Diane Hine

(25 July 1956)

Downtown Cabbie (Season 1 - complete)


Cast:
Cecil Finchelstowe – a tycoon
Fay – a young heiress
Vic – a horse drawn cab driver
Rusty – Vic’s horse
Joe – Vic’s nephew

EPISODE 1 (5th Avenue – 72nd St) Clip clop clip clop……….
VIC: Where to Sir?
CECIL: Downtown.
VIC: Yes Sir. I appreciate your patronage Sir.
CECIL: Naturally.

EPISODE 2 (57th St) Clip clop clip clop………..
VIC: Business Sir?
CECIL: Yep, I diversified with some high-risk investments which I expect have doubled my fortune overnight. Must just check how stinking rich I am before tennis, lunch at my club and yachting this afternoon. Lastly, a tiresome dinner at Mother’s. No doubt she’s also invited a bevy of boring heiresses.
VIC: Ha-ha! Well Sir, I wish you best of luck.
My own poor mother’s ill. I pay for drugs
by working hard from dawn to well past dusk.
We love our humble lives though, don’t we Rust?
RUSTY: Neigh.
CECIL: Whatever.

EPISODE 3 (42nd St) Clip clop clip clop………….
RUSTY: Neigh!
VIC: Whoa Rusty! Some fool on a boneshaker’s veering
across our path. Where’s that crazy female steering!
RUSTY: Whinny!
CECIL: I know that fool! What a ridiculous and inappropriate outfit she’s wearing; some sort of knickerbockers-bloomers thing.
FAY: Sorry horse! Sorry driver! Thanks for not running me over. This isn’t a boneshaker though. It’s a bicycle with pneumatic tyres – the latest thing. I’m just getting the hang of it. Hello Cecil, I’m terribly embarrassed because I’ve had a secret crush on you forever.
CECIL: Yawn.
VIC: Boneshakers are a scourge aren’t they Rusty?
RUSTY: Two wheels bad, four wheels better.

EPISODE 4 (23rd St) Clip clop clip clop……..
CECIL: Each time we’re held up, Fay slips by on her bicycle. A tendril of her hair has come loose and is fluttering in the breeze with her boater’s grosgrain ribbons. Also, her legs are fetching in knickerbockers. We’re drawing level again. Now I can tell her how I feel. Fay! Fay! I love you. I’ve loved you for at least seven blocks.
FAY: Sorry Cecil, I did love you – eternally, but I’ve been discreetly watching the cab driver and admiring his horse handling skills; his rolled up sleeves; his lovely workmanlike arms and now I’ve fallen in love with him. Cabbie, will you elope with me? I’ve got stacks of money and your sweet horse could live with us in luxurious retirement.
VIC: I’ve been engaged for seven years to Milly.
I’ll not jilt her nor cause my mother shame
and though you are a toothsome, pretty filly,
my mind’s made up and Rusty feels the same.
RUSTY: Harrumph.

EPISODE 5 (Houston St) Clip clop clip clop……..
VIC: Whoa Rusty! That’s my nephew Joe running across the road.
JOE: Vic! Terrible news! A floor collapsed at the Finchelstowe factory and Milly’s been killed.
CECIL: Drat! That’s my factory.
JOE: Also, your mother’s dying. She’s asking for you.
VIC: I must go to her.
CECIL: Of course you must. Just drop me off first though or I’ll be late for tennis.
VIC: I will, though shock has swept away contentment,
and vitalized my latent class resentment.

EPISODE 6 (Wall St) Clip clop clip clop………….
CECIL: Stop here and wait for me driver.
FAY: Pleeassse marry me cabbie - what’s your name?
VIC: Between my past and present lies a schism;
I’m burning with fresh zeal for socialism.
My Milly was a saint and you’re a hussy.
I can’t love you but I could use your money
to run for Mayor and bring down capitalism.
So what’s your name and yea, I’ll wed you honey!
FAY: Yay!
CECIL (returns) : I’m devastated. Take me to the river.
VIC: Yes Sir!

EPISODE 7 (The Pier) Clip clop clip clop………
FAY: What’s wrong Cecil?
CECIL: Bad investment advice; previously I was stinking rich, but now I’m only fragrantly rich. Also, I’ve been rejected by you, the only girl I could ever love and that’s never happened before. I’ll throw myself off the end of the pier.
FAY: No wait! I’ll marry you because you need me more than he does. Also, subconsciously I’m shallow and worry about what my friends would think of me marrying into a lower social stratum, but I’ll secretly love the cab driver – eternally.
CECIL: Darling!
VIC: I’m thwarted! How I loathe the status quo.
The upper crust are all corrupt and fusty.
I’ll not rest til I’ve ruined Finchelstowe
and slept with his new wife – what say you Rusty?
RUSTY: All sequels are treacly, but some sequels are more faecal than others. Now shut up and kiss me comrade.

Submitted: Wednesday, April 03, 2013
Edited: Friday, October 11, 2013

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Comments about this poem (Downtown Cabbie (Season 1 - complete) by Diane Hine )

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  • Kevin Patrick (4/16/2013 1:34:00 PM)

    This was comic genius, you reduced the drama to what it is a pantomime of human emotion, I got the synopses of the DVD from this, I've always been an Upstairs Downstairs fan myself. Can't wait for series 2! (Report) Reply

  • Captain Cur (4/13/2013 11:31:00 AM)

    Fortunes lost in carriage ride
    Falsity in rich lover's eye
    Milly's buried in rubble stone
    Vic is taxably again alone
    Fay's duplicitous wedding dress
    Cecil the bridegroom’s broken guest.
    Rusty, I am the loyal one
    the treacly sequel should be fun.
    A New York mile a minute,
    by Rusty…..
    great write Diane poignantly funny. (Report) Reply

  • Unwritten Soul (4/10/2013 6:25:00 AM)

    I like the story, and the characters involved really show something for readers feel, think and understand...it maybe a story but a story always has something...i like the end of Fay and Cecil, they found something while the end of Vic, to me its beyond our mind to understand the clearity of his mind..a nice write_Soul (Report) Reply

  • Danny Draper (4/7/2013 12:33:00 AM)

    A great concise ride of social mores and sensibilities and rising disquiet from those that do but will never overthrow the status quo, because things have to get done and someone has to do them. Fortunes come and fortunes go but there will always be work to be done and love the fickle pickle will enchant and destroy in devastatingly equal measures. Terrific, comrade terrific. (Report) Reply

  • Valsa George (4/6/2013 10:56:00 AM)

    Of all the characters here, I like Vic the cab driver! The journey across the Fifth Avenue is picturesquely drawn! But sorry I didn't get the implication! (Report) Reply

  • Thomas A Robinson (4/5/2013 7:37:00 AM)

    could be a social statement, like a falling tide as it ebbs all that is ugly is revealed in the bay. And twice a.day
    reality changes, high tide low tide, daytime night time, rich poor, and love. (Report) Reply

  • Valerie Dohren (4/4/2013 4:16:00 AM)

    Fascinating little story Diane - a talking horse, Mr Ed perhaps? Poses the question should one marry for love, money, or status. (Report) Reply

Read all 7 comments »

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