Buying a Cow (1908)
Short, Comedy · 1 January 1908
Mr. and Mrs. X, independent people, go for a walk in the country round about Paris, and perceiving some cows, which a man is milking in a field, and the weather being warm, Mrs. X desires a glass of milk. Hubby calls the milker, who comes to them. Madam drinks, finds the milk very good, and says to her husband, "What a pity it is that you cannot get such milk in Paris." Mr. X agrees. Suddenly it occurs to Madam that as she likes the milk so much, the only thing to be done is to buy the cow. Mr. X remonstrates loudly, but Madam will hear nothing; she wants a cow; she will have it. At last, after a discussion, Monsieur makes up his mind; he says to the man that he wants to buy one of these animals; after some parley the bargain is struck; there they are in possession of the cow. Monsieur leads it, Madam pushes it and hits it with her parasol, urging it along. Paris Duty: Mr. and Mrs. X, still dragging their cow, arrive at the barrier; an employee of the grant stops them entering, telling them that they must pay for bringing animals into Paris. Monsieur does this with a bad grace; then they resume their way. A Café: On the terrace are some people eating and drinking. Monsieur and Madam, with their cow, stop before the café; they are hot and thirsty and want to refresh themselves. They wish to enter the café with the animal, but the proprietor, on seeing these singular customers, will not let them in and signs to them to sit on the terrace. They sit down, after having taken care to tie their cow to a neighboring table. Unexpectedly, two lads unloose the cow, while Mr. and Mrs. X, on seeing their cow making good its escape, get up abruptly, turning over the table before them, and rush off in pursuit. During this time the boys hold their sides and laugh, and the proprietor, attracted by the noise, pursues his customers, so that he can make them pay their bill and for the breakage. Mr. X has overtaken his cow; he holds it by the tether; the café proprietor arrives. He pays and goes away. A Tramway Stopping-Place: Mr. and Mrs. X arrive with the animal. Mr. X attaches it to the tram, and prepares himself, followed by Mrs. X, to enter the car; but the ticket-collector is quite astonished to see the cow tied to the tram. He asks Mr. X if it belongs to him, and on his replying in the affirmative he tells him to take it off, and prevents him entering. Mr. X argues, loosens his cow, and goes away, followed by Madam. Mr. and Mrs. X stop; a cab passes, they hail it. Mr. X explains to the coachman that he is going to tie the cow behind, and that it will follow; the coachman accepts, then they get into the carriage, the vehicle starts and the cow follows. You see the cab pass, followed by the cow. Mrs. X leans over every minute to see if the animal is following, at one moment losing her equilibrium and rolling to the ground; she gets up, and rushes off in pursuit of the cab. She catches up and discusses with the coachman, reproaching him for not having stopped at the moment of the tumble. Finally the coachman gets down from his box, loosens the cow, and leaves the trio on the road. Mr. X, pulling Madam and pushing the cow, arrives before the house. They prepare to enter, but the servant appears and prevents them passing. A terrible argument ensues, during which two wicked scapegraces approach gently; one of them carries under his arm a little cardboard cow; the first detaches the cow, while the second ties the toy by the tether resting in the hands of Mr. X; then they escape, leaving the cow. Mr. and Mrs. X, arguing, perceive nothing, when all at once Mr. X turns round and sees the cardboard cow. General great astonishment. Mr. X takes up the toy at arm's length, and is completely astonished at the substitution. During this the servant holds his sides and laughs.
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