Sarah Jay (floralxknights) wrote in wprus,
Sarah Jay

Name: Sarah.
Prompt #: 21
Date: November 0, 2006
Re-state the prompt: A drunk man sits next to you in a bar, thinks you’re his buddy and starts confessing “the truth.” Write about what “the truth” is.

I did something I've never done before with this one. I wrote a script for this scene. It's kind of cliche, but it's only for parctice, right?

A young man in his early twenties is sitting at a bar, drinking alone. He gets the waitress’s attention and orders another drink, downing it and grimacing after she slides the glass over to him. His hair is short and neat, his eyes hidden behind thin wire frames. His tie is loosened--- the general look of a man glad to be out of work.
            A drunken man stumbles from the bathroom, winking at young girls in tight clothes. They leave immediately when they see him stumbling over to their table. He waves them away like they don’t matter. He is balding and red faced. His clothes have various stains on them and a round belly bulges over the waistline of his jeans--- the general look of a man gone downhill.
The drunken man looks around the bar with glazed eyes, then spots the young man (whose name is Dennis). He smiles and saunters over, giving the man a hard slap on the back. They don’t know each other, but the drunken man is confusing the young business man with one of his old buddies, so he acts as if they’ve known each other all their lives. The young man is polite in the beginning, but then gets frustrated when the man won’t leave him alone. The drunk is oblivious to this, however, and continues to ramble.
Drunk: Well, I’ll be damned! Look at who we have here! [He laughs jovially, his round belly jiggling as he slaps the young man’s back .His speech is somewhat slurred throughout the scene.]
Dennis: [He’s a little winded from the unexpected slap on the back. He looks around at the man, realizes he has no idea who he is, then starts to stand.] Uhm. Excuse me, sir. I think you have the wrong---
Drunk: [still laughing] How ‘bout I order us another round of drinks? Eh? Little Johnny? For old times sake! [Dennis goes to protest, but the drunk has already called the waitress over] Another round of drinks, on me! Put it on my tab, will ‘ya Millie? [He winks at the young waitress and she rushes off, filling up small glasses of alcohol.]
Dennis: I really appreciate this---I really do but---
Drunk: Take a seat, will ‘ya, John? It won’t take long, just one round of drinks! Sit, sit! [Dennis looks for a way to escape without conflict, sees none, then reluctantly sits down.]
Dennis: I don’t think I’m who you think I am, Mister.
Drunk: [chucking] Now, now John! What’s with all the classy name callin’? You know damn well I hate being called that! Makes me feel old in the bones!
Dennis: [not sure of how to react, he takes his glasses off and rubs his face. When he speaks, it’s with forced calmness. He talks slowly.] No, listen. My name isn’t John. It’s Dennis! Okay? Do you get it? [He searches the drunks face for some kind of understanding. When he sees none, he shakes his head, turning away from the man.]
Drunk: [he looks slightly confused at this, then realization spreads from his face and he starts to speak, drawing up a bar stool and taking a seat next to Dennis.] There ain’t no shame in changing yer name, John. Ain’t no shame a’tall. I always wanted to change my name to Wilbur. Don’t ask me why. [At this time, the two glasses arrive and he nods in the direction of the waitress] Thank y’ma’am.
Dennis: [He grabs the drink and goes to down it, like the other one, but the drunk grabs his hand. Dennis just wants this all to be over with as soon as possible.] What?
Drunk: No need to be in such a hurry. Just old friends catchin’ up. [Dennis sighs audibly and takes a sarcastic sip before slamming the glass down. The drunk takes no notice to this.] So, how ya’ been, John. Looks like you gotta nice life, eh? Made it out for yourself?
Dennis: [at this point, he is willing to play along. It’s obvious the man won’t leave him alone until he gets this reunion out of his system.] Well, yeah. I went to… I went to, uh, college. Got a job. Had a kid. Bought a foreign wife. [At this the drunk laughs hysterically, leaning over with laughter. The laugh lasts too long for comfort and Dennis looks around nervously at the other people in the bar. When the laughter starts to die down, he continues, taking a sip of his drink every now and then.] You know, the uh… the normal stuff.
Drunk: Yeah, yeah. [Still chuckling a little to himself] You always were funny, John.
Dennis: Dennis. My name is Dennis.
Drunk: Ah. Yes. Dennis. I’ll keep that in mind. [He winks at Dennis, who clenches his fists in obvious frustration. The two of them sit in an uncomfortable silence, sipping at their drinks occasionally and avoiding each other’s gaze. Finally, the drunk sets his sad eyes on Dennis, grinning without humor.] Yeah. You really made it out for yourself.
Dennis: [uncomfortable with the look the drunk is giving him, he looks away, taking a too-large gulp of his drink and sputtering.]
Drunk: Yeah. That’s just like you, isn’t it? [His words are becoming softer and more far-away, still slurred. He doesn’t look directly at Dennis as he speaks anymore.] Always tryin’ to swallow more n’ you can swallow. Yeah. [He takes time to sip his drink. Dennis, sensing a rant about to come, checks his watch.]
Dennis: Listen, I really ought to be headed home. The missus is already going to chase me with a broom---
Drunk: [still far away] Yup. Coulda’ been like that. Could’a been successful. Could’a had a kid and a business suit and a foreign wife. Yup. I could’a. But I was always trying to swallow more n’ I could. [he looks over at Dennis] I wasn’t always this sad old man, John. No. I had a wife n’ a kid. N’ a job, too. You better be careful, John. You better be careful. [He takes a sip, then chuckles to himself] Lemme guess? You’re workin’ and climbin’ that corporate ladder of yours, and you’re writin’ reports and drawin’ plans and goin’ out on fancy business trips. Well, John. That ain’t all there is in life. You remember Suzy, John? Eh? Little Suzy’s gonna get older before you know it. N’ she don’t care if you was workin’ for her all that time, ‘cos all she wants is you. And that company you love so much is gonna go under—and, guess what, Johnny boy? They don’t give a rat’s ass about you. You’re shit. And your foreign wife ain’t gonna know who you are anymore and you’ll always be fightin’, always arguin’ and yellin’ until that’s all you hear. And then, soon, all you’ll love in the world and all that loves you back is this little glass of vodka. Or wine. Or scotch. Or anything. [He sips it calmly, downing the last of it and slamming the empty glass on the counter.] And ain’t that the truth, John? Ain’t it? Ain’t that the God-forsaken truth? And look [he stands up, pushing the bar stool in] the glass is empty. Just like everyone else you once loved. [Dennis stands up next to him and pushes the barstool in as well, somewhat bewildered by the drunk’s speech.]
Dennis: I---
Drunk: Yeah. Ain’t that the truth? [He stumbles away towards the bathroom again, not looking over his shoulder as Dennis stares after him, stunned. The waitress with the red hair comes over and taps him on the shoulder.]
Waitress: [smacking her gum loudly] You gonna’ pay, or what?
Dennis: [turning to her, nodding in the direction of the bathroom] That man said to put it on his tab.
Waitress: [scoffing, blowing her bangs out of her eyes] Him? He doesn’t have a tag. He’s crazy as they come. No. You’re gonna have to pay. In cash. Or else he does.
Dennis: No, no. I have it. [He pulls out his wallet and takes out a couple of bills, handing them to her. She counts it, then extends her hand out, wiggling her fingers.]
Waitress: [rudely] And my tip?
Dennis: [amused by her bluntness, he pulls out a couple more bills. She reaches for it, but he holds it just beyond her grasp.] If you want it, you just have to answer one question.
Waitress: [obviously disgusted] I’m not going to sleep with you, no matter how much is in that tip. The answer is no. [She reaches for the money again, but he pulls it away, laughing.]
Dennis: No, no. Nothing like that. [He gives her the money, smiling.] I want to know the name of that man I just had a drink with.
Waitress: [Pleased with the tip, counting it again] Oh, him? Name’s John. John something-or-other. He comes in here all the time, rambling and talking to himself. [She snaps her gum, turning to him.] Why, he rip you off or something?
Dennis: [shaking his head, smiling a little] No. I--- I think he helped me.
Waitress: Whatever you say, bub. [she saunters away behind the counter and Dennis grabs his things, takes one last look over his shoulder towards the bathroom, then leaves.]

Kind of cliche? Try severely. But I don't mind people reading it.
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