A rare show topic involving the war effort. Sade rushes around the house, trying to prep her men on the visitor that is to pop in later. Her mission isn’t directly mentioned, but from the conversation we gather the woman is canvassing the neighborhood to drum up sales of war bonds. Is Vic and Russel as concerned? In their own way they are, but Sade is worried they won’t treat their visitor with due respect. She’s one of those acquaintences who Sade barely knows, but Sade bends over backwards to meet perceived obligations to her.
After a mix up, George has responded to a telegram calling him Kansas City’s favorite singer. We join him and Gracie on the train. How will George be helping to promote sales of war bonds, and beef production? Gracie relives a moment from their honeymoon in Kansas City, but the moment is cut short when Tootsie and Bill make an appearance.
Learning that Dinah Shore is onboard the train, George wants to tell her all about his status as Kansas City’s favorite singer. Will it burst his bubble to know it was really her who held the most favored status? She sings, I’ll Get By.
Before George can sing for Dinah, the train pulls in, and they settle into the same hotel they had their honeymoon… Or they try to. Bill brags about his dating prowess, and the sponsor product. While George and Dinah go to the theater, Gracie goes to thank the Chamber of Congress for inviting them. She learns the truth about the mix up, but how will she break the news to Sugar Throat Burns? Dinah sings, I Had a Man.
Will she help Gracie break the news to George? Gracie thinks if it were a matter of life and death, he might take it better. The theater manager refuses to help , Tootsie hasn’t had luck with her man hunt… until Gracie plays match maker. Will it become a dire situation for the manager?
On stage, Dinah sings the final bars of, Any Bonds Today? Bill gives the report on how the bond sales went. Encouragements to buy more bonds, and the grand finale… George joins Dinah for a special arrangement of, I Can’t Give You Anything but Love Baby.
George is feeling down after his recent failures in politics and music. Gracie tries her best to comfort him before the postman visits. How does the mail carrier maintain his exuberant, cheerful demeanor? Elsewhere, the Kansas City Chamber of Congress is meeting. Though they intend to send a telegram to their favorite singer, Dinah Shore, an address mix up finds it delivered to George.
Jimmy Cash sings, Amour. Still finding it hard to believe that he’s Kansas City’s favorite singer, George is on cloud 9 as he sings. Of course Bill Goodwin wants to go along… and pitches the sponsor product. Tootsie Sagwell arrives to hear the good news. Will George let her go too, and look for a man? According to Gracie, it’s where she and George spent their honeymoon.
Felix Mills and the Swantettes perform, The Doodle Bug Song. Looking in at the real favorite singer of Kansas City, Dinah Shore, gets a phone call to invite her to sing. With George’s head so far in the clouds, he doesn’t recognize what’s going on around him at the ticket booth at the train station. With travel restrictions in affect, George has trouble with his reservations.
Back home, Gracie tries to smuggle Tootsie into her luggage. Not to be held down, George sets out for Kansas City on his own.
In epilog, Bill shares a parting word, in light of D-Day, to keep giving kitchen fat to the war effort. Gracie and George make an appeal to keep buying war bonds, especially in light of the invasion news.
A man from the Treasury Department is to visit today, and with the telegram that outlines the expectations, the gents are worried. Will it involve back taxes, standing before a federal court, or something equally bad? Lum gets the idea to phone Dick Huddleston to see if he has the original telegram in his store.
Grandpap is manning the store for Dick, and reports that Dick and the official are at the flag pole. Lum and Abner are to stay put until they’re sent for. Does the gathering crowd that Abner can see mean a public hanging is in their future?
Cedric enters with a cheerful, “Wonderful world!” He doesn’t know what it’s about, only that he is to bring the gents to the flag pole. Abner frets, Lum is humiliated, and they drag their feet as they walk their longest mile. Has all their smiling friends turned them over to the penintentary? The honor from the Treasury Department comes as an especially pleasant surprise to the condemned men, and they are pleased at the award for their war bond work.
Nature lover, Mable Melrose has left town, and to everyone’s relief, including Lum. In the Jot Em Down store, the gents review local families to see if they can raise more money for war bonds. Still, Lum thinks he may have to join the foreign legion to totally forget Mable.
Putting his one track mind to work, Lum talks about each family in turn. The Abernathy’s, the Adam’s, the Barton’s, and various love interests and gossip of the soldiers and sailors sent off to war. The distraction of the gossip is interrupted when grandpap enters. He has another telegram to deliver. A citation is to be awarded, as noted in a previous telegram that he… um… somehow didn’t deliver.
Is the citation for a mistake on an income tax form? Where is that other telegram? Grandpap needs to phone home to see if he left that telegram there. Nobody would be so careless as to write recipes on the back of a telegram, or throw one away… would they?
The high class intellectual event makes Abner think the art exhibit is a flop. Nobody is whooping it up, or shouting. When it comes to the auction to raise the money for war bonds, Lum wants Cedric and Abner to spark sales by starting the bidding.
Besides being afraid of being stuck with buying Lum’s surrealist paintings, Abner is still disgusted with Lum’s artist clothes. The shabby, unkempt style makes Lum look like a tramp. Stepping out of the feed room, Lum announces the auction to the gathered crowd. Let the bidding begin!
Sure enough, Cedric and Abner open the bids at for pennies on the dollar. Going once… going twice… and sold for nickels, dimes, and quarter war stamps. Abner doesn’t mind giving to support the war bond drive, but he is getting riled at being the only one to buy those idiotic paintings. How is Mable Melrose taking the sales flop? When a painting actually sells for dollars, instead of cents, it looks like neither Lum or Mable will end up with the top sales tonight.
Abner has his doubts whether the folks of Pine Ridge will actually get uplifted by the surrealist art exhibition. Lum is sure it’ll be a hit, and scoffs at the old time notion of still life such as fruit in a bowl.
Plans are made to sell war bonds at the exhibit in the schoolhouse. Lum reminds Abner to pass the word for the young scholars to tidy up the place, and not leave their crayon drawings out. Abner tries to bring the topic to Lum proposing to Mabel Melrose, but he manages to evade the matter for now.
Lum tries to tell Abner about the new style in clothes that artists wear. It’s important to look the part. Abner just doesn’t understand the concept of the sleeveless artists smock, or mismatched color scheme. Embracing the starving artist look, Lum shows off the rumpled clothes.
The art exhibit is to showcase the paintings of Lum, and Mable Melrose. Abner’s complaint over Mable staying in his attic are endless, but they reach a new level when he and Lizabeth are ready to move out from under her. Paintings fill the house, and Mable has over run the place, causing Abner to sleep in the attic.
Wonderful world! Cedric has entered the Jot Em Down store to say how mad he is. He needs to use the phone. Will he lose his temper, and fly off the handle with Gomer Bates? He tells how the payroll savings plan made him mad. Since Abner is part of the committee that suggested it, he explains how the program works, and why its important to support the war effort.
The plan is meant to invest money that is saved as the result in cutting back on other areas of rationing, and buy bonds. Cedric would rather enjoy the sound of pocket change in his pocket as he walks down the street. Will Abner talk sense to him, and have Cedric do his patriotic duty? Meanwhile, Lum has finished his latest masterpiece, a picture of a war bond.
As Abner enters the Jot Em Down store and library, Lum is in a good mood. Wonderful World! The attitude isn’t contagious to the grumpy Abner, and his complaints over Mabel Melrose, who is living in his attic. Will the starving artist make good someday, and thrust even Abner into notoriety?
In preparing for the art exhibit to raise money for the next war bond drive, Lum reminds Abner it will be yet another thing to raise the level of ignorance in Pine Ridge. The surrealist style of art has Abner disgusted, and thinks it’s all nonsense.
To augment the artwork, Lum wants to give lectures on the exhibits. He gives Abner a sample of a speech on the high mental inspirations of the surrealist style of art. It’s all too deep for Abner to grasp. Do the dreamscapes Mabel paints mean she does it in her sleep? Lum tries his best to explain, but in the end he decides to become a surrealist artist himself.
Now living in Abner’s attic, Mable Melrose is living the life of a starving artist. In the Jot Em Down store, Abner hangs a new door, and explains to Cedric that it’s for keeping the flies out. Reckon… why would he want to keep them out? How do they know enough to come in? These, and more questions plague Abner.
Questions turn to Mable, and how things are going. Sleeping in late, eating meals in bed, and more habits that annoy Abner to no end. Her demands for quiet, so she can be inspired, include keeping the livestock quiet. Abner hopes that though she won the contest to marry Lum, he hopes she doesn’t go through with it. She’s not good enough for Lum in his opinion.
As Cedric wonders how to let the flies out the open door, and not let the others in, Lum returns. Will he notice the door? He calls for a staff meeting of war bond chairmen to plan the next drive. How about a big art exhibit? Buy a bond to get in, and auction off paintings for bonds. But where will they get the famous artwork? Lum thinks Mable will do.