Improvised Writing


Thus saith the Bard:
A short time ago in a sea  far, far, away there was an island named Ithaca. It was not so very different than any other place. There were the normal goings about that occur in any city where the inhabitants secretly hate each other yet rally around the shared greater hatred for foreigners. People could say that it was a shining city on a hill if it weren’t for the coal ash besoaked walls and low lying anthrax clouds.
The whistle from the factory each day heralded another venture to the bar which softened the hard blow of returning home and the church bells signalled the rush to the colosseum to find out what the score was in the big Bears vs. Martyrs game. Life there was as simple as life can be which is to say it was as wretched and demeaning as ever, but supplied with enough wine and denial to keep procreation an acceptable life choice. 
Days went by without a care in Ithaca, at least within the privileged class. Afternoons found many a goat-fattened bottom planted in a dais, perched upon a veranda watching the wretched of the earth below. They drank their mint juleps and nibbled cucumber sandwiches while deciding which human emotion to seal off from their perview. Theirs was the life of luxury and they were envied by none.
In the shadow of their haciendas were the ever hunched and squatting masses, set about in their toilings and common violences which were the inspiration for religious saints and the subject of newspapers’ neglect. The poor of Ithaca were as the poor of anytime or place to theologians: But a dream appealed to feigning piety and a nightmare revealed by prophets to their shame. To the politician before the election they were the banner and after the election the toilet paper. To the middle class, they were their unadmitted equals, to the upper class their moral superiors.
Ithaca was a quiet place, a tranquil haven for respite and reflection during the breaks between army-conscription raids and parades honoring the glorious dead and unfortunate injured. All was well on the heavenly isle, the site of many epic poem and love ballad. 
Of Ithaca it was said,
“There is a mountain there, which a public works project aimed to craft into a volcano  
high Neriton, covered in forests. Its discharge rather than lava was to be the city’s effluvium
for its citizens nary minded being shat on so long as it was in grand style.
Many islands lie around it, very close to each other,
Doulichion, Same, and wooded Zacynthos–all a bunch of losers just sitting on unused oil–
but low-lying Ithaca is farthest out to sea,
towards the sunset, and the others are apart, towards the dawn and sun.
It is rough, but no one promised you a rose garden.”

Yes, there were many a song that left the lips of trollops concerning that wonderous land granted by Providence, espousing Liberty, and granting Hard Knocks.
To potential visitors, the chamber of commerce called gilding the lily what actual residents called polishing the turd. It was a stunning place to see and many who lived there couldn’t shake the stun from their faces.

There were many great monuments and gods and statues putting form to virtue but no greater figure existed than the living icon of the Great King, Majestic and Beardy.
He was a self-parodying simulacrum of ‘kingness’, a former Hollywood actor of chimp-hijinks cinema and baseball team owner. He was a modern cowboy and an anachronism in his own time. He stood as tall as a candy machine and dispensed Snickers when gut-punched.
He was King Ulysses S. Groan, man of little words and short sentences.
Born and raised within the 45 square miles of his home, he never intended to leave it.
And though he was a grand schemer, we all know about the best laid schemes of mice and men…
they’re gang aft a-gley.

Whisper into someone’s perfumed ear with heaving chest tomorrow’s weather report and find quickly the difference of classes of communication. What you say and its context matters. We affirm this by thoroughly despising the dinner party’s bore, the know-it-all, the gossip, the ‘did you see that squirrel?’ diarrhea mouth.
h0m-R’s choices of what type of story he should tell the gods fell broadly into the various genres of communication:

Fact: These are usually small units of information that are indisputable by the sensible and hard won by experiment. They are the favorite target of the insane, or the religious fanatic who will, by their very dispute call them ‘disputable’. (example: “The world is round.” “Well that’s debatable.” “No its not.” “Well I’m debating it right now, aren’t I?”) Facts are often mistaken for Truth or falsely believed to be like grains of sand comprising a sand castle called Reality. 
History: Is a narrative created from report, collective memory, evidences, and physical sciences. It is mostly wrong and closely associated with lies, myth, and marketing. From the mouths of the powerful it explains why they should be powerful and why they should be standing on your neck. In the hands of the weak it usually makes company with AK-47s. As the saying goes: Those who forget seventh grade history will be doomed to being passed along to be the 8th grade teacher’s problem.
Fiction: Real stuff that’s weird is said by some to be ‘stranger than fiction’. People who say this haven’t read much more than Marmaduke. Fiction is a broad category that involves most everything born of the fantasies of inadequate and chubby teens. Any piece of fiction can get passed as being “based on a true story” so long as that true story involves Kevin Bacon.
Report: This is what someone says about what they experienced or believe. A ‘report’ is commonly assumed to be ‘fact’ when being told by a cult leader (“God told me to sleep with you…and your daughters.” “Help me out of this robe!”) But is assumed to be questionable rantings when told by a doctor (“You have your hands and feet stuck in a blender.” “I want a second opinion”). 
Autobiography: A blend of report and lies, autobiography falls into only a few types: 1) “I triumphed over hardship.” 2) “I triumphed over hardship to achieve greatness and you should buy my self-help tapes.” 3) “I am currently in rehab and will triumph soon but in the meantime please see my current movie playing in theatres where I play a frazzled mom who meets Hugh Grant.”
Lies: These are fun to tell, but even more fun to hear because they are exactly what we want to hear. No one has ever lied to displease others. (“Why did you tell me you slept with my sister?” “I thought I’d make your birthday memorable!”) Lies make up 95% of our day to day communication and we like it that way and it is usually ‘facts’ that cause us the most dread–like death, taxes, or our slow metabolism. 
Marketing: This is lies taken to a professional level. Corporations, politicians, and lovers specialize in marketing. They know exactly the lies you want to hear and you love them even though you know they are defrauding you of something.
Myth: This is a history in maturity. It is a fiction whose characters reach an almost divine status. There are many myths: Capitalism, democracy, altruism, tasteful uses for velvet, and the female orgasm.
Theology: Like the rule book for Scrabble. Unreadable, unfun, and only appealed to when some asshole wants to use acronyms or worship God through loving and tender intercourse.
Collective Memory: Will become myth in time, collective memory is a smattering of ‘report’ and ‘history’ and is taken as taken for granted. Includes: a) “Things used to be so bad–you ought to be more grateful”, and b) “Things used to be so good–you ought to be more ashamed” More important than collective memory is collective forgetfulness, which is an area the United States has bragging rights in.
Ritual: Accompanying the language of ritual is liturgy, chant, song, jargon, and magic. Of course, ritual is enacted story and most stories here involve a conclusion of bad coffee and smooshed donuts in the Congregational Hall.
Magic: This is a lie that is understood to be a lie by all involved parties and expressly undertaken as such. We enjoy magic because it successfully enables us to believe the unbelieveable–which religion so far has failed to do.
News: This is the industry of gossip. Lies and marketing converge with report. It is the idle talk of subway cars posing as knowledge of the world. If people were to for one day listen to the hopes and pains of others in their lives rather than read ‘the news’, the world would be transformed for the better.
Journalism: Is what news is often mistaken to be, but actually takes too much research, investigation, and thought to be profitable to Corporations or trusted by politicians. It is fearful to ingest as it often calls for accountability and responsibility. Its most common use is to be played on cabin AM radios as background noise while jarring pickles.
Secrets: Everyone loves secrets which are lies with the implication of trust. They abound in sects and secret societies. Even those uninterested in robes and infant sacrifice can be drawn into the fold with the hopes of learning the secrets of inner circle. Telling a person a secret is an intimate way to corrupt them–like kissing someone when your cold sores are active.
Madness: Messages that the powerful can’t deal with. This is the category of true prophets, insurrectionists, radicals, and aunts with cats.
Poetry: This is the most ‘true’ type of human communication. It is indefinable but there is no ‘bad’ poetry. There is only regretted poetry. Poetry is not what its creator calls it. It is outside the creator’s control and pours from some infinite and uncorrupted space between heartbeats. Seeing as humans are finite and corrupted, its origin and process are still indecipherable.

These options were discarded by h0m-R in favor for one last type of ‘story’: Improvisational. This he chose as it was the easy way out for scoundrels and no-talent hacks as failure in the realm of improvisation is not only expected, it is inevitable.

Police Officer Patty: Okay now Mr. Sherman-I know that you’ve gone through a lot but this will all be over soon.
Mr. Sherman: I can’t take anymore of this! This coffee that is. This is the worst police station coffee I’ve ever had!
POP: I’m sorry. Its just that with budget cuts and everything-
MS: I didn’t ask you for any excuses, Patty…Now, I’ve been waiting patiently for like an hour now-
POP: And I appreciate your patience. First we’ll get these handcuffs off you-
MS: Thank you! They’re on really tight. I can hardly even comb my fingers through my hair!
POP: We’ll get them off you as soon as we get the key. Officer Lou ate the key and he’s drinking Milk of Magnesia as we speak.
Police Officer Lou: (enters) hey guys-here’s that key. Sorry about that.
MS: About time, Lou!
POP: Lou, can you also get me the murder victim’s skull from the evidence locker?
POL: Uhhh…That might take a while to get the key to the evidence locker.
POP: (Looks gently accusing and shakes her head)
POL: I have an eating disorder, Patty. You KNOW that. (exits in a huff)
MS: Don’t make excuses for yourself, Lou! (Patty takes off MS’s cuffs) Ahhh. Now that’s better.
POP: And you’ll have to promise not to choke me again.
MS: No one can tell the future, Patty.
POP: I’m not asking you for a horoscope, Mr. Sherman- just that you won’t choke me again.
MS: Are you familiar with existentialism, Patty?
POP: Of course. My last murder case was committed with an extension cord. (MS looks unsure) And the murder victim was an octopus with an extra tentacle. (MS looks more unsure)…and it got me thinking about the meaning of my life. (MS finally looks appeased)
MS: Well, my point is, Patty-we can never be certain of what will be. Or WHO we’ll be at any given time. There is no essential ‘self’, Patty.
POP: You…your wisdom is powerful. You’re like a philosopher king.
MS: (chokes Patty for three seconds and then sits, looking innocent)
POP: You just choked me!
MS: That was the Mr. Sherman of the past, Patty. I live in the now.
POP: You facinate me (looks romantically at MS).
Police Offficer Lou: (enters) Hey guys! (senses romantic aire) Sorry to interrupt. I got that skull for you. (holds up tiny
container)
POP: Thank you Lou…(looks at inquisitively) That’s much smaller than I had expected.
POL: Well it IS the skull of a squirrel.
POP: I know that! Of course I know that. Still-its remarkably small.
MS: That is small. Even for a squirrel.
POL: …and I cremated it…and I spilled some of it…and I ate some of it.
POP: That skull was our only evidence, Lou! Well this case has just been flushed down the toilet.
POL: Oh yeah. And I flushed some of it down the toilet too.
MS: Well then, in that case I think that I’ll be going.
POP: Lou, will you do me a favor and leave us alone for a minute?
POL: Hey, it was good to see you again Mr. Sherman! Hope to see you soon.
MS: Oh, I’m sure you will. I’m here everyday. Say ‘hi’ to the wife and kids for me.
POL: Will do. Oh, and I didn’t forget-I still have your DVDs of ‘Silence of the Lambs’ and ‘American Psycho’. I’ll bring them for you tomorrow. Seeya! (exits)
MS: Well, Patty-we’ve been doing this dance for how many years now? You bring me in on trumped up charges with
either no evidence or lots of evidence that is quickly ingested by your partner…why don’t we just stop playing these silly games and tell each other how we really feel?
POP: You’re right. Let’s stop playing charades with each other’s hearts. Let’s stop holding the sex themed playing cards of lust so close to our heaving chests. Let’s tell each other the truth.
MS: Where do I begin? (takes her in his arms) Firstly- I killed that squirrel. Secondly- I love you.
POP: And I must tell you Mr. Sherman that I plan on killing you right now. (she pulls free and points her gun at him)
MS: I wasn’t expecting that.
POP: I wouldn’t have expected you to expect this.
MS: I thought that we had a rapport together! The way that you’d tell me I looked handsome in handcuffs, the way that you let me couchsurf at your place last summer….we went to your sister’s Bat Mitzvah together for Christ’s sake.
POP: It was all an elaborate scheme to earn your trust. Seventeen years of botching your murder cases just to get in your good graces.
MS: You won’t kill me, Patty. You don’t have the balls. You wouldn’t hurt a fly.
POP: Truth be told-it was ME who killed that extra tentacled octopus I told you about earlier. And truth be told, I do have balls. And a fully functional and uncircumsized penis.
MS: But….but….Patty…you’re Jewish!
POP: And I consider killing you a mitzvah! (raises gun and pulls trigger but it is empty, nothing happens. She looks at it confused)
Police Officer Lou: (enters) Oh, sorry to interrupt. I just wanted to say goodnight to Mr. Sherman again. Goodnight, buddy. I love you. Sweet dreams. I’ll see you tomorrow. Oh and sorry Patty, I ate all the bullets that were in your gun. Sorry. (to MS in a whisper) I love you.
MS: So where do we go from here?
POP: I just wish we could start all over again. Go back to the way things were. I’ve been such a fool-been so afraid of love-
MS: I didn’t ask for any excuses, Patty. Besides, that was ‘us’ in the past. I live in the now. And right now-I want someone to spend the rest of my ‘nows’ with. I’ll tell you what…I’m going over to the wharf to club some catfish to death. And I sure would like some company.
POP: How could I say ‘no’ to someone who looks so handsome in handcuffs? (they link arms and walk for the exit)
MS: I know a nice little vegan cafe on the way. They have a great kosher menu. (they exit)

(End Scene)

Nathan: You know, I’ve made up my mind-I’m ready to quit.
Paul: Good. For. You. Nathan. I will support you one hundred percent.
N: Its just that I’ve faced up to myself you know-I’ve seen clearly that this is the road I need to take.
P: I didn’t want to say anything, but you’ve been wasting away, looking tired all the time….
N: That’s right Paul, and that’s why I need to quit my job.
P: And I’ve got your stapler and family photos already in a cardboard box…I pack up your stuff everyday at lunch-just in case.
N: Thanks, Paul. I’ll just take that box from you and also my unemployment check thank you very much.
P: That’s not really how it works, Nathan.
N: Too soon isn’t it? I need to go home and Tweet about how awesome it is being unemployed and getting checks from the government for NOT working right? And then the money starts pouring in? Or do I need to get stoned before noon and then BBQ half naked on my porch until my stupid employed neighbors and wife come home?
P: Actually, Nathan, Uh, you need to get fired to get unemployment.
N: Are you hiring?
P: We happen to have a youth pastor position that JUST opened up a minute ago, yes.
N: You see, that’s the problem. I hate kids.
P: I know you do. For the last 12 years, you’ve said that to me everyday.
N: Don’t you have anything else open?
P: We’re looking for an accountant, an organist and we are also in need of a bell ringer.
N: Like a hunchback?
P: You will need to get a hunch implant, yes.
N: A hunch! I’ll have to have it removed each weekend for my carousing. And Trinity Baptist doesn’t have health coverage and I can’t shell out thousands of dollars to have a deformity removed each week just so I can still cruise the red light district!
P: These are things you should have thought about BEFORE quitting. You are always acting too quickly.
N: I know.
P: Sure that’s a helpful characteristic in some cases-like when that demon possessed woman tried to spit venom at me and you shielded me with an impromptu cross made of two bread sticks. But it can be a detriment too, Nathan. Like when you baptized the Thompson kid while it was still being born.
N: That would have been a great idea had it not been a breech birth! Of course, since the soul lives in the brain, that Thompson kid will go to hell, but that can’t be pinned on me.
P: …I’ve been thinking.
N: About hiring me.
P: Yes. As the new head pastor.
N: But…Paul. What will you do?
P: I’ll go back to farming. Where I belong. I’ve sown the wild oats of the gospel in this little chapel for well on to 30 years now, and I think its time I packed up the shovel of my Bible, the hoe of my overhead projector, the wagon of my ‘thought of the day’ calendar, the silo of my guitar-
N: I get the picture…Now am I hired or what?
P: Yes, son. Trinity Baptist is in your keeping now.
N: Praise God! You’ve passed on the keys to the kingdom and now its me who can rule this Church with an iron fist!
P: Iron fist in a velvet glove I hope.
N: No, most likely an iron fist in a chain mail glove. My first order of business will be to fire myself so that I can live off the fat of the land-collect unemployment, be a welfare queen…
P: Again, I don’t think you understand unemployment at all. You won’t be able to fire yourself. That’s just a fancy way of saying you quit.
N: I really should have read up on this whole unemployment thing. Now I’ve got a church full of idiots to run, no youth pastor…
Hubjub: (a hunchback) Hello. I’m Hubjub. I’m here for the organist job interview. (To Paul) Are you the pastor?
P: No, I’m a farmer.
N: I’m pastor of these parts. The name is Nathan-Pastor Nathan and don’t you forget it, Hobknob.
H: Hubjub.
N: You play the organ?
H: Not at all. 
N: Its a tough job market out there, Hufflepuff. I hate to tell you, but you’re competing against a high school drop out, a former GM CEO, and a Jonas Brother for that organist job. Do you have any references?
H: (To Paul) Will you be a reference?
P: Sure.
H: One hundred percent of farmers in this office recommend me.
N: That’s pretty convincing. But I’m still not sold.
H: (to Nathan) will you be a reference?
N: Sure.
H: Two out of three people in this office recommend me and one third of the people in this room will perform sex acts on his references.
P: Referencationalists.
N: Actually, we’re Baptists.
P: Wait-sex acts?
H: Sure! I’d do anything for a job. Except get training appropriate for the job I’m applying for.
N: Would you learn how to read in order to be an erotica reader to a blind man?
H: That I would do…
N: (stabs out his eyes with a pencil) Ahhhh!
H: …Hypothetically.
N: Ahh! I’m always acting too quickly!
P: We all have our weaknesses. Nothing to be ashamed of. God accepts everyone as they are.
H: My weakness is killing my coworkers. You hear about that triple homocide at Notre Dame last week?
N: Was that you?
H: You’re lookin’ at him! Oops. Sorry, no offense.
N: None taken. Wow. You still here, Paul? You hear that? We’re in the presence of a notorious hunchback! 
P: Yeah. I’m standing right next to you. My hand is on your shoulder. And my other hand is on your thigh.
N: (touches Paul’s hand and then his face) Your face is so smooth!
P: As a former pastor and current farmer I have to stay looking young-so I use face lotion and drink the blood of the innocent.
N: Its so hard to find an innocent nowadays isn’t it?
H: You’re telling me!
P: You said it.
N: You know what, HotTub? You’re hired.
H: As Organist!
N: No. As Pastor.
H: Yay! I’ve always wanted to be a pastor.
N: Under one condition. You hire me as church accountant and then fire me.
H: I’ll have to warn you, there will be a brief period where you will technically be my coworker.
N: That’s a chance I’m willing to take. 
P: Well, I should be going. I’ve got some fields to plow.
N: You’re not going to stick around and see if the hunchback kills me before he fires me or if I will attain my heart’s desire of being unemployed? You can’t stay to find out if I have some resolution?
P: I’d normally love to. But I have some job interviews to conduct at my farm.
H: You’re hiring? What position?
P: Mule.
H: Someone to pull your plow like a mule?
P: No, drug mule. I’m going to run a cocaine farm. 
N: Cocaine comes from a plant. That’s weird. I never thought about that. “Cocaine Farm”. Weird. 
H: I want to apply as a mule!
P: Do you have references? 
H: (To Nathan) Will you be a reference?
N: ….Oh! Are you talking to me? I’m sorry, I can’t see. Uh, sure I’ll recommend you. Paul, you should hire HumJaw here.
P: You’re hired!
H: (unsheaths his sword, stabs Paul in the heart)
P: Gaahhhhh!
N: See you guys! Take care! See you later. (Sits at desk)
H: Hello? I’m here for the job interview?
N: Gah! You scared me. Hello. My name is Nathan.
H: Yeah. I know.
N: HumblePie? Is that you?
H: No. My name is Hubjub.
N: Oh, good to meet you. Please have a seat.
H: Thanks. I’d like to apply for the organist position.
N: Have you ever considered being a pastor by chance?
H: Yay! I’ve always wanted to be a pastor!

(End scene)

1: Well, I would say its late Egyptian.
2: Most likely Ramses III. But I wouldn’t bet my camel on it.
1: I’ll bet the last of my water and food that its Ramses II period.
2: Let’s take a look in my iPhone’s ‘hieroglyph identification’ app. Hmm. Ramses III.
1: (Gulp) well, that’s interesting.
2: (taking the food and water from partner’s pack and putting it into their own)Ahhh, canned hummus. I love hummus.
1: I do too. (looking hungry)….Hey! Look! A mummy! I bet you its haunted.
2: Some mummies are haunted, yes. But its never a surefire thing. I wouldn’t bet my sunscreen on it.
1: I’ll bet you double or nothing for my food back.
2: You don’t have any food or water to put up to bet.
1: Triple or nothing.
2: You already have nothing. You could do a credit thing, take out a loan or…
1: or, bet my life!
2: or bet your life.
1: Its on.
2: I’m not sure exactly what ‘is on’.
1: I bet you my life that this mummy is haunted.
2: So if it is haunted you live and if it isn’t….
1: You can kill me.
2: You’re my best friend, research team coordinator, Doctoral advisor, kidney donee, half brother, and at times my lover. There is no other life I’d be more honored in ending.
1: Thank you. Besides, I would have slowly died of dehydration and starvation anyway, so really its helping me out.
2: That’s a good point.
1: Half of me hopes this mummy ISN’T haunted.
2: More than half, here.
1: (Picks up a jar) Hey, Mummy! I’m messing around with your stuff!
2: I think that you might need to desecrate it.
1: Like have sex with it.
2: Let’s start with making out and we can go from there.
1: (makes out with jar) Uh! This tastes horrible! (makes out some more) Oh! There’s a dead ol’ cat in here!
2: I thought that looked like a cat burial jar.
1: Uh….I’m getting its burial wrappings and cat hair caught in my teeth. Is that mummy moving yet?
2: A little, but not really in a scary way. Its just waving happily. (waves back) hello!
1: I have the worst luck ever.
2: Hey, luck is subjective.
1: How’s that?
2: I’m going to get my right kidney back.
1: True…I had grown attached to it though.
2: You just never learned your lesson! You remember last year when we went to Vegas and stayed in the Luxor hotel?
1: Of course! I lost my original right kidney in a bet there.
2: And that wasn’t enough to convince you that you have a gambling problem?
1: Gambling is only a problem when it interferes with your life.
2: Well, now its going to be ending your life.
1: Everybody’s got to go somehow. Better by the hand of your best friend and kidney donor in a pyramid than by say….old age or something.
2: (takes sword from sheath and approaches)
1: Hey! One last bet.
2: Okay.
1: I bet you my pith helmet that you’ll regret killing me.
2: Okay. (runs the sword through. 1 staggers gurgling and collapses. 2 waits then shrugs and takes 1’s pith helmet)
Mummy: Ohhhhh! I’m a haunted mummy!
2: The shedding of innocent blood has awoken you!
Mummy: No,
2: The making out with your cat has awoken you!
Mummy: No, I overheard that there’s an extra kidney to be had. I just love kidney pie. You ever had kidney pie?
2: No.
Mummy: I bet you’ll love it.
2: You’re on!

(End scene)

Tim is sleeping in his dark apartment and the phone rings.

Tim: ….Hello?
Dave: Tim!
T: Yeah, yeah, I’m here. Hello?
D: TIM!
T: Dave? Is that you? What is it? Oh my god….
D: Hey man.
T: Yeah, Dave! Are you all right?
D: I’m golden dude. What are you up to?
T: I’m sleeping. Is everything alright?
D: Yeah. Yeah. What? Are you sleeping?
T: I uh…yeah. I uh.
D: Why are you sleeping?
T: Its like uh, four in the morning. We’ve got to be at work in the morning-are you okay?
D: Dude-you got to work in the morning?
T: Tomorrow’s Tuesday. The Hamshire deal….the big eight o’ clock meeting, Dave!
D: Oh! That’s right tomorrow’s Tuesday! I totally lost track of time.
T: How do you lose track of days Dave? Christ! Why are you calling me? Is this about the meeting tomorrow?
D: Tim, dude I’m sorry man. No, I just called to say hi. I totally forgot about the meeting. I’m on vacation.
T: You’re on vacation?
D: I’m on vay-cay, baby. That’s cool about the meeting though. Good luck in there.
T: Thanks. I guess. Why did you call me at four in the morning again?
D: Why do you keep saying its four in the morning?
T: Because it is!
D: Where are you right now?
T: My bed!
D: In L.A.?….Oh, dude….I’m sorry.
T: You’re on vacation?…Aren’t you supposed to present the proposal?
D: I emailed you the powerpoint.
T: No you didn’t.
D: No, I just did. You didn’t see it?
T: I’m not in the office-
D: You got your Blackberry with you?
T: I’m sleeping!
D: Well, when you check it, it’ll be there.
T: A powerpoint.
D: Well, not a powerpoint. A Word document. But you’ll be able to put it into a powerpoint.
T: For tomorrow’s meeting?
D: Yeah. I put in some links to Google images that are cool too. Like one of a bar graph and one of a poodle wearing sunglasses and stuff. Check it out.
T: I will. In the morning. Waitaminute: where are you?
D: New York. I thought I told you.
T: No.
D: Yeah! I’m in New York! Can you believe it?
T: No.
D: Yeah. That’s why I guess I thought you’d be up.
T: Because its what? Seven o’ clock there?
D: Is it? I dunno. I’ve been out drinking all night.
T: Goodnight, Dave.
D: Are you in a bad mood?
T: Well, Dave-
D: Because you really shouldn’t stress about tomorrow’s meeting. There probably won’t be any lay-off announcements tomorrow anyway.
T: There’s going to be lay-offs?
D: …Maybe I shouldn’t have said anything.
T: You know about lay-offs? Ms. Lindel said she wouldn’t lay anyone off this fiscal year.
D: Well, she would tell YOU that.
T: What does that mean?
D: I shouldn’t have said anything. Look, dude. I’m sorry I’m talking your ear off. I should let you go-you got like a pivotal career making or breaking meeting tomorrow and you’ve still got to get a powerpoint together for it, so I should let you go.
T: No, wait! You got to tell me what you know about lay-offs! Am I being fired?
D: Dude, Tim. Relax, alright? I’ve got to let you go. I’m meeting some ladies at the club. Talk to you later!

Dave hangs up and Tim clicks his phone down. He tries to rest, but turns uneasily. He finally sits up again turns on the light and calls Dave back on the phone.

Dave: Hello this is Dave.
Tim: Am I being fired tomorrow?
D: Who’s speaking?
T: Me! Tim.
D: Did you get my email about the presentation?
T: No!
D: Oh. I was just expecting you to call when you tried to open it because there will probably be some problems opening it. I used an old Mac letter template and I think it was a pirated copy because I found it on an offshore porn website.
T: Dave. What did Ms. Lindel tell you about my job? Am I being fired?
D: Mom didn’t say anything really. Its not that big a deal.
T:….Ms. Lindel is your mom?
D: Uh…
T: The boss is your  mom?….Dave?
D: Step-mom. Officially she’s my step mom….But she has legally adopted me.
T: Now it all makes sense.
D: What does?….I mean speak up, I can hardly hear you. We’re doing some coke over here and its getting hard to pay attention to what you’re saying.
T: I said it makes sense why you get away with being drunk at the office and why you get raises every year and yet other more talented and hard working people get fired!
D: That sounds accusatory, Tim. I’m not a sensitive guy. But I could take offense. Really. I’m not sensitive or caring at all, and I arguably have no emotions. But you’re getting close to poking a tender spot, here.
T: You know what, Dave? Do you know what I’m going to do?
D: You’re going to tell me off and then hang up the phone and then say something snarky that reincorporates.
T: As funny as that might be, Dave, I’m going to rather divulge my sinister plans to get back at you.
D: I don’t like that ending so much.
T: I didn’t think you would. I’m going to go in to work tomorrow with some Bree cheese-
D: No! You wouldn’t! That’s Mom’s favorite!…
T: And I’m going to romance your mother by feeding her Bree cheese on rye crackers-
D: Oh no!
T: Then I’m going to marry her and through years of manipulation and devious plotting, I will wrestle her job as CEO from her, take over the company, and then I will fire you!
D: Tim….Can’t we make a deal? I mean let’s be reasonable. Please.
T: Too late, Dave. The wheels have already been set in motion. Tim gets out of bed and begins clicking on his iPhone I’m ordering some Bree cheese to be delivered to me right now.
D: You’d have to order all the way from New York at this time of day its like seven o’ clock!
T: Four. I’m in L.A.
D: That only confirms my point! There’s no place in L.A. where you can buy fancy cheese at four in the morning!
T: I’ve found a store already called “Bree Storehouse For The Conniving” in New York and it says that they can rush order it in time for the meeting!
D: Dave looks up and sees he’s standing next to the sign for the store-he motions to the teller to buy some Bree
T: They have one wheel of Bree left and I’m ordering it right now! Hahahahha! What?
D: Did the website tell you the last one was just bought?
T: ….Yes. How did you know?…..realizes and silently admits defeat Dave, I should let you go. I’ve got to get ready for the Hamshire meeting tomorrow.
D: Tim…I’m sorry I woke you up tonight buddy.
T: That’s okay. Don’t worry about it.
D: Have a good morning, buddy.
T: Yeah. You too. Hangs up phone his girlfriend Brenda rolls over from where she’s been hidden in the covers
Brenda: Would you really have married your boss just to get back at Dave? You’ve always told me you don’t want to get married.
T: Oh, Brenda-you know that was an empty threat. It would have never worked out between me and Ms. Lindel anyway. I’m lactose intolerant.
B: You’re lactose intolerant? Uh. I think we need to start seeing other people.
The phone rings
T: Can you answer it? I can’t take anymore. Is holding is head in his hands
B: Hello? Oh, Hi Dave! Yeah. Laughs again and again flirtatiously. Yeah, dinner sounds nice. Yeah, I’m single now. Friday sounds great. Yeah, he’s here. He’s just a sour puss right now. Okay. I’ll tell him. Night, Dave! See you soon. That was Dave.
T: Really. sarcastic
B: Yeah. He said that he’d thought of something snarky you could say that would reincorporate but he forgot it. He’ll call back though. Well. I’ll see you, loser. She leaves in her pj’s and slams the door. The phone rings. Tim looks at it despairingly. Finally concedes to pick it up
T: Hello?
Francois: In thick French accent Allo! This is Francois from Bree Storehouse for The Conniving. Yes, the fellow who bought our last wheel of Bree returned it. Would you still like it sent to you express?
T: Yes….Oh, and do you sell Lactaid?
F: But of course.
T: hahahahahahahahahaha!
curtain

Expect a lot of controversy this week.
Ugh.
There’ll be many a ‘flame war’ among internet
trolls and the African Bishops, I just know it.
You know, there were nay sayers when
Pope Clement the Eleventh said there was
no grace outside the Church.
And you know what?
They burned in hell.
And when Pope Gregory the Sixteenth said that all Bible
interpretation is left to the infalliable Magisterium of the Church
there were those hipster ‘blog’ journalists who chimed in.
And you know what?
They had unusually high viewing records for that week.
Because religion sells.
And controversy ups blog hype.
And you know what?
The current Pope is expecting and ready for all that
you internet-dwelling-microwave-baked-beans-eating-nerd-chic
Mac-using-jerks can throw at him.
Well, I for one appreciate the spirit and daring prophetic
vision that the Pope had this week when he declared my perpetual virginity.

And a Papal decree of virginity is WAY better than any ol’
evangelical ‘born again virgin’ bullshit.
You tell someone you’re a ‘born again virgin’ as they’re about
to fist their way into another fistula and you’re bound to get laughed
out of the academy.
Evangelicalism won’t get you anywhere in serious religious discussion
or in the sack.
But a statement written in Latin will sew you tighter than the security at Dulles.
That’s the breaks, folks. I wish all you sluts good luck-as for me and my perpetual virginity,
we’re heading over to the House of Blues on Sunset!

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