Once and Again
Destiny Turns On The Radio

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Destiny Turns On The Radio

Lily and the producer appear behind the Curmudgeon to inform him that the commercial is about over. The producer asks whether he should go to a public service announcement. Why don't they just pop in a tape of a previous show? The Curmudgeon sighs, which apparently rouses the plucky guitars. They kick it as he flies into his office, leaving a bewildered Lily and producer standing there. The producer scrambles to cover the dead air screaming, "Ten seconds!" while Lily goes in search of the Curmudgeon. A split second later, the Curmudgeon plows into the booth, toting an old-school microphone. He arranges himself as Lily stands awkwardly off to the side, still carrying his soup. He orders the producer to put a caller through, and mutters, "Hell, it's not rocket science." Famous last words, clearly.

The plucky guitars kick it up as the Curmudgeon stumbles through an explanation of why he's now on the air instead of Dr. Scari. He takes a call from Darlene. She explains that she has an ex-husband whom she "still care[s] about on a human level," and "he no longer speaks to his mother. She was very rejecting; he was a bed-wetter." The Curmudgeon looks like he could use a Depends himself. Darlene's problem is that her mother-in-law is dying, and she knows that her ex-husband wants to make peace with her, but he can't talk to her, so should Darlene step in and say something? The Curmudgeon is speechless. After a few seconds, he manages to stammer, "Well...uh...I think...uh..." He looks around desperately and adds, "I think my colleague has an opinion about that." He waves a stunned Lily toward the mic. She just stands there, clutching soup. "Don't you, Lily?" he pleads. She cautiously approaches the Curmudgeon, and he slaps a set of headphones on her. She leans in toward the mic like she's about to eat it, and shouts, "Yes, yes I do." See, Lily's never done this before. I wonder if she'll be any good at it? "So your ex-husband was a bed-wetter," she says, as the camera pans back to show the producer shaking his head in dismay and wondering how long the line-up is at the pogey office.

Well, the commercials offered only a brief reprieve from the plucky guitars. They're still at it when we return. The camera pans over a lit "on-air" sign as Lily sniffles, "Well, good for you for surviving cancer. What grade are you in?" She blows her nose as the caller answers. The Curmudgeon looks decidedly uncomfortable. Time Passes. We fade into a shot of the Curmudgeon eating his soup and staring at Lily working the callers. Lily's talking about getting used to having a big bed to yourself after your husband leaves. Someone slips into the booth to hand her a bottle of water, which she accepts without breaking stride. Because she's A Natural. More Time Passes, and we fade in on the scene outside the booth, where station employees are gathered, listening and nodding their heads in admiration. Lily says, "Look, I'm no expert. I'm not a psychologist or anything, but I did have a husband who cheated on me. And I'm telling you, she knows. She just doesn't want to know she knows." She shoots a self-satisfied grin toward the production booth, where the producer and the Curmudgeon look blown away.

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Once and Again




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