With apologies to Tarantino, Avery and Rodriguez, and all the Jazz peeps that I know and love online that I've rolled into each character.
A COFFEE SHOP. EVENING. 2 JAZZ FANS ARE EATING POST GAME. PEACEFUL IS SIPPING A FLAT WHITE AND PICKING AT A BLUEBERRY MUFFIN, WHILE UPSET IS ATTACKING A STEAK AND FRIES WITH ANGRY DETERMINATION. BOTH ARE WEARING JAZZ FAN GEAR.
PEACEFULL: At least we tried something.
P: At least we tried something! A lineup change! They tried some...
- UPSET CUTS HIM OFF:
U: Well woop-de-do. Closing the gate after the horse has bolted.
P: Would you rather they did nothing?
U: No, I'd rather they did what we all want. The lineup changes I want
P: Yeah, well we are all 'experts,' right?
U: Are you getting snippy?
P: No. I'm not being snippy. I'm Peaceful. I'm merely stating fact. They tried SOMETHING.
U: Yeah, but we have all been screaming out for proper changes! Not benching Mr Consistent for the Golden Rook!
P: Will you concede that it was at least *something,* right?
U: Wasn't enough.
P: Ok, so first you are saying that we needed to make a change, now we do make one and it's not enough? I wish you would make up your mind, man
U: Oh look out, Mr Cool is losing his... cool! In fact, why are you taking this so well? we lost 4 games in a row, 3 of which were against teams we should murder!
P: I've got a new perspective on things. It's all well and good to be passionate, and discuss the ins and outs, but at the end of the day, really, what can I do about it?
U: Bahhh! Copout. It's a weak argument. Be passive, right? *GOADING LOOK*
PEACEFUL GIVES A SLIGHT SMILE
P: No, I'm not just talking about the Jazz, I'm talking about life, man.
U: So, this is a long-term change in your thinking, right? Months of contemplation and change, right?
P: No. I was just sitting here, drinking my coffee, eating my muffin and I I had what alcoholics refer to as a 'moment of clarity.' Let me explain...
U (PUTTING EATING IRONS DOWN): I need to pee. To be continued.
PEACEFUL KEEPS SIPPING HIS COFFEE AND TEARING OFF SMALL PIECES OF MUFFIN.
...MEANWHILE, A GUY AND GIRL JAZZ FAN STAND UP, AND PULL GUNS OUT OF THEIR BELTS
RINGO (YELLING): Everybody be cool, this is a robbery!
YOLANDA (EMOTIONAL): I've had enough of these losses, and now I'm taking it out on every last one of you!
RINGO AND YOLANDA PROCEED TO ROUND UP THE STAFF, EMPTY THE REGISTER, THEN THEY START MAKING THEIR WAY AROUND THE PATRONS COLLECTING THEIR VALUABLES. RINGO MAKES HIS WAY TO PEACEFULL'S BOOTH
R: Wallet and phone.
P: You can have the phone, and the money, but you can't have the wallet.
R (BRANDISHING GUN): Didn't you hear me?
P: Sorry, can't let you have that.
R: Come on man, you're a Jazz fan too, I've got the same jersey. Give it up, you know I'm emotionally unstable, that's 4 losses in a row, man...
P: No, sorry. You can't have my signed picture of me with Stock and Karl
R: Really? Open it up. Let me see. I'll count to 3, then I'll take it the hard way. 1...3...
P: Ok, you win.
PEACEFULL SPINS THE WALLET AROUND, AND OPENS IT UP. A GOLDEN LIGHT FILLS THE ROOM, REFLECTING ON RINGO'S FACE. HIS EXPRESSION CHANGES AS HE SEES THE CONTENTS. YOLANDA HAS WANDERED OVER NEARBY AFTER HEARING THE WORDS STOCK.
Y: Honey, is it as awesome as it sounds?
R: It's... beautiful...
WITH THE SPEED AND GRACE OF A NINJA PEACEFULL GRABS THE GUN FROM RINGO'S HAND, WHILE GRABBING HIM AND POINTING HIS OWN GUN AT HIS HEAD. YOLANDA LOSES HER S**T
Y (AGITATED) You let him go! You let him go or I'll shoot!
P: Tell your girl to chill! Tell her to chill the hell out!
R: Chill out, hunny bunny!
P: Tell her to chill!
R (FORCEFULLY) Chill, hunny bunny!
YOLANDA CONTINUES TO BABBLE WITH HYSTERICS.
P: What's her name?
P: Ok, Yolanda, chill out! Nobody's gonna get hurt! we're just gonna have a little conversation here. We're gonna be like 3 Fonzies here. And what's Fonzie like...?
P: Correctamundo! He's cool! So, everybody be cool. Now Ringo, I'll count to 3, and you'll sit down opposite me. And Yolanda, you'll put your gun down at the same time. 1,2,3.
RINGO SITS DOWN, YOLANDA DROPS HER GUN ON THE BENCHTOP.
P: Now Ringo. Normally I'd just kick your ass for doing this, but luckily you have caught me at a transitional phase in my life so I'm not going to hurt you. Instead, I'm gonna tell you a story, then let you go.
R: You're gonna let me go?
P: I'm gonna let you go.
I used to be like you. I followed my teams so passionately, so intensely that I burned with the fire of a thousand suns after a loss. Oh, I'd take to the internet and rage, hell, I even threw a laptop out a window once when I was watching a Liverpool soccer game. I thought to myself "I can see what they need to do, what they need to change, why don't they see?
Then one day after a particularly bad loss by Essendon, my Aussie Rules team, while I was taking part in a discussion online about what changes should be made when I realised what grounds do I have to suggest that?
Then I stopped and thought long and hard. I realised that I was eating myself up. What made it worse was that I was eating myself up about things outside of my control! I can't influence what the coaches do, or even what the players do. I was too quick to say that player X was being 'dumb' or 'smart' today, or that I could tell that player Y didn't give a crap by his body language... Ha! I'm not a mindreader! I'm not a psychologist! I don't know if he's trying to play through injury or not, and if that's affecting him! Man, I know there's days when I'm at work and I'm not 100% but I'm struggling through my day, I'd hate for 10,000 people I've never met to be sitting on the Internet and saying that I don't give a s**t and critiquing me! And don't get me started on this whole 'the amount they get paid they should do X' argument...
R (CUTTING PEACEFULL OFF) But it does! They get paid millions! They should...
P (CUTTING RINGO OFF): No! It's economies of scale, that's how they get paid. You can be paid a dollar or a million and still have a bad day at your job. And because someone gets well compensated for what they do it doesn't automatically give you the right to make very personal and harmful statements about them if you THINK they are underperforming! Constructive ones, yes, but not personal ones!
What I'm trying to say is... Yes, still discuss how you think your team could improve. Yes, discuss what you would do if you were in charge. But abusing each other, other fans, and making wild statements about the players, coaches and front office is nothing but destructive behaviour. Don't go down that path. Worry about what you can influence and control. There's bigger things in life than sports that put things into perspective; people losing their homes and businesses to calamity, people fighting terminal illness, those are the r eal things...
Now, I can't let you take the wallets. There's been too much sadness already today, too many good Jazz people getting upset and abusing each other. So, take the money I gave you and leave the rest. Even just my money is enough to make this a good score. Get out of here... and think about what I said...
PEACEFUL MOVES THE GUN AWAY FROM RINGO'S HEAD. RINGO GETS UP, GRABS THE CASH FROM THE TABLETOP AND LEAVES WITH YOLANDA, BOTH CRYING. MEANWHILE UPSET HAS EMERGED FROM THE BATHROOM...
U: I heard all that. It's a hard thing, man, when we care about something so deeply that we get mad at each other about it when it isn't going right.
P: Yeah... so imagine how bad those guys who CAN influence it are feeling?
U: Yeah... we had better go now. You just let 2 robbers go, and are holding a gun.
P: Good thinking.
THE 2 MEN GET UP AND WALK OUT OF THE DINER. FADES.