6: Achievement in Music and Throbbing Goat Love

...Wait. Strike that Last One.

REBECCA: But I'm scared! I swear to God, Will, it's like Children of the Corn in here! And the music's really loud! And I think it might be emo, but I'm not sure because I still don't know what emo is! And there aren't any drinks here. You can only get, like, coffee and apple juice. Rich thinks that's cool because Rich doesn't drink because he's extremely boring, but I don't know what the rest of us are supposed to do. Oh! There's TIM! TIM! TIM! Hey, congratulations! You've been selected as the Best Music Club in Orange County!

TIM Hill: Oh. Okay.

REBECCA: So how does it feel?

TIM: Good. Thanks. That's nice.

REBECCA: Any thoughts?

TIM: No, not really. Thanks.

REBECCA: How about the competition?

TIM: They're all really great. Thanks for the award.

REBECCA: You heard it here first, folks. Back to you, Will.

[Fade out. Applause.]

ANNOUNCER: Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome OC Weekly associate music editor Alison M. Rosen.

[Applause]

ALISON: It's my great pleasure to introduce the following presenters to help me present this next award. Ladies and gentlemen, please join me in welcoming Ginger L. Gladness and Stanky Edwards of The Pocket Clowns!

[Crowd goes wild, cheering and stomping their feet. The funky, nutty, groovy, soul-stirring, island emodelic skalypso hard rock strains of the Pocket Clowns' superhit "Thanks for the Rubber Shoes" are heard. Big smoke machines blow smoke onto the stage. Alison begins coughing. Ginger and Stanky walk onstage but no one can see them due to the smoke. Alison is nervous and unable to locate the presenters.]

ALISON: Hello? Hello?

[Ginger steps on Alison's foot.]

ALISON: Ouch!

GINGER: Sorry, sorry! Oh, shit!

[Ginger, unable to see, waves hands in front of her and accidentally slaps ALISON in the face.]

ALISON: Ouch!

GINGER: I can't see shit out here!

STANKY: Dude! Dudes?

[A crash is heard. Shot of audience looking confused and uncomfortable. The curtain abruptly falls. The curtain opens. Alison stands onstage, flanked by Ginger and Stanky. The three of them stand very still and rigid with terse smiles and doe-in-the-headlights expressions. Alison looks as if she's been crying. Also, she has a black eye. She squints to read the Teleprompter and speaks in a monotone.]

ALISON: Well, hello, Ginger. Hello, Stanky. Welcome. You look great.

GINGER AND STANKY: [in unison, dazed and staring at the Teleprompter]: Thank you.

GINGER: Yes, thank you.

STANKY: Yeah, thanks.

GINGER: A lot.

STANKY: Yeah, lots of thanks.

ALISON: Oh, you are for sure welcome. You are. Thank you.

STANKY: You're welcome.

ALISON: Right.

[A voice is heard offstage barking orders to Alison. Alison looks to the left—at the voice heard offstage—and nods.]

ALISON: Okay.

[The Voice continues barking orders.]

ALISON: Right. Okay. Gotcha.

[The voice continues. Alison gets increasingly frustrated.]

ALISON [yelling]: I said, okay, goddammit!

[Alison smiles and looks back toward the audience, embarrassed.]

ALISON: Right, okay, so we have some awards to present.

STANKY: First up is the award for Best Band.

ALISON: This is awarded to a local band who's brightened the musical landscape with their mellifluous tones. A band who's spoken to us in the universal language of music. A band who's given us reason to get up in the morning and go to bed at night, knowing our ears are being looked after and even caressed lovingly.

[Shot of audience looking confused.]

ALISON: Now, if I'm not mistaken, you guys won this award last year, did you not?

GINGER: Yes, we did.

ALISON: And you won it the year before as well?

GINGER: Yes, that's right.

ALISON: And it looks like you won it for three consecutive years before that.

STANKY: Yes.

ALISON: You know I'm curious to know—and I'm sure our audience here and our viewers watching at home are as well—how your life has changed in the past year since winning the award.

GINGER: Well, Alison, I don't even know where to begin, to be honest. There's the endorsements, and the commercials.

STANKY: All the money.

GINGER: Yeah, and the sex, too.

STANKY: Can't argue with the sex.

GINGER: But the thing that really gets me is knowing that you people like me—you really like me!

STANKY: The Pocket Clowns is such a personal thing, and just knowing that people connect with our music, that's the best part.

GINGER: Guess we're not such freaks after all.

STANKY: Yeah.

ALISON: Well, I'll be the judge of that.

[Stanky and Ginger collapse in laughter. The audience collapses in laughter. The crew collapses in laughter. The house band's drummer can barely hit a rimshot because he's laughing so hard. Arrissia and Rebecca collapse in laughter. Swaim wipes a tear from his eye and cracks up again.]

ALISON: And the nominees for best band are . . .

GINGER: Lo-Fi Champion.

[Shot of Lo-Fi Champion sitting in the audience, smiling. Rebacca and Arrissia are sitting with them. Rebecca is sitting in the singer's lap. The bass player's arm is draped around Arrissia. Arrissia points to the screen and whispers something to him. Rebecca looks up at the camera and waves.]

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