The Job: Bobby Bloodhound

A PUBLIC PARK. BIRDS TWEET. PARENTS AND CHILDREN GATHER AND LOOK ON AT A SMALL GROUP OF STRANGELY DRESSED MEN AND WOMEN MAKING A MESS OF THE PLAYGROUND EQUIPMENT.

PERRY: (VOICE-OVER) Life is so… fragile, ya know? One moment, you’re here, binge-watching episodes of Quantum Leap. The next, people are finding your body in a shark cage suspended fifteen feet in the air, after having been the unwilling participant and prize in a Wrestler-on-a-Pole match between two rival factions, but then never let out of the cage because everyone else took off running when the fire marshall raided the place due to a lack of proper permits.

CUT TO:

“PRICKLY” PERRY PEARSON STANDS OUTSIDE THE MEN’S ROOM.

PERRY: I’m “Prickly” Perry Pearson, and we’re gathered here today to celebrate the life and career of our teacher, our friend, and our brother, Bobby Bloodhound.

CUT TO:

THE STRANGELY DRESSED MEN AND WOMEN GATHER AROUND A SMALL TOY WRESTLING RING WITH A MAKESHIFT URN IN THE CENTER.

PERRY: I first met Bobby when I was just twenty years old. I always dreamed of being a professional wrestler, and Bobby was the one who showed me the ropes. I mean that literally, too. My first day, Bobby charged me twenty dollars just to show me where they stored the ring ropes.

When I heard the news of Bobby’s passing, I knew we had to do something for him. So a bunch of us gathered up what little money we had and booked a show in Bobby’s honor at his second favorite stripclub.

Unfortunately, someone forgot to put down the deposit and we got bumped for a bachelorette party.

LIL’ PETE: (OFF) Sorry!

PERRY: Of course, that ultimately didn’t matter because someone else forgot to book the ring rental.

A PAUSE.

PERRY LOOKS AROUND, POINTS TO HIMSELF, GRIMACES.

CUT TO:

PERRY JOINS THE OTHER STRANGELY DRESSED MEN AND WOMEN AROUND THE TOY RING AND URN.

PERRY: Right. Where’s the ring bell?

EVERYONE LOOKS AT EVERYONE ELSE.

PERRY: So, we forgot the bell too? How are we supposed to do a ten-bell salute without a bell?

EVERYONE SHRUGS AND/OR NODS.

PERRY: Shit. (LOOKS AROUND) Hold on. I’ll be right back.

PERRY “RUNS” OFF.

CUT TO:

PERRY RETURNS WITH A TRASH BAG FULL OF CANS AND BOTTLES.

LIL’ PETE: What the hell is that?

PERRY: A trash bag full of cans and bottles, obviously.

LIL’ PETE: Isn’t that a bit disrespectful?

PERRY: We’re all here, dressed like a bunch of assholes in a public park, gathered around an old toy wrestling ring, with our dear friend’s ashes in an old shoebox, and all because we’ve utterly failed him in death as we failed him in life. So, I think we’re beyond having to worry about aesthetics, Lil’ Pete.

LIL’ PETE: Fair.

PERRY: Right… (CLEARS THROAT) We love you Bobby Bloodhound, we miss you, and we always will. Goodbye, Brother.

PERRY SHAKES THE BAG TEN TIMES, THE CANS AND BOTTLES RATTLE FROM WITHIN.

EVERYONE STANDS IN SILENT ATTENTION, INCREASINGLY EMOTIONAL WITH EVERY SHAKE AND RATTLE.

THE BAG TEARS OPEN ON THE LAST SHAKE, BOTTLES AND CANS SPILLING OUT EVERYWHERE.

PERRY: Shit.

Tickson Flea Market

A FLEA MARKET. ROBERT, CLOAKED IN ODD RAGS, SKULKS ABOUT THEIR BOOTH OF ASSORTED, YET UTTERLY UNSORTED, SORDID KNICKKNACKS.

ROBERT: (TO AUDIENCE) Hello, I’m Robert, the humble proprietor of this booth, located far too close to the dank closets they call restrooms here at the Tickson Flea Market. I offer to you an assortment of unsorted, yet sordid stories, a litany of lessons learned much too late, a plethora of pain and suffering, and a menagerie of morbid miscellaneous. But I must warn you, there are no refunds or exchanges.

A CUSTOMER ENTERS, PICKS UP SOMETHING FROM THE VARIOUS PILES.

CUSTOMER: How much is this?

ROBERT: Five dollars.

CUSTOMER: I’ll give you a buck for it.

A PAUSE.

ROBERT: Fine.

CUSTOMER: Cool.

CUSTOMER HANDS ROBERT A DOLLAR, EXITS.

ROBERT: (SHAKES HEAD) He’s really going to regret that when his genitals fall off. (TO AUDIENCE) As I was saying… Every item here is cursed by dark spirits, plagued by poltergeists…

CUSTOMER #2 ENTERS.

…varying moral quandaries, ethical whatevers, uncomfortable twists of fortune and nipple alike, and the occasional act of vengeance from beyond the grave. Nasty stuff, really.

CUSTOMER #2 HOLDS UP A VHS CASSETTE.

CUSTOMER #2: Excuse me.

ROBERT: Yes?

CUSTEROM #2: How much for the signed VHS copy of Masters of the Universe featuring Dolph Lundgren?

ROBERT: Fifty bucks, and your body will wither away with every passing moment until, by the time the credits roll, you’re only dust and bits of bone.

CUSTOMER #2: (CONSIDERS THIS) How do I know this is actually Frank Langella’s autograph?

ROBERT: Forty bucks.

CUSTOMER #2: I think I saw it going for thirty online.

ROBERT SNATCHES THE VHS COPY OF MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE FROM CUSTOMER #2’s HANDS.

ROBERT: Then you are welcome to get the hell out of my booth and make your unholy pact with the devil that is Ebay.

CUSTOMER #2 SHRUGS, LEAVES.

(TO AUDIENCE) Some people have no respect for the sanctity of the flea market. I have to make a living too, ya know. It’s not easy selling cursed items and harsh life lessons for reasonable prices. Not in this economy. In fact, just the other–

CUSTOMER #3 ENTERS.

CUSTOMER #3: I’m sorry, but can you point me to the restroom?

ROBERT: (GESTURES) Back the way you came, make a right at John’s Used Car Seats and Hair Products, and it’ll be there on your left. You’ll know it when you smell it.

CUSTOMER #3: Thank you.

CUSTOMER #3 EXITS.

ROBERT: (TO AUDIENCE) He wouldn’t thank me if he knew what it looked like in there.

Because You Know What

STEVE: We’ll return to more “You Know What? Because the Thing Is…” in just a moment. But first, a quick message from today’s sponsor, Regret.

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