The Wonder Years - Transcript

Episode 97: "Sex and Economics"

Written by Jon Harmon Feldman (teleplay), John Bunzel (story)
Transcribed by Kyle Gittins
Edited and corrected by Peter Reynders


OPENING SEQUENCE


INT. DAY. CLASSROOM.

[Classroom. The camera slowly pans across the students.]

NARRATOR: Junior year was a time of...exploration. A time for expanding horizons, broadening perspectives, seeking answers to little-known questions. It was an opportunity to grapple with the great issues of our day, which as it happened, boiled down to only two.

[The camera stops on KEVIN. He is looking down.]

[Shot of MISS FARMER's legs as she walks across the classroom.]

MISS FARMER:...there were only four independent republics, as compared to now. By the end of 1972, there's gonna be forty-one.

[The camera slowly pans up MISS FARMER as she leans against her desk and smiles.]

NARRATOR: One was sex.

MISS FARMER: So...now is everybody paying attention?

NARRATOR: Miss Farmer.

[Close shot of KEVIN looking up.]

NARRATOR: Our social studies teacher.

[Close shot of MISS FARMER.]

MISS FARMER: Who can tell me the names...of three African republics?

[Shot from behind MISS FARMER of the class.]

MISS FARMER: No one? Let's look at a map.

[MISS FARMER moves to the map and reaches up to pull it down.]

NARRATOR: In one of the great cosmic ironies of our time...

[Close shot of KEVIN looking at MISS FARMER off-screen. He squeezes his pencil, which breaks.]

[Shot of MISS FARMER. The camera pans up her legs.]

NARRATOR: The board of education had hired her to mold and develop our formative young minds.

[MISS FARMER turns toward the class.]

MISS FARMER: Domenick? Can you point out Liberia on the map?

[Close shot of DOMENICK at his desk.]

DOMENICK: It's, uh, that yellow one.

[Shot past students of MISS FARMER, hands on hips, as DOMENICK points.]

DOMENICK: Right there.

[MISS FARMER turns and glances at the map, then back to the students. She laughs.]

MISS FARMER: Perhaps you could come up and show us.

[Close shot of KEVIN leaning forward and looking at DOMENICK off-screen.]

[Close shot of DOMENICK.]

[Close shot of MISS FARMER smiling, with her arms folded.]

[Close shot of DOMENICK.]

DOMENICK: Uh, can't...m-my foot's asleep.

NARRATOR: Not an uncommon ailment in social studies that year.

[Bell rings.]

MISS FARMER: Alright. [Gestures] Why doesn't everybody just pass up their assignments...

[Shot of KEVIN and other students getting their things together.]

NARRATOR: All in all, if you were sixteen and male, it was agony - no one was immune. Which brings me back to the point.

[Close shot of MISS FARMER smiling.]

NARRATOR: For teenage boys, there were only two great issues - sex...

Cut to


EXT. DAY. GAS-STATION.

[Close shot of the gas pump ringing up the amount.]

[Wider shot of the pump through the car window as the attendant cuts into the shot.]

ATTENDANT: That'll be three-sixty-nine.

[Shot past ATTENDANT of KEVIN.]

NARRATOR: And, of course, economics.

KEVIN: Uh..sure.

NARRATOR: And let me be clear about this...

[Wider shot of the car and ATTENDANT.]

NARRATOR: By "economics", I mean cold, hard, cash. Not that I had any.

[KEVIN hands ATTENDANT some money.]

[Shot of RANDY and KEVIN, and ATTENDANT.]

ATTENDANT: Forty-nine cents short.

[Close shot of KEVIN looking at the money.]

KEVIN: Uh...one second.

[Shot from behind KEVIN as he turns to RICKY in the back seat.]

KEVIN: Any of you guys got fifty cents?

[Close shot of RICKY frowning.]

RICKY: Not me.

[Shot of RANDY, KEVIN and ATTENDANT.]

RANDY: Sorry, man. I'm tapped.

KEVIN: Wait a minute. Between the two of you, you can't come up with a lousy half-buck?

[Close shot of RANDY.]

RANDY: Hey, I paid last week.

[Shot of RANDY, KEVIN and the attendant. KEVIN frowns, and starts to look in the glove-box.]

NARRATOR: Amazing. Even with my job delivering Chinese food two nights a week...

[KEVIN glances back at ATTENDANT.]

KEVIN: Be right with you.

NARRATOR: The best I could do when it came to cash-flow, was...

[KEVIN puts something in the attendant's hand.]

KEVIN: There.

ATTENDANT: It's a potato chip.

[Close shot of KEVIN looking at it.]

KEVIN: Oh, yeah. Guess it is.

[Close shot of ATTENDANT frowning.]

ATTENDANT: Get outta here...!

KEVIN: Right.

[Wide shot of the "Chongmobile" as KEVIN drives off.]

NARRATOR: Face it, poverty was ruining my good name, my reputation. Not to mention my my credit-rating.

Cut to


EXT. NIGHT."THE POINT".

KEVIN: What's that sound?

NARRATOR: Not to mention my love-life.

WINNIE: What sound?

KEVIN: That one. There it is again.

WINNIE: It's...my stomach. It's growling.

KEVIN: Oh.

NARRATOR: Not to mention my girlfriend's digestive tract.

WINNIE: I thought you said you were taking me out to dinner tonight.

KEVIN: Oh. Yeah.

WINNIE: Kevin, I'm really hungry. Can't we just...get something?

KEVIN: Well, uh, yeah I think...eating out is over-rated. And you know, the service is always slow. Plus the food is never that good. You know, I read somewhere that anything ya eat after nine o'clock goes right to your hips. Didn't you read that?

WINNIE: I think I'd like to go home now.

KEVIN:...right...

NARRATOR: Fact! This cashflow thing was beginning to cloud my judgement.

Cut to


INT. MORNING. SCHOOL HALLWAY.

[KEVIN is walking up the crowded hallway.]

NARRATOR: And so, desperation led me to consider once-unthinkable options.

[KEVIN pauses and looks at the bulletin board.]

NARRATOR: In other words - I needed a second job.

[The camera pans down the bulletin board.]

NARRATOR: Preferably something that didn't require a name-tag and a shovel. Or a Baggie and a scoop.

[Close shot of KEVIN. He sighs.]

KEVIN: Brother....

[Wider shot of KEVIN ad the bulletin board as MISS FARMER approaches and pins up a card.]

NARRATOR: And then, just as luck and money were running out...

[MISS FARMER looks at KEVIN and smiles.]

MISS FARMER: Oh! Hi, Kevin.

KEVIN: Hi.

[KEVIN smiles.]

[Shot of MISS FARMER walking away down the hallway.]

NARRATOR: Lust and fortune stepped in.

[Close shot of KEVIN looking back to the bulletin board off-screen.]

[Close shot of MISS FARMER's card. "Students wanted for painting project. 123 Dixon St. After school"]

NARRATOR: And opportunity knocked.

Cut to


EXT. DAY. MISS FARMER'S HOUSE.

[Close shot of the door-knocker as KEVIN bangs it.]

MISS FARMER: Kevin! Hi!

KEVIN: Hi. I, uh, came about the job.

MISS FARMER: [Laughs] Well, gee, you certainly got here fast!

KEVIN: Yeah, well, it's right on the way.

MISS FARMER: Oh...

KEVIN: Besides, you know what they say - "the early worm gets the bird".

[MISS FARMER looks slightly puzzled.]

KEVIN: Anyway, uh, here I am.

MISS FARMER: Well, good! Why don't you come on in? I'm making some lemonade.

NARRATOR: And the formalities out of the way, negotiations began.

MISS FARMER: Sugar?

KEVIN: Hmmm?

MISS FARMER: For your lemonade?

KEVIN: Oh. Yeah...

MISS FARMER: So? Don't you even want to know what the job is?

KEVIN: Well, it's, uh, painting, right? I've mean I've done lots of painting - all over the place.

NARRATOR: Two storm-windows for Dad, and Wayne's forehead when I was six. But who was counting?

MISS FARMER: Oh, I don't know...[sighs]...maybe I should have it done professionally.

NARRATOR: But at that moment I'd have killed to keep professionals from her house.

KEVIN: Hey, why hire them when you got me?

NARRATOR: Babe.

MISS FARMER: Well...if you really think you can.

KEVIN: Course I can. So...[sips]...what would I be painting?

MISS FARMER: The house.

KEVIN: The house? The whole house?

MISS FARMER: [Giggles] No - just the outside. The thing is...[sighs]...I don't have much money.

[MISS FARMER moves to the cookie jar on a shelf.]

NARRATOR: And of course, right then I should have known I was in over my head.

[Close shot of KEVIN.]

NARRATOR: I should have known.

[Close shot of MISS FARMER approaching.]

NARRATOR: I should have known, but...

MISS FARMER: How does...five-hundred dollars sound?

[Close shot of KEVIN perking up slightly.]

[Close shot of MISS FARMER looking down. the camera pans down to her hands holding five one-hundred-dollar bills. Bit of heavenly music, and "We're in the Money".]

NARRATOR: And that's when it happened. Right then. Right there.

[Close shot past the money of KEVIN. The camera zooms in slowly.]

NARRATOR: Two great forces of nature converged. Beauty...and cash.

MISS FARMER [V/O]: Course, you would take care of supplies.

[Close shot of MISS FARMER.]

MISS FARMER: Can you start this weekend?

[Close shot past the money of KEVIN. He is looking at the money.]

KEVIN: Well...

Cut to


INT. EVENING. ARNOLD LIVING ROOM.

[Wide shot of JACK and KEVIN sitting on opposite ends of the couch.]

JACK: Painting? What do you know about painting?

[Close shot of KEVIN.]

KEVIN: Dad, what's there to know? I mean, there's the house...and you paint it.

NARRATOR: Seemed simple enough to me.

[Close shot of JACK.]

JACK: What kind of paint are you using? Latex or enamel?

[Wide shot of both of them.]

KEVIN: Uh...blue.

JACK: You know what supplies to buy?

KEVIN: Well...

JACK: You have a crew to work with?

NARRATOR: Jeez, what was this - trade school?

KEVIN: Hey, I have a couple guys...in mind.

JACK: Well, just make sure you know what you're doing. Painting's hard enough even when you're good at it.

[JACK changes the channel with the remote.]

[Close shot of KEVIN frowning and looking away.]

NARRATOR: And there you had it - the unflagging support of hearth and home.

[Wide shot of KEVIN rising and walking toward the kitchen.]

[He passes WAYNE who is repairing a lava-lamp.]

WAYNE: Better hope it's one of those paint-by-number houses.

KEVIN: Shut up, butthead!

[KEVIN exits past the camera.]

[WAYNE makes a face at KEVIN off-screen, and returns to his lamp.]

NARRATOR: After all, if there was one thing I didn't need, it was my family bringing me down.

Cut to


INT. DAY. SCHOOL HALLWAY.

RANDY: Are you out of you're mind?

NARRATOR: I had my friends to do that.

RANDY: Paint a house? A whole house?

RICKY: That sounds like work!

KEVIN: I thought you guys needed the money.

[RICKY and RANDY look at each other, and nod in agreement.]

RANDY: How much you paying?

NARRATOR: Let's see, here...five-hundred divided by three, comes to...

KEVIN: Twenty bucks a man?

[RANDY and RICKY look at each other and start laughing. They walk away.]

NARRATOR: OK, if that's the way they wanted it - fine.

[Bell rings.]

Cut to


INT. DAY. SCHOOL CAFETERIA.

[Close shot of KEVIN tapping his pencil on a table, and glancing around.]

NARRATOR: After all, I didn't need them. What I needed were men. Men who took joy in their work. Solid, blue-collar men.

[Wide shot of KEVIN past DONNELLY. DONNELLY has his feet up.]

NARRATOR: Men like...

[Close shot of DONNELLY launching a rubberband toward the ceiling.]

NARRATOR: Jimmy Donnelly...

[The camera pans across.]

NARRATOR: Eddie Horvath...

[HORVATH has a long string of gum hanging off his nose.]

NARRATOR: And Joey Spinoza.

[SPINOZA shoots a spitwad at a piece of paper.]

[Shot past DONNELLY's feet of KEVIN looking at the guys.]

NARRATOR: I dunno, call it instinct, but somehow, I knew I'd found my crew.

[KEVIN rises and approaches, smiling.]

KEVIN: So guys. Want to make a few dollars?

[Wide shot of the guys straightening up.]
NARRATOR: Bingo.

[Close shot of Donelly looking at KEVIN off-screen.]

DONNELLY: Dollars?

Cut to


INT. DAY. PAINT STORE.

[Close shot of a paint can on the mixing-machine.]

NARRATOR: And so with that, my team was complete.

[The camera pulls back. SPINOZA is trying to watch the paint can, while HORVATH touches it gingerly.]

NARRATOR: Sure, maybe they weren't much on experience...

The camera pulls back to reveal Kevin walking past the guys, holding a paint tray. Donnelly follows him]

NARRATOR: But they did have their good points. They worked hard, they worked fast. But most of all, they worked cheap.

[KEVIN and DONNELLY pause near a stack of paint cans.]

DONNELLY: So, Arnold. When you said a few dollars, exactly how few were you talkin' about?

KEVIN: I'm not sure. Ya know, I gotta buy supplies...and there's overhead...

DONNELLY: In ballpark figures.

KEVIN: Twenty...

[Close shot of DONNELLY.]

[Close shot of KEVIN.]

KEVIN: Four...

[Close shot of DONNELLY frowning.]

[Close shot of KEVIN.]

KEVIN: Ninety-five.

[KEVIN grabs a can of paint and starts to walk off.]

[Shot of DONNELLY. He looks off and shakes his head.]

DONNELLY: Thirty.

KEVIN: Thirty!?

NARRATOR: So this guy wanted to play hardball, huh?

KEVIN: Sorry. Twenty-six is my limit.

[KEVIN takes a can of paint from another stack.]

DONNELLY: Twenty-eight. That's as low as I go.

[Close shot of KEVIN shouting at DONNELLY off-screen.]

KEVIN: Twenty-seven.

DONNELLY: I'll go talk to my boys.

[Wide shot of both as DONNELLY walks away.]

[Close shot of KEVIN approaching the clerk.]

NARRATOR: Heh-heh. Game, set, and match - Arnold. At eighty-some bucks for labor, plus materials, I'd have enough left from the five hundred to qualify as a small fortune.

[The camera pulls back behind the clerk as KEVIN sets his paint and supplies down.]

CLERK: OK. One-forty-two...for the paint.

[Close shot of the clerk.]

CLERK: That's twenty-eight...for the brushes.

[Close shot of KEVIN frowning and glancing off.]

CLERK [V/O]: Thirty-five for the rollers. And sixteen bucks for the tarp.

NARRATOR: A very small fortune.

[KEVIN frowns.]

KEVIN: One-forty-two for the paint? How'd you get that?

[Close shot of the clerk.]

CLERK: I added!

[Shot of KEVIN looking in his wallet as DONNELLY and HORVATH approach from behind.]

CLERK [V/O]: You got a grand-total of two-fifty-eight eighty-eight.

DONNELLY: OK. We're in.

[DONNELLY walks off, followed by HORVATH, followed by SPINOZA.]

NARRATOR: I was kinda like watching my wallet bleed to death.

[KEVIN looks at the clerk off-screen.]

NARRATOR: Still, at least now maybe the hemorrhage was complete.

[Close shot of the clerk.]

CASHIER: Plus tax.

[Close shot of KEVIN. He frowns as he pays.]

Cut to


EXT. DAY. MISS FARMER'S HOUSE.

[Wide shot of the house. Sound of bird calls.]

[KEVIN and his "crew" walk into the shot.]

NARRATOR: The next morning, we arrived - on time, ready to tackle the task at hand. With just one little problem.

[Wide shot of the guys.]

DONNELLY: You never said anything about it being two storeys.

[KEVIN frowns, and points with a brush.]

KEVIN: That's not two storeys.

DONNELLY: That's a window! Right there! Man, this is gonna cost more. I'd say...at least - fifty.

KEVIN: Fifty!? Yeah, but we agreed on -

DONNELLY: Fifty. Up front, and in cash.

NARRATOR: It was a holdup worthy of Jesse James. And I wasn't buying.

KEVIN: Oh, no. No way, forget it!

DONNELLY: But Arnold -

KEVIN: Donnelly, we had a deal. And a deal's a deal. Period.

NARRATOR: Hey, I was no patsy. After all, I had an investment here.

MISS FARMER [V/O]: Kevin!

[Close shot of MISS FARMER's feet as she steps onto the porch. The camera pans up to her face.]

NARRATOR: Unfortunately, at that moment, the stock market crashed.

MISS FARMER: I'm so glad you're here! Are you just about ready to get started?

[Close shot of KEVIN.]

KEVIN: Uh, sure! Just about.

MISS FARMER: Good!

[Wide shot of the guys. MISS FARMER goes back inside.]

DONNELLY: OK, Arnold. So we have a deal?

[DONNELLY holds out his hand.]

KEVIN: Fine...

NARRATOR: What else could I do? I was stymied. Greed and temptation had conspired against me.

KEVIN: Just get to work now, OK?

DONNELLY: You got it.

[DONNELLY divides up the money and passes it out.]

NARRATOR: And then there was really nothing left to say, but -

DONNELLY: Boys? Breaktime!

[The guys walk away. KEVIN looks after them.]

NARRATOR: Right.

Fade to


EXT. DAY. MISS FARMER'S HOUSE.

[Close shot of SPINOZA spreading out a tarp.]

["Takin' Care of Business" - Bachman-Turner Overdrive plays through the scene.]

[Close shot of paint cans as they are opened.]

[KEVIN pours some paint into a tray, and hands it to DONNELLY.]

[The camera pulls back to show the guys painting.]

NARRATOR: So that weekend we got to work. We banded together as a team. It was time to put economic differences behind us.

[Close shot of KEVIN smiling.]

NARRATOR: It was time...to paint.

[Shot of a gloved hand painting the window-frame, then the glass. The camera pans to show HORVATH looking at his mistake.]

NARRATOR: Sure, maybe we had no idea what we were doing. So what?

[Shot of DONNELLY using a paint-scraper.]

NARRATOR: What we lacked in experience, we made up with...

[DONNELLY bangs the scraper into the wood.]

[Close shot of KEVIN frowning.]

NARRATOR: Lack of experience. And after two days of work...

[Shot of SPINOZA painting his shoe.]

NARRATOR: One thing was crystal-clear...

[Wide shot of the guys. KEVIN steps off the ladder.]

NARRATOR: This was a disaster.

KEVIN: Can't you guys go any faster?

DONNELLY: We're going as fast as we can.

[Close shot of KEVIN getting more paint. He looks up and gestures.]

KEVIN: Hey, Donnelly, why don't you take that top window up there?

[Close shot of DONNELLY.]

DONNELLY: I'm afraid of heights.

[Close shot of KEVIN. He frowns.]

KEVIN: I paid you for a second floor.

DONNELLY: I know. I appreciate it! [Smiles.]

[HORVATH spills a can of paint, which bounces in front of KEVIN.]

[Close shot of SPINOZA on the ladder.]

HORVATH: Hey, Arnold. We're gonna need some more paint.

[Close shot of KEVIN. He frowns.]

NARRATOR: Time was money, paint was money...I guess I knew what I had to do.

[KEVIN gets up, walks around the house.]

NARRATOR: I had to ask Miss Farmer for an extra hundred dollars. It shouldn't be difficult.

[KEVIN opens the gate to the backyard, walks forward and pauses.]

NARRATOR: This was business - simple economics. It had nothing to do with anything else.

[Close shot of MISS FARMER, wearing a zebra-patterned bathing suit and reclining on a chaise-lounge, reading.]

[Close shot of KEVIN smiling a little. The camera zooms in slowly.]

NARRATOR: Nothing to do with long legs, with soft skin, with the way a woman smelled in the morning.

[Shot of MISS FARMER as KEVIN approaches.]

KEVIN: Miss Farmer? You got a second?

MISS FARMER: Hi, Kevin!

KEVIN: Uh...hi!

MISS FARMER: I guess it must look kind of silly - me sunbathing here without a pool.

NARRATOR: But somehow, "silly" wasn't exactly the word that came to mind.

MISS FARMER: So? How's it going?

KEVIN: Oh, fine! It's just...actually, uh, what I came to tell ya is I think it's gonna cost a little more than I thought.

MISS FARMER: Really? Well, you should have told me! You can always come to me when you have a problem.

[MISS FARMER pulls out a wad of money from her bag.]

[Close shot of KEVIN smiling.]

NARRATOR: Holy cow! This was gonna be easier than I thought. I was funded, I was flush! I was back in the chips.

MISS FARMER: Here!

[MISS FARMER holds out a bill and smiles.]

MISS FARMER: Here's an extra ten dollars.

NARRATOR: I was working...for peanuts.

[Close shot of KEVIN. He forces a smile.]

KEVIN: Thanks.

[Close shot of MISS FARMER smiling.]

MISS FARMER: I'm glad I could help.

Cut to


INT. DAY. PAINT STORE.

[Wide shot of KEVIN and the clerk at the counter.]

CLERK: There's paint, paint remover, pans, brushes...anything else?

[KEVIN looks over his shoulder.]

KEVIN: A ladder.

[Close shot of the clerk.]

CLERK: Oh, yeah!

[Shot past the clerk of KEVIN frowning.]

CLERK: You starting a new house?

[KEVIN frowns and nods.]

KEVIN: Yeah, I'm painting the whole block.

[Close shot of the clerk. He smiles.]

CLERK: Oooh...

[Shot past the clerk of KEVIN as he gets his wallet.]

CLERK: OK...let's add it up. That's forty-one dollars.

NARRATOR: It was amazing. Forty-one on the nose. My once-magnificent fortune was now completely gone.

CLERK: Plus there's tax. [Smiles.]

[Wide shot of both as KEVIN slaps some money into the clerk's hand.]

CLERK: Thanks! [Smiles.]

Cut to


EXT. DAY. MISS FARMER'S HOUSE.

[KEVIN is up on a ladder.]

NARRATOR: I was flat broke. Busted. My only hope was to cut my losses and finish the job before it finished me.

HORVATH [V/O]: Hey, Donnelly, over here. Look.

[Shot of HORVATH and SPINOZA looking in a window. DONNELLY approaches and looks in.]

DONNELLY: Whoa!

[Close shot of KEVIN frowning.]

KEVIN: Hey guys!

[Shot from behind KEVIN of the guys. They look up.]

KEVIN: You think we can get painting done here?

DONNELLY: Lighten up, Arnold. We're on a break!

[Close shot of KEVIN frowning.]

KEVIN: Alright, that's it!

[KEVIN comes down the ladder.]

NARRATOR: I'd had enough.

[Close shot of DONNELLY frowning at KEVIN, then looking through the window.]

NARRATOR: I was fed up with these jokers. I'd been pushed to my limits.

[KEVIN approaches the guys.]

KEVIN: Hey, you guys took a break twenty minutes ago. It's time to get some work done now.

DONNELLY: Yeah, yeah, yeah...

NARRATOR: And maybe that's when it hit me...

[KEVIN frowns, moves to the window, and looks in.]

NARRATOR: The horrible truth.

[Shot of MISS FARMER dusting some shelves.]

[Close shot of KEVIN looking at the guys.]

NARRATOR: I was letting this poor school teacher's house be painted by...a bunch of perverts.

KEVIN: You know, I can't believe you! I am really, really surprised.

[Shot of the guys looking at KEVIN.]

KEVIN: Donnelly, Spinoza, Horvath. I hired you. And from the first day all you've been doing is gold-bricking...and daydreaming.

[Shot past KEVIN of the guys.]

KEVIN: From now on, there's gonna be no more breaks, and no daydreaming. Do I make myself clear?!

[Close shot of KEVIN.]

KEVIN: Now, you're gonna take pride in your work. And you're gonna paint! And you're not gonna stop painting until this job is finished!

[Close shot of the guys. They are thinking.]

NARRATOR: There! It was a summons to arms.

[Close shot of KEVIN.]

NARRATOR: An appeal to old-fashioned red-blooded ethics that called for only one reply.

[Shot of the guys.]

DONNELLY: We quit!

[Shot of the guys walking past KEVIN. KEVIN gestures.]

HORVATH: Seeya.

KEVIN: What do you mean, "you quit"? You can't just quit.

[Close shot of KEVIN gesturing.]

KEVIN: I already paid you. I paid for those overalls!

[Shot past KEVIN of the guys walking away.]

KEVIN: And those gloves...

[Close shot of KEVIN.]

NARRATOR: But suddenly - I was on my own.

Cut to


INT. EVENING. ARNOLD DINING ROOM.

[Wide shot of the Arnold's at the table. NORMA is serving.]

[Close shot of NORMA looking with concern at KEVIN off-screen.]

NORMA: Kevin? Honey, are you alright?

[Wide shot of all.]

KEVIN: Yeah, I'm fine.

[NORMA sits down.]

WAYNE: Hey, there's paint in my potatoes!

KEVIN: Shut up, butthead!

NARRATOR: That night I was in no mood for jokes. Or potatoes.

[Close shot of NORMA.]

NORMA: You sure you're not working too hard?

[Close shot of KEVIN.]

KEVIN: Yeah! Mom, I told ya, I'm fine.

[Close shot of NORMA serving herself.]

KEVIN [V/O]: Really.

[Close shot of KEVIN looking at his food.]

KEVIN: Besides...it's my job.

[Close shot of JACK smiling, and looking at his food.]

NORMA [V/O]: I know. But you look exhausted.

[Close shot of NORMA.]

NORMA: Honey, no one would blame you if you quit.

[Shot past NORMA of KEVIN. He pauses with a forkful of food, and glances to JACK, then back to NORMA.]

KEVIN: They wouldn't?

[Close shot of NORMA. She smiles and shakes her head.]

NARRATOR: And there it was - peace with honor.

[Shot past NORMA of of KEVIN. He looks at the carrot on his fork.]

JACK [V/O]: Quit?!

[KEVIN looks toward JACK off-screen.]

[Close shot of JACK. He glances from KEVIN to NORMA off-screen.]

JACK: He's not gonna quit.

[Close shot of NORMA looking at JACK off-screen.]

NARRATOR: Woops.

[Wide shot of all.]

JACK: Ya know, Kevin, at first I had my doubts.

[Close shot past JACK of KEVIN.]

JACK: But seeing how hard you've been working...

[Close shot of JACK.]

JACK: I gotta say...I'm impressed, son.

[JACK pats KEVIN's shoulder.]

[Close shot past JACK of KEVIN.]

NARRATOR: And I guess that's when I realized. Looking into my father's eye's...

[KEVIN and JACK glance at NORMA off-screen.]

[Close shot of JACK smiling.]

NARRATOR: Seeing his admiration, his trust, his total mis-reading of the situation...

[Close shot of KEVIN looking at JACK off-screen then looking away.]

NARRATOR: I knew there was only one thing to do.

Cut to


EXT. NIGHT. MISS FARMER'S HOUSE.

[Wide shot of the house and street as KEVIN parks in front.]

[KEVIN gets out and trots toward the house.]

NARRATOR: I was gonna turn a profit from this thing, or die trying.

[Close shot of KEVIN approaching the camera.]

NARRATOR: Sure, I'd gotten confused by beauty, by lust, by greed.

[Shot of the door as KEVIN walks past the camera and knocks on the door.]

NARRATOR: Nope.

[KEVIN turns around and rests on a post.]

NARRATOR: From now on, business was business, was...

[Fantasy scene. MISS FARMER opens the door, all dolled-up in a sequined red dress. Bluesy saxophone music plays. KEVIN turns around, and she grabs KEVIN's shirt and pulls him toward her.]

MISS FARMER: I've been waiting for you.

NARRATOR: Never mind...

KEVIN: You have?

[Back to reality. Shot of the inside of the door as MISS FARMER opens it, revealing KEVIN. He turns around.]

MISS FARMER: Oh, Kevin!

KEVIN: Oh, hi.

[Close shot of MISS FARMER.]

MISS FARMER: I'm glad you stopped by. Won't you come in? [Gestures.]

[Wider shot of the kitchen as they enter.]

MISS FARMER: I just made some lemonade. Would you like some?

[MISS FARMER walks out of the shot while KEVIN closes the door.]

KEVIN: No thanks. I just came over to tell you something.

[Shot of MISS FARMER approaching the sink, and glancing over her shoulder.]

MISS FARMER: Oh? What?

[Shot of KEVIN approaching, then pausing.]

NARRATOR: At that moment, I noticed something about Miss Farmer that I'd never before seen.

[Shot of MISS FARMER looking at KEVIN expectantly. The camera pans across the room to a man holding some papers.]

NARRATOR: She had a large man in her kitchen.

[Wide shot of the three of them.]

MISS FARMER: Oh, Kevin. This is Mr. Kaplan.

[Close shot of MISS FARMER. She smiles.]

MISS FARMER: He just...bought my house.

[Close shot of KEVIN.]

KEVIN: What?!

[Close shot of MR. KAPLAN.]

MR. KAPLAN: Please, Lisa...[smiles]...Dave.

[Close shot of MISS FARMER.]

MISS FARMER: We just signed the papers this morning.

[Shot of KEVIN and MISS FARMER. KEVIN glances at MR. KAPLAN off-screen, while MISS FARMER turns to the counter.]

NARRATOR: I couldn't believe it. She'd really done this?

[KEVIN frowns and steps closer.]

KEVIN: You're moving?

[Close shot past KEVIN of MISS FARMER.]

MISS FARMER: Not far...it's just a little apartment across town.

[Shot past MISS FARMER of KEVIN looking concerned.]

[Shot past KEVIN of MISS FARMER. She looks down, then off and smiles.]

MISS FARMER: I love this house. You know, when I first moved in, I thought one day I'd get married, and raise my family here...

[Close shot of MR. KAPLAN frowning.]

[Shot past MISS FARMER of KEVIN.]

MISS FARMER: I just don't know what it is about this neighborhood.

[Close shot of MISS FARMER. She looks off.]

MISS FARMER: The mailman, my next-door neighbor with his lawn-mower...seems these guys see a single girl and all they want to do is take advantage of her.

[MISS FARMER looks at KEVIN.]

[Close shot of KEVIN glancing off.]

KEVIN: Oh...

[Close shot of MR. KAPLAN. He gestures with the papers.]

MR. KAPLAN: Uh...

[Close shot of KEVIN.]

[Close shot of MISS FARMER looking down.]

NARRATOR: And somehow, right then, I began to get an inkling of what was really going on here.

[Close shot of KEVIN.]

KEVIN: Well, uh...I guess you won't want me to finish painting the house, then, right?

[KEVIN smiles and gestures.]

[Close shot of MISS FARMER smiling.]

MISS FARMER: Why, Kevin! Of course I do! After all, we made a deal, didn't we?

[MISS FARMER crosses in front of KEVIN to the lemonade.]

NARRATOR: I guess I already knew what came next.
[MISS FARMER smiles at KEVIN.]

MISS FARMER: And a deal's a deal.

[Wide shot from behind MR. KAPLAN. KEVIN and MISS FARMER are at the counter in the background.]

NARRATOR: Yeah, that was it - the bottom-line. In anyone's ledger.

[KEVIN approaches MR. KAPLAN.]

KEVIN: Mr. Kaplan...

[Close shot of MR. KAPLAN looking up from his paper.]

KEVIN: Ya know, this painting is getting pretty expensive. I'm gonna need some extra money to finish it.

MR. KAPLAN: Don't look at me kid. I just paid fifty-five grand, for a forty-thousand-dollar house.

[MR. KAPLAN nods, and looks past KEVIN.]

[KEVIN looks over his shoulder.]

NARRATOR: In a world where everyone was taking advantage of everybody else...

[Shot of MISS FARMER reaching up into a cabinet.]

NARRATOR: Sex and economics were facts of life.

[Shot of KEVIN and MR. KAPLAN looking at her off-screen.]

NARRATOR: For all of us.

Cut to


INT. MORNING. CLASSROOM.

[Shot of the empty teacher's desk and the blackboard.]

[MISS FARMER walks into the shot.]

MISS FARMER: The teenagers in Africa have a life that's very much different than yours...

[Shot of KEVIN looking at her off-screen, and writing in his book.]

NARRATOR: I continued to see Miss Farmer every day, but, somehow, it wasn't the same after that.

MISS FARMER: They usually spend their time working...

Cut to


EXT. NIGHT. "MR. KAPLAN'S" HOUSE.

[Close shot of KEVIN on a ladder, painting.]

NARRATOR: After all, in a way, she had done me a favor - taught me a lesson in "life".
[KEVIN looks around and sighs.]

NARRATOR: To wit, when it came to beautiful women and money, it would always end like this -

[KEVIN resumes painting.]

NARRATOR: Some guy would get stuck on a ladder in November...

MR. KAPLAN [V/O]: Hey!

[KEVIN glances down.]

[Close shot of MR. KAPLAN in his bathrobe on the porch, holding his newspaper.]

MR. KAPLAN: You missed a spot! [Gestures.]

["If I Didn't Care" - The Inkspots starts.]

[MR. KAPLAN walks toward the open door.]

[Wide shot of the house as MR. KAPLAN closes the door, and KEVIN resumes painting.]

[The camera slowly pulls back to take in the entire house.]

NARRATOR: And some guy would end up alone. All I know for sure is, it took me six weeks to finish painting that house. It cost me two-hundred-and-fourteen dollars of my own hard-earned money. And the next spring, Mr. Kaplan put up aluminum siding.

Fade to


CLOSING CREDITS

Supporting Cast

Miss Farmer - Rebecca Staab
Donnelly - Seth Green
Paint Clerk - William Bronder
Mr. Kaplan - Jack McGee


Please mail to reynders@merck.de Peter if you find any errors, or if you have any comments or suggestions.

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