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Previous episode: Lucy Misses the Mertzes           Next episode: Lucy Raises Chickens

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PlotEdit

Not surprisingly, Lucy wants new furniture to put in her new house. Ricky tells her that she only can spend $500. So, Lucy excitedly goes furniture shopping with her new friend and neighbor, Betty Ramsey. The owner of the furniture store is a friend of Betty's, so he is able to give Lucy a 40% discount. Still, even with this big of a price cut, the furniture ends up costing over $3000! Lucy has nowhere to turn but to call the Mertzes in New York, who say that they'll come out to visit right away.

When Ricky hears the outrageous price of the furniture, he demands that Lucy take it back. Lucy doesn't want to hurt Betty's feelings, and Ricky is mad that Lucy has fallen under Betty's snobbish spell so quickly. When Betty comes over, Lucy tries to explain her way out of why the furniture needs to be returned, too embarrassed to admit that she can't afford it. Betty ends up thinking that Lucy doesn't like her taste. When Ricky goes over to talk to Betty's husband, Ralph, he finds that he, too, can't bring himself to admit that they can't afford the furniture. Ralph, in turn, also thinks that this is an insult to Betty's taste. The two men have a fistfight. Even Little Ricky gets into a my-father-can-beat-up-your-father brawl with young Bruce Ramsey. When the Mertzes arrive, they straighten everything out by admitting the truth- the Ricardos simply can't afford the furniture. Lucy ends up getting to keep all the furniture, though, because Ricky is going to do a musical show for Ralph that will pay $3500.

TriviaEdit

  • We learn that Betty Ramsey's husband's name is Ralph, and that her son's name is Bruce. Betty and Ralph Ramsey had been the names of Bob Weiskopf's old neighbors when he lived in Westport.
  • At the furniture store, Lucy mistakes the stock numbers for price tags, which is one reason she ran up such an astronomically high total.
  • Although both Mary Jane Croft and Frank Nelson had played a large amount of roles on the show up until this episode, this is the first time either of them have a long-standing character role.
  • When trying to make an excuse for why the furniture has to be returned, Lucy tells Betty that she thinks Chinese modern furniture would be better. If Lucy really had meant this, she could have taken Carolyn Appleby's season 3 Chinese modern furniture!
  • Speaking of Carolyn's Chinese modern furniture, which, by the way, was not present in the Applebys' apartment in episode #166, Carolyn didn't have any of the items Lucy describes to Betty as being the typical Chinese modern living room. This may be because some of the items in Lucy's description were more Japanese style than Chinese (i.e. lanterns and screens). Lucy also mentioned low black tables, bamboo mats, floor cushions, and a built-in mah-jong set. Too bad Carolyn didn't have a mah-jong set in her living room. The girls could have played mah-jong in episode #72 instead of bridge with Carolyn's old, sticky deck of cards!
  • The exact cost of the furniture is $3272.65. A bit over the $500 Ricky allowed Lucy to spend, don't you think?
  • The new furniture must have been obscenely expensive. Lucy spent over $3200 even WITH the trade-in money on her old furniture and the 40% discount Betty got her! We do learn that the living room furniture cost $1875.50 by itself. That's a total of over $29,000 in 2016 dollars! The living room furniture alone would cost over $16,500 today - and that's considering the 40% discount she got on the trade-in! Mighty expensive furniture, even in 1957! We do not know how much they paid for the house, but considering the cost of the furniture, the house must have been quite expensive - especially on a band leader's income. They paid $105/month rent for the apartment, or about $930/month in today's dollars. No telling what their house payment was, but penny-pinching Fred must have been astounded if he knew! No wonder they wanted to raise chickens for extra income!
  • The footstool Lucy throws in at the end of her living room furniture shopping cost $24.50
  • We learn that Ralph Ramsey is a title member of the Burton, Warshman, and Ramsey agency, which appears to be either a TV or advertising agency. We also learn that Ralph is a country club member and proposed the Ricardos' name for a membership application.
  • Desi Arnaz was the one who came up with the idea to have two couches back to back for the new living room furniture.
  • Desi made a dialogue error in this episode. Shortly after Lucy tells him the total cost of the furniture is $3272.65, he says that the total cost is $3292.95!
  • Starting with this episode and continuing through all of the country episodes, Lucy wears her hair shorter. Her bun is not nearly as poofy or long. She liked the way her hair looked in this style, but the sponsors didn't, so she quickly went back to her traditional bun.
  • This is the FIFTH set of furniture Lucy has had since the show started! Five sets of furniture in six years!
  • Most likely, had Lucy and/or Ricky admitted that they couldn't afford the furniture, the Ramseys wouldn't have believed them. Both Betty and Ralph emphasized what a good deal it was, how the price couldn't be the problem.
  • The piano was the only piece of furniture to survive the entire series.
  • The short back to back sofas would soon be replaced with longer ones.

QuotesEdit

  • Ricky: Look, honey, I don't think it's a good idea to get too friendly with the neighbors too fast.

Lucy: Why not? We're gonna be living here the rest of our lives. Why shouldn't we get friendly with the neighbors right away?

Ricky: That's just it- we ARE going to be living here for the rest of our lives, so I think that we should get chummy gradually. Lucy: Oh, well, maybe you can get chummy gradually. With me, it's instant chummy!

  • Lucy: (after expressing disgust at her furniture) Why don't you ask me what's the matter?

Ricky: I can't afford to ask you what's the matter!

  • Ricky: Alright, I guess we could afford ONE new thin'. What's it gonna be?

Lucy: One house full of furniture!

  • Lucy: (to Ricky) If you put some seeds in your [shaking] head, you could use it for a maraca!
  • Lucy: (about what she's allowed to spend) I know, $500. I have it engraved right here [on my forehead]!
  • Betty Ramsey: You know what we should do to [your old furniture]?

Lucy: Set fire to it?

  • Lucy: (caught looking for lamp price tag) Sometimes, at parties, our friends like to try on lampshades for hats. I was just making sure it was the right size.

Betty: Oh, Lucy, you're such a clown!

Lucy: Yeah, well...

  • Lucy: For instance, here's one [price tag] right here. See, this table is $10.62.

Betty: Oh, Lucy, there you go clowning! THose aren't price tags, they're stock numbers.

  • Betty: That price is fantastic.

Lucy: (horrified at high price) You can say that again!

  • Lucy: I sort of like to have furniture trickle in one at a time. You know, like a Chair-of-the-Month club.
  • Betty: We haven't even started on the den yet, dear.

Lucy: (mumbling under breath) Yeah, why not? What have I got to lose except my life?

Betty: What?

Lucy: Oh, there I go clowning again!

  • Betty: I'll bet Ricky raves when he sees this [new furniture]!

Lucy: He'll rave, alright!

  • Ethel: It's Lucy, and she's in trouble.

Fred: Quick- hang up!

  • Lucy: What happened to Fred?

Ethel: Oh, he got light-headed just thinking about somebody spending $3000.

  • Lucy: Oh, you're not gonna say, "I told you so"?

Ricky: Yes, I am!

Lucy: Well, I just thought I'd ask.

  • Lucy: Do you know how much money we're saving [with Betty's 40% discount]?

Ricky: Yes, 'sactly! We're saving $3295.95, because all this stuff is goin' back!

  • Lucy: You go on over and tell [Betty] you're a tightwad.

Ricky: I'm a tightwad?

Lucy; (points to Ricky's shoe that was caught in door) Well, if the shoe fits...

  • Betty: What did [Ricky] have to say when he saw all the new things?

Lucy: Couldn't you hear him over at your house?

  • Lucy: Now that I see all this furniture here, I don't think it suits the house.

Betty: Dosen't suit it? It's an early American house, this is early American furniture.

Lucy: That's just it- it's too pat!

Betty: What?

Lucy: You know what this house needs?

Betty: What?

Lucy: Chinese modern!

  • Betty: My husband warned me not to get too chummy with the new neighbors, and he was so right!
  • Ricky: (to Lucy) And don't cry on that sofa- that's goin' back!
  • Ricky: Well, [the new furniture]'s a little bit high...

Ralph: High-priced?

Ricky: No, no, no. It's not that. High-class, you know? We're very earthy people.

Ralph: You mean you don't like it?

Ricky: Oh, no, it's not that. It's fine. It's just, well, it's not for us.

Ralph: What you mean is it doesn't suit you.

Ricky: Yes, that's it.

Ralph: In other words, you don't like my wife's taste!

  • Ralph: And you can forget about that TV show! We'll get Cugat!

Ricky: That does it! Come on [and fight]!

  • Ethel: Isn't all this new furniture beautiful?

Fred: Beautiful, it is. $3000-worth, it a'int!

  • Fred: (sees Ricky after fight with Ralph) If he looks like that, what must Lucy look like?!
  • Ethel: I got it. Didn't you?

Fred: No, I was doin' better with his Spanish!

  • Fred: I thought people moved to the country for peace and quiet!
  • Ethel: (amidst fighting) Aren't you gonna introduce us?

Lucy: These are our friends, the Mertzes. Our enemies, the Ramseys.

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