Moving Mannequins

Semi-biographical

FADE IN

EXT. AVENUE – NIGHT

A man steps off the bus, wearing glasses, hoodie over his head, backpack on his chest. As he is getting closer to his destination, he sees 3 white men wearing yellow shirts with ‘Event Staff’ on the back. A couple of feet away from them, he sees a black guy trying to get their attention. The man steps off the sidewalk when he crosses paths with the Event Staffers, as they were obstructing his path.

EVENT STAFFER 1

How you doing, sir?

THE MAN

EVENT STAFFER 2

(whispering)

His hand.

EVENT STAFFER 3

(whispering)

See.

He steps back on the sidewalk and crosses the black guy.

BLACK GUY

You got your glasses on, don’t it?

THE MAN

BLACK GUY

Aye, one of them white boys called you a Ni**er! You heard it? I know you heard it, bruh.

THE MAN

The man stops walking and looks up at the high-rise building to his left and sees someone peeking out their blinds. They exchange glares for 5 seconds then the man continues walking.

DISSOLVE 

The black guy wanders aimlessly in a nearby park. He hears leaves crunching behind him. He turns around and sees 3 people jogging along the track. He notices they are wearing bright yellow shirts. He thinks they chose that color to help them be seen, as the park doesn’t have light poles. As they get closer, the black guy steps to the side to clear the trail. But when they cross his path, they stop and beat him within an inch of his life. Before they vanish, they place a cellphone in his palm.When the man regains consciousness a few minutes later, he calls 911. 

An aerial camera view shows 3 police cars pull up to the house where the 3 white men were doing event staffing. As the 3 white guys are getting arrested, an ambulance speeds by, presumably on their way to the park or rushing the black guy to the hospital. 

The aerial camera view turns out to be the POV from a balcony of a high-rise apartment building nearby. A man is sitting on a bench with a mannequin on his left and right side. All 3 are wearing yellow shirts. He holds a pair of binoculars to each mannequins eyes so they can see the events going on below. He pretends one of the mannequins says something to him.

THE MAN

I don’t need the binoculars. I got my glasses, don’t it? Bob, hand me that wet towel so I can get this shit off my face, will you? Gimme that! And Tom, why do you still have your hands on my hips? Get off!

He disconnects something that conjoined them. The man grabs the towel from the mannequin’s hands and takes a swipe at his forehead, revealing darker skin. He was wearing white make-up. He then throws the towel on the camera lens.

FADE TO BLACK

Publishing my first comic since June 2012 on Valentines.

“What Did Big Girl Put In Snickers Home How Old Is Tupac Dead Guy”

 

 

FADE IN

INT. TAX OFFICE – NIGHT

Flatulence. Tax Man quietly reads the ingredients on the back of a Babe Ruth. As he unwraps the candy, it falls between his thighs, in the toilet. He jumps up. 

TAX MAN

Oh shit! Which one is which? 5 second rule, 5 second rule, 5 second rule. 4, 3, 2, THIS ONE! Yup, yup, roasted pea-

Tax Man hears knocking on the store’s door. He investigates.

CUSTOMER

Y’all closed? 

TAX MAN

No sir! We open. Just had the door locked while I was in the back.

CUSTOMER

[pulls handle] You gonnnneee … open it?

TAX MAN

[looks at watch. It’s 8PM. He notices the customer doesn’t have papers in his hand. He looks back at the customer’s car and sees a woman in the driver seat. She smiles. He smiles back.] Yeah, I’m gone open it. What is wrong with me? So how can I help you today?

CUSTOMER

I was wondering could y’all print off my 2013 W2.

TAX MAN

I’m new, and not sure. Let me make a call to my supervisor. Hold on!

SUPERVISOR

Hello.

TAX MAN

Yeah, I got a customer who wants to print off his 2013 W2. Is that in my abilities?

SUPERVISOR

I could walk you through it over the phone, but it’s gone take over 20 minutes. It’s best he goes to another location. Ask him does he live in the area.

TAX MAN

Sir, do you stay around the neighborhood?

CUSTOMER

Yeah.

TAX MAN

Yeah.

The SUPERVISOR gives the TAX MAN directions to a nearby store. Like something whispered into the thousandth ear, the TAX MAN says the directions wrong, which prompts the SUPERVISOR to say … 

SUPERVISOR

May I talk to him?

TAX MAN

Uhhh … yeah.

When TAX MAN hands CUSTOMER his phone, he turns around and walks towards the door, as if leaving. 

TAX MAN

*thinking* The hell?!?!

TAX MAN walks ahead CUSTOMER and stands to the side of the entrance in an inconspicuous fighting stance. CUSTOMER stops and talks to the SUPERVISOR. As he is getting the directions, he constantly smiles and says, “Yes mam.”  Anticipating the end of their conversation, the TAX MAN continuously raises his hand to get his phone back. 

CUSTOMER

Okay, thank you.

CUSTOMER hands TAX MAN his phone and walks out. TAX MAN immediately locks door. After the TAX MAN watches the car pull out the parking lot, he presses and holds the home button on his phone. 

TAX MAN

Siri, why didn’t you tell me to put it on speakerphone? I almost had to punch that guy!

SIRI

Okay! Here’s what I found on the web for ‘What did big girl put in Snickers home how old is Tupac dead guy.’

FADE TO BLACK

“Kids, I’m Not Carjacking Y’all, Ohh-tay?”

 

 

FADE IN

EXT. PARKING LOT – DAY

A man is walking away from a store. In the parking lot, he opens the passenger-side door on a car. He sees two kids in the backseat.

MAN

Oh, I’m sorry!

WOMAN

(screaming)

Hey! What are you doing?

MAN

I’m sorry, I thought this was my ….

WOMAN

(screaming)

He’s trying to steal my car with my babies inside!

MAN

What? No! I thought this was …

The woman pulls a gun out of her purse and runs in their direction. The man jumps on the hood of her car to get an overview of the parking lot in search of his ride. He doesn’t see it. When he looks down at the windshield he notices the woman left the keys in the ignition. The woman fires a shot at him. She misses. In a panic and without another choice, he jumps in her car and drives off.

MAN

Kids, kids, I’m not carjacking y’all. I. Am. Not. Carjacking. Y’all. Okay?

CHILD 1

Ohh-tay.

The woman shoots at the rear end of the car.

MAN

[pokes head out window] Your kids are in the car, you asshole!

The man pulls out his cellphone. 

FRIEND

Hello.

MAN

Where the hell are you?

FRIEND

I went across the street to pay my T-Mobile bill. I’m on my way back now.

MAN

I’m not there!

FRIEND

What you mean?

MAN

After you left, a car that looked just like yours pulled up in the parking spot.

FRIEND

That’s crazy!

MAN

I thought it was yours and opened the door. This woman came out the store screaming I was stealing her car.

FRIEND

Where are you now?!

MAN

In her car!!!

FRIEND

Huh?

MAN

She shot at me!

FRIEND

Shit!

MAN

There are kids in the backseat, dude!

Police sirens sound off. 

MAN

She called the cops! Meet me at MLK boulevard, where Selma hospital is. Kids …

CHILD 2

Yaaa?

MAN

I did not carjack y’all.

CHILD 1

Ohh-tay.

The man pulls over. The camera is from his POV now. He puts his hands over his eyes. When he takes his hands off his eyes the scene transitions with him sitting on the curb running his hands through his hair, thus finishing the motion. A second cop car pulls up, with the woman riding as a passenger. 

WOMAN

Where are my kids, you bastard?

OFFICER

They’re over there with my partner, mam.

WOMAN

Why is he just sitting on the curb and not in the back of y’all car? Arrest him!

OFFICER

We want to see if his story checks out. He said you and his friend have the same car. You got the same parking spot he had when he drove off to another parking lot.

MAN

She shot at me!

WOMAN

You believe that bull?

OFFICER

I’m sure this is a big misunderstanding,  but if your friend doesn’t pull up in a car that is her car’s twin you are going to jail, my friend.

MAN

I’m not lying! I told him to meet me here.

OFFICER

He’s taking an awful long time to. What’s his name?

A dozen people riding bicycles pass by. The one trailing behind the group stops and takes off their helmet. It’s his friend. 

MAN

Ayo!

FRIEND

Sorry, I’m late! You not gone believe what happened when I came back to the parking lot. Some guy saw my ‘for sale’ sign in the window and paid me 3 times what I was asking for. Then hit me with the ‘and one more thing’ and guess what that one more thing was [bounces the front tire]. Isn’t that awesome?

MAN

[looks at the sky] Nooooooo!!!

The scream is heard throughout the city. Distant people turn their heads. Flock of birds fly off. A dog laying down covers its ears. The guy who bought the friend’s car is at a red-light, smiling, listening to music at a low-level and wiping the dust off the dashboard when suddenly all the windows burst.  

FADE TO BLACK

 

 

How An Employee Who Never Washes Their Hands At Work Became A Hero In FlexTronics’ Restrooms Everywhere

 

One of several plates I had at Shoney's.

One of several plates I had at Shoney’s.

 

Memphis, TN — FlexTronics replace blowdryers with paper towels after 8 employees were trapped in the bathroom for 35 minutes.

The first employee of the eight who got the flatulence out his nose by sniffing the lunches of generous co-workers shared his horrific experience:

It was terrible! It was terrible! Oh my God! It was 8:30 in the morning, my first break. I had to pee. Two dudes were already in the restroom, on the toilet. I put my shirt over my nose and used the stall furthest away from them, close to the sinks. If you know me, you know I hate using the stand-up stalls because I feel awkward as hell having a conversation with another dude while my junk in my hand. But it was just us 3. Then lo and behold! Soon as I start peeing, this other dude comes in, skips the stall on the end, uses the one right next to mines, talking about he got the Love & Hip Hop DVD’s for sale. I zipped up my pants, washed my hands, put ‘em under the blowdryer, and that’s when it happen … I was stuck in the bathroom until somebody else came in. So, I pretended like I had OCD and kept washing my hands. I was gone tailgate the other dude when he opened the door. But he had OCD too! After 10 minutes go by, dude just looked at me and said, ‘Look! My mama told me it’s time to get out the tub when your fingers wrinkle. I’m not touching that door handle.’ Can you believe we both did laundry over the weekend? We even washed our smocks! So, we couldn’t open the door with our clothes. Our feet were too big to fit through the door handle hoop. We asked the guys on the toilet for tissue or a seat cover. They just kept repeating the word ‘occupied.’ It was terrible!

15 minutes later, the two employees heard what they called a “royal flush.” One of the guys on the toilet unlocked the stall door, “moonwalked” right pass the sinks and opened the door to “freedom.” It was Willy Johnson, a man who hasn’t washed his hands in 11 years. Upon exiting, the men heard a banging on the ladies’ restroom door. Johnson opened the door and women ran out coughing. One even jumped into his arms. Apparently, five women were trapped in the ladies’ room for similar reasons. The trapped employees also saw something outside the door which further delayed their rescue, causing people to walk 5.28 miles to the other lavatories: The custodian’s cleaning cart.

In a company email, FlexTronics CEO, Mike McNamara, said to honor Johnson’s heroism, the 4 month employee’s hands will be the first illustration of the Six Stage Hand-Washing Technique on the walls in restrooms across all locations. When asked his thoughts of becoming the official hand model for the company, Johnson said, “I can handle it!”

In an effort to protect the environment, FlexTronics uses blowdryers in their restrooms to prevent employees from clogging up toilets with paper towels.

Why you think Johnson hasn’t washed his hands in over a decade?

 

You Need A Ride? (Twerking At Walmart)

Based on actual events

EXT. WAL*MART – AFTERNOON

Couple leaves Wal-Mart. The man pushes the grocery basket to their car while the woman walks 2 steps ahead with her arms folded. 

WOMAN

Whatever, Cletus! Whatever! You cheated on me!

CLETUS

Baby, how did I cheat on you? I was looking for that lotion you like. I was on aisle 5, then I looked at the sign above the next aisle and it said, “Asian Foods, Hispanic Foods, Crackers, Chicken, Twerking.” I didn’t know when I went on that aisle I was actually gone see girls shaking their ass!

WOMAN

But it didn’t say lotion, Cletus! It didn’t say lotion!

CLETUS

I was curious! Gawd!

Two men near a car parked next to the couple’s get their attention. 

SOME GUY 1

Hey, pardon us!

WOMAN

[looks at guy]

SOME GUY 1

We locked our keys in the car, and can’t afford a locksmith. Would y’all happen to have a hanger?

CLETUS

Yeah, we just bought a lot of ‘em.

WOMAN

No, I just bought a lot of ‘em! How you gone offer them one of my hangers, Cletus? Who got the exhaustive wardrobe here? Huh?

CLETUS

Look! Ask her!

SOME GUY 1

May we, madam?

WOMAN

Oh, you’re so polite! Yes you may, handsome! [looks back at Cletus, smirking]

CLETUS

[shakes head]

SOME GUY 2

Thank you! [grabs the metal coat hanger and goes to work]

As the two men work on the door, the couple put their groceries in their car. Suddenly, they hear a loud screech. The two men pull off quickly. That’s when a person runs into the parking space with grocery bags in their hands, dropping food everywhere, screaming … 

PERSON

My car!!!

The couple looks at each other in shock, communicating in animated facial expressions. 

CLETUS

You need a ride?

PERSON

Yeah … follow that car!

This time, the couple communicates in thought-reading, saying …. 

CLETUS

*thinking* Least we can do!

WOMAN

*thinking* Hell nah! If we catch up to them, they gone say we helped them. The hangers are on our receipts, fool. We accessories to the crime, Cletus! Accessories! You too pretty to go to jail, Cletus!

Cletus nods at woman in agreement, then looks at the person, saying … 

CLETUS

You can’t have a ride!

As the couple’s car screeches off quickly, the person picks up a bent-out-of-shape hanger off the ground and throws it at the rear window of the couple’s car. 

FADE TO BLACK

Practicing Selective Mutism At Jobs You Hate

IMG_0032

Dear Har-old,

One day you will indiscriminately hire a co-worker from a shit job to help with something in your dream job. This will be somebody you worked at least 3 months with. Y’all only exchanged hellos and goodbyes. But now, the words y’all are putting in-between is over lunch, over fulfilling projects, even over each other houses. Y’all aren’t just co-workers anymore. Y’all are best friends in real life. One day they will ask you, “Why didn’t we do stuff like this before?” And you will say, “It wasn’t personal. It was strictly business. Even the steady conflicts. Had I didn’t practice selective mutism at that shit job and engaged in small talk to make time go by quicker I would’ve been 65 before I knew it and there for 25 years with my own parking space. I wanted slow time. I didn’t want to have fun. I wanted to feel like SpongeBob in that episode where he was trying to make time go faster and did all this stuff and only 1 minute had pass. I wanted to feel every damn second of my 8 hour shift. I wanted my entrepreneurial spirit to suffer. I knew it was strong enough to not get crushed. I don’t know what happened in my dreams that night, but one morning I woke up and said FUCK THIS … now here we are!”

Futuristically yours,

Har+new

P.S.

I know taxes is seasonal but quit your job. Don’t play it safe! Focus on doing taxes. This been 3 years in the making! Make as much money as you can. Save. Keep your goal in mind. Your next employer should be Google/YouTube.

Why Companies Should Use “Fire” Over “Terminate” When Letting Employees Go

FADE IN

INT. YOUR COMPANY – AFTERNOON

EMPLOYEE

Hey, Charles, is Amber okay? I haven’t seen her around in 2 weeks.

SUPERVISOR (CHARLES)

Did she mean something to you? I never seen y’all two …

EMPLOYEE

… talk? Yeah, I mean, we never had a conversation, but she always caught my eye. I’m just curious.

SUPERVISOR

She was terminated.

EMPLOYEE

(surprisingly)

Oh my God! Seriously? By who?

SUPERVISOR

Us.

EMPLOYEE

What, what do you mean by us?

SUPERVISOR

US, the company.

EMPLOYEE

Who in the company?

SUPERVISOR

Me. Frank wanted to do it, but I had to be the one to handle it. This was personal.

EMPLOYEE

And you’re just gonna … confess to me like that?

SUPERVISOR

I terminate people all the time, man [giggles]. It’s no big deal. It’s life!

EMPLOYEE

All, all the time? What?! What did Amber do? She wouldn’t drop the box cutter?

SUPERVISOR

Too many tardies.

The employee flashbacks to last week when they was called in the office to discuss their own attendance for the past 5 weeks: tardies and absences. The words, “Start making it on time or else,” from the company’s representative, echoes in the employee’s head.

EMPLOYEE

(mumbles)

Terminate is or else?

THE NEXT DAY …

INT. YOUR COMPANY – MORNING

A car pulls up on the company’s lot, breaking the 5 MPH speed limit, double parks. Someone jumps out the car and runs into the building. It’s the employee. The supervisor waits at the clock where workers swipe their badge. 

SUPERVISOR

Well, well, well … you’re one minute late!

EMPLOYEE

(rapidly)

That turn signal light changes so fast. It was 3 cars ahead of me. ‘Bout time it was my turn it changed to red. I was sitting there for like 7 minutes.

SUPERVISOR

No more excuses! [puts hand inside jacket]

EMPLOYEE

He got a gun! [knocks out supervisor with punch]

All 42 employees in earshot of “He got a gun!” scream and run towards the exit, trampling the supervisor in the process. While the supervisor’s motionless body lies on the ground, a pink slip waving in the air falls on his face. 

FADE TO BLACK

 

Taxi Driver Collateral: Travis Bickle Meets Vincent The Hitman

Based on true story

FADE IN

INT. TRAVIS APARTMENT – MORNING

Tuesday, December 2, 2014, 7:15AM

TRAVIS

(phone rings) Hello.

FRIEND

Hey Travis! My car won’t start.

TRAVIS

[sighs]

Okay, well, I can’t afford to miss another day of work, so I’ll call a cab.

FRIEND

I still should be able to pick you up. I’m getting a boost off at 9.

TRAVIS

Cool.

40 minutes later …

INT. COMPANY’S HEADQUARTERS/CAB  – MORNING

CAB DISPATCHER

(phone rings) Hello.

TAXI DRIVER

Hey, Miss Carol, I got a problem with a customer …

CAB DISPATCHER

[giggles] Why are you wasting your time arguing with him?

TAXI DRIVER

We passed that. He’s paying with debit. When he tries to get his receipt the monitor in the back says “Printer not connected”  but the monitor up front says it is. He already swiped his card twice. I don’t wanna make him do it again.

CAB DISPATCHER

[indistinct chatter]

TAXI DRIVER

She said just call up there around 9 when the cashier is there and she can email you a receipt.

TRAVIS

[sighs] Aight.

CAB DRIVER

Sure you don’t won’t me to drop you off at work?

TRAVIS

Nah, I’ll walk the rest of the way.

Travis gets out the cab and starts walking.

CAB DISPATCHER

You didn’t drop him off at work?

CAB DRIVER

Nah, he told me to just stop the car and let him out.

CAB DISPATCHER

 He mad or nah? [giggles]

CAB DRIVER

Hey don’t put me in for no calls for the next 30 minutes I need to run an errand.

Scene ends with Travis walking.

INT. FRIEND’S CAR – AFTERNOON

Tuesday, December 2, 2014, 3:30PM

TRAVIS

Let me see your phone.

FRIEND

[passes phone]

BANK OF AMERICA

[automate system]

As of December 2nd 2014, your available balance is $125.07.

FRIEND

Why you looking like that for?

TRAVIS

I got $125.07 on my card.

FRIEND

So?

TRAVIS

I suppose to have $315. That taxi company overcharged $38 5 times. And he … did it on purpose!

FRIEND

He? On purpose?

TRAVIS

The cab driver … for our argument and for him not getting more money. I gave him the address to Taco Bell.

FRIEND

I thought you was going to work?

TRAVIS

The McDonald’s next to it. I wanted to eat breakfast first.

TRAVIS

When I got in the car, I said we gone hit the express way. He said, “Where you think I was going?” His tone made me feel like he thought I was being condescending. He had a bad attitude. We was already driving at this point and I didn’t want to be late trying to catch another cab. I noticed he had his phone in his lap so I assumed he was on Google Maps. When we missed my exit, I said, “Where you going?” He got loud and said, “Look! I can’t read your mind!” and start accusing me of creating an argument because I didn’t wanna pay.

FRIEND

Whet?!

TRAVIS

I just told him to stop the car and let me out. Luckily, at this point, I was 20 minutes from my job walking. Then the cherry on the cake was when the printer wouldn’t give me my receipt. I swiped twice so I don’t understand how I got charged 5 times. The fare was actually 42 dollars but he said I only had to pay 38. But a 190 dollars is off my fucking card. He got me!

INT. COMPANY’S HEADQUARTERS/TRAVIS APARTMENT – DAY

Wednesday, December 3, 2014, 7:30AM

RUTHIE

[phone rings] Hello

TRAVIS

Hey, I talked to you yesterday about an overcharge

RUTHIE

I remember your voice.

TRAVIS

You said the system charged me twice. But I was charged 5 times. 190 dollars.

RUTHIE

We only show two transactions.

TRAVIS

And I show 5. I had $315 in my account before this. My bank can fax y’all the screenshot!

RUTHIE

They can do that, but we can’t refund money that we don’t see on our end. The system only shows 2 transactions. We refunded one of them back to you and only charged you for the $38 you was suppose to pay.

TRAVIS

I need my money back! That’s my rent money! That’s all I have!

RUTHIE

Our system only shows 2 transactions. One in which you were suppose to pay and one in which was refunded back to you. I don’t see these other 3 charges. Did you give the driver your card?

TRAVIS

No, I had it in my hand the whole time. I swiped it both times.

RUTHIE

I don’t know what to tell you. Call your bank.

INT. TRAVIS APARTMENT – MORNING

Thursday, December 4, 2014, 8:00AM

BOA

We can’t do nothing about pending charges. You gotta let them post or fall off.

TRAVIS

The charges have been pending since Tuesday!!!

BOA

If they post we can then file a dispute claim. It usually take 3 business days for them to fall off. But there is a way you can get your money back same day.

TRAVIS

How???

BOA

Have them fax us a letter head with your name, card number, the total cost of the transactions and that they are gonna release them. And have them sign it.

TRAVIS

[sighs]

They’re not gonna do that! They only see 2 charges on their system. Okay, this happened on Tuesday. The charges are still pending. Look! My rent is due tomorrow! That’s all the money I have! If I don’t get my refund soon I will be evicted. When will they post or fall off?!?!

BOA

3 business days. This happened on Tuesday, so, Friday.

TRAVIS

Tomorrow.

INT. TRAVIS APARTMENT – MORNING

Friday, December 5, 2014, 6:37AM

TRAVIS

[dials numbers]

BOA

[automate system]

As of December 5, 2014, your available balance is $163.07

TRAVIS

Whet?! [hangs up]

INT. FRIEND’S CAR – MORNING

FRIEND

What’s wrong?

TRAVIS

Do you have $152 I can borrow until next week?

FRIEND

I’m broke my self, but I’ll see what I can do. Try not letting this affect your work.

INT. TACO BELL – NOON

Travis stares at his Frito Burrito and thinks about being evicted and moving back in with his mom.

CO-WORKER

You’ve been quiet all day today. I thought when we got to lunch I would at least hear some lip smacking but you’re not even eating. What’s wrong, dear?

TRAVIS

… nothing!

INT. FRIEND’S CAR – EVENING

TRAVIS

So?

FRIEND

No luck! I’m sorry!

TRAVIS

[sighs] Let me see your phone. Mines dead. Wish me luck! [dials numbers]

FRIEND

Who you calling?

BOA

As of December 5, 2014 your available balance is $315.07

TRAVIS

YESSSS!

INT. RIVERVIEW DRIVE – EVENING

The taxi driver walks up to his apartment unit and sees a eviction notice on his door.

INT. 308 EVES PLACE LEASING OFFICE – EVENING

ADRIAN

Hi Travis. What can I do for you?

TRAVIS

Pay rent …

ADRIAN

Here’s your receipt. Anything else I can do for you?

TRAVIS

Yeah, and this is for next month’s rent.

ADRIAN

I see they paying you well. Maybe I should work over there? [giggles]

Travis smirks and the scene transitions into what happened December 2nd after the taxi driver and Travis departed. 18 minutes into Travis walk he spots the taxi driver getting back into his cab and pulling off a lot (remember that errand he had to run?). Travis walks on the lot, pulls out a key and unlocks the door. The door to the leasing office in the apartment complex where the taxi driver lives. Travis works there. The scene ends with Travis picking up the money order the taxi driver slipped under the door.

FADE TO BLACK 

Awakening

To: Cj 31

My dearest Cj 31, You are closer to me now than when we first met. I can see you picking up the pieces from the past three years of your life. You have seen some dark days; days I could not prepare you for. And you felt pain that cut deep to the core of your soul. I heard your screams from nine years away. And during that time you blocked me out – trapped in the darkness of your experiences. I watched you sleep-walking through your days. I watched you at nights when you twisted in your sleep – disturbed by dark memories of the past that your mind replayed. And I watched, always frustrated that I cannot tell you if nine years from now you will be just fine. So I waited. I tapped on your shoulders and you shuffled. I tapped again and you answered. I was so happy that you finally responded to me so that I could let you know that:

Life teaches us…because you will never be able to put the broken pieces together again you must cleanbroken glass up and move on. Remember that the cleaning up process is different every time. Don’t compare one process to the next. It keeps you stuck. Sometimes you will get out of the situation unscathed. Other times – you will feel great pain; the sharp edges of the glass will cut you deep or the splinters will penetrate your flesh and you will bleed. This is not a reason to leave the  broken parts of your life untouched because it is only through cleaning up that you will learn the techniques of removing the splinters (the source of your pain). In time you will. 

Heal.

Cj 31, I see you picking up the pieces. I am still frustrated that I cannot disclose whether I am now proudAwakening of you. But I want you to know that I see you picking up the broken pieces. I see you.

Awakening.

 

Futuristically yours,

Cj40.

 

The Hopeless Itch

Based on true story

FADE IN

INT. CRAIG’S APARTMENT – NIGHT

CRAIG

[takes bag out of freezer, puts food in pan, places pan in oven] I wish I had some noodles to go with these Steak Fingers.

[text notification]

CRAIG (CONT’D)

(mumble)

“I miss fighting with you too.”

Craig frowns and calls the number.

HOPE

Hello.

CRAIG

It’s been 3 weeks!

HOPE

Ugh.

CRAIG

You must be bored?

HOPE

[laughs] How’d you know?

CRAIG

Find some other guy to use for entertainment, okay.

HOPE

No, seriously, I wrote a reply the next day, but I forgot to press the send button.

CRAIG

How you forget to do something as natural as that?

HOPE

I was hesitant about letting you know I missed you back. I was still upset at that about that “What’s up my ass” text after I texted you what’s up when I woke up. I didn’t respond to your earlier texts that day because I was sleep. And I was just sitting here bored, and you crossed my mind. I was wondering why you haven’t bothered me in a while then I looked at our texts and saw the text I sent you today still saved in a draft.

CRAIG

I don’t believe you!

 HOPE

So, you don’t wanna be my friend?

CRAIG

Whatever!

HOPE

What you doing?

CRAIG

Cooking, but I’m thinking about turning off this oven and ordering a pizza.

HOPE

You gone invite your friend over?

CRAIG

Seriously?

HOPE

Yeah, we been talking for months and haven’t met yet. You flaked me out twice.

CRAIG

I did not flake you out either time. The first time I …

HOPE

Let’s forget the past. Let’s have a meet and greet. I haven’t eaten in all day and I’m starving.

CRAIG

(reluctantly)

Okay!

HOPE

What kind you getting?

CRAIG

Papa John’s.

HOPE

Oooh, my favorite.

CRAIG

What toppings you want?

HOPE

It don’t matter. Long as it don’t have nuts on it. I’m allergic.

CRAIG

I’m getting one called John’s Favorite. It got sausage, pepperoni, and 6 different cheeses.

HOPE

That sounds good to me!

CRAIG

Well, I need to clean up and take a shower.

HOPE

We ain’t finna fuck!

CRAIG

Wheet?! Umm … what does me taking a shower have to do with sex??? I been working all day and haven’t taken one since I been home.

HOPE

Well, I’m not gone get ready.

CRAIG

Umm … why?

HOPE

Until I know it’s real.

CRAIG

What’s real?

HOPE

Us meeting. I mean, you flaked me out twice.

CRAIG

I did not …

HOPE

Let’s not talk about the past!

CRAIG

How you gone know it’s real?

HOPE

When you text me your address?

CRAIG

Okay, I’ll be ready in 30 minutes.

Craig and Hope hang up. Craig takes a shower. As he is cleaning the toilet, he thinks about Hope’s shower sex comment and becomes intensely offended.

CRAIG

[sends Hope text saying, “I don’t wanna fuck you. I’m not even attracted to you.”]

HOPE

[sends a reply saying, “K.”]

As Craig is continuing to clean the toilet, the single letter reply text Hope sent starts bothering him intensely.

CRAIG

[calls Hope]

HOPE

Hello.

CRAIG

Look! Our first meeting should be in the day time and in public. Not 10:30 at night at my house. Because I don’t want you thinking I’m trying to fuck you!

HOPE

Craig, it was a joke!

CRAIG

Was it?

HOPE

Yesss. You need to loosen up. I know you’re not attracted to me. You remind me all the time. [laughs]

CRAIG

I still think we should meet in public, when the sun is out. This is short notice for me. I hate not having a plan.

HOPE

You know I’m a Gemini, right?

CRAIG

So am I.

HOPE

So you should know I’m not gone let you keep flaking me out and being cool about it.

CRAIG

(sighs)

Just grab a piece of paper and a pen so you can write down my address.

25 minutes later 

EXT. CRAIG’S APARTMENT – NIGHT

When Hope gets out her car Craig hugs her for 30 seconds. 

CRAIG

Let me show you some of our amenities. That’s how pool.

INT. CRAIG’S APARTMENT – NIGHT

CRAIG

You know what a laundry room looks like. But I ought to show you the FIXED washers and dryers in there.

HOPE

Finally! I remember you telling me about that.

CRAIG

Here’s our gym. I will be in here tomorrow after eating this Papa Johns.

HOPE

[laughs]

INT. STUDY ROOM – NIGHT

CRAIG

And here’s our study room. They just added this room. It’s mostly for parents to get away from their kids so they can study for school. This where we gone wait on our pizza at. Just talk before we go up to my apartment.

Hope puts her belongings on the first table near the entrance.

CRAIG

Oh no! We gone sit here at this table in the corner.

HOPE

Your pictures don’t do you justice.

CRAIG

What do you mean?

HOPE

You look better in person.

CRAIG

You saying my photography skills are bad?

HOPE

No, just some people aren’t picture perfect.

CRAIG

That’s my first time hearing that. I must say you are taller than I expected and don’t take this the wrong way but look like a mature 40-year-old woman.

HOPE

I’m 27 and it’s the glasses I got on. I’m blind. I can’t see with my peripherals. On the way … [jumps up and screams]

CRAIG

What’s wrong?

HOPE

A bug fell in my hair. [removes hairband and shakes braids]

INT. HALLWAY – NIGHT

CRAIG

Before we go in, I just wanna hug you again.

HOPE

Umm, okay.

CRAIG

I just want you to feel loved.

HOPE

Loved?

CRAIG

Yeah, because of that unattractive stuff. You look better in person too. And also because we haven’t really got along since we met. [laughs]

HOPE

You got that right.

Craig hugs Hope for 15 seconds, rubbing her arms and upper back.

INT. CRAIG’S APARTMENT – NIGHT

CRAIG

You ready to eat some pizza?

HOPE

Yes, I am starving. I almost ate a turkey sandwich because I thought you was gone flake on me. But I had some hope in you.

CRAIG

I love your name … NO! NO! NO! Those 4 are your slices.

HOPE

[laughs] You act like we got half and half different toppings. It’s all the same.

CRAIG

Yeah, I know, but I had them cut it and designate which ones was mines and which ones was yours.

HOPE

Okay, cool.

An hour passes. 

CRAIG

You been scratching all night. You okay?

HOPE

I’m itching. My arms and my nose. Is it red?

CRAIG

Yeah it is. I apologize. I was cleaning up before you got here. I only got to the toilet. Although, I knew you wasn’t gone take a bath over here I was cleaning the tub too. There’s still dirty dishes in the sink. Could it be dust?

HOPE

I don’t know. Maybe I’m allergic to you. [laughs]

CRAIG

[laughs] This is embarrassing. I wanted to have my apartment clean before you got here.

HOPE

It’s okay because when I’m a slob. When I lived by myself I had stuff everywhere. I won’t wash my panties and bras until I’m down to the last one.

CRAIG

I just wanted everything to be so presentable for you.

HOPE

It’s okay. You’re a bachelor. I don’t know what it is. The only thing I’m allergic to is nuts and the pizza doesn’t have any.

CRAIG

Of course, not!

HOPE

Well, I’m getting tired.

CRAIG

You want your other 3 slices of pizza.

HOPE

Nah.

CRAIG

Sure? You only ate one slice. You gone be hungry on your lunch-break at work.

HOPE

I don’t think I’m going. I’m starting to get a stomach ache.

CRAIG

Well, let me walk you down.

EXT. CRAIG’S APARTMENT – NIGHT

HOPE

Well I’m happy I finally got to meet you!

CRAIG

Me too! Give me a hug!

Craig and Hope hug, with Craig picking Hope up off her feet squeezing her.

CRAIG

Okay, you go this way to get out of here. I’ll meet you at the gate.

Craig walks over to the exit while Hope drives around the apartment complex to leave. When she meets him there she stops the car to say parting words.

CRAIG

You made it! Well it was nice …

Another car pulls in and Hope pulls Craig closer to her car through the driver side.

HOPE

You almost got hit by a car!

CRAIG

Oh, I thought you was giving me another hug.

HOPE

Nah. I was saving your life. [laughs]

CRAIG

Text me when you get home so I know you made it there safely.

INT. CRAIG’S APARTMENT- NIGHT

The camera shows a closed elevator door. A manic cackle is heard in the background. As the number above the elevator door go from 1 to 10 the laughter becomes louder. When the number reaches 11 the doors open. Craig is on his knees. As Craig is crawling to his apartment door, which he is unable to find because he can’t see due to the tears in his eyes from laughing, the scene cuts to a sequence of events that happened just moments before Craig and Hope met: Craig placing a roach on the wall in the study room; Craig rubbing itching powder on the sleeves of his jacket; Craig sprinkling small nuts on 4 slices of pizza before re-entering the study room with Hope.

FADE TO BLACK

Buy 1, Get 1 Free Milkshake At Chik-Fil-A

Based on true story

FADE IN

INT. CHIK-FIL-A – DAY

EMPLOYEE

May I help the next person in line?

CUSTOMER

Hey.

EMPLOYEE

How are you doing today, sir?

CUSTOMER

Great.

EMPLOYEE

What can I get for you today?

CUSTOMER

I want 3 Chik-fil-A burgers …

EMPLOYEE

What?

CUSTOMER

3 Chik-Fil-A burgers …

EMPLOYEE

Who?

CUSTOMER

Huh?

EMPLOYEE

I’m sorry, sir, I’m having difficulty understanding you. Would you mind repeating your order?

CUSTOMER

I. Said. I. Want. Three. Chik. Fil. A. Burgers.

EMPLOYEE

Burgers? What are those?

CUSTOMER

Am I in Taco Bell or something? It’s right there on the menu … the Chik-Fil-A sandwich!

EMPLOYEE

Sandwichessss … there you go! Will that complete your order?

CUSTOMER

No. I also want a large fry. Aaannnddd gimme a large chocolate milkshake.

EMPLOYEE

How about I just get you the Chik-Fil-A combo and substitute the drink for that milkshake. It’ll be $1.60 more. Then add 2 Chik-Fil-A sandwichessss to your order. That way you’ll save some money compared to ordering those items individually. Is that fine?

CUSTOMER

That’s fine.

EMPLOYEE

Can I get a name for the order?

CUSTOMER

Atheist.

EMPLOYEE

But ….

CUSTOMER

Don’t start with me!

EMPLOYEE

Coming right up.

45 seconds later

EMPLOYEE

Order for At. At.

CUSTOMER

You funny, you know that!

EMPLOYEE

[Smiles]

CUSTOMER

Where’s my milkshake?

EMPLOYEE

They’re making it now. Did you want whip cream and a cherry?

CUSTOMER

Additional charge?

EMPLOYEE

No, sir.

CUSTOMER

Yeah.

EMPLOYEE

Here’s your milkshake, At.

CUSTOMER

What kind of milkshake is this?

EMPLOYEE

Hmm … it looks like … chocolate.

CUSTOMER

No, I asked for the cookies and cream one.

EMPLOYEE

Oh, okay, no worries, we’ll fix you another one. Would you like this one anyway? Because we’re gonna throw it away.

CUSTOMER

[Smiles]

FADE TO BLACK

The Vending Machine Refund Hack

Based on true story

FADE IN

INT. COMPANY NAME – AFTERNOON

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 14, 2014

EMPLOYEE

*thinks to self* Damn, 65 cents for a small bag of chips? Am I paying more because they’re baked? Forget it, I’m hungry. [inserts dollar in vending machine] Where’s my change?

Some guy walks into break room. 

EMPLOYEE (CONT’D)

Pardon me.

SOME GUY

Hey.

EMPLOYEE

Where do you report lost money in the vending machine?

SOME GUY

To security, and they’ll give you your money right back.

EMPLOYEE

Okay, thanks.

Employee walks to security station. 

EMPLOYEE

Hey, I lost some money in the machine. What do I do?

SECURITY

[grabs small piece of paper] You fill out this form with your name, how much you lost, what type of item it was.

EMPLOYEE

What about where it say vending machine serial number?

SECURITY

Don’t worry about that.

Employee fills out form. 

EMPLOYEE

Okay, I’m done. What do I do with it?

SECURITY

Leave it here at the desk. We’ll give it to the vending machine man.

EMPLOYEE

Will I get my money back today?

SECURITY

The vending machine man won’t be back until Monday.

EMPLOYEE

[rubs ear]

INT. COMPANY NAME  – MORNING

NOVEMBER 17, 2014

EMPLOYEE

[walks into break room] Hey, I lost money in the vending machine Friday. I filled out a form and left it with security.

VENDING MACHINE MAN

They haven’t given me anything.

EMPLOYEE

They haven’t?

VENDING MACHINE MAN

No.

Employee walks to security station.

EMPLOYEE

Hey, I filled out a form Friday, reporting lost money in the vending machine.

SECURITY

Let’s see. [grabs small piece of paper] Is this yours?

EMPLOYEE

Yeah. *thinks to self* Why they didn’t give it to the vending machine man when he came in this morning?

SECURITY

You take it to HR.

EMPLOYEE

Now you take it to HR?

SECURITY

Yeah, they’ll give you your money back.

Employee walks to HR. 

EMPLOYEE

[knocks on door]

HR

Yes, how may I help you?

EMPLOYEE

I lost some money in the vending machine. I filled out this form at security. They told me HR gives us our money back.

HR

That’s not *insert Company name* vending machine. The vending machine company handles that. They give us a certain amount of money a week to reimburse people who lost their money. I don’t have any today.

INT. COMPANY NAME  – MORNING

NOVEMBER 18, 2014

Employee walks to HR office and knock on door.

EMPLOYEE

Hey …

HR

I don’t have any money today.

EMPLOYEE

[sigh]

INT. COMPANY NAME – MORNING

NOVEMBER 19, 2014

Employee comes to work and overhears an co-worker talking to the vending machine man in passing.

CO-WORKER

I lost three-fifty in that machine yesterday, sir.

VENDING MACHINE MAN

Employee walks to HR office and knocks on door. 

EMPLOYEE

Has the …

HR

No money today.

Employee walks fast back to break room. 

EMPLOYEE

Argh. He’s gone!

INT. COMPANY NAME – AFTERNOON

NOVEMBER 20, 2014

Employee walks to security station. 

EMPLOYEE

Hey, I need to fill out a lost money in the vending machine form.

SECURITY

When did you lose it?

EMPLOYEE

Last Friday.

SECURITY

Why you just now filling out one?

EMPLOYEE

I filled out one Friday and brought it everyday. HR never had money. I forgot and left it home today.

SECURITY

Here you go. [hands over form]

Employee fills out name, date, how much was lost, type of food, etc. The employee walks to HR and as their knuckles were about to knock on the door, they freeze. The employee walks to the break room, looking at all the vending machines. He stops at the machine that sells microwavable food. The camera shows the employee’s POV: It shows the machine accepts 1’s and 5’s and that a cup of noodles is $1.50. The employee looks up to the right and sees a flashback of their co-worker telling the vending machine man they lost $3.50.

EMPLOYEE

*thinks to self* I never told HR or the vending machine man how much I lost. Security didn’t even look at my form. How crazy would I look putting up all this fuss for a week all for 35 cents? I need to be reimbursed for my money and my time for waiting. Let me move this dot over and put a zero here. Just incase they ask, let me have my story straight: I put $5 in here for a cup of noodles.

Employee walks back to HR. 

EMPLOYEE

[knocks on door]

HR

[opens door] I got money today.

EMPLOYEE

[hands form]

HR

$3.50 … hmmm … well … I don’t have any change. They only gave me ones. I guess you’re gonna get four dollars. A 50 cent profit. [laughs]

EMPLOYEE

[laughs] Why, thank you!

HR

You’re welcome. Until next time.

EMPLOYEE

I can’t wait …

Employee closes HR door back up. 

EMPLOYEE (CONT’D)

… until the vending machines start accepting 100’s.

FADE TO BLACK

Wal-Mart Door Greeter Says “F**k You Too!”

Based on true story

FADE IN

EXT. WAL-MART – DAY

CUSTOMER

[approaches Wal-Mart entrance]

DOOR GREETER

Here ya go. [pushes grocery basket to customer]

CUSTOMER

[moves door greeter’s basket out the way; grabs own basket]

DOOR GREETER

Fuck you, too!

CUSTOMER

Nah, fuck you! Don’t push no damn basket at me! Old ass *censored* working at Wal-Mart. Where your ambition at? HUH?!

INT. WAL-MART – DAY

Customer shops for food then goes to Deli section to order some Ranch Chicken and Jalapeno bombers. Cook takes too long to come to front and take order. Customer sees grandma entering. 

CUSTOMER

I’m about to come out. This the last thing I’m about to get.

GRANDMA

It’s okay. I need to get a few things anyway.

CUSTOMER

Where you get your basket?

GRANDMA

Just on the outside.

CUSTOMER

Did you see an old man out there?

GRANDMA

Yeah, it’s two guys out there.

CUSTOMER

Yeah, one of them said “fuck you” to me ’cause I wouldn’t take the basket he pushed at me.

GRANDMA

Watch your mouth!

CUSTOMER

That’s all you heard, grandma?

COOK

Yes sir, what can I do for you?

CUSTOMER

I’ll be right back. I need to go handle something.

COOK

Sure?

CUSTOMER

Yeah, I’ll be right back.

Customer finds supervisor and reports what happened at the entrance. 

SUPERVISOR

What he look like?

CUSTOMER

Older; dark-skin; had on one of those blue vest; a beanie on his head.

SUPERVISOR

Had on a Wal-Mart vest?

CUSTOMER

Um, yeah. *thinks to self* I think I saw blue?

SUPERVISOR

Did you see his name on his vest?

CUSTOMER

No. *thinks to self* Why didn’t I wear my glasses today? Ugh!

SUPERVISOR

Let me go see who you’re talking about. Wait here.

Supervisor walks to entrance and comes back 5 minutes later. 

SUPERVISOR

I didn’t see who you were talking about.

CUSTOMER

He probably moved now. This happened about 15-18 minutes ago. I shopped first. Do y’all got cameras outside where y’all store the baskets at?

SUPERVISOR

Yeah, we can see you from all the way down the street, up the block and around the corner. I’ll be back. Wait here.

20 minutes later the supervisor communicates with a team leader who is standing with the customer.

 TEAM LEADER

She said which entrance you came in at: The home depot side or the food side?

CUSTOMER

 The food.

17 minutes later the supervisor buzzes in again. 

TEAM LEADER

She said what are you wearing.

CUSTOMER

Black jacket. Black jeans. Green polo. I’m light-skin.

Some old man wearing dark clothing and a beanie walks behind the customer service counter. 

CUSTOMER (CONT’D)

Who’s that?

TEAM LEADER

He works in automotive.

CUSTOMER

*thinks to self* Is that him? I can’t tell. Dammit, why didn’t I bring my glasses?! Let me stare at him and see if he stares back then I’ll know. He’s not looking this way! He just went into the back. Shit!

33 minutes later the supervisor communicates through the team leader. 

TEAM LEADER

She said how long ago this happened.

CUSTOMER

About 18 minutes ago. Well, nah, ’cause I been waiting right here for a minute so …

TEAM LEADER

19 minutes.

CUSTOMER

*jaw drops*

11 minutes pass.

CUSTOMER

Hey, I’ma go ahead and pay for my food.

TEAM LEADER

Okay. When you’re done, come back and wait right here.

CUSTOMER

[sadly]

Okayyyyyyy.

20 minutes later a security guard comes out. 

SECURITY

Hi sir. I’m Chris, the head security guard at Wal-Mart. The supervisor sent me out here to get an re-enactment of what happened.

CUSTOMER

Yeah, so,  I came in right here …

SECURITY

Did you pay for these groceries?

CUSTOMER

Yeah, I did. *thinks to self* They wouldn’t have bags on them if I didn’t pay for ‘em, you idiot you!

EXT. WAL-MART – DAY

Customer re-enacts incident for security guard. 

CUSTOMER

And that’s how it all went down.

SECURITY

Yeahhhhh, we don’t have cameras out here. Sorry!

CUSTOMER

Whaaa … but the lady said she can see me down the … up the … around the … umm I’m going home!

Customer pushes grocery basket to truck in an hurry.

CUSTOMER

Sorry about that. They was doing all this investigating, and had me waiting and stuff.

GRANDMA

What happened?

CUSTOMER

My ice cream melted.

FADE TO BLACK