Scampi: Whew! Hahh!
Peter: You seem to be out of breath.
Scampi: Not completely.
Scampi: Pretty damn close, though.
Peter: Excuse me? Do you want a coffee of your own?
Scampi: No, no. That sip’ll do me.
Scampi: Remember Mr. Bannister?
Scampi: Bannister comma Mr.
Peter: Was he your childhood etiquette teacher?
Peter: If so, I wouldn’t mind having a word or two with him.
Scampi: Come on.
Scampi: How about, Sir. Roger. (Gilbert.) Bannister. No?
Peter: Dramatic pauses notwithstanding, I have no idea what you’re on about.
Scampi: Way to stay abreast of current events, Peter. He ran the four minute mile, of course.
Peter: Current events? In what year did this happen?
Scampi: Nineteen fifty four.
Peter: I see.
Scampi: You probably don’t even know what year it is right now. Who could blame you?
Peter: Certainly not you.
Scampi: The four-minute-mile, eh? Pretty impressive stuff.
Peter: I suppose there is a body of documentation on this.
Scampi: You suppose!
Peter: I do.
Scampi: Sure there is. Famous.
Peter: Fame is fleeting, we are told.
Scampi: And the fleet are famous.
Scampi: When they are fleet enough.
Peter: Fleetingly famous, anyhow.
Scampi: Flight-footed. What a guy.
Peter: Can I help you today?
Scampi: What do you mean?
Peter: Perhaps you’d rather be chatting with Sir Bannister.
Scampi: This is not be, however.
Peter: I do not sulk.
Scampi: (Peter doth protest too much!)
Peter: I heard that.
Scampi: Sure you did.
Peter: I did.
Scampi: I am sure of it. Moving along, you look a little shaky.
Peter: I do?
Scampi: You do. Are you quite well?
Peter: I am in perfect health. Of course.
Scampi: Of course.
Peter: Perhaps I am slightly.
Scampi: Slightly what?
Peter: In fact, I am in perfect health. I cannot complain.
Scampi: A laughable falsehood.
Peter: What’s this?
Scampi: You cannot complain. You were saying.
Scampi: You seem lonely.
Scampi: Your hair seems lonely.
Peter: What are you suggesting? That I’m falling victim to male pattern baldness?
Scampi: No. Would you like a sucker?
Scampi: Hard candy, you know. On a stick.
Peter: No, no.
Scampi: Hold on. I’ve got, uh, raspberry and butterscotch. Hey?
Peter: I couldn’t possibly.
Scampi: Go on.
PETER SELECTS THE BUTTERSCOTCH.
Scampi: How’s that?
Peter: Mrgh. Hh.
Scampi: They kind of stick to the back of your teeth though.
Scampi: Have you ever read the Bible?
Peter: (choking sounds.)
Scampi: You know, you’re supposed to hold on to the stick part. Not swallow it.
Peter: Yes. I realise.
Scampi: So, have you?
Peter: A few relevant passages.
Scampi: There’s a great deal of adventure in there, isn’t there?
Peter: This depends on what you consider to be adventure.
Scampi: Oh, you know me, Peter.
Scampi: Well, you know. General excitement. Quests, and the like.
Peter: You are fond of a quest.
Scampi: Aren’t you?
Peter: I suppose having a specific goal is pleasant. It certainly can’t hurt.
Scampi: Remember when you said you never go fishing?
Peter: Not exactly, but it’s true enough.
Scampi: True enough? You never go fishing.
Peter: I do not. Correct.
Scampi: That was sort of poignant.
Peter: How so?
Scampi: Maybe you’ve always wanted to. It’s very touching.
Peter: I wouldn’t say that.
Scampi: That’s what makes it so touching. You look a little wobbly on your feet today. Did you know that?
Peter: I believe you are seeing things.
Scampi: I am. I’m observing.
Peter: Things that are not there.
Scampi: Aren’t they?
Scampi: Are the shackles of the quotidian weighing you down?
Peter: Not unduly, no.
Scampi: What is then?
Peter: What is what?
Scampi: (That is a separate question.) What’s weighing you down?
Scampi: So, you’re floating.
Scampi: To put it another way, what are you using for ballast?
Peter: Are you suggesting I’m some kind of hot air balloon?
Scampi: Ha! Possibly. Or a ship.
Peter (pensively): Yes, or a ship.
Scampi: I hope I’m not upsetting you.
Scampi: Presumably that’s what the ballast is for.
Scampi: Whatever it is.
Peter: I just remembered.
Peter: I have several things to do.
Scampi: You and what army?
Peter: Some items on the old to do list.
Scampi: What a to-do!
Peter: I just remembered.
Scampi: That’s a good sign. Normal brain function.
PETER CASTS HIS FOREHEAD INTO HIS HANDS LIKE DOUGH.
Scampi: Did you hear that?
Scampi: Just now. Like, a fighter jet.
Scampi: It flew overhead.
Peter: That was me, moaning.
Scampi: No it wasn’t.
Peter: I didn’t hear it.
Scampi: It was louder than you. It was doing a polka on the sound barrier.
Peter: While my background in physics is not at, say, the doctoral level –
Scampi: So you didn’t hear it?
Peter: I heard nothing.
Scampi: Your head was in your hands.
Scampi: This fighter jet flew overhead. Right over our heads.
Peter: I didn’t see it.
Scampi: I could feel it. You couldn’t feel it?
Scampi: It shook my bones.
PETER RUBS HIS EYES, DELICATELY.
Scampi: Like a jeep ride across the archipelago.
Peter: I have never been on this journey.
Scampi: It’s a bumpy one.
Peter: I am getting that impression.
Scampi: You know why they call them suckers, Peter? Because you’re supposed to suck on them.
PETER PICKS MUTELY AT HIS TEETH.
Scampi: As opposed to, say, crunching them up all at once. I don’t mind though. You do what you must.
Peter: I do.
Scampi: A ship at sea.
Peter (sharply): What about it?
Scampi: About, on a ship, means turning around.
Peter: I was aware of this.
Scampi: You were. Interesting.
Scampi: Have you ever owned a tuxedo?
Peter: No. Why?
Scampi: No reason.
Scampi: Only I can picture you in one, at the top of a spiral stair, right?
Scampi: With your hair sort of on end. Clutching the balustrade.
Peter: This is all very appealing, of course.
Scampi: For dear life.
Scampi: There’s a party going on downstairs.
Peter: There is? Presently?
Scampi: No. In this picture.
Peter: Right. Of Tuxedoland.
Scampi: Everyone’s like, Peter, join the party won’t you? But there you are up top.
Peter: First we’re an aircraft carrier. Now this.
Scampi: Like I said, clutching the balustrade. As if your very life depended on it.
Peter: And what is the purpose of this illustration? If I may be so bold?
Scampi: You may.
Scampi: Can’t you picture it?
Peter: This is some sort of stock photo, is it? From your catalogue.
Scampi: Something like that.
Peter: Well, fine.
Scampi: It comes in black and white, and colour. Either or.
Peter: Very nice.
Scampi: Which of us can run fastest, do you think?
Peter: I confess, I hadn’t thought about it.
Scampi: I suppose if I was running over to see you, it wouldn’t matter, would it?
Peter: This depends. Am I sitting still?
Scampi: You are now.