A Nasty Affair at the Burami Oasis
by Spike Milligan and Larry Stephens
Greenslade: This is the BBC Home Service
Fx: Flatulence effects
Milligan: Excuse me, <giggles> excuse me, what is the price of sliced ham, per portion?
Greenslade: I really couldn't say.
Greenslade: Err, yes, well now, this is the BBC Home Service, had you been alive, at 3am on the 3rd of Autumn 1956, and switched on your wireless, you would have heard, this...
Greenslade: It wasn't much of a program, was it? If you had tuned in at nine o'clock, you would have heard...
Fx: beep beep beep, clump, beep beep, honk
Sellers: Good morning, here is the news. We regret to announce, that the Burami Oasis situation has deteriorated. The British garrison is under constant attack from Sheik Rattle And Roll. Sheik Rattle And Roll you will recall was sent down from Audlin College, Oxford, for attacking the British garrison there. Service Chief's have called up the following classes: Upper, Middle and Lower. They will report to their nearest, at their earliest.
Seagoon: Yes, dear listeners, that same morning...
Fx: "It's a long way to Tipperary" slowly being sped up
Seagoon: I received my papers. I read the sports page and reported for duty. Hup!
Fx: fanfare, thud
Seagoon: Neddie Seagoon, reporting for duty, sir!
Grytpype: We'll never win, a-hem, erm. Name?
Seagoon: Yes please.
Grytpype: With or without?
Grytpype: I see. Now then Seagoon, what made you join the army?
Seagoon: An armed escort, and two military policemen.
Fx: scribbling noises
Grytpype: <writing> "Patriotic volunteer". Now what were you in civilian life?
Seagoon: I was an admiral in the Royal Navy.
Grytpype: I say! You've left a well paid job.
Seagoon: Yes! That's why I'm here! There must be some mistake!
Grytpype: There must be. You an Admiral? By Jove, yes...
Seagoon: What what what what what what what what what what what what what what what what what what? How dare you insult a man wearing the Queen's open neck shirt, flannelled trousers, flat cap, and boots?
Grytpype: I'm so sorry, I beg your pardon.
Seagoon: You don't seem to realise that I've served on the H.M.S. Thespus since my father died. You see the H.M.S. Thespus is a family business, father put it in his wife's name.
Grytpype: What was her name?
Seagoon: H.M.S. Thespus
Grytpype: What was her maiden name?
Seagoon: The Arm of Bell.
Grytpype: How she must have suffered.
Seagoon: What what what what what what what what?
Grytpype: Relax Admiral Seagoon
Seagoon: <over> bwark bwark bwark bwark. <chicken type noises>
Grytpype: We know you're a Naval man, that's why we sent for you, you see the Army is desperately short of sailors.
Seagoon: I'm sorry to hear that. We had a terrible shortage of soldiers in the Navy.
Grytpype: Snap. Now Admiral, you don't mind my calling you by your first name?
Seagoon: Touche. Fred Touche.
Grytpype: Well, Admiral Fred, the garrison at Burami Oasis, is under constant siege. Now there's only one way to deal with these turbaned devils of brown.
Grytpype: We're going to, what a minute, wait for it,we're going to send a GUNBOAT.
Fx: thunderous cheers, leading into "Land of Hope and Glory"
Seagoon: Yes it was action at last, That night I called the Chiefs of Army, Navy, and NAAFI, to hear my plan of attack.
Voices: Mutter, rhubarb, rhubarb, etc
Seagoon: Gentlemen! I have here a statue of the situation at the Burami Oasis.
Milligan: Thank you.
Seagoon: The Arabs, as you can see, are attacking our garrison at night only,
Milligan: Arroow. Does this mean that our troops are fighting in their pajamas?
Seagoon: I fear so.
Sellers: Gad! It must be hell out there!
Seagoon: Any questions?
Sellers: Yes. Can't we arrange for the Arabs to attack in the daytime?
Seagoon: No. They charge twice as much to attack in the day. After sundown, it's only two and six a battle.
Greenslade: Sir, er, would it not be worth the extra costs? So that our men could be spared the indignity, of fighting in their night attire?
Milligan: Yes right.
Seagoon: Gentleman. I have overcome that difficulty, with a cunning move. Heh heh heh heh. Our troops now wear battle dress at night, and pajamas in the daytime.
Voices: Bravo. <mutters of agreement>
Seagoon: Any more questions?
Milligan: Yes, could you tell me the price of sliced ham, per portion?
Seagoon: So then gentlemen, intelligence tells us the reasons for these attacks are, the Burami garrison is to play football next month.
Voices: What a devilish plan! <agreement>
Seagoon: There's more to come Jim! The attack, the idea of the attack, the idea of the attack is to tire our men, so as to guarantee an Arab football victory.
Voices: Shame! Devilish!
Seagoon: Fear not!
Voices: Devilish plan, fear not.
Seagoon: Tonight, the Navy is on the march! Quickly MARCH! Left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right left right. Left.
Sellers: Yes, that night the H.M.S. Thespus, forty two thousand tons, was broken up into four inch squares, and packed into crates, cunningly marked, "Date fertilizer, this way up".
Moriarty: Sapristi reeking the pallow halliday. Did you hear that Grytpype, they're sending a battleship to the Burami Oasis. Ooooooooo, pa wa, pa wa! Paaa waaaoooo oooooaaaooowww.
Grytpype: Stop sweating Moriarty, you steaming French nit!
Grytpype: The Oasis is only ten feet long, they'll never get a battleship in it!
Moriarty: They could stand it up on one end...
Grytpype: The British don't operate that way.
Moriarty: Nonsense! I've seen them walking to work like that.
Grytpype: Have you really? Well then I shall have to speak to our agent in Burami Oasis immediately. <shouting> Hello Burami Oasis?
Ellington: <in wings> Helloooooo mate!
Grytpype: Shhush! Don't raise your voice, you might be overlooked! Where are you standing?
Ellington: <in wings> Oooon my feet!
Grytpype: Are they disguised?
Ellington: <in wings> Yes!
Grytpype: Splendid! On no account let them use a telephone.
Ellington: Yall toola hoola dingle.
Grytpype: Because, you fool, another foot is tapping it! Now listen carefully, do you know what the British are up to?
Ellington: Yeah, they're up to the end of 1956.
Grytpype: Blast! That mean's they've caught us up, quick Moriarity, put up a calender for 1958, that'll give us a two year lead!
Ellington: Oooh, me warn you! If Arab football team no beat British garrison team, you get no more money. Good bye.
Grytpype: I didn't like the sound of it Moriarty, we must get to Burami Oasis at once. Now hand me that boat, and unwrap Max Geldray.
Bluebottle: Oh hello boy...
Max Geldray - "When you're Smiling"
Greenslade: The increasingly sordid afair at Burami Oasis, Part Human. For dancing enthusiasts, the rest of the show will be played in slow foxtrot time. Over now to the beleaguered garrison at Burami.
Fx: beleaguered fighting noises
Milligan: Argh, Major, Major Bloodnok! The Arabs are attacking for the first time in this series! Arsenal three, Tottenham one. Hooray.
Bloodnok: What? Arrrrrioioooaaoowww. Ooooiiiiaaaaooooww. Oooh! That's better. Oh, oohohoho. Excuse me Bombay Biddy my dear I, I can't understand Arabs attacking in the daytime. They'll, they'll never learn the tango this way. Oh dear!
Seagoon: Sir, sir, there's an Arab riding down on us on a flaming stallion!
Bloodnok: Watch your language!
Seagoon: English sir, what's yours?
Bloodnok: The same! Interpreter, you can go home.
Throat: Right mate!
Seagoon: There's the flaming Arab.
Bloodnok: Mind your language! There may be sensitive Scots Guardsmen present!
Flowerdew: S'all right, I don't mind really, honestly, it's quite all right.
Bloodnok: Sellers! How dare you change your voice from mine into his for one joke only! Now I shall show these turbanned wogs of brown who's master of this oasis! Abdul hand me my...
Fx: knock knock knock knock knock knock knock
Bloodnok: It's a lie. It's a lie! We're just good friends I tell you! Get out the back way dear! Ohh! Mind the thunderbox will you? Oohhh!
Fx: n-n-knock knock knock knock knock knock knock
Ellington: Open up! Cor blimey! Or I smash my fist down!
Bloodnok: Oooohhh! It's Sheik Rattle and Roll! Ohh, Abdul, hand me my blacking up cards disguise kit will you?
Fx: knock knock knock knock knock knock knock knock
Bloodnok: Ooohh! Just a moment Mr. Roll, erm, my wife isn't dressed yet.
Ellington: <in wings> How long she going to be mate?
Bloodnok: I'll em, I'll em, write to her in London and find out. Where's my pen?
Fx: typewriter sounds
Bloodnok: <over> "Dear Volumnia, I am writing to find out how long, you will take before..."
Fx: door being broken down
Ellington: You bamboola mate!
Bloodnok: How dare you im bamboola in my tent. Wait a moment! Nadger me standing load, you're not Sheik Rattle and Roll! You look like Ray Ellington!
Ellington: I am! Me forced to take extra parts. Need money. Married recently.
Bloodnok: I understand! I understand, oohh ho ho hoho, ohho hoho! Me married myself! Ohh hohoho!
Ellington: Me done better! Me married my girl. More fun!
Bloodnok: Ooohhhh hohohoh! You naughty imbalatoola you!
Fx: telephone rings
Bloodnok: Ooooohhaahoho! Ohh, oh, what what what? Er, hello?
Greenslade: <other end of phone> The nasty affair at the Burami Oasis, part four.
Bloodnok: Right, reverse the charge please. Now, erm, Sheik, state your business.
Ellington: You four week behind with rent.
Bloodnok: What!? Nonsense! Get out of my tent, or I'll call the manager!
Ellington: You no bluff me! Look, your rent book. Three pound ten owing.
Bloodnok: What? I can get an oasis down the road for half that! Look here in the evening wog mail, look!
Bloodnok: "reading" "To let, self contained oasis, third floor, share hareem. Twelve and six. Suit cowardly British garrison". There you are!
Ellington: Me don't wish to know that.
Ellington: Me want my back rent. Me behind in installments, on sun lamp.
Bloodnok: What? You steaming son of the sands. I know! Abdul! hand me my British military-type saxophone now!
Ellington: Stop Bloodnok! Stop! You win! You got bigger bore saxophone than me, and dum dum music. But, I reek revenge, soon! Gidup!
Fx: a chicken galloping off to the distance
Bloodnok: He's not so well off, riding his dinner!
Fx: Epic type fanfare
Seagoon: Yes, immediately on arrival at the oasis, we began to open the crates, having first disguised ourselves as chickens.
Fx: knock knock scrape bwark bwark bwark!
Seagoon: You can't be too careful, pardon me, woaaa bwark bwark bwark bwark bwark bwark bwaaaark bwark bwark bwark bwaaaaark bwark bwark bwark
Flowerdew: Pardon me sir, I think somebody's overacting.
Flowerdew: We've just found an egg.
Seagoon: What what what what what what what what what what bwark bwark bwark bwark bwark-bwark? Then there's an impostor amongst us! I'll find him. Men! Assume your own voices and from the left, number!
Seagoon: That's him! March that chicken away!
Chicken: Bwark, bwark bwark bwark bwark!
Greenslade: That night, by the light of the Araby-type moon, they began to assemble the giant battleship, prior to launching it in the oasis. A master technician was in charge.
Fx: clink clink, clink clink, clink
Eccles: Wooaaa, foot and mouth with me... Ahhh the dustbins of Rome... It's ok folks, I ain't the master technician. Ahahahaha!
Bluebottle: Nooo! I am the master technician!
Eccles: Wait a minute 'Bottle, how long have you been a master tung-a-tunk-a-nikon?
Bluebottle: I'm not going to tell you Eccles.
Eccles: O-K Bot-tle, ok, don't tell me, by the dustbins of Rome...
Bluebottle: Oh wait a minute, don't leave me here in the dark! I tell you!
Eccles: I don't want to know!
Bluebottle: <in wings> Come back! Eccles! Eccles! Come. Where are you?
Eccles: I'm here.
Bluebottle: Oohh! Eccles I'm so glad you're here.
Eccles: ... you got more applause than me...
Seagoon: <angry gibbering>
Eccles: ... I don't like - he got more clapping than me...
Seagoon: I, I, I don't wish to know that. Thank you. Now then men... Men!
Bluebottle: <garbled arguments>
Eccles: What? <raspberry> to you!
Seagoon: MEN! We've got half an hour till dawn.
Bluebottle: Thanky ou Captain!
Seagoon: Shut up Bluebottle.
Eccles: Shut up Bluebottle.
Bluebottle: Shut up Eccles!
Eccles: Shut up Eccles.
All three: Shut up <name>.
Seagoon: Please, now...
Eccles: Shut up.
Seagoon: We've got till dawn, to assss, to assemble the battleship and launch it in the oasis. Ready? GO!
Fx: various odd shipbuilding-type noises
Seagoon: Right! Flowerdew?
Flowerdew: Yes sir?
Seagoon: Run up a flag.
Flowerdew: I'll get the sewing machine sir, yes.
Seagoon: Yes, dear listeners, there she is. Now, to get her into the water. Eccles?
Eccles: Shut up! Oh, Yeah?
Seagoon: You lift the sharp end, you take the blunt end. I'll be on the bridge. Somebody's got to steer, ahem. Now, together, lift!
Eccles and Bluebottle: Oooooohh, eeeee.
Eccles: <in wings> Ehhh 'Bottle!? You lifting your end?
Bluebottle:'Course I'm lifting.
Eccles: <in wings> Ohh. I'd better lift my end then.
Bluebottle:You ain't half a rodden swine you are! Unhh.
Eccles: <in wings> ...got more clapping than me.
Bluebottle: Eeeeehhh. Ooohhh. Eeeeaaaooo. Ooooo. All this strain-inge can harm a lad you know? Eeeee.
Fx: dropping and breaking noise
Bluebottle: Ooohh! My knees have fallen off.
Seagoon: Never mind, lad, here.... Here.....<Secombe laughs> Here, have a fresh pair. I always, <Secombe laughs> I always carry them since that dreadful affair at the Mister Fresh contest 1956. Now come on, lift!
All: <lifting> Eeeeeoooooh!
Greenslade: Ladies and gentlemen, with only two men to carry the battleship, an unexpected time lapse has occurred. To fill it, Ray Ellington, will, spon.
Ray Ellington- "Meanwhile..."
Fx: fanfare, leading into seagull noises
Greenslade: Once afloat in the oasis, the battleship dropped anchor. All sailors on board, were cunningly disguised as Arabs.
Wolfit: Just before dawn, two thousand Arabs, cunningly disguised as sailors, crept up to the oasis...
Fx: Booom! type noise
Bluebottle:<in wings> Captain! Captain! Wake up.
Seagoon: What what what what? <smacks lips, tries to wake up>. How dare you wake me up when I'm on duty?
Bluebottle:Captain, we have been runned aground.
Bluebottle:Yes! It's true! Them naughty Arabs, tooked all the oasis water away in wog bottles!
Seagoon: The Burami Oasis dry, nonsense! Haha! Eccles?
Eccles: <in wings> Sir?
Seagoon: Dive over the side!
Eccles: <in wings> Ok!
Fx: clump clump clump clump clump clump clump clump clump clump clump clump clump clump thud
Eccles: <in wings> Owww! Come on in, the sand's lovely and warm!
Seagoon: Needle nardle noo, isotopes feroo, then it's true! Shipwrecked in an oasis! Man the pumps, boots, and plimsoles! Lower the lifeboats!
Fx: people stampeding and screaming
Seagoon: Don't panic! I'm the captain of this shipwreck. Any panicking to be done, I'll do it.
Milligan: Pardon me, can you tell me the price of smoked ham, per small portion?
Seagoon: Twenty seven and six.
Fx: gunshot type bang
Minnie Bannister: Ohhh min-ma-middle-doh. Maaoohh ohhh oooo ooeeooooo yiddledoh. Ummm paa, what time do we get to Margate Pier, young man?
Seagoon: What? A woman on board a British battleship? I must court marshall myself. Admiral Seagoon?! Shun!
Fx: people standing to attention
Seagoon: Admiral Seagoon? Yes, sir? You are charged with having a Minnie Bannister on board your ship, is that true? It's a lie! Case dismissed! Thankyou! Now we must recover that water from the Arabs to refloat this ship. FULL SPEED A-HEAD!
Fx: anchor being raised, various shouting, ship's horn
Greenslade: Cynical listeners may question the possibility of sailing a battleship on sand. Meantime, at the Arab fortress of Rasher el Bacon...
Fx: Arab dance music
Grytpype: Nice little fort you've got here, Sheik.
Ellington: Yes, just a little thing my wife ran up.
Grytpype: You dance divinely?
Moriarty: Excuse me Grytpype, there's a battleship outside to see you.
Grytpype: Anyone we know?
Moriarty: I don't know sir, but he's wearing a turban.
Grytpype: Then it's one of ours. Come in.
Fx: door opening
Seagoon: Steady with the boys, turn it left, the other way round...
Eccles: Ok, right.
Seagoon: ...get the guns facing him.
Seagoon: Right! Pull the blanket off.
Eccles: <pulling the blanket off> Uhh!
Seagoon: Hands up.
Grytpype: Damn! Trapped by a brilliant strategem, and a common all-garden forty four thousand ton battleship.
Seagoon: Right, Colonel Thynne! You traitor! Hand over the water of the Burami Oasis!
Grytpype: Seagoon! Drop that battleship. One step nearer and my men will drink the Burami Oasis!
Seagoon: You wouldn't dare!
Grytpype: No? Men! Uncork bottles!
Fx: bottles being uncorked
Grytpype: There, Seagoon, they're ready to drink.
Moriarty: Stale mate? It was fresh this morning mate!
Seagoon: So we faced each other. The Arabs with the precious bottles Oasis water, poised at their lips...
Seagoon: ...and we covering them with the sixteen inch guns of our battleships...
Seagoon: ...I had to think of something.
Seagoon: Diana Dors,no, no, an adjustable spanner, no, a sink pump, no, Diana Dors, no, no, a telephone, that was it, a telephone
Fx: telephone rings
Bloodnok: <on phone> Bloodnok here.
Bloodnok: <on phone> Shush! Don't raise your voice, it might be seen. I say, Seagoon... something terrible has happened, I've been robbed of twenty thousand gallons of gin!
Seagoon: Where was it?
Bloodnok: <on phone> In the Burami Oasis!
Bloodnok: <on phone> In the Burami Oasis! Yes! Years ago, I drained all the water out, and filled it up with gin, on account of the shortage, you know.
Seagoon: Thank you.
Fx: phone being slammed down
Seagoon: Hah hah hah! Gin? They'll never win the football match now! Hahahaha! Colonel Thynne! We're coming to get that water! Drink it if you dare! Men, forward!
Grytpype: All right, drink.
Seagoon: Yes dear listeners, without knowing it, the fools were drinking twenty thousand gallons of neat gin.
Fx: crowd noises / cheering
Seagoon: Ha haha! Now for the football match.
Fx: crowd noises
Seagoon: Sure enough that evening, the Arab football team, staggered onto the field, in no condition to play. Ha! The result of the match was a forgone conclusion.
Greenslade: British garrison twelve, drunken Arabs sixty eight. Which erm, just goes to prove, that gin is a dashed good drink. Goodnight.
Fx: closing music
Greenslade: That was the Goon Show, a BBC recorded program featuring Peter Sellers, Harry Secombe Spike Milligan, with the Ray Ellington Quartet, and Max Geldray. The orchestra was conducted by Wally Stott. Script by Spike Milligan, and Larry Stevens. Announcer Wallace Greenslade. The program produced by Peter Eaton.
Original transcription by Christopher Thomas (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Corrections, additions and HTML by Kurt Adkins (email@example.com)