pandemo (pandemo) wrote,
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Act. 1, Scene IV - Larry King Live Appearance, PatM (WC: 4787) speeches need line breaks


INT. JEREMIAH'S HOLLYWOOD MANSION - EARLY MORNING

Jeremiah decides he has to take Obie in hand to be sure she's properly dressed for her TV appearance on the LARRY KING LIVE show.

        JEREMIAH
    Let's see the choices.
        OBIE
    That sounds ominous. Choices for what?
Jeremiah eyes Obie critically.

        JEREMIAH
    An intriguing ladies apparel problem in search of a solution.
        OBIE
    I have no clothes sense whatever. You
    are in a profession that judges people
    superficially. Your association with
    me could reflect badly on your per-
    ceived success in your chosen profes-
    sion. I understand that.

    Why don't you go live on Larry King
    alone? Surely I wasn't part of the
    original deal. This really can't be
    like "Show and Tell" time or an "each
    one bring one" style tent revival...
        JEREMIAH
    Your "nervous chatter" is so far above
    the tenor of the vapid remarks most
    starlets utter, you're sure to be en-
    dearing. I predict a smash.
Jeremiah kisses her lightly on the top of her head as he bends down to examine the contents of her suitcase.

        JEREMIAH
    Where's your jewelry box? What? No
    cosmetics?
        OBIE
    You're evidently not very observant.
    Name one time when you've seen me
    decked out in either.
        JEREMIAH
      (beat)
    Right! For Tuesday's Larry King Live
    gig and Wednesday's meeting with the
    industry moguls, we'd better remedy
    that and err on the side of meeting
    minimal industry expectations.
        OBIE
      (satirically)
    Oh, joy! My enthusiasm is unbounded.
    I don't know how to contain my glee at
    the prospect of viewing this body in
    three way mirrors...

    Call up an Amway distributor. I'm not ex-
    perimenting with new brands of cosmet-
    ics with my history of allergies. The
    first time I ever tried using a tube of
    lipstick, way back in seventh grade, I
    broke out in hives in a ring around my
    mouth. I'm sure Larry King's audience
    would find that ever so endearing.
        JEREMIAH
      (laughs appreciatively)
    Wish I'd have been there to see that!
        OBIE
      (with mock horror)
    In the girl's john?
        JEREMIAH
      (laughs again)
    Amway it is!
Jeremiah holds up a blouse from her horrid assortment of "stylish" apparel.

        JEREMIAH
      (gives Obie a killer grin)
    Hopeless, sweetheart.
        Jeremiah drops the blouse in his hand back into her suitcase, still smiling.

        JEREMIAH
      (affectionately)
    Utterly hopeless.
Jeremiah links hands with her and pulls her impetuously out the door.

        JEREMIAH
    Shopping!
Jeremiah sings to the tune A-Hunting We Will Go.

        JEREMIAH
    A-shopping we will go;
    A-shopping we will go;
    Heigh-ho the derry-o,
    A-shopping we will go.
        OBIE
      (completes his song in a much poorer quality voice)
    A shopping we will go;
    A shopping we will go;
    We'll buy a dress to replace this mess;
    Then on TV we'll go!
SHOPPING MONTAGE – DOWNTOWN - CONTINUOUS

-Jeremiah drags Obie into big brand name store

-Jeremiah picks out an evening gown with a low chest and a high thigh slit

-Obie examines all the garment, slit and cleft, wide-eyed

-Obie pantomimes refusing to try it on

-Jeremiah brings up another outlandish outfit with a see-through top

-Obie examines herself in the three way mirror, horrified

-Obie dashes back to the changing room

- Obie rapidly sheds the offending garment

-Jeremiah enters while she's mostly undressed, his arms full of other offerings

-Obie grabs a handy hanger and begins to bang him on the head with it

-Jeremiah ducks back outside, dropping his offerings in a pile on the floor of the changing room

-Jeremiah grins his cocky grin and shakes his head admiringly

-Obie examines another outfit in the three way mirror

-Jeremiah's eyes light up at the low cleavage

-Obie shakes her head negatively

-Obie examines another fantastic outfit that might have been worn successfully by Cher in the three-way mirror

-Obie shakes her head negatively

-Jeremiah and Obie enter another big name brand store

-Jeremiah selects several more outfits

-Obie examines one outfit in the three way mirror

-Obie shakes her head negatively

END MONTAGE

INT. BIG NAME FASHION SHOP - LATER IN THE MORNING

Obie models a simple pink and white floral pattern blouse and a nearly floor length dark green jumper that buttons clear down the front.

For the first time, Obie is not totally negative. Since nearly her whole body is covered after all the see-through, peek-a-boo styles Jeremiah has chosen, she's ready to snatch them up.

        JEREMIAH
    Great! We'll take them both.
Jeremiah looks at Obie's feet.

        JEREMIAH
      (beat)
    Those shoes have got to go.
        OBIE
    My feet will be on camera?
        JEREMIAH
    Studio audiences have eyeballs.
        OBIE
    No sneakers.
        JEREMIAH
    No cowboy boots.
        OBIE
    Low blow.
        JEREMIAH
    Besides, you need the real McCoy, not the locally available designer models whose soles probably aren't even treated to withstand exposure to uric acid.
        OBIE
    Okay, okay. I already apologized for your Gucci loafers disintegrating after a walk through my pastures.

    What an incurable Yuppie!

    What in the world am I doing out here in California?
INT. Zale’s JEWELRY STORE - LATE MORNING

Obie and Jeremiah are picking through yet another jewelry store's wares, he proposing, she refusing.

        OBIE
    What I'd really like is a gold three stone opal, my birth stone, in soft pastels, mounted horizontally.
The JEWELER pushes a pad of grid paper toward Obie.

        JEWELER
    Would Madam care to design it?
Obie sketches a design, elegant in its simplicity, then slides the pad back.

        OBIE
    There. That should do it. DO NOT embellish it more.
        JEREMIAH
    Any chance that you can have it ready for her to wear Tuesday on the Larry King Live show?
        JEWELER
    I'll get right on it, sir. It will have to be prepaid.
        JEREMIAH
    I understand.
        OBIE
    Here's my credit card.
The jeweler registers surprise.

        JEWELER
    Certainly, madam.
Jeremiah follows the jeweler a bit down the counter from Obie.</ul>
        JEREMIAH
      (quietly)
    And if your store’s name should just happen to be displayed on screen?
The jeweler beams.

INT. TONY ITALIAN RESTAURANT - NOONISH

One large plate of spaghetti sits between Obie and Jeremiah on the table. Both eat from opposite sides. Jeremiah deftly twirls his around his fork with a spoon. Obie is less adept.

        OBIE
    Now I've stained my new blouse. My "bench" always catches the shortfall.
        JEREMIAH
    Chop it up in spoon-sized lengths.
        OBIE
    Emily Post would be horrified!
Obie gives a shrug and begins chopping.

        JEREMIAH (CONTINUOUS)
    Who?
        OBIE (CONTINUOUS)
    Before your time.
Obie finishes chopping and smiles disarmingly at Jeremiah.

        OBIE
    Discretion: the better part of valor.
        JEREMIAH
    I'll get your new green top from the trunk and you can change in the ladies room.
Jeremiah starts to rise.

        OBIE
    Spoken like a true gentleman. Thanks, but not now. I'm obviously nervous. I may miss again. My rule is, only ruin one blouse in any one meal.
        JEREMIAH
    Gentleman? I should be so noble! Image protection. If I drag you around town sporting chunks of lunch on your chest, folks will think I picked you up at the closest nursing home and am taking advantage of your naïveté.
        OBIE
    Truth will out, no matter where you found me originally.
INT. LARRY KING LIVE SHOW - GREEN ROOM - PRE-SHOW WARM UP

Nervously, Obie waits with Jeremiah for their appearance to promote her Saga series, which she is to pitch as a group of four, beginning with the Saga of Travels Far Woman.

It all becomes moot, however, if the pair of them can't create some buzz about the project, which will hopefully entice the studio into producing the movie.

A TV screen in the corner is showing a slow pan of the audience. Like many people, when a TV is on in her presence, Obie compulsively watches it.

The monitor shows an audience that is predominantly female, and many are Hispanic.

Jeremiah glances once at the TV, then focuses exclusively on Obie.

        JEREMIAH
    I'm leery of being type cast. I've already been an LA cop, arrested for murder, and an FBI agent. Type casting is detrimental to a career.
Jeremiah stands, approaches a pitcher of water on an end table, and pours himself a glass.

        JEREMIAH (CONTINUOUS)
    Now, playing the role of CU makes me the leading man... I'd get the girl. That is a NEW area for me.
Jeremiah crooks an eye at Obie, silently inquiring if she wants some, too.

Obie nods her head.

        JEREMIAH (CONTINUOUS)
    I've had roles where I was promiscuous, but not the main love interest. I'm sick of being seen as a stud muffin. As I move toward my thirties, I want to cultivate a more sedate image. Playing a family man once in a while would be nice.
Jeremiah pours a second glass of water, taking it to Obie before he drinks.

        JEREMIAH (CONTINUOUS)
    Why can't people perceive me as being faithful? That's what I want in real life, not an endless stream of meaningless one month stands.
Jeremiah drains and refills his water glass.

        OBIE
    Wow! You're nervous, too!
Obie gratefully sips at her water.

        JEREMIAH
    Nervous? How did you decide that?
        OBIE
    You're rattling, saying things you'd never let air under normal circumstances, the same way I do when I have an attack of nerves.
        JEREMIAH
    You have trouble taking my concerns seriously.
Jeremiah returns the empty glass to the table, then sits.

        OBIE
    Not really. I just twig more toward the personal experience rather than the content in a situation where I am uneasy, as well. I know the details will be filed in my memory, and when I am calm, I'll be able to retrieve them and think about them. Then I might have something I can sensibly say about those fears. Right now, I can only register that they are ones I will never share with you on a personal level, as I am not an actress.
        JEREMIAH
    You're good at that.
        OBIE
    At analyzing my guts as I spill them?
        JEREMIAH
    At distracting me. At breaking through my self-centeredness.
        OBIE
    That's just because I'm no actress, nor do I have any desire to be. My profession requires that I tune in to people’s emotional ambiance.

    Don’t make me famous. Don’t make me infamous. Don’t garner public attention for me or at my expense, or even offer it to me at all. I don’t want my life disrupted. I won’t thank you for that or think of you kindly afterward, believe me.
        Jeremiah
    When it comes to dealing with women, I don't poach and I don't plead.
        OBIE
    Does it just come naturally to you, or did you study for years to reach this level of jerkitude?
        Jeremiah
    I don't prevaricate and I don't persuade.
        OBIE
    You sure seem to have a lot of I don't's. When you get your list of I do's ready, try me. I'll shoot them down for you.
        Jeremiah
    If someone's with me, it's because they want to be.
        OBIE
    Now the man fancies himself a poet!

    I don't remember you asking if I wanted to be with you. You just showed up and sort of commandeered my work, taking me along for the ride.
        STAGEHAND # 1
    Time, Mr. Hagrath.
Jeremiah rises quickly, crossing to Obie's chair and helping her up. Her knees CREAK as she rises.

        LARRY KING (V.O.) (CONTINUOUS)
    And now a real treat for the ladies! Our next guest, fresh from his fantastic performance as Duvold in Why White Girls Always Lie is none other than
      (shouts)
    Jeremiah Athon Hagrath!
Larry King's comments fade into the background, but remain intelligible, as Jeremiah and Obie talk.

        JEREMIAH (SIMULTANEOUS)
      (whispers, but it is the top sound on the movie sound track, coming in clearly)
    Take two deep breaths and smile as if you just saw your lover.
Obie's eyes pop wide in surprise. She pauses just as the TV camera and klieg lights hit them. The boom mike swings into place above their heads.

        OBIE
    What lover?
        AUDIENCE
      (titters)
        OBIE
    Oops!
Obie covers her mouth with her hand.

        OBIE
      (to cameraman #1)
    That's quite a sensitive mike you've got there.
Smiling desperately, Jeremiah applies a bit of pressure to her back where his hand is placed. He bows slightly.

        AUDIENCE
      (claps enthusiastically)
        JEREMIAH
    Walk. See the chairs straight ahead? Smile. You look as if you just swallowed a marble.
        OBIE
    What on earth am I doing here?
        JEREMIAH
    Plugging Saga. Creating a buzz. Setting up a meeting with producers.
Larry motions Jeremiah to a seat next to PAM, a drop dead gorgeous starlet supplied by Jeremiah’s studio when he shows signs of intending to sit next to Obie.

        LARRY
    And who have we here, Jeremiah? Someone I am going to be embarrassed that I do not recognize?
        JEREMIAH
    Not that I know of. This is my latest find, the novelist and script writer, O. B. Horsefeathers.
Obie sits straight across from Jeremiah and Pam, the starlet Larry King has been chatting with. Pam immediately turns her attentions to Jeremiah, and leaves no doubt that she is there to win his affection. Jeremiah tries his best to keep her at bay without appearing to.

        LARRY
    An author. Would I have read anything you’ve done?
Somewhat nonplused to find herself addressed instead of Jeremiah, Obie’s eyes widen, but her natural wit rises to the occasion.

Pam leans against Jeremiah's arm, sliding hers underneath his as though he has taken possession of hers.

Obie looks directly at Larry, ignoring the byplay across from her.

        OBIE
    My crystal ball fails me. What type of material do you read?
        AUDIENCE
      (titters encouragingly)
        JEREMIAH
    Oh, don’t laugh at her! You’ll only egg her on!
        AUDIENCE
      (laughs)
        JEREMIAH
    This is her first time…
        LARRY
    To visit California? How do you like it?
        OBIE
    No, I’ve been here before. I dislike it immensely. It’s overpopulated, over polluted, and overrated.
Jeremiah leans forward in an effort to untangle himself from the starlet's clutches.

        JEREMIAH
    And, as you can easily tell, she’s overly opinionated, overly critical, and overly fond of using “overly”.
        AUDIENCE
      (laughs)
        LARRY
    Jere, I know your last movie was billed as a comedy. Are you branching out into stand-up material now?
        OBIE
    How inane. Don’t be ridiculous. He’s obviously seated.
        AUDIENCE
      (laughs)
Jeremiah stands and crosses to Obie’s side, sliding her closer to Larry and taking her seat.

        OBIE
      (whispers for Jeremiah’s ears only)
    Barracuda defense brigade? I’m your coral reef?
Jeremiah, hiding behind Obie’s protection, smiles charmingly at her, placing one hand on her knee possessively.

        JEREMIAH
    My next project is hopefully going to be part of a series of four works Obie has penned. Currently, she’s calling them collectively The Saga of Travels Far Woman. I’ve read parts of all four books, and am quite taken with them, enough to set up interviews for her at my studio. Her characters have a depth and development to them that is unlike the normal Hollywood writing. She doesn’t use the stock stereotypes. Even the minor characters are quite quirky and interesting.
        OBIE
    There’s action, humor, romance, tragedy, conflict and local color, along the way. They aren’t art for art’s sake. Once I set the situation in motion, there was just one way it could go, for me.

    The work I’m trying to complete right now is a script called Propinquity and the Mesmerizer. I’ve got Jeremiah in mind as the male lead, ideally playing opposite Phyllis Diller. He’s being quite coy when he doesn’t tell you that straight up, isn’t he? It might be a stretch for him, but he's got a pretty long reach.
Obie eyes the length of Jeremiah's arms.

        OBIE
    I firmly believe in character development, in both art and life.
        AUDIENCE
      (chuckles)
        LARRY
    Can you give us an example?
        OBIE
    Sure. Have you ever heard him sing? I’m not suggesting he go off and become a rock star, but he can certainly get through a decent sounding number.
Jeremiah’s face reveals SHOCK and HORROR.

        AUDIENCE
      (laughs and claps wildly)
        LARRY
    I suppose you have a sample for us?
        OBIE
    Already prepared? No, but he’s capable of cogent improv. Keeps the mind sharp and the skills honed.
        JEREMIAH
    Let’s save that for the finale, okay? We need to discuss why you’re here.
        OBIE
    Good idea. Why am I here? There's an old saying, "If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen." I'm about as far from the kitchen as it's possible for a woman to get. Most men, given my physical charms, are perfectly content to leave it like that. So, what are you doing?
        JEREMIAH
    Don't sell yourself short. Some men like tall and willowy, look good on the arm; others prefer soft and pillowy, smile full of charm, according to my grandmother. I have to admit, when I'm not on screen or stage, I agree.
Jeremiah nods toward the starlet.

        JEREMIAH
    No offense meant, Pam. You're a good actress.
        OBIE
    I have something he wants. I have something he needs.
Jeremiah’s hand is still on her knee, and he leans closer, as if to embrace her.

        OBIE
      (without missing a beat)
    Talent. A chance at an Oscar caliber role.
        AUDIENCE
      (snorts and guffaws)
        JEREMIAH
    I didn’t plan to do this quite so fast, but, no time like the present.
Jeremiah slides one hand into his suit jacket pocket, removing a jewelry box, deftly flashing the store name for the camera without appearing to do it deliberately. Suddenly Jeremiah drops to one knee and grips Obie’s hand, smoothly slipping the opal birthstone ring on her ring finger.

        JEREMIAH
    Larry, I want you and your audience to be the first to know about our engagement.
Obie’s mouth drops open.

        OBIE
    Boy, he’s not kidding. I didn’t even know!
        JEREMIAH
    Now, darling. We went all over this. You’ve just forgotten.
Jeremiah reaches his hand up behind Obie’s neck, smoothly tugging her toward him. Their lips lock, her trapped in his grip.

        OBIE
      (barely audible whisper)
    Ocho y media!
Obie pantomimes holding up an Olympic Score card, showing it all around.

        OVERHEAD TV SCREENS
    Eight and a half.
Jeremiah bounces to his feet, hands fisted on hips.

        AUDIENCE
      (raucous guffaws)
        JEREMIAH
      (Incredulously)
    You rated our engagement kiss?
Jeremiah widens his eyes and holds a martyred pose.

        JEREMIAH
      (miffed)
    Why only eight and a half? I'm better than that!
Obie’s hand tightly held in his, Jeremiah sits back down beside her, flashing a grin.

        OBIE
    Quit looking at me like that. I can't think. You got an eight and a half out of pure generosity of spirit.
        JEREMIAH
    Generosity? What’s wrong with the way I kiss?
        OBIE
    I can’t believe you want to do this on national television. Glutton for punishment, or what?
        JEREMIAH
    I can take it.
Jeremiah levels his best grin at her, dimples fully displayed.

Obie puts one finger in a dimple, taking the edge off her words.

        OBIE
    Absolutely charming, pero su colocación para nuestro primer beso está horrible, y el beso fue un poco seco.
        HISPANIC AUDIENCE MEMBERS
    (laugh)
        LARRY
    He who laughs first understands Spanish.
        OVERHEAD TV SCREENS
    ...but your location for our first kiss sucks. And, it was a little dry.
        JEREMIAH
    I didn’t realize horrible translated as sucks, did you?
        OBIE
    Maybe that’s putting it in the vernacular. Colloquial language is a bit less precise than that used in, say, diplomatic circles.
Larry and Jeremiah both talk at once.

        LARRY (SIMULTANEOUS)
    I hope she’s not talking dirty.
        JEREMIAH (SIMULTANEOUS)
    If you say so, dear.
        OBIE
    Don’t degenerate into henpecked husband quite so rapidly. I’ll start to feel as if we’ve been married for thirty years, which would surely make me a cradle robber.
Obie reclaims her ring hand from Jeremiah.

        OBIE
    This relationship is heading for problems.
Larry and Jeremiah both talk at once.

        LARRY (SIMULTANEOUS)
    Great! I LOVE kinky secrets.
        JEREMIAH (SIMULTANEOUS)
    Such as? I figured it would be pretty stable with you being well past the age for sowing your wild oats.
        OBIE
    Which brings up the age discrepancy.
        JEREMIAH
    Men die off sooner.
        OBIE
    Don't you feel you're overdoing it a bit? My female ancestors consistently have been making it into their early nineties... Assuming my lifespan will run about the same, you'll be what? Fifty-something by then? My dad died at fifty-five, but Mom’s still going strong at eighty-four...
        JEREMIAH
    Sounds good to me. My mind is made up. It's yours that hasn't accepted the inevitable, yet.
Jeremiah presents another contented grin.

Pam stands and with a sultry motion and crosses to examine the ring.

        OBIE
    It’s my birthstone. I designed it myself.
        PAM
    How unique. How long have you been planning to wed?
        OBIE
    I’m not sure. I’ve known him personally since Thursday. Can’t let the grass grow under your feet at my age, you know.
        LARRY
      (snickering at what he assumes to be a gag)
    That long? I’m surprised. Jeremiah is usually less reticent in his dealings with women.
        JEREMIAH
    It was love at first
        AUDIENCE
      (sighs)
        OBIE (SIMULTANEOUS)
    Fright.
        JEREMIAH (SIMULTANEOUS)
    sight.
        AUDIENCE
      (laughs)
Pam laughs so hard she nearly falls off her chair.

        OBIE
    He really means “first sound.”
Obie winks.

        OBIE
    I have quiet a sexy telephone voice.
        AUDIENCE
      (chuckles)
        JEREMIAH
    After all, she has something I want.
Jeremiah grins beatifically.

Obie gives her body a good look over, raising her eyes meaningfully.

        OBIE
    Quit leering at me, sonny boy!
        AUDIENCE
      (guffaws)
        OBIE
    And, believe me, I will never again mention improvisation to him in front of cameras! I can just tell that he’s got a good ninety-five percent of the studio audience convinced that, despite the great chasm between our ages, he is genuinely excited to be engaged to me. Now, that’s the mark of a good actor – being able to make people believe ludicrous things. No matter what I say or do, their faith is unshakable. Unbelievable!

    Shall I set up a scene from the movie with this lovely potential leading lady, or the song?
        JEREMIAH
    Scene.
        OBIE
      (to Pam)
    Just read off that overhead. You are Despina; he’s the sheriff. You’ve just met, and there is an attraction. You are going to teach in an Indian school on the reservation. This is your final night in civilization – the last air-conditioned place with hot and cold running water and electricity you’re going to see for quite a while.
        PAM
    I’m a do-gooder?
        OBIE
    A virtual Pollyanna.
Jeremiah and the Pam move to a raised area to do their presentation.

Soon, Jeremiah is scowling fiercely.

The lines are interpreted as if Despina is a siren, not a sedate schoolteacher.

It is WRONG in a fundamental way.

Exasperated, JEREMIAH casts an eye at Obie.

When they hit a natural ending spot, Jeremiah quickly returns Pam to the seats, and grabbing Obie, repeats the reading. Obie’s characterization is deft and humorous.

        PAM
    I wish I’d read the script before performing. Watching you do that material was a real eye opener. Why do you say you’re not an actress?
        OBIE
    I should know the material… I wrote it. If I’d known you were going to be here, I could have gotten a copy to you, or at least a place to read it on line. That was really unfair to you.
        LARRY
    Don’t think that very interesting and versatile contrast in presentations lets you off the hook for the song, Jere. She's definitely got my curiosity whetted.
Jeremiah holds up his hands as if to fend off the idea.

        JEREMIAH
      (desperately)
    I’m not doing this alone!
        OBIE
      (to Larry)
    Do you have a house band available?
        LARRY
    As a matter of fact… Following this commercial break, we’ll debut this duo, here, LIVE ON LARRY KING!
As soon as the camera cuts away, Jeremiah and Obie huddle. He is quite animated.

A band appears, carrying chairs, instruments, and music stands.

Obie signals to a STAGEHAND to approach.

        OBIE
      (to stagehand)
    Can you bring Jeremiah’s computer from the green room?
Obie approaches the band leader, a Mexican named TIO TIAJUANA.

        OBIE
    I wrote this song, and since I can’t read music, I have to hum it to you. I used to think the tune was original with me, but an Artist in the Schools I once worked with was an expert on Caribbean music, and he informed me it was really an ancient Andean folk song, having versions common in Chile and Peru. I later recognized the Chilean group, Inti Illimani, doing different words to that very tune.
Obie hums a tune.

Tio Tiajuana picks up on the Spanish pronunciation Obie gives to the group's name, and switches languages.

        TIO TIAJUANA
    Sí, ya la sé. ¿Puede que usemos instrumentos indiginos?
        OBIE
    ¡Qué bueno!
        JEREMIAH
      (incredulously)
    We’re going to sing in Spanish?
The stagehand arrives with Jeremiah’s laptop. Obie quickly locates the song she’s stored on it.

        STAGEHAND # 1
    Do you want the lyrics displayed?
        OBIE
    How long would the set-up take?
        STAGEHAND # 1
    About thirty seconds.
A SECOND STAGEHAND comes with a cable.

        STAGEHAND # 2
    Here’s the hook-up, Tom.
As the commercial ends, the frantic activity stops, leaving Obie and Jeremiah facing huge display screens with the lyrics to Mountain Lover displayed.

        OBIE
    Jeremiah's never heard the tune before… Do you mind playing an instrumental version of it first, for us?
Tio Tiajuana nods, then turns to the musicians.

        TIO TIAJUANA
    And a one and a two…
Tio Tiajuana gives the downbeat and the native flutes twine in tight harmony. The music has a bouncy beat.

        JEREMIAH
    Actually hearing the music is exciting… not that you did a poor job of describing what it was supposed to sound like.
        OBIE
    I warned you that I can’t carry a tune. Do you want to go high or low?
        JEREMIAH
    After last night, I’ll do the high.
Obie steps up to the mike.

        OBIE
      (to audience)
    Several metaphysical centuries ago, fifty members of my family held a reunion in the Rocky Mountains. People came from all over the US, family, friends, boyfriends, future friends, and we carried everything we needed with us in back packs. Ages ranged from four-turning-five on the trip to fifty. Everyone packed his or her fair share of the supplies. The little tyke who had the TP and collapsible foxhole digging tool from the army surplus store was the most popular person on the trail. Since I was young and strong back then, I toted a sixty pound pack, which was fine for the first few miles down on the level, but as the altitude increased, and the days got longer, I was quite pushed by it. It took three days to hike in to the campsite, and three days to hike back out. By the time the two weeks were over, I was acclimated to the altitude. Sea level felt like breathing in syrup.
        AUDIENCE
    (soft laughs)
        OBIE
    But I was left with a tremendous appreciation for the Rockies, and a strong desire to take my horse along next time.
Obie switches the display to a shot of her herd running down a hillside straight at the camera.

        OBIE
    A frequently held conversation with my Dad, who was also huffing and puffing along with his sixty-pound pack, was, “This would sure be enjoyable if we had a horse or two to pack the load in.”

    Dad had a pat response. “This trail is way too steep for horses.”

    “You see that? That’s a ROAD APPLE.”

    ”No, it can’t be. We’re too high for horses.”

    “I’ve scooped enough to recognize them. Those are horse droppings.”

    “Ah, but have you ever seen elk excrement?”
        AUDIENCE
    (titters)
        OBIE
    The third day in, the four year old’s
    birthday, I was vindicated. At ten
    thirty that morning, the park rangers
    left the meadow where we’d parked and
    were even with us, on our final leg of
    the climb over the eleven thousand foot
    pass, by four thirty. They picked up
    the birthday boy and gave him a ride to
    the top on their well-trained mountain
    elk.
        AUDIENCE
      (laughs)
        OBIE
    This song is called Mountain Lover, a deliber-
    ate double entendre.
        JEREMIAH AND OBIE
      (sing)
    We hiked along the steep mountain trail,
    My back weary; legs threatening to fail;
    You strode in front; I stumbled in back;
    Your legs felt super; my muscles felt slack.

    You exclaimed at nature's beauty with glee;
    I saw another identical tree;
    You drew in the crisp air lustily
    As I gasped for breath, sighing disgustedly.

    Your pack gave you freedom to roam;
    Mine weighed me down while I longed for home;
    For you, Mountain Bluebirds preened and sang;
    I saw the flick of departing wings with a jealous pang.

    You were invigorated by the cold mountain lake;
    The icy waters were more than I could take;
    You settled down to spend life content;
    I returned to the city, leaving you the tent.
Obie and Jeremiah separate and quietly return to the interview area.

Last updated 6/20/08 removed interjections; 1/8/08. (Formatted in Page, some wording changes/deletions/additions. (6/28/07 - turned off the auto-formatting feature) (6/4/07 - Tried to format for script, unsuccessfully...)

Word Count: 4787
Reading Level: 5.2
Tags: patm
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