SNL Transcripts: Buck Henry: 01/17/76: Auto Mechanic Bedtime Stories


 Saturday Night Live Transcripts

  Season 1: Episode 10

75j: Buck Henry / Bill Withers, Toni Basil, The Blues Brothers

Auto Mechanic Bedtime Stories

Mother … Jane Curtin
Father … Dan Aykroyd
Debbie … Gilda Radner

[In a living room at bedtime, a little girl namedDebbie, wearing pajamas, listens intently as hermother reads aloud from a children’s book:]

Mother: “… said Pilot Porcupine as he skillfully seta northerly course. As they climbed higher and higher,the passengers could see the–“

Father: [wearing mechanic’s overalls, enters, removeshis cap and sighs] Hi.

Mother: Oh, hi, honey.

[Father gives mother a kiss and tosses his cap aside,clearly exhausted from a long day at work.]

Debbie: Hi, Daddy!

Mother: [to father] Hey, sweetheart, I have to go topottery class and catch up on my glazing. Will you putDebbie to bed?

Father: Yeah, okay.

Mother: Oh, thanks. [to Debbie] Goodbye, sweetie.

Debbie: Bye, Mom.

Father: Take the wagon, okay, honey?

Mother: Okay.

[Mother exits as father, groaning and stretching histired limbs, collapses onto the sofa.]

Debbie: [enthusiastically joins father on the sofa]Daddy! Could – could you tell me a story before I goto bed?

Father: [wearily dismissive] I don’t know any stories,Debbie. Go on to bed now.

Debbie: Couldn’t you tell me a story about your work?

Father: There’s nothing at the garage that wouldinterest a little girl. Now, go on to bed, okay?[lights a cigarette]

Debbie: No, Daddy, couldn’t you please tell me astory?! I won’t be able to fall asleep! Oh, PLEASE!Oh, PLEASE!

Father: [exasperated] Okay! All right, I got a storyfor ya. [Debbie listens raptly as her father describeshis work as if it were a children’s story] Once upon atime, a guy comes into the shop with a small blockChevy 6. I take a look at it. I say, I know there’ssome tappet knocking here so I pull the valve coveroff, I strip the gasket, and I’m all set to tightendown the rocker arms, and there’s a whole lot o’ oil–

Debbie: Daddy, was there a bear?

Father: No, but a guy was as mad as a bear when I toldhim he was lookin’ at a ring job. You know, it’sexpensive. So he said he didn’t know, so I startedpullin’ the differential out of the tow truck–

Debbie: Was there a tiny dwarf?

Father: Yeah. Yeah, there was a dwarf, right in thehub. So I chased him with a hammer all the way downthe axle and I pulled the hub off and it turned out itwas just a wheel bearing and not the pinion gearlike–

Debbie: And – and – and did ya find any magic beans?

Father: Yeah. Well, there was this one guy, said he’dgive me three hundred and twenty-two magic beans ifI’d, uh, open his ports a bit, uh, blow the engine outto forty thousand over and, uh, bolt on a set o’headers.

Debbie: Was there a witch?

Father: I used the winch to drop a three eighteen intothe old Dodge pick-up, yeah.

Debbie: And did the – did the princess find the frog?

Father: No, but I did — right in the starter drive.Right between the Bendix spring and the armature. So Ipulled out the armature, replaced all the brushes andit run–

Debbie: Did Bambi come out of the forest?

Father: Bambi? Yeah, Bambi came out of the forest,this guy was goin’ about sixty — WHAMMO! — hisradiator, the grill, gone! I had to put it right in.You know how hard it is to replace a radiator on a ’63Chevy? Ya gotta–

Debbie: Did they all get married and live happily everafter?

Father: Well, this guy was married and the bill wasn’ttoo bad. Now go to bed, will ya please?

Debbie: Okay.

[Debbie kisses her father, scurries toward the stairsbut stops and turns.]

Debbie: Daddy?

Father: What do you want now?

Debbie: If you put on new tie rods and king pins, doyou have to do a complete wheel alignment?

Father: Yeah, ya do, usually, yeah.

[Satisfied, Debbie runs upstairs. Father does adelayed double take, amazed that there was somethingat the garage that would interest a little girl …] [pull back to audience wide shot, with SUPER: “Coming Up Next… God Never Meant For Pictures To Fly Through The Air”]

Submitted Anonymously

SNL Transcripts

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Author: Don Roy King

Don Roy King has directed fourteen seasons of Saturday Night Live. That work has earned him ten Emmys and fourteen nominations. Additionally, he has been nominated for fifteen DGA Awards and won in 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020.

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