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The Secret Life of Dogs and Babies

Introduction

In a TV show (based on “Rugrats”) several babies are building a pyramid out of blocks in their playpen. A girl approaches wearing a coat much too big for her.

Bucky: Veronica, what are you doing in Daddy's clothes?

Veronica: Daddy went to the Food Co-op and he left me in charge. Ah, you babies look a little hungry. I better feed you your favorite food: mashed lima beans.  (mean laugh)    She leaves.

Bucky: Lima beans? Yuck! We gotta get out of here before Veronica comes back.

Red Headed Kid: Why, Bucky? I like Lima beans - they make me smelly!

Twin: We can climb up the pyramid.      The twins and Bucky put a board on the pyramid as a bridge to the wall of the playpen. Outside they jump on a dog’s back.

Red Headed Kid: Why not just use the door?      He picks up a plastic yellow key and opens a door in the playpen. He walks out and escapes with the others.

Arthur, Pal, Kate ad D.W. are watching the show from the couch.

Kate: I can’t believe this show. It’s so unrealistic. If my playpen were that easy to escape from, I’d be in Paris by now. And where are the parents?

Pal: I like the one with red hair. He looks like a chew toy.

Kate: Now, Vidiboobies, there was a show with some substance. I wish D.W. still liked it.

Pal: Maybe she does.      He presses a button on the remote. The TV now shows a “Teletubbies” parody.

Red Vidibooby (on TV): Like this insubstantial pageant fade-in, leave not a rack behind.  We are such stuff as dreams are made of and our little life is rounded with a sleep. Stinky Pinky, I am vexed.

Arthur: Oh, come on, D.W.! Not this show.

D.W.: What?? I didn't change it. You probably did. It's just like Love Ducks.

Arthur: The clicker was right next to you. I saw you reaching for it.

D.W.: Why don’t you just admit it, you're a baby show addict.     Pal and Kate watch the older kids. To them their speech sounds like baby talk.

Pal: They're at it again.  

D.W.: Blah blah…

Arthur: Bloo bee blah blah blah! …

Kate: Sometimes I'm very happy I don't understand a word they say.     She and Pal watch the show happily.

Title Card: Pal Searches

Mrs. Read pushes Kate down the street in a stroller while Pal and Arthur walk beside her.

Kate: You see, Pal, the smiling baby in the sun represents our essential unity with nature.

Pal: Fascinating.  (sniffs)    He eats a half-eaten donut from the gutter. Nemo is sitting on a fence.

Nemo: Ah! If it isn't the walking trash can. Tell me, Pal, does Arthur never give you a bath or did you roll in something dead this morning?        Pal tries to run up the fence.

Pal: You want a piece of me, Nemo? Come on! Let's go!  Right here, right now!    Pal jumps into Francine’s arms.

Arthur: Heel, boy, heel!

Francine: You should take that dog to a shrink! He's wacko. Did he scare you, little Nemochka?   She pets him.

Pal: Grr! It’s a good thing your master's here to protect you.

Nemo: Cat's don't have masters. Just good friends.      He licks Francine’s hand.

#

Mrs. Read and the kids stand in the kitchen door where Mr. Read is searching for something. A large cake stands on the table.

Mr. Read: The bride and groom for the top of the cake is gone! Ed Crosswire's niece's wedding is in an hour and I can’t find it anywhere.

Mrs. Read:Check your pockets.      Mr. Read does.

Kate: Something's very wrong with Daddy.

Pal: Do you think he has fleas?

Kate: No, I think he's looking for something. Something that’s supposed to go on top of that white tower.

Arthur: Can't you just buy a new bride and groom?

Mr. Read: Oh no, Ed was very specific. He wanted it to look exactly like his niece and her fiancé. I stayed up all night sculpting them out of marzipan from this photo.

Arthur+Mr.+Mrs. Read: (speak gobbledygook)

Kate sees a statue of a bride and groom under the table next to various farm toys.

Kate: Look! That little statue looks just like those people in the picture.

Pal: No, they don't. The people in the picture are much flatter. (sniffs) And they smell different.

Kate: I’ll bet it's what Daddy's looking for. I'm sure of it.    She crawls towards the table.

Mr. Read: If I don't find that bride and groom fast, I'll never get another Crosswire catering gig again. That's half my business!

Mrs. Read: I'll help you find it after I put Kate upstairs. D.W., come in here and clean up your toys!

Mr. Read: The den! I haven't checked there yet!

Arthur: I’ll check the hall!      Mr. Read and Arthur run out of the room. Just as Kate is about to take the statue, her mom picks her up.

Kate: What?! What’s going on?! Mother, now is not the time for a nap. Father is in trouble and I must help him!

Mrs. Read: Daddy daddy, yoobie-boo, Katie-waitie.     She carries Kate upstairs.

Pal: Goodbye, dearest Kate. I know it shall only be for an hour but it will feel like seven hours to me!

Kate: Pal! You have to get that little statue and give it to Daddy.

Pal: Why?

Kate: I don't know why. I just know it's very important. Promise me, Pal!

Pal: I promise, Kate!

#

Pal runs into the kitchen and sniffs and licks at the statue.

Pal: Ugh! Almond paste. I don't see what the big deal is. I could understand if it was made of, say, bacon! But a promise is a promise.     He is about to take the statue when D.W. takes it.

D.W.: It's not fair! All I do is work in this house. Some of these things aren't even mine!   She tosses the statue inside a toy barn and closes it.

When D.W. goes upstairs, Pal clings onto the barn.

D.W.: Hey! Arthur, your crazy dog is trying to eat my toys!

Arthur: He's just hungry because he hasn't had his breakfast yet.      He picks up Pal and carries him downstairs.

#

Upstairs Kate crawls around in her playpen.

Kate: I wonder what could be so important about that statue. It must do something when it’s put on top of that white tower.

In her imagination, Mr. Read puts the statue on top of the wedding cake at the wedding ceremony. The cake emits pink light and turns the wedding guests into babies.

Wedding Guests: (gasp)    

The fantasy ends.

Kate: And when all the grown-ups are babies again, the wolf shall dwell with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, and there will be peace on earth.     D.W. comes in with the toy barn.

D.W.: That dog eats five breakfasts a day. What do I get? Chores, chores and more chores!

Kate: Hh! Oh, no! The statue! This pen is too high to climb and there's no plastic yellow key! I could try crying. It works for everything else...    (cries)

D.W.: What is it, Kate? Are you hungry? Tired? You wanna see my toys? Okay.     She puts the barn on the ground and gives Kate a lemon in a pajama.

Kate: Larry the Lemon?? I don't want Larry the Lemon!

#

Arthur fills Pal’s dog dish.

Arthur: Dewy canny lovess Chicken Feast.

Pal: Oh… chicken. No. Must...be...strong.      (whines)   He pushes the dish away.

Arthur: Cabby lobie dobie. Pal! Blah bloo blee bloo-blah-bloo. Bacon.      He holds up a slice.

Pal: Bacon…     

Pal sees himself dancing with an anthropomorphic slice of bacon while wearing evening dress.

Pal: (sings:)  “Heaven, I'm in heaven / and my heart beats so that I can hardly speak / and I seem to find the happiness I seek / when I have that bacon in between my cheeks.”

The fantasy ends. Pal is about to eat the bacon.

Kate: Pal! Help! Help!     Pal runs out. Arthur looks surprised and drops the bacon in the dog dish.

#

Upstairs D.W. and Kate are tugging at the statue.

Kate: (cries)

D.W.: No, Kate, that’s too delicate for you to play with. It might break.

Kate: Pal, I've got the statue, but I can't hold on much longer! Give me a hand!    Pal looks at his paw.

Pal: But I don't have one.

Kate: Hgn. Just do something!       Pal tugs at D.W.’s dress.

D.W.: Hey!         She drops the statue. Pal catches it in midair.

Kate: Nice catch, Pal.

Pal: Oh, that was nothing. You know I took second place at the Elwood City fetching competition. Of course it was in the lapdog category, but I think…    Arthur comes in.

Arthur: Hh! Blah bloobie blah!     Pal grabs the statue and runs off.   Pal! Blah-blah bloobie blah.

#

Downstairs Mr. Read is searching behind the couch. Pal drops the statue and touches his leg.

Pal: (whines)

Mr. Read: Not now, Pal.       Pal takes the statue away.

Pal: Hm! That's what you get for being man's best friend.

Arthur comes downstairs just as Pal eats the slice of bacon.

Arthur: No! Pal, you didn’t!

Mr.+Mrs. Read: Didn't what?

Arthur: (gulps)  Eat the bride and groom!

Mr. Read: I'm doomed!

Mrs. Read: You'll just have to tell Ed the truth, dear. I'll come with you.

D.W.: Bloo bloo bad doggy, Pal!

#

Mr. Read puts the wedding cake into the van. Arthur puts a leash on Pal.

Arthur: Come on, boy. Let's go for another walk.  (sniffs)  It might be our last.       Mrs. Read walks by with Kate. Pal follows them.

Kate: Did you give the statue to daddy?

Pal: I tried, but he didn’t notice me. I waited for ten whole seconds!

Kate: Grown-ups are slow, Pal.

Pal: Okay. I'll try again.      He gets the statue from the dog dish and runs back to the van.

Kate: Hurry!      The door on the right side is closed. Pal runs around the van as Mr. Read closes the driver’s door.       I heard the word "Muffy" a couple of times, we might be going to her place.     The van runs off.

#

Pal runs after the van.

Pal: (pants)   Almost there.     The van stops at a red light. Pal’s leash gets stuck on a fence, almost choking him. Nemo sits down on the fence.

Nemo: Well, well, well, what have we here? Poor Pal. All dressed up and no place to go.

Pal: Nemo, you have to help me. I’ll do anything.

Nemo: Hm, let’s see. You could be my scratching post for a week. No, I’d probably catch your mange.    The van drives off.

Pal: Quickly, Nemo.

Nemo: Ha, I’ve got it. Beg!

Pal: (gulps) You’re a cruel beast.       He stands on his hind legs.   (whines)

Nemo: (laughs)  Oh, that’s rich. I love it.        He loosens the leash.

Pal: How do I get to Muffy’s place?

Nemo: Make a left at the bakery smell, a right at the laundry smell, then go straight until you hit the strong scent of new money.

#

A party tent is set up in the Crosswire’s front yard. Mr. Read is talking to Mr. Crosswire.

Mr. Read: You see, Ed, at the last minute I thought we'd try something more... minimal.    Pal reaches the mansion and jumps into the van.

Kate: Pal, I knew you'd make it. Now just throw that little statue up here.    Pal throws the statue on the seat beside Kate. The he jumps beside her.

Pal: Hmm!

Kate: I've only got one shot! This has to be perfect.   She looks at the rear mirror and throws the statue backwards.

Mr. Read picks a rose.

Mr. Read: I mean, who wants little people on a cake when you can have… flowers?

Mrs. Read: We’re sorry, Ed, we know it wasn’t what you expected, but...    She leads him to the back of the van.

Mr. Crosswire: No, it isn't what I expected. It's much better!

#

The wedding guests are having dinner. Pal and Kate sit at a table.

Pal: I'm so glad your mom decided to stay a while. This gristle is divine.    Kate spins her baby bottle looking sad.    Kate, you haven't touched your formula. What's wrong?

Kate: Oh, it's nothing. I just thought that when we put the statue into the tower, everyone would turn into babies. Silly of me, really.

Pal: You know, Kate, they may not look like babies but they are behaving like babies.    Mr. Crosswire dances with maracas.     They’re playing with their toys, they’re acting silly...  They’re even sharing food!     The bride takes the statue of the cake and the groom bites into it.

Groom: Kinda tastes like chicken!

Kate: You're right! They are different. I don't know how they'd survive without us.    She drinks from her bottle. Pal licks her cheek.

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