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It's a Miserable Life

‘It's a Miserable Life’

Season 2, Episode 4 -  Aired November 1, 1986

When the girls make a petition to save an old oak tree in the neighborhood, they go up against their miserable, bitter neighbor, Mrs. Claxton.

Quote from Blanche

Blanche: Wish me luck.
Dorothy: Wait. Blanche, why should you do it?
Blanche: Because we'll have a better chance. I happen to be a wonderful orator. And two of the commissioners can verify that.
Dorothy: Blanche, "orator" means "speaker".
Blanche: Really? Oh. Well, somebody else do the talking.

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Quote from Sophia

Mr. Pfeiffer: Come this way. Now, this is our slumber chamber. Oh, and here's my card. How may I be of service to you?
Dorothy: Uh, well, Mr. Pfeiffer.
Mr. Pfeiffer: That's Pfeiffer, the P is not silent.
Dorothy: Well, Mr. Pfeiffer. We're interested in arranging a funeral.
Mr. Pfeiffer: Isn't that lovely? The three of you planning for Mother.
Sophia: Hey, Pfeiffer, how would you like a punch in your p-face?

Quote from Blanche

Blanche: I was at my funeral at 16. I saw the whole thing.
Dorothy: What?
Blanche: Sixteen was a very difficult age for me. My hormones were racing, my body was blossoming. I had urges and yearnings so strong. Sometimes I'd wake up in the middle of the night, just sweating and screaming and clawing, like a trapped panther. Unable to release the lusty, steamy passions that constantly threatened to erupt from within me.
Dorothy: When I was 16, I had acne and played the accordion in a marching band.
Blanche: Well, nothing seemed to go right that year. But the final indignity occurred during the Miss Magnolia Blossom Pageant. Instead of doing the right thing and awarding me the crown as the most beautiful girl in the county, they made me runner-up. And awarded me Miss Congeniality instead. At that moment, I vowed to make that town pay for valuing my personality over my perfect body.
Dorothy: I hear that Vanna White has the same problem.
Blanche: So I decided to kill myself to teach that town a lesson. I phonied-up my death in a riverboat accident. I had the captain, who I was secretly seeing after school, help me with the details. Everything went perfectly. Oh, the town had never seen a funeral like mine. Hundreds of people, beautiful eulogies. And then, just as the minister was getting everybody in a frenzy of grieving, I rushed out and said, "Yoo-hoo. It's me, Blanche. I'm not really dead." Well, the next thing I knew, my daddy was horse-whipping that riverboat captain and dragging me off to a religious girls' school in Atlanta. My daddy didn't get angry, but once you did, he was a real peckerwood.

Quote from Rose

Rose: Ernest T. Minky was St Olaf's librarian.
Blanche: Kaboom.
Rose: He was also our town's only dentist. He had his office right in the library, where he could do both jobs at the same time. But Everyone hated Minky. Well, he seemed to take great pleasure in giving other people pain. They hated him so much, that nobody ever went to the dentist. Or the library. In 1938, you could tell if someone was from St Olaf. They were illiterate and they had teeth that looked like Indian corn.
Dorothy: Thank you, Rose. That was a wonderful story.
Rose: I'm only half done.
Sophia: I passed a kidney stone once that was less painful than this.
Rose: One summer, I worked up enough nerve to check out the latest Nancy Drew mystery and Mr. Minky was stamping my book and his tie caught in the stamping machine. He'd have choked to death if I hadn't cut his tie with my Girl Scout knife. Well, he was so overwhelmed with gratitude that he let me check my book out for a week.
Blanche: What's so special about that?
Rose: Oh, usually he'd only let you check a book out for an hour. Mr Minky always said, "Books belong in a library."
Dorothy: Really, Rose? 'Cause I always thought Churchill said that at Yalta.
Rose: The point is, some people you think are mean might just need a little kindness.

Quote from Sophia

Blanche: Sophia, Forget it. We can't do that.
Sophia: Why not?
Dorothy: Because stapling a $20 bill to the petition is illegal. It's bribery. And don't tell us that's how you got things done in Sicily.
Sophia: That's not how we got things done in Sicily. Bribing people with money was how we got things done in New York. In Sicily, you cut off a horse's head and put it in somebody's bed.
Blanche: Sophia, you're making that up.
Sophia: Like hell. Our garbage commissioner, Fredo Lombardy, went on strike once. He woke up the next morning sharing a pillow with National Velvet. At 7.00am, he was out cleaning the street with his tongue.

Quote from Blanche

Blanche: Sophia, we live in the greatest country in the world. A country founded on the principles of honesty, truth and fairness. I am certain that, once we present our petition, the democratic system will prevail. And our noble endeavor to save that mighty oak will prove victorious.
Sophia: You certainly sound pretty confident.
Dorothy: Well, she slept with two of the commissioners.
Sophia: That works in Sicily and New York.

Quote from Sophia

Rose: Mrs. Claxton, we want you to know we all appreciate you helping us to save the tree.
Mrs. Claxton: I'm not. I'm here to make sure they tear it down. I hate trees. I hate people.
Blanche: Well, Mrs. Claxton, Rose told us you said you were going to help us.
Mrs. Claxton: That's right.
Dorothy: And now you're not?
Mrs. Claxton: That's right.
Rose: Well, why did you lie?
Mrs. Claxton: To get the Danish. Look, there's nothing I hate more than someone who thinks that every person who lives alone wants company and a few kind words. I live by myself because I like it. I've got no use for people. Never have. See you inside.
Dorothy: Ma, where are you going?
Sophia: To throw holy water on her. If she spits up pea soup and her head spins around, we're in big trouble.

Quote from Sophia

Blanche: Those sounds were coming from that urn with Mrs. Claxton in it.
Dorothy: Oh, Blanche, now you were dreaming. I'm telling you, this house is possessed by her spirit.
Sophia: Morning.
Blanche: Sophia, listen. Last night, in the middle of the night, about two in the morning, did you hear some awful, terrible, ghastly sounds?
Sophia: Heard 'em? I made 'em. There's a reason for expiration dates on cottage cheese. My kingdom for an Alka-Seltzer.

Quote from Sophia

Dorothy: How did you do?
Sophia: I got 35 people to sign up.
Dorothy: Hey, that's great. Wait, Ma, three of these people are dead.
Sophia: Who are they gonna tell?

Quote from Blanche

Dorothy: Blanche, you've been gone three hours and you only got one guy to sign this petition?
Blanche: Well, give me a chance to freshen up and change clothes, I'll get you another one.

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