An agreement on principle

{Scene opens on a lone unoccupied upscale podium in a single spotlight. Background noise is of subdued conversation and the clink of silverware and glasses, suggesting a formal dinner. The podium remains empty for a few long beats before a bleary-eyed man in disheveled formal attire enters the spotlight, back to camera. He turns around slowly, squints at the spotlight’s glare, shields his eyes with his arm for a moment, then takes a rather rumpled sheaf of paper out of a pocket in his jacket, and with the towering and elaborate dignity of the truly drunk, makes a show of putting the paper down on the podium, smoothing it out carefully, taking out his glasses and putting them on, and hrumphing and aheming until the noise dies down. He is inexpertly shaven, poorly combed, and a little unsteady. }

Speaker : Ahem. It is both my duty and my pleasure as the duly chosen spokesperson of this august assemblage to announce that, after a long and trying night of intense negot… nego…. talks, involving many important concessions made on both sides and deep sharing of mutual respect, as well as pitchers of beer, cocktails, and…. that red stuff Rabul was passing around later on…

Rabul : (off camera, shouted) It’s call (incomprehensible, vaguely Arabic sounding)

Speaker : Clicks and pops, Rabul. Whistles and beeps. (seems to forget his place for a moment) Anyhow….. ahem. Right. It is both my duty and my pleasure as the duly…. etcetera of this…. group, to announce that after… all of that other stuff…. we have arrived at a list of agreements in principle that I think you will all agree herald a new era of understanding between all men on the things which truly unite us. I will not read the entire list, as my time before you is limited and the list is quite…. uh, extensive. But I will share a sampling of items from said list and I think that will be sufficient for you to get the uh…. gist.

{Speaker shuffles papers for a few moments, as though looking for the right page, then ahs, clears his throat again, and begins. }

1. We are all in clear agreement that conflict and strife have taken far too heavy a toll on all sides, and that everyone involved is committed to ending the conflict so that we can all rebuild our lives and go back to how things were before this ugly conflict ever began.
2. Chocolate is frigging awesome. Seriously. Chocolate is like, the best tasting thing ever. Think about it. Every single person in the world likes chocolate. Name one another food like that, just one. You can’t. There isn’t one. That’s like… amazing. Chocolate. Amazing.
3. Tits can be too big. There’s such a thing as too much of a good thing. There was some debate on this point, but consensus was, in the eleventh hour, that tits can be too big if, um…. (squints at page, scanning it) “if they’re so big the chick can’t even, like, walk, or whatever. ”
4. Some guys…. some guys…. you know, some guys, just…. fuck’m. You know what I mean? Fuck’m. That’s all you can just. Just…. fuck those guys. Fuck’m. Right? Right.
5. Empire, also know as Episode V, is, objectively and scientifically speaking, the best of all the Star Wars movies. New Hope is great too, don’t get us wrong, and Jedi had some awesome parts despite all the fucking teddy bears, but still. Empire. Number one. Yoda, Lando, Luke losing his hand, Han being frozen at the end… come on. No comparison. (pause, then quickly and offhandedly) Oh, and of course, it goes without saying that the prequels all blow goat balls and Lucas should die of shame.
6. If you are out with your friends, and some douchebag is being a total asshole to some waitress for like no reason at all, and none of you do anything to stop him, then you are all equally to blame. None of this “Well you should have said something” bullshit. Everybody is to blame, and you all should kick in something extra in her tip, or you are just as bad as a douchebag himself.
7. Wax lips are gross and wrong on every possible level. Ditto candy corn.
8. Some guys, just….. (faint voice from the audience is briefly heard, incomprehensible)Oh, I did that one already? Shit. Still…. some guys, just…. fuck’m.
9. Nobody can actually prove that Marilyn Manson and Paulie Shore are two entirely different and separate human beings, and this fact should bring fear to the hearts of all right thinking people on the planet Earth.
10. Uh…. this one is a little hard to read, looks like someone added it in what appears to be pencil crayon later on… uh…. I think it says…. “brownies forever”? Uh, OK… (voices off) What? What does it say? What the hell is a “bronie”? Whatever.

I think you will all agree that this document is but the beginning of an historic process of building a foundation for a new era in which all men can live together in peace, harmony, and understanding, and it would be foolish to stop such a clearly epoch-making process before it can complete its historic work of….. history. Accordingly, I will now adjourn this meeting so that my colleagues and I can return to finding even greater accord, and respect, and cocktail recipes, until our job is truly complete, or at least until enough of us can remember where we parked to get the hell out of here. Meeting adjourned!”

{Speaker fishes through the papers on the podium for a gavel, finds none, shrugs and bangs on the side of the podium with his cellphone twice, then looks around as though looking for the way out of the spotlight, once more shading his eyes with his arm, then stumbles out of view. Belatedly, there is a smattering of applause from the audience. A few more seconds of ambient noise, along with a few coughs. )


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