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Sunday, May 03, 2009

LOU COSTELLO BUYS A COMPUTER


















IF Abbott and Costello were still around today their famous sketch "Who's on first?" might have turned out something like this...

Written by Tom King
(c) 2004, 2009 Flint, TX

ABBOTT: Super Duper Computer store. Can I help you?
COSTELLO: Thanks. I'm setting up an office in my den and I'm thinking about buying a computer.
ABBOTT: Mac?
COSTELLO: No, the name's Lou.
ABBOTT: Your computer?
COSTELLO: I don't own a computer. I want to buy one.
ABBOTT: Mac?
COSTELLO: I told you, my name's Lou.
ABBOTT: What about Windows?
COSTELLO: Why? Will it get stuffy in here?
ABBOTT: Do you want a computer with Windows?
COSTELLO: I don't know. What will I see when I look in the windows?
ABBOTT: Wallpaper.
COSTELLO: What if I don't like wallpaper?
ABBOTT: Just change it.
COSTELLO: Isn't that expensive?
ABBOTT: No, it's free with Windows.
COSTELLO: I have to buy the Windows to get the wallpaper.
ABBOTT: It's free if you buy the computer.
COSTELLO: They give you windows for your office if you buy a computer.
ABBOTT: Certainly!
COSTELLO: Never mind the windows. I need a computer and software.
ABBOTT: Software for Windows?
COSTELLO: No. On the computer! I need something I can use to write proposals, track expenses and run my business. What have you got?
ABBOTT: Office.
COSTELLO: Yeah, for my office. Can you recommend anything?
ABBOTT: I just did.
COSTELLO: You just did what?
ABBOTT: Recommend something.
COSTELLO: You recommended something?
ABBOTT: Yes.
COSTELLO: For my office?
ABBOTT: Yes.
COSTELLO: OK, what did you recommend for my office?
ABBOTT: Office.
COSTELLO: Yes, for my office!
ABBOTT: I recommend Office with Windows.
COSTELLO: I already have an office with windows! OK, lets just say I'm sitting at my computer and I want to type a proposal. What do I need?
ABBOTT: Word.
COSTELLO: What word?
ABBOTT: Word in Office.
COSTELLO: The only word in office is office.
ABBOTT: The Word in Office for Windows.
COSTELLO: Which word in office for windows?
ABBOTT: The Word you get when you click the blue "W".
COSTELLO: I'm going to click your blue "w" if you don't start with some straight answers. OK, forget that. Can I watch movies on the Internet?
ABBOTT: Yes, you want Real.
COSTELLO: Sure I may want to watch a real one, maybe a cartoon. What I watch is none of your business. Just tell me what I need!
ABBOTT: Real.
COSTELLO: Well, I don’t want a fake one!
ABBOTT: Of course.
COSTELLO: So what do I get?
ABBOTT: Real Player.
COSTELLO: Yes, I want a Real Player.
ABBOTT: And you’ll have one
COSTELLO: A Real Player?
ABBOTT: Certainly.
COSTELLO: OK, I'm at my computer and I want to watch a movie. What do I do?
ABBOTT: You click the blue "r".
COSTELLO: I click the blue what?
ABBOTT: The blue "r".
COSTELLO: The blue “r” what?
ABBOTT: Just the blue “r”
COSTELLO: The blue “r” what?
ABBOTT: The blue “r” nothing.
COSTELLO: If the blue “r” nothing, how do I watch the movie?
ABBOTT: You click the blue “r”
COSTELLO: Is that different from the blue w?
ABBOTT: The blue "r" is the Real Player and the blue "W" is Word.
COSTELLO: What word?
ABBOTT: The Word in Office for Windows.
COSTELLO: But there's three words in "office for windows"!
ABBOTT: No, just one. But it's the most popular Word in the world.
COSTELLO: What is?
ABBOTT: Word.
COSTELLO: Word?
ABBOTT: Yes, but to be fair, there aren't many other Words left. Word pretty much wiped out all the other Words out there.
COSTELLO: Word?
ABBOTT: Woooord, dude!
COSTELLO: I don’t know what you’re talking about! What about bookkeeping? You have anything I can track my money with?
ABBOTT: Money.
COSTELLO: That's right. What do you have?
ABBOTT: Money.
COSTELLO: I need money to track my money?
ABBOTT: It comes bundled with your computer
COSTELLO: What's bundled with my computer?
ABBOTT: Money.
COSTELLO: Money comes with my computer?
ABBOTT: Yes. No extra charge.
COSTELLO: I get a bundle of money with my computer? How much?
ABBOTT: One copy.
COSTELLO: Isn't it illegal to copy money?
ABBOTT: Microsoft gave us a license to copy money.
COSTELLO: They can give you a license to copy money?
ABBOTT: Why not? THEY OWN IT!

A FEW DAYS LATER . . .

ABBOTT: Super Duper computer store. Can I help you?
COSTELLO: How do I turn my computer off?
ABBOTT: Click on "START"..
COSTELLO: Now don't you start that again....
ABBOTT: But I thought you wanted to "STOP"
COSTELLO: That's right. This thing has been on for 3 days and I can't find the "STOP" button.
ABBOTT: Click on "START"
COSTELLO: I don't wanna start!
ABBOTT: But you have to click on "START".
COSTELLO: Why do I have to click on "START"?
ABBOTT: So you can stop.....
COSTELLO: So I have to click on "START" to "STOP"
ABBOTT: That's so you can log off.
COSTELLO: I click "START" and then I log off.
ABBOTT: That's right, you log off.
COSTELLO: I log off
ABBOTT: That's right, now go ahead and log off.
COSTELLO; What if I don't have a log. I DON'T EVEN HAVE A FIREPLACE!!!!!
ABBOTT: No, you don't need a log. You just want to get the computer out of Windows
COSTELLO: Which ones?
ABBOTT: Which what?
COSTELLO: Which Windows?
ABBOTT: The only Windows you've got.
COSTELLO: So it doesn't matter which Windows?
ABBOTT: You just want to get out of Windows.

(sound of wood and metal scraping followed by breaking glass)

ABBOTT: Lou, what was that?
COSTELLO: Oh, I threw the computer out the front windows!
ABBOTT: You what?!!!
COSTELLO: You said it didn't matter which windows, so the front windows was closer than the back ones....


*I wrote the original version of this in 2004.  In 2005 it went viral, but after the death of my son in 2006, I lost track of things and didn't realize it was floating around the Internet unattributed till just yesterday (October 2009).  I want to thank everyone who graciously added attribution and a link to my website to the piece. A couple of funny film versions are now on the Internet and I hope they'll drop me a byline so at least I can claim the piece on my resume'.  Having written a couple of other unattributed viral pieces, I'm more careful these days to put my by-line on things.

20 comments:

Karen said...

Thanks for the heads up. I have given you credit for this very funny skit.

FergatROn said...

Hi Tom,

I've also given you credit. To be honest I noted how sceptical I was, but I gave you a link-back either way. :)

Dave said...

I've added the credit to my blog post as well. Good for you for following up on your copyright.

Tom King said...

Thanks for the copyright notice guys. I'd at least like to be able to claim the piece on my resume'. I've had a couple of things go viral and every time they are uncredited. It's flattering and frustrating at the same time. I appreciate everyone that gave me credit and especially those that gave me a linkback. Thanks!

Tom

Karen Zappavigna Hoogland said...

I love this piece, Tom!

Tom King said...

Thank you Karen. I appreciate the effort you took to say so!

Tom

DK said...

Hey tom that was awesome dude..A Really good skit.Well done Buddy

Lakes Area said...

Hi Tom,

We are a start-up radio theatre troupe. Please contact me re: producing your Abbott and Costello/Computer bit for one of our shows.

Ann
lakesareatheatre@gmail.com

Tom King said...

Ann,

Sent you a copy of the script with the usage requirements. Should be in your e-mail.

Have fun. Send me a recording. I'd love to hear it.

Tom King

generic cialis 20mg said...

Interesting article, added his blog to Favorites

William said...

This is great. I am a Gifted Education teacher at a middle school in Georgia. I have two very dramatic 8th grade male students that would like to use your skit to make a short video to enter in a Media Festival contest. Can we get permission to use it? Thank you very much! William Hooper

william.hooper@sccpss.com

Lauren said...

Hi Tom,
I'm a speech coach and I love this piece, and so do a few of my students. Could they perform it this year for speech competitions?

Lauren.Ressler@sendit.nodak.edu

Tom King said...

For those of you wanting to use this skit for your speech or theater classes, all I ask is that if you make a video for posting anywhere or for public viewing or print copies of the script, please use my copyright info. If you'll contact me at twayneking@gmail.com, I'll e-mail you a Word or PDF (tell me which) copy of the script's latest incarnation with all the copyright stuff included and ready to print.

Being an old used teacher, I appreciate the difficulty of finding free stuff like this. Use it for your class with my blessing. Say, "Hi" to the kids for me.

Tom King

PCBO said...

Tom, would like permission to use the piece for a church variety show on August 28. Thank you!

Tom King said...

PCBO, Just send me an e-mail at twayneking@gmail.com and I'll send you permission and the latest copy of the script in a PDF file.

Anonymous said...

so me and a friend want to do this as a duo speech.... but the problem is that we need an 8 min long speech. this is only about 5min long; is this the longest version because I have googled and googled and this is the longest one. do you possibly have a longer version? if so could you please tell me.... or if not you could make it longer because it looks like it could continue.
thanks.....

Tom King said...

This is the long version. If you add in appropriate sound effects, pauses and don't rush it, you could probably get eight minutes out of it. Lou Costello used to do these great reactions, head jerks, starting to speak and then stopping. Try working, physical comedic bits into the routine. The physical stuff is every bit as important as the patter. Watch several Abbott and Costello movies, particularly notice how Lou uses physical commentary along with the dialogue. Bud Abbott tended to rush things, but Lou had tremendous timing and incredible physical skills for a little fat guy. Use that. Capture his style and you should be able to make 8 minutes out of it. Let the phone ring a few time before you pick it up. Let Lou do a double take when Abbott says something that confuses him. That sort of thing.

Drop me an email me at twayneking@gmail.com and I'll send you the script with permissions to use it (UIL usually requires that). Break a leg guys.


Ridho Sazuke said...

Cool Brother, i like your content

Carol Brayton said...

This is great! I'd love to see this acted out!

I vote for Jimmy Fallon as Abbott!

Tom King said...

There are several versions of it on Youtube. Ed McMahon and some DJ from LA did a version on the radio once. I did another version about Obamacare based on the same theme.