Thursday, April 28, 2011

That Guy

This is the final draft of my screenplay for the creative fiction writing class I'm talking this semester.  It's supposed to be a very short film.  My first attempt at the medium - be kind...


A bright summer morning.  A long, two-story building sits in the background, a large sign on one side reading “Ricos Auto Repair”.  The pavement is heavily cracked and the yellow lines are faintly visible. 

A white sedan with rust spots pulls up, parking near a small booth in the lot with large windows on three of its walls about fifty feet away from the larger building.  The sign on top reads “Ricos Key Shop”

You know all the terrible shit that happens to someone just when things seem to be going right in life?

A man in his thirties steps out of the car, slightly overweight, wearing a blue polo, dark slacks and black leather dress shoes, carrying a small black gym bag.  He walks slowly towards the booth, JINGLING keys in his hand as he approaches the locked door.



A pregnant woman (JEANETTE) is sitting partway up a wooden staircase, her hair disheveled, with hands hanging down between her knees.

                   JACQUES (V.O.)
Everything’s going great with your girl, you’re happy and all of that, then Boom!  Disaster strikes, problems arise.

She watches the man in the blue polo standing near the front door, pulling on his shoes, her expression filled with distaste. 


We can see that the one windowless wall of the booth is covered with key blanks, there are thousands of them, old-looking machines sit beneath the wall of keys.  A glass showcase filled with deadbolt locks and key chains separate the tiny work area from the even tinier customer area.  The man, GREG, locks the door behind him.

I’m talking like Karma or Fate or something like that, but with more of a sinister edge.   


showing Greg preparing to open up for business. 

- From his bag he pulls out his lunch: a sandwich in a plastic baggy and a metal thermos

- He FLIPS the power switches on the breaker box.

- Pulls a thick, raggedy-looking paperback novel from his bag.

- Turns on the register.

- He pulls a large magnum revolver from his bag.

- Turns on the lights, which HUM loudly.

- He places the revolver casually beneath the register on a shelf.

- He unlocks the door again.

Like, if there's a god turning the cogs of the universe, then there’s someone else who exists just to throw a wrench into the machinery at just the right time to fuck our shit up.

Greg stands with hands on the showcase facing the parking lot beyond through the window. 


from up high, exposing his smallness against the vast emptiness of the sparsely populated parking lot.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Green Jeep

This is an experiment in free form writing.  I will give myself roughly half an hour to write freely from my thought flow.  What follows will be the result.

Today while walking to the post office, I passed by a green jeep.

A jeep for sale, 2004, that's what it said in the window.

A Wrangler, two seats and space in the back for something, for things, for packs and tents, for canteens and bicycles.

I'd like to take it somewhere, if I could drive, if I wasn't so terrified of the act.

Whenever I used to get behind the wheel of a care I would feel as if I were moving something too unwieldy, too powerful for myself, like trying to successfully maneuver graceful with a lethal piano strapped to my back, or to my front and back rather.

I see it becoming part of people, an extension of self, the vehicle, as if moving it were as simple as moving their legs to walk.

That's how it is with my bicycle though, is it similar?

I miss riding my bike terribly.

I'd like that green jeep just to take the bike somewhere nice and ride it, somewhere dangerous even.  I'm not afraid of crashing on the bike like I am of crashing the jeep.

I've done it enough times, once fell asleep riding home late at night, just for a moment I think, all of a sudden the world just started tilting, out of nowhere, and everything was tilting and I couldn't do anything to stop it and suddenly there was hard ground, I was sliding, skidding.

It hurt but not too bad, my knees and my elbows were bloodied badly but no one saw, that's all I was worried about was someone seeing.

I still have the scar, on my arm, near my elbow, it's hardly visible, you'd have to be told it was there to notice it, some on my knees too but I hardly think about those because I don't look at them as often.

I miss riding though, ever since that crash the back wheel has been bent out of shape and I've been too lazy, too poor to get it fixed and so I never ride anymore.

Used to ride through the forest preserves, just a few blocks from my house, they had a nice dirt path, went on for miles through the woods, sometimes so far away from the streets that you could almost forget the cars were there always zooming by.

And there was this one part, this one part where the trail disappeared almost completely, just sort of faded into this little secluded meadow, and you would ride through the grasses, through the weeds, through a little path cut by all the bicyclist going through before you, until you got to this log blocking the way and you would have no choice but to pick up your bike and walk over the log until you found the path on the other side.

I used to be able to do thirty, thirty-five miles on that bike.

Used to make it from where I lived all the way north into the deep suburbs, I'd get to that point and then turn around and go all the way back.

The best part was finding those water pumps along the way, where you had to stop because you were so damn thirsty and all your water was gone so you got off and staggered over to the pump and worked it for a good half a minute while the summer heat beat down on you, sweating, and then you felt the water coming, heard it, and then it splashed down from the pipe and you couldn't get your face down there fast enough to drink it.

The water, always full of iron, always tasted like blood.

Reminds me of losing teeth, mouth full of blood, swallowing it because it had no where else to go.

Like the time I had to have four teeth pulled out, yanked on, the dentist was getting tired just pulling on them while I was awake, listening to Kenny G on some crappy headphones while he was working up a sweat trying to pull out that damn tooth.

And I was drugged, oh I was drugged up good but I could still feel the pressure, some of the pain, tears rolling down as that fucking dentist tugged and tugged.

End of time...

Friday, April 8, 2011

Where Am I Going?

Sorry, please excuse the rather self-indulgent post.  I've had quite a few of these lately but I swear I've been actually working on pieces of writing. Just bear with me, next post will be much better, promise.  Just need to get this out of of my system. 

I know I've talked about this before here, I'm sure I have.  The question keeps coming up though.  

"What are you doing after you graduate?"
Photo by Smile
I don't know.  Not really.  I don't want to teach though.  I know that's everyone's first impulse when they hear my major (English) but that's probably the last thing I want to do with myself.  No, what I want to do is write.  Somehow, someway.