Friday, May 23, 2008

Crazy together, or not your typical Hollywood screenplay

MORNING IN THE FEAR/LOVE HOUSEHOLD, KITCHEN DOWNSTAIRS.
JD IS RUNNING OUT THE DOOR. JULIA AND MONKEY ARE EATING BREAKFAST.

JULIA trows the last piece of her dark rye toast with goat cheese into her mouth, then gets up from the table to put her plate into the sink. The camera follows her gaze to the wall clock-- she is noting the time she finished eating so she can do her glucose reading two hours later.

JULIA: So, Monkey, I am heading upstairs to brush my teeth and get ready. You know what you need to do, right?

MONKEY: I am going to finish breakfast and go brush my teeth too, so we can leave. Are we late yet?

JULIA glances at the clock again.

JULIA: No, we are actually doing ok. We might actually get there before the time you and daddy usually do.

MONKEY downs another spoon of oatmeal and smiles.
The camera follows JULIA upstairs as the instrumental of DUST IN THE WIND begins to play. It continues to play, barely audibly, all through the next scene.

UPSTAIRS BATHROOM.
While the camera pans around the bathroom, sounds of JULIA struggling not to throw up as she brushes her teeth are heard. As the camera finishes the sweep, JULIA stands up in the mirror, a bit pale, but looking relieved. A brief moment later a puzzled look comes across her face, and her hand goes to her stomach. With the look of a still ongoing internal calculation she turns towards the shower, takes a step, and reaches to turn the water on. She then withdraws her hand, and walks to her bed. She plops heavily onto the bed and reaches into the drawer of the night table for her doppler.

JULIA lies down, turns the machine on, and the crackling sound of interference comes out. JULIA applies gel, and sticks the probe on top of her belly.

The first sound is the THUM-THUM-THUM of her own heartbeat. JULIA moves the probe, and soon that sound is replaced by the THUD-DUM-THUD-DUM-THUD-DUM of the baby's heartbeat. She listens for a few seconds, then picks up the monitor part of the machine, to watch the numbers dance on the screen.

JULIA lifts the probe, turns off the doppler and reaches for the tissues to clean up.

MONKEY appears on the threshold of her bathroom, visible through the bedroom doorway. She is holding her toothbrush in her hand. The music stops.

MONKEY (cheerfully): So how is our little brother? He didn't die yet, did he?

FADE TO BLACK as THE WALL begins to play. TITLES ROLL.

23 comments:

slouching mom said...

it may not be typical, but it is quite a screenplay nonetheless.

luna said...

quite a little girl you have there.

Beruriah said...

Ohhh, Monkey.

Tash said...

See, in my screenplay, I'd cheerfully get up from the breakfast table and say "time to see if the baby's still alive! Who's with me?"

Antigone said...

I forget how honest children are.

Karen said...

oh, you are all doing so very well really. though she does break my heart.

Beth said...

Ohhh, that's ... when I was five some friends came over to play and the older brother seemed quite puzzled to see me.

"I thought you died," he said.

I rolled my eyes: "No, stoo-pid. That was my brother."

*sigh*

Lisa b said...

I know it is bad but you and tash are cracking me up.

I'm trying not to be so bleak in my outlook so I started seeing a therapist who made some comment last week about horrible things and I said it was like a horror movie staring me.

I am glad this scene had a happy ending. What you write about Monkey reminds me of my daughter who handles it much the same as they don't know any differently.

c. said...

It seems as though it would not be considered typical to anybody but us here in deadbabyland.

Monkey is so endearingly honest...

christina(apronstrings) said...

oh monkey. dear child. but you know you were thinking the same thing.
it will be a good thing when seh holds him and see that not every baby dies.
though, of course it sucks that she has to know that any of them do.
fvck.

Lori said...

Well, I USED to love the song Dust in the Wind.

No laugh track, I noticed.

My Reality said...

I hate it that Monkey has lost her innocence so young.

Rachel said...

Visiting from Mel:

I get it, but I am sorry Monkey does too. Hang in there!

Catherine said...

Been there, done that, now proudly wear the t-shirt. :o)

Bon said...

i don't know what to say about the reality, because in a way i can't imagine any other...but if you made this movie, i would watch it.

Ya Chun said...

that monkey gets me every time.

Julia said...

Thank you, everyone. I wanted to tell the story, but telling it straight seemed a bit melodramatic. I thought it would work better this way. I hope it did.

Tash, you crack me right up. There is nothing wrong with that, is there?

Holy crap, Beth. That must've been fun.

Sorry, Lori. Didn't mean to mess with your iPod playlist. :) Hm, laughtrack...

Hi Rachel, nice to "meet" you. Thanks for coming by.

Catherine, are those mass produced? Or do they hand them out in the hospital, like the baby onesies? This whole trip would be a lot easier if I knew that t-shirt was guaranteed on the other end. But of course, that's the part that messes with you-- no guarantees. Jumping blind.

Bon, thanks. I am not sure there is funding there for the niche market of deadbaby parents with dark sense of humor... Too bad, really.

Magpie said...

No. She really said that?

Rosepetal said...

ouch, Monkey is so much wiser than she should be. (((hugs)))

BlackenedBoy said...

Good luck with your pregnancy. I hope that your baby is healthy and happy. Take it easy.

thrice said...

Okay that worked. My heart sunk.

janis said...

Brutally honest they are. I wish I can be like that. Just grab life by the horns and ride it...

Laura said...

NaComLeavMo

The same screen play happens every day in this house.