Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Prisoners be silent, Be sharp

It's been a very long week and it's only Wednesday. So, I'm whipping one out from the cellar to share. Below is a scene written based on the song "This Lamb Sells Condos" by Final Fantasy. It's unfinished, but now that I've read it again, I think I might continue to work on it.


(In the darkness, we hear the opening strains of the This Lamb Sells Condos by Final Fantasy. As the verse starts a pinspot comes up on MEAGAN, an average looking woman in her late twenties, early thirties. Her face is the only thing that is illuminated as she mouths along with the words.

At the end of the verse the lights spread out and reveal an office of someone in the higher ups. She is sitting on the receiving side of the desk and has been restrained with rubber bands or tape. The music cuts out abruptly, and she continues to sing:

MEAGAN
“Prisoners, be silent, be silent and be sharp.”

(She stops singing any words and hums for a moment, then stops looking around the room.

JULIE appears behind her and looks in the door. She is a woman in her mid-forties and is apparently the “higher up” who occupies the office. She peers in at MEAGAN and looks off, perhaps as if she’s talking to somebody else. A beat.

JULIE enters with a flustered look on her face and she tries to hide this through out the scene. She is carrying a folder.)

JULIE
Meagan, hello.

(MEAGAN makes a little wave at JULIE, her hand only able to go so high due to the restraint. A beat. JULIE sits.)

MEAGAN
You live in my condo.

JULIE
Wh-what?

MEAGAN
I don’t own there, I just rent, but you live in the building there.

JULIE
On Marine?

MEAGAN
Yes.

JULIE
I’ve never seen you.

MEAGAN
Yes. But I live there nonetheless.

(JULIE opens her folder and looks at it. MEAGAN quietly sings.)

MEAGAN
“Prisoners, be silent, be silent and be sharp.” What’s that?

JULIE
Hm?

MEAGAN
Is that my personnel file?

JULIE
As a matter of fact, it is.

MEAGAN
I see. Okay.

(Another beat. JULIE studies MEAGAN.)

JULIE
Well, you’re not what I expected!

(Pause. MEAGAN gives JULIE a blank stare.)

MEAGAN
What?

JULIE
Didn’t you hear me, I said “You’re not what I expected.”

MEAGAN
Oh.

(A beat. JULIE reviews the paperwork in front of her. MEAGAN mouths the words to the song, hearing it in her head, but with no sound.)

MEAGAN
What a strange thing to say.

JULIE
What’s that?

MEAGAN
What a strange thing to say. That I’m not what you expected.

JULIE
It was just something to say-

MEAGAN
But why did you say it?

JULIE
Say what?

MEAGAN
What? That I’m not what…you just said it. Is it a good thing or a bad thing?

JULIE
I am completely confused…you aren’t what I thought you were going to be.

MEAGAN
Okay, fine.

(Pause)

JULIE
I thought – in my mind I saw you like you were fat or something.

MEAGAN
Fat?

JULIE
Yes, or ugly or scraggly…you know how crazy-people are. Or people who have a beef? They look terrible and hairy or…whatever. That’s probably why they’re pissed off to begin with anyway. You don’t look like that – like you have a beef. (A beat)

MEAGAN
Fat.

JULIE
Satisfied?

(A beat. MEAGAN sings)

MEAGAN
“Prisoners, be silent, be silent and be sharp.”

JULIE
I’d really rather you not sing right now.
MEAGAN
Does it distract you that I’m humming?

JULIE
A little. I don’t much like it when people sing and I don’t know the song. It just winds up sounding like a bunch of tuneless gobbledygook.

MEAGAN
But it’s not.

JULIE
Right…but I don’t know the song, so it sounds that way to me.

MEAGAN
I can sing something else if you like.

(They look at each other.)

JULIE
Quiet…would be what I’d like.

(MEAGAN looks away. JULIE pulls out a pen and pad.)

JULIE
Now, before the police get here, I’d like to do something in the way of an exit interview.

MEAGAN
Oh…all right.

JULIE
I’m looking over your file and I’m noticing that there has been no incident since you started working here five years ago. Is that right?

MEAGAN
If that’s what it says…no incident except today.

JULIE
Yes…that’s right. That was implied in my statement.

MEAGAN
No it wasn’t, but okay.

JULIE
Excuse me?

MEAGAN
There was no implication in your statement to me that you were referencing the past five years INCLUDING today.

(A beat)

JULIE
Are you one of those irony people?

MEAGAN
Irony?

JULIE
Right, where everything’s a joke and you go around making the rest of us feel stupid?

MEAGAN
Irony people?

JULIE
See? There you go…how am I supposed to feel now?

MEAGAN
I was just saying that…

JULIE
Let it go…let it go, let it go let it go.

MEAGAN
Yes’m.

(JULIE reads over her file again and looks at MEAGAN and looks back at her file.)

JULIE
Okay, I just want to know: Why did you set fire to your cubicle?

MEAGAN
“Prisoners, be silent, be silent and be sharp.”

JULIE
I said to stop singing.

MEAGAN
“Prisoners, be silent, be silent and be sharp.”

JULIE
I said STOP.



Oh, me. That's the end. Huh. I better get crackin'.

Ah, yes. And here's the video for the song.

1 comment:

Henri D said...

Nice. Simple, yet very intriguing.
Would like to know where this goes.

 
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