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Clerks Script
(Edit)

                                         "Clerks"

                                            by

                                       Kevin Smith

  
               INT: BEDROOM. EARLY-MORNING HOURS

               A DOG sleeps on a neatly made bed.

               A CLOCK reads twenty to six.

               A SHELF OF BOOKS holds such classics as Dante's Inferno, 
               Beyond Good and Evil, The Catcher in the Rye, and The Dark 
               Knight Returns. A FRAMED DIPLOMA, dusty and unkempt, hangs 
               askew on the wall. A snapshot of a girl is stuck in the 
               corner, and a bra weighs one end down. A PHONE sits quietly 
               atop a bundle of laundry. It suddenly explodes with a 
               resounding ring-once, twice, three times. A CLOSET DOOR swings 
               open, and a half-clad figure falls out. THE PHONE rings yet 
               again, and a hand falls upon the receiver, yanking it off 
               the trash can, O.C. THE RUMPLED FIGURE lays with his back to 
               the camera, phone in hand.

                                     FIGURE
                              (groggily)
                         Hello... What?... No, I don't work 
                         today... I'm playing hockey at two.

               THE DOG yawns and shakes its head.

                                     FIGURE (O.S.)
                         Why don't you call Randal?... Because 
                         I'm fucking tired... I just closed 
                         last night...
                              (deep sigh)
                         Jesus... What time are you going to 
                         come in?... Twelve... Be there be 
                         twelve?... Swear...

               A PICTURE OF A GIRL leans against a trophy. The picture is 
               decorated with a Play-Doh beard and mustache.

                                     FIGURE (O.S.)
                         Swear you'll be in by twelve and 
                         I'll do it... Twelve... Twelve or I 
                         walk.

               THE PHONE RECEIVER slams into the cradle. THE RUMPLED FIGURE 
               slowly sits up and remains motionless. He musses his hair 
               and stands.

               THE DOG stands and wags its tail. A hand pats its head. The 
               Rumpled Figure lays down on the bed. We now see his face. It 
               is the face of DANTE and this is Dante's room; this is Dante's 
               life. DANTE grabs the dog and wrestles it.

                                     DANTE
                         Next time, I get the bed.

               He releases the dog and sits up.

                                     DANTE
                              (exhausted)
                         Shit.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: BATHROOM. MINUTES LATER

               A steaming shower fills the room. The dog licks water from 
               the toilet.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: KITCHEN. MINUTES LATER

               A towel-dressed DANTE opens the fridge and peers inside. He 
               grabs a half-empty gallon of milk and closes the door.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: KITCHEN. SECONDS LATER

               Chocolate milk mix is heaped into a tumbler. One scoop, two 
               scoops, three scoops, four scoops.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: BEDROOM. A MINUTE LATER

               DANTE gulps his breakfast while feeling inside the closet 
               for some clothes. Some chocolate milk spills on the floor.  
               THE DOG laps at the small puddle of chocolate milk.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: HALLWAY. MINUTES LATER

               DANTE'S feet are hastily covered. A hand grabs keys from 
               atop a VCR.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: DRIVEWAY. MINUTES LATER

               A car backs out of the driveway and speeds down the street.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. MORNING

               The car pulls up, with a screech. Feet descend to the ground 
               from the open door. Keys jam into a lock and pop it open.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               DANTE lifts the metal shutter revealing the door. He opens 
               it and grabs two bundles of papers, throwing them inside the 
               store.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. MORNING

               A very dark room barely lit by the daylight. Suddenly, the 
               lights flick on, revealing the glorious interior of the 
               convenience store. THE CAT looks at DANTE as he passes the 
               camera quickly. THE PAPER BUNDLE is snapped open with a knife. 
               Newspapers slam into the appropriate racks. One rack remains 
               empty. A coffee filter is placed in a metal pot.

               Ground coffee follows, and the mix is shoved into place in 
               the coffeemaker. The switch is flicked and the machine comes 
               to life. The empty newspaper rack with the heading ASBURY 
               PARK PRESS seems out of place among all the other stacks of 
               papers. DANTE rubs his chin and stares, puzzled. He rolls 
               his eyes as it occurs to him.

                                     DANTE
                         Shit.

               The register pops open, and a hand extracts a quarter.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. MORNING

               POV: NEWSPAPER MACHINE

               Through murky glass and thin metal grating, we see DANTE 
               approach. He stops and drops a quarter in the slot. He pulls 
               the door down, finally allowing us a clear view as he reaches 
               toward the camera.

               DANTE pulls a stack of newspapers from the Asbury Park Press 
               vending machine. He struggles to hold them all in one hand 
               as he lets the door slam shut. He turns to walk away, but 
               the sound of the quarter dropping into the change slot stops 
               him. He takes a step back to grab the coin.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. MORNING

               The papers drop into the once-empty rack with a resounding 
               flop. The quarter drops back into the register drawer.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. MORNING

               DANTE tries to jam the key into the window shutter lock. He 
               looks down at it.

                                     DANTE
                         Shit!

               The lock is gummed up with gum or something hard and obtrusive 
               like gum, preventing the key from being inserted.  DANTE 
               looks around and kicks the shutter angrily. The car trunk 
               pops open and a hand reaches inside, pulling out a folded 
               white sheet.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. MORNING

               A can of shoe polish is grabbed from the shelf. DANTE dips 
               his fingers into the shoe polish and writes large letters on 
               the unfurled sheet, leaning on the cooler.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. MORNING

               DANTE stands on a garbage can and tucks a corner of the sheet 
               under the awning. He jumps down. The banner reads I ASSURE 
               YOU, WE'RE OPEN. The door sign shifts from CLOSED to OPEN.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. MORNING

               The clock reads 6:20. DANTE leans behind the counter, the 
               morning routine completed. He stares ahead, catatonic, then 
               drops his head in his hands. The day has begun.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               The store, with its makeshift banner looming in the dim 
               morning hour, just after dawn. A car drives by.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               DANTE waits on a customer (ACTIVIST) buying coffee.

                                     DANTE
                         Thanks. Have a good one.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         Do you mind if I drink this here?

                                     DANTE
                         Sure. Go ahead.

               The ACTIVIST leans on a briefcase and drinks his coffee.

               Another CUSTOMER leans in the door.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Are you open?

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Pack of cigarettes.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         Are you sure?

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Am I sure?

                                     ACTIVIST
                         Are you sure?

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Am I sure about what?

                                     ACTIVIST
                         Do you really want to buy those 
                         cigarettes?

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Are you serious?

                                     ACTIVIST
                         How long have you been smoking?

                                     CUSTOMER
                              (to DANTE)
                         What is this, a poll?

                                     DANTE
                         Beats me.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         How long have you been a smoker?

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Since I was thirteen.

               The ACTIVIST lifts his briefcase onto the counter. He opens 
               it and extracts a sickly-looking lung model.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         I'd say you're about nineteen, twenty, 
                         am I right?

                                     CUSTOMER
                         What the hell is that?

                                     ACTIVIST
                         That's your lung. By this time, your 
                         lung looks like this.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         You're shittin' me.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         You think I'm shitting you...

               The ACTIVIST hands him something from the briefcase.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         What's this?

                                     ACTIVIST
                         It's a trach ring. It's what they 
                         install in your throat when throat 
                         cancer takes your voice box. This 
                         one came out of a sixty-year-old 
                         man.

                                     CUSTOMER
                              (drops ring)
                         Unnhh!

                                     ACTIVIST
                              (picks up the ring)
                         He smoked until the day he died.  
                         Used to put the cigarette in this 
                         thing and smoke it that way.

                                     DANTE
                         Excuse me, but...

                                     ACTIVIST
                         This is where you're heading. A cruddy 
                         lung, smoking through a hole in your 
                         throat. Do you really want that?

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Well, if it's already too late...

                                     ACTIVIST
                         It's never too late. Give those 
                         cigarettes back now, and buy some 
                         gum instead.
                              (grabs nearby pack, 
                              reads)
                         Here. Chewlies Gum. Try this.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         It's not the same.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         It's cheaper than cigarettes. And it 
                         certainly beats this.

               Hands him a picture.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Jesus!

                                     ACTIVIST
                         It's a picture of a cancer-ridden 
                         lung. Keep it.

                                     CUSTOMER
                              (to DANTE)
                         I'll just take the gum.

                                     DANTE
                         Fifty-five.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         You've made a wise choice. Keep up 
                         the good work.

               The CUSTOMER exits.

                                     DANTE
                         Maybe you should take that coffee 
                         outside.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         No, I think I'll drink it in here, 
                         thanks.

                                     DANTE
                         If you're going to drink it in here, 
                         I'd appreciate it if you'd not bother 
                         the customers.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         Okay. I'm sorry about that.

               Another CUSTOMER comes up to the counter.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Pack of cigarettes.
                              (looks at model)
                         What's that?

                                     ACTIVIST
                         This? How long have you been smoking?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               A blank wall. JAY steps into the frame, followed by SILENT 
               BOB. JAY pulls off his coat and swings it into the arms of 
               SILENT BOB. JAY then throws down with a makeshift slam dance, 
               spinning his arm and fake-hitting SILENT BOB.

                                     JAY
                         WE NEED SOME TITS AND ASS! YEAH!

               SILENT BOB lights a smoke.

                                     JAY
                         I feel good today, Silent Bob. We're 
                         gonna make some money! And then you 
                         know what we're going to do? We're 
                         going to go to that party and get 
                         some pussy! I'm gonna fuck this bitch, 
                         that bitch...
                              (Blue Velvet Hopper)
                         I'LL FUCK ANYTHING THAT MOVES!

               SILENT BOB points to something off-screen.

                                     JAY
                              (to O.C.)
                         What you looking at?! I'll kick your 
                         fucking ass!
                              (to SILENT BOB)
                         Doesn't that motherfucker still owe 
                         me ten bucks?

               SILENT BOB nods.

                                     JAY
                         Tonight, you and me are going off 
                         that fucker's head, and take out his 
                         fucking soul! Remind me if he tries 
                         to buy something from us, to cut it 
                         with leafs and twigs... or fucking 
                         shit in the motherfucker's bag!

               Some girls walk past. JAY smiles at them.

                                     JAY
                         Wa sup sluts?
                              (to SILENT BOB)
                         Damn Silent Bob! You one rude 
                         motherfucker! But you're cute as 
                         hell.
                              (slowly drops to knees)
                         I wanna go down on you, and suckle 
                         you.
                              (makes blow job neck-
                              jerks)
                         And then, I wanna line up three more 
                         guys, and make like a circus seal...

               JAY makes blow job faces down an imaginary line of guys, 
               looking quite like a performing seal. He throws a little 
               humming sound behind each nod. He then hops up quickly.

                                     JAY
                         Ewwww!  You fucking faggot! I fucking 
                         hate guys!
                              (yelling)
                         I LOVE WOMEN!
                              (calmer)
                         Neh.

               A GUY comes up to them.

                                     GUY
                         You selling?

                                     JAY
                              (all business)
                         I got hits, hash, weed, and later on 
                         I'll have 'shrooms. We take cash, or 
                         stolen MasterCard and Visa.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               A SMALL CROWD gathers around the ACTIVIST as he orates. It 
               has become something of a rally.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         You're spending what? Twenty, thirty 
                         dollars a week on cigarettes.

                                     LISTENER 1
                         Forty.

                                     LISTENER 2
                         Fifty-three.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         Fifty-three dollars. Would you pay 
                         someone that much money every week 
                         to kill you? Because that's what 
                         you're doing now, by paying for the 
                         so-called privilege to smoke!

                                     LISTENER 3
                         We all gotta go sometime...

                                     ACTIVIST
                         It's that kind of mentality that 
                         allows this cancer-producing industry 
                         to thrive. Of course we're all going 
                         to die someday, but do we have to 
                         pay for it? Do we have to actually 
                         throw hard-earned dollars on a counter 
                         and say, "Please, please, Mister 
                         Merchant of Death, sir; please sell 
                         me something that will give me bad 
                         breath, stink up my clothes, and fry 
                         my lungs."

                                     LISTENER 1
                         It's not that easy to quit.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         Of course it's not; not when you 
                         have people like this mindless cretin 
                         so happy and willing to sell you 
                         nails for your coffin!

                                     DANTE
                         Hey, now wait a sec...

                                     ACTIVIST
                         Now he's going to launch into his 
                         rap about how he's just doing his 
                         job; following orders.  Friends, let 
                         me tell you about another bunch of 
                         hate mongers that were just following 
                         orders: they were called Nazis, and 
                         they practically wiped a nation of 
                         people from the Earth... just like 
                         cigarettes are doing now! Cigarette 
                         smoking is the new Holocaust, and 
                         those that partake in the practice 
                         of smoking or sell the wares that 
                         promote it are the Nazis of the 
                         nineties! He doesn't care how many 
                         people die from it! He smiles as you 
                         pay for your cancer sticks and says, 
                         "Have a nice day."

                                     DANTE
                         I think you'd better leave now.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         You want me to leave? Why? Because 
                         somebody is telling it like it is?  
                         Somebody's giving these fine people 
                         a wake-up call?!

                                     DANTE
                         You're loitering in here, and causing 
                         a disturbance.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         You're the disturbance, pal! And 
                         here...
                              (slaps a dollar on 
                              the counter)
                         I'm buying some... what's this?... 
                         Chewlie's Gum. There. I'm no longer 
                         loitering. I'm a customer, a customer 
                         engaged in a discussion with other 
                         customers.

                                     LISTENER 2
                              (to DANTE)
                         Yeah, now shut up so he can speak!

                                     ACTIVIST
                         Oh, he's scared now! He sees the 
                         threat we present! He smells the 
                         changes coming, and the loss of sales 
                         when the nonsmokers finally demand 
                         satisfaction. We demand the right to 
                         breathe cleaner air!

                                     LISTENER 3
                         Yeah!

                                     ACTIVIST
                         We'd rather chew our gum than embrace 
                         slow death! Let's abolish this heinous 
                         practice of sucking poison, and if 
                         it means ruffling the feathers of a 
                         convenience store idiot, then so be 
                         it!

                                     DANTE
                         That's it, everybody out.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         We're not moving! We have a right, a 
                         constitutional right, to assemble 
                         and be heard!

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah, but not in here.

                                     ACTIVIST
                         What better place than this? To stamp 
                         it out, you gotta start at the source!

                                     DANTE
                         Like I'm responsible for all the 
                         smokers!

                                     ACTIVIST
                         The ones in this town, yes! You 
                         encourage their growth, their habit.  
                         You're the source in this area, and 
                         we're going to shut you down for 
                         good! For good, cancer-merchant!

               The small crowd begins to chant and jeer in DANTE's face.

                                     CROWD
                         Cancer merchant! Cancer merchant!  
                         Cancer merchant!

               VERONICA enters and surveys the mess. The CROWD throws 
               cigarettes at DANTE, pelting him in the face. Suddenly, a 
               loud blast is heard, and white powder explodes over the 
               throng. Everyone turns to face...

               VERONICA as she stands in one of the freezer cases, holding 
               a fire extinguisher.

                                     VERONICA
                         Who's leading this mob?

               The CROWD looks among themselves. Someone points to O.C.

                                     SOMEONE
                         That guy.

               The ACTIVIST carries his briefcase surreptitiously toward 
               the door.

                                     VERONICA (O.S.)
                         Freeze.

               VERONICA jumps off the freezer case, training the nozzle of 
               the extinguisher on the ACTIVIST.

                                     VERONICA
                         Let's see some credentials.

               He reaches into his briefcase. She pokes the extinguisher 
               nozzle at him, warningly.

                                     VERONICA
                         Slowly...

               He pulls out a business card and hands it to her. She reads 
               it.

                                     VERONICA
                         You're a Chewlie's Gum representative?

               He nods.

                                     VERONICA
                         And you're stirring up all this 
                         antismoking sentiment to... what?... 
                         sell more gum?

               He nods again.

                                     VERONICA
                              (through gritted teeth)
                         Get out of here.

               He quickly flees. She blasts him with more chemical as he 
               exits.

                                     VERONICA
                              (to the crowd)
                         And you people: Don't you have jobs 
                         to go to? Get out of here and go 
                         commute.

               The CROWD sheepishly exits, one by one, offering apologetic 
               glances. DANTE tries to regain his composure.

               VERONICA watches the crowd disperse, disgusted.

                                     VERONICA
                         You oughta be ashamed of yourselves.
                         Easily led automatons. Try thinking 
                         for yourself before you pelt and 
                         innocent man with cigarettes.

               The last of the crowd exits. VERONICA sets the fire 
               extinguisher down next to DANTE. DANTE is sitting on the 
               floor, head in his folded arms.

                                     VERONICA
                         It looked like Tiananmen Square in 
                         here for a second.

               DANTE is silent.

                                     VERONICA
                         "Thank you, Veronica; you saved me 
                         from an extremely ugly mob scene."

               DANTE remains silent.

                                     VERONICA
                              (sits beside him)
                         Okay, champ. What's wrong?

               DANTE lifts his head and shoots her a disgusted look.

                                     VERONICA
                         All right, stupid question. But don't 
                         you think you're taking this a bit 
                         too hard?

                                     DANTE
                         Too hard?! I don't have enough 
                         indignities in my life-people start 
                         throwing cigarettes at me!

                                     VERONICA
                         At least they weren't lit.

                                     DANTE
                         I hate this fucking place.

                                     VERONICA
                         Then quit. You should be going to 
                         school anyway...

                                     DANTE
                         Please, Veronica. Last thing I need 
                         is a lecture at this point.

                                     VERONICA
                         All I'm saying is that if you're 
                         unhappy you should leave.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm not even supposed to be here 
                         today!

                                     VERONICA
                         I know. I stopped by your house and 
                         your mom said you left at like six 
                         or something.

                                     DANTE
                         The guy got sick and couldn't come 
                         in.

                                     VERONICA
                         Don't you have a hockey game at two?

                                     DANTE
                         Yes! And I'm going to play like shit 
                         because I didn't get a good night's 
                         sleep!

                                     VERONICA
                         Why did you agree to come in then?

                                     DANTE
                         I'm only here until twelve, then I'm 
                         gone. The boss is coming in.

                                     VERONICA
                         Why don't you open the shutters and 
                         get some sunlight in here?

                                     DANTE
                         Somebody jammed the locks with gum.

                                     VERONICA
                         You're kidding.

                                     DANTE
                         Bunch of savages in this town.

                                     VERONICA
                         You look bushed. What time did you 
                         get to bed?

                                     DANTE
                         I don't know-like two-thirty, three.

                                     VERONICA
                         What were you doing up so late?

                                     DANTE
                              (skirting)
                         Hunhh? Nothing.

                                     VERONICA
                              (persistent)
                         What were you doing?

                                     DANTE
                         Nothing! Jesus! I gotta fight with 
                         you now?

                                     VERONICA
                         Who's fighting? Why are you so 
                         defensive?

                                     DANTE
                         Who's defensive?  Just... Would you 
                         just hug me?! All right? Your 
                         boyfriend was accosted by an angry 
                         mob, and he needs to be hugged.

               She stares at him.

                                     DANTE
                         What? What is that?

                                     VERONICA
                         She called you, didn't she?

                                     DANTE
                         Oh, be real! Would you... Would you 
                         please hug me?  I just went through 
                         a very traumatic experience and I 
                         haven't been having the best day so 
                         far. Now come on.

               VERONICA stares at him.

                                     DANTE
                         What? What's with that look?! I wasn't 
                         talking to anyone, especially her! 
                         Look at you, being all sort of... I 
                         don't know... stand-offish.

               VERONICA looks away.

                                     DANTE
                         Fine. You don't trust me, don't hug 
                         me. I see how it is. All right Pissy-
                         pants, you just go on being suspicious 
                         and quiet. I don't even want to hug 
                         you at this point.

               VERONICA looks back at him.

                                     DANTE
                              (pleadingly)
                         Give you a dollar?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               A NOTE on the counter next to a small pile of money reads:

               PLEASE LEAVE MONEY ON THE COUNTER. TAKE CHANGE WHEN 
               APPLICABLE. BE HONEST.

               DANTE and VERONICA are slumped on the floor, behind the 
               counter. VERONICA holds DANTE in her arms, his head on her 
               chest. Change is heard hitting the counter.

                                     DANTE
                              (to O.C. customer)
                         Thanks.

               The door is heard opening and closing - a customer leaving.

                                     VERONICA
                         How much money did you leave up there?

                                     DANTE
                         Like three dollars in mixed change 
                         and a couple of singles. People only 
                         get the paper of coffee this time of 
                         morning.

                                     VERONICA
                         You're trusting.

                                     DANTE
                         Why do you say that?

                                     VERONICA
                         How do you know they're taking the 
                         right amount of change? Or even paying 
                         for what they take?

                                     DANTE
                         Theoretically, people see money on 
                         the counter and nobody around, they 
                         think they're being watched.

                                     VERONICA
                         Honesty through paranoia. Why do you 
                         smell like shoe polish?

                                     DANTE
                         I had to use shoe polish to make 
                         that sign. The smell won't come off.

                                     VERONICA
                         Do you think anyone can see us down 
                         here?

                                     DANTE
                         Why? You wanna have sex or something?

                                     VERONICA
                              (sarcastic)
                         Ooh! Can we?!

                                     DANTE
                         Really?

                                     VERONICA
                         I was kidding.

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah, right. You can't get enough of 
                         me.

                                     VERONICA
                         Typically male point of view.

                                     DANTE
                         How do you figure?

                                     VERONICA
                         You show some bedroom proficiency, 
                         and you think you're gods. What about 
                         what we do for you?

                                     DANTE
                         Women? Women, as lovers, are all 
                         basically the same: they just have 
                         to be there.

                                     VERONICA
                         "Be there?"

                                     DANTE
                         Making a male climax is not all that 
                         challenging: insert somewhere close 
                         and preferably moist; thrust; repeat.

                                     VERONICA
                         How flattering.

                                     DANTE
                         Now, making a woman cum... therein 
                         lies a challenge.

                                     VERONICA
                         Oh, you think so?

                                     DANTE
                         A girl makes a guy cum, it's standard. 
                         A guy makes a girl cum, it's talent.

                                     VERONICA
                         And I actually date you?

                                     DANTE
                         Something wrong?

                                     VERONICA
                         I'm insulted. Believe me, Don Juan, 
                         it takes more than that to get a guy 
                         off. Just "being there"-as you put 
                         it-is not enough.

                                     DANTE
                         I touched a nerve.

                                     VERONICA
                         I'm astonished to hear you trivialize 
                         my role in our sex life.

                                     DANTE
                         It wasn't directed at you. I was 
                         making a broad generalization.

                                     VERONICA
                         You were making a generalization 
                         about "broads!"

                                     DANTE
                         These are my opinions based on my 
                         experiences with the few women who 
                         were good enough to sleep with me.

                                     VERONICA
                         How many?

                                     DANTE
                         How many what?

                                     VERONICA
                         How many girls have you slept with?

                                     DANTE
                         How many different girls? Didn't we 
                         already have this discussion once?

                                     VERONICA
                         We might have; I don't remember.
                         How many?

                                     DANTE
                         Including you?

                                     VERONICA
                         It better be up to and including me.

                                     DANTE
                              (pause to count)
                         Twelve.

                                     VERONICA
                         You've slept with twelve different 
                         girls?

                                     DANTE
                         Including you; yes.

               Pause. She slaps him.

                                     DANTE
                         What the hell was that for?

                                     VERONICA
                         You're a pig.

                                     DANTE
                         Why'd you hit me?

                                     VERONICA
                         Do you know how many different men 
                         I've had sex with?

                                     DANTE
                         Do I get to hit you after you tell 
                         me?

                                     VERONICA
                         Three.

                                     DANTE
                         Three?

                                     VERONICA
                         Three including you.

                                     DANTE
                         You've only had sex with three 
                         different people?

                                     VERONICA
                         I'm not the pig you are.

                                     DANTE
                         Who?

                                     VERONICA
                         You!

                                     DANTE
                         No; who were the three, besides me?

                                     VERONICA
                         John Franson and Rob Stanslyk.

                                     DANTE
                              (with true admiration)
                         Wow. That's great. That's something 
                         to be proud of.

                                     VERONICA
                         I am. And that's why you should feel 
                         like a pig. You men make me sick. 
                         You'll sleep with anything that says 
                         yes.

                                     DANTE
                         Animal, vegetable, or mineral.

                                     VERONICA
                         Vegetable meaning paraplegic.

                                     DANTE
                         They put up the least amount of 
                         struggle.

                                     VERONICA
                         After dropping a bombshell like that, 
                         you owe me. Big.

                                     DANTE
                         All right. Name it.

                                     VERONICA
                         I want you to come with me on Monday.

                                     DANTE
                         Where?

                                     VERONICA
                         To school. There's a seminar about 
                         getting back into a scholastic program 
                         after a lapse in enrollment.

                                     DANTE
                         Can't we ever have a discussion 
                         without that coming up?

                                     VERONICA
                         It's important to me, Dante. You 
                         have so much potential that just 
                         goes to waste in this pit. I wish 
                         you'd go back to school.

                                     DANTE
                         Jesus, would you stop? You make my 
                         head hurt when you talk about this.

               VERONICA stands, letting DANTE'S head hit the floor.

                                     DANTE
                         Shit! Why are we getting up?

                                     VERONICA
                         Unlike you, I have a class in forty-
                         five minutes.

               A handsome young man (WILLAM) is standing at the counter.  
               VERONICA reacts to him.

                                     VERONICA
                              (surprised)
                         Willam!

                                     WILLAM
                         Ronnie! How are you? You work here 
                         now?

                                     VERONICA
                              (locks arms with DANTE)
                         No, I'm just visiting my man.
                              (to DANTE)
                         Dante, this is Willam Black.
                              (to WILLAM)
                         This is Dante Hicks, my boyfriend.

                                     DANTE
                         How are you? Just the soda?

                                     WILLAM
                         And a pack of cigarettes.
                              (to VERONICA; paying)
                         Are you still going to Seton Hall?

                                     VERONICA
                         No, I transferred into Monmouth this 
                         year. I was tired of missing him.
                              (squeezes DANTE'S arm)

                                     WILLAM
                         Do you still talk to Sylvan?

                                     VERONICA
                         I just talked to her on Monday. We 
                         still hang out on weekends.

                                     WILLAM
                              (leaving)
                         That's cool. Well-you two lovebirds 
                         take it easy, all right?

                                     VERONICA
                         I will. Take it easy.

                                     WILLAM
                         Bye.
                              (exits)

                                     VERONICA
                         Bye
                              (to DANTE)
                         That was Snowball.

                                     DANTE
                         Why do you call him that?

                                     VERONICA
                         Sylvan made it up. It's a blow job 
                         thing.

                                     DANTE
                         What do you mean?

                                     VERONICA
                         After he gets a blow job, he likes 
                         to have the cum spit back into his 
                         mouth while kissing. It's called 
                         snowballing.

                                     DANTE
                         He requested this?

                                     VERONICA
                         He gets off on it.

                                     DANTE
                         Sylvan can be talked into anything.

                                     VERONICA
                         Why do you say that?

                                     DANTE
                         Like you said-she snowballed him.

                                     VERONICA
                         Sylvan? No; I snowballed him.

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah, right.

                                     VERONICA
                         I'm serious...

               A moment of silence as DANTE'S chuckles fade to comprehension.

                                     DANTE
                         You sucked that guy's dick?

                                     VERONICA
                         Yeah. How do you think I know he 
                         liked...

                                     DANTE
                              (panicky)
                         But... but you said you only had sex 
                         with three guys! You never mentioned 
                         him!

                                     VERONICA
                         That's because I never had sex with 
                         him!

                                     DANTE
                         You sucked his dick!

                                     VERONICA
                         We went out a few times. We didn't 
                         have sex, but we fooled around.

                                     DANTE
                              (massive panic attack)
                         Oh my God! Why did you tell me you 
                         only slept with three guys?

                                     VERONICA
                         Because I did only sleep with three 
                         guys! That doesn't mean I didn't 
                         just go with people.

                                     DANTE
                         Oh my God-I feel so nauseous...

                                     VERONICA
                         I'm sorry, Dante. I thought you 
                         understood.

                                     DANTE
                         I did understand! I understand that 
                         you slept with three different guys, 
                         and that's all you said.

                                     VERONICA
                         Please calm down.

                                     DANTE
                         How many?

                                     VERONICA
                         Dante...

                                     DANTE
                         How many dicks have you sucked?!

                                     VERONICA
                         Let it go...

                                     DANTE
                         HOW MANY?

                                     VERONICA
                         All right! Shut up a second and I'll 
                         tell you! Jesus! I didn't freak like 
                         this when you told me how many girls 
                         you fucked.

                                     DANTE
                         This is different. This is important.
                         How many?!

               She counts silently, using fingers as marks. DANTE waits on 
               a customer in the interim. VERONICA stops counting.

                                     DANTE
                         Well...?

                                     VERONICA
                              (half-mumbled)
                         Something like thirty-six.

                                     DANTE
                         WHAT? SOMETHING LIKE THIRTY-SIX?

                                     VERONICA
                         Lower your voice!

                                     DANTE
                         What the hell is that anyway, 
                         "something like thirty-six?" Does 
                         that include me?

                                     VERONICA
                         Um. Thirty-seven.

                                     DANTE
                         I'M THIRTY-SEVEN?

                                     VERONICA
                              (walking away)
                         I'm going to class.

                                     DANTE
                         Thirty-seven?!
                              (to CUSTOMER)
                         My girlfriend sucked thirty-seven 
                         dicks!

                                     CUSTOMER
                         In a row?

               DANTE chases VERONICA down and grabs her by the door.

                                     DANTE
                         Hey! Where are you going?!

                                     VERONICA
                         Hey listen, jerk! Until today you 
                         never even knew how many guys I'd 
                         slept with, because you never even 
                         asked. And then you act all nonchalant 
                         about fucking twelve different girls. 
                         Well, I never had sex with twelve 
                         different guys!

                                     DANTE
                         No, but you sucked enough dick!

                                     VERONICA
                         Yeah, I went down on a few guys...

                                     DANTE
                         A few?

                                     VERONICA
                         ...And one of those guys was you!  
                         The last one, I might add, which-if
                         you're too stupid to comprehend- 
                         means that I've been faithful to you 
                         since we met! All the other guys I 
                         went with before I met you, so, if 
                         you want to have a complex about it, 
                         go ahead!  But don't look at me like 
                         I'm the town whore, because you were 
                         plenty busy yourself, before you met 
                         me!

                                     DANTE
                              (a bit more rational)
                         Well... why did you have to suck 
                         their dicks? Why didn't you just 
                         sleep with them, like any decent 
                         person?!

                                     VERONICA
                         Because going down it's a big deal!  
                         I used to like a guy, we'd make out, 
                         and sooner or later I'd go down on 
                         him. But I only had sex with the 
                         guys I loved.

                                     DANTE
                         I feel sick.

                                     VERONICA
                              (holds him)
                         I love you. Don't feel sick.

                                     DANTE
                         Every time I kiss you now I'm going 
                         to taste thirty-six other guys.

               VERONICA violently lets go of him.

                                     VERONICA
                         I'm going to school. Maybe later 
                         you'll be a bit more rational.

                                     DANTE
                              (pause)
                         Thirty-seven. I just can't...

                                     VERONICA
                         Goodbye, Dante.

               She exits in a huff. DANTE stands there in silence for a 
               moment. Then he swings the door open and yells out.

                                     DANTE
                         Try not to suck any more dicks on 
                         your way through the parking lot!

               Two men who were walking in the opposite direction outside 
               double back and head in the direction. VERONICA went.

                                     DANTE
                         HEY! HEY, YOU! GET BACK HERE!

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               A videocassette encased in the customary black box flips 
               repeatedly, held by an impatient grasp. The IMPATIENT CUSTOMER 
               glares at DANTE. Dante studies a copy of Paradise Lost, making 
               a strong attempt at not noticing the glare.

                                     IMPATIENT CUSTOMER
                              (pissed off)
                         I thought that place was supposed to 
                         be opened at eleven o'clock?

               It's twenty after!

                                     DANTE
                         I called his house twice already.

               He should be here soon.

                                     IMPATIENT CUSTOMER
                         It's not like it's a demanding job.  
                         I'd like to get paid to sit on my 
                         ass and watch TV. The other day I 
                         walked in there and that sonofabitch 
                         was sleeping.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm sure he wasn't sleeping.

                                     IMPATIENT CUSTOMER
                         You calling me a liar?

                                     DANTE
                         No; he was probably just resting his 
                         eyes.

                                     IMPATIENT CUSTOMER
                         What the hell is that? Resting his 
                         eyes! It's not like he's some 
                         goddamned air traffic controller!

                                     DANTE
                         Actually, that's his night job.

                                     IMPATIENT CUSTOMER
                         Such a wiseass. But go ahead. Crack 
                         wise. That's why you're jockeying a 
                         register in some fucking local 
                         convenience store instead of doing 
                         an honest day's work.
                              (tosses tape on counter)
                         I got no more time to bullshit around 
                         waiting for that sonofabitch.  You 
                         make sure this gets back. The number's 
                         eight-twelve-Wynarski. And I wanted 
                         to get a damn movie, too.

                                     DANTE
                         If you'll just tell me the title of 
                         your rental choice, I'll have him 
                         hold it for you.

                                     IMPATIENT CUSTOMER
                              (storming out)
                         Don't hurt yourself. I'm going to 
                         Big Choice Video instead.

               He storms out. Dante lifts a ring of keys from the counter.

                                     DANTE
                              (in a whisper)
                         You forgot your keys.

               The half-filled trash can swallows the ring of keys.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               Another VIDEO-ANXIOUS CUSTOMER leans against the video store 
               door. A hapless RANDAL drifts by and stops. He glances at 
               the door, peers inside, and gives the door a tug.

                                     V.A. CUSTOMER
                         The guy ain't here yet.

                                     RANDAL
                         You're kidding. It's almost eleven- 
                         thirty!

                                     V.A. CUSTOMER
                         I know. I've been here since eleven.

                                     RANDAL
                              (kicks the door)
                         Man! I hate it when I can't rent 
                         videos!

                                     V.A. CUSTOMER
                         I would've went to Big Choice, but 
                         the tape I want is right there on 
                         the wall.

                                     RANDAL
                         Which one?

                                     V.A. CUSTOMER
                         Dental School.

                                     RANDAL
                         You came for that too? That's the 
                         movie I came for.

                                     V.A. CUSTOMER
                         I have first dibs.

                                     RANDAL
                         Says who?

                                     V.A. CUSTOMER
                              (suddenly snotty)
                         Says me. I've been here for half an 
                         hour. I'd call that first dibs.

                                     RANDAL
                         Ain't gonna happen, my friend. I'm 
                         getting that tape.

                                     V.A. CUSTOMER
                         Like hell you are!

                                     RANDAL
                         I'll bet you twenty bucks you don't 
                         get to rent that tape.

                                     V.A. CUSTOMER
                         Twenty bucks?

                                     RANDAL
                         Twenty bucks.

                                     V.A. CUSTOMER
                         All right, asshole, you're on.

               RANDAL walks away. The VERY ANXIOUS CUSTOMER stands like a 
               sentry at post. The IMPATIENT CUSTOMER storms up.

                                     IMPATIENT CUSTOMER
                         You see a pair of keys lying around 
                         here somewhere?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               RANDAL dances in, attempting a soft-shoe routine. He sees 
               DANTE and stops dead, midshuffle.

                                     DANTE
                         You're late.

                                     RANDAL
                         What the hell are you doing here? I 
                         thought you were playing hockey at 
                         one.

                                     DANTE
                         The boss called. Arthur fell ill.

                                     RANDAL
                         Why are the shutters closed?

                                     DANTE
                         Someone jammed gum in the locks.

                                     RANDAL
                         Bunch of savages in this town.

                                     DANTE
                         That's what I said.

                                     RANDAL
                         Shit, if I'd known you were working, 
                         I would've come even later.

               A pile of videocassettes is plopped onto the counter, with a 
               single key on top. RANDAL balances the pile of tapes on his 
               head.

                                     RANDAL
                         What time do you have to stay till?

                                     DANTE
                         He assured me that he'd be here by 
                         twelve.

                                     RANDAL
                         What smells like shoe polish?

                                     DANTE
                         Go open the sore.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               The IMPATIENT CUSTOMER stops RANDAL.

                                     IMPATIENT CUSTOMER
                         Hey-did you see a set of keys lying 
                         around here?

                                     RANDAL
                              (as Short-round)
                         No time for love, Doctor Jones!

               RANDAL marches off. The IMPATIENT CUSTOMER stares after him.

                                     IMPATIENT CUSTOMER
                         Fucking kids.

               The VERY ANXIOUS CUSTOMER now sits on the ground, next to 
               the video store door. RANDAL balances his burden and shoves 
               the key into the lock. The VERY ANXIOUS CUSTOMER stares as 
               RANDAL enters the store. The door closes behind him, only to 
               be held ajar in a gentlemanly fashion a few moments later.  
               RANDAL smiles.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               A coffee filter is shoved into the metal pan and someone 
               heaps ground coffee on it. We've seen this same routine 
               before. DANTE crosses back to his post, as RANDAL enters, 
               tossing the key into the air happily and catching it. He 
               picks the cat up.

                                     RANDAL
                         Some guy just came in refusing to 
                         pay late fees. He said the store was 
                         closed for two hours yesterday.  I 
                         tore up his membership.

                                     DANTE
                         Shocking abuse of authority.

                                     RANDAL
                         I'm a firm believer in the philosophy 
                         of a ruling class, especially since 
                         I rule.
                              (furtively)
                         Is the Pelican flying?

                                     DANTE
                         Don't screw with it. It makes us 
                         look suspicious.

                                     RANDAL
                         I can't stand a voyeur. I'll be back.

               RANDAL heads toward the walk-in door.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: BACK ROOM. DAY

               POV: VCR

               A far-away wall is the only thing we see, but mild gruntings 
               give away an ascension of sorts. RANDAL'S head rises into 
               view, as if he's climbing a ladder. He stops and looks into 
               the lens.

               POV: RANDAL

               The PELICAN is a VCR that's hooked up to a surveillance 
               camera. It records quickly. A hand reaches into the frame 
               and shuts it off.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               RANDAL pulls a soda from the cooler.

                                     RANDAL
                         Want something to drink? I'm buying.

                                     DANTE (O.S.)
                         No, thanks.

                                     RANDAL
                         Who was on your phone this morning 
                         at about two-thirty? I was trying to 
                         call for a half an hour.

                                     DANTE (O.S.)
                         Why?

                                     RANDAL
                         I wanted to use your car.

               He walks by a row of snacks and grabs one without looking at 
               it.

                                     RANDAL
                         Snake cake?

               DANTE sits in his seat behind the register. RANDAL grabs a 
               paper and joins him behind the counter.

                                     DANTE
                         You don't want to know.

                                     RANDAL
                         You called Caitlin again?

                                     DANTE
                         She called me.

                                     RANDAL
                         Did you tell Veronica?

                                     DANTE
                         One fight a day with Veronica is 
                         about all I can stomach, thanks.

                                     RANDAL
                         What do you two fight about?

                                     DANTE
                         I guess it's not really fighting.  
                         She just wants me to leave here, go 
                         back to school, get some direction.

                                     RANDAL
                              (opening paper)
                         I'll bet the most frequent topic of 
                         arguments is Caitlin Bree.

                                     DANTE
                         You win.

                                     RANDAL
                         I'm going to offer you some advice, 
                         my friend: let the past be the past.  
                         Forget Caitlin Bree. You've been 
                         with Veronica for how long now?

                                     DANTE
                         Seven months.

                                     RANDAL
                         Chick's nuts about you. How long did 
                         you date Caitlin?

                                     DANTE
                         Five years.

                                     RANDAL
                         Chick only made you nuts. She cheated 
                         on you how many times?

                                     DANTE
                         Eight and a half.

                                     RANDAL
                              (looks up from paper)
                         Eight and a half?

                                     DANTE
                         Party at John K's-senior year. I get 
                         blitzed and pass out in his bedroom. 
                         Caitlin comes in and dives all over 
                         me.

                                     RANDAL
                         That's cheating?

                                     DANTE
                         In the middle of it, she calls me 
                         Brad.

                                     RANDAL
                         She called you Brad?

                                     DANTE
                         She called me Brad.

                                     RANDAL
                         That's not cheating. People say crazy 
                         shit during sex. One time, I called 
                         this girl "Mom."

                                     DANTE
                         I hit the lights and she freaks.  
                         Turns out she thought I was Brad 
                         Michaelson.

                                     RANDAL
                         What do you mean?

                                     DANTE
                         She was supposed to meet Brad 
                         Michaelson in a bedroom. She picked 
                         the wrong one. She had no idea I was 
                         even at the party.

                                     RANDAL
                         Oh, my God.

                                     DANTE
                         Great story, isn't it?

                                     RANDAL
                         That girl was vile to you.

                                     DANTE
                         Interesting postscript to that story: 
                         Do you know who wound up going with 
                         Brad Michaelson in the other dark 
                         bedroom?

                                     RANDAL
                         Your mother.

                                     DANTE
                         Allan Harris.

                                     RANDAL
                         Chess team Allan Harris?!

                                     DANTE
                         The two moved to Idaho together after 
                         graduation. They raise sheep.

                                     RANDAL
                         That's frightening.

                                     DANTE
                         It takes different strokes to move 
                         the world.

                                     RANDAL
                         In light of this lurid tale, I don't 
                         see how you could even romanticize 
                         your relationship with Caitlin-she 
                         broke your heart and inadvertently 
                         drove men to deviant lifestyles.

                                     DANTE
                         Because there was a lot of good in 
                         our relationship.

                                     RANDAL
                         Oh yeah.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm serious. Aside from the cheating, 
                         we were a great couple.  That's what 
                         high school's all about-algebra, bad 
                         lunch, and infidelity.

                                     RANDAL
                         You think things would be any 
                         different now?

                                     DANTE
                         They are. When she calls me now, 
                         she's a different person-she's 
                         frightened and vulnerable. She's 
                         about to finish college and enter 
                         the real world. That's got to be 
                         scary for anyone.

                                     RANDAL
                              (suddenly recalling)
                         Oh shit, I've got to place an order.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm talking to myself here.

                                     RANDAL
                         No, no, I'm listening. She's leaving 
                         college, and...?

                                     DANTE
                         ...and she's looking to me for 
                         support. And I think that this is 
                         leading our relationship to a new 
                         level.

                                     RANDAL
                         What about Veronica?

                                     DANTE
                         I think the arguments Veronica and I 
                         are having are some kind of 
                         manifestation of a subconscious desire 
                         to break away from her so that I can 
                         pursue the possibility of a more 
                         meaningful relationship with Caitlin.

                                     RANDAL
                         Caitlin's on the same wave-length?

                                     DANTE
                         I think it's safe to say yes.

                                     RANDAL
                         Then I think all four of you had 
                         better sit down and talk it over.

                                     DANTE
                         All four?

                                     RANDAL
                         You, Veronica, Caitlin...
                              (lays paper flat)
                         ...and Caitlin's fiancÚ.

               THE HEADLINE of the engagement announcement reads, BREE TO 
               WED ASIAN DESIGN MAJOR.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: VIDEO STORE. DAY

               RANDAL dials the phone. He holds a list in his hand.

                                     RANDAL
                         Yes, I'd like to place an order, 
                         please... Thank you.

               A MOTHER and her SMALL CHILD approach the counter.

                                     MOTHER
                         Excuse me, but do you sell videotapes?

                                     RANDAL
                         What were you looking for?

                                     MOTHER
                              (smiling)
                         It's called Happy Scrappy-The Hero 
                         Pup.

                                     SMALL CHILD
                         Happy Scrappy!

                                     RANDAL
                         I'm on the phone with the distribution 
                         house now. Let me make sure they 
                         have it. What's it called again?

                                     MOTHER
                         Happy Scrappy-The Hero Pup.

                                     SMALL CHILD
                         Happy Scrappy!

                                     MOTHER
                              (more smiling)
                         She loves the tape.

                                     RANDAL
                         Obviously.
                              (to phone)
                         Yes, hello; this is R.S.T. Video 
                         calling. Customer number four-
                         three-five-zero-two-nine. I'd like 
                         to place an order... Okay... I need 
                         one each of the following tapes: 
                         Whisper in the Wind, To Each His 
                         Own, Put it Where It Doesn't Belong, 
                         My Pipes Need Cleaning, All Tit-
                         Fucking, Volume Eight, I Need Your 
                         Cock, Ass-Worshipping Rim-Jobbers, 
                         My Cunt and Eight Shafts, Cum Clean, 
                         Cum-Gargling Naked Sluts, Cum Buns 
                         Three, Cumming in a Sock, Cum on 
                         Eileen, Huge Black Cocks with Pearly 
                         White Cum, Slam It Up My Too-Loose 
                         Ass, Ass Blasters in Outer Space, 
                         Blowjobs by Betsy, Sucking Cock and 
                         Cunt, Finger My Ass, Play with my 
                         Puss, Three on a Dildo, Girls Who 
                         Crave Cock, Girls Who Crave Cunt, 
                         Men Alone Two-The K.Y. Connection, 
                         Pink Pussy Lips, and All Holes Filled 
                         with Hard Cock.  Oh, and...
                              (to MOTHER)
                         What was the name of that movie?

                                     MOTHER
                              (nearly dazed)
                         Happy Scrappy-The Hero Pup.

                                     RANDAL
                              (on phone)
                         And a copy of Happy Scrappy-The Hero 
                         Pup... Okay, thanks.
                              (hangs up; to MOTHER)
                         Sixteen forty-nine. It'll be here 
                         Monday.

               Silence. Then...

                                     SMALL CHILD
                         Cunt!

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               DANTE carries a litter box to be dumped. He pauses midstrike 
               and lays it on the ice cream chest. DANTE picks up the phone 
               and looks at the paper. He dials and waits. _

                                     DANTE
                         Yes, I'd like to check on a misprint 
                         in today's edition... Today's 
                         edition... It says "Bree to Wed Asian 
                         Design Major... No, no; everything's 
                         spelled fine. I just wanted to know 
                         if the piece was a misprint... I 
                         don't know, like a typographical 
                         error or something...

               A CUSTOMER comes to the counter and waits. He looks at the 
               litter box. A black cat suddenly jumps into it and starts 
               pawing around.

                                     DANTE (O.S.)
                         Maybe it's supposed to be Caitlin 
                         Bray, or Caitlin Bre, with one e... 
                         I'm a curious party... A curious 
                         party...

               DANTE ON THE PHONE:

                                     DANTE
                         ...I'm an ex-boyfriend... Well, it's 
                         just that we talk all the time, and 
                         she never mentioned this engagement, 
                         which is why I'm thinking maybe it's 
                         a misprint...

               The CUSTOMER watches as the cat takes a huge dump, leaning 
               on its haunches to accommodate the stinky load.

                                     DANTE (O.S.)
                         ...Are you sure?... Maybe there's 
                         like a vindictive printer working 
                         for you...

               DANTE ON THE PHONE:

                                     DANTE
                         Meaning like someone who maybe-I 
                         don't know-asked her out once and 
                         got shot down, and his revenge is 
                         throwing this bogus article in when 
                         the paper went to press... Hello?... 
                         Hello?

               DANTE hangs up. He looks at the paper ruefully, shaking his 
               head. He then sniffs the air.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               JAY, SILENT BOB and OLAF lean against wall.

                                     JAY
                         "Not in me." That's what she says.  
                         I gotta pull out and spank it to get 
                         it on. So I blow a nut on her belly, 
                         and I get out of there, just as my 
                         uncle walks in. It was such a close 
                         call. I tell you what, though, I 
                         don't care if she is my cousin, I'm 
                         gonna knock those boots again tonight.

               TWO GIRLS join them.

                                     JAY
                         Oh shit, look who it is. The human 
                         vacuum.

                                     GIRL 1
                         Scumbag. What are you doing?

                                     JAY
                         Nothing. Just hanging out with Silent 
                         Bob and his cousin.

                                     GIRL 1
                              (to SILENT BOB)
                         He's your cousin?

                                     JAY
                         Check this out, he's from Russia.

                                     GIRL 1
                         No way.

                                     JAY
                         I swear to God. Silent Bob, am I 
                         lying?

               SILENT BOB SHAKES HIS HEAD:

                                     JAY
                         See? And Silent Bob never told a lie 
                         in his life.

                                     GIRL 2
                         What part of Russia?

                                     JAY
                         I don't fucking know. What am I, his 
                         biographer?
                              (to OLAF)
                         Olaf, what part of Russia are you 
                         from?

               OLAF looks quizzically at SILENT BOB.

                                     SILENT BOB
                              (in Russian)
                         Home.

                                     OLAF
                              (comprehending)
                         Moscow.

                                     GIRL 1
                         He only speaks Russian?

                                     JAY
                         He knows some English, but he can't 
                         not speak it good like we do.

                                     GIRL 2
                         Is he staying here?

                                     JAY
                         He's moving to the big city next 
                         week. He wants to be a metal singer.

                                     GIRL 1
                         No way!

                                     JAY
                         Swear.
                              (to OLAF)
                         Olaf, metal!

               OLAF makes a metal face.

                                     JAY
                         That's his fucking metal face.
                              (to OLAF)
                         Olaf, girls nice?

               OLAF looks the girls up and down.

                                     OLAF
                         Skrelnick.

                                     JAY
                              (laughs)
                         That's fucked up.

                                     GIRL 1
                         What did he say?

                                     JAY
                         I don't know, man. He's a fucking 
                         character.

                                     GIRL 2
                         He really wants to play metal?

                                     JAY
                         He's got his own band in Moscow.  
                         It's called "Fuck Your Yankee Blue 
                         Jeans" or something like that.

                                     GIRL 1
                         That doesn't sound metal.

                                     JAY
                         You gotta hear him sing.
                              (to OLAF)
                         Olaf, "Berserker!"

               OLAF laughs and shakes his head.

                                     JAY
                         Come on, man, "Berserker!"

                                     GIRL 2
                         Does he sing in English or Russian?

                                     JAY
                         English.
                              (to OLAF)
                         Come on, "Berserker!" Girls think 
                         sexy.

                                     OLAF
                              (relents)
                         Da. Da.

                                     JAY
                         He's gonna sing it. This is too funny.

                                     OLAF
                              (in broken English)
                         MY LOVE FOR YOU IS LIKE A TRUCK 
                         BERSERKER! WOULD YOU LIKE SOME MAKING 
                         FUCK? BERSERKER!

                                     JAY
                              (laughing)
                         That's fucking funny, man!

                                     GIRL 1
                         Did he say "making fuck?"

                                     JAY
                         Wait, there's more.
                              (to OLAF)
                         Olaf: sing...
                              (makes pot-smoking 
                              face)

                                     OLAF
                              (nods in understanding)
                         MY LOVE FOR YOU IS LIKE A ROCK 
                         BERSERKER!WOULD YOU LIKE TO SMOKE 
                         SOME POT? BERSERKER!

               OLAF busts a crimson metal sneer and cackles deeply.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: VIDEO STORE. DAY

               RANDAL leans back in his chair, staring up at the TV. The 
               theme to Star Wars plays. He stands, points the remote, clicks 
               the TV off, and ponders.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: VIDEO STORE. DAY

               RANDAL locks the door and walks away, while OLAF sings for 
               the small crowd.

                                     OLAF
                         MY LOVE FOR YOU IS TICKING CLOCK 
                         BERSERKER!WOULD YOU LIKE TO SUCK MY 
                         COCK? BERSERKER!

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               DANTE is tugging at a can of Pringles potato chips. The can 
               is stuck on a MAN'S hand.

                                     DANTE
                         You hold the counter and I'll pull.

                                     MAN
                         Usually I just turn the can upside 
                         down.

                                     DANTE
                              (pulling)
                         Maybe we should soap your hand or 
                         something.

                                     MAN
                              (straining)
                         They oughta put some kind of warning 
                         on these cans, like they do with 
                         cigarettes.

                                     DANTE
                         I think it's coming now...

               The can pops off and DANTE staggers back a few steps. The 
               man rubs his hand.

                                     MAN
                         Thanks. I thought I was gonna have 
                         to go to the hospital.

                                     DANTE
                         I'll throw this out. Precautionary 
                         measure.

                                     MAN
                         It stings a little.

                                     DANTE
                         A word of advice: Sometimes it's 
                         best to let those hard to reach chips 
                         go.

               DANTE steps behind the counter.

                                     MAN
                         Thanks.

               The MAN exits as RANDAL enters. DANTE throws the canister 
               away.

                                     DANTE
                         Do you know that article is accurate?  
                         Caitlin's really getting married!

                                     RANDAL
                         You know what I just watched?

                                     DANTE
                         Me pulling a can off some moron's 
                         fist.

                                     RANDAL
                         Return of the Jedi.

                                     DANTE
                         Didn't you hear me? Caitlin really 
                         is getting married.

                                     RANDAL
                         Which did you like better: Jedi or 
                         The Empire Strikes Back.

                                     DANTE
                              (exasperated)
                         Empire.

                                     RANDAL
                         Blasphemy.

                                     DANTE
                         Empire had the better ending: Luke 
                         gets his hand cut off, and finds out 
                         Vader's his father; Han gets frozen 
                         and taken away by Boba Fett.  It 
                         ends on such a down note. And that's 
                         life-a series of down endings. All 
                         Jedi had was a bunch of Muppets.

                                     RANDAL
                         There was something else going on in 
                         Jedi. I never noticed it until today.

               RANDAL follows DANTE as he cleans up around the store.

                                     DANTE
                         What's that?

                                     RANDAL
                         All right, Vader's boss...

                                     DANTE
                         The Emperor.

                                     RANDAL
                         Right, the Emperor. Now the Emperor 
                         is kind of a spiritual figure, yes?

                                     DANTE
                         How do you mean?

                                     RANDAL
                         Well, he's like the pope for the 
                         dark side of the Force. He's a holy 
                         man; a shaman, kind of, albeit an 
                         evil one.

                                     DANTE
                         I guess.

                                     RANDAL
                         Now, he's in charge of the Empire.  
                         The Imperial government is under his 
                         control. And the entire galaxy is 
                         under Imperial rule.

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah.

                                     RANDAL
                         Then wouldn't that logically mean 
                         that it's a theocracy? If the head 
                         of the Empire is a priest of some 
                         sort, then it stands to reason that 
                         the government is therefore one based 
                         on religion.

                                     DANTE
                         It would stand to reason, yes.

                                     RANDAL
                         Hence, the Empire was a fascist 
                         theocracy, and the rebel forces were 
                         therefore battling religious 
                         persecution.

                                     DANTE
                         More or less.

                                     RANDAL
                         The only problem is that at no point 
                         in the series did I ever hear Leia 
                         or any of the rebels declare a 
                         particular religious belief.

                                     DANTE
                         I think they were Catholics.

               A BLUE-COLLAR MAN half enters the door.

                                     BLUE-COLLAR MAN
                         Are you open?

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah. Come in.

               He goes to the coffee machine and makes a cup of joe.

                                     RANDAL
                         You know what else I noticed in Jedi?

                                     DANTE
                         There's more?

                                     RANDAL
                         So they build another Death Star, 
                         right?

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah.

                                     RANDAL
                         Now the first one they built was 
                         completed and fully operational before 
                         the Rebels destroyed it.

                                     DANTE
                         Luke blew it up. Give credit where 
                         it's due.

                                     RANDAL
                         And the second one was still being 
                         built when they blew it up.

                                     DANTE
                         Compliments of Lando Calrissian.

                                     RANDAL
                         Something just never sat right with 
                         me the second time they destroyed 
                         it. I could never put my finger on 
                         it-something just wasn't right.

                                     DANTE
                         And you figured it out?

                                     RANDAL
                         Well, the thing is, the first Death 
                         Star was manned by the Imperial army-
                         storm troopers, dignitaries-the only 
                         people onboard were Imperials.

                                     DANTE
                         Basically.

                                     RANDAL
                         So when they blew it up, no prob.
                         Evil is punished.

                                     DANTE
                         And the second time around...?

                                     RANDAL
                         The second time around, it wasn't 
                         even finished yet. They were still 
                         under construction.

                                     DANTE
                         So?

                                     RANDAL
                         A construction job of that magnitude 
                         would require a helluva lot more 
                         manpower than the Imperial army had 
                         to offer. I'll bet there were 
                         independent contractors working on 
                         that thing: plumbers, aluminum siders, 
                         roofers.

                                     DANTE
                         Not just Imperials, is what you're 
                         getting at.

                                     RANDAL
                         Exactly. In order to get it built 
                         quickly and quietly they'd hire 
                         anybody who could do the job. Do you 
                         think the average storm trooper knows 
                         how to install a toilet main?  All 
                         they know is killing and white 
                         uniforms.

                                     DANTE
                         All right, so even if independent 
                         contractors are working on the Death 
                         Star, why are you uneasy with its 
                         destruction?

                                     RANDAL
                         All those innocent contractors
                         hired to do a job were killed- 
                         casualties of a war they had nothing 
                         to do with.
                              (notices Dante's 
                              confusion)
                         All right, look-you're a roofer, and 
                         some juicy government contract comes 
                         your way; you got the wife and kids 
                         and the two-story in suburbia-this 
                         is a government contract, which means 
                         all sorts of benefits. All of a sudden 
                         these left-wing militants blast you 
                         with lasers and wipe out everyone 
                         within a three-mile radius.  You 
                         didn't ask for that. You have no 
                         personal politics. You're just trying 
                         to scrape out a living.

               The BLUE-COLLAR MAN joins them.

                                     BLUE-COLLAR MAN
                         Excuse me. I don't mean to interrupt, 
                         but what were you talking about?

                                     RANDAL
                         The ending of Return of the Jedi.

                                     DANTE
                         My friend is trying to convince me 
                         that any contractors working on the 
                         uncompleted Death Star were innocent 
                         victims when the space station was 
                         destroyed by the rebels.

                                     BLUE-COLLAR MAN
                         Well, I'm a contractor myself. I'm a 
                         roofer...
                              (digs into pocket and 
                              produces business 
                              card)
                         Dunn and Reddy Home Improvements.  
                         And speaking as a roofer, I can say 
                         that a roofer's personal politics 
                         come heavily into play when choosing 
                         jobs.

                                     RANDAL
                         Like when?

                                     BLUE-COLLAR MAN
                         Three months ago I was offered a job 
                         up in the hills. A beautiful house 
                         with tons of property. It was a simple 
                         reshingling job, but I was told that 
                         if it was finished within a day, my 
                         price would be doubled.  Then I 
                         realized whose house it was.

                                     DANTE
                         Whose house was it?

                                     BLUE-COLLAR MAN
                         Dominick Bambino's.

                                     RANDAL
                         "Babyface" Bambino? The gangster?

                                     BLUE-COLLAR MAN
                         The same. The money was right, but 
                         the risk was too big. I knew who he 
                         was, and based on that, I passed the 
                         job on to a friend of mine.

                                     DANTE
                         Based on personal politics.

                                     BLUE-COLLAR MAN
                         Right. And that week, the Foresci 
                         family put a hit on Babyface's house. 
                         My friend was shot and killed. He 
                         wasn't even finished shingling.

                                     RANDAL
                         No way!

                                     BLUE-COLLAR MAN
                              (paying for coffee)
                         I'm alive because I knew there were 
                         risks involved taking on that 
                         particular client. My friend wasn't 
                         so lucky.
                              (pauses to reflect)
                         You know, any contractor willing to 
                         work on that Death Star knew the 
                         risks. If they were killed, it was 
                         their own fault. A roofer listens to 
                         this...
                              (taps his heart)
                         not his wallet.

               The BLUE-COLLAR MAN exits. DANTE and RANDAL remain 
               respectfully quiet for a moment. An angry WOMAN opens the 
               door and pokes her head in.

                                     WOMAN
                         Is that video store open or not?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: VIDEO STORE. DAY

               RANDAL reads a newspaper. An INDECISIVE CUSTOMER studies the 
               two rental choices she holds. She looks from one movie to 
               the other repeatedly.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                              (attempting a solicit 
                              help)
                         They say so much, but they never 
                         tell you if it's any good.

               RANDAL hardly stirs and continues to read his paper. The 
               INDECISIVE CUSTOMER half turns to see if her comment was 
               even heard. She tries again, but this time with a different 
               approach.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                         Are either of these any good?

               RANDAL continues to read. The INDECISIVE CUSTOMER tries 
               harder, then louder and more direct:

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                         Sir!

               RANDAL continues to read.

                                     RANDAL
                              (flatly)
                         What.

               The INDECISIVE CUSTOMER holds up her rental choices.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                              (politely)
                         Are either of these any good?

               RANDAL, as always, reads on.

                                     RANDAL
                              (again, flatly)
                         I don't watch movies.

               The INDECISIVE CUSTOMER is a tad flabbergasted, but not put 
               off.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                         Well, have you heard anything about 
                         either of them?

               RANDAL does his level best to not get involved.

                                     RANDAL
                              (reading)
                         No.

               The INDECISIVE CUSTOMER challenges him.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                              (in disbelief)
                         You've never heard anybody say 
                         anything about either movie?

                                     RANDAL (O.S.)
                         I find it's best to stay out of other 
                         people's affairs.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                              (with a new 
                              determination)
                         Well, how about these two movies?
                              (holds up the same 
                              two)

               RANDAL continues to read his paper, not looking up.

                                     RANDAL
                         They suck.

               The INDECISIVE CUSTOMER smirks smugly at RANDAL and his paper. 
               She has caught him.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                         I just held up the same two movies.  
                         You're not even paying attention.

                                     RANDAL
                         No, I wasn't.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                         I don't think your manager would 
                         appreciate...

                                     RANDAL
                              (turning the page)
                         I don't appreciate your ruse, ma'am.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                         I beg your pardon!

                                     RANDAL
                              (reading on)
                         Your ruse. Your cunning attempt to 
                         trick me.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                              (defending herself)
                         I only pointed out that you weren't 
                         paying any attention to what I was 
                         saying.

                                     RANDAL
                              (turning page and 
                              reading)
                         I hope it feels good.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                         You hope what feels good?

                                     RANDAL
                         I hope it feels so good to be right.  
                         There is nothing more exhilarating 
                         than pointing out the shortcomings 
                         of others, is there?

               The INDECISIVE CUSTOMER wears a face that belies utter 
               disbelief in the audacity of this most lackadaisical video 
               clerk. The unmoving newspaper illustrates the total 
               disinterest of the news-hungry RANDAL. The INDECISIVE CUSTOMER 
               shakes her head in disgust and throws the movies back onto 
               the wall.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                              (in a huff)
                         Well this is the last time I ever 
                         rent here...

                                     RANDAL
                         You'll be missed.

                                     INDECISIVE CUSTOMER
                              (losing it altogether)
                         Screw you!

               She storms out. RANDAL is offended. He hops over the counter 
               and whips the door open.

                                     RANDAL
                              (calling after her)
                         You're not allowed to rent here 
                         anymore!

               RANDAL closes the door and stands there, momentarily, totally 
               appalled by her exiting remark, then shakes his head.

                                     RANDAL
                         Screw me!

               He reaches behind the counter and grabs a ring of keys.

               Exiting, he locks the door behind him from the outside, gives 
               it a tug to ensure its security, and storms off in the 
               opposite direction from the woman.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               DANTE is staring, open-mouthed, at something O.C. RANDAL 
               hurls the door open and immediately launches into his tirade.

                                     RANDAL
                         You'll never believe what this unruly 
                         customer just said...

                                     DANTE
                              (a hand up to urge 
                              him to hush)
                         Wait.

                                     RANDAL
                              (looking around)
                         She's in here?

                                     DANTE
                         This guy is going through all of the 
                         eggs. Look.

               An ODD MAN sits on the floor, surrounded by cartons of eggs, 
               all opened. He grabs a carton from the cooler case, pops it 
               open, and examines each egg carefully.

                                     DANTE (O.S.)
                         This has been going on for twenty 
                         minutes.

               RANDAL and DANTE study the O.C. oddity.

                                     RANDAL
                         What's he looking for?

                                     DANTE
                         He said he has to find a perfect 
                         dozen.

                                     RANDAL
                         Perfect dozen.

                                     DANTE
                         Each egg has to be perfect.

                                     RANDAL
                         The quest isn't going well?

                                     DANTE
                         Obviously not. Look at all the cartons 
                         that didn't make the grade.

               The ODD MAN holds an egg up to the light and studies it from 
               several different angles.

                                     RANDAL (O.S.)
                         Why doesn't he just mix and match?

                                     DANTE
                         I told him that and he yelled at me.

               RANDAL snickers at his friend.

                                     RANDAL
                         What did he say?

                                     DANTE
                         He said it was important to have 
                         standards. He said nobody has pride 
                         anymore.

                                     RANDAL
                         It's not like you laid the eggs 
                         yourself.

                                     DANTE
                         I'll give him five more minutes then 
                         I'm calling the cops. I don't need 
                         this, man. I'm not even supposed to 
                         be here today.

               A SMOKER steps in.

                                     SMOKER
                         Two packs of cigarettes.

               Dante manages to break his study of the O.C. oddity and 
               searches for the smokes. The smoker glances at RANDAL and 
               then at the O.C. oddity.

               The ODD MAN is spinning an egg on the floor. The SMOKER looks 
               at RANDAL.

                                     RANDAL
                              (Still staring at the 
                              ODD MAN)
                         I'm as puzzled as you.

                                     SMOKER
                              (paying DANTE)
                         I've actually seen it before.

                                     DANTE
                         You know him?

                                     SMOKER
                         No, I've seen that behavior before.
                         Looking for the perfect carton of 
                         eggs, right?

                                     RANDAL
                              (a bit astonished)
                         Yeah. How'd you know?

                                     SMOKER
                         I'll bet you a million bucks that 
                         the guy's a guidance counselor.

                                     DANTE
                         Why do you say that?

                                     SMOKER
                         I was in the Food City last year 
                         when the same thing happened, 
                         different guy though. Stock boy told 
                         me that the guy had been looking 
                         through the eggs for like half an 
                         hour, doing all sorts of endurance 
                         tests and shit. I ask the kid how 
                         come nobody called the manager, and 
                         he says it happens twice a week, 
                         sometimes more.

                                     RANDAL
                         Get out of here.

                                     SMOKER
                         I kid you not. They call it Shell 
                         Shock. Only happens with guidance 
                         counselors for some reason. The kid 
                         said they used to make a big deal 
                         about it, but there's no point.

               The ODD MAN places a handkerchief over an egg on the floor.  
               He quickly whisks the handkerchief away to reveal the egg 
               still sitting on the floor.

                                     SMOKER (O.S.)
                         He said they always pay for whatever 
                         they break and they never bother 
                         anybody.

               DANTE, RANDAL and the SMOKER stare at the O.C. man.

                                     DANTE
                         Why guidance counselors?

                                     SMOKER
                         If your job served as little purpose 
                         as theirs, wouldn't you lose it, 
                         too?

                                     RANDAL
                         Come to think of it, my guidance 
                         counselor was kind of worthless.

                                     SMOKER
                              (grabbing matches)
                         See? It's important to have a job 
                         that makes a difference, boys.  That's 
                         why I kill Chinamen for the railroad.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               POV RANDAL: THE EMPTY COUNTER

               And then a LITTLE GIRL comes into view, smiling and holding 
               money. She can't be any more than five.

                                     LITTLE GIRL
                              (innocently)
                         Can I have a pack of cigarettes?

               RANDAL, without looking up from his magazine, completes the 
               transaction. THE LITTLE GIRL puts a cigarette in her mouth.

               RANDAL hands her matches. DANTE returns to the counter as 
               the girl skips away. Dante holds a price gun.

                                     DANTE
                         Did you ever notice all the prices 
                         end in nine? Damn, that's eerie.

                                     RANDAL
                         You know how much money the average 
                         jizz-mopper make per hour?

                                     DANTE
                         What's a jizz-mopper?

                                     RANDAL
                         He's the guy in those nudie-booth 
                         joints who cleans up after each guy 
                         that jerks off.

                                     DANTE
                         Nudie booth?

                                     RANDAL
                         Nudie booth. You've never been in a 
                         nudie booth?

                                     DANTE
                         I guess not.

               A female CUSTOMER pops items onto the counter. DANTE rings 
               her up.

                                     RANDAL
                         Oh, it's great. You step into this 
                         little booth and there's this window 
                         between you and this naked woman, 
                         and she puts on this little show for 
                         like ten bucks.

                                     DANTE
                         What kind of show?

                                     RANDAL
                         Think of the weirdest, craziest shit 
                         you'd like to see chicks do.  These 
                         chicks do it all. They insert things 
                         into any opening in their body... 
                         any opening.
                              (to customer)
                         He's led a very sheltered life.

                                     DANTE
                              (indicating CUSTOMER)
                         Can we talk about this later?

                                     RANDAL
                         The jizz-mopper's job is to clean up 
                         the booths afterward, because 
                         practically everybody shoots a load 
                         against the window, and I don't know 
                         if you know or not, but cum leaves 
                         streaks if you don't clean it right 
                         away.

                                     CUSTOMER
                              (grabbing her bag, 
                              disgusted)
                         This is the last time I come to this 
                         place.

                                     DANTE
                         Excuse me?

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Using filthy language in front of 
                         the customers... you should both get 
                         fired.

                                     DANTE
                         We're sorry, ma'am. We got a little 
                         carried away.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Well, I don't know if sorry can make 
                         up for it. I found your remarks highly 
                         offensive.

               The CUSTOMER stands silently, awaiting something.

                                     RANDAL
                         Well, you think that's offensive...

               RANDAL flips open the magazine's centerfold-a graphic picture 
               of a woman with her vaginal lips and anus spread wide open.

                                     RANDAL
                         ...then check this out. I think you 
                         can see her kidneys.

               RANDAL checks out the centerfold wistfully. DANTE frantically 
               apologizes to the rapidly exiting CUSTOMER.

                                     DANTE
                         Ma'am, ma'am, I'm sorry! Please, 
                         wait a second, ma'am...

               The CUSTOMER is gone. DANTE'S pursuit stops at the counter.  
               DANTE turns on RANDAL.

                                     DANTE
                         Why do you do things like that? You 
                         know she's going to come back and 
                         tell the boss.

                                     RANDAL
                         Who cares? That lady's an asshole.  
                         Everybody that comes in here is way 
                         too uptight. This job would be great 
                         if it wasn't for the fucking 
                         customers.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm gonna hear it tomorrow.

                                     RANDAL
                         You gotta loosen up, my friend.  
                         You'd feel a hell of a lot better if 
                         you'd rip into the occasional 
                         customer.

                                     DANTE
                         What for? They don't bother me if I 
                         don't bother them.

                                     RANDAL
                         Liar! Tell me there aren't customers 
                         that annoy the piss out of you on a 
                         daily basis.

                                     DANTE
                         There aren't.

                                     RANDAL
                         How can you lie like that? Why don't 
                         you vent? Vent your frustration. 
                         Come on, who pisses you off?

                                     DANTE
                              (reluctantly)
                         It's not really anyone per se, it's 
                         more of separate groupings.

                                     RANDAL
                         Let's hear it.

                                     DANTE
                              (pause)
                         The milkmaids.

                                     RANDAL
                         The milkmaids?

               INSERT: MILK HANDLER

               A WOMAN pulls out gallon after gallon, looking deep into the 
               cooler for that perfect container of milk.

                                     DANTE (O.S.)
                         The women that go through every gallon 
                         of milk looking for a later date. As 
                         if somewhere-beyond all the other 
                         gallons-is a container of milk that 
                         won't go bad for like a decade.

               END INSERT

                                     RANDAL
                         You know who I can do without? I 
                         could do without the people in the 
                         video store.

                                     DANTE
                         Which ones?

                                     RANDAL
                         All of them.

               MONTAGE INSERT #1/VIDEO JERKS

               A series of people addressing the camera, asking the dumb 
               questions.

                                     FIRST
                         What would you get for a six-year- 
                         old boy who chronically wets his 
                         bed?

                                     SECOND
                              (in front of stocked 
                              new release shelf)
                         Do you have any new movies in?

                                     THIRD
                         Do you have that one with the guy 
                         who was in that movie that was out 
                         last year?

               END INSERT

                                     RANDAL
                         And they never rent quality flicks; 
                         they always pick the most 
                         intellectually devoid movie on the 
                         rack.

               MONTAGE INSERT #2/"Ooooh!..."

               An identical series of customers finding their ideal choices.

                                     FIRST
                         Ooooh! Home Alone!

                                     SECOND
                         Ooooh! Hook!

                                     THIRD
                         Ooooh! Navy Seals!

               END INSERT

                                     RANDAL
                         It's like in order to join, they 
                         have to have an IQ less than their 
                         shoe size.

                                     DANTE
                         You think you get stupid questions? 
                         You should hear the barrage of stupid 
                         questions I get.

               MONTAGE INSERT #3/DUMB QUESTIONS

               A series of people standing in various locations throughout 
               the convenience store, asking truly dumb questions.

                                     FIRST
                              (holding coffee)
                         What do you mean there's no ice?  
                         You mean I've gotta drink this coffee 
                         hot?!

                                     SECOND
                              (holding up item from 
                              clearly marked $.99 
                              display)
                         How much?

                                     THIRD
                              (peeking in door)
                         Do you sell hubcaps?

               END INSERT

                                     RANDAL
                         See? You vented. Don't you feel better 
                         now?

                                     DANTE
                         No.

                                     RANDAL
                         Why not?

                                     DANTE
                         Because my ex-girlfriend is getting 
                         married.

                                     RANDAL
                         Jesus, you got a one-track mind.
                         It's always Caitlin, Caitlin, 
                         Caitlin...

                                     DANTE
                              (jerking head toward 
                              door)
                         Veronica!

               DANTE gives RANDAL a shove to shut him up. VERONICA enters 
               the store, carrying books and something covered with aluminum 
               foil.

                                     VERONICA
                         What happened to home by twelve?

               DANTE is suddenly by her side, taking the books from under 
               her arm.

                                     DANTE
                         He still hasn't shown up. Why aren't 
                         you in class?

                                     VERONICA
                         Lit 101 got canceled, so I stopped 
                         home and brought you some lunch.

                                     DANTE
                         What is it?

                                     VERONICA
                         Peanut butter and jelly with the 
                         crusts cut off. What do you think it 
                         is? It's lasagne.

                                     DANTE
                         Really?
                              (kisses her forehead)
                         You're the best.

                                     VERONICA
                         I'm glad you've calmed down a bit.
                              (to RANDAL)
                         Hi, Randal.

                                     RANDAL (O.S.)
                              (exaggeratively 
                              impressed)
                         Thirty-seven!

                                     DANTE
                              (to O.C.)
                         Shut up!
                              (to VERONICA)
                         Yes, I've calmed down, I'm still not 
                         happy about it, but I've been able 
                         to deal.

               RANDAL makes loud slurping noises from O.C.

                                     DANTE
                              (to O.C.)
                         Why don't you go back to the video 
                         store?

               RANDAL walks past the two, and pats VERONICA on the head. He 
               exits.

                                     VERONICA
                         You had to tell him.

                                     DANTE
                         I had to tell someone. He put it 
                         into perspective.

                                     VERONICA
                         What did he say?

                                     DANTE
                         At least he wasn't thirty-six.

                                     VERONICA
                         And that made you feel better?

                                     DANTE
                         And he said most of them are college 
                         guys, I've never met or seen.

                                     VERONICA
                         The ostrich syndrome: if you don't 
                         see it...

                                     DANTE
                         ...it isn't there. Yes.

                                     VERONICA
                         Thank you for being rational.

                                     DANTE
                         Thank you for the lasagne.

                                     VERONICA
                         You couldn't get these shutters open?

                                     DANTE
                         I called a locksmith and he said the 
                         earliest he could get here it 
                         tomorrow.

                                     VERONICA
                         Bummer, Well, I've gotta head back 
                         for the one-thirty class.

                                     DANTE
                         What time do you get finished?

                                     VERONICA
                         Eight. But I have a sorority meeting 
                         till nine, so I'll be back before 
                         you close. Can we go out and get 
                         some coffee?

                                     DANTE
                         Sure.

                                     VERONICA
                         Good.
                              (kisses him)
                         I'll see you when you close, then.  
                         Enjoy the lasagne.

               She exits. DANTE leans against the magazine rack with his 
               lasagne, contemplative. RANDAL pops his head in and makes 
               the loud slurping noise again.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: VIDEO STORE. DAY

               RANDAL is recommending titles to potential customers.

                                     RANDAL
                         All right, now if you're really 
                         feeling dangerous tonight, then Smokey 
                         and the Bandit Three is the movie 
                         you must rent.

                                     CUSTOMER
                              (studying box)
                         This doesn't even have Burt Reynolds 
                         in it.

                                     RANDAL
                         Hey, neither did ET; but that was a 
                         great movie, right?

               DANTE opens the door and leans in.

                                     DANTE
                         Can you come next door? I gotta make 
                         a phone call.

                                     RANDAL
                              (to DANTE)
                         Smokey Three: thumbs up, am I right?

                                     DANTE
                         The best Burtless movie ever made.

               DANTE exits. RANDAL gives his customers the what-did-I-tell- 
               you look.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               THE CAT lies on the counter. Pull back to reveal RANDAL as 
               he rings up an order. The CUSTOMER pets the cat, smiling.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Awww, he's so cute. What's his name?

                                     RANDAL
                         Lenin's Tomb.

               Dolly over to DANTE, on the phone.

                                     DANTE
                         Hello, is Mr. Synder there? This is 
                         Dante... Did he say if he was on his 
                         way here?... Here... The convenience 
                         store... I know, but the other guy 
                         called out this morning and Mr.  
                         Synder asked me to cover until he 
                         got here. He said he'd be here by 
                         noon, but it's one-thirty now, so 
                         I... Excuse me... Vermont?!... No, 
                         that can't be; I talked to him this 
                         morning... He left at what time?... 
                         He really went to Vermont?... When 
                         the hell was someone going to tell 
                         me?... He promised he was coming by 
                         noon!... Jesus... When does he get 
                         back?!... TUESDAY!... You've gotta 
                         be fucking kidding me!... I've got a 
                         hockey game at two, and the fucking 
                         shutters are jammed closed, and he's 
                         in Vermont?... I'm not even supposed 
                         to be here today!!
                              (deep sigh)
                         So I'm stuck here till closing?... 
                         This is just great... I just can't 
                         believe... I'm sorry, I didn't mean 
                         to yell at you... No... No, I'll be 
                         all right... Well, that's all I can 
                         do, right?... Thanks.

               He hangs up. RANDAL joins him.

                                     RANDAL
                         Vermont?

                                     DANTE
                         Can you believe this?!

                                     RANDAL
                         He didn't mention it when he called 
                         you this morning?

                                     DANTE
                         Not a fucking word! Slippery shit!

                                     RANDAL
                         So, what-you're stuck here all day?

                                     DANTE
                         FUCK!

                                     RANDAL
                         Why'd you apologize?

                                     DANTE
                         What?

                                     RANDAL
                         I heard you apologize. Why? You have 
                         every right in the world to be mad.

                                     DANTE
                         I know.

                                     RANDAL
                         That seems to be the leitmotif in 
                         your life; ever backing down.

                                     DANTE
                         I don't back down.

                                     RANDAL
                         Yes, you do. You always back down.  
                         You assume blame that isn't yours, 
                         you come in when called as opposed 
                         to enjoying your day off, you buckle 
                         like a belt.

                                     DANTE
                         You know what pisses me off the most?

                                     RANDAL
                         The fact that I'm right about your 
                         buckling?

                                     DANTE
                         I'm going to miss the game.

                                     RANDAL
                         Because you buckled.

                                     DANTE
                         Would you shut the hell up with that 
                         shit? It's not helping.

                                     RANDAL
                         Don't yell at me, pal.

                                     DANTE
                         Sorry.

                                     RANDAL
                         See? There you go again.

                                     DANTE
                         I can't believe I'm going to miss 
                         the game!

                                     RANDAL
                         At least we're stuck here together.

                                     DANTE
                         You've got a customer.

               RANDAL walks away.

                                     RANDAL (O.S.)
                         What? What do you want?!

               DANTE shakes his head in frustration and picks up the phone 
               again.

                                     DANTE
                         Sanford?  Dante... I can't play 
                         today... I'm stuck at work... I know 
                         I'm not scheduled, but-just forget 
                         it. I can't play... Neither can 
                         Randal... He's working too...

               RANDAL comes back. DANTE rolls his eyes to the ceiling.

                                     DANTE
                              (getting an idea)
                         Wait a second. Do we have to play at 
                         the park?... Hold on...
                              (to RANDAL)
                         Do you feel limber?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               TAPE is rolled around the top of a stick. Laces are pulled 
               tightly. An orange ball is slapped back and forth by a blade.  
               The HOCKEY PLAYERS fill the convenience store. Some sit on 
               the floor or lean against the coolers, but all are either 
               preparing or practicing. RANDAL enters, wearing his equipment.

               DANTE skates to his side.

                                     DANTE
                              (lifting his foot)
                         Pull my laces tighter.

                                     RANDAL
                              (drops mitt and pulls 
                              laces)
                         I've gotta tell you, my friend: this 
                         is one of the ballsiest moves I've 
                         ever been privy to. I never would 
                         have thought you capable of such 
                         blatant disregard of store policy.

                                     DANTE
                         I told him I had a game today. It's 
                         his own fault.

                                     RANDAL
                         No argument here. Insubordination 
                         rules.

                                     DANTE
                         I just want to play hockey like I 
                         was scheduled to.

               SANFORD skates up and skids to a halt.

                                     SANFORD
                         Dante, let me grab a Gatorade.

                                     DANTE
                         If you grab a Gatorade, then 
                         everybody's going to grab one.

                                     SANFORD
                         So?

                                     DANTE
                         So? So nobody's going to want to pay 
                         for these Gatorades.

                                     SANFORD
                         What do you care? Hey, what smells 
                         like shoe polish?

                                     DANTE
                         I've got a responsibility here. I 
                         can't let everybody grab free drinks.

                                     SANFORD
                         What responsibility? You're closing 
                         the fucking store to play hockey.

                                     RANDAL
                         He's blunt, but he's got a point.

                                     DANTE
                         At least let me maintain some 
                         semblance of managerial control here.

                                     SANFORD
                         All I'm saying is if you're going to 
                         be insubordinate, you should go the 
                         full nine and not pussy out when it 
                         comes to free refreshments.

                                     RANDAL
                         He's right. As if we're suddenly 
                         gonna have a run on Gatorade.

                                     SANFORD
                         Fuckin-A.

                                     DANTE
                         All right. Jesus, you fuckers are 
                         pushy.

                                     SANFORD
                         Hey man, I hear Caitlin's marrying 
                         an Asian drum major.

                                     RANDAL
                         Design major.

                                     DANTE
                         Can we not talk about this?

                                     SANFORD
                         Fine by me. But you're living in 
                         denial and suppressing rage.
                              (skating away; to all)
                         Dante said we can all drink free 
                         Gatorade.

               A laid-back hurrah is heard.

                                     RANDAL
                         Are you gonna lock the store?

                                     DANTE
                         I don't know. You going to lock the 
                         video store?

                                     RANDAL
                         Look who you're asking here. How're 
                         we gonna block off the street?

                                     DANTE
                         We're not playing in the street.

                                     RANDAL
                         Then where're we gonna play?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               THE SIGN ON THE DOOR READS: TEMPORARILY CLOSED. BE OPEN AFTER 
               FIRST PERIOD.

               The PLAYERS ascend a ladder adjacent to the door, one by 
               one.  ON THE ROOF they jump off the ladder and skate around. 
               More players join them.

               From across the street we get the full, odd perspective: a 
               store with many men gliding around on the roof.

               On the roof DANTE skates and passes with another player.

               REDDING stretches, leaning against the sign. RANDAL pulls 
               his mask on and slaps his glove, urging a shot. SANFORD skates 
               in and takes a shot, which RANDAL blocks. JAY and SILENT BOB 
               deal to a player: he drops money over the ledge and JAY throws 
               up a dime bag. DANTE holds a ball in the center of the court.

                                     DANTE
                         Ready?

               PLAYERS take positions. SANFORD comes to the center and holds 
               the ball in drop position. DANTE and REDDING face off, and 
               the ball is in play.

               The game begins as the players engage in a savage ballet.

               Faces are smashed with sticks, slide tackles are made, shots 
               are taken, CU's of various players included.

               INACTIVE PLAYERS call out encouragement and slander from the 
               sidelines. More game playing including both goalies getting 
               scored on and more face-offs.

               Below, a CUSTOMER tugs on the convenience store door. He 
               reads the sign and then backs up into the street, attempting 
               to peer over the ledge. Above, the game continues.

               Below, the CUSTOMER shifts from one foot to the other 
               impatiently. He grabs the ladder and quickly ascends.

               Above, from over the ledge of the roof, we see the head of 
               the customer peek. Skating feet pass rapidly before him, and 
               he watches for a moment before calling out.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         When's this period over?

                                     SOMEONE (O.S.)
                         Eight more minutes!

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Are you shitting me? I want to get 
                         cigarettes!

               DANTE skids to the sidelines.

                                     DANTE
                              (out of breath)
                         If you can just wait a few more 
                         minutes.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Fuck that! I'm gonna break my crazy 
                         neck on this ladder!

                                     SOMEONE (O.S.)
                         Dante! Where are you?!

                                     CUSTOMER
                         He's busy!

               DANTE starts to skate away.

                                     DANTE
                         I'll be right back. It's almost over.

               He jumps back into the game.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         What the fuck is this?! I want some 
                         service!

                                     DANTE (O.S.)
                         In a second!

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Fuck in a second! This is... Look at 
                         you! You can't even pass!

                                     DANTE (O.S.)
                         I can pass!

                                     CUSTOMER
                         How 'bout covering point!? You suck!

               DANTE skids back to the sidelines to address the CUSTOMER.

                                     DANTE
                         Who are you to make assessments?

                                     CUSTOMER
                         I'll assess all I want!

                                     SOMEONE (O.S.)
                         DANTE! ARE YOU IN OR OUT!

                                     CUSTOMER
                              (to O.C. SOMEONE)
                         Don't pass to this guy! He sucks!
                              (to DANTE)
                         You suck!

                                     DANTE
                         Like you're better!

                                     CUSTOMER
                         I can whip your ass.

               Below, a WOMAN pulls at the door. She peers into the store, 
               face against the glass.

                                     DANTE (O.S.)
                         That's easy to say from over here.

                                     CUSTOMER (O.S.)
                         Give me a stick, pretty boy! I'll 
                         knock your fucking teeth out and 
                         pass all over your ass.

               The WOMAN backs up and, shielding her eyes, looks toward the 
               roof.

                                     WOMAN
                         Is the convenience store open?

               Above, DANTE and the CUSTOMER shout down at the O.C. WOMAN.

                                     DANTE AND CUSTOMER
                              (simultaneously)
                         NO!

                                     DANTE
                              (to CUSTOMER)
                         There's a stick over there. You're 
                         shooting against the goal.
                              (to the court)
                         REDDING! COME OFF AND LET THIS FUCK 
                         ON!

               A new face-off pits DANTE against the CUSTOMER. The ball 
               drops between the two and DANTE gets flattened. The CUSTOMER 
               winds up and takes a hard shot. The ball sails off the court, 
               through the air, and into a faraway yard. DANTE calls to the 
               sidelines.

                                     DANTE
                         Give me another ball.

                                     SOMEONE (O.S.)
                         There are no more.

                                     DANTE
                         What the fuck are you talking about?
                         How many balls did you bring?

               SANFORD skates up to him.

                                     SANFORD
                              (counting)
                         There was the orange ball... and the 
                         orange ball.

               DANTE scrambles to the edge and calls over.

                                     DANTE
                         Are there any balls down there?!

                                     JAY (O.S.)
                         'Bout the biggest pair you ever seen! 
                         NYNNE!!

               DANTE looks around, hyperventilating.

                                     DANTE
                         You only brought one ball?!

                                     SANFORD
                         I thought Redding had like three 
                         balls!

                                     REDDING (O.S.)
                         I thought Dante had the balls.

                                     DANTE
                         Nobody has another ball?

                                     SANFORD
                         Shit!

                                     DANTE
                         We get... what... twelve minutes of 
                         game, and it's over? Fuck! Fuck!
                         Fuck! Fuck!!
                              (pause; rubs head)
                         I'm not even supposed to be here 
                         today!

               DANTE skates off.

                                     SANFORD
                         We still get free Gatorade, right?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               DANTE standing on a ladder, replaces a fluorescent light. An 
               OLD MAN joins him at the foot of the ladder.

                                     OLD MAN
                         Be careful.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm trying.

                                     OLD MAN
                         You know the insides of those are 
                         filled with stuff that gives you 
                         cancer.

                                     DANTE
                         So I'm told.

                                     OLD MAN
                         I had a friend that used to chew 
                         glass for a living. In the circus.

               The light in place, DANTE descends the ladder and closes it.

                                     DANTE
                         And he got cancer by chewing 
                         fluorescent bulb glass...?

                                     OLD MAN
                         No, he got hit by a bus.

                                     DANTE
                              (confused)
                         Oh... Can I help you?

                                     OLD MAN
                         Well, that depends. Do you have a 
                         bathroom?

                                     DANTE
                         Um... yeah, but it's for employees 
                         only.

                                     OLD MAN
                         I understand, but can I use it. I'm 
                         not that young anymore, so I'm kind 
                         of... you know... incontinent.

                                     DANTE
                         Uh... sure. Go ahead. It's back 
                         through the cooler.

                                     OLD MAN
                         Thanks son. Say-what kind of toilet 
                         paper you got back there?

                                     DANTE
                         The white kind.

                                     OLD MAN
                         I'm not asking about the color. I 
                         mean is it rough or cottony?

                                     DANTE
                         Actually, it is kind of rough.

                                     OLD MAN
                         Rough, eh? Oh, that stuff rips hell 
                         out of my hemorrhoids. Say, would 
                         you mind if I took a roll of the 
                         soft stuff back there. I see you 
                         sell the soft stuff.

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah, but...

                                     OLD MAN
                         Aw, c'mon boy. What's the difference?
                         You said yourself the stuff that's 
                         there now is rough.

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah, okay. Go ahead.

                                     OLD MAN
                         Thanks son, you're a lifesaver.

               The OLD MAN walks off. DANTE heads back to the counter. The 
               OLD MAN returns.

                                     OLD MAN
                         Say, young fella, you know I hate to 
                         bother you again, but can I take a 
                         paper or something back there... to 
                         read?  It usually takes me a while, 
                         and I like to read while it's going 
                         on.

                                     DANTE
                         Jesus... go ahead.

                                     OLD MAN
                         Thanks, young man. You've got a heart 
                         of gold.

               The OLD MAN sifts through some papers and a few magazines.  
               He comes back to the counter.

                                     DANTE
                         You know, you probably could've been 
                         home, already, in the time it's taken 
                         you to get in there.

                                     OLD MAN
                         Can I trouble you for one of those 
                         magazines?

                                     DANTE
                         I said go ahead.

                                     OLD MAN
                         No, I mean the ones there. Behind 
                         the counter.

               DANTE glances over and reacts.

                                     DANTE
                         The porno mags?

                                     OLD MAN
                         Yeah. I like the cartoons. They make 
                         me laugh. They draw the biggest 
                         titties.

                                     DANTE
                              (hands one to him)
                         Here. Now leave me alone.

                                     OLD MAN
                         Uh, can I have the other one. The 
                         one below this one. They show more 
                         in that one.

               DANTE makes the switch.

                                     OLD MAN
                         Thanks son. I appreciate this.

               The OLD MAN walks off. We hear the back door open and close, 
               then the front door does the same. RANDAL joins DANTE.

                                     RANDAL
                         Helluva game!

                                     DANTE
                         One ball!! They come all the way 
                         here... I close the damn store... 
                         for one ball!

                                     RANDAL
                         Hockey's hockey. At least we got to 
                         play.

                                     DANTE
                         Randal, twelve minutes is not a game! 
                         Jesus, it's barely a warm-up!

                                     RANDAL
                         Bitch, bitch, bitch. You want 
                         something to drink?
                              (walking away)

                                     DANTE
                         Gatorade.

               Pause. Then...

                                     RANDAL (O.S.)
                         What happened to all the Gatorade?

                                     DANTE
                         Exactly. They drank it all.

                                     RANDAL (O.S.)
                         After an exhausting game like that I 
                         can believe it.

                                     DANTE
                              (as RANDAL)
                         "It's not like we're gonna sell out."

               RANDAL comes back with drinks.

                                     RANDAL
                         You know what Sanford told me?
                              (offering drink)

                                     DANTE
                         I still can't believe Caitlin's 
                         getting married.

                                     RANDAL
                         Julie Dwyer died.

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah, right.

                                     RANDAL
                         No, I'm serious.

               DANTE is visibly taken aback.

                                     DANTE
                         Oh, my god.

                                     RANDAL
                         Sanford's brother dates her cousin.
                         He found out this morning.

                                     DANTE
                         How? When?

                                     RANDAL
                         Embolism in her brain. Yesterday.

                                     DANTE
                         Jesus.

                                     RANDAL
                         She was swimming at the YMCA pool 
                         when it happened. Died mid-backstroke.

                                     DANTE
                         I haven't seen her in almost two 
                         years.

                                     RANDAL
                         Correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't 
                         she one of the illustrious twelve?

                                     DANTE
                         Number six.

                                     RANDAL
                         You've had sex with a dead person.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm gonna go to her wake.

                                     RANDAL
                         No, you're not.

                                     DANTE
                         Why not?

                                     RANDAL
                         It's today.

                                     DANTE
                         What!?

                                     RANDAL
                         Paulsen's Funeral Parlor. The next 
                         show is at four.

                                     DANTE
                         Shit. What about tomorrow?

                                     RANDAL
                         One night only. She's buried in the 
                         morning.

                                     DANTE
                         You've gotta watch the store. I have 
                         to go to this.

                                     RANDAL
                         Wait, wait, wait. Has it occurred to 
                         you that I might bereaved as well?

                                     DANTE
                         You hardly knew her!

                                     RANDAL
                         True, but do you know how many people 
                         are going to be there? All of our 
                         old classmates, to say the least.

                                     DANTE
                         Stop it. This is beneath even you.

                                     RANDAL
                         I'm not missing what's probably going 
                         to be the social event of the season.

                                     DANTE
                         You hate people.

                                     RANDAL
                         But I love gatherings. Isn't it 
                         ironic?

                                     DANTE
                         Don't be an asshole. Somebody has to 
                         stay with the store.

                                     RANDAL
                         If you go, I go.

                                     DANTE
                         She meant nothing to you!

                                     RANDAL
                         She meant nothing to you either until 
                         I told you she died.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm not taking you to this funeral.

                                     RANDAL
                         I'm going with you.

                                     DANTE
                         I can't close the store.

                                     RANDAL
                         You just closed the store to play 
                         hockey on the roof!

                                     DANTE
                         Exactly, which means I can't close 
                         it for another hour so we can both 
                         go to a wake.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT CAR: DAY

               DANTE drives with passenger RANDAL, their backs to the camera.

                                     RANDAL
                         You were saying?

                                     DANTE
                         Thanks for putting me in a tough 
                         spot. You're a good friend.

               Silence. Then...

                                     RANDAL
                         She was pretty young, hunhh?

                                     DANTE
                         Twenty-two; same as us.

                                     RANDAL
                         An embolism in a pool.

                                     DANTE
                         An embarrassing way to die.

                                     RANDAL
                         That's nothing compared to how my 
                         cousin Walter died.

                                     DANTE
                         How'd he die?

                                     RANDAL
                         Broke his neck.

                                     DANTE
                         That's embarrassing?

                                     RANDAL
                         He broke his neck trying to suck his 
                         own dick.

               Absolute silence. Then...

                                     DANTE
                         Shut the hell up.

                                     RANDAL
                         Bible truth.

                                     DANTE
                         Stop it.

                                     RANDAL
                         I swear.

                                     DANTE
                         Oh, my god.

                                     RANDAL
                         Come on. Haven't you ever tried to 
                         suck your own dick?

                                     DANTE
                         No!

                                     RANDAL
                         Yeah sure. You're so repressed.

                                     DANTE
                         Because I never tried to suck my own 
                         dick?

                                     RANDAL
                         No, because you won't admit to it.
                         As if a guy's a fucking pervert 
                         because he tries to go down on 
                         himself. You're as curious as the 
                         rest of us, pal. You've tried it.

                                     DANTE
                         Who found him?

                                     RANDAL
                         My cousin? My aunt found him. On his 
                         bed, doubled over himself with his 
                         legs on top. Dick in his mouth.
                         My aunt freaked out. It was a mess.

                                     DANTE
                         His dick was in his mouth?

                                     RANDAL
                         Balls resting on his lips.

                                     DANTE
                         He made it, hunhh?

                                     RANDAL
                         Yeah, but at what a price.

               Silence. Then...

                                     DANTE
                         I could never reach.

                                     RANDAL
                         Reach what?

                                     DANTE
                         You know.

                                     RANDAL
                         What, your dick?

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah. Like you said, you know. I 
                         guess everyone tries it, sooner of 
                         later.

                                     RANDAL
                         I never tried it.

               DANTE glares at RANDAL. Silence. Then...

                                     RANDAL
                         Fucking pervert.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: FUNERAL PARLOR. DAY

               DANTE and RANDAL walk up the path to the funeral parlor.

                                     DANTE
                         I know it was a bad idea to close 
                         the store.

                                     RANDAL
                         Listen to you.

                                     DANTE
                         I can't help it. At least when we 
                         were playing hockey outside, I could 
                         see if anyone wanted to go in.

                                     RANDAL
                         Nobody's there. It's four o'clock on 
                         a Saturday. How many people ever 
                         come to the store at four on a 
                         Saturday?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               A MASSIVE CROWD is outside the store.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: FUNERAL PARLOR. DAY

               DANTE and RANDAL run from the front door, closely chased by 
               a small crowd of angry mourners. Car locks are slammed down.  
               The car screams away. The pursuing crowd stands in the middle 
               of the street, shaking their fists, throwing things.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. NIGHT

               The car pulls up and RANDAL and DANTE get out. Absolutely 
               nobody is outside.

                                     DANTE
                              (furious)
                         I can't fucking believe you!!

                                     RANDAL
                         I'm telling you, it wasn't my fault!

                                     DANTE
                         You knocked the fucking casket over, 
                         for Chrissakes!

                                     RANDAL
                         I was just leaning on it! It was an 
                         accident!

                                     DANTE
                         Does anyone ever knock over a casket 
                         on purpose?

                                     RANDAL
                         So the casket fell over! Big deal!

                                     DANTE
                         Her fucking body fell out!

                                     RANDAL
                         So they'll put her back in! It's not 
                         like it's gonna matter if she breaks 
                         something!

                                     DANTE
                              (opening door)
                         Just... go! Go open the video store.

                                     JAY (O.S.)
                              (mimicking)
                         Yeah! Open the video store!!

                                     RANDAL
                              (to O.C.)
                         Shut the fuck up, junkie!

               JAY enters the frame, right next to RANDAL. He aims his butt 
               at him and farts. RANDAL lunges for him. DANTE grabs RANDAL.

                                     DANTE
                              (to RANDAL)
                         Go open the video store.

                                     JAY
                         Yeah, you cock-smoking clerk.

                                     DANTE
                              (to JAY)
                         How many times I gotta tell you not 
                         to deal outside the store.

                                     JAY
                         I'm not dealing.

               A KID tugs at JAY'S shirt.

                                     KID
                         You got anything, man?

                                     JAY
                         Yeah, what do you want?

               RANDAL heads to the video store. DANTE enters the convenience 
               store and slides the sign to OPEN. After a few seconds, the 
               IMPATIENT CUSTOMER (guy who lost his keys) appears, flashlight 
               in hand, scanning the ground.

                                     IMPATIENT CUSTOMER
                              (to JAY)
                         Hey, did you see a set of keys lying 
                         around here somewhere?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. NIGHT

               DANTE rearranges the milk. RANDAL joins him.

                                     RANDAL
                         Let me borrow your car.

                                     DANTE
                         I don't want to talk to you.

                                     RANDAL
                         Fine. Just lend me your car.

                                     DANTE
                         Why should I loan you my car?

                                     RANDAL
                         I want to rent a movie.

                                     DANTE
                              (pause)
                         You want to rent a movie.

               DANTE walks away, shaking his head.

                                     RANDAL
                         What's that for?

                                     DANTE
                         You work in a video store!

               They head back to the counter.

                                     RANDAL
                         I work in a shitty video store. I 
                         want to go to a good video store so 
                         I can rent a good movie.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Are you open?

                                     DANTE AND RANDAL
                              (simultaneously)
                         YES!

               The CUSTOMER comes to the counter.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Pack of cigarettes.
                              (pets cat)
                         Cute cat. What's its name?

                                     RANDAL
                         Annoying Customer.

               The CUSTOMER lets it sink in, and then leaves in a huff.  
               DANTE puts up cigarettes.

                                     DANTE
                         Can you imagine being halfway decent 
                         to the customers at least some of 
                         the time?

                                     RANDAL
                         Let me borrow your car.

                                     DANTE
                              (calmer)
                         May I be blunt with you?

                                     RANDAL
                         If you must.

                                     DANTE
                         We are employees of Quick Stop 
                         Convenience and RST video, 
                         respectively. As such, we have
                         certain responsibilities which-though 
                         it may seem cruel and unusual-does 
                         include manning our posts until 
                         closing.

                                     RANDAL
                         I see. So playing hockey and attending 
                         wakes-these practices are standard 
                         operating procedure.

                                     DANTE
                         There's a difference. Those were 
                         obligations. Obligations that could 
                         not have been met at any later date.
                         Now renting videos-that's just 
                         gratuitous, not to mention illogical, 
                         considering you work in a video store.

               Another CUSTOMER leans in.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Are you open?

                                     DANTE
                              (rolls his eyes)
                         Yes.

                                     RANDAL
                         You know what? I don't think I care 
                         for your rationale.

                                     DANTE
                         It's going to have to do for now, 
                         considering that it's my car that's 
                         up for request.
                              (to CUSTOMER)
                         Can I help you?

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Pack of cigarettes.

                                     RANDAL
                         What's your point?

                                     DANTE
                         My point is that you're a clerk, 
                         paid to do a job. You can't just do 
                         anything you want while you're 
                         working.

                                     CUSTOMER
                              (reading tabloid)
                         "Space Alien Revealed as Head of 
                         Time Warner; Reports Stock Increase."
                              (to DANTE and RANDAL)
                         They print any kind of shit in these 
                         papers.

                                     DANTE
                         They certainly do. Two fifty-five.

                                     RANDAL
                         So your argument is that title 
                         dictates behavior?

                                     DANTE
                         What?

                                     RANDAL
                         The reasons you won't let me borrow 
                         your car is because I have a title 
                         and a job description, and I'm 
                         supposed to follow it, right?

                                     DANTE
                         Exactly.

                                     CUSTOMER
                              (interjecting)
                         I saw one, one time, that said the 
                         world was ending the next week.  
                         Then in the next week's paper, they 
                         said we were miraculously saved at 
                         the zero hour by a Koala-fish mutant 
                         bird. Crazy shit.

                                     RANDAL
                              (eyes the CUSTOMER, 
                              annoyed)
                         So I'm no more responsible for my 
                         own decisions while I'm here at work 
                         than, say, the Death Squad soldiers 
                         in Bosnia?

                                     DANTE
                         That's stretching it. You're not 
                         being asked to slay children or 
                         anything.

                                     RANDAL
                         Not yet.
                              (sips water)

                                     CUSTOMER
                              (again with the 
                              interjections)
                         And I remember this one time the 
                         damn paper said...

               RANDAL spits a mist of water at the customer, drenching him.  
               The man reacts violently, attempting to grab RANDAL from 
               over the counter. RANDAL makes no move, but remains untouched.

               DANTE plays block.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         I'M GONNA BREAK YOUR FUCKING HEAD!
                         YOU FUCKING JERKOFF!

                                     DANTE
                         Sir! Sir, I'm sorry! He didn't mean 
                         it! He was trying to get me.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Well, he missed!

                                     DANTE
                         I know. I'm sorry. Let me refund 
                         your cigarette money, and we'll call 
                         it even.

                                     CUSTOMER
                              (considerably calmer; 
                              takes money)
                         This is the last time I ever come 
                         here.
                              (to RANDAL)
                         And if I ever see you again, I'm 
                         gonna break your fucking head open!

               The CUSTOMER leaves, wiping water from his face. RANDAL 
               salutes him.

                                     DANTE
                              (angrily)
                         What the fuck did you do that for?

                                     RANDAL
                         Two reasons: one, I hate when the 
                         people can't shut up about the stupid 
                         tabloid headlines.

                                     DANTE
                         Jesus!

                                     RANDAL
                         And two, to make a point: title does 
                         not dictate behavior.

                                     DANTE
                         What?

                                     RANDAL
                         If title dictated my behavior, as a 
                         clerk serving the public, I wouldn't 
                         be allowed to spit a mouthful of 
                         water at that guy. But I did, so my 
                         point is that people dictate their 
                         own behavior. Hence, even though I'm 
                         a clerk in this video store, I choose 
                         to go rent videos at Big Choice.
                              (extends opened palm)
                         Agreed?

                                     DANTE
                              (shakes his head; 
                              hands over keys)
                         You're a danger to both the dead and 
                         the living.

                                     RANDAL
                         I like to think I'm a master of my 
                         own destiny.

                                     DANTE
                         Please, get the hell out of here.

                                     RANDAL
                         I know I'm your hero.

               RANDAL exits.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. DAY

               DANTE waits on a customer (TRAINER). He lifts the gallon of 
               milk into a paper bag, letting out a slight grunt.

                                     TRAINER
                         Sounds to me like somebody needs to 
                         hit the gym.

                                     DANTE
                         Excuse me?

                                     TRAINER
                         I heard you strain when you put the 
                         milk in the bag. That milk only weighs 
                         about seven pounds.

                                     DANTE
                         I didn't strain. I sighed.

                                     TRAINER
                         I don't think so. That was a grunt; 
                         a deep inhalation of oxygen to aid 
                         in the stretching of muscles. I'm a 
                         trainer. I know what that sound 
                         signifies: you're out of shape.

                                     DANTE
                         I don't think so.

                                     TRAINER
                         Oh, I do. You made the same noise 
                         when you reached across the counter 
                         for my cash. Your muscles are thin 
                         and sadly underutilized.

                                     DANTE
                         They are not.

                                     TRAINER
                         Yes, they are. You're out of shape.

                                     DANTE
                         What are you talking about? There's 
                         no fat on this body.

                                     TRAINER
                         No fat, but no tone either. You don't 
                         get enough exercise.

               A female customer (HEATHER) leans in the doorway.

                                     HEATHER
                         Are you open?

                                     DANTE
                         Yes.

                                     HEATHER
                              (grabs a paper)
                         Just the paper.

                                     DANTE
                              (to HEATHER)
                         Thirty-fire.

                                     TRAINER
                              (to HEATHER)
                         Let me ask you a question: Do you 
                         think this guy's out of shape?

                                     HEATHER
                              (studies DANTE)
                         I don't know. I can't really tell 
                         from here.

                                     TRAINER
                         He is.

                                     DANTE
                         I am not.

                                     TRAINER
                         How much can you bench?

                                     DANTE
                         I don't know.

                                     HEATHER
                              (studying DANTE)
                         I'd say about sixty, seventy-tops.

                                     DANTE
                         I know I can bench more than that!

                                     TRAINER
                         I think the lady called it.

                                     HEATHER
                         My ex-boyfriend was about his height, 
                         but he was much bulkier. He could 
                         bench two-fifty, three hundred easy.

                                     TRAINER
                         I do about three-fifty, four.

                                     HEATHER
                         No way!

                                     TRAINER
                              (rolling up sleeve)
                         Feel that.

                                     HEATHER
                         That's tight. Solid.

                                     TRAINER
                         Now feel his.
                              (to DANTE)
                         Roll up your sleeve, chief.

                                     DANTE
                         Oh for God's sake!

                                     TRAINER
                         See? You're ashamed. You know you're 
                         out of shape. Take my card.  I can 
                         help you tone that body up in no 
                         time. Get you on an aerobics and 
                         free-weights program.

               A SUITED MAN carrying a notebook comes to the counter.

                                     SUITED MAN
                         You open?

                                     DANTE
                              (to MAN)
                         Yes.
                              (to TRAINER)
                         I'm not out of shape.

                                     SUITED MAN
                         Excuse me, but have you been here 
                         all day?

                                     DANTE
                         What?

                                     HEATHER
                              (still studying DANTE)
                         He's got those love handles.

                                     DANTE
                              (to HEATHER)
                         I don't have love handles.

                                     SUITED MAN
                         Were you working here at about four 
                         o'clock?

                                     DANTE
                         I've been here since six o'clock 
                         this morning. Why?

                                     TRAINER
                              (to HEATHER)
                         It's probably from being around all 
                         this food every day.

                                     HEATHER
                         Oh, I know. If I had to work here 
                         all day, I'd be bloated and out of 
                         shape, too.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm not out of shape!

                                     SUITED MAN
                         Can I have your name please?

                                     DANTE
                         Dante Hicks. Why? What is this about?

               The SUITED MAN scribbles in his notebook.

                                     HEATHER
                         You're Dante Hicks? Oh my God! I 
                         didn't even recognize you!

                                     TRAINER
                         Because he's out of shape.

                                     DANTE
                         Do I know you?

                                     HEATHER
                         You remember Alyssa Jones? She hung 
                         out with...

                                     DANTE
                         Caitlin Bree. Yeah?

                                     HEATHER
                         I'm her sister.

                                     DANTE
                         You're Alyssa's sister? Heather?

                                     HEATHER
                         Yep. I remember you got caught in my 
                         parents' room with Caitlin once.

                                     TRAINER
                         Did you say Caitlin Bree?

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah.

                                     TRAINER
                         Pretty girl, about this girl's height-
                         dark hair-gorgeous body?

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah?

                                     TRAINER
                         And your name is Dante Hicks? You 
                         went to high school with her? You 
                         played hockey?

                                     DANTE
                         How do you know that?

                                     TRAINER
                         Oh man! Hey, you still going out 
                         with her?

                                     DANTE
                         No, she's getting married.

                                     TRAINER
                         To you?

                                     HEATHER
                         To an Asian design major.

                                     TRAINER
                         Shit!
                              (to DANTE)
                         Don't take this the wrong way, but I 
                         used to fuck her.

                                     DANTE
                         What?

                                     TRAINER
                         While you two were dating in high 
                         school. We're talking four, five 
                         years ago, back when I drove a Trans-
                         Am.

                                     HEATHER
                         Oh my God! You're Rick Derris?

                                     TRAINER
                         Yeah!

                                     DANTE
                         You know him?

                                     HEATHER
                         Caitlin used to talk about him all 
                         the time.

                                     TRAINER
                         Really?

                                     HEATHER
                         Oh yeah. You were the built older 
                         guy with the black Trans and the 
                         big...

                                     DANTE
                         Wait a second!
                              (to TRAINER)
                         You used to sleep with Caitlin Bree?
                         While I was dating her?

                                     TRAINER
                         All the time. That girl was like a 
                         rabbit.

                                     DANTE
                         I... I don't believe this...

                                     HEATHER
                              (to TRAINER)
                         I still remember Caitlin telling us 
                         about that time you two went to that 
                         motel-the one with the mirrors and 
                         the hot tub in the room.

                                     DANTE
                         THE GLADES MOTEL?

                                     TRAINER
                         Holy shit! She told you about that!
                              (to DANTE)
                         Buddy of mine worked there. Said he 
                         watched the whole thing. They used 
                         to film people at that hotel; nobody 
                         knew about it.

                                     HEATHER
                         She said one time you set up a tent 
                         on the beach and you guys did it in 
                         the middle of this big rainstorm.

                                     DANTE
                         What? When? When did all this shit 
                         happen?

                                     TRAINER
                         Hey man, that was a long time ago.
                         Don't let it get to you.

                                     HEATHER
                         I'm surprised you never found out 
                         about it, Dante. Everybody in school 
                         knew-even in my class.

                                     DANTE
                         Jesus Christ, what next?

               The SUITED MAN rips a piece of paper out of his notebook and 
               hands it to DANTE.

                                     SUITED MAN
                         Here you go.

                                     DANTE
                         What's this?

                                     SUITED MAN
                         A fine, for five hundred dollars.

                                     DANTE
                         WHAT?

                                     TRAINER
                         Five hundred bucks? What for?

                                     SUITED MAN
                         For violation of New Jersey Statute 
                         Section Two A, number one-seventy 
                         slash fifty-one: Any person who sells 
                         or makes available tobacco or tobacco-
                         related products to persons under 
                         the age of eighteen is regarded as 
                         disorderly.

                                     DANTE
                         What are you talking about?

                                     SUITED MAN
                         According to the NJAC-the New Jersey 
                         Administrative Code, section eighteen, 
                         five, slash twelve point five-a fine 
                         of no less than two hundred and fifty 
                         dollars is to be leveled against any 
                         person reported selling cigarettes 
                         to a minor.

                                     DANTE
                         I didn't do that!

                                     SUITED MAN
                         You said you were here all day?

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah, but I didn't sell cigarettes 
                         to any kids!

                                     SUITED MAN
                         An angry mother called the state 
                         division of taxation and complained 
                         that the man working at Quick Stop 
                         Convenience sold her five-year-old 
                         daughter cigarettes today at around 
                         four o'clock. Division of taxation 
                         calls the State Board of Health, and 
                         they send me down here to issue a 
                         fine. You say you were working all 
                         day, hence the fine is yours.  It's 
                         doubled due to the incredibly young 
                         age of the child.

                                     DANTE
                         But I didn't sell cigarettes to any 
                         kid!

                                     TRAINER
                         To a five-year-old kid? What a 
                         scumbag!

                                     HEATHER
                         That's sick, Dante.

                                     DANTE
                         I didn't sell cigarettes to any kids! 
                         I swear!

                                     SUITED MAN
                         The due date is on the bottom. This 
                         summons cannot be contested in any 
                         court of law. Failure to remit before 
                         the due date will result in a charge 
                         of criminal negligence, and a warrant 
                         will be issued for your arrest. Have 
                         a nice day.

               The SUITED MAN exits, with DANTE trying to follow.

                                     DANTE
                         But I didn't sell cigarettes to any 
                         kids! Hey!

                                     TRAINER
                              (takes back the card)
                         Forget it. I don't want to deal with 
                         a guy that sells cigarettes to a 
                         five-year-old.
                              (to HEATHER)
                         Can I offer you a ride somewhere?

                                     HEATHER
                         Sure. How about the beach?

                                     TRAINER
                         I like the way you think.

               The two exit. DANTE, alone, studies his summons. He rubs his 
               forehead.

                                     DANTE
                         Jesus! What next?

                                     VOICE (O.S.)
                         Dante?

               DANTE spins, angrily.

                                     DANTE
                         What?

               His expression softens.

                                     DANTE
                         Caitlin?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: VIDEO STORE. NIGHT

               JAY deals with a customer as SILENT BOB looks on.

                                     JAY
                         That's the price, my brother.

                                     JOHN
                         Yo, I don't have that kind of cash.

                                     JAY
                         For this kind of hash, you need that 
                         kind of cash.

                                     JOHN
                         How long you gonna be here?

                                     JAY
                         Till ten. Then I'm going to John K's 
                         party.

                                     JOHN
                         You're gonna be at John K's party?

                                     JAY
                              (to SILENT BOB)
                         My man is deaf.
                              (yelling)
                         I'M GOING TO JOHN K'S PARTY!
                              (quieter)
                         Neh.

                                     JOHN
                         Yo, don't sell all that. 'Cause I'm 
                         gonna get the cash and buy it from 
                         you at John K's. You're gonna bring 
                         it, right?

                                     JAY
                         The only place I don't bring my drugs 
                         is church. And that ain't till Sunday 
                         morning.

                                     JOHN
                         Yo. I'll see you at that party.
                              (puts his hand up to 
                              be slapped)
                         I'll see you there?

                                     JAY
                              (reluctantly slapping 
                              hands)
                         I'll see you there.

               JOHN leaves. JAY turns to SILENT BOB.

                                     JAY
                         It's motherfuckers like that who 
                         give recreational drug users a bag 
                         name.
                              (suddenly spotting 
                              someone O.C.)
                         HEY BABY!  YOU EVER HAD YOUR ASSHOLE 
                         LICKED?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. NIGHT

               DANTE and CAITLIN are embracing very tightly. We hold on 
               them for a few seconds, just to let it sink in. Then...

                                     DANTE
                         When did you get back?

                                     CAITLIN
                         Just now.

                                     DANTE
                         My God. I haven't seen you since...
                              (he hugs her again)

                                     CAITLIN
                         Dante. You've got a customer.

               DANTE hops behind the counter. A customer pays for something 
               while DANTE continues to talk.

                                     CAITLIN
                         I just saw Alyssa's little sister 
                         outside. She was with Rick Derris.

                                     DANTE
                         Let's not talk about that. How'd you 
                         get home?

                                     CAITLIN
                         Train. It took eight hours.

                                     DANTE
                         I can't believe you're here.

               Another customer comes to the counter.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Excuse me, do you have...

                                     DANTE
                              (to CUSTOMER)
                         To the back, above the oil.
                              (to CAITLIN)
                         How long are you staying?

                                     CAITLIN
                         Until Monday. Then I have to take 
                         the train back.

               Yet another customer comes to the counter.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Pack of cigarettes.
                              (to CAITLIN)
                         Congratulations. I saw that 
                         announcement in today's paper.
                              (to DANTE)
                         She's marrying an Asian design major.

                                     DANTE
                         So I'm told.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: VIDEO STORE. NIGHT

               JAY and SILENT BOB lean against the wall.

                                     JAY
                         Man, it's fucking slow.

               SILENT BOB walks out of the frame, leaving JAY alone against 
               the wall. He comes back a few seconds later, carrying a mini-
               Walkman with ten-watt speakers. He sets it down on the ground 
               and turns it on. House music starts playing. Jay-possessed 
               by the beat-breaks into an impromptu dance, in which he makes 
               suggestive and often lewd moves. SILENT BOB leans against 
               the wall.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: VIDEO STORE. NIGHT

               On counter.

                                     CAITLIN
                         You're just going to lock the store 
                         like that?

                                     DANTE
                         I want to talk to you about something, 
                         and I don't want to be disturbed.

                                     CAITLIN
                         You saw it?

                                     DANTE
                         Very dramatic, I thought.

                                     CAITLIN
                         It's not what you think.

                                     DANTE
                         What, it's worse? You're pregnant 
                         with an Asian design major's child?

                                     CAITLIN
                         I'm not pregnant.

                                     DANTE
                         Were you going to tell me or just 
                         send me an invitation?

                                     CAITLIN
                         I was going to tell you. But then we 
                         were getting along so well, I didn't 
                         want to mess it up.

                                     DANTE
                         You could've broke it to me gently, 
                         you know; at least started by telling 
                         me you had a boyfriend. I told you I 
                         have a girlfriend.

                                     CAITLIN
                         I know, I'm sorry. But when we started 
                         talking... it's like I forgot I had 
                         a boyfriend. And then he proposed 
                         last month...

                                     DANTE
                         And you said yes?

                                     CAITLIN
                         Well... kind of, sort of?

                                     DANTE
                         Is that what they teach you at that 
                         school of yours? Kind of, sort of?
                         Everyone knows about this except me!
                         Do you know how humiliating that is?

                                     CAITLIN
                         I would've told you, and you would 
                         have stopped calling, like a baby.

                                     DANTE
                         How do you know that?

                                     CAITLIN
                         Because I know you. You prefer drastic 
                         measures to rational ones.

                                     DANTE
                         So you're really getting married?

                                     CAITLIN
                         No.

                                     DANTE
                         No, you're not really getting married?

                                     CAITLIN
                         The story goes like this: He proposed, 
                         and I told him I had to think about 
                         it, and he insisted I wear the ring 
                         anyway. Then my mother told the paper 
                         we were engaged.

                                     DANTE
                         How like her.

                                     CAITLIN
                         Then my mother called me this morning 
                         and told me the announcement was in 
                         the paper. That's when I hopped the 
                         train to come back here, because I 
                         knew you'd be a wreck.

                                     DANTE
                         Thanks for the vote of confidence.

                                     CAITLIN
                         Was I right?

                                     DANTE
                         Wreck is a harsh term. Disturbed is 
                         more like it. Mildly disturbed even.

                                     CAITLIN
                         I love a macho fašade. It's such a 
                         turn-on.
                              (sniffing air)
                         What smells like shoe polish?

                                     DANTE
                         And you came here to what? To comfort 
                         me?

                                     CAITLIN
                         The last thing I needed was for you 
                         to think I was hiding something from 
                         you.

                                     DANTE
                         But you were.

                                     CAITLIN
                         No, I wasn't. Not really. I told 
                         you'd I'd been seeing other people.

                                     DANTE
                         Yeah, but not seriously. Christ, 
                         you're ready to walk down the aisle-
                         I'd say that constitutes something 
                         more than just seeing somebody.

                                     CAITLIN
                         I'm giving him his ring back.

                                     DANTE
                         What?

                                     CAITLIN
                         I don't want to marry him. I don't 
                         want to get married now. I'm on the 
                         verge of graduation. I want to go to 
                         grad school after this. And then I 
                         want to start a career. I don't want 
                         to be a wife first, and then have to 
                         worry about when I'm going to fit in 
                         all of the other stuff.  I've come 
                         way too far and studied too hard to 
                         let my education go to waste as a 
                         housewife. And I know that's what 
                         I'd become. Sang's already signed 
                         with a major firm, and he's going to 
                         be pulling a huge salary, which would 
                         give me no reason to work, and he's 
                         so traditional anyway...

                                     DANTE
                         Sang? His name is a past tense?

                                     CAITLIN
                         Stop it. He's a nice guy.

                                     DANTE
                         If he's so nice, why aren't you going 
                         to marry him?

                                     CAITLIN
                         I just told you.

                                     DANTE
                         There's more, isn't there?

                                     CAITLIN
                         Why, Mr. Hicks-whatever do you mean?

                                     DANTE
                         Tell me I don't have something to do 
                         with it.

                                     CAITLIN
                         You don't have anything to do with 
                         it.

                                     DANTE
                         You lie.

                                     CAITLIN
                         Look how full of yourself you are.

                                     DANTE
                         I just believe in giving credit where 
                         credit is due. And I believe that 
                         I'm the impetus behind your failure 
                         to wed.

                                     CAITLIN
                         If I'm so nuts about you, then why 
                         am I having sex with an Asian design 
                         major?

                                     DANTE
                         Jesus, you're caustic.

                                     CAITLIN
                         I had to bring you down from that 
                         cloud you were floating on. When I 
                         say I don't want to get married, I 
                         mean just that. I don't want to marry 
                         anybody. Not for years.

                                     DANTE
                         So who's asking? I don't want to 
                         marry you.

                                     CAITLIN
                         Good. Stay in that frame of mind.

                                     DANTE
                         But can we date?

                                     CAITLIN
                         I'm sure Sang and-Veronica?-would 
                         like that.

                                     DANTE
                         We could introduce them. They might 
                         hit it off.

                                     CAITLIN
                         You're serious. You want to date 
                         again.

                                     DANTE
                         I would like to be your boyfriend, 
                         yes.

                                     CAITLIN
                         It's just the shock of seeing me 
                         after three years. Believe me, you'll 
                         get over it.

                                     DANTE
                         Give me a bit more credit. I think 
                         it's time we got back together, you 
                         know. I'm more mature, you're more 
                         mature, you're finishing college, 
                         I'm already in the job market...

                                     CAITLIN
                         You work in a market, all right.

                                     DANTE
                         Cute. Tell me you wouldn't want to 
                         go out again. After all the talking 
                         we've been doing.

                                     CAITLIN
                         The key word here is talk, Dante. I 
                         think the idea, the conception of us 
                         dating is more idyllic than what 
                         actually happens when we date.

                                     DANTE
                         So... what? So we should just make 
                         pretend over the phone that we're 
                         dating?

                                     CAITLIN
                         I don't know. Maybe we should just 
                         see what happens.

                                     DANTE
                         Let me take you out tonight.

                                     CAITLIN
                         You mean, on a date?

                                     DANTE
                         Yes. A real date. Dinner and a movie.

                                     CAITLIN
                         The Dante Hicks Dinner and a Movie 
                         Date. I think I've been on that one 
                         before.

                                     DANTE
                         You have a better suggestion?

                                     CAITLIN
                         How about the Caitlin Bree Walk on 
                         the Boardwalk, Then Get Naked 
                         Somewhere Kind of Private Date?

                                     DANTE
                         I hear that's a rather popular date.

                                     CAITLIN
                              (hits him)
                         Jerk. Here I am, throwing myself at 
                         you, succumbing to your wily charms, 
                         and you call me a slut, in so many 
                         words.

                                     DANTE
                         What about Sing?

                                     CAITLIN
                         Sang.

                                     DANTE
                         Sang.

                                     CAITLIN
                         He's not invited.

                                     DANTE
                         He's your fiancÚ.

                                     CAITLIN
                         I offer you my body and you offer me 
                         semantics? He's just a boyfriend, 
                         Dante, and in case you haven't gotten 
                         the drift of why I came all the way 
                         here from Ohio, I'm about to become 
                         single again.  And yes-let me placate 
                         your ego-you are the inspiration for 
                         this bold and momentous decision, 
                         for which I'll probably be ostracized 
                         at both school and home. You ask me 
                         who I choose, I choose you.

                                     DANTE
                         So what are you saying?

                                     CAITLIN
                         You're such an asshole.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm just kidding.

                                     CAITLIN
                         I can already tell this isn't going 
                         to work.

                                     DANTE
                         I'll ask Randal to close up for me 
                         when he gets back.

                                     CAITLIN
                         Where'd he go?  I'd have thought 
                         he'd be at your side, like an obedient 
                         lapdog.

                                     DANTE
                         He went to rent a movie, but he hasn't 
                         gotten back yet. Ah, screw it; I'll 
                         just lock the store up and leave him 
                         a note.

                                     CAITLIN
                         You're too responsible. But no. I 
                         have to go home first. They don't 
                         even know I left school. And I should 
                         break the disengagement news to my 
                         mother, which is going to cause quite 
                         a row, considering she loves Sang.

                                     DANTE
                         Who doesn't?

                                     CAITLIN
                         Well, me I guess.
                              (gathering herself to 
                              go)
                         So, I shall take my leave of you, 
                         but I will return in a little while, 
                         at which time-yes-I would love to go 
                         for dinner and a movie with you.

                                     DANTE
                         What happened to the walk and the 
                         nakedness?

                                     CAITLIN
                         I'm easy, but I'm not that easy.
                              (she kisses his cheek)
                         See you later, handsome.

               DANTE watches her leave. He then explodes in jubilance.

                                     DANTE
                         YES!

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. NIGHT

               DANTE looks ahead, dreamily, half-spinning in his chair.  
               RANDAL enters carrying videos.

                                     RANDAL
                         Get to work.

                                     DANTE
                              (takes videos)
                         What'd you rent?
                              (reads)
                         Best of Both Worlds?

                                     RANDAL
                         Hermaphroditic porn. Starlets with 
                         both organs. You should see the box: 
                         Beautiful women with dicks that put 
                         mine to shame.

                                     DANTE
                         And this is what you rented?

                                     RANDAL
                         I like to expand my horizons.

                                     DANTE
                         I got fined for selling cigarettes 
                         to a minor.

                                     RANDAL
                         No way!

                                     DANTE
                         Five hundred dollars.

                                     RANDAL
                         You're bullshitting.

               DANTE hands him the summons. RANDAL reads it.

                                     RANDAL
                         I didn't think they even enforced 
                         this.

                                     DANTE
                              (points to himself)
                         Living proof.

                                     RANDAL
                         I thought you never sold cigarettes 
                         to kids.

                                     DANTE
                         I don't; you did.

                                     RANDAL
                              (pause)
                         Really?

                                     DANTE
                         Little girl. Maybe five years old?

                                     RANDAL
                              (taken aback)
                         Holy shit. That girl?

                                     DANTE
                         As opposed to the hundreds of other 
                         children you let buy cigarettes 
                         whenever you work here.

                                     RANDAL
                         Then how come you got the fine?

                                     DANTE
                         Because I'm here.

                                     RANDAL
                              (incredulous)
                         You're lying.

                                     DANTE
                         I swear. I couldn't make this kind 
                         of hell up.

                                     RANDAL
                         Then why aren't you like screaming 
                         at me right now?

                                     DANTE
                         Because I'm happy.

                                     RANDAL
                         You're happy?

                                     DANTE
                         I'm happy.

                                     RANDAL
                         You're happy to get a fine?

                                     DANTE
                         No. I'm happy because Caitlin came 
                         to see me.

                                     RANDAL
                         Now I know you're lying.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm not. She just left.

                                     RANDAL
                         What did she say?

                                     DANTE
                         She's not going to marry that guy.
                         She went home to tell her mother.

                                     RANDAL
                         You're kidding.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm not.

                                     RANDAL
                              (takes it in for a 
                              moment)
                         Wow. You've had quite an evening.

                                     DANTE
                         She went home, she's getting ready, 
                         and we're going out.

                                     RANDAL
                         I feel so ineffectual. Is there 
                         anything I can do for you?

                                     DANTE
                         Watch the store while I go home and 
                         change.

                                     RANDAL
                         What happened to title dictates 
                         behavior?

                                     DANTE
                         This is my way of spitting water at 
                         life.

                                     RANDAL
                              (suddenly aware)
                         Hey, what about Veronica?

                                     DANTE
                         No! Don't bring it up. I don't want 
                         to think about that now. Let me enjoy 
                         this hour of bliss. I'll think about 
                         all of that later. In the meantime, 
                         nobody mentions the V word.

                                     RANDAL
                         You're a snake.

                                     DANTE
                         In my absence, try not to sell 
                         cigarettes to any newborns.

                                     RANDAL
                         You want me to bring the VCR over 
                         here so we can watch this?

                                     DANTE
                         I might be leaving early to go out 
                         with Caitlin, in which case you'll 
                         have to close the store tonight.

                                     RANDAL
                         All right, but you're missing out.
                         Chicks with dicks.

                                     DANTE
                              (puts cats on counter)
                         I'll read the book.

               DANTE exits. A CUSTOMER comes back to the counter. He pets 
               the cat.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Cute cat. What's his name.

                                     RANDAL
                         Peptic ulcer.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. NIGHT

               JAY and SILENT BOB watch as DANTE passes. A small group of 
               burners are poised around the store door. JAY carefully writes 
               on a large piece of paper, using a thick marker.  SILENT BOB 
               hands him the scissors. JAY slowly cuts the large piece of 
               paper. SILENT BOB hands him the tape. JAY snaps off a few 
               pieces, and plasters the sign to the convenience store door. 
               It is a large word balloon, and it reads I EAT COCK!

               Once in place, he raps on the window. RANDAL looks out, his 
               face adjacent to the word balloon, making it appear as if he 
               is saying he eats cock. The small group laughs hysterically.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. NIGHT

               CAITLIN enters, carrying an overnight bag. RANDAL is watching 
               his porno. The porno is loud and lewd. CAITLIN stares.

                                     CAITLIN
                         Randal Graves-scourge of the video 
                         renter.

                                     RANDAL
                         Ladies and gentleman, Mrs. Asian 
                         Design Major herself: Caitlin Bree!

                                     CAITLIN
                         You saw that article? God, isn't it 
                         awful? My mother sent that in.

                                     RANDAL
                         I take it she likes the guy.

                                     CAITLIN
                         You'd think she was marrying him.
                         What are you watching?

                                     RANDAL
                         Children's programming. What did 
                         your mom say when you told her you 
                         weren't engaged anymore?

                                     CAITLIN
                         She said not to come home until 
                         graduation.

                                     RANDAL
                         Wow, you got thrown out? For Dante?

                                     CAITLIN
                         What can I say? He does weird things 
                         to me.

                                     RANDAL
                         Can I watch?

                                     CAITLIN
                         You can hold me down.

                                     RANDAL
                         Can I join in?

                                     CAITLIN
                         You might be let down. I'm not a 
                         hermaphrodite.

                                     RANDAL
                         Few are. So what makes you think you 
                         can maintain a relationship with 
                         Dante this time around?

                                     CAITLIN
                         A woman's intuition. Something in me 
                         says it's time to give the old boy a 
                         serious try.

                                     RANDAL
                         Wow. Hey, I was just about to order 
                         some dinner. You eat Chinese, right?

                                     CAITLIN
                         Dick.

                                     RANDAL
                         Exactly.

                                     CAITLIN
                         So where is he?

                                     RANDAL
                         He went home to change for the big 
                         date.

                                     CAITLIN
                         God, isn't he great?

                                     RANDAL
                              (indicating TV)
                         No, this is great.

                                     CAITLIN
                         Can I use the bathroom?

                                     RANDAL
                         There's no light back there.

                                     CAITLIN
                         Why aren't there any lights?

                                     RANDAL
                         Well, there are, but for some reason 
                         they stop working at five-fourteen 
                         every night.

                                     CAITLIN
                         You're kidding.

                                     RANDAL
                         Nobody can figure it out. And the 
                         boss doesn't want to pay the 
                         electrician to fix it, because the 
                         electrician owes money to the video 
                         store.

                                     CAITLIN
                         Such a sordid state of affair.

                                     RANDAL
                         And I'm caught in the middle-torn 
                         between my loyalty for the boss, and 
                         my desire to piss with the light on.

                                     CAITLIN
                         I'll try to manage.

               She heads toward the back.

                                     RANDAL
                         Hey Caitlin...
                              (cautionary)
                         Break his heart again this time, and 
                         I'll kill you. Nothing personal.

                                     CAITLIN
                         You're very protective of him, Randal. 
                         You always have been.

                                     RANDAL
                         Territoriality. He was mine first.

                                     CAITLIN
                              (rubs his head)
                         Awww. That was so cute.

               She kisses his forehead and walks away. The MOTHER and SMALL 
               CHILD (Happy Scrappy) come to the counter.

                                     MOTHER
                              (oblivious of the TV)
                         A pack of cigarettes.

               The SMALL CHILD points at the TV screen.

                                     SMALL CHILD
                         Cunt!

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: CONVENIENCE STORE. NIGHT

               RANDAL studies the I EAT COCK word balloon. DANTE enters.

                                     DANTE
                         Who eats cock?

                                     RANDAL
                         Bunch of savages in this town.
                              (recalling)
                         Hey, Caitlin's in the back. You might 
                         want to see if she's okay; she's 
                         been back there a long time.

                                     DANTE
                         There's no lights back there.

                                     RANDAL
                         I told her that. She said she didn't 
                         need any. Why don't you join her, 
                         man. Make a little bathroom bam-bam.

                                     DANTE
                         I love your sexy talk. It's so... 
                         kindergarten: Poo-poo; wee-wee.

                                     RANDAL
                         Fuck you.

               The cooler door is heard opening. CAITLIN walks lazily down 
               the convenience store aisle. She looks very satisfied. DANTE 
               and RANDAL regard her curiously. She joins them, latching on 
               to DANTE's arm, lovingly.

                                     CAITLIN
                         How'd you get here so fast?

                                     DANTE
                         I left like an hour ago.

                                     CAITLIN
                              (regards him curiously)
                         Do you always talk weird after you 
                         violate women?

               RANDAL and DANTE stare at CAITLIN, confused.

                                     RANDAL
                         Maybe the Asian design major slipped 
                         her some opium?

                                     DANTE
                         Could be.

                                     CAITLIN
                              (hugging DANTE)
                         Promise me it'll always be like that.

                                     DANTE
                         Like what?

                                     CAITLIN
                         When you just lie perfectly still 
                         and let me do everything.

                                     DANTE
                         Um... okay.

                                     RANDAL
                         Am I missing something here?

                                     CAITLIN
                         I went back there, and Dante was 
                         already waiting for me.

                                     RANDAL
                         He was?

                                     CAITLIN
                         It was so cool. He didn't say a word. 
                         He was just... ready, you know?  And 
                         we didn't kiss or talk or anything. 
                         He just sat there and let me do all 
                         the work.

                                     RANDAL
                              (to DANTE)
                         You dog! I didn't see you go back 
                         there.

               DANTE is bewildered.

                                     CAITLIN
                         And the fact that there weren't any 
                         lights made it so...
                              (she lets out a growl 
                              and hugs DANTE)
                         God! That was so great!

                                     DANTE
                              (quietly)
                         It wasn't me.

                                     CAITLIN
                              (laughing it off)
                         Yeah, right. Who was it: Randal?

                                     DANTE
                              (to RANDAL)
                         Was it you?

                                     RANDAL
                         I was here the whole time.

                                     CAITLIN
                              (half-laughing)
                         You two better quit it.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm serious.

                                     CAITLIN
                              (beat)
                         We didn't just have sex in the 
                         bathroom?

                                     DANTE
                         No.

               Everyone is silent. Then...

                                     CAITLIN
                         Stop this. This isn't funny.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm not kidding. I just got back 
                         from outside.

                                     CAITLIN
                              (covering her chest)
                         This isn't fucking funny, Dante!

                                     DANTE
                         I'm not fooling around!
                              (to RANDAL)
                         Who went back there?

                                     RANDAL
                         Nobody! I swear!

                                     CAITLIN
                         I feel nauseous.

                                     DANTE
                         Are you sure somebody was back there?

                                     CAITLIN
                              (hits DANTE)
                         I didn't just fuck myself! Jesus, 
                         I'm going to be sick!

                                     RANDAL
                         You just fucked a total stranger?

                                     DANTE
                         Shut the fuck up!

                                     CAITLIN
                         I can't believe this! I feel faint...

                                     DANTE
                              (to RANDAL)
                         Call the police.

                                     RANDAL
                         Why?

                                     CAITLIN
                         No, don't!

                                     DANTE
                         There's a strange man in our bathroom, 
                         and he just raped Caitlin!

                                     CAITLIN
                              (weakly)
                         Oh God...

                                     RANDAL
                         She said she did all the work.

                                     DANTE
                         WOULD YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP?
                              (pause)
                         WHO THE FUCK IS IN THE BATHROOM?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. LATER

               THE OLD MAN'S FACE is serene, almost happy, as he lies on a 
               stretcher. (Same OLD MAN who took a porn mag to the bathroom.)

                                     CORONER (O.S.)
                         Who is he?

               The body bag zipper is pulled closed. DANTE, the CORONER, 
               and RANDAL stand around the stretcher-bound body bag. The 
               CORONER takes notes.

                                     DANTE
                         I don't know. He just came in and 
                         asked to use the bathroom.

                                     CORONER
                         What time was this?

                                     DANTE
                         Um... I don't know.
                              (to RANDAL)
                         What time did hockey end?

                                     RANDAL
                         Around three or something.

                                     DANTE
                         What time did we go to the funeral?

                                     RANDAL
                         I think four.

                                     CORONER
                         Wait a second? Who was working here 
                         today?

                                     DANTE
                         Just me.

                                     CORONER
                         I thought you just said you played 
                         hockey and went to a funeral.

                                     DANTE
                         We did.

                                     CORONER
                         Then who operated the store?

                                     DANTE
                         Nobody. It was closed.

                                     CORONER
                         With this guy locked in?

                                     DANTE
                         Everything happened at once. I guess 
                         I forgot he was back there.

               Ambulance attendants join them.

                                     ATTENDANT 1
                         Can we take this now?

                                     CORONER
                         Go ahead.

               The stretcher is wheeled out. Midway down the body bag, 
               something protrudes, pushing the bag up. It is an erection.  
               RANDAL stares at it.

                                     DANTE
                         Was he alive when... Caitlin...

                                     CORONER
                         No. I place the time of death at 
                         about three-twenty.

                                     RANDAL
                         Then how could she... you know...

                                     CORONER
                         The body can maintain an erection 
                         after expiration. Sometimes for hours. 
                         Did he have the adult magazine when 
                         he came in?

                                     DANTE
                         No. I gave it to him.

               RANDAL and the CORONER stare in disbelief.

                                     DANTE
                         Well he asked me for it!

                                     CORONER
                              (continuing)
                         I can't say for certain until we get 
                         him back to the lab, but my guess is 
                         he was masturbating, his heart seized 
                         and he died. That's when the girl 
                         found him.
                              (sniffing the air)
                         Something smells like shoe polish.

                                     RANDAL
                              (to CORONER)
                         This has gotta be the weirdest thing 
                         you've ever been called in on.

                                     CORONER
                              (writing)
                         Actually, I once had to tag a kid 
                         that broke his neck trying to put 
                         his mouth on his penis.

               RANDAL looks down, anonymously.

                                     DANTE
                         What about Caitlin?

                                     CORONER
                         Shock trauma. She's going to need 
                         years of therapy after this. My 
                         question is, How did she come to 
                         have sex with the dead man?

                                     DANTE
                         She thought it was me.

               The CORONER stares at DANTE.

                                     CORONER
                         What kind of convenience store do 
                         you run here?

               He exits. DANTE and RANDAL stare at the floor.

                                     RANDAL
                              (beat)
                         Do you think he was talking about my 
                         cousin?

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: VIDEO STORE. NIGHT

               CAITLIN sits in the back of the ambulance, a blanket draped 
               over her shoulders. An attendant takes her blood pressure.  
               The doors are closed and the vehicle speeds away. JAY and 
               SILENT BOB lean against the wall. JAY eats sugar out of a 
               box.

                                     JAY
                         I knew one of those motherfuckers 
                         was gonna kill somebody one day.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. NIGHT

               A jar of salsa is invaded by a large corn chip. Once in the 
               condiment, the corn chip resembles a surfacing shark fin.

               Fingers poke at it, bringing it to life-swimming menacingly 
               to and fro across the jar.

                                     RANDAL (O.S.)
                              (mumbling Jaws theme)
                         Da-dum! Da-dum! Da-dum! DA-DUM!  DA-
                         DUM! DA-DUM!

               DANTE and RANDAL are on a freezer case. RANDAL pushes this 
               chip around the jar of salsa. DANTE stares up at the ceiling, 
               oblivious.

                                     RANDAL
                         Salsa shark.

               DANTE says nothing.

                                     RANDAL
                              (as Brody)
                         "We're gonna need a bigger boat."

               DANTE says even less than nothing.

                                     RANDAL
                              (as Quint)
                         "Man goes into the cage; cage goes 
                         into the salsa; shark's in the salsa; 
                         our shark."

               DANTE... you know.

                                     RANDAL
                              (angry)
                         What? What's with you? You haven't 
                         said anything for like twenty minutes. 
                         What the hell is your problem?

                                     DANTE
                         This life.

                                     RANDAL
                         This life?

                                     DANTE
                         Why do I have this life?

                                     RANDAL
                         Have some chips; you'll feel better.

                                     DANTE
                         I'm stuck in this pit, earning less 
                         than slave wages, working on my day 
                         off, dealing with every backward 
                         fuck on the planet, the goddamn steel 
                         shutters are locked all day, I smell 
                         like shoe polish, I've got an ex-
                         girlfriend who's catatonic after 
                         fucking a dead guy, and my present 
                         girlfriend has sucked thirty-six 
                         dicks.

                                     RANDAL
                         Thirty-seven.

                                     DANTE
                         My life is in the shitter right about 
                         now, so if you don't mind, I'd like 
                         to stew a bit.

                                     CUSTOMER (O.S.)
                         You open?

                                     RANDAL
                         Yeah.

               RANDAL hops off the freezer case and steps O.C.

                                     RANDAL (O.S.)
                         That's all bullshit. You know what 
                         the real problem here is?

                                     DANTE
                         I was born.

               RANDAL comes back.

                                     RANDAL
                         You should shit or get off the pot.

                                     DANTE
                         I should shit or get off the pot.

                                     RANDAL
                         Yeah, you should shit or get off the 
                         pot.

                                     DANTE
                         What are you talking about?

                                     RANDAL
                         I'm talking about this thing you 
                         have... this inability to improve 
                         your situation in life.

                                     DANTE
                         Fuck you.

                                     RANDAL
                         It's true. You'll sit there and blame 
                         life for dealing a cruddy hand, never 
                         once accepting the responsibility 
                         for the way your situation is.

                                     DANTE
                         What responsibility?

                                     RANDAL
                         All right, if you hate this job and 
                         the people, and the fact that you 
                         have to come in on your day off, 
                         then quit.

                                     DANTE
                         As if it's that easy.

                                     RANDAL
                         It is. You just up and quit. There 
                         are other jobs, and they pay better 
                         money. You're bound to be qualified 
                         for at least one of them. So what's 
                         stopping you?

                                     DANTE
                         Leave me alone.

                                     RANDAL
                         You're comfortable. This is a life 
                         of convenience for you, and any 
                         attempt to change it would shatter 
                         the pathetic microcosm you've 
                         fashioned for yourself.

                                     DANTE
                         Oh, like your life's any better?

                                     RANDAL
                         I'm satisfied with my situation for 
                         now. You don't hear me bitching.  
                         You, on the other hand, have been 
                         bitching all day.

                                     DANTE
                         Thank you. Why don't you go back to 
                         the video store?

                                     RANDAL
                         It's the same thing with Veronica.

                                     DANTE
                         Leave her out of this.

                                     RANDAL
                         You date Veronica because she's low 
                         maintenance and because it's 
                         convenient. Meanwhile, all you ever 
                         do is talk about Caitlin. You carry 
                         a torch for a girl you dated in high 
                         school-in high school for God's sake! 
                         You're twenty-two!

                                     DANTE
                         Leave me alone.

                                     RANDAL
                         If you want Caitlin, then face 
                         Veronica, tell her, and be with 
                         Caitlin. If you want Veronica, be 
                         with Veronica. But don't pine for 
                         one and fuck the other. Man, if you 
                         weren't such a fucking coward...

                                     DANTE
                         ...If I wasn't such a fucking coward.
                              (chuckles)
                         It must be so great to be able to 
                         simplify everything the way you do.

                                     RANDAL
                         Am I right or what?

                                     DANTE
                         You're wrong. Things happened today, 
                         okay? Things that probably ruined my 
                         chances with Caitlin.

                                     RANDAL
                         What? The dead guy?  She'll get over 
                         fucking the dead guy. Shit, my mom's 
                         been fucking a dead guy for thirty 
                         years; I call him Dad.

                                     DANTE
                         Caitlin and I can't be together.  
                         It's impossible.

                                     RANDAL
                         Melodrama coming from you seems about 
                         as natural as an oral bowel movement.

                                     DANTE
                         What do you want me to say? Yes, I 
                         suppose some of the things you're 
                         saying may be true. But that's the 
                         way things are; it's not going to 
                         change.

                                     RANDAL
                         Make them change.

                                     DANTE
                         I can't, all right! Jesus, would you 
                         leave me alone? I can't make changes 
                         like that in my life. If I could, I 
                         would-but I don't have the ability 
                         to risk comfortable situations on 
                         the big money and the fabulous prizes.

                                     RANDAL
                         Who're you kidding? You can so.

                                     DANTE
                         Jesus H. Christ, I can't!

                                     RANDAL
                         So you'll continue being miserable 
                         all the time, just because you don't 
                         have the guts to face change?

                                     DANTE
                              (sadly)
                         My mother told me once that when I 
                         as three, my potty lid was closed, 
                         and instead of lifting it, I chose 
                         to shit my pants.

                                     RANDAL
                         Lovely story.

                                     DANTE
                         Point is-I'm not the kind of person 
                         that disrupts things in order to 
                         shit comfortably.

               DANTE crosses O.C. RANDAL appears contemplative.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. NIGHT

               DANTE repairs ripped dollar bills, taping them back together.  
               JAY enters with SILENT BOB and claps his hands.

                                     JAY
                              (singing)
                         Noinch, noinch, noinch-smoking weed, 
                         smoking weed! Doing coke!  Drinking 
                         beers!
                              (to DANTE)
                         A pack of wraps, my good man. It's 
                         time to kick back, drink some beers, 
                         and smoke some weed!

                                     DANTE
                         Done poisoning the youth for the 
                         day?

                                     JAY
                         Hell yes, whatever that means. Now 
                         I'm gonna head over to Atlantic,
                         drink some beers, get ripped, and- 
                         please God-get laid.
                              (pulls out money)
                         E-Z Wider, one-and-a-halfs.

                                     DANTE
                         One seventy-nine.

                                     JAY
                              (to SILENT BOB)
                         Pay the good man.
                              (to DANTE)
                         Don't you close soon?

                                     DANTE
                         A half hour.

                                     JAY
                         We get off about the same time every 
                         night. We should hang out.  You get 
                         high?

                                     DANTE
                         I should start.

                                     JAY
                         Wanna come to this party tonight?
                         There's gonna be some pussy there, 
                         man!

                                     DANTE
                         With you? I don't think so.

                                     JAY
                         Listen to you. Oh shit. "Oh, I don't 
                         hang out with drug dealers."

                                     DANTE
                         Nothing personal.

               SILENT BOB hands weed to JAY.

                                     JAY
                         I work, just like you. You're more 
                         of a crook than I am, dude.

                                     DANTE
                         How do you figure... HEY! You can't 
                         roll a joint in here!

                                     JAY
                              (rolling a joint)
                         Relax brother. What I mean is that 
                         you sell the stuff in this store at 
                         the highest prices around. A dollar 
                         seventy-nine for wraps-what's that 
                         shit?

                                     DANTE
                         It's not my store.

                                     JAY
                         And these aren't my drugs-I just 
                         sell them.

                                     DANTE
                         The difference is you exploit a 
                         weakness.

                                     JAY
                         What's that mean?

                                     DANTE
                         You sell to people that can't stay 
                         away from an addiction.

                                     JAY
                         All right. How much is Pepsi here?

                                     DANTE
                         A dollar sixty-nine, plus tax.

                                     JAY
                         At Food City it's ninety-nine cents, 
                         plus tax.

                                     DANTE
                         So.

                                     JAY
                         So why do you sell it for so much 
                         more? I'll tell you why-because people 
                         come here and they're like "A dollar 
                         eighty for soda? I should get it at 
                         Food City. But I don't feel like 
                         driving there. I'll just buy it here 
                         so I don't have to drive up there." 
                         That's exploiting a weakness, too, 
                         isn't it?

                                     DANTE
                         I can't believe you just rolled a 
                         joint in here.

                                     JAY
                         Hey, man, what happened with that 
                         old guy?

                                     DANTE
                         He died in the bathroom.

                                     JAY
                         That's fucked up. Yo, I heard he was 
                         jerkin' off.

                                     DANTE
                         I don't know. I wasn't watching.

                                     JAY
                         Probably saw that Caitlin chick. I 
                         know I felt like beatin' it when I 
                         saw her.
                              (pantomimes sex)
                         Come here, bitch! You like this? Is 
                         this what you want? Hunhh?

                                     DANTE
                         Knock it off. That used to be my 
                         girlfriend.

                                     JAY
                         You used to go out with her?

                                     DANTE
                         We were going to start again, I think.

                                     JAY
                         Don't you already have a girlfriend?

                                     DANTE
                         Veronica.

                                     JAY
                         Is she that girl who's down here all 
                         the time? She came here today carrying 
                         a plate of food.

                                     DANTE
                         Lasagne.

                                     JAY
                         And what-you were gonna dump her to 
                         date that Caitlin chick?

                                     DANTE
                         Maybe.

                                     JAY
                         I don't know dude. That Caitlin 
                         chick's nice. But I see that Veronica 
                         girl doing shit for you all the time. 
                         She brings you food, she rubs your 
                         back... Didn't I see her change your 
                         tire one day?

                                     DANTE
                         I jacked the car up. All she did was 
                         loosen the nuts and put the tire on.

                                     JAY
                         Damn. She sure goes out of her way.

                                     DANTE
                         She's my girlfriend.

                                     JAY
                         I've had girlfriends, but all they 
                         wanted from me was weed and shit.
                              (beat)
                         Shit, my grandma used to say, "Which 
                         is better: a good plate with nothing 
                         on it..." No, wait. I fucked up. She 
                         said "What's a good-looking plate 
                         with nothing on it?"

                                     DANTE
                         Meaning?

                                     JAY
                         I don't know. She was senile and 
                         shit. Used to piss herself all the 
                         time. C'mon Silent Bob.

               Exit JAY. SILENT BOB stands there.

                                     SILENT BOB
                         You know, there's a million fine-
                         looking women in the world, but they 
                         don't all bring you lasagne at work. 
                         Most of them just cheat on you.

               SILENT BOB leaves. DANTE shuts his eyes tightly and rubs the 
               bridge of his nose with his thumb and forefinger, as if in 
               deep concentration. He suddenly snaps his eyes open.

                                     DANTE
                              (nearly surprised)
                         He's right. I love her.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: VIDEO STORE. NIGHT

               RANDAL has a heart-to-heart with VERONICA.

                                     RANDAL
                         So that's it. He doesn't love you 
                         anymore. He loves Caitlin.

               VERONICA stares, dumbfounded.

                                     VERONICA
                         And... he told you all of this?

                                     RANDAL
                         Pretty much. All except the latent 
                         homosexuality part-that's just my 
                         theory.

                                     VERONICA
                         I... I don't know what to say.

                                     RANDAL
                         Don't hold it against him. He just 
                         never got Caitlin out of his system.
                         It's not your fault. It's Dante.
                              (beat)
                         I don't know thing one about chicks.
                         Do you want to cry or something? I 
                         can leave.

                                     VERONICA
                         I'm not sad.

                                     RANDAL
                         You're not?

                                     VERONICA
                         No, I'm more furious. I'm pissed 
                         off. I feel like he's been killing 
                         time while he tries to grow the balls 
                         to tell me how he really feels, and 
                         then he can't even do it!  He has 
                         his friend do it for him!

                                     RANDAL
                         He didn't ask me to...

                                     VERONICA
                         After all that I've done for that 
                         fuck! And he wants to be with that 
                         slut? Fine! He can have his slut!

                                     RANDAL
                         Um, do you think you can give me a 
                         lift home tonight?

                                     VERONICA
                              (oblivious of RANDAL)
                         I'm going to have a word with that 
                         asshole.

               VERONICA storms out.

                                     RANDAL
                         Wait!  Veronica... I don't think...

               RANDAL stares after her. A customer stands nearby.

                                     RANDAL
                              (to customer)
                         What am I worried about?  He'll 
                         probably be glad I started the ball 
                         rolling. All he ever did was complain 
                         about her anyway. I'm just looking 
                         out for his best interests.  I mean, 
                         that's what a friend does, am I right? 
                         I did him a favor.

                                     CUSTOMER
                              (sees box on counter)
                         Oooh! Navy Seals!

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. NIGHT

               DANTE is on the ground holding his knee. VERONICA stands 
               above him.

                                     DANTE
                         What the fuck did you do that for?

                                     VERONICA
                         If you didn't want to go out with me 
                         anymore, why didn't you just say it? 
                         Instead, you pussyfoot around and 
                         see that slut behind my back!

                                     DANTE
                         What're you talking about?

                                     VERONICA
                              (kicks him)
                         You've been talking to her on the 
                         phone for weeks!

                                     DANTE
                         It was only a few times...

                                     VERONICA
                         And then you pull that shit this 
                         morning, freaking out because I've 
                         gone down on a couple guys!

                                     DANTE
                         A couple...?

                                     VERONICA
                              (throws purse at him)
                         I'm not the one trying to patch things 
                         up with my ex, sneaking around behind 
                         your back! And if you think that 
                         thirty-seven dicks are a lot, then 
                         just wait, mister: I'm going to put 
                         the hookers in Times Square to shame 
                         with all the guys I go down on now!

                                     DANTE
                         Would you let me explain...

                                     VERONICA
                         Explain what? How you were waiting 
                         until the time was right, and then 
                         you were going to dump me for her?

                                     DANTE
                              (getting up)
                         Veronica... I... it's not like that 
                         anymore... I mean, it was never really 
                         like that...

               VERONICA kicks him in the other leg. DANTE goes down, yelling 
               in pain.

                                     VERONICA
                         You're damn right it's not like that! 
                         Because I won't let it be like that! 
                         You want your slut? Fine!  The slut 
                         is yours!

                                     DANTE
                         I don't want Caitlin...

                                     VERONICA
                         You don't know what you want, but 
                         I'm not going to sit here anymore 
                         holding your hand until you figure 
                         it out! I've encouraged you to get 
                         out of this fucking dump and go back 
                         to school, to take charge of your 
                         life and find direction. I even 
                         transferred so maybe you would be 
                         more inclined to go back to college 
                         if I was with you. Everyone said it 
                         was a stupid move, but I didn't care 
                         because I loved you and wanted to 
                         see you pull yourself out of this 
                         senseless funk you've been in since 
                         that whore dumped you, oh so many 
                         years ago. And now you want to go 
                         back to her so she can fuck you over 
                         some more?

                                     DANTE
                         I don't want to go back with her...

                                     VERONICA
                         Of course not; not now! You're caught, 
                         and now you're trying to snake out 
                         of doing what you wanted to do. Well, 
                         I won't let you. I want you to follow 
                         through on this, just so you can 
                         find out what a fucking idiot you 
                         are. And when she dumps you again-
                         and she will, Dante, I promise you 
                         that-when she dumps you again, I 
                         want to laugh at you, right in your 
                         face, just so you realize that that 
                         was what you gave up our relationship 
                         for!
                              (grabs her purse)
                         I'm just glad Randal had the balls 
                         to tell me, since you couldn't.

                                     DANTE
                              (weakly)
                         Randal...?

                                     VERONICA
                         And having him tell me... that was 
                         just the weakest move ever. You're 
                         spineless.

                                     DANTE
                         Veronica, I love you...

                                     VERONICA
                         Fuck you.

               VERONICA exits. DANTE lies on the floor alone.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               EXT: VIDEO STORE. NIGHT

               RANDAL exits and locks the door behind him.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               INT: CONVENIENCE STORE. NIGHT

               Tight on RANDAL'S face as he steps inside.

                                     RANDAL
                         Dante?

               Hands clasp around his throat and yank him out of the frame.  
               DANTE throttles RANDAL, choking him to the ground. RANDAL 
               throws his fists into DANTE'S midriff, throwing him back 
               into the magazine rack. RANDAL jumps to his feet as DANTE 
               comes at him again. RANDAL tumbles into the cakes as 
               Entenman's products scatter beneath and around him. He grabs 
               a pound cake and hits DANTE in the head with it, using the 
               opportunity to scurry down the middle aisle. DANTE leaps at 
               his feet, and RANDAL grabs the shelves, knocking aspirin 
               over until RANDAL-shrieking-sprays something in DANTE'S face.

               DANTE paws at his eyes. RANDAL grabs Italian bread and smacks 
               it into DANTE'S face as he rushes him blindly. DANTE chases 
               him out of the frame. M&M's scatter wildly across the empty 
               floor, and the ruckus is heard O.C.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               DANTE and RANDAL later, out of breath, on the floor. RANDAL 
               sits up against the candy rack, rubbing his neck. DANTE lies 
               on the floor, bacon held against a sort of crushed cookies, 
               ripped-open candies, broken bread, and other damaged goods.

                                     RANDAL
                         How's your eye?

                                     DANTE
                              (reluctantly)
                         The swelling's not so bad. But the 
                         FDS stings.
                              (then)
                         How's your neck?

                                     RANDAL
                         It's hard to swallow.

               They are both silent. Then...

                                     RANDAL
                         You didn't have to choke me.

                                     DANTE
                         Why the fuck did you tell Veronica 
                         that I was going to dump her for 
                         Caitlin?

                                     RANDAL
                         I thought I was doing you a favor.

                                     DANTE
                         Thanks.

                                     RANDAL
                         You were saying how you couldn't 
                         initiate change yourself, so I figured 
                         I'd help you out.

                                     DANTE
                         Jesus.

               Silence. Then...

                                     RANDAL
                         You still didn't have to choke me.

                                     DANTE
                         Oh please! I'm surprised I didn't 
                         kill you.

                                     RANDAL
                         Why do you say that?

                                     DANTE
                         Why do I say that?  Randal... forget 
                         it.

                                     RANDAL
                         No, really. What did I do that was 
                         so wrong?

                                     DANTE
                         What don't you do?  Randal, sometimes 
                         it seems like the only reason you 
                         come to work is to make my life 
                         miserable.

                                     RANDAL
                         How do you figure?

                                     DANTE
                         What time did you get to work today?

                                     RANDAL
                         Like ten after.

                                     DANTE
                         You were over half an hour late.
                         Then all you do is come over here.

                                     RANDAL
                         To talk to you.

                                     DANTE
                         Which means the video store is 
                         ostensibly closed.

                                     RANDAL
                         It's not like I'm miles away.

                                     DANTE
                         Unless you're out renting videos at 
                         other video stores.

                                     RANDAL
                         Hermaphrodites! I rented it so we 
                         could watch it together!

                                     DANTE
                         You get my slapped with a fine, you 
                         fight with the customers and I have 
                         to patch everything up. You get us 
                         chased out of a funeral by violating 
                         a corpse. To top it all off, you 
                         ruin my relationship. What's your 
                         encore? Do you anally rape my mother 
                         while pouring sugar in my gas tank?
                              (sighs)
                         You know what the real tragedy is?
                         I'm not even supposed to be here 
                         today!

                                     RANDAL
                              (suddenly outraged)
                         Fuck you. Fuck you, pal. Listen to 
                         you trying to pass the buck again.
                         I'm the source of all your misery.
                         Who closed the store to play hockey?
                         Who closed the store to attend a 
                         wake? Who tried to win back an ex-
                         girlfriend without even discussing 
                         how he felt with his present one?
                         You wanna blame somebody, blame 
                         yourself.
                              (beat, as DANTE)
                         "I'm not even supposed to be here 
                         today."
                              (whips stuff at DANTE)
                         You sound like an asshole. Whose 
                         choice was it to be here today?
                         Nobody twisted your arm. You're here 
                         today of your own violation, my 
                         friend. But you'd like to believe 
                         that the weight of the world rests 
                         on your shoulders-that the store 
                         would crumble if Dante wasn't here. 
                         Well, I got news for you, jerk: This 
                         store would survive without you. 
                         Without me either. All you do is 
                         overcompensate for having what's 
                         basically a monkey's job:
                         You push fucking buttons. Any moron 
                         can waltz in here and do our jobs, 
                         but you're obsessed with making it 
                         seem so much more fucking important, 
                         so much more epic than it really is.
                         You work in a convenience store, 
                         Dante. And badly, I might add. And I 
                         work in a shitty video store.  Badly, 
                         as well.
                              (beat)
                         You know, that guy Jay's got it right-
                         he has no delusions about what he 
                         does. Us?  We like to make ourselves 
                         seem so much better than the people 
                         that come in here, just looking to 
                         pick up a paper or-God forbid-
                         cigarettes. We look down on them, as 
                         it we're so advanced.  Well, if we're 
                         so fucking advanced, then what are 
                         we doing working here?

               RANDAL gets up, leaving DANTE to contemplate his strong words 
               alone.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               DANTE and RANDAL silently clean up, backs to each other.

                                                                    CUT TO:

               DANTE places a mop in the corner. RANDAL pulls on his coat.

                                     RANDAL
                         I threw out the stuff that got broken. 
                         The floor looks clean.

                                     DANTE
                         You need a ride?

                                     RANDAL
                              (looks out door)
                         Got one. Just pulled up.

               They stand in silence. Then...

                                     DANTE
                         Do you work tomorrow?

                                     RANDAL
                         Same time. What about you?

                                     DANTE
                         I'm calling out. Going to hit the 
                         hospital-see how Caitlin is. Then 
                         try to see Veronica.

                                     RANDAL
                         You wanna grab something to eat 
                         tomorrow night... after I get out of 
                         here?

                                     DANTE
                         I'll call you. Let you know.

                                     RANDAL
                         All right. Good luck with Veronica.
                         If you want, I can talk to her, you 
                         know, and explain...

                                     DANTE
                         No thanks. I'll take care of it.  
                         We've got a lot of shit to talk about.

                                     RANDAL
                         Helluva day.

                                     DANTE
                         To say the least.

                                     RANDAL
                         Do you need a hug or something?  
                         'Cause I would have no hang-ups about 
                         hugging you... you know, you being a 
                         guy and all. Just don't knead my ass 
                         when you do it.

                                     DANTE
                         Get the fuck outta here already.

                                     RANDAL
                         I'm gone. I'll talk to you tomorrow.

               RANDAL exits. A second later, he reenters and tosses DANTE 
               the sheet-sign.

                                     RANDAL
                         You're closed.

               He exits. DANTE pushes the sign over from Open to Closed.

               DANTE climbs behind the counter. He pops the register open 
               and starts counting the drawer out. The door is heard opening.

               POV JOHN: DANTE counting out the register, not looking up.

                                     DANTE
                         What'd you forget something?
                              (looks up, surprised)
                         Oh. I'm sorry, we're closed.

               A gunshot blasts out. DANTE flies back, his chest exploding.  
               He stares ahead and slumps to the floor.

               JOHN walks behind the counter, stepping over DANTE'S body on 
               the floor, and takes the money out of the register. He grabs 
               a paper bag and jams the money in it. He grabs handfuls of 
               change, shoves it in his pocket, and then quickly exits the 
               frame. DANTE continues to lie on the floor.

               CREDITS

               Credits end, and the door is heard opening. A customer comes 
               to the counter and stands there. He waits, looks around for 
               a clerk, looks down the aisles.

                                     CUSTOMER
                         Hello? Little help?

               No reply. He looks around again, and glances at the door to 
               make sure nobody's coming in. Then he reaches behind the 
               counter and grabs a pack of cigarettes. He leaves.