"Lucy, that was a great dinner," Ethel said.
"Yeah, great. Thanks, Lucy! You cook better than Ethel," Fred said.
"What's that supposed to mean?" Ethel asked Fred.
"Oh now, it doesn't mean anything. Just that ... sometimes ... Lucy's food tastes better than yours. But it's not you. I mean, if we had the same things that Lucy makes, then I'm sure it'd taste just as good with you cookin'. But you don't fix it."
"Well," Ethel said. "You wormed out of it this time."
Lucy chuckled, "What'd you think, Ricky?"
"I think it was a little spicy," Ricky told her.
"Spicy!? It was just a chicken dinner," Lucy protested.
"I know, Honey. But you know I don't really care for stuff that's too spicy," Ricky said.
"But Ricky, you never told me that before," Lucy said.
"Yeah, Rick. You never mentioned anything like that," Fred defended Lucy.
"Oh Fred," Ethel said. "This is their argument. You stay out of it." Then Ethel turned to Ricky, "But they're both right, anyway. You never said anything."
"Now who's butting in?" Fred asked sarcastically.
"Oh, you two," Lucy said. "If Ricky doesn't like spices, he doesn't like spices." Then Lucy thought of something, "Ricky, if you thought it was too spicy, why'd you eat it? Nobody made you."
"Well," Ricky started. "If you must know, I just didn't like it that much."
"Why not, Ricky?" Ethel asked. "It was wonderful."
"Yeah, Rick..." Fred said.
"Would you two stay out of this!?" Lucy exclaimed. Then she turned to Ricky, "Why not?"
"Lucy, we've had chicken everyday this week," Ricky said. "Chicken and Rice ... Plain Chicken ... Chicken with Dip on the side ... everything 'chicken' you can think of."
"Yeah," Fred said. "If Ethel did that, I'd probably get tired of it, too."
"I thought you wanted to stay out of it, Freddie Boy," Ethel said.
"I'm not getting involved, I'm just stating a fact," Fred said sarcastically.
"Well, I'm just stating a fact when I say, 'Lucy, that was sweet of you to cook Ricky what you thought was his favorite'. There Fred,and you can't say anything. 'Cause I was just 'stating a fact'," Ethel said angrily.
"Ethel, it's a little different when --" Fred stopped as he noticed Lucy and Ricky staring at him. Ethel noticed it, too.
"Can't we have our own disagreement without it affecting you two?" Lucy asked.
"Lucy, you leave them be. We've gotta' talk. I'm sick of chicken. I don't want it anymore," Ricky said.
"Well, I'm sorry Ricky," Lucy said heatedly. "But if you don't want something, don't tell me you--" Lucy stopped, with a thoughtful look on her face.
Then she started laughing.
Until Ricky asked, "Do you think you'd mind sharing with us what's so funny?"
"I'm sorry, Ricky. But listen to us. You and me were fighting because you said you didn't want chicken. Now the Mertzes' are fighting over the fact that they're butting into our fight. And now we're fighting not only about the chicken, but we're also fighting with them about butting in. I just think it's silly."
Ethel started laughing, too, "Ya' know, she's right."
Ricky and Fred realized that she was right. But they didn't bother with the laughing.
"I'm sorry, Fred," Ricky said.
"I'm sorry, too, Rick," Fred said.
When Ethel and Lucy had stopped laughing, Ethel said, "I'm sorry Lucy. We should've minded our own business, and left."
"Oh, Ethel. Come on. You and me both know that every married couple has their fights. I'd think you'd know that. Especially by now," Lucy said, standing up to clear the table.
"What do you mean by that?" Ethel asked.
"Well, it's just that you've been married so long. Especially being married to Fred. He's such a cheapskate, he can't be the easiest to get along with," Lucy explained.
Ethel got offended. She jumped out of her seat so she could confront Lucy, "He may be a cheapskate, but he's my cheapskate. Besides, we have experience. More than you. Since we've been married longer, we know each other better that you and Ricky do. And we could even get along if we wanted to. Longer than you and Ricky could."
"Oh yeah?" Lucy asked.
"Yeah," Fred exclaimed, standing up beside Ethel.
"Oh no!" Ricky exclaimed, jumping up, and standing next to Lucy. "Just because me and Lucy haven't been married as long as you, doesn't mean we can't get along. It just means we're still young and in love, and we could get along more than you."
"Now, I don't think so. It just doesn't work that way. Me and Ethel are the more ... compatible ... couple," Fred said.
"Yeah? If you're so sure of yourself, how 'bout puttin' your money where your mouth is?" Ricky asked.
"You mean a bet?" Ethel asked.
"Yeah," Lucy said. "Why not? We can bet this: Whichever couple can keep from fighting the longest, wins. If you and Fred fight first, you lose. If me and Ricky fight first, we win."
"Hey!" Ethel protested.
"Oh," Lucy said. "If me and Ricky fight first, you lose."
"Okay," Ethel said. "Wait ... LUCY!!"
"Wait," Lucy said. "If me and Ricky fight first, you win."
"Yeah," said Ricky. "That sounds fair. Except we all have to be honest with each other. We don't all live together, so we'll have to be completely honest! Promise?"
"Yes," Ethel said.
"Okay," said Fred.
"I agree," Lucy said.
"Yeah, me too," said Ricky. "Okay, so ... how much do you wanna' bet?"
"How about $10.00?" Fred suggested.
"Not very confident on winning, are ya' Fred?" Lucy asked. "How about $20?"
"Now who's not very confident?" Ethel asked. "I say $35?"
"I'm so confident, I'll go $50," Ricky said.
"$50!?" Fred exclaimed. "What do you think I am? Made 'o money?"
"Well," Lucy started. "If you don't think you and Ethel could win, then don't ..."
"Hey, $50 works for me. By the end, me and Ethel will be that much richer." Fred said.
"Okay," said Ricky. "It's a deal. We'll bet $50, and whichever couple fights first, loses the bet."
"Okay for us," Ethel said.
"Good!" Lucy exclaimed.