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The Honeymooners > Season 2 > Episode 37

The Honeymooners: Ralph comes home in a rage; after driving a bus for the Gotham Bus Company for nine years, he's been told to turn in his uniform. He is incensed, frustrated, and humiliated, and the loss of income has him bordering on panic--he actually suggests to Alice that they move in with her parents until he gets another job. Norton comes down to pick up Ralph to go bowling and, as only he can, he makes Ralph feel worse while trying to cheer him up. Ralph feels cheated and betrayed -- both by life and by J. J. Marshall, president of the bus company--so he decides to write Marshall a letter to tell him how he feels after being fired after nine years of loyal service. Norton writes what Ralph dictates. His opening line: "You dirty bum," delivered with such conviction by Ralph that it sounds as if he invented the insult for the occasion. After calling Marshall a miserable low-life and a few other things, he tells Norton to sign the letter "Respectfully yours, etc., etc." Ralph is too depressed to go bowling so he asks Norton to mail it on his way to the alley. Moments later Ralph finds out he hasn't been fired: he was told to turn in his uniform because he was getting a promotion. Ralph races out of the house to catch Norton before he mails the letter. Norton, meanwhile, asks a custodian at the bowling alley to mail the letter. Ralph arrives at the alley, but by the time he finds out what happened to the letter, it's too late--the custodian's disappeared and presumably dropped the letter in a mailbox outside the alley. Federal offense or not, Ralph is determined to retrieve the letter from the mailbox -- until a postman catches him and Norton trying to turn it over and shake out its contents. Ralph's only chance now is to intercept the letter before Mr. Marshall has a chance to read it. Marshall walks into his office just as Ralph is sorting through the mail and Ralph greets him with a friendly homina-homina. The first letter Marshall opens is Ralph's, and he begins reading it out loud to acquaint Ralph with the crank mail executives occasionally receive. Marshall is getting a kick out of the letter until he gets to the end. He doesn't mind the nasty remarks but he becomes infuriated when he thinks the author didn't have the courage to sign his name. Norton had written down exactly what Ralph said: "Respectfully yours, etc., etc." Ralph is so shocked by the turn of events that he has a spastic fainting attack (it looks like a precursor of break dancing) and collapses on Marshall's floor. Ralph recovers and races home to tell Alice the good news--because of Norton's stupidity he didn't lose his promotion. The Kramdens are preparing to celebrate with a Chinese dinner when Norton comes in with his good news: he went down to the bus company and told Mr. Marshall that Ralph was sorry for calling him a dirty bum. When Ralph hears this he has fainting spell number two, a "cartwheel faint" that plops him squarely on his backside. Running time: 32:29

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Title: Letter to the Boss
Air Date: November 14, 1953
Runtime: 30 mins
Genres: Comedy Family
Countries: USA
Actors: Art Carney Audrey Meadows Jackie Gleason Joyce Randolph

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