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Salvage with a Smile (1940)


Warning: screenonline full synopses contain 'spoilers' which give away key plot points. Don't read on if you don't want to know the ending!

The Professor asks his housekeeper to invite Mr Herring, the dustman, into his home. He offers Mr Herring a beer. When a neighbour, Miss Green, arrives with a box of bones she is introduced to Mr Herring and the Professor ekxplains that she is preparing a lecture on salvage and they would like advice on how best to leave items out for the dustmen.

The Professor explains why each item of salvage is useful: bones are used to make glue, glycerine and fertiliser, waste paper is essential for recycling into packaging, and scrap metal can provide the raw material for tanks, ships, guns, planes and ammunition. He then asks Mr Herring how each of these salvage items should be left out. The dustman explains that paper and cardboard should be bundled up with string, bones wrapped in paper or put in a box or tin, while metal (aluminium, copper and brass) can simply be left by the bin.

The Professor's housekeeper puts out the household salvage, neatly parcelled and labelled in line with Mr Herring's instructions.