Abbott and Costello skit, Gold Ore
Taken from Abbott and Costello‘s radio show, although they also did the same basic routine in Lost in Alaska, and in their TV show as well. The basic premise is that Lou Costello’s Uncle has struck gold in Alaska, and Lou and Mr. Fields discuss mining for gold …
Lou Costello: My Uncle struck gold in Alaska!
Mr. Fields (Sid Fields): Why, Costello, this is wonderful! Well!! My boy!! I’ll help finance your trip! You need some money?
Lou Costello: Oh well, we could use a few dollars, yes!
Mr. Fields (Sid Fields): That’s fine! Now promise me one thing!
Lou Costello: Yes, what?
Mr. Fields (Sid Fields): When you come back from Alaska, bring me back some of that gold ore
Lou Costello: Gold ore?
Mr. Fields (Sid Fields): Yes!
Lou Costello: Gold or what?
Mr. Fields (Sid Fields): Just Gold ore!
Lou Costello: Well, its got to be gold or something!
Mr. Fields (Sid Fields): Gold or nothing! Just Gold ore!
Lou Costello: It can’t be gold or nothing! Its got to be gold or something!
Mr. Fields (Sid Fields): no no no, you don’t understand, you see gold comes from ore. You see first you dig the gold – and then you smelt it.
Lou Costello: How can I smelt it if I got a cold?
Mr. Fields (Sid Fields): No, never mind the cold; you smelt the ore. You see you’ve got to smelt it; first you dig the gold up – and then you smelt it.
Lou Costello: Why should I dig the gold up if its gonna smelt? If it smelts, I ain’t gonna dig it up!
Mr. Fields (Sid Fields): You must dig it up!
Lou Costello: I ain’t gonna dig it up if its gonna smelt, I’m gonna leave it in the ground, and I’m gonna shove dirt on it and bury it deeper and deeper.
Mr. Fields (Sid Fields): No no no, you don’t understand what I’m trying to explain to you is – that you’ve got to smelt the gold. First you smelt it and then it comes out refined!
Lou Costello: But that doesn’t make any sense! I mean if the gold is smelt, and you smelt the gold, why is it so refined? Why does it smell?
Bud Abbott: [voice coming from their apartment] Costello! Costello! What are you doing out there?
Lou Costello: Hey Abbott! Come here!!
[Abbott enters scene]
Lou Costello: Mr. Fields is going to finance our trip to Alaska!
Bud Abbott: Well, wonderful, Mr. Fields! And when we get to Alaska, we’ll send Mr. Fields some gold ore!
Lou Costello: Gold or what? Now that’s enough of that! Don’t give me that same routine that Mr Fields had.
Bud Abbott: I’m not … [sneezes]
[The boys return to their apartment as Bud wants to soak his feet. After Lou accidentally pours powdered cement with the water in the tub, they continue the conversation…]
Lou Costello: Hey Bud
Bud Abbott: What?
Lou Costello: I didn’t want to seem ignorant, but this thing out in the hall with Mr. Fields about that ‘gold or’, I just don’t quite understand it
Bud Abbott: What’s wrong with it?
Lou Costello: I don’t understand it
Bud Abbott: He was only talking to you about ‘gold ore’, Lou.
Lou Costello: Yeah, but I don’t understand all that kind of talk!
Bud Abbott: Costello, you don’t understand! Its a mining term! You see when you mine for gold, you’re apt to strike a vein of gold! See – vein, vein of gold.
Lou Costello: You strike a vein?
Bud Abbott: You strike a vein; vein, gold comes from veins.
Lou Costello: Is that why your legs are so lumpy?
Bud Abbott: Yes, sure … Listen!! Now, no remarks!
Lou Costello: Well, I mean, after all you just told me something, I, I …
Bud Abbott: Well I’m trying to tell you, what’s what!
Lou Costello: Well, go ahead!
Bud Abbott: When you’re mining for gold, you see you dig deep into the ground! Dig deep!
Lou Costello: Yeah …
Bud Abbott: Until you come to a vein in the ground. A vein of gold! And when you strike the vein, the deeper you dig, err, the more veins you find, and they get closer and closer together!
Lou Costello: Aaahhh! Now I understand!
Bud Abbott: I’m showing you something!
Lou Costello: Just like my grandfather!
Bud Abbott: You’re grandfather??
Lou Costello: He’s got very close veins!
Bud Abbott: He’s got … what are you talking about?
Lou Costello: I’m only trying to understand!
Bud Abbott: Well, I’m trying to tell you if you keep quiet! Listen, please!!
Lou Costello: Go ahead!
Bud Abbott: Now, if you follow the main vein, see, you get way down deep, along the main vein, that’s when you come to the Mother lode! You understand that? That’s when you strike your mother lode!
Lou Costello: I beg your pardon?
Bud Abbott: You strike the mother lode! You err, hit your mother vein!
Lou Costello: That’s enough!
Bud Abbott: What’s the matter?
Lou Costello: I’ve heard everything from you and Mr. Fields.
Bud Abbott: What’s the matter with you?
Lou Costello: I never again want to hear anything from you like that, Bud Abbott! You are besmirching the good name of Lou Costello, when you say to me that I got to go down in the mines, and strike my mother – in the vein, while she’s carrying a load; Bud Abbott! That is going too far!
Courtesy of Abbott and Costello – Who’s on First?