S02E01 Lesson 7 – Influence Friends and Win People the Burkiss Way

The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living, Radio’s Advanced Correspondence Course. How to enrol: Fill in your name here ............................ and throw away this page to receive Lesson 7: Influence Friends and Win People the Burkiss Way, with instruction from Jo Kendall, Nigel Rees, Chris Emmett and Fred Harris. Learn the Burkiss Way to write a script like Andrew Marshall and David Renwick and the Burkiss Way to produce a programme like Simon Brett (You’ll be amazed at the results!).

First broadcast on 15 December 1976



Customer #1: I used to be a illiterate fag. I put it down to coming from a rough neighbourhood. Even as a young child I couldn’t step through the back door without getting mugged. So I had to stay outside… Then the Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living showed me how even I could appear genteel, refined and an intellectual genius. All I gotta do is walk ’round everywhere with the Bay City Rollers. Thanks to the Burkiss Way…

F/X: clock ticking

Customer #2 (Eric Pode-like voice): It’s surprising how people make fun of little things. Every time I went out everyone used to shout ‘Oooh, here comes old four-eyes again!’ Then Professor Burkiss came up with the answer: Glasses. Now, now with special dark glasses, two of my eyes are completely masked and I look completely normal. Except for having two covered up eyes down one side of me nose and two exposed eyes down the other, thanks to the Burkiss Way. Haaa…

Customer #3: I… I used to be a complete failure with men. Every time I tried to get off with a gentleman of my own age, he just walked away and for years I could never work out why. Then, one day a friend said ‘Listen, Jim… why not enroll in the Burkiss Way?’

Music: Burkiss way opening signature tune

Burkiss Way Announcer: Yes, we’re back; the BBC’s first and only radio show made exclusively for suckers. The Burkiss Way to Dynamic Living, or you too can have one like mine. Simply send all your money now, plus the name and the address of your psychiatric wing, to Jo Kendall, Nigel Rees, Chris Emmett and Fred Harris and any second now you’ll receive details of number seven in our amazing series of correspondence courses, Influence Friends And Win People The Burkiss Way.

Music: out

Male Presenter: Are you unsuccessful in life, bumbling, puny, forgetful, going bald, badly depressed, short of money, inarticulate, overweight, ugly, moronic, impotent?

Eric Pode: Yes.

Female Presenter: Yes. Eric Pode of Croydon here will tell you that life can be pretty grim if you don’t know how to live it properly.

Eric Pode: Life can be pretty grim if you don’t know how to live it properly.

Female Presenter: Thank you. Er Mr Croydon?

Eric Pode: (very quietly) Yeah?

Female Presenter: I imagine it’s not easy being stupid, wet, scrawny and generally repellent.

Eric Pode: I find it quiet easy actually.

Male Presenter: Ha ha ha. Well, of course Mr Croydon here isn’t alone. All over the country there are thousands just like him. In fact, here is one from Bristol:

Eric Pode of Bristol: (from a distance) Good evening.

Male Presenter: And here are party of them from Abergavenny:

Eric Podes of Abergavenny: (various voices) Good evening. Good evening, mate. Good evening, everybody. Hello…

Male Presenter: But they don’t have to be like that, they do it from choice. If however you feel inferior in some way, then allow us at the Professor Emil Burkiss—

F/X: choir singing ‘Hallelujah!’ (from Hallelujah Chorus by Händel)

Male Presenter: —Academy for Dynam.. Academy for Dynamic Living to put matters right.

Female Presenter: Using the principles laid down by Professor Emil Burkiss—

F/X: ‘Hallelujah!’

Female Presenter: —we can make stupid people smart. And if they don’t want to smart, we’ll give them some ointment. Above all, our aim is to help you. There’s no room in the Burkiss organisation for greedy businessmen who are only interested in conning money out of people. I’m afraid we’re full up at the moment. But don’t just take our word for the Burkiss success story.

Music: [???]

Narrator: It was never any fun for Eustace sunbathing on the beach. It was always the other guys that seemed to have all the fun…

Music: fades out

F/X: man and woman giggling and whooping

Eustace: Er, excuse me, is anyone sitting on this bit of sand?

Norman: Get out of my sight! Get out of my sight, you skinny, repulsive little [slug ?]! I wouldn’t let my cat spit on you, you [gummy ?] pimply-faced little flower grader!

F/X: slapping noises

Eustace: Ohh! Ow, oh!

Norman: And stop putting that after-shave on while I’m talking to you! Come on Jane, honey, let’s go.

Jane: Alright Norman. Hang on while I pick up my bikini.

Narrator: But Eustace had an idea.

Eustace: Thinks: The big bully. I’ll show him. No, perhaps that’s going a bit far. Hang on?! What’s this newspaper?

F/X: paper rustling

Eustace: This advert for the Burkiss Way. Hmm… Gives me an idea.

F/X: glissando

Narrator: Thirteen weeks later.

Eustace: Thinks: Just look at these bulging, rippling muscles. Now I’ll try again.

Narrator: And…

F/X: foot steps on the sand

Norman: Mmhmhmmhm, mmhh…

Jane: Norman? Who’s that handsome man coming towards us?

Eustace: It’s me!

Narrator: But…

Norman: That does it! Take that, you abject pathetic little weed!

F/X: ‘slap’

Jane: Oww!! Ohh, Norman!

Norman: Oh push off, you! Come on, Eustace, you’re really my type, mmhh…

Eustace: Hey, put me down! What are you doing? Stop, [hands off ?]!

Music: resumes

Narrator: Yes, another satisfied customer. Thanks to the Burkiss Way.

Music: out

Male Presenter: Well, that’s an example of what Professor Emil Burkiss—

F/X: ‘Hallelujah!’

Male Presenter: —can do for you! Starting this week we’re launching a brand new series of radio correspondence courses. If you have a Radio Times handy, turn to page seventeen and tear the bottom off. Right, done that? Good, now screw it up and throw it away, it’s a picture of Eddie Waring.

Female Presenter: Now, just send us a stamped address bank manager and you’re ready for Lesson 7, How To Influence Friends And Win People The Burkiss Way.

Male Presenter: And first, how to succeed in business without really trying. To see what sort of influence you need to wheel in order to rise to the top at work, let’s study this next recording of a company’s annual board meeting.

(various people muttering)

Chairman: Er, alright, this.. alright, quiet please, ladies and gentlemen. Quiet, quiet. I now call this board meeting of the Whizzo Dead Rat Company to order. We begin with the company’s annual report, Thrimpson.

Thrimpson: Er yes, er well, in the financial year ended five four seventy-six Mr Chairman, the accounts for the Whizzo Dead Rat Company show a net profit of er, twenty-six million five hundred and seventy-two thousand six hundred and sixty-seven pounds and sixty-five pence, Sir.

Chairman: How much is that in Dollars?

Thrimpson: Er… nought, Sir.

Chairman: What? Well, how many dead rats did we sell during the year?

Thrimpson: Er, first half or second half [??]?

Chairman: Both halves.

Thrimpson: Er… none, Sir.

Chairman: None? None?! Smoth! You’re Head of Marketing, why is this?

Smoth: Because I’m your mistress, Sir.

Chairman: No no no no no no, I mean why is there this slump?

Smoth: Ohhh, oh I see. Well, it is a generally recognised tenet of economic science, Sir, that there’s always less of a demand for dead rats during recession.

Chairman: Well, what happened to our sales campaign? Jobes?

Jobes: Ahem, well, well, we we we did like you said, Sir; offered a free limb amputation with every dead rat—

Chairman: Yes …?

Jobes: —but it didn’t seem to make any difference.

Chairman: Ahhh, that’s probably were we made our mistake.

Jobes: Oh, you think so, Sir?

Chairman: Yes yes, we were faaar too generous. I mean, good lord! A whole free limb amputation? People probably thought there was catch. They probably smelled a rat.

Smoth: Yes, Sir. I think that’s what putting most of them off.

Jobes: Er, if you permit me, Sir, I think that part of the trouble is that people didn’t actually want a free limb amputation.

Chairman: What?!! Didn’t want one?

Jobes: No, Sir.

Chairman: When I was boy I’d give my right arm for a free limb amputation. What’s this country coming to, for heaven’s sake!

Thrimpson: Er, our auditor said it was an error of judgement, Sir, making that take-over bid for Consolidated Dung.

Chairman: In what way?

Smoth: Erm, well, nobody ever actually bought any of their dung, Sir. The company never made any profit.

Chairman: I’m fully aware of that, Smoth.

Smoth: Er well yes, Sir, but I—

Chairman: Don’t worry, I’ll soon make this company solvent. With this: Our new product! Look at this!

Smoth: This?

Jobes: (simultaneously) What?!

(slight pause)

Chairman: Erm, well er, it’s too unpleasant to actually describe it on the air, but er, mark my words, it’ll go like hotcakes!

Jobes: Yes, like the dead rats, you mean, Sir.

Smoth: Erm, and the dung.

Thrimpson: And the free amputation.

Chairman: Look, are you trying to tell me I don’t know how to run a business? Honestly, it’s useless trying to deal with you, like I’m flogging a dead horse!

Thrimpson: Er not at seventy-seven pounds fifty a time, [you’ll not ?], Sir.

Chairman: I’m not dropping the price.

Smoth: Look, Sir… now why don’t we change our approach slightly, Sir? You know, try to sell something… well… nice.

Jobes: Yes…

Thrimpson: Er yes, Sir.

Chairman: Nice?!

Jobes: Well y..yes, Sir. Why don’t we try marketing something that people actually…

Thrimpson: … want to buy, Sir.

Jobes: —want, want to buy, as it were, yes, Sir.

Chairman: Sounds like a crackpot idea to me. Dear me, if you’ll think that—

F/X: phone ringing, handset taken off cradle

Chairman: Sir Trivial Crapnall. Oh yes yes, hello? What?! Oh yes yes, I’m sure we can arrange that, yes yes. Eight thousand five hundred dead rats, yes yes… sixteen thousand sachets of dung, yes yes yes yes yes… four hundred and seventy-three dead horses? Yes, yes yes… and what? What? Oh that… yes, yes. Well, we’re just starting to market that, yes yes. I’ll put the order through straightaway, goodbye.

F/X: phone handset replaced on cradle

Chairman: Ohhhh, saved again.

Smoth: Really, Sir?

Chairman: Yes, yes, sometimes I don’t know what we’d do without British Rail catering.

Male Presenter: Er before we go on, here is an important announcement:

F/X: door bell

Announcer: (over PA) The Burkiss Way wish to apologise to British Rail for that last joke. This was due to a personal vendetta by one of the script writers, who was extremely annoyed at being given a cold fried egg at Edinburgh station, particularly when he had asked for a return ticket to Newcastle. Thank you.

F/X: door bell

Male Presenter: Well now, how to influence friends. This is quite a simple exercise, but it’ll be useful if you get a friend to help you. Stand him up at the other end of the room and try waving at him, preferably using a five pound note.

Female Presenter: And always try and look your best when with friends. With a little extra make-up and a slightly lower cut dress, you could become the focus of attention – as many men have found out. And of course, don’t forget your jewellery.

F/X: vibraphone glissando

Music: [???]

Voice-over: New from Burkiss Beauty Service. Ears pierced while you wait, teeth straightened out, hair removed. Apply Al Carlotti and his boys, Sicily.

Music: out

F/X: vibraphone glissando

Male Presenter: Well, in a moment or two we return for a detailed look into the second part of our course, how to win people. That’s after the following intermission.

Music: Theme from A Summer Place

Announcer: There will now be a short intermission.

Music: [???]

Voice-over: (over) Coming soon, the story of a man who always gets his fair shares. The man who likes to see figures that are nicely balanced and who’s never caught with his profit margins down.

Music: changes tempo downwards

Hans (Scandinavian? accent): Mmh..

Ingrid (Scandinavian? accent): Hoohh…

Hans: Mmmh…

Ingrid: Come with me…

Hans: Mmm…

Ingrid: … I cannot wait any longer.

Hans: No no no, I cannot.

Ingrid: Ohh, not even if I show you both of these?

Hans: Ohh, oh no no, you know I can never resist double entry book-keeping.

Music: original tempo resumes

Voice-over: (over) Yes, ‘Danish Joint Auditor On The Job’, the film that Accountancy Today tried to ban.

Music: fades into background

Ingrid: Ohh, Hans!

Hans: Ohh, Ingrid.

Ingrid: Ohh, Hans!

Hans: Ohh, Ingrid.

Ingrid: Ohh, Hans!

Hans: Look, we’ll have to check the figures a bit faster than this. What comes after that last o?

Music: back into foreground

Voice-over: (over) From the people who brought you ‘I Am Curious, Merchant Banker’:

Music: (stereotypical French) accordion music

Man (French accent): Mmm…

Woman (French accent): Ohh…

Man: Hmmm…

Woman: Right, I ’ave done it, I ’ave got into all this rubber, —

Man: Uh…

Woman: —this time, perhaps you won’t suddenly loose interest.

Man: Ah, too late, mon amour. Rubber ’as already gone down six points. Let’s go into zinc while there’s still time!

Woman: Alright! Give me a hand, help me.

F/X: metallic clattering

Music: original music resumes

Voice-over: (over) … and the blockbusting Fräuleins in ‘Equitable Life-Insurance’:

Music: dramatic music

Mrs Himmler (German accent): Ach, insurance man! Now you can’t get away until you’ve had ein hundred of these! Take that, and that, und that!

Insurance Agent: Really, Mrs Himmler, must you always pay your premium one penny at a time?

Mrs Himmler: Jaaah!!

Music: original music resumes

Voice-over: (over) Yes, if you need to liquidate your holdings, don’t miss ‘Danish Joint Auditor On The Job’. Coming soon to this intermission.

Music: out

Female Presenter: Another method of winning people is through competitions. Competitions not unlike this one.

Music: Ask the Family signature tune (Acka Raga), then out

Quizmaster: (rather bored-sounding) Hello… and welcome to another edition of Ask The Cleverdicks. And tonight on Ask The Cleverdicks we have the Smartypants family from Dulwich. And sitting opposite them from Dulwich, an example of real intellectual brilliance – me! Oh, and over here we have the God-Doesn’t-It-Make-You-Sick family, who come from Dulwich. Right, just a reminder of the silly rules, I ask a question and you have to show off. (short pause) So here we go with question one: Oh dear! Who first formulated the theory of relativity, promulgated the quantum hypothesis and conducted experiments of mass and energy?

F/X: ‘buzz’

Mr Smartypants: The Smartypants family, Dulwich.

Quizmaster: Correct, that’s who it was. On to question two: Oh pathetic! Rearrange the letters of something meaning ‘dull and lifeless’ to give the name of a comedian.

F/X: ‘buzzz’

Mrs Smartypants: Dick Emery.

Quizmaster: Correct. And the name of the comedian?

Mrs Smartypants: Er, Ricky Mede, the Northern club comic.

Quizmaster: Yes, alright. A simple one here for the God-Doesn’t-It-Make-You-Sick family: What’s the next number: two, three, four…

F/X: ‘buzz’

Damien (decidedly not sounding four years old): Eight. It’s the fourth and final valency figure for the element osmium.

Quizmaster: Yes, straightfoward one that. Well done, four year old Damien. What’s next? Oh yes, here’s a recording of a noise being made from an unusual angle.

F/X: weird noise

Smartypants family members: (muttering) Oh dear… it’s er… cosmic, genetic, oscilloscopic, er…

Mrs Smartypants: Erm, we’d like to have a stab at Esther Rantzen.

Quizmaster: Oh very well, here she is.

F/X: ‘stab’

Esther Rantzen: Ahhhhhhhouuu!

Quizmaster: Well done. Now one for the children only. What do you call a man who speaks fifty-three languages?

F/X: ‘buzzz’

Smartypants Child: Erm, quinto-decimo-duo-lingual?

Quizmaster: That’s fifty-two languages. Shows these children don’t know everything, thank goodness. I’m going to throw this one over to the other side…

Smartypants Child: Ohhh! Let me go, ohhhhh!

F/X: falling tone, ‘clunk’

Quizmaster: The God-Doesn’t-It-Make-You-Sick children, what do you call a man who speaks fifty-three languages?

God-Doesn’t-It-Make-You-Sick Child: Daddy.

Quizmaster: Yes, correct. Now, would you all please put on your blindfolds, thank you. (slight pause) [Now/No ??] that’s better. Why, you can take ’em off again now. Now a question, now a question for the families’ parrots: Which parrot can imitate my voice? (slight pause) I see the Smartypants parrot has got its light on. Yes, very good, I’ll give you two points for that. But now we come to the last part, thank goodness. So everybody fingers on the buttons in front of you, that’s it.

F/X: electric discharge

Both families: Ahhhhh! Owwwww! Owww! Oouououoww!

Quizmaster: That’ll teach you to be so clever. So with the electrocution spot over we say goodbye now and ha, see you next week.

Music: [???]

Female Presenter: Well, as I was saying, how to win people. First, get some people. And then, win them. Simple enough, isn’t it? But that could be where your troubles begin…

F/X: door bell

Delivery Man: Eh morning, er Mrs Sproat?

Mrs Perskins: No.

Delivery Man: Mrs Mabel Sproat?

Mrs Perskins: No.

Delivery Man: Mrs Mabel Sproat of er 14 Hackney Gardens, Lewisham?

Mrs Perskins: Noo.

Delivery Man: Oh good.

Mrs Perskins: Why’d you ask?

Delivery Man: Just a routine precaution. Now then, it’s er Mrs Dora Perskins, innit dear?

Mrs Perskins: Er yes.

Delivery Man: It’s Bleed-Em-Dry Football Pools, madam. I got your prize here.

Mrs Perskins: Prize?

Delivery Man: Yes, third price in the treble chance, madam. I just unpack it for you.

F/X: wooden crate being opened

Delivery Man: Ah, here we go. Ughh… ahh…

Cabinet Minister: Err, good evening. Er, tonight, I..ii want to say, mo.. most emphatically…

Mrs Perskins: What is it?

Cabinet Minister: … as I [say ?] of course… (drones on in background)

Delivery Man: Well it’s, it’s a cabinet minister, madam, just sign here, would you?

Mrs Perskins: A what?

Delivery Man: A cabinet minister. Just sign here, would you?

Mrs Perskins: A cabinet minister? But what does it do?

Delivery Man: Do? Er ha, well [look here/lovely ??], it’s, it is a member of the guvernment, it doesn’t do anything. Look, will you just sign here, please…

Mrs Perskins: I’m sorry, he’s no good to me. He doesn’t go with me curtains.

Delivery Man: Er, but er—

Mrs Perskins: Besides, his voice gets on me nerves.

Delivery Man: Well, well, ah yeah, just get him to sit down, that’ll soon muffle it. Now, could you just sign here, please—

Mrs Perskins: I’m sorry, I’m not havin’ him.

Delivery Man: Reconsider.

Mrs Perskins: No.

Delivery Man: Oh please.

Mrs Perskins: No!

Delivery Man: Just sign here, will—

Mrs Perskins: For the last time, put that autograph book away and leave me alone!

Delivery Man: Hmph! I’ve got it! I’ve got it. Use it as a dustbin, to dispose of some useless lump of rubbish.

Mrs Perskins: But I haven’t got a useless lump of rubbish.

Delivery Man: Then you’re in luck, lady! I got the Chancellor of the Exchequer in the other crate.

Cabinet Minister: (out)

Male Presenter: Well, that just about concludes today’s course on How To Win People And Influence Friends, and we finish off with a more detailed look at one of our case histories in The Burkiss Way in Action.

Female Presenter: And our tale this week comes from the pen of Charles Dickens, a writer which unfortunately never became as famous as its owner. We present: The Story of Young Nickertwist Copperby.

Music: [???]

Narrator: (old man’s voice) Our story begins in a strange, rambling old voice, but fortunately (normal voice) very soon changes. On a fierce, windy night in November, a young mother and her doctor are struggling to bring a baby into the world. (groaning and moaning in background) Nine months later, Nickertwist Copperby is born.

Nickertwist Copperby: (unintelligible baby speech)

Mrs Copperby: Do you know, Mr Copperby, I do believe it’s got your ears.

Mr Copperby: Pardon?

Mrs Copperby: I was right. Give those back to your father this instant!

Nickertwist Copperby: (cries a little)

Music: [???]

Narrator: Life became bleak though, when Mr Copperby died. Young Nickertwist would sit and stare at the painting of his father hanging by the stairs, and then think how well the artist had caught the light on the [noose ?]. Mrs Copperby however still had her admirers. One at a time, on Saturday afternoons.

F/X: knocking on door, then door handle

Lord Tinsdale: Good morning, young man. I’ve come to see your mother.

Nickertwist Copperby: Er, she’s in bed.

Lord Tinsdale: Alright, I’ll wait until she’s finished.

Nickertwist Copperby: What, what what d’you want?

Lord Tinsdale: I am Lord Tinsdale, the artist. I’ve come to finish my work on your mother’s bust.

Nickertwist Copperby: You disgust me! Get out!

F/X: door being slammed shut

Mrs Copperby: Nick! Nick! Ohh, there you are. I’ve the most delightful news for you, Nick. You know Sir Wensley Partington?

Nickertwist Copperby: He comes round every morning, doesn’t he?

Mrs Copperby: With the help of some strong coffee, yes. Well Nick, you’ll soon have to start calling him ‘father’.

Nickertwist Copperby: Oh, that.. that that’s marvellous news, Mama!

Mrs Copperby: Oh I knew you’d be pleased.

Nickertwist Copperby: He’s becoming a priest! That means we won’t have to put up with the miserable old face-ache round here any more!

Mrs Copperby: Nickertwist! If you and he can’t get on, I shall have to send you away.

Nickertwist Copperby: Away, Mama?

Mrs Copperby: To school, Nick. To Dotheboys Hall.

Nickertwist Copperby: Mama!

Music: [???]

Narrator: (over) And to Dotheboys Hall young Copperby was sent. He soon became terrified of Wackford Squeers, but he got on quite well with the rest of Wackford’s staff.

Mr Wackford: Copperby?! Come here!

F/X: chains clanking

Nickertwist Copperby: Yes, Sir?

Mr Wackford: Where’s your homework, Copperby?

Nickertwist Copperby: It, it’s at at home, Sir.

Mr Wackford: Don’t answer me back, boy!

Nickertwist Copperby: But, but but Mr Wackford, Sir…

Mr Wackford: And don’t call me names, either! And don’t speak with your mouth open and take your feet off the floor! I’ll soon wipe that skin off your feet! Hold out your hand!

Nickertwist Copperby: Oh no no, Sir! No, Sir, anything but that, Sir!

Mr Wackford: Don’t be a baby, Copperby! Hold out your hand, that’s better, now! Where’s that saw?

F/X: sawing noises

Nickertwist Copperby: Ahh! Ow! Oh, no, Sir! Ahh!

Music: [???]

Narrator: In a week, Copperby had stood as much as he could… until he he had his feet sawn off as well, then he fell over. But eventually, he ran away to seek fame and fortune in the cobbled streets of London.

F/X: street atmosphere

Nickertwist Copperby: If you please, Miss, I’d like to get to Peckham.

Lady in the street: How dare you?! Take that!

F/X: ‘plock’

Nickertwist Copperby: Owww!

Fagin (Jewish accent): Can I be of assistance, my dear?

Nickertwist Copperby: Er, yes, Sir. If you please, Sir, I, Nickertwist Copperby, am all alone in this great city, looking for shelter, and completely at the mercy of the first hideous-looking jew who grabs me for his gang of young pickpockets.

Fagin: Ah, good, good. In here.

F/X: door handle, door closing again

Nickertwist Copperby: Eww, ohh! What’s this dingy, greasy hole?

Fagin: That’s my mouth, my dear. Now then: Copperby, my dear, I shall say you are just the person to help out a poor, deserving old gentleman.

Nickertwist Copperby: Certainly. Where is he?

Fagin: Such a sense of humor, the young man has, hasn’t he Nancy?

Nancy (played camp): Mmm, I’ll say, sugar.

Nickertwist Copperby: I… I I I, I think, I think I ought to go. My mama didn’t approve of me meeting lots of strange men.

Fagin: What makes you think that?

Nickertwist Copperby: She always kept her bedroom door locked.

Fagin: Weell, weell, we are as straight as [dice ??], aren’t we Nancy?

Nancy: Do me a favour, Fagin.

Fagin: Later, my dear, later. Now, Copperby, Copperby, I want you to—

Nickertwist Copperby: Sir?

Fagin: —play a little game, —

Nickertwist Copperby: Yes, Sir?

Fagin: —I just want you to play a little game, my boy. Listen to what young Smudger over there says and note it down on this piece of paper.

Nickertwist Copperby: Very well, Sir.

Smudger (young boy’s voice): Right. What’s the difference between a buffalo and a bison – you can’t wash your hands in a buffalo.

Fagin: Yeees yes, very good, very good. Did you.. did you write all that down, my dear?

Nickertwist Copperby: Yes Sir, —

F/X: paper rustling

Nickertwist Copperby: —there we are.

Fagin: Excellent. I think you have the makings of a good one, Copperby, my dear.

Nickertwist Copperby: Er, a good what, Sir?

Fagin: Shhh!

F/X: door handle, door closing again

Fagin: Ahh, ahh ha! It’s you, Dodger. Any luck today, my dear?

Artful Dodger (falsetto): I done my best, Fagin. Here.

Fagin: Ahh, let’s see, let’s see what you’ve got, let’s see.

F/X: paper rustling

Fagin: My wife’s so fat, she kickstarts jumbo jets. Excuse me, Madam, your husband’s been run over by a steam roller – I’m in the bath, slip him under the door. Do you file your nails – No, I throw them away. Yes, lovely Dodger, lovely, lovely! All nice and old and completely untraceable, all the better for his purpose!

Nickertwist Copperby: F..f..f..f..for whose purpose, Sir?

Fagin: That would be telling, Copperby, my dear.

Artful Dodger: Yeah, Monkhouse would murder us if—

Fagin: No!!

Artful Dodger: —ow!

Nickertwist Copperby: What?

Artful Dodger: Oh sorry, Fagin!

Nickertwist Copperby: Monkhouse! So that’s it! This man is paying you to go round the city, stealing jokes for him!

Fagin: Shhhh! Copperby, my dear, too much knowledge isn’t good for you. I shall send you out now on a job, and to make sure you behave yourself, you’ll be accompanied by Miss Betsy.

Nickertwist Copperby: Who’s she? Some common trumpet I’ll bet!

Fagin: I think you mean strumpet! Strumpet, Copperby, my dear! A trumpet, is a rather expensive brassy thing that doesn’t take too long to pick up, and, and an’ you finger it at one end, er I I… Betsy? Betsy. Come [in here a minute?]!

F/X: door handle

Mrs Copperby: Hello Fagin, what is it?

Nickertwist Copperby: Mama!

Mrs Copperby: Nick?!

Nickertwist Copperby: Mama, you?! Operating in this den of vice? I might have known. All my life you’ve thought of nothing but men! Men, men, men! Every time I see you it’s with some man! I’ll bet you even went with one before I was born!

Mrs Copperby: Oh Nick! Just give me one last chance! From this moment on, I’ll do everything I can to mend my ways.

Narrator: But, tragedy was to intervene.

Music: Funeral March by Chopin (continues in background)

Narrator: Three years later, young Nickertwist Copperby’s mother was lying in the local church cemetery.

Nickertwist Copperby: (sobbing) Ohh, oh Mama! Oh how did it have to happen?! Why? Why oh Mama? It’s just not, it’s not fair, Mama! Oh Mama!

Mrs Copperby: Yes?

Nickertwist Copperby: Mama! Will you leave the vicar alone and let the poor man get on with his funeral!

Music: Burkiss Way closing signature tune

Burkiss Way Announcer: Do you find things get on top of you at funerals, do you find it impossible to get on with women? After just two weeks of our course all that could be reversed. You find it impossible to get off with women. Apply now to Jo Kendall, Nigel Rees, Chris Emmett and Fred Harris, care of the Burkiss Way, Stepney. Andrew Marshall and David Renwick will write you a script under a special money-back offer: If not completely satisfied, you simply send us some money back. Addressed please to producer Simon Brett of Stepney. See you next week, suckers and Happy Dynamic Living!

End