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(Source): NY Daily News

Rick isn't up to throwing the annual July 4th Bauer barbecue Friday on "Guiding Light" because his wife, Beth, dumps him for the wealthier Alan Spaulding.

"Beth decides to go with the guy with the sheckels," says Michael O'Leary, who plays hard-luck Dr. Rick Bauer.

"You're looking at a guy who's lost his medical license five times, had a heart transplant and has been basically living in a hotel that makes the Motel 6 look like the Four Seasons," says O'Leary. "I don't know why she would make that choice."

Josh and Cassie host the barbecue instead, and Beth persuades Rick to go with her anyway.

"Isn't that sweet?" says O'Leary. "At least it's not emasculating. 'Rick, you're a lousy lover, and you can't support the lifestyle that I've become accustomed to. Let's go have a Ball Park Frank and forget about the whole thing.'"

As always, the whole town shows up. This year, "GL" filmed the scenes on location in Peapack, N.J. "There's Rick flipping the burgers, fresh from being dumped," says O'Leary.

"It's going to look beautiful." he says. "Visually, it will be very pleasing because we're actually cooking burgers. We're really throwing the football. They have this huge jungle gym, so we're all jumping around on that. Everybody else had a good time, but obviously there's only so much fun Rick can have after just being dumped."

Rick and Beth actually have a sweet scene together.

"We're on this park bench. She just kind of leans her head up against my shoulder and says, 'I hope I didn't lose my best friend.'" Did she? "When you're involved in a platonic relationship for 25 years to somebody who's your best friend, then it becomes something else [a marriage], and then it ends, I don't know if you can ever go back again.

"So, all Rick has to look forward to now is weekends with his illegitimate child with the missing Harley?

"Obviously since Harley's the best mother in Springfield," says O'Leary, "I'll be taking over with Jude."

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