White Picket Fence with Tulips and a Dog

Diner Parking Lot.

Bordy gets in his car and drives.  Henrietta stares at him.

Henrietta: …Get the money?
Bordy: I didn’t get anything. She needs a few days.
Henrietta: What the fuck man…
Bordy: My mother isn’t an ATM, alright? She’s not gonna shoot out money at the push of a button.
Henrietta: Bullshit. She’s loaded.
Bordy: She’s not loaded. You could have went in to meet her, she saw you from the window.
Henrietta: I told you I’m not meeting parents anytime soon. God knows where this is even going.
Bordy: You don’t need to meet a parent because we’re getting married but out of some kind of decency.
Henrietta: Whatever. Few days she said?
Bordy: Yeah.
Henrietta: What are we doing for food?
Bordy: I ate.
Henrietta: What about me?
Bordy: What about you? If you would have come inside, you would have been fed.
Henrietta: Selfish asshole.
Bordy: I’ll get you something to eat, alright? Chill.
Henrietta: So she did give you money!
Bordy: She gave me a few bucks to get by but she’s working on the rest.
Henrietta: So how much did she give you?
Bordy: What’s with all the questions?
Henrietta: What’s with all the secrets?
Bordy: She gave me like a hundred.
Henrietta: That’s nothing man.
Bordy: Better than nothing, right?
Henrietta: Whatever.
Bordy: (imitating her) ‘Whatever, whatever.’ What’s that your new favorite word now?
Henrietta: Whatever, dude.
Bordy: Yeah. Never happy. That’s your new nickname, never happy.
Henrietta: And your new nickname is IDIOT.
Bordy: Whatever, never happy. Whatever.
Henrietta: Whatever, whatever, IDIOT.

(pause.)

I want to eat.
Bordy: What do you want from my life?
Henrietta: What you promised me.
Bordy: Yeah, well, life’s not that easy.
Henrietta: You promised you’d take care of me and I’m here not being taken care of. I could go back home and leave this all behind.
Bordy: You know, it’s not 1950 anymore, incase you haven’t noticed. There’s no white picket fence with tulips and a dog. That shit don’t exist anymore.
Henrietta: Yes it does.
Bordy: That window is closing down hard and fast baby doll.
Henrietta: I want my white picket fence or I’m out.
Bordy: I can only do what I can do.
Henrietta: I don’t want this shit life.
Bordy: What do you mean? With me or in general?
Henrietta: With you and in general. Sick of it. Always a struggle man.
Bordy: Work harder.
Henrietta: You got some pair.  You work harder! I’m the one holding down a job.  What do you do all day with those paintings…pathetic.  How are we gonna have a future together? Look where we are! Look at us. This is going nowhere man. This shit is no joke.
Bordy: It is, it is.
Henrietta: It is what? What the hell do you mean?  You’re going nowhere!  Achieving nothing!  Sold all your books for money, the change jar is gone…what else is there to sell?  Loserville man!  God forbid you actually sell one painting, other than the one to that old lady who took pity on you last week.  Pathetic!  I’m living in loserville with your wasted ass!
Bordy: You know, for the past week you’ve been sticking your nails in my neck, making my blood boil each and every day and I constantly ask you to calm down, to talk to me nicely, to be positive, to stop putting me down and what do you do, you keep grinding away, keep talking trash with that mouth of yours and it’s gotten me to my limit. You understand? You’ve reached my fucking limit and I’m about to drive this piece of shit fucking car right through those (pointing) cemetery gates and park us in a coffin so we can be together in hell for all eternity!  If you don’t shut up for once in your life and stop barking at me all day I’m gonna go ffffucking NUTS over here, I swear to God, I’m gonna go fucking crazy and do it. I’m gonna do it. (Bordy squeezes the steering wheel and starts shaking violently) MmmmmmmRRRRAAAAAaaaaaaa!!!  Right through the fucking gates!!!
Henrietta: Holy shit man, calm down. Take it easy alright, I didn’t know you would get this upset.
Bordy: (voice has reached a deep demonic sound) I’ve told you eighty-three million times to chill out. Haven’t I? Right? RRRRight?
Henrietta: Dude, I’m chill. Calm down, you’re scaring me.

Bordy let’s out a scream. Then another scream. He punches the steering wheel and shakes himself against it violently. He bites the steering wheel with his teeth.  He slowly begins to calm his rage and breathe.

Bordy: You know, I told you, you know. I’m a little off in the head. Spent my whole life trying to stay calm but you push me to the limit of no return. I don’t want to go there, especially with you. It’s a side to me that I don’t ever want to come out. Stop pushing me. You hear me or what?
Henrietta: Yeah…yeah. I just don’t want things to be like this for us…
Bordy: Neither do I but you don’t have to destroy me every time something goes wrong.  Life isn’t perfect!  Nobody’s life is!
Henrietta: I’m not destroying you. Stop being so dramatic.
Bordy: I’m already stressed out. I can’t have you chipping away at me day in and day out. It’s hard enough as it is and I just borrowed two thousands dollars from my mother! For us! How do you think that makes me feel? GOOD? I feel like a piece of shit!
Henrietta: I get it.
Bordy: Do you? You’re supposed to be on my side. I’m doing what I can for us. FUCK! Everybody thinks it’s so easy. Everybody.
Henrietta: I don’t.

(pause.)

Bordy: What do you want to eat?
Henrietta: A bagel with cream cheese.
Bordy: That it?
Henrietta: Ummmm. I want a red bull.
Bordy: A red bull? Don’t you think you’re hyper enough?
Henrietta: I’m drained.
Bordy: If you’re drained then I’m wearing an IV.
Henrietta: Chips.
Bordy: (sighs) Anything else?
Henrietta: Onion garlic chips.
Bordy: Let’s just go in together. I’ll go to that bagel place near the house we like.
Henrietta: I hate that place.
Bordy: Why?
Henrietta: That bitch that works there. Can’t stand her. She’s gonna get a slap from me one day. Always flirting with you. She wants your ass so bad.
Bordy: She’s a beast.
Henrietta: But still. I’m gonna jump over the counter one of these days man and beat the shit out of her. I feel it. She fucking winked at you last time. Don’t think I didn’t see from the car. With her dumb little wink. The hoe.
Bordy: What wink?
Henrietta: (she stares at Bordy giving him a look) You smiled right at her when she did it.
Bordy: I was being polite.
Henrietta: Don’t make me find out.
Bordy: What’s wrong with you?
Henrietta: Men will have sex with anything.
Bordy: That’s disgusting. Never in a million years and then after that a million years more. You couldn’t pay me to be with that thing. No freaking way man.
Henrietta: Alright, just checking.
Bordy: Check all you want. (beat) So you want me to go to the place or not?
Henrietta: Fine. Fine. I hope she’s not there that’s all.
Bordy: I’m gonna blow her a kiss.

Henrietta punches Bordy in the shoulder.

Henrietta: Do it. I dare you. Watch what I do, watch.
Bordy: I’ll give her a little tongue action…(he sticks his tongue out and wiggles it)
Henrietta: That’s fine. I want you to. I do. I’ll kick both your asses together.
Bordy: Relax. Just the thought makes me sick.
Henrietta: But honestly, when did your mom say she was gonna give you the money?
Bordy: Few days.
Henrietta: Okay.
Bordy: We friends now?
Henrietta: We’ll see how bagel bitch goes first.

Joseph Arnone

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