The Old Hat.

I used to be in a film club back in college. Our first year we struggled to complete a short film. I must have wrote this script about three to four years ago. The only locations available to film in were the college so I tried to think of a college story that could happen. Out came this script. We didn’t end up shooting this script. I can’t recall what we did instead, but I learned a lot from writing this little script. So I’m posting it.

FADE IN:
INT. SMITHSONIAN HALL – DAY

The inside of a standard college educational building. Recently painted white walls, and bland grey tiles. COLLEGE STUDENTS rush out of classrooms.

STEPH LEAF, 18, a brunette girl, walks a bit behind everyone. She stuffs her notebook into her dull purple purse. Suddenly a HAND grabs her arm!

She is whisked away into a dark, isolated corner where the lights are dim.

A HOODED FIGURE spins her around.

ERIC
It’s gone.

STEPH
Eric?

The man pulls his hood down REVEALING that he is ERIC DERING, 19, a Yankees fanatic who acts half his age.

Steph covers her mouth and averts her eyes! It’s the worst bed head that’s ever been in this or any universe. His hair stands on its edges, like he’s out of a Japanese anime.

Eric pulls the hood back down and starts banging his head into a nearby wall.

ERIC
I’m nothing without that hat. Nothing. Nothing. Nothing.

Eric bangs his head into the nearby wall.

STEPH
Stop!

Eric slumps to the floor. Steph sits down next to him.

STEPH (CONT’D)
Can’t you get another one?

ERIC
Yeah right, Steph! Another 1962 Vintage Yankees hat? Like my grandfather just has another one of those lying around, Steph! Oh gosh. What if my grandad finds out? He’ll kick me out of his will or worse, he’ll tell grandma! And she’ll tell Aunt Tes. And she’ll tell Uncle Riley. And then he’ll say “Not now I’m watching the game!” I HAVE TO FIND THAT HAT, STEPH! WHERE IS MY HAT?! OH GOD! WHERE DID I LEAVE IT!

Eric’s freaking out! Steph grabs him!

STEPH
Chill! Can you do that?! Please. Stay chill and I’ll help you find it!

Eric nods his head. Steph lets go of him. Eric opens his mouth wide. Steph stares him down. Eric shuts his mouth.

STEPH (CONT’D)
Be cool.

ERIC
But-

STEPH
When did you notice it was gone?

ERIC
This morning. I can’t

STEPH
Okay. Run me through your daily routine.

INT. ERIC’S ROOM – THIS MORNING
We see Eric sleeping in his bed. His room is disturbingly filled with Yankees Memorabilia. His walls are plastered with Yankees posters from the franchise’s history. His sheets are Yankee sheets. His chair has a giant Yankee TEDDY BEAR on it. Eric’s fast asleep under the covers with his butt in the air.

ERIC (V.O.)
My usual routine for Monday. First I wake up for my morning class. I get up and make my bed first thing. I wan to start my day off good.

STEPH (V.O.)
Mmm hmm.

An alarm goes off and it scares the bejeesus out of him!

Eric flops out of bed like a fish. He’s only wearing underwear! Derek Jeter’s wide grin smiles from the center of his bum. He panics and runs right into his Yankee Teddy Bear. He holds his back in pain and limps toward the bathroom.

INT. ERIC’S BATHROOM- DAY
Eric’s bathroom is the same as his room, Yankees stuff. There’s even Yankees toothpaste.

ERIC (V.O.)
Then I like put on deodorant. And then like brush my teeth. And try to catch a quick shower.

Eric stumbles into the room, still holding his back. He gazes into the mirror and tries to fix his horrendous hair. He takes out SPRAY DEODORANT with Alex Rodriguez on the side of it.

It’s empty. He shrugs his shoulders and chucks it behind him. It lands on a large pile of empty canisters.

He grabs his toothbrush. He brushes vigorously, so vigorously that it FLIES out of his hands and straight into the toilet!

Eric glances down into the toilet bowl. It’s filthy. Greenish-brown with a yellow tint.

He PLUNGES his arm into the depths of the toilet, splashing water all over himself.


STEPH (V.O.)

Can you get to the hat already?

ERIC (V.O.)
Oh. Okay.

INT. ERIC’S ROOM – LAST MONDAY MORNING

ERIC (V.O.)
I usually keep it in a special safe place. Nobody would ever think to look.

Eric unzips the back of the teddy bear. He checks to see if anyone’s around then pulls THE HAT of it. The hat is beat up and has several stains of questionable origin on it.

Eric breathes in the scent of the hat. Then places it on his head like a crown. It covers his head completely. He looks like a normal person now. Eric walks out of the room, beaming.

INT. SMITHSONIAN HALL – DAY

STEPH
So you had the hat when you left your house today?

ERIC
Yeah! That was the last time I saw it.

STEPH
What was the first class you took today?

INT. SOCIOLOGY 101 – THIS MORNING
Boring lecture. Eric is in the back. His legs are propped up on his desk with his cap over his face. He’s snoring up a storm. He sporadically scratches his crotch to the disdain of the GIRL sitting next to him.

ERIC (V.O.)
My socialism class.

STEPH (V.O.)
Sociology.

ERIC (V.O.)
No. I took that last semester.

Steph sighs.

INT. SMITHSONIAN HALL – DAY

STEPH
Wait! Isn’t that the class with The Chad in it?!

ERIC
Who?

STEPH
The Chad. Eric you don’t know The Chad? He’s the biggest guy on campus! Really big. Not the good kind of muscly big. Not that I like muscles on guys that much anyway.

Steph extends her arms to show his size. Eric’s lost.

STEPH (CONT’D)
He definitely stole your hat!

INT. SOCIOLOGY 101 – THIS MORNING
THE CHAD, a behemoth of a man, waddles in behind Eric. He belly-laughs to himself then swipes Eric’s hat off his head.

ERIC (V.O.)
How can you be so sure?

STEPH (V.O.)
He’s a Red Sox fan, Eric! How could you not know that?

The Chad carefully places a Red Sox Hat on Eric’s head.

INT. HALLWAY- AFTERNOON

Eric gasps!

ERIC
A Red Sox fan?! That explains this!

Eric whips out a Red Sox hat out of his backpack.

ERIC (CONT’D)
That son of a gun! I’ll throttle him! I’ll knock his block off!

Eric pops up from the floor with reinvigorated energy with his dukes up.

STEPH
Do you even know where he lives?

Eric deflates like a popped balloon back to floor.

ERIC
It’s over. I’ll never get it back.

STEPH
(rolling her eyes)
He’s a sophomore so he lives in Parker Hall.

Eric springs back up.

ERIC
To Parker Hall!

Eric kicks open a door in front of him and sprints away!

STEPH
(to herself)
Idiot.

INT. OUTSIDE THE CHAD’S ROOM- DAY
A yellow door with a Boston Red Sox 2004 World Champions poster is seen. Below the poster is “THE CHAD’S CHAMBER” written in red marker.

Eric zooms down the hallway past the door. Steph walks down the hall and stops at the Chad’s door.

STEPH
(panting and yelling)
Eric! His room’s down here!

Eric walks back to Steph. He bends over and pants.

ERIC
Hat. I gotta get it back.

STEPH
You got that figured out?

ERIC
Course I do doll.

STEPH
What did I tell about calling me, doll?

ERIC
Sorry.

ERIC (CONT’D)
So here’s the plan. I’ll knock on the door. He’s a Red Sox fan. He’ll attack me out of sheer jealousy since his team sucks complete balls! Worse than the Mets! And they really suck! Then I’ll put the boots to him. He’ll beg for mercy. I’ll kick him while he’s down and get the hat back.

STEPH
Put the boots to him? Have you seen this guy?

ERIC
The bigger they are, the harder I hit.

Eric rolls up his sleeve and flexes his stringy arms.

STEPH
Right. Go stand over there. I’ll get your stupid old hat.

ERIC
Oh. I see where you’re going with this. You’ll lull him into a false sense of security and then I’ll clobber him.

Eric winks at her and then sneaks down the hallway out of sight.

Steph shakes her head and knocks on the door. Tremendous footsteps shake the hall way. The Chad swings his door open. He’s squeezed into a quadruple extra large Red Sox t-shirt. He glowers down at Steph. Inside of his room, in the middle of his desk is ERIC’S HAT.

The Chad’s voice is deep and booming.

THE CHAD
Who dares to touch The Chad’s door?!

STEPH
I do.

THE CHAD
What business do you have with The Chad, woman?

STEPH
Are you like serious with this third person talking?

THE CHAD
The Chad is eternally serious.

STEPH
You took my friend’s hat.

THE CHAD
The Chad have not a clue what speak of woman.

Steph points at the hat. The Chad tilts his massive body slightly to the left to block the sight of it.

THE CHAD (CONT’D)
That is the Chad’s hat.
You expect me to believe you of all people would own a Yankees hat?

THE CHAD
The Chad doesn’t expect you to believe anything. The Chad expects you to get out of the Chad’s face, stop wasting the Chad’s time and skee-daddle!

The Chad slams the door closed.

STEPH
Right. Okay. I’ll leave.

Steph turns and starts to walk away.

THE CHAD (O.S.)
You better!

STEPH
I’ll go home. Fire up my computer, go online. Maybe hop on twitter! So many people on there these days. Maybe I’ll tweet at the Red Sox. They’ll love to know all about how one of their biggest fans is starting a Yankees hat collection.

The Chad’s door bursts open!

THE CHAD
(Panicking)
No! Not Twitter! The Chad will become a laughingstock in front of all the Red Sox Nation! Woman have mercy on The Chad!

The Chad grovels at her feet.

STEPH
Give me the hat.

ERIC (O.S.)
(yelling)
It’s clobbering time!

Eric runs down the hall, right into a FAKE PLANT! He topples it over and falls flat on his face! The Chad and Steph shake their heads.

THE CHAD
Just like a Yankees fan to get riled up over nothing.

The Chad hurls Eric’s hat out of his room.

THE CHAD (CONT’D)
Here! Take it! I don’t want the hat of a team that hasn’t won a championship in years. Haha! Suck it Yankee Doodle!

ERIC
(picking himself off the floor)
Yeah well, at least I can see my own feet.

THE CHAD
(almost crying)
Hey! Shut up!

The Chad scurries away and slams the door shut. Steph holds her nose and picks up Eric’s hat. She hands it to him.

Eric grasps it like it is his first born son. He kisses the hat then smells it. Steph nearly vomits.

ERIC
I missed you.

He places it on his head. The universal order has been restored.

EXT. OUTSIDE PARKER HALL- LATE AFTERNOON

ERIC
Thanks Steph. I don’t know what I would have done without your help.

STEPH
Just promise me, you won’t lose it again.

ERIC
Sure thing doll.

A strong wind whisks the hat right off Eric’s head.

ERIC (CONT’D)
NOOOOO!!!

Eric runs after it. Steph rolls her eyes and heads off in the opposite direction

FADE TO BLACK.

M7MA9A4405

Destiny.

“Circumstances dictate where you start—a single mother raised Kam Chancellor to become the man he is today—but each individual determines his course.

Where I came from, in Compton, kids were brainwashed into thinking that if they weren’t athletes or rappers or drug dealers they were nothing.

My son will understand that he’s in control of his own destiny and that education, work ethic and discipline will guide him to an even better life than I’ve enjoyed. He’ll be the man who makes this world a better place through positive actions and influence.”

– Richard Sherman, February 2nd issue of Sports Illustrated.

nfl_defense_28

Black Enough

“For some reason we are brainwashed to think, if you’re not a thug or an idiot, you’re not black enough. If you go to school, make good grades, speak intelligent, and don’t break the law, you’re not a good black person. It’s a dirty, dark secret in the black community.”

-Charles Barkley

Last week Charles Barkley dropped this little tirade on the black community. He responded to a rumor that supposedly Russell Wilson, quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks, was considered not black enough by his fellow teammates and that had led to a rift between him and his teammates. Though that rumor was later confirmed to be false by Russell Wilson, I believe Charles Barkley is right on the money with his comments. I’ve been through what he’s talking about.

You speak properly. You do your homework. You don’t make any trouble. And then you get slammed with

“You want to be like them!”

“Think you’re better than the rest of us.”

“You’re not black.”

It got to a point where I would shrug my shoulders in response. I didn’t get what these black people wanted from me. What did I need to prove to them to be really black? What was being “black enough”? I just accepted it. Guess I’m not black then. Guess I’m an Oreo whatever that is.

It took me a long time to realize that those black people didn’t own the black identity nor did they have the right to decide who was black and who wasn’t. They didn’t get to tell me what I am. I defined me.

Barkley’s comments reminded me of Rob Parker’s inquisition into RGIII’s blackness from a few years ago.

For those of you who don’t know Rob Parker, he was a sports analyst on ESPN. One day he went after the quarterback on the Washington Redskins, questioning his blackness. You can see his very ignorant comments in the video below.

Is this only a black thing? Do white people deal with other whites saying they aren’t white enough? Or Latinos? Asians?

Who are these blackness investigators? Where do they come from? Who appointed them to check out and measure blackness? Is there a committee I don’t know about that deals with this? Where do they get their criteria for blackness from?

These investigators always seem to go after any black person having success. Like achieving in life is a sign that you’re likely to stop being black. They never evaluate the blackness of criminals and thugs.

I never heard anything like,

“You just got out of jail for the same shit you went in for? I’m not sure you’re really black then.”

or

“You failed class because you skipped? That’s not very black of you.”

A black man who’s a criminal is accepted. He’s fine. The black community accepts you.

A black man with a white fiance busting his ass everyday trying to live his dream? They’re going to start looking into your blackness. You might not be black enough. You might just be an “Uncle Tom” or “Oreo”. Maybe you’ll be deemed an “honorary white”.

Interesting double standard.

Why do some black people need to make another person’s racial integrity their business? It’s not helping anyone. They’re creating a bigger problem. Smart black children could be dissuaded from higher education because of this sentiment. I’ve overheard children teasing one another about doing homework and studying. Is that what we want?

Why is there this belief that if you don’t fit a certain mold, you’re not black? Is it because certain blacks equate success with selling out their race? Do they think that to be black means you have to suffer? You have to be poor? You have to be married to a black woman?

In the video, Rob Parker gives a vague definition of what being black is. Not having a white fiance, not voting Republican, being down with the “cause” and having dreads.

If some black dude wants to vote republican, then he should be able to without being bothered. If some black guy doesn’t want to have dreads, he shouldn’t have to worry about losing black points. If some black woman wants to marry a white man, there should be no problem. The thing that these blackness investigators forget to realize is that the black experience can’t be ripped away from someone.

You can question their racial integrity but you can’t change how that person feels when they’re pulled over by the police. You can’t take away the eyes staring at their every move when they walk into a 7/11 at night. You can’t make them feel any more comfortable when someone says “you’re better than those other blacks”. You can’t kick them out of the race just because they live their life different than yours.

You can’t.

They’ll always be black and you can’t do anything about it.

CM Punk vs. Daniel Bryan at Over the Limit

CM Punk has cooled down a little since last summer when he captured the WWE championship and left the company. He’s still one of the most popular superstars on the roster and regularly gets one of the loudest receptions. He’s been WWE champion for over 170 days. He’s defeated the likes of The Miz, Alberto Del Rio, Dolph Ziggler, and Chris Jericho. His title reign could be better, but nothing is perfect. Now at Over the Limit, CM Punk takes on Daniel Bryan, former World Heavyweight champion and the master of the Yes-lock.

As a big fan of both men, I was ecstatic when Daniel Bryan won the Beat the Clock challenge and earned the right to face CM Punk. They’ve had matches in Ring of Honor and Full Impact Pro Wrestling that were both great. Those matches are worth tracking down and watching if you can.

Ring of Honor was nice enough to upload CM Punk and Danielson’s first meeting in ROH on to Youtube.

I do have some gripes with this feud. CM Punk has only main evented one PPV since becoming the WWE champion. That was TLC 2011, the only PPV that John Cena missed that year. Since then, John Cena has main evented over Punk even in his own hometown. I would love for the show to build up to this WWE title match, but I’m really afraid the WWE will have Johnny Ace vs. John Cena go on last. I know that Cena is the main draw but he’s not the WWE champion. Unless his match is particularly important, he shouldn’t be going on last.

My only other gripe is that they haven’t built it up much. Punk came out on RAW and bad mouthed Johnny Ace for his attacks on John Cena. He mentioned Bryan for one second before continuing to launch a tirade on Johnny Ace. Bryan wasn’t mentioned on the show until hastily being shoved into a handicap tag match where Lord Tensai pinned Punk. Many segments went into building up Cena vs. Ace, but only the end of the show went to Punk vs. Bryan. It was good for what it was, but I would have liked to see a promo between them. On Smackdown Bryan mentioned that he would beat Punk, but again it wasn’t a big focus.

This is a WWE title match. I know the PPV is Over the Limit and it’s usually one of the less important PPVs but the build could be a bit stronger. I know the match is going to kick ass, but they need to convince other members of the audience that there’s a reason to pay attention to this match.

WWE posted a great article on their website building up the match. There’s no reason that they can’t bring this onto the actual show. http://www.wwe.com/shows/raw/2012-05-07/cm-punk-daniel-bryan-history/page-1

I’m looking forward to what should be a great match even if the WWE puts it on the backburner during the show and has Cena vs. Johnny Ace main event. Who knows? Maybe CM Punk vs. Daniel Bryan could one day headline Wrestlemania. That’d be worth the price of admission.