SNL Transcripts: Buck Henry: 05/21/77: How Your Children Grow



 Saturday Night Live Transcripts


  Season 2: Episode 22






76v: Buck Henry / Jennifer Warnes, Kenny Vance

How Your Children Grow

…..Jane Curtin
Dr. Richard Dalton…..Buck Henry
Francine…..Gilda Radner
Assistant…..Laraine Newman

[ open on title card ] [ dissolve to Jane Curtin ]

Jane Curtin: Good evening, and welcome to “How Your Children Grow”. My guest tonight is one of America’s foremost behavioral scientists, who’s here to discuss his research on problems in learning difficulties. His name is Dr. Richard Dalton. Welcome.

Dr. Richard Dalton: Thank you,

Francine: [ drawing each symbol with her fingers ] Comma!

Dr. Richard Dalton: Jane.

Francine: Period!

Dr. Richard Dalton: It’s very nice to be here!

Francine: Exclamation point!

[ the assistant on the far end rings a bell in her hand, then points her thumb toward Francine, who promptly hands Jane a cookie ]

Jane Curtin: Thank you. [ she chuckles and bites into the cookie ] Dr. Dalton, when did you first become involved with your work with the handicapped?

Dr. Richard Dalton: About twelve —

Francine: Dash!

Dr. Richard Dalton: thirteen years ago.

Francine: Period!

Dr. Richard Dalton: I was fresh out of college

Francine: Parentheses!

Dr. Richard Dalton: (I went to Harvard)

Francine: Closed parentheses!

Dr. Richard Dalton: where I got a phD.

Francine: Period!

Dr. Richard Dalton: in Speech Therapy.

Francine: Period!

[ the assistant on the far end rings a bell in her hand, then points her thumb toward Francine, who promptly hands Jane a cookie ]

Jane Curtin: Thank you. [ she bites into the cookie ] Why did you choose this field, sir?

Dr. Richard Dalton: Why?

Francine: Question mark!

Dr. Richard Dalton: I guess because it’s so…

Francine: Dot-dot-dot!

Dr. Richard Dalton: damn rewarding.

Francine: Period!

Dr. Richard Dalton: Years ago, Jane —

Francine: Dash!

Dr. Richard Dalton: my father told me that

Francine: Quotation mark!

Dr. Richard Dalton: “if I could just help one person in the world,

Francine: Comma!

Dr. Richard Dalton: then surely I would be looked upon favorably by the Lord!”

Francine: Exclamation point! Closed quotation!

[ the assistant on the far end rings a bell in her hand, then points her thumb toward Francine, who promptly hands Jane a cookie ]

Jane Curtin: Thank you. [ she bites into the cookie ] Your father sounds like a wise man. Is he still alive?

Dr. Richard Dalton: No, Jane…

Francine: Dot-dot-dot!

Dr. Richard Dalton: he had a tumor —

Francine: Dash!

Dr. Richard Dalton: the doctors removed half his colon;

Francine: Semi-colon!

Dr. Richard Dalton: before he lapsed into a coma,

Francine: Comma!

Dr. Richard Dalton: and then died.

Francine: Period!

[ the assistant on the far end rings a bell in her hand, then points her thumb toward Francine, who promptly hands Jane a cookie ]

Jane Curtin: Thank you. [ she bites into the cookie ] Dr. Dalton, what causes learning disabilities?

Dr. Richard Dalton: It’s really hard to say, Jane —

Francine: Dash!

Dr. Richard Dalton: we’re still learning about it with hopes that determining that cause will give us insights into treatment.

Francine: Period!

[ the assistant on the far end rings a bell in her hand, then points her thumb toward Francine, who promptly hands Jane a cookie ]cThank you. [ she bites into the cookie ] We’ve read that many people who’ve worked in your field are assisted by people who indeed, themselves, have similar problems. It makes them more empathetic. Are these your assistants?

Dr. Richard Dalton: Yes, they are.

Francine: Period!

Dr. Richard Dalton: Two years ago, I was at a party at my friend’s house.

Francine: Period!

Dr. Richard Dalton: I saw Francine just sitting there;

Francine: Semi-colon!

Dr. Richard Dalton: and punctuating!

Francine: Exclamation point!

Dr. Richard Dalton: Just sitting there —

Francine: Dash!

Dr. Richard Dalton: saying words like:

Francine: Colon!

Dr. Richard Dalton: period,

Francine: Comma!

Dr. Richard Dalton: colon,

Francine: Comma!

Dr. Richard Dalton: exclamation point,

Francine: Comma!

Dr. Richard Dalton: and,

Francine: Optional comma!

Dr. Richard Dalton: dash.

Francine: Period!

Dr. Richard Dalton: I hired her on the spot.

Francine: Period!

[ the assistant on the far end rings a bell in her hand, then points her thumb toward Francine, who promptly hands Jane a cookie ]

Jane Curtin: Very interesting. And your other assistant, what type of problem does she have?

Dr. Richard Dalton: None that we can determine.

Francine: Period!

Dr. Richard Dalton: As far as we know —

Francine: Dash!

Dr. Richard Dalton: She’s just some dumbo who likes th ring a bell and point to her right.

Francine: Period.

[ the assistant on the far end rings a bell in her hand, then points her thumb toward Francine, who promptly hands Jane a cookie ]

Jane Curtin: Thank you. [ she bites into the cookie ] Just how do these assistants help you in your research, Doctor?

Dr. Richard Dalton: They have helped me prove all of my theorums, except for one —

Francine: Dash!

Dr. Richard Dalton: which we’re still working on.

Francine: Period!

[ the assistant on the far end rings a bell in her hand, then points her thumb toward Francine, who promptly hands Jane a cookie ]

Jane Curtin: Thank you. [ she bites into the cookie ] Which one is that?

Dr. Richard Dalton: My attempt to disprove the validity of the conditioned reflexes described by Pavlov, whose dogs were taught to salivate at the sound of a bell.

Francine: Period![ the assistant on the far end rings a bell in her hand, then points her thumb toward Francine, who doesn’t give Jane a cookie ]

Jane Curtin: [ lightly salivating ] Well, good luck with it! And I’ve always questioned the man myself! [ she chuckles nervously ]

Dr. Richard Dalton: Thank you very much,

Francine: Comma!

Dr. Richard Dalton: Jane.

Francine: Period!

[ the assistant on the far end rings a bell in her hand, then points her thumb toward Francine, who doesn’t give Jane a cookie ]

Jane Curtin: [ salivating more wildly, with her hand extended ] Thank you for joining us. Uh — [ she reaches over and grabs the basket of cookies ] Good night, and tune in next week!

[ dissolve to title card ] [ fade ]

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