6, Issue 1
By George Francis Blankenhorn
INT. SMALL APARTMENT - MORNING
A young man in his early twenties rummages through his room, half organizing
and half destroying. As he rummages through a pile of clothes he starts
to mutter to himself until his voice peaks into an angry sentence speaking
It’s just a fucking mess I don’t even know where to start
every time I do one thing something else needs done it’s a vicious
cycle. Jesus, Francis, when are you going to get your shit together?
Francis then plops onto the floor as if giving up on everything. As Francis
sits on the floor he looks out the window and into the small grassy area
in front of his apartment. His eyes focus with the intensity of an epiphany,
and aloud to himself Francis begins to speak again.
Why is it that plants and flowers have no organizational problems? I mean
the DNA in a tree isn’t that far off from the DNA of humans.
Keeping his eyes fixed on the plants outside, Francis rises
to his feet and begins to head towards the door.
EXT. CITY PARK - MID MORNING
Behind the rustle of a tree’s leaves we can see the silhouette of
Francis as he moves slowly with his eyes fixated on the ground. In the
left hand of Francis is a collection of different plants and flowers obviously
from different places because some of the flowers are wild and some from
gardens. As Francis searches the park for more plants he walks past two
couples having a picnic. As he walks past he made eye contact with one
of the girls and the two young men with the girls are not very pleased.
After having his life threatened Francis decides to leave.
EXT. CITY PARK EDGE - MID MORNING
As Francis comes up to a road while leaving the park the intersection
crosswalk signal turns from a green man walking to a red hand.
Stopped at the crossing signal a young man in a blue pinstripe business
suit approaches Francis. The young man stops, standing shoulder to shoulder
with Francis looking not only at the crossing light but also around as
if waiting for the appropriate moment to start a conversation.
BLUE SUIT MAN
Hey, nice plants you got there buddy you a plant salesman?
No. Shaking his head but never taking his eyes off the ground.
BLUE SUIT MAN
I’m Cam. So what do you sell? Bibles? Cars? Vacuums?
I don’t sell anything.
What do mean man that’s the spirit of America, the Native Americans
sell gambling and who would know better than that of the noble savages?
You tell me!
Cam stops for a moment and shifts himself to make it easier to look at
OK listen, what’s your name?
Well that’s not going to work but we will deal with that later,
but you should consider Frank. Let me tell you why you should be in sales
like me. Cam looks at the ground and bites his nail, obviously trying
to think of an example of sales as Francis looks at the still red crosswalk
signal with hopes of it magically changing.
So take those flowers you got there how much did you pay for those?
Nothing I found them growing.
Well that isn’t going to work you see we need a license to sell
these plants and you sure can’t go around stealing them from other
I didn’t steal them I found them.
On their property slick, it’s theft what you need to do is find
a nice country where they grow plants for cheap and import them into Mexican
maquilladoras and have them put into bouquets for next to nothing then
sell them in front of strip clubs, do you get it now?
Why would I sell flowers to people in front of strip clubs?
Because the men at strip clubs are either in need of flowers for their
wife at home whom they feel guilty about or they need flowers for some
dancer who is so out of their league they can’t even begin to manage,
I mean I can manage the clubs but I could sell a nun a box of condoms.
Listen I have a business proposal what you do is you give me a hundred
dollars right now and I set you up with an information booklet then to
make your money back you sell two booklets for a hundred a piece and keep
75 from each and give me the extra 25 from each it’s a win win situation!
But who pays in the end?
You see you’re thinking about how it used to be here.
Cam holds his right hand out as if giving a high five.
But after September 11th it’s all about here.
Putting his hand on his heart
Here and here, do you understand? Here and here.
As Cam continues his Nazi like motion the crosswalk light turns green
and Francis very quickly walks across the street. Trapped in the importance
of his motion, Cam doesn’t realize Francis is gone until he is too
EXT. DOWNTOWN - MIDDAY
In the business district of downtown, Francis is still looking for plants
but now they are in large pots on the sidewalk but none of them seem to
catch the eye of Francis. As Francis is leaving the downtown region a
funeral procession blocks his path and a dirty looking guy stumbles towards
him. With no escape, Francis realizes what’s coming.
Hey buddy, let me tell you something. You get these people who tell you
what to think and what to do and you do it for some measly change so what
if I’m gonna get bombed off this wine it don’t affect you,
I can piss myself on the corner and it don’t hurt nobody.
It certainly does not.
No! You’re not listening. When I’m talking you gotta listen
or you’re gonna miss the point, the thing is I figured it out.
Really? And what is it that you figured out?
I said listen, are you fucking retarded?
Grabbing at Francis and shaking him violently
Jesus shit Christ I’m talking to a fucking asshole retard, now listen
I’m gonna teach you some truth that you need to know in this world.
Number one- don’t let women get to you. I loved some girl for eight
months and all I got was heartache. Women will suck your soul out of your
body and eat it, that’s where they get their menstruation blood
from, it’s from the souls of men they have convinced they love then
they sleep with your friend Curt and don’t return your calls even
though you bought them tickets to the national tractor pull and you paid
for dinner every time you went to Shoney’s. Back to the point number
three booze is there for you, people think it’s bad because it ruins
your life. It didn’t ruin mine look at me I’ve got money and
a job and even though I’m not allowed to see my kids they know I
love them when I send their mommy that monthly check. Because that is
what new love is all about.
Yeah you know new love, the kind that’s new to the people, traditional
love is made up of promises and other devout actions but new love is much
simpler. New love is the concept of love through distanced actions like
buying Christmas presents. People who love you buy you presents don’t
Yeah but they don’t have to if they love you.
Wrong, asshole. If someone says they love you they buy you presents and
it is just that simple. I prove myself through alcohol if I didn’t
miss my family I wouldn’t drink so in essence I drink for them-
new love. But speaking of love I was wondering if you would be interested
in a business proposal you see I got these booklets. As these last words
come out the drunk falls face first into a ditch and starts snoring.
EXT. RAILROAD TRACKS-AFTERNOON
Standing in front of the tracks the railroad warning lights go on and
Francis is stuck again. Francis looks at the flowers in his hand as if
trying to grasp their power but nothing changes. Francis suddenly becomes
aware that he is not alone standing at the train. An odd, glassy-eyed
man is standing next to him smiling wildly with a WWJD t-shirt on.
Hello, brother. What a wonderful day the Lord has given us, don’t
Yeah, well there is a continental tropic air mass moving in so we get
warm air and no rain.
Well they can tell you what is happening but they can’t tell you
why, no man can tell you why. Hi, I’m Noah from the First Jesus
Lovers of North America Midwest branch.
Uh, hi there; actually they understand why it happens. If you are questioning
the actual beginning of things no one could possibly know because there
would be too much information for one mind.
That’s not true, God knows all and you can meet him.
I’m not too big on the religion thing. I mean sure there might be
a higher force but who is to say it is “God”?
(Muttered and hardly audible)
When the fires of hell scorch your tortured soul you’ll know.
Nothing. Well if you’re so certain about your beliefs then why not
let me just tell you about god, I’m not trying to push my lord on
you but let me tell you about him. He saved me. I was down and out and
he saved me. I was addicted to huffing paint and one day when I was huffing
the way Satan wanted me to I fell over and hit my head. Before I woke
up in the pool of blood a voice came to me and it said “you are
needed in my holy army.” When I woke up the first thing I saw was
the television with a phone number for me to call and I did and ohh brother
let me tell you I am saved and I want to save you.
What makes you think I need to be saved? You can’t even prove that
I believe that God is real and I know it because how He has showed Himself
real in my own life and how I have seen God show himself real in the lives
of friends and family.
But you could have just manifested these things in your mind.
You will know when you find God; all pain of life seems meaningless because
we who truly love god will get our eternal reward in heaven, because in
heaven everything is fine.
So the trade here is if I follow you and your church I am going to heaven?
What about helping other people? If I lived a good life would I be let
Not until you have accepted God, if you don’t accept God your soul
will be damned for eternity.
What about helping the poor? Shouldn’t helping people be more important
The thing is that people are born poor but it is okay because they will
go to heaven. That is, unless they become heathens.
At that moment the train passes and Francis darts across the tracks and
takes a sharp left to avoid any further conversation but before he can
get out of hearing range he heard Noah yell.
Do you want to buy a booklet to help my church they are only a hundred
dollars and you can make fifty dollars if you sell two.
Francis is long gone.
EXT. FRONT OF FRANCIS’ APARTMENT - EVENING
Francis stands in front of his apartment, changing his gaze from his apartment
window to the plants in his hand. After a hard gaze at each, Francis drops
to his knees and starts to dig with his hands.
After digging a small trench Francis begins to plant the flowers one by
one until all are planted.
Francis stands up covered in dirt and walks inside. We can see the light
in his apartment turn on followed by Francis in the window. Francis takes
a long look at the things he has just planted, smiles, and walks away
from the window.