Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Week Four, Day Twenty-Four -"Gravy Boat"

“Gravy Boat”
Written by Joe Janes

2/11/09

24 of 365


Cast:
Gert, 60s

Richard, 60
s
Jeff, 30s

Clive, 40s


(Lights up on Richard and Gert setting up a yard sale. Gert is setting knick-knacks and such out on a folding table. Richard is pulling out a push lawn mower.)
GERT
We should have done this years ago.

RICHARD
You just never know, Gert. You might sell something and then tomorrow you go looking for it.

GERT
You really think you’re going to miss that lawn mower?

RICHARD
Never know. The riding mower breaks down, we don’t have a back up, next thing you know we’re drowning in weeds.

GERT
We’ll take our chances, Richard. Now go bring that table tennis eyesore up from the basement.

RICHARD
Aye, aye, my sweet.

(He exits. Gert starts setting up dishes. Jeff enters.)

JEFF
Still setting up, Gert?

GERT
We might just run out of yard for our yard sale, Jeff. You’re here early.

JEFF
Saw the flyer down at the laundr-o-mat. Love these things. Early bird gets the (picks something up off the table) pink plastic poodle piggy bank.

GERT (confidentially)
I’ll pay you to take that damn thing.

JEFF
Jeannie would kill me. Mind if I poke around while you’re setting up?

GERT
Go right ahead.

JEFF
I always like to be first to these things. Ya’ never know.

GERT
One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.

JEFF
More ways than one. Saw this one guy on Antiques Roadshow last night that bought a blanket for two bucks at a rummage sale. Turns out it was worth $5,000. For a blanket someone else was about to throw out.

GERT
Really?

JEFF
Sure. Happens all the time.

(Richard enters with table tennis thing.)

RICHARD
Our first customer! We made a sale, yet?

JEFF
Sorry, Richard, not yet.

RICHARD
Help me with this, Gert.

GERT (watching Jeff)
Sure thing.

(Jeff picks up a dish.)

JEFF
Don’t see these too much.

RICHARD
What’s that?

JEFF
What do they call these? A gravy boat. Is there a matching gravy ladle?

GERT (looking at Richard who shakes his head no)
I don’t think there ever was one.

JEFF
How much you want for it?

GERT
Gee, I don’t know-

RICHARD
Let me show you how this is done, Gert. (Richard takes the boat from Jeff and studies it while obviously putting on an act). Well, you know, I’d hate to let this one go, Jeff. Been in the family for generations. You could even call it an heirloom. Like the tomato. But if I had to, I suppose I could let you have for two dollars, cash.

JEFF (laughing)
Sold!

GERT (grabbing boat)
Oh, no, you don’t! Can’t you see he’s trying to take advantage of us?

RICHARD
Gert!

GERT
Ask yourself, Richard. Why would a young man like this want a gravy boat? What’s he going to do with it?

RICHARD
Use it to contain his excess gravy?

JEFF
Actually, I was thinking it might be good for keeping loose washers and bolts in.

GERT
Nice try.

RICHARD
Can’t believe you’re making such a fuss over two dollars.

GERT
Tell him, Jeff.

JEFF
Tell him, what?

GERT
About Antiques Roadshow. You found treasure in our trash.

JEFF
I found a gravy boat in your trash.

GERT
He’s trying to make a fortune off us.

RICHARD
How is he going to make a fortune off a two-buck gravy boat?

GERT
He buys it here for a few measly dollars, then he gets it appraised on TV and finds out its worth thousands of dollars.

JEFF
That’s ridiculous, Gert. If I were going to try to rip you off, why would I even bother telling you about Antiques Roadshow?

GERT
I don’t know, maybe you’re not very good at this.

RICHARD (sighs)
Gert… Assuming Jeff is even interested in still buying it, what do you think is a fair price for this gravyless gravy boat, Gert? Sorry about this, Jeff. Ever since we scaled back on her prescription meds, she’s been kind of surly.

GERT
I won’t part with this gravy boat for anything less than five hundred dollars.

JEFF
What?

RICHARD
You have flipped your lid, Gert.

JEFF
Five hundred dollars. For a gravy boat at a two-bit yard sale? I wouldn’t give you five hundred dollars for this whole pile of thrift store crap you’ve dumped on your overgrown lawn.

RICHARD
Hey, now.

JEFF
If this is how you are going to treat your customers, good luck selling a speck of the rest of your “treasures.” (He exits. Richard looks at Gert disappointed. She looks like she may have really screwed up. Jeff rushes back in.) I’ll give you two hundred cash.

GERT
Sold!

(He hands her the cash and she hands him the boat. He leaves.)

RICHARD
You’re in charge of sales, then. I’ll keep my mouth shut. Table tennis?

(They play. Fade to Antiques Roadshow)

CLIVE
Well, it looks to me that what we have here is a Lichtenstein-Graf antique gravy boat, which many people, even today, use to serve delicious gravy at the dinner table. Usually for more formal occasions, such as Thanksgiving. This particular piece has been around for generations. You could even call it an heirloom. Handcrafted. It’s nearly priceless.

JEFF
Really?

CLIVE
Nearly, but without the matching ladle, I can only place its value at two dollars.

JEFF
I’ll take three.

(Clive smacks three bucks down on the table.)

CLIVE
Deal. (Clive grabs the gravy boat and takes a matching ladle out of his suit coat.)

CLIVE (continuing)
You’re home, baby. You’re home!

(Jeff smacks himself in the head. blackout)



ZED WINS THIS WEEK

So, the Moustache-A-Thon continues. Last night, 826 hosted a preliminary meet-up and good ol' Zed won second place in the organic category. Congrats, Zed! And, yes, the prize was a bag of homemade caramel popcorn. Yum! Next week, is the final night of the competition. You can get your sponsorship dollars in by clicking HERE!

10 comments:

idjar said...

Laughed out loud at this one.

GarinT said...

The run out made my heart warm.

But Richard explaining Gert off her meds stuck out to me, do we need a chemical excuse to act like irrational paranoid assholes these days?

Thumbs up.

Joe Janes said...

I hear ya Garin. The original line was something like "since we scaled back on the cable package." I like this one better and it is kind of timely with people doing exactly that to save money. But I don't think I've hit on the best line for that slot.

Anonymous said...

I like it alot, Joe. But, I have to agree with Garin above. Why is it always the woman who is the crazy one on the meds? Don't get me wrong, it works great in this scene. I just see alot of this kind of thing. Gets old...

MJ

Joe Janes said...

Yah, that wasn't my intention at all and I can see why you thought that. I don't think Gert is crazy. I think Richard is just trying to cover for her behavior. I do like the idea that the yard sale may be out of their need to cover some health costs.

Joe Janes said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joe Janes said...

FYI - All the deleted comments are mine. For some reason, it repeated my last statement aboout gfive times. Ugh!

GarinT said...

The cost aspect of the meds works well. Maybe you just need a little extra evidence of their money issues? Timely as that topic is, it didn't dawn on me.

A teacher I had taught me the importance of setting the scene so the audience could enjoy the characters. Wink.

Sure is a lot focus on this one sentence of your script. All the other sentences are prolly feeling left out.

Paul said...

ANY mention of "off-the-meds?" as justification for crazy behavior grates me cheese. Too easy an out.

That said, great sketch. One of my favorites so far.

CAPTCHA was "pratful".

Mary Cait said...

The health costs thing could come at the beginning when Richard is unsure about the sale. Maybe something about not wanting to buy generic meds.

Richard's explanation for Gert's surliness could just be that everyone's a little tense nowadays... you know, with the economy and all. Or PMS. Definitely whenever a woman is acting crazy, it's PMS.