Friday, 30 May 2008

Life Before Mobile Phones

You know, I've recently wondered how we managed before mobile phones. I imagine things were very different. And here I am, imagining it . . .

1. INT. A BUSY BUS.

A WHITE TEENAGE BOY GETS ON. HE'S CARRYING A LUDICROUSLY MASSIVE PILE OF EQUIPMENT. HE STRUGGLES DOWN BUS AND SITS ON BACK SEAT.

CAP: 1982

HE PICKS UP A MEGAPHONE AND SHOUTS ACROSS OTHER PASSENGERS TOWARDS THE WINDOW.

TEENAGE BOY:
It's me. I's on me way now, innit.

PASSENGERS TUT, SHUFFLE.

OUT OF THE WINDOW WE SEE A SECOND TEENAGE BOY WITH MEGAPHONE.

CUT TO:

2. EXT. A STREET CORNER.

THE SECOND TEENAGE BOY IS SHOUTING THROUGH HIS MEGAPHONE

SECOND TEENAGE BOY:
It's Lee. He's on his way now, innit.

WE PULL BACK TO SEE IN THE DISTANCE A THIRD TEENAGE BOY, ALSO SHOUTING THROUGH A MEGAPHONE.

THIRD TEENAGE BOY:
It's Lee. He's on . . .

CUT TO:

3. INT. BUS.

TEENAGE BOY:
(STILL SHOUTING) Yeah. Laters.

HE PUTS DOWN MEGAPHONE. PASSENGERS RELAX. THE BUS STOPS. A SWEATING, OUT-OF BREATH, MIDDLE-AGED MESSENGER JUMPS ONTO BUS. HE RUSHES UP TO TEENAGE BOY WITH A PIECE OF A4 PAPER.

PASSENGERS TUT AGAIN. TEENAGE BOY READS PAPER QUICKLY.

TEENAGE BOY:
Gaylord. (PICKS UP OLD-FASHIONED HEAVY MANUAL TYPEWRITER AND TALKS AS HE'S TYPING) M8 r u having a laff. LOL. i said 2nite "colon P".

HE RIPS THE SHEET FROM THE TYPEWRITER AND HANDS IT TO THE MESSENGER. MESSENGER LEAPS OUT OF EMERGENCY EXIT DOOR.

SFX. SCREAMS AND SCREECHING BRAKES.

TEENAGE BOY PUTS DOWN TYPEWRITER. ALL IS CALM. CAMERA FOCUSES ON ONE PASSENGER RELAXING AGAIN.

LOUD CRACKLY SOUND OF COLE PORTER'S CHEEK TO CHEEK STARTS. PASSENGER ANGRILY TURNS ROUND.

TEENAGE BOY HAS AN OLD WIND-UP GRAMOPHONE. ITS TRUMPET IS PUSHING THE HEAD OF A SECOND PASSENGER AGAINST WINDOW.

TEENAGE BOY:
(TO PASSENGER) What?


I bet that's exactly how it was.

3 comments:

stormywhether said...

My grandma: "If you haven't got anything worth saying, don't say it."

My grandma's dead now.

Did kids used to travel on buses with typewriters? Inevitably this would, on occasion, occur, but why would they use txtspk before it was invented?

Maybe it's time for the pub, Bandage. Maybe you're already there!

Captain Mac said...

I think you need to stop imagining things, before you go mad.

Michael Palin said...

I think stormywether - who I assume, from his screen-name, is an angry castrato - has missed the point slightly.

As any member of the Monty Python team will tell you, juxtaposition of disparate elements is funny!

This is comedy genius - get it sold to some BBC3 sketch show immediately!

It would also work well in an earlier setting - 1920s or 30s perhaps. But I'd still keep the 'txtspk' - because juxtaposition is arsing well funny. Toaster. Tie Rack. Barbecue.