Barstool Sports

Monday, November 20, 2006

The Thanksgiving tradition: Planes, Trains and Automobiles

Your Uncle Buck is a sucker for holiday tradition, and with Chowdaheads preparing for its second Thanksgiving, UB has decided he would revive a Thanksgiving tradition he hopes the rest of you will try...Every year UB and his family watch the only true Thanksgiving film: Planes, Trains and Automobiles. The 1987 classic starring John Candy and Steve Martin brightens up the UB home with laughs and smiles and heart. If your unable to rent or purchase the film by Turkey Day here is a condensed version for your enjoyment...Happy Thanksgiving! (Help from In addition this year here is a link to the Top 10 scenes from TPA and here is the link to Roger Ebert's review..."This is the only movie our family watches as a custom, most every Thanksgiving."

The story revolves around advertising salesman Neal Page trying to get home from New York City to Chicago two days before Thanksgiving. While trying to catch a plane he runs into traveling shower curtain ring salesman.

Del: I know you don't I? I'm usually very good with names but I'll be damned if I haven't forgotten yours. Neal: You stole my cab. Del: I never stole anything in my life. Neal: I hailed a cab on park avenue this afternoon and before I could get in it. You stole it.

Del: You're the guy who tried to get my cab. I knew I knew you! You scared the bejesus out of me. Come to think of it it was easy to get a cab during rush hour. Neal: Forget it. Del: I can't forget it. I am sorry. I had no idea it was your cab. Let me make it up to you. How about a nice hot dog and a beer. Neal: No thanks. Del: Just a hot dog then. Neal: I'm very picky about what I eat. Del: Some coffee? Milk? Soda? Tea? Life Savers? Slurpee? Neal: Sir, please. Del: Just let me know. I'm here. I knew I knew you!

Neal: Eh, look, I don't want to be rude, but I'm not much of a conversationalist, and I really want to finish this article, a friend of mine wrote it, so... Del: Don't let me stand in your way, please don't let me stand in your way. The last thing I want to be remembered as is an annoying blabbermouth... You know, nothing grinds my gears worse than some chowderhead that doesn't know when to keep his big trap shut... If you catch me running off with my mouth, just give me a poke on the chops...

Del (while taking off his shoes): Woah...heh heh, my dogs were barking today!

Del: Sixbucks and my right nut says were not landing in Chicago. (They land in Wichita, Kansas)

Neal: What's the flight situation? Del: Simple. There's no way on earth we're going to get out of here tonight. We'd have more luck playing pickup sticks with our butt-cheeks than we will getting a flight out of here before daybreak. Neal: I guess we'll find out soon enough. Del: Yeah, but by the time the airline cancels this flight, which they will sooner or later, you'd have more of a chance to find a three-legged ballerina than you would a hotel room. Neal: Are you saying I could be *stuck* in Wichita? Del: I'm saying you *are* stuck in Wichita.

Del sets up a hotel and a cab ride in Wichita...They arrive at the Braidwood Inn...where they meet the owner...Gus...Gus: Del Griffith! How the hell are ya? Del: Well, I'm still a million bucks shy of bein' a millionaire. [Both laugh] Del: Gus, I'd like you to meet an old friend of mine. This is Neal Page from Chicago. Neal, this is Gus Mooney. Neal: Hi. Gus: Glad to meet you, Nick.

Neal: You know everything is not an anecdote. You have to discriminate. You choose things that are funny or mildly amusing or interesting. You're a miracle! Your stories have NONE of that. They're not even amusing ACCIDENTALLY! "Honey, I'd like you to meet Del Griffith, he's got some amusing anecdotes for you. Oh and here's a gun so you can blow your brains out. You'll thank me for it." I could tolerate any insurance seminar. For days I could sit there and listen to them go on and on with a big smile on my face. They'd say, "How can you stand it?" I'd say, "'Cause I've been with Del Griffith. I can take ANYTHING." You know what they'd say? They'd say, "I know what you mean. The shower curtain ring guy. Woah." It's like going on a date with a Chatty Cathy doll. I expect you have a little string on your chest, you know, that I pull out and have to snap back. Except I wouldn't pull it out and snap it back - you would. Agh! Agh! Agh! Agh! And by the way, you know, when you're telling these little stories? Here's a good idea - have a POINT. It makes it SO much more interesting for the listener! Del: You wanna hurt me? Go right ahead if it makes you feel any better. I'm an easy target. Yeah, you're right, I talk too much. I also listen too much. I could be a cold-hearted cynic like you... but I don't like to hurt people's feelings. Well, you think what you want about me; I'm not changing. I like... I like me.

My wife likes me. My customers like me. 'Cause I'm the real article. What you see is what you get.

[Waking up after sharing the same bed on the motel] Neal: Del... Why did you kiss my ear? Del: Why are you holding my hand? Neal: [frowns] Where's your other hand? Del: Between two pillows... Neal: Those aren't pillows!

Neal: Did you catch that Bears game?

A midnight thief breaks into the room stealing their money...Del: What? Neal: You know goddamn well what! Del: I'm sorry I don't Neal: I had over 700 dollars in here. Del: I didn't touch your dough Neal. I'm a lot of things but I'm not a thief. Neal: Well you went into my stuff last night right? Del: I didn't take your money! and I don't care for the accusation. Neal: Well I had over 700 dollars in here and you went into my wallet for pizza. Just maybe when you went into my stuff you had to... Del: [Places his wallet on the table] Count it! Neal: Oh like you keep it in there if you stole it. Del: There's 263 dollars in there. If there's a dollar more then you can call me a thief. Just count it. Neal: [finds Del's wallet empty as wel] Empty. Del: WHAT? [Looks thru his wallet] Del: We were robbed! Neal: [Sarcastically] Do you think so?

Waiting for a ride to the train Stubville...They are forced to ride in the back of a flat bead truck for almost an hour in the freezing cold...Neal: [riding in back of pickup truck in freezing cold] What do you think the temperature is? Del: One.

At the train station Neal and Del part ways, but when the train dies outside Jefferson City they are reunited...

Del: You're in a pretty lousy mood, huh? Neal: To say the least. Del: You ever travel by bus before? [Neal shakes his head] Del: Hmm. Your mood's probably not going to improve much.

Del: I guess this is probably a good time as any to tell you this. Our tickets are only good to St. Louis. St. Louis to Chi-town is booked tighter than Tom Thumb's ass.

So Del is forced to sell his shower curtain rings for some extra cash...he pawns them off as specialized ear rings...Meanwhile Neal decides it is time to cut the "annoying" Del loose, and again they go their separate ways...Neal heads back to the airport to rent a car, but gets dropped off in an empty lot...He then has to walk back several miles down the highway and across a runway where he is greeted by the Marathon agent in the funniest scene in the film...Below, is the exact quote, but due to the profanity you must be 17+ to read...Below is a photo of Edie McClurg from Ferris Bueller's Day Off, she plays the Marathon employee...

Car Rental Agent: [cheerfully] Welcome to Marathon, may I help you? Neal: Yes. Car Rental Agent: How may I help you? Neal: You can start by wiping that f*cking dumbass smile off your rosy f*cking cheeks! Then you can give me a f*cking automobile: a f*cking Datsun, a f*cking Toyota, a f*cking Mustang, a f*cking Buick! Four f*cking wheels and a seat! Car Rental Agent: I really don't care for the way you're speaking to me. Neal: And I really don't care for the way your company left me in the middle of f*cking nowhere with f*cking keys to a f*cking car that isn't f*cking there. And I really didn't care to f*cking walk down a f*cking highway and across a f*cking runway to get back here to have you smile at my f*cking face. I want a f*cking car RIGHT F*CKING NOW! Car Rental Agent: May I see your rental agreement. Neal: I threw it away. Car Rental Agent: Oh boy. Neal: Oh boy what? Car Rental Agent: You're f*cked!

Cab Dispatcher: Where are you going? Neal: Chicago. Cab Dispatcher: Chicago? Neal: Yeah. Cab Dispatcher: Don't you know you're in St. Louis? Neal: Yes I do. Cab Dispatcher: Why don't you try the airlines? It's faster and you get a free meal. Neal: If I wanted a joke, I'd follow you into the john and watch you take a leak. (Neal gets punched out and almost run over by Del, who rented a car).

Del picks up Neal, and after the 2nd funniest moment in the film where Del pins himself to the driver's seat and is forced to drive with his knees, they get in a near fatal accident after they end up going the wrong way on the highway...[another driver is trying to alert them that they're driving on the wrong side of the highway] Neal: He says we're going the wrong way... Del: Oh, he's drunk. How would he know where we're going?

Of course, Del's cigarette sets the car on fire...When Neal begins to laugh at Del for finally screwing himself, he discovers that Del used Neal's credit card to get the car...[Neal and Del are watching their car burning and laughing] Neal: How could you rent the thing without a credit card anyway? I mean you could but how could you? Del: Oh I gave this gal behind the counter a set of shower curtain rings. [laughs] Neal: You can't rent a car with shower curtain rings Del. Del: [Stops laughing] Well... your dinner's club card wound up in my wallet and I just... Neal: You STOLE it! Del: Not exactly. Neal: You stole it! I knew you stole it. You stole the card and then you rented a car and you burned it up! I knew you stole it. Del: No I didn't! I found it in my wallet! I thought maybe you put it there. Neal: WHY WOULD I PUT IT THERE? Del: Kindness. Neal: KINDNESS! KINDNESS! You stole it! He stole it! Del: No I didn't. I was going to send you the card back. With whatever the rental car charge was. Plus interest. But you didn't give me your address. You just ditched me! I had no cards. I had no money. I had nothing! Neal: [Grabs Del] Give it back! Del: I can't! Neal: Why not? Del: Because! Neal: Because why? Del: Because when we stopped to gas up. I put the card in your wallet. [Neal's wallet is in the glove compartment in the now burning car] Del: You're not mad at me are you? Neal: [Punches Del in the stomach and trips over his trunk]

They drive the burned out car to a motel, where Neal is forced to paun his watch and a little money to get a room for the night...Del is a little short: Del: I've got two dollars and a Casio. Hotel Clerk: I'm afraid I'm going to have to say goodnight...

Neal finally caves and lets Del stay in his room, rather than sleep out in the car. They share a few laughs and a toast to their wives...Del: Was that seat hot or what? I feel like a big Whopper. Turn me over, I'm done and ready. I'm afraid to look at my ass. There'll be grill marks.

State Trooper: What the hell are you driving here? Del: We had a small fire last night, but we caught it in the nick of time. State Trooper: Do you have any idea how fast you were going? Del: Funny enough, I was just talking to my friend about that. Our speedometer has melted and as a result it's very hard to see with any degree of accuracy exactly how fast we were going.

Del: If you impound our car, I'm going to be unable to get my friend here home for Thanksgiving dinner. (Of course the trooper impounds the car).

Del arranges a ride to Chicago in a tractor trailer, however, they can't ride up in the cab...

Finally after two days of hell, Neal and Del arrive in Chicago. After a tearful goodbye Neal boards the L for home...but one thing is bothering him...the way Del spoke about his wife and his home...[Neal remembering:] Del: I haven't been home in years.

Neal goes back to the L station, to find Del sitting alone. Del doesn't have a home and his wife has been dead for years. Moments later we see Neal and Del walking up to Neal's home. The two men have learned, together, that the most important things on Thanksgiving, and in life, are being with the ones you care about. Happy Thanksgiving to all...


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