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Between Time and Timbuktu

Between Time and Timbuktu is the script of the television adaptation of Kurt Vonnegut's science fiction novels and stories.

It starts off with a contest announcer, saying that poet Stony Stevenson has won a contest, and as a result, he will travel into outer space on the Prometheus-5. He will be sent through a time warp, called a Chrono-Synclasic Infundibulum.

Bud Williams, Jr. and Walter Gesundheit, who were astronauts on previous Prometeuses, help guide Stony's connection with Earth. Six months after blast off, Stony reaches the time warp, and his connection with Earth gets lost.

A second Stony appears and the two talk before Stony gets sent to the island of San Lorenzo. Stony meets Bokonon and speaks with him for a while, but then the government attempts to kill Bokonon, just like in Vonnegut's novel Cat's Cradle.

Stony then gets sent to the trail of Dr. Paul Proteus, a character in Vonnegut's Player Piano. Stony is confused over the strange future, and then gets sent back to Earth. He meets a drunk man, who gives him money. Stony calls Williams and Gesundheit, who tell him to get off of the planet.

Stony gets sent to the place where Dr. Hoenikker worked at in Cat's Cradle. Doctor Hoenikker speaks with Stony about ice-nine, and Stony realizes how dangerous it is. Dr. Hoenikker also knows how dangerous it is, and assures Stony that it will never be used. The only safe use for it, Dr. Hoenikker feels, is for cryogenically freezing humans (particularly geniuses) with it.

Stony then gets sent to the world in Harrison Bergeron, a short story in Welcome to the Monkey House, which is a place where Diana Moon Glampers, the handicapper general, makes sure everyone is equal. Some people meet Stony and give him handicaps so he isn't better than anyone else (he is forced to wear weights, a fake nose, and a radio that plays loud noises so he can't concentrate and use his superior intellect to fool others).

Stony recedes into the shadows and removes his handicaps, and watches ballerinas dance. Harrison Bergeron, an escaped convict who refuses to wear his handicaps, comes in and convinces one of the ballerinas to do the same and be free. As they dance together, Diana Moon Glampers shoots the two of them dead.

Stony then gets sent to the short story "Welcome to the Monkey House", in Welcome to the Monkey House, where the world is incredibly overpopulated, and there are ethical suicide parlors everywhere. Everyone is also forced to take pills that prevent them from feeling anything below the waste. Stony speaks with Lionel J. Howard, a man who is about to use the suicide parlor. The last thing he says is a question, "What are people for?"

We then hear a story written by Bokonon which answers this question. Stony is then sent to heaven.

In heaven, everyone is happy, but then Adolf Hitler shows up, proclaiming that he is death. Hitler makes everyone disappear except himself and Stony. Stony figures out how to beat Hitler by using his imagination, and he escapes from death.

Stony's travels end then, and is sent back to earth. He gets out of a casket, and sees a tombstone for him. He asks a person working a cemetery about it. The man says that Stony's spaceship came back to earth with nothing in it. Stony thinks of Bokonon's words and walks off smiling.