I'll Get the Car (Marriage, Based on a True Story).
NOTE TO READERS: I wrote this when we used to be able to go on vacations. But I think it holds up.
Opening scene: Brooklyn Apartment, Interior. Lunchtime. Andrea/Mom is cooking lunch in the kitchen. Kids (Emily & Sam) are watching TV in their pajamas. Dad (Craig) standing around, on phone, looking at scores.
Andrea: Kids, lunch is almost ready, let’s come set the table. (She looks at kids and sees they are on couch watching TV, in the zone, ignoring her).
Craig: looking at phone, not looking up: Yeah kids let’s get ready for lunch.
Andrea, whisking eggs: Emily & Sam, when that show is over, you’ve got to get dressed, I asked you to do that about half an hour ago. We’re leaving for Poconos after lunch, let’s get dressed. And then lunch will be ready and you can help set the table.
Craig; still looking at his phone, not at kids: Yeah, let’s turn off the TV when this is over.
Andrea slices vegetables for salad, begins cooking eggs, takes butter and dressing out of fridge. Slices bread etc.
Kids, ignore parents completely, begin to fight over remote control after TV show is over.
Emily: Sam you had a show this time it’s my turn.
Craig on phone ignores kids fighting.
Andrea, making scrambled eggs, turns to kids and says: Kids we agreed this was last show, turn it off and get dressed.
Kids continue fighting, Craig still on phone, but he looks up as screams get louder between kids who are fighting over which show to watch next and mom who says turn it off while finishing the lunch.
Craig: Kids listen to your mother! Turn off the TV and get dressed. Looks back at phone.
Andrea turns off eggs, walks over to living room and turns off TV. Kids start to scream at each other and her. She sits down with them and says: Listen, we are going on vacation. We’re done with TV. I asked you guys to turn it off a while ago and you kept it on and now no one is ready to leave and lunch is on the table. I want to see better listening or we are not going to be able to have TV anymore.
Emily: Fine mom but it wasn't me, Sam wouldn’t let me have my show and now it's not fair that I didn't have a show. Sam always gets what he wants and I get nothing!
Sam: No, I let her have one show and well, she likes my shows and she never said anything!
Andrea: I’m not listening to this fighting anymore. Let’s have lunch now. You’ll get dressed afterwards, the food is getting cold.
Craig has set table and is now sitting at table reading phone.
Andrea: Thanks for setting the table honey. Kids, you guys are cleaning it up.
Next Scene: Dining Table everyone eating lunch and improv chatting about how much they are looking forward to going to Great Wolf Lodge slides etc. Hot springs, all the stuff they like to do there. Craig reminds Emily to use napkins about ten times and she just uses her pajamas.
When lunch is finished, Craig starts to get up and says: Okay, I’ll get the car. Pushes back chair from table and begins to put on jacket and boots to get ready to get the car.
Andrea: Oh, wait, you’re getting the car now? We are not even close to ready to go. Maybe you don't want to go yet, you can help clean up and pack and get kids ready?
Craig: Nah, it’s a few blocks away, I’ll go get the car. I left my stuff on the bed for you to pack up though! See you soon.
Craig leaves apartment.
Andrea calls after him: Well don’t rush because it will take a while to do all of this by myself!!!
Andrea turns to children: Kids help me clean the table.
Emily & Sam help clean the table.
Andrea: Ok, go get ready, and I’ll finish in the cleaning the kitchen and start packing.
The kids go to their rooms where they start to play and do not get ready.
While Andrea is cleaning up the kitchen she runs through list of things she has to remember to pack:
Clothes for kids
Hair brush and detangler spray for Emily
Snacks for car
Water for car
Dramamine in case emily gets car sick
Puke bags in case emily gets car sick
Books to read kids
Toiletries for kids
Toiletries for me
Clothes for me
Snow pants for all
Boots for all
Sleeping bag for kids cause the room only has one bed
Charger for Kindles
Switch to Craig strolling along sunny day in Brooklyn, to a coffee shop and gets a nice coffee, scrolls through what’s on his mind:
Red Sox trades
Thoughts about Next meal
Lunch: Maybe we can stop for lunch at a Perkins 'cause I love their biscuits and pie?
That would be great!
Andrea hasn’t made those meatballs I like in a long time, will remind her to make them after complimenting her on cooking
Would be nice if we could have sex on this vacation maybe the kids can get a separate room? Sam is five, so that’s fine.
Breakfast buffet at great wolf lodge is sooo good, can’t wait
Switch to scene in apartment: Andrea finishes cleaning kitchen and goes looking for kids and finds kids playing with their toys in their rooms still in pajamas. They are not getting ready. She reminds them again.
Andrea: Emily & Sam, you have to get dressed. If you aren’t dressed we can’t go to Great Wolf Lodge. I’m not happy with the kind of listening happening today. Mommy’s trying to get everything together for our trip, please get yourselves ready. Thank you!
While speaking, she grabs two cases and starts to pack and go through her mental list of things to remember.
Sam: Mom, I have to poop!
Andrea: Ok, let me know when you’re done and I can check your butt!
Sam: But I’m afraid, come with me to the potty.
Mom: Okay, coming. (Leaves cases in room).
Emily, interrupting: Mom where are my sunglasses and that unicorn bathing suit? Where are ladybug and cat noir?
Andrea, while attending to sam’s butt: Sunglasses are in the summer bin, ladybug girl and cat noir are on your desk, bathing suit is in the top drawer.
Sam, crying: Mom, my poop is stuck!
Andrea, calmly: Sam, just relax and it will come out. I’ll be right back.
Andrea continues packing, walking from room to room to get everything.
Emily: Mom how long is the ride?
Andrea: About two hours (packing toiletries and books)
Emily: UGH I hate long drives.
Andrea: I know sweetie, but you’ll be fine. You don’t get car sick in Grandma’s car (continues packing kids stuff).
Sam, from bathroom: I want to play on my kindle in the car!!!
Andrea: Sure (zipping cases)
Sam: I’m done but the poop is all over the seat now, sorry mommy!
Andrea, ok coming to clean it up (rolls cases into living room, returns to bathroom).
Andrea; wipes sam’s butt, cleans toilet, washes hands and tells him to get ready.
Sam crying: My butt itches!!! I need cream!
Andrea puts cream on the butt. Washes hands again.
While she is doing that she gets a text from Craig: It’s so cold out here, so glad I went for the car, not you! Getting coffee. Want one?
Andrea texts back: First writes, FUCK YOU FOR LEAVING ME TO DO ALL THIS BY MYSELF WHILE YOU GET COFFEE! Erases it. Writes: Sure coffee good. Thanks!
Sam washes his hands and goes into his room presumably to get dressed.
Andrea grabs kindles and a tote bag to start filling with snacks.
Andrea yells to kids who are still in their rooms: Are you ready yet?
Andrea walks back to their room. She finds Sam is now naked and playing beyblades emily is still in pajamas and playing with her dolls. Sam’s beyblade twirls into her foot and she screams.
Emily: God Sam! Watch out where you spin those! They hurt!
Emily throws a doll at his head and it hits him in the eye and he starts crying and hits her and then full blown out war.
Andrea stops the fighting.
Andrea: Kids, please let’s get dressed now. We have to go!
Andrea now goes back into other room and gets sleeping bags down and all the stuff for skiing while kids lay on floor moaning about why they have no free time and why do they have to get dressed since they are just going into the car.
Switch to scene of Craig strolling with coffee in the sunshine. Craig runs into a friend with his coffee and has a nice chat, laughing and relaxed.
Switch back to apartment: Kids have gotten dressed but gone to living room and turned on TV again, there is yet another fight to turn it off.
Andrea: Kids put on your socks and shoes, we can’t leave without them on your feet.
Emily & Sam completely ignore request to put on socks and shoes. They do not even look at their shoes. Instead, Sam starts playing with soccer ball, Emily is singing and dancing and then walks over to start playing the piano.
Meanwhile, Andrea is struggling to get all bags cases tote bags of snacks, sleeping bags and snow gear onto luggage cart.
Looks back and kids still lollygagging.
Andrea, starting to lose her mind: KIDS! Put on your socks and shoes now please!
Emily & Sam: GOD mom you don’t have to yell! You really have to work on your patience mom!
Kids slowly walk toward sock and shoe area but put on socks and shoes as slowly as humanly possible.
Andrea: Great! Now put on your jackets and hats and let’s go!
Sam: I don’t want to wear a jacket I’m too hot. That hat is itchy.
Emily: Me too! We’re just going into the car.
Andrea rolls eyes and takes deep breath to she does not murder her own children. PICK YOUR BATTLES PICK YOUR BATTLES goes through her mind: Ok, well, pile them onto the luggage cart then.
Both kids shoot up and scream: GIVE US A RIDE ON THE LUGGAGE CART.
Both start yelling over who got a ride last time.
Switch to Craig sitting in car outside apartment with coffee reading sports news on phone relaxing. Peaceful and serene.
Andrea struggles to fit screaming kids onto the luggage cart with all luggage and maneuvers luggage cart into small elevator with both kids on it. Kids laughing and screaming in elevator ride down. They get out and run through lobby to car. Andrea struggles with overflowing cart through lobby doors to the car.
Craig on phone in driver’s seat not looking up.
Kids are running around outside and all bags have tumbles off of the luggage cart. Andrea struggles to get them all back on the luggage cart. Craig looking at phone and does not see her or help. Once luggage back on cart, Andrea rolls it over to car and knocks on the glass of the passenger side window to get Craig's attention so he can help.
Craig looks up from the phone and rolls down the window and takes a sip of his coffee, smiles the relaxed smile of someone who has just gotten the car, and says,
Craig: Did you remember my phone charger?
Written By Andrea Strong
Scene: Ext. Hotel, night.
Craig pulls up in the car, drops off kids, Andrea, and all the bags and says: I’ll go park the car.
Gets into car and drives away.