victims literally laughing there
guts out. But it was the sizzler worm that haunted me. Ingested as a microscopic
passengers on food, the worms grow to an inch in the intestines before de-camping
and establishing a colony on the fundament, where they begin their devilish project
in earnest. The sensation is likened to the barbecuing of a thousand, tiny red-hot
chilis on the delicate tissue. No amount of scratching or bathing or application
of salves, ointments and unctions can address the burning itch. Men have been
known to take their own lives."
PAUL: You know Kathleen, I've been through a lot in my time, I don't scare easily.
KATH: Well if Harlan's account is at all accurate you'll need all the courage
you can muster.
PAUL: And you know I've been up Gander Bay and I didn't find it all that bad.
KATH: Right up Gander Bay?
PAUL: I'm not foolish, I've been on the highway up there. Now this "advance
copy" will you be needing ...
KATH: It's yours. There are some great maps.
sfx: Paul leafing through book.
PAUL: Awww yes, look at this ... wow there are still uncharted regions.
KATH: The Colonial Cartographic Survey sent numerous teams up there but ...
PAUL: But what?
KATH: They never returned.
PAUL: Boy look at these pictures.
KATH: That's during the independence movement. Those poor souls are Jowls and
Cavalancers sent in to put down the rebellion.
PAUL: Very harsh treatment don't you think. I mean what did we do, colonize
the place, burn over vast tracks of forest for betel plantations, make these
people slaves in their own land. It's bad but not reason enough to be
lopping off heads. What became of the bodies?
KATH: Just turn the page.
PAUL: (gasp) Unholy!
KATH: Lets not leave the listeners with the idea that all the pictures are
so horrific. There are beautiful pictures of rain forest. Quite lush.
PAUL: Lush, yeah.
KATH: With the high humidity and temperatures jungle growth can be measured
in hours. This time of the year it hovering around 40 degrees.
PAUL: I'm not really a fan of the heat Kathleen. When I lived in Mexico, I
got this rash, between my ... it was brutal. Do you find it warm in here?
PAUL: Kathleen Hanrahan, great to have you back and thanks for the book.
MUSIC FRENCH CHEF THEME.
BENOIT: Bonjour, I am Chef Paul Benoit of the Hotel Palmer Hotel and hÔts of
Paul's Pot. Please join me this week as we continue our gastronomique
'tour du monde' with a visit to the great tapas bars of Spain.
First stop is Sevilla and the renowned Bodega Torrequemada where we
sample the fiery Patatas Bravas Inquisicion --- I confess, I love the dish.
In Valenthia's Thervetheria Tharagotha a rathion of pethcado con thaltha
proves a thumpthuous thrill. And finally, inevitably, to Madrid and Casa
Almodovar's irresistible chorizo con huevos in cross-dressing.
THEME UP AND OUT.
SFX: PAUL WALKING DOWN STAIRS TO BCN BASEMENT.
PAUL: Time for another journey below, down to the nether reaches, to the
murky depths of this grand old edifice, to the Vault, where Director of Radio,
Ish Lundrigan awaits with archival tape from our station's storied past.
SFX: OPENS DOOR INTO ARCHIVE.
PAUL: How are you, Ish?
PAUL: So, what do you have for us today from your treasure trove of taped time?
ISH: Today, Paul, as you're heading overseas, tape from my only foreign
assignment at the BCN which, coincidentally, was also to Oougubomba.
ISH: Yes, 1946.
PAUL: You covered the Newfoundland defeat in Oougubomba ?
ISH: It was not a defeat, Paul, it was a strategic withdrawal to pave the road
PAUL: Whatever. Pretty hairy assignment, though -- they way combat was fierce.
ISH: I didn't cover the fighting exactly. I mean the news department already
had Arch Pilgrim on the frontlines. No, I was on assignment for Bandstand.
PAUL: BCN Bandstand was in Oougubomba?
ISH: Covering the big variety show that the Brits put on for our boys, in the
darkest days of the war.
PAUL: Britain Overseas, wasn't it?
ISH: That's right, the B.O. Toured all the African colonies. All the greats
were on the bill: Gracie Fields with Geraldo and His Orchestra, Arthur Askey,
George Formby, Reginald Dickson and his Wurlitzer -- they actually had the
Wurlitzer from the Blackpool ballroom on the tour.
PAUL: Sounds like a great show.
ISH: Oh it was amazing, but the surprise hit of the show was a young comedy
troupe calling themselves the Carry On Gang.
PAUL: You're kidding! Not the crowd from that endless series of movies?!
ISH: The same. Sid James as the cockney wanker.
PAUL: Sid James, right.
ISH: Hattie Jakes as the missionary nun.
ISH: Kenneth Williams as the Governor, and Joan Sims as the... ah...
PAUL: As the blonde with the big knockers.
ISH: Paul! She was a talented comedienne. The English Marilyn Monroe.
Anyway, recorded live in front of a packed house of our boys on the base at New Botwood, "Carry On Up the Bomba".
SFX: CLICKS ON TAPE MACHINE. TAPE ROLLS, HANGAR-HALL, OLD USO-TYPE SHOW SOUND.
MUSIC: BAND PLAYS AFRICAN THEME.
SFX: UP CURTAIN. APPLAUSE. KNOCK ON DOOR. DOOR OPENS.
KENNETH: Yes, Sargeant-Major?
ADJUTANT: Mr. Alfie Poachedivory to see you, Governor.
KENNETH: Send him in.
SID: Allo, guv.
KENNETH: Ah, Mr. Poachedivory. How are you enjoying the Bomba so far?
SID: Things are perspiring nicely, thank you. How about yourself, guv ?
KENNETH: Terrible, I'm afraid. The Newfoundland soldiers are insubordinate
and they've botched the campaign.
SID: I know what you mean. These Newfs don't know their Bomba from their elbow.
JOAN: (from offstage) Owwwwwwww! Let me go!
SID: Allo, allo, there's a sight for sore eyes.
SFX: IN MARCHES HATTIE LEADING JOAN BY THE EAR. AUDIENCE WHISTLES LIKE CRAZY.
JOAN: Here, Sister, that hurts.
HATTIE: You haven't seen anything yet.
KENNETH: Hmmm. What's going on here, Sister Mary Castigate?
HATTIE: Your daughter missed school again, and I caught her bathing practically
SID: She's a practical girl, isn't she?
KENNETH: Is this true, snookums?
JOAN: I couldn't resist, Daddie. It's a lovely little hole, Mr. Poachedivory,
you should try it.
SID: I've been meaning to.
HATTIE: She meant the swimming hole.
SID: She's obsessed with holes she is, Guv?
KENNETH: (nasally shocked)
SID: You've been up the Bomba too long, Sister.
SID: I'd take the plunge with you anytime, Snookums; problem is,
I can't swim.
JOAN: That's all right. I've got some things we can float on.
SID: I won't touch that one. Might touch the other one, though.
KENNETH: Snookums, you really must study.
JOAN: I know, Daddy, but it's just too hot.
KENNETH: You've got to keep a stiff upper lip, darling.
GORILLA: (loud growl)
SID: Excuse me -- the old Bomban cuisine.
HATTIE: A gorilla!
SID: Well I may not be the most hansome bloke in the world, but--
KENNETH: No, behind you, a real gorilla!
SID: Allo, guv, you could use a shave.
HATTIE: You beastly man.
SID: I'd be worried about the manly beast if I were you, Sistah.
KENNETH: Whatever you do, don't excite him.
SID: Too late for that, Guv.
KENNETH: (horror and admiration for gorilla's erection) Ohhhhhhh!
GORILLA: (lunges) Aaaargh!
HATTIE: You're a man. Do something.
SID: I don't see the connection.
KENNETH: (calling) Sergeant-Major! Come here at once. Sergeant Major!!
SFX: BIG AUDIENCE LAUGHS, AND ISH TURNS OFF TAPE.
ISH: (killing himself laughing) They don't do it like that anymore.
PAUL: Ya, good comedy ages like vintage wine, doesn't it?
ISH: Oh man, they were good. "I don't see the connection". (another laugh)
PAUL: Excuse me, Ish. It can't have been long after that was recorded
that New Botwood fell to the rebels.
ISH: Shortly after the show. The rebels took advantage of the mayhem
from the cutain calls to overrun the outer perimeter...
PAUL: How'd you make it out?
ISH: The BO's tour manager commandeered every bit of flotsam on the river --
hundreds of dugout canoes, cargo rafts made from giant Kilhooley palms,
anything we could find. I jumped into a Bomban river dory with Joan Sims
and we began stroking our way downstream...
PAUL: That's right, you used to row with the BCN team, didn't you?
ISH: We made for a strange
flotilla. The banks swarmed with rebels and angry boatmen; the shells
were coming down like tropical rain around us, but just when our nerve
began to falter, Geraldo got the boys in the band to unpack their
instruments and strike up a stirring rendition of "Up the Pond", and we
just put our heads down and rode the powerful current to safety,.
PAUL: Ya, right into the fall of Beebopalulah!
ISH: Made it just in time to catch the last plane out of Beebop.
PAUL: Must have been pandemonium.
ISH: Oh, it was. The streets were blocked and, well, here's the way Arch
Pilgrim saw it happen.
SFX: TAPE MACHINE ROLLS. PANIC AT AIRPORT, DISTANT GUN FIRE, DISTANT CANON.
ARCH: It's chaos here at Beebopalulah airport as the last plane prepares to
depart. The final offensive by the rebels, the Oougubomba Freedom Front,
has come to this bitter conclusion. Settlers and natives loyal to the
Newfoundland occupation fear the worst. Reports of a massacre at New Botwood
remain unconfirmed but the crowd is positively hysterical on rumours of an
unholy atrocity. I'm trying to make my way through this crush of humanity.
I see Governor Winterbridge making his way across the tarmac, the Newfoundland
flag under his arm.
SFX: CLOSE EXPLOSION.
ARCH: Dear God, they are shelling the airport this last salvo found its target,
it's too horrible. Ahhh, but there's the Carry On gang, making their way to
the plane -- what fabulous entertainers they are.
SFX: WAVE OF APPLAUSE RIPPLES THROUGH THE MOMENTARILY STILLED PANIC.
PLANE STARTS UP AND BEGINS TO TAXI.
ARCH: But ... but now they are closing the doors to the plane. WAIT! WAIT!
It's taxi-ing down the runway. WAIT! REBELS! The rebels are now at the
airport, they're wielding their machetes, ARGGGGHHHH! For the BCN I'm Arch
Pilgrim in BebopalulaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaH......
PAUL: Poor Arch.
ISH: Won a posthumous Marconi for that broadcast.
PAUL: And a hellish ordeal for you, Ish.
ISH: Well, yes. Wouldn't trade the experience, though. Packed into the cargo
hold of that DC-3 with ... Anyway, a shame the way we ended up in Oougubomba.
Good intentions, but ... things fall apart.
PAUL: Thanks for this, Ish.
ISH: Remember, Paul, you'll be a roving ambassador for the BCN over there, so
keep your nose clean.
PAUL: Nothing to fear there.
ISH: (under breath) And take care of yourself.
PAUL: What was that?
ISH: And we'll see you again soon ... in the Vault.
SFX: ISH CLOSES THE DOOR OF THE VAULT FILING CABINET.
MUSIC: ANITA BEST, "THE SOUP SUPPER".
PAUL : That's Anita Best, with "The Soup Supper in Clattice Harbour" from her
new album "Crosshanded."
Ow ow ow ow ow ow ow ... what's that noise from Newfoundland !
Yes, time to play the only game show worth playing !
Entries from all across our listening band have been pouring in, from all the
upper provinces, and from beyond.
First, let's hear the sound that currently confounds the nation. Hollis
Duffett, fulfill your contractual obligation.
SFX: THE NOISE
Reaching in to the mound of mail, I'll extract an envelope, and well,
actually, it an e-mail, all the way from Toronto, the new multi-city,
and it's from Ken Nelson, and Ken writes:
"Dear Paul Moth, The current noise... (quote, in part,-" -glook-glook-glook glook-")
is clearly the call of a skip to his sweepers, instructing them to refrain from
actually sweeping, but remaining vigilant.
This call is frequently heard off the rock as well, through the dark evenings
of deep winter across the northern rural expanses.
Best Regards, Ken Nelson."
Quite a Canadian guess, there, Ken, but sorry, no, although Newfoundlanders
used to play curling, it's my understanding that the practice was banned here
in `94. The sound therefor is not from the curling rink.
Get your pencil and paper ready, I'm about to give you our mailing address.
But first, Hollis, give us our noise.
SFX: THE NOISE
Have you the answer ?
Send it along to us at the What's That Noise From Newfoundland contest, c/o
the BCN, 342 Duckworth St., St. John's, Nfld., A1C 1H5. Or e-mail us,
An excursion to Oougubomba requires much groundwork. In real time, as you
listen to this broadcast, I am somewhere on the breast of the North Atlantic
aboard the tramp steamer Moira.
But earlier this week, I acquired all necessary requisites. First stop was
the office of Jerome Granger, host of BCN's investigative show "Wearing The
Wire", our man of many microphones.
PAUL: Our microphone man is Jerome Granger, host of Wearing The Wire, BCN's
investigative journal. For reasons that remain contentious in this building,
Jerome has first dibs on the best recording equipment. Jerome.
PAUL: (gloating) As you are no doubt aware, I'm on assignment next week.
JEROME: Yeah, Oougubomba, I've heard. Isn't it rainy season down there?
PAUL: Gee, I don't ....
JEROME: I hear it gets beautiful in a couple of weeks. Now, how may
I be of service?
PAUL: I'll be needing a Krupps-Funkensheit Blitzrecoder 39, a Speer-Mark
1936 Shotgun mic, a Borman 45 hidden omni, a ...
JEROME: Paul, I'm afraid I'm not at liberty to release any of the
JEROME: You're not recording this now, are you, Paul ?
PAUL: Hmmmm ?
SFX: BODY SEARCH
JEROME: Didn't you take out a concealed Munsinger 707 mic a couple months ago ?
PAUL: Hey, Jerome, it's me, Paul.
The new commissioner has been talking with the Korean outfit, Sheate.
We're to put some of their equipment through trials.
PAUL: I don't know .... this is once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. You need
reliable gear. What's wrong with the K-F equipment?
JEROME: That's not the question.
JEROME: What's right with the Sheate equipment, and for whom.
PAUL: You've lost me, Jerome.
JEROME: Anyway, here's a Sheate Expel Recorder.
PAUL: (disappointed) Ohhhh.
JEROME: A Sung-Il 50 hidden microphone ...
PAUL: (Alarmed) That's not a very smooth finish, Jerome. And crimey,
there's a nut sticking out the side of the thing. I don't think so.
JEROME: You can see what we're up against.
JEROME: (losing patience) What is the hidden agenda ? Why suddenly a call
for new recording equipment ? And is it a coincidence that Sheate's
Transmission Array is compatible with the UPB ?
JEROME: The Universal Public Broadcaster!
PAUL: Are they looking for people?
JEROME: (giving up) I don't know, Paul, I don't know.
PAUL: This is a big trip for me, Jerome. I can't use this Sheate stuff.
Come on, give me the Krupps-Funkensheit.
JEROME: I can't.
PAUL: Coooome ooooon, Jerooooome. Pleeeease ?
JEROME: Okay, but you didn't get it from me.
PAUL: Of course not. Anybody asks ? Biggs'll be the fall guy.
PAUL: I am at the giant health complex of St. Finian's Teaching Hospital,
passing through the triple swinging doors, and then, a set of revolving
doors for added security, and into the world-famous Centre for The Study
of Highly Contagious Tropical Diseases. Many people sit around the waiting
area, back, no doubt, from Tropical vacations on the Isle des Berhamas,
or Indosamnesia, carrying unwanted souvenirs - prolific protozoa filling
their blood steam with waste, larva squirming beneath their skin, tiny
sizzler worms barbecuing chilis on their an... Whoaa, there's a condition to miss.
To avoid such discomforts of travel south, I have come here as a precaution to
get my shots. Ah! Here she is, my Saw Bones for the day, Dr. Wanda Mullett.
WAN: Mr. Moth ? Please come in.
PAUL: I'll just take off my trousers ... ah that's better.
WAN: You ... can leave your pants on.
PAUL: Well, where they are off already.
WAN: That's all right. Now, where are you traveling, Mr. Moth ?
PAUL: I'm going to Oougubomba.
WAN: There is an advisory for that area this time of year,
did you know that ?
PAUL: Hmmm ? No, I hadn't heard.
WAN: The rains have just ended. The mosquitoes are out in tremendous
numbers, and the giant sizzler worms are at the peak of their cycle ...
PAUL: Giant ... ?
WAN: There's an outbreak of Booboo virus; it's a Sac Fever endemic
zone, to say nothing of the Heehee flies.
PAUL: Laughing sickness, I've heard.
WAN: Is there anyway you could change your plans ? In three weeks
the river Bomba recedes and it becomes a virtual vacation paradise.
PAUL: Unfortunately my passage on a tramp steamer was booked economy
and it's not refundable.
WAN: Okay, then. You'll require two shots. This first, a wee tiny
injection ... and then this, a great huge injection.
WAN: It's strange how many people are alarmed by the larger of the
syringes, when actually the smaller one is ... well, more difficult.
PAUL: How so?
WAN: Administration is intraocular.
PAUL: In the eye?
WAN: Just look straight ahead, focus on that picture of the black lung
... no, better the healthy lung. Now, try not to blink. Think a happy thought.
PAUL: (heavy breathing)
WAN: (holding him tightly) Steady Paul, here we go. Don't blink !
Don't blink !
PAUL: Where better to get rigged out for my Bomban adventure than the
Newfoundland Army Surplus. The ill fated Newfoundland expeditionary
force, the Jowls and Cavalancers, could be distinguished from other
Newfoundland soldiers by their jungle garb - the vented Newfoundland
tartan pantaloons, the ensign red pith helmets clashing with their
powder blue blazers. The tropical fruits they were called by the other
troops, but they conducted themselves ...
BERK: Hold it right there.
PAUL: Whoooah, jeez Berkley put down the Mauser, it's me Paul.
BERK: Not so quick. If you're Paul Moth ... who won the Boyle Trophy in '39?
PAUL: I don't know.
BERK: Then say your prayers.
SFX: hammer of pistol drawn back
PAUL: St. BONS!
BERK: Captained by Dick Furlong, the sixty-minute man.
PAUL: The Newfoundland Army Surplus is run by Wing Commander Berkley
Regular - retired, host of BCN's Bomb's Away. You gave me a fright Berkley.
BERK: Fifth Columnists, saboteurs, GST auditeurs, can't be too careful.
PAUL: Berkley I'm going up the Bomba next week.
BERK: This time of year!
PAUL: Giant sizzler worms, I know ...
BERK: If you wait three weeks, vacation paradise Man.
PAUL: I can't! I have an economy ticket! Anyway I thought you might
have some surplus Jowls and Cavalancers gear that would come in handy.
BERK: How far up are you going?
PAUL: Dulang-Dulang, maybe even New Botwood.
BERK: Lost some good men in New Botwood.
PAUL: Bit of a blood bath.
BERK: If God was merciful.
PAUL: I don't follow.
BERK: There was talk that .... well the temptations of the Upper Bomba
Paul, a young enlisted man could live a life free of the moral
strictures of Newfoundland, the heat you understand and the ...
pleasures of the flesh...
PAUL: You think they may have ...
BERK: Gone Bomban, yes.
PAUL: Then their descendants might still be up there.
BERK: It is a dark, godless place Paul.
PAUL: You mentioned pleasures of the flesh, what specifically ...
BERK: Now you'll want to be properly equipped.
BERK: These zinc-foil lined briefs are essential.
PAUL: I'm ... a very particular when it comes to undergarments,
sensitive in the ...
BERK: Its because of the sizzler worms.
PAUL: Zinc-lined it is then.
BERK: I'm never without a couple of cyanide capsules. The doubt,
the continual questioning of one's existence, that comes when
you have these tablets aboard ... you take pleasure in the small things.
PAUL: I could never do it.
BERK: Paul, in the High Volta death never comes quickly, let me show
you these photographs, it's a bit of sport ther natives call "the
PAUL: (gasp) Give me the tablets.
BERK: There's the standard Jowls and Cavalancers kit: three condoms,
Bomban-Voltan-Saguanay-English phrase book, anti-fungal spread,
copy of Doyle songbook, ration twine blend tobacco.
(turning very serious)It's not an easy journey Paul.
If you ... make it out alive.
PAUL: (gravely) Yes Berkley?
BERK: (suddenly quite light hearted) Could you pick me up a wheel
of Bomban Chimp Cheese.
BERK: I'm throwing a little cocktail thing ... ah, forget it. Good luck.
PAUL: It's Tuesday morning, on the open ocean. Off the stern bow of the
Motor Vessel Moira, Newfoundland fades from view. Much of what I know
and love is behind me. And there, past the whitecaps and beyond the
scudding of the roiling North Atlantic, lies an adventure, an adventure
that will illuminate in searing profile the philosophy and folly of
Newfoundland's grand colonial experiment.
I don't know if any of you can hear me now, broadcasting to you on the
ship's radio, from the wheelhouse - the curvature of the earth, the
modulation of both frequency and signal, the indigestion that is the
magic of radio - but to you I broadcast my hopes and my fears, impressing
upon you my vigilance over your heritage and your modern utopian concepts
of right and wrong.
I embark upon this journey with some trepidation and much apprehension,
but also with all the resolve, preparations, and defense mechanisms the
late-twentieth century can arm me.
I make this reverse voyage of discovery ... well, for many reasons.
The world is a finite place, it only makes sense that having gone all the
way around it in one direction that we re-trace our steps, seeking reasons
not for going, but for coming, looking not for where we are bound but for
whence we came. My famous rubber-band theory.
What was the whole, disastrous colonial experiment but an attempt to right
the wrongs that had made us flee the oppression of former colonial powers
in the first place ?
Limited success made us think we could do better. The journey from the
Old World to the New had invested us with a perspicacity ... oh, it's, ah,
it's getting a little rough ... ha-wup ... I've, oh my, I've lost my script ...
in fact, phew, I've, ah, I've lost ... phooooo ... the journey from the old
world to the new had given us an insight that our attempt to return to
the old world ... everything is going around ... may god have mercy on our souls !