British Comedy Guide

Humdrum

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Teddy Paddalack

  • Saturday 16th February 2019, 7:06pm
  • Everton, England
  • 3,108 posts

This is one I wrote awhile back and kept adding and taking stuff away as its one of my favourite pilots and I would give my back teeth to see it produced as I genuinely think that this one is easily good enough for TV. It s the first episode of a series I would have called Humdrum based on the day to day activities of two function /catering installers . In my eyes its worth a read

FADE IN
SCENE: INT CAR: NIGHT.

Two men are having a heated conversation while driving along a darkened motorway. There is a handsfree phone on the dashboard signaling the engaged tone. The driver switches it off

ERIC:
I told you, you should have drove on!

CHRIS:
I just thought it was the right thing to do. They have it tough over there

ERIC:
How many times do I have to tell you, he wasn't a solider!

CHRIS:
It was raining and he had on a uniform

ERIC:
He had a camouflage jacket on! That's not a uniform that's a clue! All the nutters wear them, Rambo Taxi Driver, The Black Panther. Come to think of it I don't think I've even seen an edition of Crimewatch that didn't have one on!

CHRIS:
Well I thought he was one of ours.

ERIC:
He very nearly turned out to be one of theirs!

CHRIS:
Well if you would've stayed awake we wouldn't have got in that mess!

ERIC:
Oh I see so it's my fault? I take a two minute nap and the next minute I wake up next to a man in a camouflage jacket waving a giant knife and talking about how he gasses badgers for a living

CHRIS:
Two minute nap! There was dribble coming out the side of your mouth! Then I just saw the poor sod standing in the rain and then I saw he had a medal

ERIC:
That was the Iron Cross! The last one of those they issued was from the window of a moving car in Berlin 1945.

CHRIS:
When he leaned through the seat to show us his knife, I thought that was it.

ERIC:
Well we wouldn't have seen the knife if you hadn't started asking him stupid questions!

CHRIS:
I just wondered what happens if any of the Badgers escaped the initial gassing. I mean they are quite switched on animals you know.

ERIC:
Well thanks to you, we now know how he switches them off! Did you see the handle on that knife, he's named it Jimbo.

CHRIS
It was hard not to

ERIC:
Pull into this next service station coming up; we can have a coffee or something while you try to get in touch with Eddy and you can explain why you pretended he was your mother calling about your dog being sick.

CHRIS:
I never noticed you coming up with any ideas, when he got that knife out I thought you were going to faint.

ERIC:
That was a ruse

CHRIS:
You don't even know what a ruse is!

ERIC:
Ok so I don't react well at knife point, there's millions of us out there. Pull in now before you get to close to that lorry or we'll miss the service station.

Car leaves motorway and enters slip road to service station

SCENE: INTERIOR OF CAR: NIGHT

ERIC:
Park over there next to that big white van

CHRIS:
I think it's a reserved spot.

ERIC:
It is! For diners.

CHRIS:
Are we diners? All I want is a coffee?

ERIC:
That qualifies.

Both characters exit the car

SCENE: EXTERIOR SERVICE STATION: NIGHT

The two characters are walking and talking as they cross the customer car park and enter the 'Haven on the highway' service station

CHRIS:
I'll try Eddy again.

ERIC:
If you do manage to get through tell him what happened.

CHRIS:
What did you think I was going to say? It's still engaged. Come I'll try him at the table.

Both characters walk through the glass doors of 'Haven on the highway'

SCENE INTERIOR OF SERVICE STATION RESTAURANT AREA: NIGHT

The two characters are at the start of the counter near the trays

ERIC:
What are you doing?

CHRIS:
Getting a tray

ERIC:
What for?

CHRIS:
To put a plate on.

ERIC:
What plate? You said you were having a coffee?

CHRIS:
I changed my mind I'm having the breakfast.

ERIC:
Have you seen the prices in these places?

CHRIS:
Ok so it's bit pricier.

ERIC:
A bit pricier! Look around can you see the price list?

CHRIS:
Not from here I can't.

ERIC:
Why do you think that is?

CHRIS:
I don't know, but I know there will be one on display somewhere in here because it's the law

ERIC:
The law! How naïve are you?

CHRIS:
I'm not naïve, there must be a price list!

ERIC:
Oh there'll be one alright, but I bet it's located behind the till. So by the time you see it, it'll be too late to pull out. These people pray for punters like you.

CHRIS:
I'm not a punter; I'm just getting the 'Travelers Feast'.

ERIC:
So you're not a punter, but you're ordering your breakfast based on a photograph from the seventies. Look at the man ordering it; he's got a porn star moustache and a digital watch and he's wearing a yellow polo neck for gods sake!

CHRIS:
Well I'm still having, it looks fine to me! Anyway don't you ever see the positive side to anything?

ERIC:
I'm positive your breakfast won't look anything like that photograph! Look at that bacon

CHRIS:
I must admit it is a little on the lean side

ERIC:
Lean I'm surprised the farmer never raced it he could have made a fortune. By the looks of it that pig would have murdered a Cheetah over half a mile!

CHRIS:
Well I'm getting it you don't have to.

ERIC:
I know I don't, my limit's a cup of tea in these places.

CHRIS:
Why don't you at least get some toast with it?

ERIC:
No chance you have to pay for the butter separate

CHRIS:
What's wrong with that? They can't exactly butter them all some people might want dry toast

ERIC:
Who's eating dry toast? Its only one step away from a Nil by Mouth

CHRIS:
Everywhere we go you think that people are out to con you out of your money, you should have more faith in people!

ERIC:
Ok then Gandhi let's just wait and see what happens at the till.

CHRIS:
What will happen is I will be eating the Travelers Feast and you won't!

ERIC:
You could at least ask the price before you get there. Look there's a young lad behind the counter over there ask him!

There is a young man standing behind the counter holding a disgusting looking bucket. He is wearing a grubby white t shirt and has a company red hat on.

ERIC:
Excuse me, excuse me.

YOUNG MAN:
BIRMINGHAM ACCENT
Yoo's mean me?

ERIC:
Could you tell me how much the 'Travelers Feast' breakfast costs please.

YOUNG MAN:
I don't work on the tills duck, I'm just behind here to empty the lard traps. Traveler Mary on the till will tell you the price once you get there.

ERIC:
That's what we're trying to avoid.

Young man looks at the suspiciously
CHRIS:
He didn't mean we were hoping to avoid paying!

YOUNG MAN
Yood better not either!

The two men arrive at the till area. A dour looking woman with a thick Birmingham accent is on the till. Her manner is apathetic and her tone is deadpan.

MARY:
15.68 Please!

CHRIS:
Are you sure? All I have is the Travelers Feast two slices of toast two butters and a pot of tea.

MARY:
Sorry ducky I never saw the butter, that will be 16.68!

CHRIS:
What the butter's fifty pence a portion?

MARY:
I don't set the prices sweetheart I only works here!

CHRIS:
Well it should clearly state that the butters are 50p each.

MARY:
It does on the price list sweetheart! It's right behind me on the wall duck

ERIC:
Phhff

MARY:
If you don't want the butter would you put it back in its little basket please?

ERIC:
The price you're charging I'm surprised you don't keep it in the bloody safe!

MARY:
No need to swear at me like I say I only works here.

CHRIS:
You know what? I've changed my mind; I don't want any of it!

MARY:
I'm afraid you'll have to now duck, once anything is taken out of the heated area it's classed as purchased

ERIC:
Heated area? It was under a bulb and that was flickering!

MARY:
That's a heated area that is!

ERIC:
Who are you kidding; Have you any idea what we do for a living?

MARY:
No and I'm not interested either!

ERIC:
We install high end catering equipment, so don't try to tell us about heated display units!

MARY:
Are you's refusing to pay?!

ERIC:
We certainly are!

MARY:
We'll have your car reg on camera we will. When Baz the duty manager comes in, he'll call the police they'll prosecute yous they will!

CHRIS:
There is such thing as Consumers rights you know!

ERIC:
Or in this case the right not to consume! So adieu to you and good day!

BOTH CHARACTERS EXIT CAFÉ/ RESTAURANT AREA

SCENE:FOYER SERVICE STATION: NIGHT

The two characters are standing outside the arcade area.

CHRIS:
I'll try Eddy again.

Chris uses his mobile and gets through. He indicates to Eric with a thumbs up.

ERIC:
Be nice.

CHRIS:
Hello Eddy, Eddy its Chris. Look that cancellation thing and the story about the dog it was made up to get rid of a hitch hiker. We're on our way so don't worry those kitchens will be up and running in no time

Cont

I think it was more what they call a white lie

Cont

No I'm not lying now.

Cont

I'm as sober as a judge.

Cont

I'm not in a pub

Cont

I'm in a service station, no it's not a fruit machine, it's just some kid playing on the Space Invaders.

A dwarf who was playing on the machine has heard the remark he turns around and is extremely aggressive.

DWARF:
Who are you calling a kid?

CHRIS:
Waves his hands to indicate he'll deal with it in a minute

Eddy relax I'm on my way I won't let you down you have my word.

DWARF:
Are you one of those who's got a problem with little people?

CHRIS:
Finishes call
What no no not at all, I was just so busy on my phone and you look a lot younger from behind

DWARF:
Well you look stupider close up!

ERIC
He was on his mobile it was an important call, you've had your apology now buzz off

DWARF:
Don't f**king tell me to buzz off mate anyway why was he holding his phone like that? Were you two taking pictures of my arse?

CHRIS:
Why would I be taking pictures of your backside?

DWARF:
How would I know I'm not a weirdo like you!

The Dwarf storms off as Chris and Eric exit the Service Station.

SCENE: EXTERIOR CAR PARK NIGHT

The two men are standing by their car which has been clamped

CHRIS:
They've clamped my car! I know the law there has to be a clear notice of clamping operations

ERIC:
Points to large sign on the wall
They've got one! That sign must be at least eight foot by eight foot and it's luminous. When we came in that van was blocking it from view

CHRIS:
So what do we do now? I'm not paying £250 pound to get a clamp off that's outrageous!

ERIC:
You know that and I know that just ring them and tell them we were dining and we've come out we found the car clamped!

CHRIS:
But we weren't dining

ERIC:
They don't know that do they. All we do is just go back in and pay for that breakfast! Then we can show the clamper the receipt.

Chris nods in agreement then dials the number on the sign we hear the closing part of the conversation.

CHRIS:
Yes I had the 'Travelers Feast', have you any idea how long this will take, I'm in a rush to see my son

Cont

Yes it's his birthday, He'll be 2. Thank you I'll tell him that. Half an hour! Ok we will go back in and have another coffee, thank you.

Chris completes the call and looks pleased

CHRIS:
I think he fell for it.

ERIC:
They're idiots! The average IQ of a clamper is about 22. Anyway, now comes the hard part.

CHRIS:
What do you mean?

ERIC:
You're going to have to eat humble pie as well as the 'Travelers Feast'.

CHRIS:
This is embarrassing, we've only just stormed out of there, what can I say?

ERIC:
I've stormed out of hundreds of places then had to go back in, just give her a sob story

The two characters are talking as they are walking

CHRIS:
What like?

ERIC:
Tell her that you had just had a call and that somethings happened to your mother. Its safe ground, everyone loves mums, she'll lap that up and you might even get the 'Travelers Feast' for free.

CHRIS:
But we need the receipt.

ERIC:
If she offers just insist on paying half that will be enough.

CHRIS:
That would be my half I'm paying I suppose? No I can't do it it's too embarrassing

ERIC:
I'll do the talking you just look contrite. The clampers are on the way remember!

The two characters re-enter the 'Haven on the highway' restaurant.

SCENE: SERVICE STATION RESTAURANT: NIGHT

The two characters walk over toward Mary who is wiping a table with a filthy cloth. She sees the men and puts her hands on her hips in a confrontational stance. However, she softens when she hears the excuse.

CHRIS:
Hello, its Mary isn't it?

MARY:
Yis it is, what do want now Baz is on his way in and he'll call the cops on you?

ERIC:
Mary, what he's trying to say is that he's sorry. He had some bad news about his mother and he seems to have taken it out on you which was dreadful. So we've come back to say sorry for the way we spoke to you and to pay for the breakfast in case you get into trouble with 'Baz'.

MARY:
Sorry to heeer about your mum duck I hope she gets better.

CHRIS:
She's not ill thank god; it's just that the poor soul has been swindled out of her life savings by a conman posing as a builder.

MARY:
That's terrible that is some people haven't got a days work in them!

ERIC:
Nods solemnly in agreement
They were probably gypsies.

MARY:
Flips
You cheeky swine I'm from a traveler family and I've never stolen a bloody thing in my life and neither has any of my family.

CHRIS:
I'm sorry I have no idea why he just said that!

MARY:
Because he's a bloody racists that's why!

CHRIS:
Mary I can't apologise enough, I can assure you that we're not racists and please at least let me pay for the breakfast

MARY:
I'll take your money for the breakfast but I'm only doing that to save Baz flipping when he gets in. But you can't have anything I don't serve racists!

CHRIS:
Thanks for being so reasonable Mary as I say I can't apologies enough about my friend, he's an idiot but he's not a racist honestly!

Eric is standing silently in sheepish mode

MARY:
He is a racist! If he wants to wait here till my son comes to pick me up when me shift ends in 20 minutes he can tell him that he thinks all Gypsies are thieves! I'm sure my lad will be happy to put him right!
ERIC:
Mary may I step in.

MARY:
No you can step out, you're both barred! And god help you if my son catches you here.

CHRIS AND ERIC EXIT THE RESTAURANT

SCENE EXTERIOR CAR PARK: NIGHT

Chris and Eric are jacketless and starting to feel the morning air.

CHRIS:
Why in gods name did you blamed gypsies!

ERIC:
How the hell was I supposed to know she was a Gypsy?

CHRIS:
She's called Traveler Mary!

ERIC:
Don't try that one; you know we both thought she was called that because she made the 'Travelers Feast'! How the hell was I supposed to know it means she's a gypsy! She could have least made an effort to look like one.

CHRIS:
You don't seriously think that Gypsy women dress like they're in a Hammer Horror film do you?

ERIC:
I did think they dressed in a certain way, that's why I wasn't on my guard.

CHRIS:
Not on your guard! So what you're saying is if you don't see anyone dressed in their national costume you think it's ok to start talking like Hitler!

ERIC:
I'm not even sure calling a person a gypsy is offensive.

CHRIS:
Well if we're still here when her son lands then good luck convincing him that it's ok to insult his mother

ERIC:
If he gets here before the clamper we're in big trouble.

CHRIS:
Where's the WE coming from? I never said anything wrong.

ERIC:
What if there's a van full of them on their way to tarmac something!

CHRIS:
Now if that statements not racist it's definitely stereotyping. It is however on the other hand a very real and very scary possibility.

ERIC:
We have to hope that the clamper man comes before Mary's son.

CHRIS:
What if he doesn't?

ERIC:
Then we'll have to front him up, there's two of us.

CHRIS:
Anyone looking at us can see we couldn't fight our way out of a paper bag!

ERIC:
What if the gypsy can't fight? I mean they can't all be tough as nails, there's got be one of them who can't fight.

CHRIS:
So the plan is to stay here and hope that when Mary's son comes to pick her up, he turns out to be the only Gypsy in the country who can't f**king fight?

ERIC:
What if we get into a position where we can see who comes first but they can't see us.

CHRIS:
Do you mean hide!

ERIC:
Unless you have a better plan?

CHRIS:
I suppose that we don't need to hide actually hide, let's just move over by the petrol station.

SCENE: EXTERIOR PETROL STATION FORECOURT: NIGHT.

The two characters are standing shivering near the sand buckets.

CHRIS:
Don't you think we should actually go in and read the papers and stuff like we're browsing?

ERIC:
It's not WH Smiths, all these expect is a quick in and out who's browsing in motorway petrol stations?

CHRIS:
We can't just stand here we're blocking the fire buckets.

ERIC:
Believe you me if a petrol station catches fire the first thing you do is get away as fast as you can. Who in their right mind would be running around looking for a bucket of sand?

CHRIS:
The girl on the till is stirring over at us.

ERIC:
Just keep talking she will think we're waiting for someone.
CHRIS:
She might think we're robbers casing the joint.

ERIC:
Casing the joint? Who are you supposed to be Tony Soprano?

CHRIS:
She keeps looking over.

ERIC:
Look the other way; don't draw attention to yourself.

CHRIS:
I can't it's like a car crash I can't stop looking, oh oh now she's phoning someone.

ERIC:
That's not a phone stupid, it's a microphone.

The young girl behind the protective glass speaks over the tannoy in a thick Birmingham accent.

CASHIER
Tannoy Voice
Would the two blokes at the end of the forecourt move away from the fire fighting area please?

CHRIS
Well we can't stay here now

ERIC:
Lets head over towards those bushes, we could hide in them.

CHRIS:
So your plan is to cross a floodlight car park, then hide inside a two foot high bush while being watched by a woman with a Tannoy system who by the way has already moved us on for looking suspicious

ERIC:
Well we'll have to do something before she phones the police on us

ERIC:
Points excitedly
I think it's the clamper man!

Characters hurriedly exit the forecourt.

SCENE: EXTERIOR CAR PARK; NIGHT.

Chris and Eric walk hurriedly toward a white van. the driver sees the two men and steps out the van, his tone is chirpy to the point of annoyance

CHRIS:
Hello, we phoned you.

CLAMPER:
How do, I take it you're the bloke I clamped by mistake?

CHRIS:
I certainly am.

CLAMPER:
Sorry about that sir, if I can just see your receipt I will have that clamp off in two shakes of a lamb's tail.

CHRIS:
Hands over receipt
As you can see I had the Travelers feast.

CLAMPER:
I'm sorry sir but this receipt's timed 5.00am on the dot and your call to our offices was logged at 4.56am.

CHRIS:
I can explain that, you see there was a mix up with the order and Mary the woman on the till

CLAMPER:
No nonsense interjection
I'm sorry sir but we can only go by the times stated. I will have to ask you to pay in full and clear up any mix up you have with 'Haven on the Highway PLC' when you get home. I have their website address in my van if you like I could....

CHRIS:
Interjects
But I did buy the breakfast and there was a mix up honestly.

CLAMPER:
It's not my first day on the job Sir. Now I'm not saying you're one of them, but have you any idea of how many people try the old backdated receipt trick? If I had a pound for.....

ERIC:
Interjects
No you get £250!

CLAMPER:
There's no need for this to turn nasty sir!

CHRIS:
I'm sorry about my friend; he's having a bad day as well

CLAMPER:
That's understandable sir. Now will it be cash or credit card sir? We take both

ERIC:
There's a surprise!

CLAMPER:
Listen mate there's a refrigerated lorry driver over at 'Larry's Lay By' screaming be released. I only came here first so that your mate could get to see his son on his birthday

CHRIS:
I know and I'm grateful, I'll use my debit card, if you could just speed it up please.

CLAMPER:
Certainly sir, we don't want the little un pining at the window on his birthday now do we? I'll just get my Chip N Pin doo dah from the van

The man gets into his van

CHRIS:
Hissing
Don't you think we've had enough arguments in this place? The last thing we need is another one.

The Clamper gets out of his van and is holding a Chip & Pin device

CLAMPER:
Here we go sir, if you could just put your card in there and I'll look away whilst you punch in your secret digits shall I?

The clamper turns away in an exaggerated fashion. As he does so Eric is distracted by movement through the restaurant window

ERIC:
Hissing
Oh my god Traveler Mary's putting her coat on her shift must be over!

F/X Electronic Beeping

CLAMPER:
Sorry sir it looks like your payment never went through, do you want to do it again? Only this time concentrate on your pin number please. I'll look away again while you do it shall I?

CHRIS:
Could we speed this up please?

F/X Electronic Beeping

CLAMPER:
More speed less haste is what I always say sir. Now it looks like it's gone through that time, so if you can wait just one minute it should print your receipt off and then we can get that nasty clamp off eh

CHRIS:

Could you at least take the clamp off while you're waiting?

CLAMPER:
No problem sir, I'll just put me chip n pin doo dah back into my van.

ERIC:
Christ here's a van, this could be Mary's son.

CHRIS:
Whoever it is there's two of them.

ERIC:
Oh no one of them is the mad hitchhiker!

CHRIS:
He's coming over, think of something quick.

The hitchhiker arrives on scene dressed in a camouflage jacket and Iron Cross. His tone is extremely menacing and both characters are clearly frightened of him

HITCHER:
I thought you two were doing a U turn to see your dog in the vets?

CHRIS:
We were, but my phone went dead so I had to use a phone in here to check on the poor thing and got clamped into the bargain.

HITCHER:
What they clamped you while you were trying to check how your dog was?

CHRIS:
It's no big thing my company will pay for the clamp and it gave us a chance to have a coffee and stave off driver fatigue. So we mustn't grumble.

HITCHER:
I don't get fatigue I'm either asleep or awake. I've trained myself to stay awake for three days at a time; you need to be able to do that if you want to trap Badgers

The Clamper then stands up from behind the car

CLAMPER:
There you go sir the clamps off now

HITCHER:
Is this the Muppet who clamped you?

CHRIS:
No not at all, this chap came around right away to take it off

CLAMPER:
I'll just get your receipt from the doo dah in the van sir

CHRIS:
Thanks.

HITCHER:
I wouldn't have paid the Muppet; I would have torn that clamp off with my bare hands or used Jimbo!

The clamper returns with the receipt and is holding out two pieces of till roll

CLAMPER:
I'm awfully sorry sir but it looks like the machine did work first time so your accounts been debited twice.

CHRIS:
Can't you cancel it? That's five hundred pounds!

CLAMPER:
Not out in the field sir, we don't have that facility. But our website address is on the back of the receipt and if you log on and put the receipt number in we should be able to credit your account within 28 working days

HITCHER:
Listen here you Muppet, get their money back or you'll be answering to me, this man has got a sick dog!

CHRIS:
It's fine I'll get it on expenses, please don't get into any trouble on my account!

HITCHER:
What trouble? I'd wipe the floor with this Muppet no problem!

CLAMPER:
Here don't start threatening me I'm only doing my job!

HITCHER:
Some job you've got you little runt persecuting a man with a sick dog!

CLAMPER:
I never knew he had a sick dog did I? It wouldn't have mattered anyway, company policy states unclamping without payment only extends to sick people not animals, even then a doctor has to sign off the back of the ticket.

HITCHER:
A doctor will be signing you off if you don't give him his money back Muppet

CLAMPER:
You won't get anywhere calling me names mate

CHRIS:
It's fine, I'll claim it back on line, now we'll just be on our way if you don't mind.

CLAMPER:
That's probably best sir, you don't want to ruin your little lads birthday do you?

HITCHER:
Shut it Muppet you've done enough already!

CLAMPER:
Listen here I've had enough of you calling me a bloody Muppet! I'm only doing my job you know!

HITCHER:
You'' be clamping trolleys in intensive care if you don't watch your mouth!

CHRIS:
Let's all calm down, please

CLAMPER:
You want to listen to him mate. You're wasting your time threatening me. I've already got a metal plate in my head, thanks to this job. I can't even go in Tesco without setting bloody alarms off!

F/X Chris's Mobile Phone Rings

CHRIS:
I have to take this call, please let's all calm down

HITCHER:
I thought you said your phone was dead?

CHRIS:
Erg it must have been the Reception.

ERIC:
Changes the subject
You say the plate in your head sets off shop alarms?

CLAMPER:
Yeah and I can't use microwaves either they give me headaches.

HITCHER:
You're giving me a headache.

CLAMPER:
You want to watch yourself mate I'm two eighths disabled, you could get in trouble for hate speech!

HITCHER:
If you don't shut it I'll take you up to 99 percent no problem!

The Clamper and the Hitcher become embroiled in an argument, as Chris's mobile rings

CHRIS:
Discreetly to Eric
It's Eddy! I can't take the call here

ERIC:
Go inside the toilets and talk to him I'll try and keep these two nutcases busy.

CHRIS:
Ok

SCENE: INTERIOR TOILET CUBICLE NIGHT

CHRIS:
Hello Eddy, sorry about that

Cont

I sound funny? Oh I'm in a tunnel

Eric enters the toilets and urgently attempts to discretely locate Chris.

ERIC:
Panicky loud whispers
Chris! Chris! Chris!

CHRIS:
Here, I'm in here!

Chris then returns to the conversation on the mobile as he concludes the call he drops the mobile and it goes under the next cubicle and he quickly retrieves it.

CHRIS:
Oh crap!
Recovers phone and exits cubicle

ERIC:
Rambo's got the Clamper in a headlock and he's ramming his head into the side of his van. Apparently, he's going to turn the metal plate into a metal bowl. So while they're at that we seriously need to get out of this mad house

The dwarf from the arcade exits a cubicle and suspiciously looks into the cubicle Chris has just left. He then notices Chris and Eric in conversation by the hand dryer. His tone is aggressive.

DWARF:
Hey what are you weirdo's up too now?

ERIC:
Not that it's got anything to do with you, but we happen to be talking privately.

DWARF:
That phone in your hand?

CHRIS:
My phone? What about it?

DWARF
Looks back at the cubicles and then reaches a conclusion
You're at it again aren't you!

CHRIS:
At what?

DWARF:
You just took a photo of me on the bloody bog didn't you ?

CHRIS:
What!

DWARF:
What did you do take an 'Up Shot' of me did you? Going to pass me off as a kid to your sick mates were you!

ERIC
We don't even know what an 'Up Shot' is So buzz off!

DWARF:
I'll Buzz you off, filthy perverts give me that phone, we'll soon see what you've been up to!

Eric and Chris become embroiled in a farcical tussle with the Dwarf and it spills out of the toilets and onto the car park.

SCENE:EXTERIOR DRIVERS REST AREA TOILETS. NIGHT
The three characters are still jostling each other and arguing. A police sergeant has been watching the fracas with disgust he then intervenes.

SERGEANT:
Welsh accent firm
Ok come on break it up or I'll run the lot of you in.

The three characters stop jostling and line up like naughty schoolboys explaining to a teacher

SERGEANT:
Right what's going on here, fighting outside public toilets? I think we're all better than that now, don't you?

DWARF:
I'm glad you're here constable; this pervert took an 'Up Shot' of me on the bog. It's the second time in ten minutes I've caught them at it and I want them arrested!

SERGEANT:
I'm not a constable sir as you can see I have stripes on my arm so that means I'm a Sergeant!

DWARF:
Alright! You don't have to talk to me like we're on Sesame Street you know, I'm small not stupid!

CHRIS:
I never took an 'Up Shot' sergeant! I just dropped my phone in the cubicle

SERGEANT:
So you did have your phone out in the cubicle then did you sir?

CHRIS:
I was answering an urgent call. Look sergeant I'm in a terrible rush so if you don't mind

SERGEANT:
I can appreciate you're in a bit rush sir, but let's take it one step at a time, shall we? So I can work out who's who and what's what before anyone starts rejoining the motorway

DWARF:
You'll see more than what's what if you look at that perverts mobile

CHRIS:
I've told you I was on the phone to my boss!

DWARF:
Who do you work for Hugh Heffner!?

ERIC:
Do we have to listen to this man sergeant?

SERGEANT:
No sir you'd don't! You would all however be better off listening to me. Now at this moment in time either rightly or wrongly you two have been accused of taking intimate pictures of this gentleman.

DWARF:
Intimate, who are you kidding? These two were only a few steps away from invasive surgery!

ERIC:
This man is clearly unstable sergeant!

DWARF:
I show you who's unstable, I'll knock you right off your stupid feet in a minute! And don't think I'd have any trouble doing it.

SERGEANT:
Right shut up the lot of you. At this moment in time I've got a Clamper with his head bashed in, suspicious men reported around the petrol station and a racist incident in the restaurant and now I've got a possible peeping Tom job on my hands. I don't know what's been going on in this place tonight but it's taken up the entire Motorway night shift between here and Newport bloody Pagnall.

ERIC:
Sergeant I can clearly see that you have your hands full, I am more than happy to show you my phone, I've got nothing to hide, but if we could do this now because I really need to be setting off.

DWARF:
He's probably already deleted it, then once he's hoodwinked you he'll retrieve it from the mobiles memory recycle bin and then download it onto the net

SERGEANT:
I must say you seem to know an awful lot about how to do this type of thing. You're a bit of a computer buff yourself then I take it sir.

DWARF:
I know my way around a computer.

ERIC:
He's thinks he's R2D2.

DWARF:
Don't you call me R2 bloody D2.

SERGEANT:
Right that's it, the three of you over to the van now!

All shuffle dejectedly over to a marked police van

SCENE: EXTERIOR REAR OF POLICE VAN: NIGHT

There is banging coming from inside the van. The back doors of the van are open and two men are behind a caged door. A young constable is nervously waiting to report to his sergeant. The sergeant looks through the cage mesh as he speaks.

SERGEANT:
What are you holding those two idiots on?

CONSTABLE:
I think we've hit a bit of a jackpot here sarge. First I blew the clamper through turns out he's wanted by three forces in relation to all sorts of antics

CLAMPER:
From Inside the van
I'm not wanted by three forces I sorted it all out two weeks ago I still say that the hospice car park is on my patch and those nuns gave me their gold crosses as a deposit, I'm not a bloody mugger. The Dudley one I'll hold my hands up to, it's all on camera anyway how was I supposed to know that the man really was blind?

SERGEANT:
I couldn't possibly comment sir. You're best waiting to tell the officers involved in the case. Now Parker what about the other character?

CONSTABLE:
You'll love this sarge, he's wanted by DEFRA! I don't know who they are but it could be a terrorism job.

SERGEANT:
Steady now Parker it's only the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. Chummy here is probably a poacher!

HITCHER:
From behind the cage mesh
I'm not a bloody poacher and DEFRA can take a flying jump! Two grand for a license! I gassed over 700 Badgers for them during the big rabies scare in 2012 and they still haven't paid me my ten quid a head bounty! Let them pay for my license out of that!

CHRIS
Sergeant I don't want to appear rude but could you sort our case out first I really am in a hurry.

HITCHER
Go ahead sarge deal with him first I don't mind, his dogs not well so he's in a rush to get home

SERGEANT:
Home? I thought you were in a rush to go in the opposite direction sir, now before we go any further is there a problem with the address you gave me?

CHRIS:
No... no... look Sergeant the truth is that I just said I had a sick dog because I gave that guy a lift and he scared me so I made a story up to get shot of him!

The Hitcher is handcuffed from behind but he goes berserk with his legs in the cage and the Clamper starts screaming

CLAMPER
Help get me he's gone berserk

The Sergeant goes over and speaks calmly through the mesh

SERGEANT
Now either quieten down or I'll have to use my pepper spray.

HITCHER:
You'd be wasting your time copper I've gassed myself 6 times with Exocide so pepper sprays nothing to me!

CLAMPER
Don't you dare I'm disabled I've got a metal plate in my head and I can only breath through one nostril

CHRIS
Points to his watch
Sergeant if you don't mind I really am in a hurry

DWARF:
In a hurry to scarper don't you mean, What about me? I've been molested!

SERGEANT:
Are you now saying this man actually touched you?

DWARF:
Not exactly no... But he's got pictures of my under carriage on his phone have a look

CHRIS:
Smug
Here's my mobile sergeant and I'm sure that my friend will happily show you his and as you can plainly see neither have the capacity to take photographs! We work in an industry that has a lot of VIP's so the rule is no cameras. I would have explained that before if this man hadn't have been so coarse

SERGEANT:
Examines phones
That does appear to be the case, so if we can all shake hands I might be able to get back to some real police work

DWARF:
So is that it, you're going to take his word for it. He said himself he was lying just to get shut of the poacher?

HITCHER:
Behind the mesh cage
Hey half day closing, I'm not a bloody poacher

CLAMPER
Shut up or we'll get gassed like Badgers

HITCHER:
That's how I want to go

SERGEANT:
Rolls his eyes at the drama
I'm sorry sir but as there is no camera on either phone, there is nothing I can do

DWARF:
So you're just going to let these two waltz away are you?

SERGEANT:
I think you need to calm down sir

DWARF:
Don't you tell me to calm down! These two perverts can see you're gormless so they're running rings round you

SERGEANT:
That's not a very nice thing to say now is it sir? Why don't you run along before I lose my patience eh?

DWARF:
Don't tell me to run along I'm not a kid and I want these perverts searched for another mobile. So do your job you gormless twit

SERGEANT:
Sir I won't warn you again, cut down the personal abuse or you'll end up in more trouble than you handle

DWARF:
How much trouble do you think I can handle then dickhead?

SERGEANT:
Right you're nicked

The sergeant arrests the Dwarf and opens the mesh cage back of the van and places him in it as he does so he releases the Hitcher.

SERGEANT
I'm not getting involved in DEFRAS I've got enough on my hands here, this place is worse than the Bronx tonight it really is!

DWARF:
What's the charge? You can't hold me without a charge?

SERGEANT:
Public Order! If you can keep your mouth shut you might, I say might get away with a street caution once the situations calmed down.

DWARF
Why what're you going to do? Swap a few pictures with those perverts then give them a blue light escort all the way to Soho?

HITCHER:
Rubs his hands to increase his circulation
Thanks for letting me go sarge, that DEFRA stuff's a load of cobblers!

SERGEANT:
Looks at Chris and Eric
I take it you two would be happy to be on your way? Unless you wish to pursue the false allegations? If that's the case then you'll have to follow the van to the station

CHRIS:
No that'll be fine Sergeant

The Hitcher puts his arms over Chris & Eric's shoulders

HITCHER
Great stuff if I could just get my rucksack out of the front of your van Sarge? I'll get a lift of these two now that we're all friends again

SERGEANT:
Come with me and we'll get your property sorted out.

CHRIS:
Hissing
I'm not getting back in the car with him; I'm telling you that for nothing!

ERIC:
Leave it to me, just be ready to leave, fast

The Sergeant and the Hitcher return the Hitcher is putting on his backpack

SERGEANT:
Well as far as I'm concerned you two gents are free to leave as well

ERIC:
Thank you very much sergeant and once again we're sorry for all the fuss. You did say you gave my friend everything back, including Jimbo? He'd be lost without that

SERGEANT:
Who or what is Jimbo?

HITCHER:
Holding out a giant knife
Here's Jimbo!

SERGEANT:
Extreme caution
Now sir I think you know you're not supposed to have a knife like that in public? So if you could just pass it to me handle first

HITCHER:
What are you on about? You get a free license to carry it off the website when you buy it

SERGEANT
I'm sorry sir but English law doesn't allow for internet weapon licenses. I'm afraid I'll have to take it off you

HITCHER:
No chance mate I've got a license so you can clear off

The Sergeant retracts his baton over his shoulder as he does so Eric indicates to Chris and they slide off hurriedly.
As they do so we hear the conversation continuing behind them

HITCHER:
I've told you before that spray doesn't scare me mate

SCENE INTERIOR OF CAR: DAWN
Chris and Eric are sitting in their car facing the car parks exit sign. They are almost out of breath their relief is almost palpable. Chris looks at his watch and starts the car as he speaks.

CHRIS:
We've got to be in London in 85 minutes, I'm 500 quid down and wanted in connection with half the crimes in the county. So I hope you're not going to have a problem with me ignoring the speed limit?

ERIC:
Just Go Go!

The car drives toward the exit road, however the route is blocked by a large man in a high viz vest holding a spade.

CHRIS:
Look at this idiot, he's going to get himself killed.

ERIC:

Oh my god its Mary's son!

CHRIS:

Jesus Christ!

Windscreen smashes

The End

Avatar

Rood Eye

  • Sunday 17th February 2019, 12:58am [Edited]
  • England
  • 3,637 posts

It's got lots of funny lines and lots of funny actions and, no matter what anybody may say about it, there have certainly been far worse things than this on TV.

The two men are catering engineers but their jobs don't feature in this pilot episode. It's mentioned in dialogue but, if that one line were taken out, they could just as easily be in any other line of work. If their line of work is important to the series, it should figure in this episode. If it's not important to the series, there's no need to mention it when describing the series. I've never seen a sitcom based around catering installations but there might be a very good reason for that. However, if you've got lots of funny installation-based plotlines, all well and good.

The incidents involving the dwarf and the gypsy are funny - especially to those of us who have no time for the PC Brigade but I'm not sure dwarfs being mistaken for children and gypsies being keen to beat up anybody who suggests gypsies are violent are what producers are looking for in 21st-century sitcoms.

Oh, and gassing badgers isn't going to go down well either, and neither is slicing them up with huge knives.

All in all though, it's funny - and that's the main thing!

Avatar

Teddy Paddalack

  • Sunday 17th February 2019, 7:43am [Edited]
  • Everton, England
  • 3,108 posts

Thanks for reading it Roody and yes its not PC but its not offensive its funny. I doubt anyone can meet the current TV criteria without having to take most of the meat out of the stew . Who knows they may relent once they realize that the internet is allowing things that people actually laugh at rather than what they should be laughing at. But again thanks for reading it , it will never go anywhere, but I really enjoyed writing it .