Tim Russell (ANNC): A dark night in a city that knows how to keep its secrets. But on the 12th floor of the Acme building, one man is still trying to find the answers to life's persistent questions: Guy Noir, Private Eye.
Garrison Keillor: It was June, and hot and the air like soup and my ceiling fan wasn't working and then I discovered that if I hit it on the side (BWANG, FAN STARTS AND SLOWLY ACCELS) the fan started up again and the room got cooler. And then she came in and the temperature went way up. (KNOCKS) Yeah, come in, the door's open. (BRISK HEELS)
Sue Scott: Mr. Noir?
GK: She was tall and blonde, and wore a white nurse's uniform and her skirt was so tight I could read the embroidery on her underwear. It said Please Resuscitate.
GK: Come in. Please. Have a seat. Actually, I see you already have one.
SS: Mr. Noir, I don't have a lot of time. I'm a nurse in geriatric care, and I'm on a five-minute break.
SS: And I work in assisted living --wait a minute -- do I know you?
SS: You're not one of my patients?
SS: I'm sorry -- clients--
GK: Not that either.
SS: Well, you look familiar.
GK: It's been a hard winter-- What can I do for you, Miss--
SS: Hatchet. Marilyn Hatchet. It's my father, Mr. Noir. It's Father's Day and I just don't know what to get him.
GK: What kinds of things does he like?
SS: It's hard to tell. With Daddy we just try to maintain respiration. We don't worry about conversation.
GK: What about clothes?
SS: No, mom does all of that. Please. Help me. I gotta run. Are you sure you've never used a walker?
GK: Get outta here.
(RUNNING, DOOR CLOSE. BRIDGE)
GK: So I headed for the Hatchet house and stopped at the Five Spot on the way. (DRUM SOLO, LIGHT, BRUSHES, BEBOP)
TR (JIMMY): Hey, Guy. How's it going?
GK: Not so bad. What's with the live music, Jimmy?
TR (JIMMY): It's a jazz combo.
GK: I see that.
TR (JIMMY): It's called the Brad Davis Trio.
GK: Which one is Brad Davis?
TR (JIMMY): He quit.
GK: Uh huh.
TR (JIMMY): I guess they liked the name. What can I get you?
GK: Glass of water. No ice. From the tap. Tepid.
TR (JIMMY): Ever think of ordering a drink that costs money, Guy?
GK: No. Listen, Jimmy -- what would you give your dad for Father's Day?
TR (JIMMY): Gee, I donno. A tie, I guess. A tie with a big fish painted on it. Why? (BRIDGE)
GK: I drove out to the suburb of Gwendolyn Grove where the Hatchets lived and I knocked on the door and Mrs. Hatchet opened it.
GK: I'm from the Water Tower Society, ma'am. I'm a Jehovah's Witness. Or I think I am, but actually I am feeling conflicted about it and want to talk, and from your beautiful flower garden I sort of gather that you're a nurturing person --
SS: So you've lost your faith?
GK: I don't know.
SS: Or it's just all the doorbell ringing?
GK: I hate to impose on people. Even though I'm bringing them the good news of salvation and it could mean eternal happiness for them, nonetheless, people have other things going on in their lives. Like your husband, for example. What does he like to do in his spare time?
SS: Marvin? I have no idea. He's down in the basement right now.
GK: Got a workshop down there?
SS (MIDWESTERN): Wouldn't know.
GK: So that's his space.
SS: Right. And this is mine. The upstairs.
GK: You talk to him?
SS: Sometimes but never for long.
GK: Okay --
SS: You know, I've always wanted to read The Watchtower if you happen to have a copy on you-- I heard it's quite interesting.
GK: I forgot to bring them. I'm sorry. What about hobbies?
SS: If you have your clipboard, I'd like to sign up for the Watchtower.
GK: I didn't bring the clipboard.
SS: What kind of Jehovah's Witness are you?
GK: I'm a questioning one. I'm just sort of confused right now. Would you mind if I go downstairs and talk to your husband?
SS: Be my guest. And good luck with that.
GK: So I headed downstairs. (HEAVY DOOR OPENS, CREAKING STEPS ECHO) Mr. Hatchet? You down here? (FANTASY MUSIC) It was dim down there. A giant flat-screen tv against one wall, facing a La-Z-Boy recliner. He was watching a nature show about packs of buffalo, racing to the edge of a cliff (SFX)
GK: Mr. Hatchet--
TR (STARTLED): Who are you? (STOP MOVIE SOUNDTRACK)
GK: I'm a Jehovah's Witness. Here taking a survey. If you could have anything you wanted--and God would give it to you. What would you ask for?
TR (MIDWESTERN): What are you doing in my basement?
GK: Just asking for your prayer request--
TR (MIDWESTERN): Do you know anything about buffalo? Fascinating stuff.
GK: Just the usual I guess.
TR (MIDWESTERN): People underestimate them. They have complex feelings.
GK: I imagine they do.
TR (MIDWESTERN): So tell me more about Jehovah's Witnesses. I've always been curious. Is it true that you believe that a remnant of 144,000 will be the only ones taken up to heaven? Seems to me I read that. And are you the ones who wear the special underwear? And the speaking in tongues -- I wouldn't mind hearing that--
GK: Listen, Mr. Hatchet. I'm a rather troubled Jehovah's Witness.
TR: You don't go around in the horse drawn buggies?
GK: No -- we worship God the Father and Sunday is Father's Day. A holy day for us and we like to bring presents to people - so what would you like? Anything?
TR: Well, I read about this new iGod they're putting out.
TR (MIDWESTERN): The people who put out the iPod. It plays sermons and you just delete the parts you don't like.
GK: I don't think that's out yet. What else?
TR (MIDWESTERN): I don't know-- what about cufflinks?
GK: You don't have cufflinks?
TR (MIDWESTERN): They've got new cufflinks out that when you blow on them they turn different colors depending on your mood. Moodlinks.
GK: You want that?
TR: No, maybe not. You know what I really would like--?
GK: No, what?
TR: This is going to sound sort of dumb.
GK: That's okay.
TR: (CLEARS THROAT) I kinda get choked up just thinking about it.
GK: Take your time.
TR: When she was in kindergarten, she brought me home a present -- I'd give anything to have it now but somehow it got lost.
GK: What was that?
TR: She drew an outline of her hand on blue construction paper. (CHOKES UP) Sorry.
GK: That's all right.
TR: And she cut it out (CHOKES UP) -- and she pasted it on white construction paper.
TR: And she painted the fingernails red. (CHOKES UP) It was so beautiful.
GK: (BRIDGE) I called Julie and told her to get some white paper and some blue paper, and some red crayons, and I dropped by the Five Spot where (JAZZ TRIO) the Brad Davis Trio was still playing.
TR (JIMMY): You got kids, Guy?
GK: I don't think so.
TR (JIMMY): Why not?
GK: Women started getting more selective, I think.
TR (JIMMY): Oh yeah?
GK: Yeah. You pay a little dough, you can get pregnant by a guy with a Ph.D.
TR (JIMMY): Guys with Ph.Ds charge women money to -- Oh, you mean sperm banks.
GK: Right. What'd you think I meant?
TR (JIMMY): Never mind. Yeah -- my sister went to a bank and interviewed sixteen guys -- looked at their resumes -- test scores -- family trees -- until she found one with the high IQ she wanted.
GK: So he became the donor, huh?
TR (JIMMY): Actually she fell in love with him and married him.
GK: Ah. So he became a permanent donor.
TR (JIMMY): Yeah.
GK: Any kids yet?
TR (JIMMY): Three.
TR (JIMMY): Really nice kids.
TR (JIMMY): Yeah, very nice.
GK: Well, that's nice. Any of them smart?
TR: They're nice.
GK: Oh. Okay. How old are they?
TR: In their twenties.
GK: I see. They go to college?
TR: Nope. Became musicians.
GK: Oh. Really. You mean--
TR: Yeah. The trio. That's them.
GK: Yeah. Well, it's nice.
TR (ANNC): A dark night in a city that knows how to keep its secrets. But one man is still trying to find the answers to life's persistent questions: Guy Noir, Private Eye.