Sunday, October 25, 2009

Verkoff: A Terrible Ego

In a painful homage to Mr. Darrow's magnum opus, I pretend I mean present the untold origin of Nigella Jay Verkoff.


[An evening in the late 1990s. Two teenagers come out of a theatre and crss the footbridge. One, Steve, is a good-looking Aborigine with a pig tail. His companion, Max, is a Goth in a leather jacket.]

Steve: [disgusted] The Glass Menagarie. After a close call escaping that toss for the HSC, you drag us to see an all-male production of it by Camp Musicals PLC.

Max: It wasn’t too bad, Steve.

Steve: Max. Are you SURE you didn’t contract homosexuality from it?

Max: [thinks about it] far.

Steve: Where to now?

Max: Well, I was thinking of checking out that Buffy Marathon...

Steve: Who cares what you think, Max? It’s not even 10 on a Friday Night. Let us party!

Max: [downcast] We can’t party by watching Buffy?

Steve: No. No, we cannot. Come on, there’ll be beer.

Max: I hate beer!

Steve: Which is why I’m warning you ahead. Like that time you RUINED my satay shish kabobs with that... what did you call it again?

Max: Peanut allergy.

Steve: Oh yeah. [rolls eyes] WHATEVER, Max. WHATEVER!

Max: [completely serious] I nearly died, Steve.

Steve: Only because I nearly killed you. That chick was totally going to put out for me until you did the spasm thing and threw up. In her LAP! God, that’s a passion killer, Max, it really is. Her crotch stank of your vomit for days.

Max: ...and if you don’t want me to throw up right now, you won’t tell me how you know that.

Steve: Anyway, there might be a game of pool in it for you.

Max: [brightens] Really?

Steve: Well, there are pool tables. I think.

Max: You think?

Steve: At the pub.

Max: What pub?

Steve: The one we’re going to.

Max: But it has pool tables?

Steve: Probably.

Max: It probably has pool tables?

Steve: Yeah. Course, we might not go there.

Max: Mightn’t we?

Steve: Don’t worry, Max. What I have in mind, Steve, involves lots of drunken spastics for you to beat at pool. The presence of pool-playing facilities is totally irrelevant.

Max: How can I beat them at pool if there isn’t a table to play?

Steve: More to the point, how can you LOSE if there isn’t a table? Huh? Uh? Uh-huh? Uh? Huh?

[Max opens his mouth to speak.]

Steve: Shut up. The pub’ll be closed by now anyway.

[A very suburban backyard, mainly concreted over and boring. Max is sipping a Coke can mutinously. Steve is lounging by the door.]

Steve: Tell me this isn’t better than being stuck inside your hovel watching that whore Sarah Michelle Gellar flirt with corpses, Max. Tell me that.

Max: It isn’t.

Steve: You’re a freak, Max. Frankly, I’m really wondering why I keep you on.

[A chirpy guy with Bill Kelty hair emerges from the house. This is Bertram.]

Bertram: So, guys, enjoying the party?

[They both stare at him.]

Bertram: Had any thoughts about that camping trip with me?

[They continue to stare.]

Bertram: You, uh, seen Alex?

[They nod and point to a body lying on the grass. Bertram sighs and collects a hose to spray the unconscious Alex with.]

Steve: I’d thought you’d like Alex.

Max: I don’t.

Steve: He’s into Buffy.

Max: He’s into vampire sex scenes, it’s not quite the same thing.

Steve: Isn’t it? You’re all perverts.

[Bertram finally revives Alex.]


[He collapses again.]

Steve: What do you think of Denise?

Max: She’s nice.

Steve: Porn star. Bet you anything. Look how she treated me.

Max: She offered you a sausage sandwich.

Steve: Code, Max. It was code. My sausage, her sandwich.

Max: So handing you a stale bit of bread with a burnt sausage and some onions on it?

Steve: More code.

Max: And the fact everyone else got one?

Steve: Plausible deniability.

Max: You’re insane, Steve. I mean, seriously, I think you have severe mental problems requiring therapy.

Steve: Ah, Maxy-Maxy-Maxy. One day you too will know the sexual ecstasy I have.

Max: Steve. Unlike myself, you’re still a virgin.

[Steve lets out a delighted laugh and then punches Max with enough force to slam his head through the plywood wall behind them.]


[He kicks away Max’s seat, leaving Max hanging by the neck. He lets out muffled screams.]

Steve: But in the meantime I will settle for the porn star and any unattached female creature I can find.

[Another guy blocks Steve’s path as he reenters the house.]

Steve: [bored] What is it, Terry?

Terry: Steve, I see how you’ve been acting with my woman, Steve, I saw it, I really did and I know it, I know you and I know her and I know what I saw. And I’m laying down the law, Steve, I’m going to put my foot down and actually come out and tell you what’s going down. She is my mistress, my lover, my best friend in the whole world and you are some cruddy legal studies student who didn’t even score at the Year 12 Formal when you turned up naked, so if you think I’m going to let you... [holds up a hand] OK!!! [long pause] and I am not going to let you take my girlfriend go with a stunted little sociopath like you who has a sadomasochistic relationship with the only person in the seven years I’ve known you to actually even attempt to call you a friend and if you so much as step one baby foot length out of line...

Steve: Terry?

Terry: Yes?

Steve: You are the most tedious, pretentious fuckwit I’ve ever met.

[Steve pushes past him and enters the party. Terry watches him go and stands around, awkward. Max continues to moan in pain.]

Terry: Yeah... well... look in the mirror sometime. Heh. [Louder] LOOK IN THE MIRROR SOMETIME, STEVE!! HAHAHA!

Steve: [from within] Every chance I get, Terry.

[Long pause.]

Terry: [sighs] Damn it, that asshole’s mind moves quick.

[Inside, Steve is chatting with a bored Chinese teenage girl reading Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.]

Steve: [munching a snag] So, uh, you know that Harry dies in the second-last chapter, right?

[The girl sighs and puts down the book. Steve punches the air.]

Steve: Don’t worry, Aileen. Let us speak of more interesting things. Like... me, for instance.

[Aileen rises and heads up some stairs. Denise follows. Steve watches them go.]

Steve: Well, well, well, well...

[Max enters, rubbing blood from his neck.]

Steve: You see that, Max?

Max: Fuck you, Steve.

Steve: Methinks there’s a lesbian orgy about to occur upstairs.

Max: One, there needs to be more than two people for an orgy, you spastic, and two, Aileen’s straight.

Steve: Ah, but Denise is bisexual.

Max: No she isn’t.

Steve: Who in this life is truly hetero? [quickly] And don’t say the Pope. That would just lead to a conversation that would be inappropriate. Especially with him dying.

Max: Dying?

Steve: It might take the Church a while to admit it, but you can tell rigor mortis is setting in. [sighs happily] I am just so intelligent it’s frightening.

Max: Spell “excavator”, Steve.

Steve: [beat] This is officially the worst party I’ve ever been to. I swear, if those two chicks don’t get naked, moist and sweaty in the next half an hour, I’m gonna have to consider smashing this house up.

Max: It’s not your house.

Steve: And therein lies the perfect crime.

[Alex stumbles drunkenly down the stairs.]

Alex: Yeah. Bros. Check this out.

[Neither Max nor Steve move. Alex rolls his eyes and stumble closer.]

Alex: You know Aileen and Denise?

Max: [sarcastic] Are they undressing each other on Denise’s bed?

Alex: Yeah.

Max: You see? Utter nonse – [startled] They are?!

Steve: [impressed] There is but one word for this moment. And that word is “jackpot”.

[Bertram enters cheerfully.]

Bertram: How are things going, people?

Max: [dazed] Denise and Aileen are lezzing it up on your bed, Bertram.

Bertram: WHAT?!?

Max: It’s what Alex said!

Bertram: Denise? MY DENISE?!

Alex: [thinking furiously... well, thinking anyway] Ah, well... I just... you know... saw them. One of them. Getting changed. The other one was, er, just lying on the bed. Alone. And NOT having sex. Or even anything vaguely like that! [frowns] Is that the floor rushing up to meet me?

[He slumps unconscious.]

Max: This is why alcohol is bad you.


Bertram: I’m going for a walk. I may be some time.

[Bertram storms out, then storms back in, picks up a walkman, and storms out again.]

Steve: I’ll take that as a “please feel free to join the orgy, Steve” shall I?

Max: [worried] You think he’s going to commit suicide?

Steve: I’m honestly not sure. If he does, I get the couch. [rises] Now, time to show the Sapphic Temptresses upstairs about how they do it in Jersey!

[Denise tumbles down the stairs and falls behind a couch. Aileen runs down the stairs and dives behind the couch as well. Steve and Max stare.]

Steve: I bet they’re naked.

Max: They’re not.

Steve: They are.

Max: [controlled sigh] For fuck’s sake, Steve, we just saw them. They’re not naked.

Steve: Past tense, my friend. Prepare for the screams of ecstasy.

[Steve crosses over to the couch, grinning.]

Aileen: [sotto] Oh my god... there’s so much blood!

[Steve’s grin fades. There is a near sob from behind the couch. Steve creeps back to Max.]

Steve: [pale] Might sit this one out.

[Max turns and glares at him.]

[An ambulance hurtles away from the house, sirens wailing and lights flashing. Steve, Max and Terry stand by the door watching them go.]

Steve: Drama queen.

Max: She cut her chin open!

Steve: Like you’ve never done that!

[Steve indicates the cuts on Max’s neck.]

Max: You did that!

Steve: Point still stands! [sighs] Aileen’s such a bitch! I wasn’t the one who tackled Denise, was I? It was her, and then she goes and blames me for it!

Terry: You could have been more diplomatic about it.

Steve: I was a paragon of virtue.

Terry: You had a hysterical screaming fit and slapped Denise to get her to calm down.

Steve: I offered her a sausage.

Max: Is that code...?

Steve: SHUT UP, MAX! I didn’t even get a good look at the gash...

[Steve realizes he is being looked at with total disgust.]

Steve: What?! Anyway, since Bertram’s dead, the house is ours! Let’s trash it!

Terry: Steven. You are highly inadequate, terribly easy to amuse and trick, suffering from crippling delusions of grandeur and slaves to society’s treadmill of mediocrity as well as a brainless trend-followers

Steve: You know what? If you can’t think of nothing nice to say, say nothing.

[Terry snorts, unimpressed. Steve dropkicks him and then beats him up.]

Max: [thoughtful] Steve?

Steve: What is it, Max?

Max: I’ve come to the decision that I don’t actually like you. If I ever see you again, I will call the police.

Steve: What?!

[Max turns and wanders off. Steve is stunned.]

Steve: Yeah? Well, er... um... IT’S YOUR SISTER I FANCY ANYWAY, YOU SLAG!

Max: [still walking away] I don’t have a sister.

Steve: Yeah, I know, it’s just... well... that’s what I normally say when I’m dumped. Can we just pretend I came up with a pretty good retort?

Max: [casual] Fuck you, Steve.

Steve: Of all the ungrateful... [to Terry] This is ALL [kick] YOUR [kick] FAULT [kick] EXCLAMATION [kick] MARK!!!

[Steve goes for an impressive kick, overbalances and falls over.]

Steve: [miserable] Oh what a brilliant metaphor for my life so far.

[Inside the house. It is much later and Steve is knocking back yet another can.]

Steve: [drunk] An I wuz born, born, BORN, born to be aliiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiive! [suddenly angry] I HATE YOU ALL AND YOU BASTARDS RUINED MY NIGHT!

[A groggy Maori girl sits up from behind a chair.]

Christie: Waz all the noise about? [checks what] Jeez, bro, it’s like half past two in the morning!

Steve: Hey... do I know you?

Christie: Don’t think so. Who are you?

Steve: Steve. You?

Christie: I’m not Steve.

Steve: Your loss.

Christie: I’m Christie. What’s going on?

Steve: Bertram and Denise have split up, Denise, Aileen and Alex have gone to hospital, Bertram’s gone off to commit suicide, Terry’s losing a lot of blood on the front lawn and Max has fucked off.

Christie: So... uh... what do we do now?

[Steve hands her a can.]

Steve: I think Plan A should work.

Christie: [takes a sip] What’s Plan A?

Steve: Well, now.

[Cut to Bertram’s bedroom, a disturbingly neat and tidy set of quarters that is systematically demolished as the very drunk Steve and Christie stumble into the bedroom, trying to undress each other. They fall onto the bed, still struggling to take each other’s clothes off.]

Christie: You got a condom?

[Steve talks through kissing her face.]

Steve: What? You want safe sex? “Safe sex”! Bullshit! Sex is all about danger! Who wants caution when...

[He mimes playing Russian Roulette, spinning a gun and aiming at his head.]

Steve: Is THIS the one?

Christie: [laughs] You’re full of shit.

Steve: [kisses her again] To the brim.

Christie: You really believe that?

Steve: Nah, I just don’t have any on me!

[They start shagging. The TV lights up showing a train rushing into a tunnel, fireworks exploding...]

Christie: Oops, I’m lying on the remote.

[She switches off the TV and goes back to snogging Steve.]


Steve: [gently] Hey. It’s my baby too. That’s why I want it dead.


Jared "No Nickname" Hansen said...

I find this quite funny, but I'm not entirely sure what the idea is. A bizarre fusion of YOA, the literary works of Paul Darrow and incidents from my own life?

Youth of Australia said...

Pretty much.

It struck me about the "Jenna teaches preschool" angle could prove an interesting well of material, and AATA suggested a cool generational origin tale. So I thought about a YOA version.

But Dave has a relatively boring life story (his mum and the combine harvester is the most interesting thing... except maybe her sharing a flat with Victoria Waterfield), and Andrew's life is basically a Life On Mars Choose-Your-Reality style dream involving eating pigeons, junkie girlfriends, ram raiding pubs and dressing up as a giant chicken.

Nigel's twisted life story seemed the most interesting, and since he was adopted I could do whatever I want... plus Guitar Hero is Shit was a true basis for YOA exploration.

But never fear my own Worst Party Ever will be used in due course.

But mainly I was trying to work on a character that could convincingly be the Father of Nigel yet be different. So basically he's Nigel with less tact and a tendency for GBH when annoyed... Maybe he needs more work.

Jared "No Nickname" Hansen said...

But.. Nigel was conceived in the late `90s? Or is this a Nigel in a B7-style dystopian future?

Youth of Australia said...

Yeah. Not sure about that. I think I was reacting to the fact Young Nigel is more a historical character (since his era of just-after-the-millennium is well and truly gone). I probably should stick to my guns and make it the late 80s. Mind you, that robs me a gag from Steve...

Man, this web connection is slow. is supposed to be about FINDING jobs not LOOKING at the little egg timer! Stupid Bill Gates. 21st century, Bertram, it’s where it all changes.

Jared "No Nickname" Hansen said...

It's fine as is. Just trying to get it clear in my head...

Youth of Australia said...

Well, I set the second bit properly in the mid-to-late 1980s anyway. Ah, the infinite creative flux...