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The Vagabond



The scene is a movie screen. After several flashes of main titles, names of producers, photographers, men who record, direct, edit, there is heard the mellifluous voice of an unseen commentator. A slow fade-in on a bathroom--small, title less, and complete. Five little tots pile into the foreground.

Announcer: "The first thing the quintuplets do upon rising with a cheery smile is to--(pause; here the audience should laugh, not altogether but separate, raucous laughs in various parts of the theatre) wash their hands and face. Notice, mothers, how they brush their own teeth themselves. Before, you have seen the girls crawl, walk, and gibber but never talk; now for the first time Emilie, who is squeezing the toothpaste over the nurse's dress, will say "Mais oui' in French."

Nurse: "Say 'Mais oui, Marie."

Marie: "Mais oui."

Announcer: "I am sorry, ladies and gentlemen; I thought it was Emilie on top of the wash bowl. But all the quintuplets can talk at the bright age of three. Now the girls dress and troop out to breakfast."

The scene dissolves into another room with high chairs and various playthings neatly arranged.

Announcer: "See, they are eating a hearty breakfast. What's this, Annette refuses to drink all of her milk? Oh, Annette! Come now, that's a good girl."

Annette throws the rest of her milk viciously at the unidentified sister nearest her.

Announcer: "Well, see how intent the little dears are with their food. On the left we see Marie, next to her is Emilie--what a big mouthful she is taking, on Emilie's left is Y(pronounced "c") vonne, then comes Annette, and finally Cecile. (Meanwhile, the Doctor enters the room). As they run towards the good Doctor, Emilie is first, then Annette, then Marie, next Cecile, and last of all little, backward Yvonne."

Doctor: "Hello, my big girls. How are you, Emilie? Fine, did you say? I didn't quite hear that (he chuckles). And how is Annette? Hmmm? And who is that shy little girl behind Cecile? Is that Yvonne? Hmmm?"

Four hundred and fifty feet of film pass, during which time the Doctor catalogues the position and character (Announcer: "Observe, please, that each quintuplet has a different personality." This is said triumphantly.) of all but the nurses. By some miracle the last scene arrives--a return to the bathroom scene, but this time only the bathtub can be seen. Four supple bodies are being launched by the nurses into the water.

Announcer: "It is an amazing thing that last year all the quintuplets could get into one bathtub; now, alas, the fifth must wait for the others. If only Mrs. Dionne--"

With childish delight the Vagabond will skip into the Keith Memorial Theatre to see and hear "A Day in the Life of the Dionne Quintuplets" once every day this week.

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