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PRI's Environmental News Magazine

In Search of Oil

Air Date: Week of May 26, 2006

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With skyrocketing gas prices and U.S. determination to wean ourselves from foreign oil, companies are looking for new energy sources close to home. Rich Pliskin and his Players of Princeton, New Jersey imagine that it won’t be long before drilling comes to a neighborhood near you.


CURWOOD: With oil prices hovering near $70 a barrel, and oil profits at some of the highest levels in history, the race is on for new sources of oil and gas. Demand is so high that in Texas, oilrigs are drilling deep and wide, almost every where, including in a Houston neighborhood. The search of untapped sources of black gold has writer Rich Pliskin and his Players wondering how long it will be before energy wildcat drillers wind up in your front yard.


ROGER: Ahh. Thanks, hon.

CINDY: Light 'n sweet. Just the way you like it.

ROGER: Couldn't live without it.


CINDY: Is that a helicopter?

ROGER: Not in this neighborhood.


CINDY: Roger, there's a chopper in the front yard!

ROGER: What the --


FOREMAN: Roger Martin? Of 10 Clampett Court?

ROGER: Yes, that's right. Who are you? And what are all these trucks doing on my front lawn!

FOREMAN: [CALLING OUT TO WORK CREW]This is it, fellas! Let's start punchin' holes!


ROGER: What's the meaning of this? Who are you?



Pound that baby down, Fred! That's it!

ROGER: NARC? There's no drug dealing here!

FOREMAN: That's "NERC." National Energy Recovery Corp. Part of the governmental-petroleum complex.

ROGER: I don't understand.


FOREMAN: NERC satellite says your yard's got the richest vein of light sweet crude this side of the Board of Ed building.

CINDY: Oil? You're drilling for oil? In my peonies?

FOREMAN: Plenty of it, ma’am. Government's under pressure to top off those tanks, at least through November.

[CALLING OUT} Get that derrick in here, Freddy! That's it!

CINDY: My yard isn't an oil field. It's -- it's a yard! Roger?

ROGER: Now see here, NARC, or NERC or --

FOREMAN: Whoaaa..Comin' down!


CINDY: My hummer!

FOREMAN: You, uhh, might wanna move the vehicles off the work site, ma’am.

CINDY: It's not a work site! It's a mulch bed!


ROGER: [GROANS] aw, not Drysdale.

DRYSDALE: I hear you're sittin' on a goldmine!

ROGER: What?

DRYSDALE: They found coal under Furman's pool. Smithers has tungsten!

ROGER: Oh, my god. That's awful!

DRYSDALE: Awful? They're rich! Do you have any idea what they're paying for the drilling leases?

CINDY: Drilling leases?


ROGER: Honey?

CINDY: Zip it, Roger.


CINDY: What are these leases you're talking about?

DRYSDALE: Let's just say their brokers’ suddenly taking their calls. Say, what happened to the hummer?

CINDY: Hey! Hey, Mr. Energy man!

ROGER: But, sweetheart! The peonies!

CINDY: Get that wreck outta there, Freddy!

ROGER: Honey?

CINDY: Cut 'er up, drag 'er out and let's get the goop outta the ground. Move it, move it, move it! Let's go!


CURWOOD: A little satire, courtesy of Rich Pliskin and his Players of Princeton, New Jersey.



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