(Raises his hand to knock, stops)
But, come to think of it, ol' buddy Herbert Birdsfoot usually takes a bath this time of day.
He may not like being bothered, you know, sitting in his warm tubby, having to go answer the door.
I know I wouldn't; I mean, there he is, sitting all nice and warm in his tubby, then have to get out, just because someone is pounding on the door. There he'd be standing, all wet and sudsy, just because I came over to borrow his vacuum cleaner.
He might be so mad, he wouldn't lend me his vacuum cleaner. He might think I wouldn't give it back. I would, but he might not think so.
(pause, Ernie is starting to get annoyed)
He might -- he might go around telling my friends not to lend me anything anymore. And then -- and then people wouldn't lend me anything anymore. They might not play with me, they might not even talk to me anymore.
(by now Ernie is really upset)
Why I -- I used to have a lot of friends around here -- before that rotten ol' Herbert Birdsfoot started shooting off his mouth!"
(pounds furiously on the door. HB answers it, fully dressed)
Herbert Birdsfoot: (pleasantly) "Why hello, Ernie. How can I help you?"
Ernie: (furious) "Oh yeah?! Well if that's the way you feel about it, you can just keep your rotten ol' vacuum cleaner, you--!!!"
(marches off, leaving Herbert very surprised)