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African American Funny People of Color

INT. CHAPEL FOYER — NOONDAY

BRANDY peaks her head into the chapel. People are checking their watches. Looking around. Whispering. GRANNY turns around from the front pew and makes eye contact.

BRANDY

Alright then.

Brandy walks down the aisle. Her black dress just as typical as the other black attire around her. It’s her BOOBS, purple ombré MERMAID WIG, and RED STILETTOS that are the main attractions.

She gets to the podium and looks out at the crowd.

INT. CHAPEL — SAME DAY

BRANDY

Hello, everybody. Well, {giggle}, this is awkward. 

She motions to the empty space to her left.

Beat.

BRANDY(cont’d)

This reminds me of that one time in 1991, I was in 

first grade, and she was supposed to meet

us at a field trip to this print museum in

Carson. As I got out of the school van

to go back to class, she gets out of the car

and says, “I was following you

guys. That was a quick field trip.”

People in the crowd chuckle. Look at their watches. At one another. 

BRANDY

Granny, remember when we planned that spa

day?

GRANNY

I do.

BRANDY

She said we should go ahead, she’d meet us there

 because she had to make a couple of stops. Well, we 

had a great spa day!

GRANNY 

We did!

Two beats

From the audience DOMI notices Brandy´s nervous.

DOMI

Brandy, what about that time we met her for

lunch during her work day.

BRANDY                  EBBY  

Oh yeah.               Oh yeah.

BRANDY

Ok guys, so we drove all the way in to Torrance 

from Ontario. That’s like an hour and a 

half driving time. 

DOMI

And we were running late. Very late.

BRANDY

And we were late. When we arrived. She wasn’t

there. We had to wait another 45 minutes

before shearrived and she worked down the street!

EBBY

If I remember she stopped at World Market.

DOMI

Yeah she did. I wanted to go to World Market, 

but we were waiting for her at the Chinese restaurant. 

And there she was perusing the aisles without a care in the world.

BRANDY

Stores distract her. If there is…

The crowd starts calling out.

EBBY

A Michael’s 

BRENDA

A Kohl’s

JOYCE

Marshall’s 

JOCARMEL

Sam’s

DOUG

Or Costco

There are groans from the audience.

GRANNY

Oh, Lord, don’t let there be a Costco

or Sam’s. 

Granny turns to face everyone.

GRANNY(cont’d)

If there’s a Costco or Sam’s, you’ve lost her. 

Now, if there’s a Costco and a Sam’s nearby each other, 

you’ve lost her for the day! It’s over.

She throws her hands up.

ERIC

A grocery store.

GRANNY

Even a grocery store. A .99 cent 

only store. Dollar Tree.

BIG BILLY stands up and walks to the podium.

BIG BILLY

Granddaughter, may I?

BRANDY

Please.

She steps aside.

BIG BILLY

Don’t go anywhere. I won’t be long.

DOUG

Riiiiiiight.

Granny glares at DOUG.

Big Billy holds Brandy’s hand. Brandy relaxes. A bit.

BIG BILLY 

She’d say, Dad, I am going to stop over after 

work and check on you today. Want me to pick you 

up anything? I’d say, No, daughter, that’s okay. 

I’ll just be glad to see you. 

A day, two days, then three days would pass, 

and then there she’d be knocking on my door. I told you I 

was stopping over after work.

Everyone laughs. The atmosphere has lighten up.

ERIC gets out of his seat and walks up. Pats Big Billy on the shoulder.

ERIC

Patrice, remember she was 35 minutes late to 

our wedding. And she was the maid of honor! 

PATRICE shakes her head remembering.

ERIC(cont’d)

But that’s my sister.

CARLA stands up.

CARLA

I’m not going up front.

She motions to her seat mates not to move.

CARLA 

If you plan for my cousin to be anywhere on time, 

you have to tell her it’s an hour or two earlier 

than the real time. Hopefully she’ll make it. 

But I don’t invite her to movies anymore or schedule

 her to do my hair. I just never know when she’ll actually

 arrive! But I love my cousin.

Nods from the crowd. Tears. 

One by one people stand and tell stories:

BOSS

It would be shocking if she ever makes it in 

before 9:30. But once in the office, she works

 diligently. Definitely one to make up for lost time. 

EBBY

She is late to everything but she always picks us up from the airport on time, which is nice. No one wants to wait around after traveling cross the country. That would be annoying and rude.

She eyes others in the audience clearly making a point.

BRENDA

I was like, Marilyn, I can’t be late. 

Are you sure you want to pick me up? I can get a ride. 

Brenda, no, it’ll be fine. I know what time 

they’re expecting you. I said I’ll be there, so I’ll be there!

Beat.

I am so glad I put my brother on standby. 

This heffa called me thirty minutes before I 

was supposed to be there: Brenda, I’m on my way.

 I just made a quick stop at the store. I’ll be a few 

minutes late but I’ll be there. I got in my brother’s car and told her 

not to worry about it, meet me at the place. 

Brenda heads back to her seat.

Brandy turns around to see if anyone else wants a turn. No one budges. She reluctantly gets up and makes her way back to the podium.

BRANDY

Ok.

BEAT.

Well, if no one else has anything to say. 

Thank you, guys, for coming to celebrate my 

mama’s life. How ironic that…

INT. CHAPEL FOYER— AFTERNOON

Foyer doors fly open. The ATTENDANT runs in.

ATTENDANT 

My apologies. I am terribly sorry. This is completely. 

Oh my, I.  There was a fatal accident on the 405. We were

sitting in traffic.

He takes a deep breath as he hold his arms over his head. 

Meanwhile two other ATTENDANTS walk in carrying an ivory CASKET.

BRANDY

I am sure a gajillion times in my mom’s life 

someone told her she’d be late to her own funeral. 

Well, we have come to that moment and in true Marilyn fashion.

She shrugs.

ATTENDANT

You know what they say: Better late than never.

Everyone gives him a look.

December 21, 2021 01:23

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