The Wonder Years - Transcript

Episode 114: "Summer"

Written by Sy Rosen
Transcribed by James Hogg
Edited and corrected by Peter Reynders


NARRATOR: I guess things never turn out exactly the way you planned. I know they didn't with me. Still like my dad used to say, "traffic's traffic; you go where life takes you." I remember a time, a place, a particular fourth of July, the things I saw in that decade of war and change. I remember how it was growing up among people and places I loved. Most of all I remember how it was to leave.

[Opening credits]

[various film clips from 1973]

NARRATOR: The summer of 1973 was a time of restless energy. The first generation to grow up on Sgt. Pepper was heading out into the world. Searching for truth, looking to find themselves. Having a blast. Me, that July I was working in my dad's furniture factory. Sanding the edges off about 500,000 pieces of wood per day.



WAYNE: Hey scrote! Pick up the slack will ya?

KEVIN: Shut up Wayne.

WAYNE: That's no way to talk to your supervisor.

KEVIN: You're not my supervisor.

WAYNE: If I'm not your supervisor, why am I wearing a jacket and a tie?

KEVIN: Got me.

WAYNE: Uh huh.

NARRATOR: In what had to rank as the dumbest career move in history I traded my job at Chong's Chinese for a future in sawdust. [JACK comes up to KEVIN]

JACK: Kevin, you're checking the machine after every load, right?

KEVIN: Right, dad.

JACK: And you're being careful?

KEVIN: Yeah, dad.

NARRATOR: The worst part was for some inexplicable reason everything my father did irritated the heck out of me. [JACK checks the machine]

KEVIN: Dad what are you doing?

JACK: Checking the machine.

KEVIN: I just told you I checked it.

JACK: I heard ya.

NARRATOR: And vice-versa.

KEVIN: So why did you ask me in the first place?

JACK: What did you say?

KEVIN: I didn't say anything.

JACK: Alright let's just get back to work. Pay attention to what you're doing.

KEVIN: I always pay attention. [KEVIN grinds the wood into the sander]

JACK: Uh huh

NARRATOR: Face it nothing was going right. My job, my future, my family, not to mention the last night I'd spent with my girl.



KEVIN: This song is really stupid. I mean what is someone going to do kiss an envelope or something?

WINNIE: Yeah I guess so.

KEVIN: Winnie, are you sure you want to do this?

WINNIE: Well it's a good job.

KEVIN: What being a lifeguard at some stupid resort?

WINNIE: Kevin, my uncle went through a lot of trouble to get me this job. Besides what's wrong with being a life guard?

KEVIN: What, nothing. (Sighs) Just you're going to be so far away, and...and...

NARRATOR: Of course what I wanted to say was how much I would miss her.

KEVIN: It's gonna be just so inconvenient.

WINNIE: Inconvenient?

KEVIN: Whose stupid idea was this anyway?

WINNIE: I think it was yours.

KEVIN: Mine?

WINNIE: You're the one who said we should spend the summer finding ourselves.

KEVIN: I didn't say that. What I meant was we should find ourselves but you know still be together. Uh, keep, our space, only not really.

NARRATOR: Yeah that was it in a nutshell.

WINNIE: Kevin, do we have to argue? This is our last night together. I'll think about you every minute.

NARRATOR: And well, putting it that way...

KEVIN: Me too.

NARRATOR: What was I worried about? We'd think about each other every minute.

WINNIE: Ah, I have to start looking for bathing suits [KEVIN looks at WINNIE with a surprised look]



JACK: Kevin! Kevin I told you to pay attention.

WAYNE: Safe hands make a safe factory.


KEVIN: Shut up butthead.


NARRATOR: Oh well so my plans for the summer had turned into carpenter's glue. At least I still had my loyal friends.

JEFF: [JEFF hurries to the table and sits down with open map] We're leaving.

KEVIN: What?

CHUCK: We're driving cross country. We take off in three days.

KEVIN: You're kidding!

JEFF: Well, we're going to New York, then New Orleans and then San Francisco.

CHUCK: This town is closing in on us

KEVIN: Great. I guess it's just me and you this summer.

PAUL: Yeah except uh I'm gonna be busy with advanced summer school courses.

JEFF: Oh yeah, I was going to do that too, but I decided to have a life.

KEVIN: Terrific. What am I supposed to do now?

JEFF: Well why don't you come with us?

CHUCK: Yeah, what do you say, Kev?

JEFF: Y-yeah, we'll be on the road.

CHUCK: Living by our wits.

JEFF: We'll go where ever we want to go.

CHUCK: Do what we want to do.

JEFF: If we want to wake up in Kansas City...

CHUCK: We'll wake up in Kansas City.

JEFF: Think about it...

NARRATOR: And faced with the call to the open road, the song of the high way, the lure of total irresponsibility

PAUL: You're dreamin' You're parents are never gonna let you go.

NARRATOR: There was really only one reply...

KEVIN: I'm in


JACK: You're out.

KEVIN: What do you mean? It'll be a great trip.

NORMA: Now where are they going exactly?

KEVIN: New York, New Orleans, San Francisco.

JACK: San Francisco.

WAYNE: Don't forget to put some flowers in your hair.

KEVIN: Look dad, I just think you don't understand. I mean this trip will be good for me, I'll be out on my own.

JACK: Forget it!


JACK: You wouldn't survive two seconds on your own.

KEVIN: Oh yeah?

JACK: What are you going to live on?

KEVIN: Hey, I got money saved up. And besides we'll be living on our wits.

WAYNE: [laughs]

JACK: Oh brother.

NORMA: You know honey, Karen's going to be flying in on the Fourth of July weekend and, I thought it would be a good chance for all of us to be together.

JACK: Look there's no sense discussing this any further, you're not going and that's final.

NARRATOR: Gees what was this a family, or a firing squad?

[KEVIN stands up and pounds the dinning table]

KEVIN: Ok, see I don't know why I asked you anyway. This is my life and it's my decision. Ok? And I'm going to do what I have to do.


[KEVIN is in front of his house putting his sleeping bag in CHUCK's car]

NARRATOR: And so three days later I got up at dawn...

JEFF: Thanks for letting us use your sleeping bag.

KEVIN: No problem.

NARRATOR: To say goodbye to my friends.

CHUCK: Hey we'll send you a postcard from New Orleans.

KEVIN: You're going to have a great time.

JEFF: Nah come on it won't be that good.

CHUCK and JEFF: Yes it will! [Laughing]

CHUCK: I keep thinking we're going to meet these two girls, and they're both going to fall in love with me.

KEVIN: Good luck.

JEFF: We're not eating until Saint Louis.

CHUCK: [Yells from car driving down the street] See ya.


NARRATOR: It came down to this, I'd been stranded... buried in the blue collar brigade

KEVIN: [on the phone in the factory] Winnie.

WINNIE: [WINNIE appears in a split screen on the phone at the pool] Kevin is everything ok?

KEVIN: Yeah, yeah I just wanted to talk to you. I really miss you.

WINNIE: Well, I really miss you too.

KEVIN: You do?

WINNIE: Of course I do.


GUY: Winnie!

NARRATOR: That's what I needed, a loving voice, a sympathetic ear...

KEVIN: How's the job?

WINNIE: Great!

KEVIN: It is?

WINNIE: Well its pretty good, you know there's a lot to do over here.

KEVIN: Oh that's good I'm really happy for you.

WINNIE: So how are things with you [man yells from pool "Hey Winnie", splashes water]

KEVIN: Working for my dad isn't exactly...

WINNIE: [to man in pool] Hey cut it out... quit splashing [someone yells "Winnie come on..."]

KEVIN: Winnie, what's going on?

WINNIE: Oh it's nothing Kevin. But I've got to get back to my job, ok?

KEVIN: Oh, yeah, sure, work.

WINNIE: I'll talk to you soon.

KEVIN: Sure, I just hoped...[WINNIE hangs up] Great. Just great.

NARRATOR: I don't know, maybe it was Winnie, or the noise, or the heat, but at that moment I felt like I was going to burst. [JACK sees KEVIN near the phone]

JACK: I don't believe it. What are you doing here?

KEVIN: I was just making a phone call

JACK: You're supposed to out there working, I can't leave you for one minute.

KEVIN: What's your problem?

JACK: What was that?

KEVIN: Dad get off my back!

JACK: What?

KEVIN: You're on top of me every second telling me what do with me life. Do this! Don't do that! I hate this job.

WAYNE: What's going on here

JACK: You know what your problem is?

KEVIN: Yeah, I can't stand it here.

JACK: Uh uh, you think you're too good for this job.

NARRATOR: And that's when it happened. I looked at those guys and all I saw was mediocrity, and hard work and being chained down for the rest of your life.

KEVIN: Yeah, that's right, that's right, maybe this job is good enough for you, but it's not good enough for me.

JACK: Fine. You don't want to work here, I don't want you here

NARRATOR: And after seventeen years of living under my fathers thumb...

KEVIN: Ok I quit, I'm out of here [KEVIN throws protective goggles on the floor]


NARRATOR: That next morning I took my life's savings of a hundred and thirty bucks and packed my bag. 

[KEVIN is in his room packing, NORMA is in the doorway]

NORMA: Honey, I wish you wouldn't do this.

KEVIN: I've gotta go.

NORMA: You really don't you know, you could just put that bag away.

KEVIN: I've got to be on my own. I've got to find myself.

NORMA: I know, but you can find yourself here. People don't realize it, but there's lots places you can find yourself. I mean you can go into a restaurant, lost, not knowing what you're doing, and all of a sudden you can find yourself.

NARRATOR: It was wise, and touching, and kind all at once...

NORMA: It can happen anywhere.

NARRATOR: It came from the heart of the woman who loved me, and raised me, and I could only think of one thing to say...

KEVIN: Mom I've got to get going [KEVIN zips up bag] I'll call when I get someplace.



[KEVIN starts car in driveway and drives down street.]

NARRATOR: All I knew was I was seventeen and on my way. I was gone and I didn't look back.

[KEVIN driving down a country road]

NARRATOR: Freedom, it was more that just a full tank of gas and a highway under my wheels. It was me on my own, with no one to answer to but call of summer, and fun. 



NARRATOR: Not that I'd taken off without a plan I knew where I was going.

PARKING ATTENDANT: Welcome to the Cascades, will you be staying?

KEVIN: Take care of my car [KEVIN hands keys to parking attendant]

PARKING ATTENDANT: Yeah, its a classic.

NARRATOR: Never mind that, this was perfect, fresh air, sunshine and of course...

KEVIN: Winnie! Winnie!

WINNIE: Kevin?



WINNIE: I can't believe you're here.

KEVIN: Me neither.

WINNIE: You just got in your car and drove all this way?

KEVIN: Well, yeah. I wanted to see you.

NARRATOR: It was what you might call a hero's welcome...



KEVIN: I mean, you're happy to see me, right?

WINNIE: Of course I'm happy to see you. I'm very happy to see you.

KEVIN: Good.

WINNIE: I just can't believe you're here that's all.

KEVIN: Yeah, well, things kind of blew up at home. I uh, I had a fight with my dad, and I kind of quit my job.

WINNIE: You did?

KEVIN: Yeah.

NARRATOR: Hey hey.

WINNIE: Kevin, that's awful.


KEVIN: Well not exactly. You know I thought that maybe we could be together and maybe I could get a job here.


KEVIN: Yeah. Maybe you could put a word in for me or something

WINNIE: Well maybe, but I don't really know anybody [several people walk past and greet WINNIE]

1ST BOY IN LOBBY: Hi Winnie, How ya doin'? See ya at the pool.

WOMAN IN LOBBY: How ya doin'?

2ND BOY IN LOBBY: See ya at the pool.

3RD MAN IN LOBBY: Hello Winnie!

NARRATOR: Hum... [WINNIE seems more popular than she led on]

KEVIN: Listen Winnie, if you don't want to do this

WINNIE: No. Of course I do. Maybe I could help. What kind of a job would you want?

KEVIN: It doesn't matter. You know I could be a life guard, or a caddie, or an assistant tennis coach, or you name it, what ever.



[KEVIN is working as a busboy]

KEVIN: Hey watch it!

NARRATOR: Tennis anyone? In another dazzling career move I'd gone from sweatshop lackey to bottom of the barrel busboy.

[KEVIN walks out of the kitchen with a tray with bread baskets. NICK walks past and grabs a roll.]


MR. DEXTER: Mr. Arnold, ready to get to work?

KEVIN: Yes sir.

MR. DEXTER: You have to set up all of these tables, got it?

[KEVIN walks away from MR. DEXTER, who follows behind]

KEVIN: Butthead.

MR. DEXTER: What did you say?

KEVIN: Butter, I brought some butter.

MR. DEXTER: Needleman, can't you do something about your uniform?

HOWIE: My tux is in the cleaners. [MR. DEXTER turns and walks away] Welcome to the Cascade resort and tennis club.

KEVIN: Thrilled.

HOWIE: You should always bring out three extra baskets of rolls. These people are like locusts.

KEVIN: Really?

CUSTOMER: Hey busboy! My coffee's cold.

MR. DEXTER: Needleman! You are batting zero today, buddy.

NARRATOR: Ok clearly this wasn't going to work. So maybe it was time to present my full resume.

KEVIN: [KEVIN walks across dinning room to MR.DEXTER] Listen, Mr. Dexter?

MR. DEXTER: Yes Arnold?

KEVIN: This job isn't exactly what I had in mind.

MR. DEXTER: Well they're digging a new septic tank out back. How are you with a shovel?

NARRATOR: On the other hand...

KEVIN: Never mind



NARRATOR: Maybe it was best to let sleeping dogs lie after all I hadn't come up here to investigate the wonders of plumbing. I'd come up here for just one reason. [KEVIN sees WINNIE] That would be it. [ERIC sits next to WINNIE and whispers in her ear. WINNIE laughs] Hum. Not that I was concerned or anything.

KEVIN: Winnie, hi.

WINNIE: Oh, hi Kevin. Kevin, this is Eric he's the head lifeguard here.

KEVIN: Hi, I'm the new golf pro.

ERIC: Oh that's a joke, right?

KEVIN: Yeah.

ERIC: I'm gonna go for a swim, ok?

WINNIE: I'll watch the pool.

KEVIN: And don't forget to take off your sunglasses.

ERIC: Gotcha

NARRATOR: Yeah, ten-four

KEVIN: So, this is the pool, huh? [Stands up on the side of the lifeguards chair]

WINNIE: [Blows whistle]

NARRATOR: Great, a woman with a whistle.

WINNIE: Listen Kevin, employees aren't really allowed around here during the day.

KEVIN: Sorry, [gets down from lifeguards chair] but uh I'll still see ya tonight, right?


KEVIN: Great.

WINNIE: Except, the lifeguards are kind of having this meeting by the lake, and I kind of promised that I...

KEVIN: Winnie, is it just my imagination, or am I spoiling your plans or something?

WINNIE: What are you talking about?

KEVIN: You know I came all the way up here to see you, and now I'm not gonna see you. You know I just feel like I'm getting in the way here.

WINNIE: No, it's not that.

KEVIN: Then what is it?

WINNIE: I was just really surprised to see you, and its really busy around here, you just gotta give me a chance to get used to it.

NARRATOR: Of course the way she said it, it sounded reasonable enough.

KEVIN: Ok, sure.

WINNIE: Thanks, I really appreciate it.

KEVIN: Yeah, well you know I gotta unpack tonight anyway. So I'll just hang out with the busboys, ok?



NARRATOR: So I hung out with the guys

KEVIN: [HOWIE is cutting his toes nails next to KEVIN's face] Howie, mind moving your feet a little

HOWIE: Yeah, no problem [moves feet in front of KEVIN]

NARRATOR: And what a crew they were.

NICK: Do you guys think I look a little like Steve McQueen, huh, what do you think?

MICKY: Oh yeah, I'm always getting you two mixed up. Hee hee hee.

NARRATOR: Yeah this was some fun, kind of like living in a zoo.

KEVIN: Hey, what do you guys do around here for fun?

NICK: Well there are lots of things to do.

MICKY: Needleman has a pile of magazines.

KEVIN: Is there anything else?

NICK: Yeah well, there's poker with the band.

HOWIE: But you don't want to play poker with the band.

MICKY: No you definitely don't want to play poker with the band



[KEVIN walks up to table in kitchen where the band are playing poker]

KEVIN: Mind if I sit in?

[All band members laugh]

BAND LEADER: You got money?

KEVIN: Yeah, sure.

BAND LEADER: Then make yourself comfortable. [Others laugh]

BAND MEMBER 3: Here we go!

BAND MEMBER 2: You want a Pepsi?

KEVIN: No thanks.

BAND MEMBER 3: Five card draw.

HOWIE: Do you know what you're doing? This is the band!

MICKY: These guys play for big stakes.

KEVIN: Yeah, yeah Don't worry.

BAND LEADER: Ten bucks.

NARRATOR: I mean hey, who did these jokers think they were dealing with here? Besides a chump with a pair of twos.

HOWIE: Oh man.

KEVIN: I'm in.

BAND LEADER: Ay ay como un pescadito.

BAND MEMBER 2: I raise you twenty.

MICKY: Oh gees.

NARRATOR: Obviously the merengue business was booming.

BAND LEADER: It's twenty to you kid.

HOWIE: Twenty to you.

BAND LEADER: I know, Howie.

NARRATOR: Ok, my manhood was on the line, such as it was, so...

KEVIN: I'm in.

MICKY: Ok Kevin.

BAND MEMBER 3: How many?

KEVIN: Give me three.

NARRATOR: After all I knew a little bit about cards.


NARRATOR: One lucky draw you're in the chips, or...

BAND MEMBER 1: Ten bucks.

NARRATOR: I could bluff.

KEVIN: I'll raise you twenty.

BAND MEMBER 4: [Speaks Spanish] I fold.

BAND MEMBER 2: El foldo.

BAND MEMBER 3: I fold.

BAND MEMBER 1: And I raise you twenty. What's it gonna be kid? You in or out?

NARRATOR: Like they say, when the going gets tough the tough get going.

KEVIN: I'll raise you twenty back.


KEVIN: Well what do you know, the pot is mine.

HOWIE: Ok Kevin [laughing]

MICKY: Way to go, Kev.



KEVIN: [dancing] I won, ha, yes

NARRATOR: And my dad said I couldn't survive. I was surviving just fine thank you. I was on my own and doing alright. There was just one more thing that could make this night perfect.

[Music Percy Sledge "When A Man Loves A Woman"]

KEVIN: [KEVIN walks down to the lake looking for WINNIE] Excuse me.

BOY: Huh?

KEVIN: Have you seen Winnie Cooper?

BOY: Winnie Cooper, yeah I think she's with Eric, right?

GIRL: Um yeah, Winnie and Eric are right over there.

KEVIN: Thanks.

[KEVIN sees WINNIE and ERIC kiss.]

Please mail to Peter if you find any errors, or if you have any comments or suggestions.

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