Tag Archives: slice of life

Slice of Life: My Dinner with MJ

FADE IN on a MOTHER, mid 40’s and disheveled, and a 3-year-old GIRL sitting at a dining room table. Before them are plates of tortellini and carrot sticks. The GIRL listens while the MOTHER talks.

MOTHER

Your Daddy loves you so much.

The girl nods.

MOTHER

He loves you SO much. He’d give you anything he had. If he had a glass of

water, and you wanted it. He’d give it to you.

GIRL

Oh.

MOTHER

If he had a glass of milk and you wanted it, he would give you that, too.

The girl nods. Her expression is far away. Ruminative.

MOTHER

If Daddy was soooo thirsty, and someone gave him a glass of water,

and he was about to drink it, and you asked him for it? He would

give it to you in a heartbeat. That’s how much he loves you.

The GIRL stares absently.

MOTHER

Myra-Jean? What do you think?

Suddenly the GIRL’s expression brightens. Turning to her mother excitedly, she seems to come to.

GIRL

Mommy?

MOTHER

Yes?

GIRL

I’m drying my butt with a carrot!

On the MOTHER’S wide-eyed expression, we FADE TO BLACK.

IMG_9393

Slice of Life — Artless Chatter

INT utility room: piles of laundry, toys, a dog leash, shoes, refrigerator magnets, play money, and other miscellany are scattered everywhere. A three-year old GIRL plays happily amongst the chaos. Suddenly her eye is caught by a small garbage can next to the dryer. In it, amongst the grey strips of lint, is a bright red piece of paper with stickers on it.

GIRL

Hey!

She runs to the trash can, extricates the piece of paper, and leaves the room with it.

CUT TO:

INT dining room. A disheveled WOMAN, early 40’s, sits at the table in her robe, staring at her computer. She looks up when the GIRL enters. A look of dismay shoots across her face at the sight of the red paper.

WOMAN (low)

Uh-oh.

GIRL

Mama, look!

WOMAN

Hi, sweetie!

GIRL (holds up paper)

This was in the trash!

WOMAN

Really? Wow. How could that have happened?

GIRL

You put it there.

The WOMAN leans back slightly, opens her mouth to speak, then slumps.

WOMAN

I know.

GIRL

You’re not supposed to do that!

WOMAN

Honey. I’m sorry. There’s just–so much. And that one is

sort of–I mean–did you really want to keep it?

A MAN, also early 40’s, enters. He, too, is in a robe. He pours himself some coffee.

MAN

What’s up?

GIRL

Mama threw my artwork away.

MAN

Which one?

The girl holds up the sticker-covered paper. The man regards it, then turns to get the milk.

MAN

It’s not one of your best.

WOMAN

Honey!

MAN

What?

GIRL

I want it!

WOMAN

It’s fine. Keep it. I shouldn’t have put it in the trash. I love it!

Satisfied, the girl takes her drawing and goes. The woman turns and glares at the man. He raises his eyebrows innocently.

MAN

I’m sorry. She’s done better.

WOMAN

This isn’t art school.

MAN

You’re the one who threw it out.

She widens her eyes at him. He shrugs, smiles, and kisses her on the forehead.

MAN

Good morning, darling.

She makes a face, then laughs ruefully. Crossing to the fridge she pulls out some eggs, and we

FADE TO BLACK.

IMG_8531

Slice of Life — Baby Zagat

FADE IN on a MOTHER and a LITTLE GIRL. They sit in a rocking chair reading a book. It’s early morning. Both wear sleep garb. The mother is red-eyed and unkempt; the daughter, perky.

MOTHER (reads)

“But you held my hand tight when we walked in the store.

I’ll love you forever, my dinosaur.”

She starts to turn the page. The little girl stops her and points to the picture.

GIRL

What is that man doing?

MOTHER

Grocery shopping. With his kid. Who’s a dinosaur.

GIRL

Why?

MOTHER

Why is the kid a dinosaur? I don’t know.

I don’t really get  the conceit in these  —

GIRL

No, why is the man grocery shopping?

MOTHER

Oh. I don’t know. He needs food for the house, I guess.

GIRL

But Daddy doesn’t grocery shop.

MOTHER

Yes he does.

GIRL

He does not.

MOTHER

He does, honey. I just do it more.

GIRL

Why?

MOTHER

Well, because Daddy’s at work a lot. I’m home. So I help out by doing the shopping.

But lots of men grocery shop. All the time. Tons.

GIRL

But not Daddy.

MOTHER

Not usually.

GIRL

Oh.

MOTHER

Also? Mommy’s really good at grocery shopping. Better than Daddy. Shall we turn the page?

There’s a pause.

GIRL

But you’re not really good at cooking.

The mother’s eyes widen. She laughs.

MOTHER

Wow. You don’t mince words.

GIRL

Can you turn the page?

MOTHER

You’re not wrong. Daddy’s the better cook. I do try, though.

GIRL

Turn the page, please.

MOTHER

Do you know that I try?

GIRL

Mama!

MOTHER

Sorry! Jeez.

She turns the page, and continues:

MOTHER

“Dinner disaster! You made such a mess! Would you stay up past bedtime? The answer was YES!”

We FADE TO BLACK.

Slice of Life: Sponge Barb

FADE IN on a HUSBAND and WIFE, both mid-40’s and slightly disheveled. They are in a large, messy kitchen/dining room area. The floor is littered with toys.

He irons a shirt. She is washing dishes.

WIFE

Oh, I’ve got the sponge thing in, by the way.

HUSBAND

The — sorry?

WIFE

You know. The sea sponge?

HUSBAND (looking alarmed)

Oh. Right. OK, then.

He bends in to his ironing.

WIFE

Don’t you want to know how it is?

HUSBAND

(looks up reluctantly)

Um. How is it?

WIFE

Burns a little, frankly.

HUSBAND

I had a feeling this would go well.

WIFE

But only when I walk.

HUSBAND

That’s something.

WIFE

Hopefully I checked it well enough…

HUSBAND

For —

WIFE

Shell fragments. Apparently that’s a hazard.

HUSBAND

Wow.

WIFE

Coral, too. But it’s supposed to be quite rare.

HUSBAND

Remind me why you’re using these?

WIFE

Because. Regular tampons and pads contain terrible things. Bleach, plastic, hormone disruptors…

HUSBAND

And you need hormones why?

The wife shoots him a disbelieving look. He gazes back at her innocently. There is a beat.

WIFE

I’m going to pray you were kidding. Anyway, these’ll be great. I just have to get used to them.

HUSBAND

Of course.

WIFE

I’ll be one with the earth.

HUSBAND

Yup.

WIFE

Oh, and guess what you use to sterilize them?

HUSBAND

Whoa. To — ?

WIFE

Apple cider vinegar! Isn’t that cool? Or baking soda. Or colloidal silver.

HUSBAND

What is that?

WIFE

(shrugs, reads from instructions)

 “There is no pathogenic organism known that is not killed by colloidal silver in 6 minutes or less.”

HUSBAND

Wow. Would that include me?

WIFE

You’re hilarious.  I need to go deal. I think it’s falling out. Ow. Ouch.

HUSBAND

Soldier on.

The wife leaves, walking strangely. Then she sticks her head back in.

WIFE

You should be proud of me.

HUSBAND

Proud is not the word.

She shoots him a look and goes. Shaking his head, the husband returns to his ironing. We FADE TO BLACK.