I try to mix things up on holidays and do things that are surprising, but sometimes it’s hard not to fall into a rut. Here’s a sketch that illustrates what might happen if you allow yourself to become boring…
EXT. FRONT DOOR – MORNING
ROGER, mid thirties, tall and thin, nervous knocks on the door. He has a bouquet of flowers and a box of candy under his arm. He waits, and then knocks again. When no one answers, he leans down, lifts a stone from the garden, picks up a key and lets himself in.
INT. HALLWAY – CONTINUOUS
ROGER enters and turns on the lights. The floor is littered with rose petals. He follows them down the hall and into the kitchen. They circle the table. On the table is a card, leaning against a bottle of wine. There are two empty glasses and a corkscrew as well. As he enters the room, he notices a red light playing across his chest. When he breaks the beam, music starts to play, slow sultry music.
There is no answer. He crosses to the table and leans down to read the card.
I’m in the bedroom. Come on in, I’ve been waiting for you.
ROGER hesitates. He glances back at the hallway leading to the front door. Then he turns and follows the still proceeding trail of rose petals out of the kitchen.
INT. BEDROOM – CoNTINUOUS
The room is lit with candles. Incense is burning on the dresser. The music he tripped by passing through the light sensor in the kitchen emanates from a stereo in the corner. On the HDTV, the image of a crackling fire is playing. On the bed a figure is apparently asleep beneath a red satin sheet.
There is still no answer. ROGER hurries across the room and reaches down to shake the arm of the figure in the bed. His ankle trips a string. The sheet begins shooting around, air hissing, as the blow-up doll beneath shoots out and sputters around the room. The music stops and is replaced by laughter. (O.S.) We hear the outer door open, and ROGER spins toward the bedroom door. He quickly hides in the closet. A moment later EARL, late sixties, balding, carrying a box of chocolates identical to what ROGER has, and some flowers, enters the room. He looks confused. He sees the now flat blow-up doll on the floor, bends, and picks it up. ROGER steps from the closet.
Son? Where’s your mother?
I was going to ask you that.
An alarm bell starts ringing, and both men turn toward the sound. A camera flash goes off in their faces. The laughter gives way to a woman’s voice, speaking calmly.
That’s Mom’s voice.
The two listen.
Earl, this is one time I don’t have to say ‘I wish I could see the look on his face’ because I have it on film. Since I’m sure you are standing there with the same old box of chocolates and some flowers, listen up. I have had it. Every year, it’s the same. Every year you come in, you give me flowers, you give me candy, you take me to dinner, and put a check mark next to Mother’s Day on your list. Jesus, you even have your son trained to do the same. God help our future daughter-in-law. This time, I wanted something more. I’ve gone to Hawaii. I’ll be back in a week. There is no food in the refrigerator, the bills are in the hall by the door where you usually leave them until I get tired of seeing them and take care of it. The trash is not out, the house is not clean. Maybe if you blow that thing in your hands back up, you won’t be lonely until I get back...
And Earl? Happy Mother’s Day.
EARL turns to ROGER – a stricken expression on his face. ROGER starts to laugh. He holds out the box in his hand.
The recording returns to laughter.
Tags: mother's day