|THE NEIGHBORHOOD ARCHIVE - All Things Mister Rogers|
Mister Rogers arrives with a balloon which he says will be used at the end of the story. After a quick review of the previous day, Mister Rogers begins the story of Josephine again.
In the story, Rosie and Posie are becoming better acquainted with Josephine. She longs for a longer neck and Sam Snake reminds them that he longs to be able to H-I-S-S. Josephine says that there's nothing hard about hissing. Sam, hurt at being teased, says, “…Can't you see I get hysterical…!" Posie immediately notices that Sam has hissed by saying hys-terical. Overjoyed, Sam sings My Hissing Was Missing. Mr. Bulldog is notified of the good news and gives permission for a celebration to be planned. Stepping aside with Josephine, he learns that she wants to go home. He suggests the she do “five smiles in one standing, while looking up into the sky," but she says she hasn't even got one smile and will wait for Hazel outside. Hazel and J.R. arrive in the A.A.A. room for the party and Hazel receives a blue balloon, which she gives to J.R.. Mr. Bulldog worriedly tells them about the situation, and Hazel immediately goes to find Josephine.
Outside, a very depressed Josephine tells Hazel that It's No Use. Hazel convinces her to Promise to try for a few more minutes and they sing a duet of the two songs together. Back inside, Hazel convinces J.R. to talk to Josephine. He's a giraffe with a long neck and might be their “only hope."
Back outside, Josephine tells Butterfly, Bird and Bee that the others are fine, but she is ready to go home. J.R. comes out and sees her sitting on a rock. Singing Josephine, he stumbles over several of his speaking exercises, leading Josephine to think he is required to talk to her, just like she's supposed to smile (which she ‘demonstrates'). She says that he can grow out of his shyness but that she'll always look the way she does. He says he's glad and she tells him to go away. J.R. refuses and she says that he might as well, because she'll "always look..." J.R. interrupts her with “nice," and proceeds to sing I Think You're Nice. At the end of the song, a change comes over Josephine. J.R. also begins to talk – a lot. J.R. promises to give Josephine his balloon and invites her to call him Jack. Before they go in, she gives him a real smile.
Inside, Josephine tells a speechless Hazel and Mr. Bulldog that she will stay at school. Together, they sing I'm Glad I'm the Way I Am. As the celebration begins, Hazel's parents and Josephine's mother join them. Butterfly, Bird, and Bee fly in with a message from Sunflower, Frog, and Tree: “We love you too." Together they sing a “we" version of I'm Glad I'm the Way I Am.
Back at the house, Mister Rogers explains how many ways there are to grow. People can't control their outside growing, but they can do a lot about their insides and can choose to be glad they're the way they are. Closing, he re-emphasizes that we're more than just one thing and sings the end of You're Much More.
Josephine the Short-Neck Giraffe
A production of Family Communications
We dedicate the production of JOSEPHINE THE SHORT-NECK GIRAFFE to our good friend and opera maker, John Reardon, whose excellence as a singer and as a person will continue to inspire us all forever.
Appearing In This Episode
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