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                           COLD OPENING


FADE IN:

INT. LIVING ROOM - EVENING

BILL ENTERS. LAUREN JUMPS UP FROM THE COUCH.

                         LAUREN

           Dad's home!

                         BILL

           Aw, did you miss me, honey?

                         LAUREN

           Now, I can open my birthday presents!

LAUREN RUNS INTO THE KITCHEN.

TINA RUNS DOWN THE STAIRS.

                         TINA

           Daddy, yeah!

                         BILL

           There's my little princess.

TINA RUNS BY HIM INTO THE KITCHEN.

                         TINA

           Birthday cake!

BILL SIGHS.

                         BILL

           I need to get a dog.



INT. KITCHEN - CONTINUOUS

JUDY HAS A CAKE AND PRESENTS LAID OUT. THE FAMILY GATHERS AROUND
AS LAUREN RIPS OPEN HER FIRST PACKAGE.
 
                         JUDY

           That's your big gift, Lauren. Are you

           sure you want to open it first?

BRIAN PUTS HIS HAND UP TO STOP LAUREN.

                         BRIAN

           Just remember, this moment right now is

           the best your life will ever get.

LAUREN FINISHES OPENING THE PACKAGE. SQUEALS.

                         LAUREN

           A cell phone! Oh my god!

BILL WALKS IN.

                         BILL

           Sounds like she likes it.

                         LAUREN

           Mom and Dad, you're the best.

SHE GIVES JUDY AND BILL BIG HUGS. BRIAN READS THE PACKAGE.

                         BRIAN

           Wow, this is the Nokuma 365i. You can

           find your exact coordinates from a

           global positioning system. It even

           takes pictures with 5 megapixel

           resolution. This is really high-tech, Dad.

                         BILL

           Yeah. I picked out the color. Pretty

           blue, don't you think?
 
                         LAUREN

           I love it. I'm going to call everyone I

           know.

SHE STARTS DIALING AND WALKS OUT OF THE KITCHEN.

                         JUDY

           What about your other gifts?

                         BRIAN

           It's probably going to be a few days

           before she calms down.

                         LAUREN (OS)

           Can you believe it? Oh my god, tell

           Tammy. No, wait. Let me call Tammy...

                         BILL

           I guess this means we can return the

           rest of the gifts.

                         BRIAN

           Is there anything good I can steal?

JUDY TOSSES A PACKAGE TO BRIAN.

                         JUDY

           You want a matching set of bra and

           panties?

HE DROPS THE BOX LIKE IT'S ON FIRE.

                         BRIAN

           I can't believe you just let me touch

           that.
 
                         BILL

           You should try the panties sometimes,

           son. They're really quite comfortable.

BRIAN STARES AT BILL FOR A MOMENT.

                         BRIAN

           You know, Dad. One of these days, I'm

           not going to know if you're joking or not.

                         BILL

           Suit yourself.

LAUREN COMES BACK INTO THE KITCHEN. STILL ON THE PHONE.

                         LAUREN

           ...and then I'm going to call Bobby and

           then I'm going to call Kelly, or maybe

           Burke. Who do you think I should call

           first? Of course I called you first.

SHE PUTS HER HAND OVER THE MOUTHPIECE AND ROLLS HER EYES. WALKS
BACK OUT.

                         TINA

           Can I cut the cake? I want to eat a

           piece before it's my birthday.

                                                  CUT TO:

                           MAIN TITLES
 


                             ACT ONE


INT. KITCHEN - MORNING

THE CLAN EATS BREAKFAST.

                         LAUREN

           I still can't believe you guys got me a

           cell phone.

                         JUDY

           It's what you said you wanted.

                         LAUREN

           You're so cool.

                         BILL

           And, it was on sale.

                         JUDY

           Just pretend you didn't hear that, honey.

LAUREN OBSESSIVELY PUNCHES IN NUMBERS.

                         LAUREN

           What? Sorry, Mom, I was sending a text

           message to my friend, Jamie.

                         JUDY

           Oh. No problem. Tell Jamie I said hi.

                         LAUREN

           (SARCASTIC) Yeah right, Mom.

BRIAN ENTERS.

                         BRIAN

           She's still on that thing? It's like

           the Energizer Bunny, if he was a

           pimple-faced loser.
 
                         LAUREN

           You'd probably just use it to send

           messages to your geek friends in the

           Chemistry club.

                         BILL

           You're in the chemistry club?

                         BRIAN

           Yeah. We meet every Thursday, right

           after the student council.

                         JUDY

           You're on the student council?

                         BRIAN

           Don't you remember when I was making

           all those "vote for Brian" buttons?

                         JUDY

           I  thought that was just a craft

           project to make you feel good about

           yourself.

JUDY SETS DOWN A PLATE OF FOOD.

                         JUDY

           Okay, kids. Eat up before school. You

           need to have a good breakfast to start

           your day.

LAUREN PUSHES THE PLATE ASIDE. KEEPS PUNCHING AWAY AT HER PHONE.

                         BILL

           Your mother's right, dear.
 
                         LAUREN

           Not hungry.

BILL GRABS THE PLATE AND EATS A PIECE OF BACON.

                         BILL

           You just can't argue with kids these days.

BRIAN PUSHES HIS PLATE ASIDE.

                         BRIAN

           I should get going, too. I have a

           young scientists meeting at the museum.

TINA GRABS THE PLATE.

                         TINA

           Too smart for his own good, I say.

SHE GNAWS SOME BACON JUST LIKE BILL.

LAUREN AND BRIAN GRAB THEIR BAGS TO LEAVE.

                         JUDY

           Lauren, honey. Don't forget that we

           want you to be responsible with the

           phone. If your grades start to slip or

           I hear that you're goofing off with it

           in class, then we'll take it away.

                         LAUREN

           I know, Mom. I promise to put as much

           effort into school as you and dad did.

                         BILL

           Eh... Why don't you try to be more like

           Brian?
 
                         LAUREN

           Because, he's a dork.

                         BILL

           I love you, honey. I just want to know

           that all of my kids will have jobs to

           help pay for your Mom's and mine

           retirement.

BRIAN AND LAUREN EXIT.

                         JUDY

           Bill, do you think we're losing touch

           with our kids?

                         BILL

           No. What makes you say that?

                         JUDY

           Well, I just watched an entire morning

           go by without eye contact from any of

           my offspring. It makes a mother

           suspicious.

                         BILL

           Oh, Honey. I'm looking at you.

BILL SNUGGLES UP TO JUDY.

                         JUDY

           You've got some bacon grease on your

           face, Bill.

                         BILL

           I thought you liked the taste of bacon,

           honey.
 
SHE WIPES HIS FACE WITH A TOWEL.

                         JUDY

           I like it on bacon.  (BEAT) I'm

           serious, Bill. I think this technology

           is driving the kids away from us. I

           mean, I don't even know what Brian does

           in his room all day.

                         BILL

           Judy, you probably don't want to know

           what Brian is doing in his room all day.

                         JUDY

           Stop it. You know he's on that computer

           all day. Who knows what he's doing. I

           read an article in TIME the other day

           that there are all sorts of horrible

           things on the internet.

                         BILL

           Judy, those magazines in your office

           are ancient. The internet probably

           isn't even around anymore.

                         JUDY

           I just think we should take a more

           active role in our children's lives.

                         BILL

           (SARCASTIC) Yeah, I'm sure they'd love

           that.
 
                         JUDY

           What's that supposed to mean?

                         BILL

           Nothing. It's just that... no teenager

           wants their parents nosing around in

           their life.

                         JUDY

           Not "nosing." Just... communicating on

           their level.

                         BILL

           Well, you'd better leave it up to me,

           then. We both know I'm the cool parent.

                         JUDY

           You are not!

                         BILL

           Come on. Who's the one that wrote that

           note to get Lauren out of her geometry

           test?

                         JUDY

           That was you?

BILL REALIZES HE HADN'T TOLD HER ABOUT THIS.

                         BILL

           Um, no. Lauren forged that. But which

           parent did she say would have written

           that note?

                         JUDY

           I'm just as cool as you.
 
                         BILL

           Sure you are, baby.

                         JUDY

           I'll bet I can make the kids think I'm

           cooler than you.

                         BILL

           Let's not get carried away.

JUDY SNIFFS THE AIR.

                         JUDY

           Is that fear? Do I smell an out of

           touch old man afraid of bonding with

           his children?

                         BILL

           Okay, that's enough. You're on. I'll

           prove to you that I'm more in touch

           with our kids then you are.

TINA TURNS FROM THE TABLE WITH BACON STRIPS PLASTERED ACROSS HER
FACE.

                         TINA

           I'm the amazing bacon girl!

                         JUDY

           Okay, Bill. You get one point there.
 

INT. BRIAN'S BEDROOM - DAY

BRIAN WORKS AT HIS COMPUTER. BILL WALKS INTO THE ROOM.

                         BILL

           Hey there, buddy boy.

                         BRIAN

           Buddy boy?

                         BILL

           Just checking in on my best pal. How's

           it hanging today?

                         BRIAN

           Do you mean, how is "it" literally

           hanging?

                         BILL

           It's just a saying, son. So, what are

           you doing home? Don't you have school

           today?

                         BRIAN

           Because I'm in the honor program, I get

           to take flex days when I work ahead in

           class.

                         BILL

           Flex days, huh? Yeah, I took a few of

           them in high school.

                         BRIAN

           It's a new program.
 
                         BILL

           Must be. We didn't work ahead for ours.

BRIAN CONTINUES WORKING. BILL NERVOUSLY WATCHES OVER HIM, TRYING
TO FIND A CONNECTION.

                         BILL

           So, is anybody still using that

           'internet' thing?

BRIAN LOOKS UP, MOMENTARILY STUNNED BY THE QUESTION.

                         BRIAN

           Um, yeah, Dad. It's probably the number

           one way to communicate these days.

                         BILL

           Hmm. How about that. Mind if I take it

           for a spin?

                         BRIAN

           Actually, I'm trying to get a little

           work done.

BILL SCOOTS BRIAN OFF THE CHAIR.

                         BILL

           You worked ahead. Let the old man have

           some fun. How do I fire this thing up?

                         BRIAN

           Just click here.

                         BILL

           That was easy. What is all of this?
 
                         BRIAN

           It's my home page. I have links to

           current news, a daily science fact and

           some chat groups for the new Star Wars

           movie.

                         BILL

           So, even on the internet, they know

           you're a geek.

                         BRIAN

           Thanks, Dad.

                         BILL

           What are these bookmarks?

                         BRIAN

           Those are other websites that I like to

           visit. It's mostly research stuff for

           school.

                         BILL

           (READING) Natural Science, Mechanical

           Science, Science and Physics  (HE LOOKS

           TO BRIAN) You've heard of sports, right?

                         BRIAN

           I was getting to it. The internet's a

           big place.

                         BILL

           Hmm, what's this one?

BRIAN JUMPS AT THE COMPUTER.
 
                         BRIAN

           Not that one!

BILL'S EYES LIGHT UP.

                         BILL

           Well, hello there.

                         BRIAN

           Oh, God.

BILL TURNS TO BRIAN.

                         BILL

           She's friendly.

                         BRIAN

           This is so humiliating.

BILL STANDS UP AND WALKS OVER TO BRIAN.

                         BILL

           Son... I don't know what to say about

           this.

                         BRIAN

           You're not mad are you?

                         BILL

           It's hard to explain, Brian. I'm a

           little choked up. I mean, I've checked

           your room for girly magazines and I

           never found any...

                         BRIAN

           You what?
 
                         BILL

           I didn't know it was all... online. I'm

           just so happy.

BILL GIVES BRIAN A VERY BIG, VERY UNCOMFORTABLE BEAR HUG.
 


INT. KITCHEN - DAY

JUDY STIRS COFFEE DEJECTEDLY. LINDA ENTERS.

                         LINDA

           Hey, Judy.

                         JUDY

           (MELANCHOLY) Hi, Linda.

                         LINDA

           Ooh, are you going to be all sad right

           now? I just wanted to get some olive

           oil. Ian and I are celebrating our

           three-month anniversary tonight.

                         JUDY

           Oh, that's sweet. You're going to cook

           for him?

                         LINDA

           Not exactly.

                         JUDY

           Great. Now, I'm sad and grossed out.

                         LINDA

           What's wrong?

                         JUDY

           Well, Bill and I were talking today

           about how we're losing touch with the

           kids. We got Lauren a cell phone for her

           birthday, but I think I'm going to hear

           from her even less.

                         LINDA

           That's part of growing up, Judy. Kids

           need to have some space.

                         JUDY

           Yeah, but I made a bet with Bill that I

           could connect with the kids better than

           he could.

                         LINDA

           You made a bet?

                         JUDY

           Yeah.

                         LINDA

           So, this is like better parenting

           through coercion?

                         JUDY

           I just want to be a part of my kid's

           life. Is that so bad?

                         LINDA

           Okay, if we're trying to beat Bill,

           then it's great. I have an idea: Why

           don't you use the cell phone to your

           advantage?
 
                       JUDY

           How?

LINDA PULLS OUT HER CELL PHONE.

                         LINDA

           Check it out. You can send her a

           picture and a message from my phone.

           That way you're speaking to her through

           the technology.

                         JUDY

           That's a great idea. She'll think I'm

           so hip.

                         LINDA

           I don't know if 'hip' is the word you

           want to use.

                         JUDY

           How does it work?

LINDA HOLDS UP THE PHONE.

                         LINDA

           Here, I'll take a picture of you.

                         JUDY

           It takes pictures?

                         LINDA

           Yeah, Ian and I were fooling around

           with it the other day.

LINDA PUTS THE PHONE DOWN.
 
                         LINDA

           He says he might use one of our "love

           photos" for the cover of his band's

           next album.

                         JUDY

           But, his band doesn't record albums.

                         LINDA

           You can't ruin my fun.

                         JUDY

           Just take my picture.

LINDA SNAPS A PHOTO.

                         LINDA

           Okay, now say something fun to go with it.

SHE HOLDS THE PHONE UP FOR JUDY.

                         JUDY

           (INTO PHONE) Hey, Lauren. Just wanted

           to drop you a line on the new phone.

           Hope you're being good--Oh my god,

           that's terrible!

                         LINDA

           It's okay. We'll re-record. Let me

           clear the last message. Okay, try again.

                         JUDY

           (INTO PHONE) What's up, Lauren. Um,

           word. Be cool--

                         LINDA

           Why don't we type something.
 
                        JUDY

           Great idea.

LINDA PUNCHES BUTTONS.

                         LINDA

           "Lauren. Just trying out the new phone.

           Pretty cool. Mom." There. Short and

           simple. She'll know you're reaching out

           to her, but not trying to hard.

JUDY GRABS THE PHONE AND READS THE MESSAGE.

                         JUDY

           That's great. How do I send it?

                         LINDA

           Just scroll to your picture and hit the

           green key.

                         JUDY

           Okay, here goes.

SHE PUSHES THE BUTTON.

                         JUDY

           Oh no! That's not the photo of me.

                         LINDA

           What do you mean?

SHE TURNS THE PHONE SIDEWAYS.

                         JUDY

           Is that a Winger tattoo?

                         LINDA

           You sent her a picture of me!

JUDY DROPS THE PHONE.
 
                         JUDY

           Ahh! I can't believe I just touched

           that.  (BEAT) Oh my god! I just sent

           that to Lauren.

BILL AND BRIAN ENTER. BRIAN'S FACE IS PASTY WHITE.

                         BILL

           Sent Lauren what?

                         JUDY

           Oh, nothing. Linda and I have been

           sending notes to Lauren with the cell

           phone. You know, just communicating

           with my daughter through the new

           technology.

                         BILL

           Cool.

                         JUDY

           How's it going with you and Brian?

                         BILL

           Great. We're skateboarding on the net

           like you wouldn't believe, right Brian?

                         BRIAN

           It's surfing, Dad.

BILL GRABS A BEER FROM THE FRIDGE.

                         BILL

           He's teaching me all the lingo. Want a

           beer, Bri?
 
                         BRIAN

           (TERRIFIED) No!

                         JUDY

           What are you guys looking at?

                         BRIAN

           Nothing!

                         BILL

           Just... guy stuff. Come on, Brian. Let

           you mom and Linda have fun with the

           cell phone.

BILL ROLLS HIS EYES.

                         JUDY

           (STRAINED) It's a blast!

BILL AND BRIAN EXIT. JUDY LETS OUT A SIGH.

                         JUDY

           Aw, man. Bill's having a great time

           with Brian, and Lauren probably won't

           speak to me again.

LINDA PUTS HER HAND ON JUDY'S SHOULDER.

                         LINDA

           Maybe you should start working on Tina.

                         JUDY

           Yeah, maybe I'll just buy her some

           Hustlers.
 


                             ACT TWO


INT. BRIAN'S BEDROOM - DAY

BILL IS HAPPILY CLICKING THROUGH PORN ON THE COMPUTER.

                         BILL

           What do you think of her? I could see

           your mother in that outfit.

                         BRIAN

           These are scars that will never heal, Dad.

                         BILL

           This is the greatest thing ever, Brian.

           Sports, news, naked women. I may never

           leave this chair.

                         BRIAN

           I've always wondered what hell would be

           like.

                         BILL

           This mouse is like a remote control...

           only, like, a thousand times greater.

                         BRIAN

           You know, you can do practical stuff

           online, too, Dad.

                         BILL

           Are you trying to kill my buzz?

                         BRIAN

           No, it makes life easier. Like paying

           bills.
 
                         BILL

           Paying bills? That's boring. That's

           like going to Las Vegas to look at the

           sand.

                         BRIAN

           Okay, fine. You can gamble, too.

                         BILL

           Gambling is rigged, son. You can't beat

           the casino.

                         BRIAN

           I don't know, Dad. I was reading an

           article about how playing poker is all

           about probabilities. If you can keep

           track of what cards are on the table

           and remember a few formulas, you

           actually have a better chance than the

           other players.

BILL SPRINGS UP AND HUSTLES BRIAN TO THE COMPUTER.

                         BILL

           Show me.

BRIAN CLICKS AROUND. FINDS A GAMBLING WEBSITE.

                         BRIAN

           I'm not saying I can do it, Dad.

HE TURNS TO BILL.

                         BRIAN

           Or that I should. You know, as a minor.
 
Still Standing - "Still Connected"     By: Heath G. Miller   26.


                         BILL

           Brian. This is a chance for your world

           and my world to come together in a

           beautiful harmony. Let's gamble.

                         BRIAN

           We're going to need some money. They're

           asking for a bank account number.

BILL PULLS A CHECKBOOK FROM HIS POCKET.

                         BILL

           Not a problem.

                         BRIAN

           I thought mom wouldn't let you touch

           the money.

                         BILL

           Son, there are a lot of things your

           mother says I can't touch.

                         BRIAN

           And the last innocent image of my

           mother has vanished.

HE PUNCHES A FEW NUMBERS.

                         BRIAN

           Okay, we're in.

BILL STANDS BACK. WIPES A TEAR FROM HIS EYE.

                         BRIAN

           Dad, are you crying?
 
                         BILL

           It's just... the dirty pictures, the

           gambling... I've never felt so close to

           you.
 

INT. KITCHEN - DAY

JUDY AND LINDA SIT AT THE TABLE. LAUREN ENTERS.

                         JUDY

           Hi, Honey. How was school today?

LAUREN STARES BULLETS.

                         LINDA

           See anything interesting?

THE BULLETS HIT LINDA.

                         JUDY

           Baby, I know must be so mad at me. You

           have to believe that it was an accident.

                         LAUREN

           You just accidentally sent me porn on

           my cell phone?

                         LINDA

           Porn is such a strong word. Didn't you

           think the photo was a little artistic?

                         LAUREN

           It was porn. Worse, it was old people

           porn. Do you know how gross that was?

                         LINDA

           (NERVOUS) How gross was it?

                         LAUREN

           All of the boys wanted to print it out

           and take it home.
 
                         LINDA

           (PERKING UP) Really?

                         JUDY

           Okay, Miss December. Get out of here.

JUDY SHOVES LINDA OUT THE DOOR.

                         JUDY

           Lauren. I'm so sorry. Is there anything

           I can do to make it up to you?

                         LAUREN

           You can start by getting my phone back.

           Principal Baxter thinks I'm some kind

           of smut peddler and took it away from me.

                         JUDY

           Oh, that woman is evil.

                         LAUREN

           You'd better talk to her.

                         JUDY

           I don't know, honey. They've been

           pretty mad at us since your father

           called in that bomb threat to get out

           of Brian's science fair.

                         LAUREN

           Fine. If you won't do it, then I'll ask

           daddy to talk to them.

                         JUDY

           No! That's okay. You're father doesn't

           really need to know about this. We'll

           just keep it a secret between us girls.
 
                         LAUREN

           And half the boys in my grade.

                         JUDY

           Yeah, them too. I'll fix this. I promise.

                         LAUREN

           Okay, Mom.

LAUREN EXITS. JUDY TALKS TO HERSELF.

                         JUDY

           If only I had some naked pictures of

           Principal Baxter I could use against her.

SHE THINKS ABOUT IT. SHUDDERS.
 


INT. LIVING ROOM - DAY

BILL RUNS DOWN THE STAIRS. BRIAN FOLLOWS.

                         BRIAN

           I don't know what happened. He should

           have had two twos.

                         BILL

           Well, he had three aces.

                         BRIAN

           I must have lost track during one of

           the raises.

BILL FRANTICALLY TURNS OVER CUSHIONS ON THE COUCH.

                         BILL

           Must have. Where is the phone?

                         BRIAN

           We have to tell Mom.

                         BILL

           You want to tell your mother you just

           lost my last two paychecks while

           gambling online?

                         BRIAN

           Well...

                         BILL

           The answer is 'no' Brian.
 
                         BRIAN

           But, won't she just blame you for the

           gambling part?

                         BILL

           She won't blame me for the nudie picks

           on your computer.

                         BRIAN

           You wouldn't.

                         BILL

           Just watch me.

THEY STARE DOWN FOR A MOMENT.

JUDY ENTERS.

                         BILL

           So, yeah, the quadratic formula is

           quite simple. I don't remember all of

           the nuances, but you know... algebra is

           more art than science anyway. Oh, hey,

           honey!

                         JUDY

           Hey, Bill. You guys still having fun?

                         BRIAN

           (FORCES SMILE) More than I ever imagined.

                         JUDY

           Great. Lauren and I are going to go out

           and have some fun, too.

LAUREN ENTERS. HER FACE IS THAT OF PURE DISGUST. SHE WALKS OUT
THE DOOR AS JUDY OPENS IT.
 
                         JUDY

           We're having a blast.

JUDY EXITS.

BILL FINDS THE PHONE.

                         BILL

           Okay, I just need to call the bank and

           put a hold on the account.

THE PHONE RINGS IN BILL'S HAND.

                         BILL

           (INTO PHONE) Hello? Oh, hi, I was just

           about to call you guys. Yeah, one of

           the kids got a hold of our bank card

           and did something crazy on the computer.

                         BRIAN

           He should have had twos.

                         BILL

           (INTO PHONE) Uh huh.... yeah... The

           mortgage? Automatic payment?... right...

           That sounds bad. How do I fix it?...

           Got it. Thanks.

BILL HANGS UP THE PHONE.

                         BILL

           Good news: we might be moving.

                         BRIAN

           You know, Dad. If we take out a cash

           advance on the credit card, I bet I can

           double our money in no time.
 
                         BILL

           Take it easy, Tex. I just need to fill

           out some paperwork. I'm going to go to

           the bank now. Try not to get any of our

           cars repossessed, okay.
 


INT. HIGH SCHOOL - PRINCIPAL'S OFFICE - DAY

JUDY TAKES A SEAT. STARES AT AN ICY GLARE FROM PRINCIPAL BAXTER.

                         PRINCIPAL

           Welcome back, Mrs. Miller.

                         JUDY

           (NERVOUS) Hi.  (FIDGETING) You cut

           your hair.

                         PRINCIPAL

           You like it?

                         JUDY

           Looks nice.

                         PRINCIPAL

           I'm not sure if you know why I called

           you in here today.

                         JUDY

           Oh, I might have an idea.

                         PRINCIPAL

           Look, I know we've had our disagreements

           in the past, but I think we all just

           want to do what's best for Lauren.

                         JUDY

           Look, the phone was a gift. I'm sure

           Lauren was just excited and wanted to

           show off to everybody.
 
                         PRINCIPAL

           Judy, this is what we like to call a

           cry for help.

                         JUDY

           It's just a phone. According to TIME,

           they're becoming quite popular.

                         PRINCIPAL

           Not the phone, Judy. I think--

THE PRINCIPAL LOOKS AROUND AND LOWERS HER VOICE.

                         PRINCIPAL

           We think Lauren may be involved with

           somebody in the adult film industry.

JUDY LAUGHS.

                         PRINCIPAL

           This is serious.

                         JUDY

           Yes. Yes, of course. You think that

           picture was of my daughter?

                         PRINCIPAL

           These things can happen even under the

           best circumstances. A kid wants

           attention. They meet the wrong person.

JUDY STIFLES HER LAUGHTER.

                         JUDY

           Maybe she's on drugs.

                         PRINCIPAL

           Lord, I hope not. Such a sweet girl.
 
                         JUDY

           Umm, Mrs. Baxter. I have a confession

           to make.

                         PRINCIPAL

           Oh no. You're in the business, too,

           aren't you?

                         JUDY

           (GASPS) No!  (THINKS ABOUT IT) But, I

           could be. -- Anyway, what I meant to

           say is that I accidentally sent a

           picture of my sister to Lauren. That's

           what she was caught with.

                         PRINCIPAL

           Why do you have naked pictures of your

           sister?

                         JUDY

           (SERIOUS) You know, that's a personal

           family matter and I'm not sure I'm

           comfortable discussing it here. Can I

           have the phone back?

THE PRINCIPAL IS THOROUGHLY BEWILDERED.

                         PRINCIPAL

           Take it.
 


INT. LIVING ROOM - DAY

BRIAN SITS ON THE COUCH, PLAYING A CARD GAME WITH HIMSELF. HE
FLIPS OVER A FEW CARDS.

                         BRIAN

           Dammit!

BILL ENTERS.

                         BRIAN

           Dad. How did it go?

                         BILL

           Not as well as I'd hoped. They can stop

           the payment to the casino, but I need

           your mother's signature on this form

           because it's a joint account.

                         BRIAN

           And, they wouldn't fall for your

           forgery of Mom's signature?

                         BILL

           It's these damn hands. They've been

           writing "Bill" for so long that trying

           to do anything else just comes out

           silly. They also caught me paying the

           Security Guard to give it a try.

                         BRIAN

           You bribed a security guard?

                         BILL

           I was paying her for services rendered.
 
                         BRIAN

           So, does this mean you're going to tell

           Mom that we lost the house payment

           gambling?

                         BILL

           What's this "we" business? I'm not the

           one who doubled down on a pair of jacks.

                         BRIAN

           Dad, you can't tell her about the

           pictures. She'll want to put me in

           therapy or something.

                         BILL

           Don't worry, I have one more idea.

HE HANDS BRIAN THE FORM.

                         BILL

           Sign this.

                         BRIAN

           Me? I'm not going to forge Mom's

           signature. They'd still know it was a

           fake.

                         BILL

           Brian, there's not easy way to tell you

           this: you write like a girl.

                         BRIAN

           I do not!

BILL POINTS TO A BACK WALL.
 
                         BILL

           Do you see those awards for penmanship?

           Do you need me to tell you how many you

           have?

                         BRIAN

           There is nothing wrong with having

           legible hand-writing.

                         BILL

           Will you sign it?

                         BRIAN

           (GRUDGINGLY) Let me go practice.
 


INT. KITCHEN - DAY

JUDY AND LAUREN ENTER.

                         JUDY

           Look on the bright side. Now you've got

           a crazy aunt you can make fun of in

           school.

                         LAUREN

           I guess that's better than everybody

           making fun of you and dad.

                         JUDY

           Um... yeah.

                         LAUREN

           Thanks for getting my phone back, Mom.

                         JUDY

           You're welcome. I'll let you have it in

           a week.

                         LAUREN

           What?!

                         JUDY

           I told you not to use the phone in

           class. If you'd waited until after

           school, this never would have happened.

                         LAUREN

           That is so not cool.
 
                         JUDY

           You want to see pictures I have of your

           dad?

                         LAUREN

           A week sounds good. Thanks, Mom.

LAUREN EXITS.

                         JUDY

           I am so cool.

JUDY WALKS INTO THE LIVING ROOM.



INT. LIVING ROOM - CONTINUOUS

BRIAN PRACTICES SIGNATURES ON A PIECE OF PAPER.

                         JUDY

           Whatcha doin' Brian?

                         BRIAN

           (STARTLED) Nothing.

                         JUDY

           Are you practicing your handwriting again?

                         BRIAN

           You can never be too neat.

                         JUDY

           Uh huh. Look, Brian. I need to talk to

           you about something you may hear about

           at school tomorrow. It's about... adult

           materials.
 
                         BRIAN

           What! Dad told you? Wait, he told the

           school?

JUDY REALIZES THERE IS A STORY IN HERE SOMEWHERE.

                         JUDY

           Not the school. He just told me.

                         BRIAN

           Mom, it's not a big deal, really. I

           just have a few dirty pictures on my

           computer. It's perfectly natural for a

           boy my age to be curious.

                         JUDY

           You have naked pictures on your computer?

                         BRIAN

           Yes. You said Dad told you.

                         JUDY

           Of course he did. Naked pictures... of

           women?

                         BRIAN

           Yeah.

JUDY MOVES OVER AND PUTS BRIAN INTO A BIG HUG, JUST LIKE BILL
EARLIER.

                         JUDY

           My little boy is growing up. I'm so happy.

                         BRIAN

           Wait. Dad didn't tell you?
 
                         JUDY

           No. But I know now. What secret are you

           keeping for him?

                         BRIAN

           I can't tell you. Dad kept his word.

                         JUDY

           I have naked pictures of your Aunt Linda.

                         BRIAN

           He made me gamble online and we lost

           all of the mortgage money on a bet. You

           see, I thought the guy had twos, but he

           actually had three Aces. I've been

           doing some linear regressions and I

           think what happened is I miscalculated

           the probability of there being a full

           hou--

                         JUDY

           Your dad lost the mortgage payment?

                         BRIAN

           Well, technically, I lost it. But, I

           think it would be better if you got mad

           at him.

                         JUDY

           Why don't I get mad at the both of you?

           This is terrible.
 
                         BRIAN

           Oh, Dad has a form from the bank to fix

           it, but he needs your signature.

BRIAN SHOWS HER HIS PAPER.

                         BRIAN

           I've been practicing.

                         JUDY

           You were going to forge my signature?

                         BRIAN

           Well, Dad says I write like a girl.

                         JUDY

           Yeah, you kind of do.

                         BRIAN

           Thanks, Mom.

BILL COMES DOWN THE STAIRS.

                         BILL

           Okay, Rain Man, let's see those

           signatures. I want to get this finished

           before your mother gets ho...

HE SEES JUDY.

                         BRIAN

           I think I'll go to my room.

BRIAN EXITS.

                         BILL

           Hey, honey. How's it going with Lauren?
 
                         JUDY

           Well, I've managed to keep her off the

           streets for another day. What about you

           and Brian?

                         BILL

           You know, it's not as easy as it looks.

                         JUDY

           I hear we might lose our house.

                         BILL

           Now, be fair. I told him to wager with

           his college fund. He just got the

           accounts confused.

                         JUDY

           Bill!

                         BILL

           You're right. I'm sorry. I was actually

           having fun hanging out with Brian, and

           I guess we got carried away. I've

           already talked to the bank. We just

           have to fill out this paperwork and

           it'll be okay.

HE HANDS HER THE PAPER.

                         JUDY

           What's this say?

                         BILL

           That our check card was stolen at the

           mall.
 
JUDY READS.

                         JUDY

           By a group of teenagers with bad haircuts?

                         BILL

           And terrible hygiene.

JUDY SIGHS.

                         JUDY

           Okay. That works for me.
 
Still Standing - "Still Connected"     By: Heath G. Miller   48.



                               TAG


INT. BRIAN'S BEDROOM - NIGHT

BILL AND JUDY SIT AT THE COMPUTER.

                         BILL

           What do you think of that one?

                         JUDY

           Wow. We haven't tried that since we had

           Lauren.

                         BILL

           Yeah, the second kid really took away

           some of your flexibility.

                         JUDY

           Well, we can try to work our way back

           into playing shape.

SHE GIVES BILL A KISS. THEY MAKE A FEW "FRISKY" NOISES AS BILL
CLICKS THROUGH MORE PICTURES.

BRIAN SITS UP IN HIS BED.

                         BRIAN

           You guys! I'm trying to sleep.

                                                  FADE OUT.

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