Airport 1970,

Minute 021: You Figure it Out

August 29, 2016

Guest Host: Chuck Goldstone

Chuck Goldstone is an author, humorist and is assumed to have written THIS BOOK IS NOT A TOY: FRIENDLY ADVICE ON HOW TO AVOID DEATH AND OTHER INCONVENIENCES, which the prestigious St. Martin’s Press claims sold at least a few boxes of books. As a commentator and radio pundit, he was heard nationally on Marketplace for a decade and has appeared regularly as a guest on CBS Radio Boston. His humor-stuffed websites include and In the real world, he has helped organizations from global giants to scraping startups tell their stories more persuasively. He recalls seeing Airport the first time on an airplane. But maybe it was On Golden Pond.


Mel Bakersfeld is talking to his wife, Cindy, on the phone while flashbacks of previous arguments appear on the screen. Right now, there’s a flashback of Mel, talking to Cindy’s dad in what appears to be a stuffy, wood-paneled men’s club. Several old men are seated in wing-backed leather chairs while an extremely old and stooped butler serves drinks from a silver tray.  Mel continues speaking from the previous minute.

“[I’m not interested] in your father’s job,” says Mel. “I’ve been in aviation for twenty years — that’s what I’m trained for, that’s what I like, and that’s my life.”

“Yes,” replies Cindy, “and what kind of a life?” The flashback changes to the Bakersfeld’s bedroom. Cindy sits at her vanity, arguing with Mel, who is smoking while reading in PJs on his twin bed. “This would give you regular hours,” says Cindy. “We’d have a chance to be together and with our children — and your income would be three times what it is now.”

Mel says sarcastically, “Sure, sure – – and we can join the country club and get a bigger house.”

Cindy asks, “And what’s wrong with that?”

“Now let’s get something straight,” says Mel. “I’ll support my family my way, on the income from my job.” The flashback scene changes to a time when the Bakersfeld family is seated at dinner, only to have an upset daughter Robbie pushing away from the table and  running out of the room.

“And you don’t give a damn about our future!” replies Cindy.

“At the moment,” says Mel, “I’m just trying to survive the present.” The scene returns to a present-day split screen of Cindy and Mel.

“Well,” says Cindy, “maybe you won’t have to.”

“What the hell does that mean?” asks Mel.

“You figure it out!” says Cindy, and hangs up the phone. The split screen disappears, leaving Mel looking at the receiver of his phone.  Dial tone fills the air. He hangs up Tanya’s desk phone.

Meanwhile, Tanya brings a tray of coffee and sandwiches into the Trans Global Lounge. She walks over to the door to her office, listens for any sign of Mel’s phone conversation, then screws on a smile and opens the door.

“This room’s empty,” says Tanya with a determined happiness in her voice. “Why don’t you lie down for a minute?” Mel says nothing.

“Hey, guess what?” says Tanya.

In This Minute

Burt Lancaster as Mel Bakersfeld
Dana Wynter as Cindy Bakersfeld
Lisa Gerritsen as Libby Bakersfeld
Ilana Dowding as Robbie Bakersfeld
Jean Seberg as Tanya Livingston



Scroll to top