Young Tobacconist: "Gee whiz, mister! Thanks! Suite 316!" (Then, to his friend after The SMOKER walks off...) "Billy, who is that guy? He orders a carton of cigarettes a day!"
Billy: "Holy Cow! You don't know him!? He's a big-shot private detective! He's....'THE SMOKER!' "
ANNOUNCER: "Yes, he's THE SMOKER, and a smoker knows what others can only guess at!"
The Smoker: "Yeah, I smoke a lot. It relaxes me, and things tend to happen when you smoke! Like the other day, for instance. I was sitting in my office, puffing away, when the phone rang...."
"It was a real cute girl, you could tell, and I knew she was classy because you could smell the expensive perfume right through the phone. She said she had a job for me, and that I should come down to her house in Beverly Hills."
"It was night when I got there. I didn't know what was going on, but I figured I'd give the outside of the place the once over before knocking on the door. I parked silently in the back and went through my routine. Wow! You coulda' fit my whole office in her kitchen! It looked OK, so I knocked."
"She answered as I was lighting up. Just another customer, I thought."
"Whoa! Let me revise that! NOT just another customer!!!! She was quite a woman, no doubt about it, about five-four, braided blonde hair, and with a body that said 'Wanna be my friend?' Yeah, I definitely wanted to be her friend!"
"She opened the door wide and gestured me in, but before I could take a step her face went pale. She seemed to be looking at something behind me."
"She backed up, trembling and saying "No...no! I won't tell anybody, I promise! Please...please...don't...."
"I wheeled around to confront whatever it was, but before I could focus I took a heavy slam to the head and the next thing I knew I was out cold!"
"When I came to, maybe 15 minutes later, I found myself holding a warm gun. How did that get there? Not only that, but I was inside the house and it was dark. I pulled myself up and groped along the furniture, looking for a light switch. It didn't take long before I stumbled over something on the floor, and it wasn't furniture. It was something soft with braided hair. It was the lady from the doorway, covered in blood!"
"I let out a gasp and staggered backward! We'll never know what would have happened next because the next minute was all about the wail of police sirens, and the light from cop cars coming through the curtains."
"Maybe I shoulda' stayed there and explained everything...maybe... but there I was holding a warm gun next to a corpse, and somehow explaining didn't seem like a very good idea. I pocketed the gun and headed for the back door. That was when I got the second surprise of the evening...my car was gone!'
"My first thought was to run, then I noticed a fancy car with an open door and keys in the ignition. I didn't get it! Why would somebody take my old wreck and leave a car like this in its place? Who knows? No time to think! I got in and peeled out, before the cops knew what was happening!"
"Did I say there were two surprises that evening? Change it to three! On the seat beside beside me.....just sitting there was.....no, I think I'll save that part of the story for next time. I'm getting hoarse and it's time to savor this wonderful menthol cigarette that I've been waving. Check in next week for another installment of ....THE SMOKER!"