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Friday, September 23, 2005   |    Fiction

The Trials and Tribluation of Doug Clifton, Ghost Whisperer

by Christopher Monks.

The Setting: A movie theater, at a screening of The Man starring Samuel L. Jackson and Eugene Levy

Teen Ghost #1: Oh snap! Dude just peed in the pool!

Teen Ghost #2: This movie is hilarious, bro!

Doug Clifton, Ghost Whisperer [whispering]: Shhhhhhhh!

Teen Ghost #1: Someone did not just shh us.

Teen Ghost #2: It was that guy over there.

Doug [whispering]: Be quiet! I’m trying to watch the movie.

Arlene, the Ghost Whisperer’s Wife: Honey, who are you talking to?

Doug: Those noisy ghosts two rows back.

Arlene: For the love of god, Doug! Can’t we enjoy a movie without you making up another crazy ghost story?

Doug: I’m not making it up. There are two teenage ghosts a couple rows behind us. They’re being very rude.

Teen Ghost #1: Excuse me, dude who can see and hear us? Would you please shut up? We’re, like, trying to watch the movie.

Teen Ghost #2: Hooo! Good one! Low five! [Gives Teen Ghost #2 a low five.]

* * *

The Setting: A public library, in the main reading room.

Teen Ghost #1: They got Penthouse in here or what?

Teen Ghost #2: I don’t think so.

Teen Ghost #1: Well, they got National Geographic then?

Teen Ghost #2: Probably.

Doug [whispering]: Shhhhhhhh! I’m trying to read my book.

Teen Ghost #1: Oh no he didn’t.

Teen Ghost #2: That dude is so uptight.

Teen Ghost #1 [to Doug]: So read your damn book then.

Doug [whispering]: You guys are being very inconsiderate.

Librarian: Is there a problem, sir?

Doug: Those two ghosts are being very loud.

Librarian: Ghosts?

Doug: Yeah. Over there by the magazine rack. They’re teenagers.

Librarian: Are you O.K., sir?

Doug: Yes, I’m fine.

Librarian: Are you sure?

Doug: Yes. Thanks. I’m fine. Just forget it.

Teen Ghost #1: Shhhhhhh! I’m trying to read my magazines!

Teen Ghost #2: Damn straight! Low five! [Gives Teen Ghost #1 a low five]

* * *

The Setting: A funeral home, at the memorial service for Doug’s late wife, Arlene, who died in a carnival-ride accident.

Teen Ghost #1: Funerals are depressing!

Teen Ghost #2: This isn’t a funeral. It’s a memorial service.

Teen Ghost #1: What’s the difference?

Teen Ghost #2: I’m not sure.

Teen Ghost #1: Funeral, memorial service, whatever it is, it’s depressing. [His cell phone rings.] Hello? … Yo, dawg! Whassup?

Doug [whispering]: Shhhhhhhh!

Teen Ghost #2: Here we go again.

Doug [whispering]: Be quiet! I’m trying to listen to the eulogy for my late wife!

Teen Ghost #1: So listen to the damn eulogy then! Shoot, why you always gotta be shh-ing me? Can’t you see I’m on the phone?

Doug [whispering]: Please, have some respect! I’m saying goodbye to my wife!

Ghost of Arlene: Honey, who you are talking to?

Doug [whispering]: Those two noisy ghosts again.

Ghost of Arlene: For the love of God, Doug! Can’t we get through my memorial service without you making up yet another crazy ghost story?

Doug [whispering]: I’m not making it up! There are two teenage ghosts standing right there in the aisle.

Ghost of Arlene: Whatever. [Winks at Teen Ghosts.]

Doug [whispering]: Heck, you’re a ghost and I can see and hear you!

Ghost of Arlene: Honestly, Doug. I think you need help.

Teen Ghost #1 [Hangs up cellphone.]: You tell him, Arlene. You need help, Doug!

Doug: But, Arlene—

Teen Ghost #1: Come on, Arlene, we’re out. Let’s go see a movie.

Ghost of Arlene: O.K.

Doug [whispering]: Wait. You’re friends with them?

Ghost of Arlene: Yeah, they make me feel young again.

Doug [whispering]: You’re going to a movie with them in the middle of your funeral?

Ghost of Arlene: It’s a memorial service, not a funeral. And, yeah, memorial services are depressing. I’d rather do something fun.

Teen Ghost #1: What movie you wanna see, girl?

Ghost of Arlene: I hear The Constant Gardener is supposed to be good.

Doug [whispering]: Arlene!

Teen Ghost #1: All right, let’s do this then.

Teen Ghost #2: Yeah, I’m stoked. Rachel Weisz is a fox.

Ghost of Arlene: Ralph Fiennes ain’t so bad himself!

Teen Ghost #1: Oh snap! Arlene wants to get with Ralph Fiennes!

Teen Ghost #2: Yeah, Arlene! Low five! [Gives Ghost of Arlene a low five.]

Christopher Monks works hard for the money. So hard for it, honey. So hard for the money so you better treat him right…What’s a matter? You don’t believe he works that hard? Well, who are you to judge? Are you Judgey McJudge or something? Wait, are you? No, really; tell me. I want to know. I’ve heard about Judgey McJudge and from all reports I understand it’s best not to cross him. So in the chance that you are Judgey McJudge, I apologize and please don’t eat my cat. If you’d like to see how Christopher Monks works hard for the money, visit his Web site Utter Wonder.