07 July 2014

I'm reading a biography of Cary Grant, one of my all-time favorite actors, and so while I was making the bed a little while ago, this little scene came into my head. It's a nod to those old screwball comedies. I think it's about a couple staying three nights in a haunted castle in order to inherit the estate. Yeah, yeah, that's kind of a cliché, but . . . Old films seem cliché these days anyway.

I'll call the Cary Grant character "Archie." He would've been amused by that. And the would-be Kate Hepburn can be, well, "Kate."

They start out in a room—you can picture it: a 40s Hollywood set decorator's idea of a posh castle bedroom. And these two characters are struggling to make the bed while a thunderstorm rages outside the windows. At the moment, they each hold a side of a bedsheet and are engaging in a tug of war with it.

ARCHIE: (tugging) You'll see—

Kate tugs back.

ARCHIE: (tugging) There's . . .

Kate tugs. Archie tugs and manages to pull the sheet from Kate's hands.

He shifts the sheet through his fingers.

ARCHIE: Ah, there. See?

He finds the tag on the sheet.

ARCHIE: There it is.

He shows it to Kate.

KATE: There it is.

ARCHIE: Yes, that's right, there it is.

KATE: Well, goodie for you.

ARCHIE: Now, look here. This is important.

KATE: Oh, it's important.

ARCHIE: They wouldn't bother with the manufacturing costs if it weren't important. You need the tag to know which way the sheet is supposed to go.

Thunder booms. Kate and Archie jump, look uneasily at one another as the lights flicker.

ARCHIE: It's all right. We can make three nights.

KATE: You're joking. We can't even make a bed.

Another, louder clap of thunder and both of them dive for the bed, pulling the sheet over their heads. After a moment each peeks out.

ARCHIE: Planning to sleep in your clothes?

KATE: It is a bit chilly in this place.

ARCHIE: You could always go for flannels.

KATE: I look better in my clothes.

She gets out of the bed.

KATE: Since you clearly have things covered here, I'll go make up the bed in my room.

ARCHIE: Need any help?

KATE: (as she heads for the door) I'm sure I'll be fine. I'll just look for the tags.

No comments: