Toxic Custard Workshop Files The Adventures of Ron and Jeff

6: Red Tape, Charity, More Telly

(Ron is on the couch. Jeff is on the phone)

JEFF: Yes, yes, I'll hold.

(Jeff waits)

JEFF: Hello? Yes, I'm told I need to get a form 14 F. What? Yes, I'll hold.

RON: Government departments...

JEFF: Hello? Yes, I'm trying to get a form 14 F. What? But I just spoke to them, they transferred me to you.

(Jeff hangs up in disgust.)

RON: Huh... bloody government department bureaucracy.

JEFF: Who said anything about government, I was just trying to order a pizza. I knew it was a mistake to phone this one. (He holds up a leaflet.) Huh. Red Tape Pizza.

(Someone knocks on the door. Jeff goes to look out the window and see who it is.)

JEFF: Oh Shit, it's the Salvos!

RON: But we're not homeless. We live in what could loosely be described as a home. Ergo elk, we're not homeless.

JEFF: I think you'll find they're not after us to give us tea and save our souls, more like scum some money off us.

RON: Oh, now that's a different matter.

(Another knock on the door)

JEFF: Quick Ron, get rid of them.

(Ron opens the door)

RON: Yeah?

SALVO 1: Hello, we're collecting for the Red Shield Appeal.

RON: Sorry, we don't have any spare red shields.

SALVO 2: No no, a donation. Money.

RON: Money? Dollars? Cash?

SALVO 1: Yes.

JEFF: Tell her there's none in the house.

RON: There's none in the house. It's all hidden in a small metal box buried in the park, due east from here, landlubber.

SALVO 1: (backing away) Yes well, fine, sorry to trouble you.

RON: Take thirty steps north from the roundabout, arr, and there ye be.

(Jeff comes to the door and pushes Ron away.)

JEFF: Please, don't worry about Ron. Ron, go sit down. Hello, Red Shield Appeal, is it? Collecting for the homeless?

SALVO 2: Yes.

JEFF: Right, well, I don't know if you realised this, but we don't actually live here. We're wossname.. squatting. We're actually homeless. So... ummm.. could you give us some money?

SALVO 1: What?

JEFF: Go on, just a few bucks for a pizza. Oh, and a bottle of Coke. It'd save our lives.

SALVO 1: It doesn't actually work like that. Besides, this doesn't look like a squat.

JEFF: Doesn't it? Oh well, no, that's because we've taken very good care of it. We're squatters, but we're proud. And because other organisations have donated... the sofa, and the TV...

SALVO 2: And the drinks cabinet?

JEFF: Erm... yeah, look... heh heh...

(Jeff shuts the door in their faces and goes back to the sofa.)

RON: So can we claim a tax deduction?

JEFF: What, just because they came to the door? No, I think you'll find in the small print in the Tax Pack that it says you actually have to give them some money before it's deductible.

RON: I don't know why they bother collecting for the homeless. How would they find them?

JEFF: Give me strength, Lord.

RON: Oh sorry, I didn't realise you were a Christian.

(Ron goes back to watching the telly.)

JEFF: I'm not a Christian, I was just requesting that a deity, any deity, enhance my powers of patience in order to aid my dealings with your STUPID MIND! ALL YOU EVER DO IS SIT THERE PICKING YOUR NOSE AND MAKING THE MOST STUPID OBSERVATIONS!

RON: Haha ha! Those Biker Mice From Mars are great. Sorry, what did you say?

JEFF: Don't worry about it. Just sit there. Go on! Sit there! Just sit there watching cartoons. Don't try and indulge in any type of intelligent conversation. Just sit there with the brain on neutral and take in the telly.

RON: Okay. Oh, commercial break. Hey, have you seen my Berholt Brecht anywhere?

(Ron goes off to find his book)

JEFF: And while you're at it Lord, please strike Ron down. Just a little bit? Please? Just a small lightning bolt? A small, localised, swarm of locusts? Bees? Some kind of killer mind eating disease?

(Ron comes back. The television starts to go fuzzy)

RON: Hey, what's wrong with this telly?

JEFF: Wrong? Nothing? Nothing should be wrong. It's brand new, we only bought it last week. Should be nothing wrong. Wrong? What do you mean wrong? What have you done to it? What buttons have you pressed? What foul deeds have you performed on its fine tuning? What desecration has been done to its antenna?! What sacrilege is this?!!?

RON: Keep your toupee on, I'm sure it's nothing serious.

(Jeff tries switching channels.)

JEFF: Nothing serious?! That was my fucking five hundred dollars! Look, none of the channels work!

RON: Yeah yeah yeah. Hold on, I'll try a kick.

(Ron gives the TV a kick on the left hand side, and is about to try another on the right when Jeff grabs his leg, pulls Ron's shoe off, throws it out the window, and starts hitting Ron's foot with a mallet.)

JEFF: Don't kick my telly! Don't kick my telly!

RON: All right, all right! Ow! All right, it's under warranty, we'll call a TV repairman.

JEFF: Correction: YOU will call a repairman. I'll get back to reading the new phone book. Now, where were we? Ah yes, Government Services fast index...

(Later. Jeff is still reading the phone book. Ron is asleep on the couch, probably dreaming about naked people, with a big grin on his face. There is a knock at the door. Ron wakes up with a start, and goes to open it.)

RON: Yeah?

TV MAN: TV Repair.

RON: Oh yeah, come on in.

JEFF: Just a minute. Photo identification, please.

TV MAN: What?

JEFF: Identification. We can't let just anyone in here, you know. Security. For all we know, you could be a lunatic psychopathic who'll plant a bomb in our telly which kills us all when we tune into A Current Affair.

TV MAN: So the fact that I said "TV Repair", when your mate here answered the door, and I could have only known that you wanted a TV repaired if you had rung me, is of no import?

JEFF: Ah well, yes. That death-defying logic will do. Come in.

TV MAN: So, this is the telly, is it? Tsssstt.. I dunno. The ol' Mitsanyasonic '94, is it? Tricky to get the parts for this one...

JEFF: May I remind you that this is under warranty, so you don't need to inflate the price or repair time by saying Tssst a lot and muttering about cowboy manufacturers?

TV MAN: Oh. Okay. Well, let's try...

(He kicks the TV on the right hand side. The picture comes back instantly.)

TV MAN: All right? Sign here please.

(Jeff signs the clipboard, and the TV man leaves. Ron changes the TV back to the cartoons, and Jeff sighs.)

JEFF: Those cartoons challenging your mind, then?

RON: Yeah thanks, great.

JEFF: You know, if someone had asked me ten years ago, where I would be... do you know what I'd have said?

RON: But I did ask you that ten years ago.

JEFF: Yeah. And do you know what I said?

RON: You said "Christ knows."

JEFF: No, actually I said...

RON: You said "what a fucking stupid question."

(Jeff is silent for a few seconds.)

JEFF: What I would have said if I'd taken the time and trouble to formulate an intelligent answer... is that I hoped that I would be studying the finer art of the great European capitals... taking in the culture of the world... breathing in the air of the Swiss alps... walking down the streets of Venice...

RON: Doesn't sound all that great to me.

(Jeff looks around at the filthy flat. Ron lies stomach first on the floor, munching biscuits and watching cartoons. Jeff looks out of the window.)

JEFF: What's that?

RON: What?

JEFF: Out there. Looks like some kind of time gate.

RON: What?

JEFF: Yeah, a kind of shimmering blue light...

RON: You're kidding...

JEFF: It's about ten foot square, a big wobbling light blue light... and inside the light I can just make out... it looks like sand dunes... but it's very murky... The light is getting brighter... It's moving... It's coming towards us... it's coming towards the house.... arrgrghhh!!!

RON: Shit!

(Ron leaps behind the couch and hides. Jeff goes to the TV and changes the channel, then sits back down on the couch.)

JEFF: Sucked in.

5: Taxi 7: Job Interview

TCWF - Ron & Jeff