Willie and Frankie

Willie and Frankie

Frankie … Christopher Guest
Willie … Billy Crystal

[Hallway in an office building at night. Uniformedsecurity guards Willie and Frankie — two workingclass nebbishes with thick New York accents — carryflashlights and walk down the hall testing the knobson the locked office doors.]

Frankie: Hey, Willie.

Willie: Hi, Frankie.

Frankie: How’s the west wing?

Willie: All secure.

Frankie: That’s good.

Willie: You know somethin’, Frank?

Frankie: What?

Willie: I – I – I don’t like bein’ a nightwatchman. There – there’s nobody here.

Frankie: It means we’re doin’ our job, Willie.And doin’ it well.

Willie: Yeah, but I – I – I – I – I liked itbetter when we – when we was messengers, I mean, andthen I – I was out – I was meetin’ people.

Frankie: Like that woman over at Scheidelman’sSuits, right?

Willie: [reluctantly] I dropped her. Yeah, shewas all over me. All over me, she was. I – I – I needroom to breathe.

Frankie: I know, Willie. The stallion needs torun. [Willie nods solemnly in agreement] And runfree.

Willie: [rubs his shoulder in pain] Shoo,boy.

Frankie: What’s the matter?

Willie: Eh, my shoulder hurts. You know – youknow that narrow hallway in the boiler room? The onewith the, uh–?

Frankie: Exposed bolts comin’ out o’ thewall?

Willie: Yeah. Well, every time I walk past it,the bolts dig right into my shoulder. I– It’s verypainful.

Frankie: Boy. You wanna talk about some pain? Ibought one o’ them linoleum knives the other day, youknow?

Willie: With the double edge?

Frankie: Right.

Willie: Yeah?

Frankie: So, I go home, you know, and I spreadmy toes apart and I just start sawing, back and forthand back and forth, you know?

Willie: Mm hmm.

Frankie: And I take a little thing o’ Tobascosauce, you know?

Willie: Yeah.

Frankie: And just dump it on there. Talk abouta hotfoot, mister! Boy, that was rough.

Willie: Yeah, I know what you mean. You know,the other day, I took one o’ them, uh–?

Frankie: Meat thermometers?

Willie: Yeah! And I just shoved it into my ear,you know? As far as it could go, you know? But then Itook one o’ them, uh–?

Frankie: Ball-peen hammers?

Willie: Right. And just whacked it a few timesright in there, you know.

Frankie: Boy, that must smart.

Willie: I know! I HATE when THAThappens.

Frankie: You know what I hate?

Willie: What?

Frankie: I go into the kitchen, I open thedrawer, you know?

Willie: Uh huh?

Frankie: And I take out a, uh–

Willie: Carrot scraper?

Frankie: Right. And I stick it up my nose, youknow, and I’m rootin’ it around, and, you know,gettin’ all the mucus membranes out o’ there, youknow? And then I take one o’ them, uh–?

Willie: Mentholated eucalyptus coughdrops?

Frankie: Right. And I stick it– wedge it upthere, you know? I take a couple o’ whiffs, boy. Heh,ya feel like your head’s gonna explode.

Willie: Boy, isn’t THAT the truth? It’s likethe other night. I’m in the attic and I got a bunch o’mousetraps, ya know?

Frankie: Right.

Willie: And, for bait, I used a big piece of,uh–

Frankie: Camembert?

Willie: Right. So, so I set the trap, right?A-a-a-a-and I wanna see if the trap was gonna work,right? So I got the Camembert in there.

Frankie: Right.

Willie: But every time I went to taste thecheese, the thing came down right on my tongue! …I’m tellin’ ya — after forty, fifty times, I – I – Icouldn’t even feel the cheese, much less taste it. Ihate when THAT happens, I’ll tell ya that.

Frankie: Boy, you know what I hate? I hate– Igot a gross o’ them, uh–?

Willie: Razor blades?

Frankie: No.

Willie: Fish hooks?

Frankie: No.

Willie: Ah?

Frankie: Thumb tacks.

Willie: Ah! Yeah.

Frankie: Right?

Willie: Yeah.

Frankie: So I bring ’em home, you know, and Isprinkle ’em all out over the floor, you know?

Willie: Points up?

Frankie: Right.

Willie: Uh huh.

Frankie: Then I strip down to the nude and Ijust ROLL back and forth across the room, ya know?Stickin’ in all over my body. Then I jump in a hot tuband just soak.

Willie: Mm hmm.

Frankie: Hate that.

Willie: Sounds very painful.

Frankie: Very painful.

Willie: [heavy sigh] Boy. So what’re ya gonnado now?

Frankie: Eh, I’m gonna check fifteen.

Willie: Yeah. I’m gonna check nine.

Frankie: Okay.

[They head back up the hall, testing doorknobs as theygo. Finally, they pause to give each other a friendlypat on the shoulder.]

Frankie: Good night, Willie!

[Grinning, they exchange dismissive waves and exit inopposite directions around the corners at the far endof the hallway. Fade out.]

Submitted Anonymously

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