Thursday, April 29, 2010

A "SPY GUYS" Teaser!

From Page Five of the Pleasantview Poop Sheet, April thirtieth:

(The up-to-the-minute, complete-as-we-can-get-it, lowdown on Pleasantview's mad social whirl, contributed by Editor-in-Chief, staff reporter, and advertising director, "Dashing" Dewey Mellen! Proofreading provided by staff member Irene "Mom" Mellen!)

Hi, fans, here's old "Dashing Dewey" with whatever groovy gossip has crossed my desk in the past twenty-four hours. And HEY! How did that HAM SANDWICH get in here, ha-ha!
Rumor has it: This roving reporter has been repeatedly hearing stories that dark storm clouds have arisen in the personal lives of the team of Simpson & Lynch at the Simpson/Lynch Studios. First we heard that the Foxster's paramour, the lovely and perky Tara King, went ballistic and decided to go splitsville. Then we heard that the Skipster's fiancée, the fetching Gretchen Von Grüber, suddenly called off their engagement for an undisclosed reason. The local buzz mentions a lot of yelling, suicide attempts, and guns fired into the ceiling, but these stories remain largely unsubstantiated. Repeated calls by this intrepid reporter have been repeatedly ignored.

Seen about town: Pleasantview Community Hospital's own Dr. Jane Kildeer, on the arm of... no one! That's right! The red-tressed temptress is evidently Pleasantview's Most Eligible Bachelorette. And here's a tip for all you younger guys to try your luck, as the dollish doctor is apparently not interested in men her own age and/or older, judging from a few subtle attempts by this reporter to score a home run in that particular ballpark.

Here's an item directed at those wacky, zany, party-going manly-men types here in Pleasantview: According to the Assistant Manager of Kewl Beanz!, Bella Vergara, there is no "other" in her life, significant or otherwise, ha-ha! Looks like this cuddly Colombian is Pleasantview's Most Eligible Bachelorette.

A lot of you have asked me what the Poop's scoop is on the new brick building on the Pleasantview/Porterview line, Global Telecommunications. That's the new one with the big antenna and huge satellite dishes in the backyard, and the helicopter on the roof.

Well, as it turns out, it is not a place to pay your cell phone or cable bills. Whatever they do there, it's pretty boring, according to Global Telecommunications' receptionist, Pleasantview's own Annabell-Lee Pleasant. Miss Pleasant, who was known variously as "Chipmunk Cheeks," "Wide Glide," and "Buffy" when she attended Pleasantview High School just a few short years ago, was cordial but otherwise standoffish with this reporter, no doubt forgetting that when she was a drab and unpopular high school senior, a certain advisor to the Yearbook Staff went out of his way to make her feel wanted and appreciated, for all the good it ever did him! Of course, that was before certain school board officials, and one Superintendent of Schools who shall remain nameless, unfairly decided that this Yearbook Staff Advisor and English Teacher was stepping beyond the bounds of propriety in reaching out to many of the lonely, overweight, and unpopular female students in his heart-felt attempts to make them feel a sense of self-value, suggesting instead that he devote all of his time to that "silly little newspaper" he'd inherited from his late father, Crenshaw Mellen.

Anyway, I hope Miss Pleasant will realize someday that it takes more than a stylish make-over and an unhealthy reliance on the family name to make her a candidate for anything above and beyond this apparently dead-end job.

Finally, I must mention that yesterday's item about a budding romance between Town Clerk Carol Brady and Mayor Calvin T. Burnside was totally unfounded. This is according to repeated calls from Miss Brady, Mayor Burnside's Office, and the Law Offices of Flarn, Flarn, Flarn, & Felth. So it looks like Miss Brady is still Pleasantview's Most Eligible Bachelorette!

As Bugs Bunny always says, "That's All, Folks!" Tune in tomorrow for more Doings from Dashing Dewey, and I'll try to finish that HAM SANDWICH, ha-ha!

* * * * *

And Coming May 4th:

Sunday, April 25, 2010


Scene One: Vickie Wickie has just called Milo Fenderbender. We see each of them in their respective homes as they speak on the telephone. It is early morning as Milo answers.

Milo: Vickie! Hi!

Vickie (cheerfully): Good morning, Milo! How's it goin', old buddy?

Milo: Vickie?!? Uhhh... "Old buddy?" (pause) Have you been drinking?

Vickie (laughing): Nope! (brief pause) How's life at Kewl Beanz! lately?
(brief pause)
Seen much of Tara? (Vickie chuckles.)

Milo: No, actually, not since a couple of nights ago, when you called me to say she'd gone missing. Bella says she took a few days off, for "personal reasons." (brief pause) Spill it, girl, what do you know that I apparently don't know?

Vickie: Heh. Don't expect her to show up again, ever! She and the fuzzy Fox had a biiiig blow-out! They've apparently split up! (Vickie laughs.) Nobody's even seen him, or her, for a few days! What's that expression you like to use, "I love it when a plan comes together?"

Milo: What "plan?" We can't take any credit for that!

Vickie: Awww, don't underestimate yourself, Milo! Whoever she was with that night -- before she finally dragged her sorry little well-shagged ass home -- the Foxster evidently assumes it was you!

Milo: You're in awfully good spirits.

Vickie: I certainly am! (brief pause) Just watched my baby boa have his breakfast, too. (pause) And today, Milo, m'dear, I hope to put the finishing touches on my plan, the one I've been working on for weeks!

Milo: Which is...?

Vickie: I have planted more than half a dozen phony "clues" for "Gretch the Wretch," to make her think the Skipster and I have been sleeping together behind her back.
And she's so gullible, I'm betting she's believed every single one... at least the ones that she's been bright enough to notice! I'm also betting she hasn't had the guts to say anything to old "Skip-to-my-Lou" about any of them! (Vickie laughs loudly.)

Milo (hopefully, after a long pause): I don't suppose...?

You want to know if I'm in the mood for "the old Fenderbender Treatment?" (
to herself, aloud, laughing) I can't believe I just said that! (to Milo) Tell you what, Milo, if everything goes well this afternoon, I just may grant your sleazy little wish!

Milo: Sweet! (brief pause) What exactly do you have planned for "this afternoon?"

Vickie: The Skipster is supposed to help me with -- believe it or not -- my freakin' golf game. And I know little Gretchie-poo will be lurking around somewhere! So, unless I'm "busy" for real with the Skipster himself tonight... heh... I may invite you to my digs to... celebrate!

Milo: Mmm! Good luck to both of us, then!

Vickie: I can't speak for you, Milo, but I make my own luck! (cheerfully) Ta-ta! (Vickie disconnects.)

* * * * *

Scenes Two and Three: "Pleasantview, Season One" Opening Credits and "Vickie, Victorious!!!"

* * * * *

What Next, You Wonder?!?

Hey, Don't Ask Us!!! We Only Write This Blog!!!

Coming Up Is a Little "Teaser," Actually...

(Well, kinda!)

And Thennnn...

Coming on May 4th:

And Cheer Up! At Least We're Not Giving You THIS:

"Thanks for Your Time, Fellow Babies," and... "Vootie!!!"

Thursday, April 22, 2010

"I Hope There's No GUN in the House!"

Scene One: Saturday, shortly after three a.m. and only a few minutes after Vickie Wickie received her phone call from the Foxster, as shown in our previous post. Vickie calls Milo Fenderbender at his home.

Vickie: Milo?

Milo (sounding groggy): Of course. Why are you calling at this time of... (hopefully, after a pause) Not feeling... lonely, are you?

Vickie: Get real. (brief pause) Are you alone?

Milo: Of course I'm... I mean, why do you ask?

Vickie: Is Tara with you, by any chance?

Milo: No! Why?

Vickie: I just got a pathetic call from the equally-pathetic Foxster. Tara never went home after work. (brief pause) Were you at Kewl Beanz! tonight?

Milo: For a bit, yeah. (pause) She was still there when I left. No idea what's going on, though, sorry.

Vickie: I tried to convince him to rifle her contacts on her cell phone... which the little bimbo left at the bar. I almost feel sorry for whoever she did end up with when he finds them!

Milo (after a long pause): Ohhhhh, boy. I hope he doesn't show up here.

Vickie: Why would he show up at your place? And does he even know where you live?

Milo: No, but he could find out easily enough. (pause) If he took your advice, I'm betting he saw my name on her contacts list.

Vickie: Really.

Milo: Yeah. I got hold of her private number -- via my usual connections, you know -- and called her yesterday afternoon! But when I called, she was a bit... frosty. (imitating Tara's voice mockingly) "Nothing personal, Milo, but if ever you want to call me again, I'd appreciate it if you reach me on the bar phone... or call the Simpson/Lynch Studios number."

Vickie: Well, whenever she does get her trampy little ass home, I hope there's no gun in the house! Ol' Foxy was really pissed off! (pause) Go back to bed, Milo. (Vickie disconnects.)

* * * * *

Scene Two: "The Old Fenneman Estate," current home of the Foxster and his girlfriend, Tara King. It is approximately 4:30 that same morning.

Tara enters the house through the living room door. A small light is suddenly turned on by the Foxster, who has been sitting in the dark since shortly after waking up from a nightmare. He is holding a half-empty glass of milk, Tara notices.

Foxster (calmly): Where have you been?

Tara (surprised): Ohmigods, David! You almost scared me to death!

Foxster: We're even, then. I tried calling you, first...

Tara: Sorry. I don't have my cell phone. I don't know where I left it...

Foxster (continuing): I called Kewl Beanz!, and then I actually went there. I called Bella. I called Vickie.

Tara: Vickie? (sarcastically) Oh, nice.

Foxster: Don't you dare try to twist this around! (pause) I even called the hospital!

Tara: You called the... (pause) Why?

Foxster (standing): I had visions of you being in a horrible accident in the BMW I bought for you only last week! (pause) Where have you been?

Tara remains silent as the Foxster enters the kitchen and turns on the light. He uncaps his new bottle of Valium -- as prescribed by Dr. Jane Kildeer -- and takes two, washing them down with the glass of milk which he still holds. Finally, Tara speaks.

Tara: I... I had someplace to go.

Foxster (with an edge in his voice): No kidding, Tara! You're purposely being evasive, and I won't play that game. Where the hell were you?

Tara: Please, David, trust me on this one. I can't tell you. You have to respect that, okay?

Foxster (shouting, as he angrily throws the empty glass of milk into the sink, where it shatters): Are you kidding?!? "Trust" and "respect" aren't even in my vocabulary right now! (pause) You were with... him... weren't you?

Tara (nervously): "Him?" (pause) Wh-who do you mean?

Foxster: You know damned well who I mean! Milo!

Tara: Milo? Milo?!?

Foxster: Who else?

Tara: What the hell makes you think I was with Milo?

The Foxster removes Tara's cell phone from the pocket of his pajama shirt and holds it up, somewhat dramatically.

Foxster : You left this at the bar. (pause) And against my better judgment... I checked your contacts list.

Tara (exploding): You did what?!? I don't believe this! Where the hell did you get an idea like that? (The Foxster says nothing, not wanting to mention Vickie again.) How dare you?!?

Foxster (re-entering the living room): Well, excuse me for being worried! And maybe I'll apologize... after I hear your explanation!

Tara: You can shove your "explanation," Foxster! (brief pause) Gimme that cell phone! I am so outta here!

Foxster: I think I'll keep it... since I'm paying for it!

Tara: Fine! You can have your stupid cell phone! Maybe you can give it to the next set of pretty legs you fall for!

Foxster: Fine! Maybe I will!

Tara: And don't worry, I'll have the BMW delivered to you after I get... wherever I'm going!

Without another word, Tara exits, slamming the door behind her and departing for... parts unknown.

Trembling with rage, the Foxster attempts to control his breathing. He turns on his rare, unrestored Philco radio as he passes it on his way back to the kitchen, letting it warm up as he gets himself another glass of milk to wash down another Valium.

The Foxster returns after taking his third tranquilizer. WPLJ-AM, the local Pleasantview oldies station, is playing "Love Hurts" by Roy Orbison. The Foxster is all-too-briefly soothed by Orbison's voice... until he recognizes the song, whereupon he screams an unintelligible exclamation of anguish and viciously kicks the radio over onto its side. Tubes shatter and sparks fly as the valuable antique breathes its last.

The radio is silent now... as is the Foxster. After several minutes of listening to the pounding in his chest, he walks back into the kitchen, empties his bottle of Valium into his hand, and stands at the sink, staring at them...

* * * * *

To Be Continued Concluded!

Next: Things get even WORSE in the final chapter!!! We DARE you to read "VICKIE, VICTORIOUS!!!"

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Scene One: Saturday morning, approximately three a.m., less than twenty-four hours after the events of our previous post. The Foxster stands in the closed and darkened lounge area of Kewl Beanz!, alone.

The Foxster calls Bella Vergara, the assistant manager of Kewl Beanz!, from the bar phone.

Bella: Hello? Who is this? (pauses and checks her caller ID, reading "Kewl Beanz.") Tara?

Foxster: No, Bella... It's the Foxster. I'm terribly sorry to call at this ungodly hour, but...

Bella (interrupting): Is Tara all right?

Foxster: Uhhh... That's why I'm calling you. She never came home last night... I mean, this morning... after work! I tried calling her first, of course, several times... but she doesn't have her phone with her.

Bella: She left it at the bar...

Foxster: I know. I found it when I came here. (pause) So, you don't know where she is, either?

Bella: No, I'm sorry. (pause) She left in a big hurry, right before closing. She didn't tell me anything.

Foxster: Damnit! (pause) Okay, Bella, thanks anyway. And I'm so sorry I woke you!

Bella: It's all right. Good luck, and... Let me know when you find out anything?

Foxster: Of course. Goodnight. (Foxster disconnects.)

The Foxster calls Vickie Wickie.

Vickie (groggy, but angry): Who the [expletive deleted] is this?!?

Foxster: Vickie, this is the Foxster!

Vickie: Oh! I'm so sorry! I didn't even check...

Foxster (interrupting): Forget it, it's okay. (brief pause) Do you know where Tara is?

Vickie: Tara? Uhhh... Don't take this the wrong way, Mr. Foxster, but... Why would I?

Foxster (after a pause): Oh, hell... I don't know. (pause) I guess I'm just grasping at straws. She didn't come home after work, and I'm frantic.

Vickie: Maybe she's visiting Gretchen? I know it's late, but...

Foxster: No. In fact, I was visiting with Gretchen and the Skipster until almost two a.m.! I was home for a bit, and when she didn't show, I came here, and called Bella, and then... I called you.

Vickie: Doesn't Tara answer her phone?

Foxster: She doesn't have her phone. She left the bar in a rush, according to Bella, and didn't take it. In fact, I have it here.

Vickie: You could... (long pause) You could always check her contacts or messages, or...?

Foxster: Oh, I couldn't do that! That would be... an invasion of privacy, to say the least.

Vickie: Mr. Foxster... David... You know damned well that Tara and I don't exactly belong to each other's fan clubs... although even I've noticed she's seemed kind of distracted lately, and... (pause) Anyway, I know how important she is to you. And you're obviously worried sick. At this point, anything that might give you peace of mind is a good thing! (pause) You should really check her phone.

Foxster: I dunno... (pause) Anyway, I'm really sorry I woke you for nothing.

Vickie: "Nothing?" Don't be silly. You can call me any time. (pause) Any time. You're not only my boss, but... well... We are friends, aren't we?

Foxster: Yeah... Of course. (The Foxster tries to lighten the mood.) So stop calling me "Mister Foxster."

Vickie: Okay... Foxster. Good luck finding Tara... whether or not you do check her phone. And any time you want someone to talk to... I'll be there for you.

Foxster: Thanks, Vickie. Get some sleep, okay?

Vickie: Goodnight, Foxster. (The Foxster disconnects.) Friggin' idiot.

The Foxster stands quietly in the bar area for several minutes, lost in his thoughts. Finally, he picks up Tara's phone, and does some "investigating." He sees a name on the contacts list, and scowls.

Foxster: Son of a bitch...!

* * * * *

Scene Two: The bedroom in the home of the Foxster, sometime after four a.m. The Foxster has finally gotten to sleep, but only after calling Pleasantview Community Hospital's ER.

Next: Things get worse! Don't miss "I Hope There's No GUN in the House!"

Friday, April 16, 2010

Trouble in Paradise???

Scene One: The main lounge area of Kewl Beanz! in Pleasantview. It is late Friday morning, only a few minutes before the business will open for the day. Various staff members are tidying up the place here, as well as upstairs in the room known as "Krebs' Krib," or doing prep work in the kitchen. Kewl Beanz! manager Tara King begins chatting with her assistant, Bella Vergara, who has just arrived.

Tara: Bella! Hi!

Bella: Sorry I wasn't here sooner, Tara. My babysitter was late.

Tara: No problem. I have plenty of extra help on, as you can see. If this weekend is anything like last weekend, we're gonna need them all! (brief pause) Hope you're prepared to work late tonight.

Bella: Yes. I can't believe how busy we've been since Mr. Cabana's engagement ended!

Tara: I know... It's like they're all making up for the two weeks they stayed away!

As Tara and Bella laugh, Gretchen Von Grüber enters the lounge.

Tara: Ohmigods! Gretchen!

Gretchen walks swiftly toward Tara, and the two embrace briefly. Bella laughs.

Bella: You two act like you haven't seen each other for ages! (to Gretchen) Didn't you and your fiancé come back from your vacation a couple of weeks ago?

Gretchen: Yes, but Tara and I have not seen each other until now! (Tara nods in agreement as Gretchen extends her hand toward Bella.) And you must be... Isabella?

Bella (shaking Gretchen's hand): Yes, but please, call me "Bella." I'm so glad to meet you, Gretchen. Tara's always talking about you.

Gretchen: I love your accent! It is South American?

Bella (smiling and nodding): Yes. Colombian. (brief pause) And I love your accent, too!

Gretchen: Thank you. It is German.

Bella (laughing): I know! You're the "titanic Teutonic!" (Gretchen and Tara laugh.) I used to read everything I could get my hands on about all of the SnL staff, before Tara hired me. Women's Wear Thursday, Peeps, Moolah Magazine... even the so-called social pages of the Pleasantview Poop Sheet!

Tara: That's the dork who keeps misspelling Gretchen's last name as "Van Grüber!" (Tara, Gretchen, and Bella laugh.)

Gretchen (to Tara): I know you are busy, but could we talk for a few minutes?

Tara: Sure! Bella, if you don't mind...?

Bella: Of course not. Don't be silly. Everything's under control here. (jokingly, to Tara) Just don't take too long.

Tara (smiling): Hey, since when did you become the boss? (Tara, Bella and Gretchen laugh, as Tara and Gretchen walk to a nearby table and sit.)

Tara: I am so out of the loop since David and I moved into our own place! And I've been working so many hours here...

Gretchen (nodding): My Skip has been keeping me busy, too! I am hardly home. He has been having me make many arrangements for new movie production studio he and Foxster plan to build here in Pleasantview.

Tara: That, I knew about. In fact, it was David who found out about that abandoned dirigible hangar when he was downtown talking to Carol Brady about some minor details concerning our new place.

Gretchen: I have been arranging details with builders for new office building on same property. (pause) And I must see new house you share with Foxster!

Tara: Definitely. Soon as we can swing it. You'll love it... Although it seems like I spend most of my time there in bed!

Gretchen (blushing): Tara... This is too much information!

Tara (laughing): No, sweetie, I meant that after I get out of here every night -- this place is booming and I haven't had a day off since I don't know when -- all I want to do is sleep!

Gretchen: Same with myself. Uncle Kris has left message after message, but I have only spoken with him once or two times on telephone, and too briefly.

Tara: And I am dying to hear about your vacation, naturally...

Gretchen: It was idealic!

Tara (smiling): I think the word you're looking for is "idyllic," hon.

Gretchen: Not "idealic?" But... our time in Hawaii was ideal...

Tara (grinning): Never mind. (pause) Actually, now that I finally have you here, I wanted to discuss my book with you.

Gretchen: That is right! I saw Foxster for a few minutes some days ago, and he tell... told... Skip and me you have love story published soon! He was so very proud! Tell me about story, please!

Tara: No time right now... But I'm hoping things will get a little less hectic for both of us soon. My publisher wants to send me on a little tour to publicize my novel, and I was hoping you could accompany me?

Gretchen: Ohhh, Tara... I do not know! So much is happening in business right now.

Tara: I understand. Believe me, I do! But Bella's really busting her tail here, and catching on rapidly, and I was hoping...

Gretchen: Also... (long pause) I do not know if it is good idea for me to be away from home again. Not for too long a time. (pause) And not while Skip is here, without me.

Tara: Meaning what, exactly?

Gretchen: Since I am back in Pleasantview, funny things have happened.

Tara: "Funny?"

Gretchen: "Funny," like "strange." (pause) Tara... I know you are very smart. Sometimes I think that in many ways you are smarter than Foxster, or even my Skipster. You teach me fluid English in very few months.

Tara (smiling): "Fluid?" You mean "fluent."

Gretchen (nodding): I know, my English still has little grinches...

Tara (laughing): That's "glitches," sweetie! (Gretchen nods.) Damn! Maybe I'm not as smart as you think. (pause) That was a joke, hon. (Gretchen nods again, seriously. Tara sighs.) Okay... What's wrong?

Gretchen's eyes begin watering.

Gretchen: Do you think Skip could be... losing love for me, so soon?

Tara: Oh, I doubt that. What makes you ask?

Gretchen: Do you think he could find new love with... Vickie?

Tara (bristling): That skinny little wretch? Ohmigods, you can't be serious!

Gretchen: I see them. They are... friendly. They get along very well now. Too well for me to find comfort. And one day, Luke brought me home from downtown, and I see Vickie in hallway, leaving conference room. She had been alone with Skip. And as she pass me, I notice her dress was not zipped up all the way to the top!

Tara: Oh, hell. That happens sometimes. Haven't you ever had a dress with a troublesome zipper? I certainly have.

Gretchen: True, but... One other day, I find earring outside of my bedroom door, on floor in hallway. The earring was Vickie's.

Tara: Uhhh... She could have lost it on her way to... ummm...

Gretchen: Tara, I am scared!

Tara: Well, did you tell Skip you were worried?

Gretchen (laughing bitterly): Tara! I am not like you! I do not confront people.

Tara: Well... Maybe you'd better make an exception just this once, before you go jumping to any conclusions.

Gretchen: It is not like me to do that. To confront others, I mean.

Tara: Please, sweetie, talk to the Skipster before you do anything you'll be sorry for later. This could all be totally innocent. (brief pause) In fact, I'm sure it is.

Gretchen (standing): I wish that I could be as certain of this as you are. (pause) I must go now. I have many duties today. (pause) We can talk later, I hope?

Tara: I'll try, but today -- and tonight -- are gonna be pretty damned hectic for me, too. (pause) Just take my advice and tell Skip how you feel, okay?

Gretchen: I... shall try. Good-bye.

Gretchen begins walking toward the exit. Tara rises and starts to follow, but her cell phone rings.

Tara: Damnit! Who the...?

Tara looks at the name on the caller ID with surprise, as Gretchen exits.

* * * * *

To Be Continued! Next: Things get worse.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Barry's Bon Voyage!

From Page Two of the Pleasantview Poop Sheet, April fifth:


(article contributed by Editor-in-Chief, staff reporter, and advertising director, Dewey Mellen)

Singer Barry "Mr. Broadway" Cabana has just completed a disappointing two-week engagement at local attraction Cool Beans. Mr. Cabana, who is apparently not dead as had been reported elsewhere, performed many of his old standards, as well as those of many other, more well-known singers, during his two-weekend jig.

When asked for further details, Isabella Viagra, assistant manager of Cool Beans, stated that the nightclub's receipts were not severely affected, as most regular patrons were inclined to bypass Mr. Cabana's shows by going instead to the second-floor room they call Creb's Crib, which is soundproofed. Miss Viagra was quoted as saying "Our receipts were not severely affected, as most regular patrons were inclined to bypass Mr. Cabana's shows by going instead to the second-floor room we call Creb's Crib, which is soundproofed."

When this reporter attempted to question two of the nightclub's regular patrons, a Mr. Frank Emt and a Mr. Milo Minderbinder, both replied with no comment. Mr. Emt was quoted as saying "No comment," and Mr. Minderbinder was quoted as saying "Get that ****ing camera out of my face, ****head."

* * * * *

From the Next-to-the-Last Page of the Pleasantview Poop Sheet, One Day Later:

Correction: The Pleasantview Poop Sheet staff would like to list some minor corrections to yesterday's second page article. The Kewl Beanz! restaurant, nightclub, and coffeehouse was inadvertently misspelled as Cool Beans. The room identified as Creb's Crib is actually known as Krebs' Krib. Mr. Cabana does not perform Irish jigs; the word this reporter had unsuccessfully searched for was gig. The gentleman named as Mr. Frank Emt is actually an EMT named Frank; no last name was given to this reporter. According to Kewl Beanz! manager Tara King, the gentleman named as Mr. Milo Minderbinder is actually named Milo Fenderbender. Miss Isabella Vergara was misidentified as Isabella Viagra, an understandable error considering her effect on this reporter. Additionally, we regret that our newspapers of 3/21/1998, 12/27/2002, and 7/03/2007 all contained obituaries for Mr. Cabana. Other than these small points, the Pleasantview Poop Sheet stands by the integrity of its original article.

* * * * *

Scene One: The "break room" of Kewl Beanz!, where Barry Cabana sits alone on a sofa, two suitcases at his feet. Barry is silent, sedate, and uncharacteristically sober. Assistant Manager Isabella "Bella" Vergara enters.

Bella: Mr. Cabana?

Barry: Please, Bella... Barry. (Bella smiles and nods.) And... I hope I didn't come across as too much of a di- I mean, too much of a jerk while I was here.

Bella: Well, you had your moments... Barry. (Bella laughs.) But don't worry. I've dealt with many men who have been a lot more... flirtatious... than you! (pause) The SnL limousine has arrived to bring you to the airport.

Barry: Thanks, babe. (brief pause) I'm glad it'll just be me and Luke for the long drive. At least he's not ticked off at me.

Bella: Not exactly...

Barry (standing): Oh? Who's with him? Skip? David?

Bella: Actually, Barry... Luke isn't driving at all. It's Tara. And she's alone.

Barry: Uh-oh... (recovering) I mean.. Oh, good!

Bella smiles knowingly as Barry struggles to lift his suitcases. Shaking her head in anticipation of his protests, Bella takes the suitcases from him and the two exit the break room.

* * * * *

Scene Two: The interior of the Simpson/Lynch Studios limousine. Tara has been driving, with Barry sitting up front next to her, for nearly twenty minutes. Neither of them has spoken.

Tara: Why so quiet, Barry? It's certainly not like you.

Barry (softly): Oh... I dunno...

Tara: I won't bite. (Tara waits for some sort of double-entendre wisecrack from Barry, which doesn't come.) No, really. Why so quiet?

Barry: Uhhh... Where's Luke? I kinda expected him to be taking me to Montgomery. (pause) I like that kid.

Tara: Yeah, he's a sweetie. And he likes you, too... But I asked if he'd mind if I brought you. (pause) You haven't answered my question, Barry. Why so quiet?

Barry: Truthfully? (Tara nods.) I've just been waiting for you to lay into me for... everything.

Tara: Everything, like...?

Barry: The poor attendance at my shows, for one thing. I must have killed your profits...

Tara: Oh, don't worry, it'll take more than that to sink Kewl Beanz! (pause) Sorry. That wasn't very tactful.

Barry: But very much in character... if you don't mind my saying so.

Tara: Not at all. I'm not really known for being tactful. (pause) I believe one of your little nicknames for me was... "Tara-dactyl?" (Barry winces and nods.)

Barry (after a pause): Everyone at Kewl Beanz! and the studio was so accepting, or at least tolerant, of whatever I did, and... Well, I figure if anyone's gonna...

Tara: "Lay into you?"

Barry (nodding): It'd be you. (pause) Even when I drunkenly trashed the studio, Skip and Gretchen helped Luke clean up my mess with hardly a complaint, and then David -- your "Foxster" -- discovered that I'd drunk his whole bottle of Jack Daniel's green label...

Tara (interrupting): Barry. You drank his whole case. (pause) I suppose that was my fault for forgetting his liquor when I had everything else packed up for the move to our new house.

Barry (chuckling): Yeah, right. It was all your fault. I only drank every freakin' drop of what was there. Totally your fault.

Tara (smiling): So, why wait until now to apologize? (brief pause) I mean, assuming this is some sort of apology.

Barry: It is. I guess it's just... (pause) Some people care more about their first impression on people than they do about what people think of them after they're gone. (pause) I guess I've always been the opposite. I'm more worried about what people will say about me after I'm... gone.

Tara (seriously): And by "gone," do you mean, after you've left, or after you've...?

Barry: Died? (Tara nods.) Heh. Both, I guess.

Tara: Barry... You ever consider trying to make a good impression at both ends of a visit?

Barry (after a long pause): Tara... You are wise beyond your years.

Tara: Yeah, well, I'm a lot older than I look.

Barry: Old? You wanna talk old? How old do you think I am?

Tara: Uhhh...

Barry: Okay, doll, I'll rephrase that. How old do I look? Like, not so much up close, but when I'm on the stage?

Tara: You could pass for forty, forty-five. (pause) Really.

Barry: Ha! Thanks. I was older than that when I met David, fifteen years or so ago. (pause) But after three face lifts, and a lot of shoe polish...

Tara: "Shoe polish?"

Barry: That's what I call my hair dye. (Tara laughs.) Without it, my hair's as white as Gretchen's uncle, Kris Von Grüber's, is.

Tara: You know Uncle Kris?

Barry: No... but I've seen his band perform in Vegas. (brief pause) I like all kinds of music.

Tara: Oh. I hadn't realized you were still headlining in Las Vegas.

Barry: Headlining? Oh, please! I was only in Vegas. Seeing a few shows. Drinking and gambling. (pause) Mainly drinking. (pause) I'm lucky to get a gig on a freakin' "old folks" cruise.

Tara: Oh.

Barry: That's why I jumped at the chance to play Pleasantview when David called me. Twenty, thirty years ago I would have laughed at the offer. (pause) I don't really laugh much nowadays...

There is an uncomfortable silence for several minutes.

Tara: Is it okay if I ask you something, Barry?

Barry: Oh, sure.

Tara: When you... "trashed the studio," as you put it... You weren't alone. There was that homeless man...

Barry: Yeah. "Gabby."

Tara: Yes...

Barry (smiling): "Gabby" Pleasant. Nice guy. (pause) Did you know the town of Pleasantview is named for his family?

Tara: Actually, I did. (pause) How did he get there?

Barry: How? Well, I invited him, of course.

Tara: Sorry, I meant, why did you invite him?

Barry: I ran into him outside of Kewl Beanz! one evening, before my gig actually began, and figured he could use a roof over his head, at least for a few nights... and a bath... and a meal or two or three... and... (pause) I guess I just kinda said to myself, "There but for the grace of God go I," you know what I mean...

Tara (emotionally): Yeah... Yes. I know what you mean. (long pause) Barry, not many people know this, but... before Luke and I came to Pleasantview... we were homeless. Both of us. In Florida. That's how he and I met.

Barry: Oh!

Tara (her voice trembling): And there were plenty of nights that we both would have appreciated someone like you to...

Barry: Help you trash a studio?

Tara (wiping her eyes as Barry pretends not to notice): Something like that.

There is another, longer silence, as Tara drives Barry the rest of the way to the airport... but this silence is not uncomfortable at all.

* * * * *

Scene Three: Montgomery Regional Airport. Tara and Barry are saying their good-byes.

Tara: Okay, you! Get your skinny butt on that plane, and remember what I told you: Be yourself whenever possible, and save that "Mr. Broadway" sh- I mean, crap... (Barry laughs.) for when you're under the spotlights! I know you didn't ask for my advice... In fact, David always says he hates it when people give advice unless they're asked...

Barry: Still? He was like that when I met him, too!

Tara: Creature of habit, I guess!

Barry laughs again, and holds out his right hand for a good-bye handshake. Ignoring it, Tara leans forward, grabbing Barry by the back of his head so she can pull him slightly toward her as she plants a kiss on his left cheek. Barry is somewhat surprised and even flustered; his eyes open wide.

Barry: Umm... Careful, kid, you don't want to get any "shoe polish" on you!

Tara (laughing): Who cares? (brief pause) Now go!

Barry (backing away from her and waving): See you around, gorgeous!

Tara: You can count on it.

Barry walks away.