Title: Office Gossip
Featuring: Lance Warner
Date: 10/23/14
Location: The upstairs office lounge.

[We’re upstairs in the DEFArena’s spacious offices. The hustle and bustle of typical office work can be heard outside the door of the lounge. Sitting at one of the small tables is an older exhausted looking caucasian gentleman wearing a black and red DEFIANCE polo and a nametag emblazoned with the same logo. Apparently his name is Dwayne. He sits silently staring at the steam rising from an old chipped Jimmy Kort coffee cup.]

Dwayne:
Goddamn place is going to kill me, I swear to God…

[A slightly younger looking and decidedly more chipper African-American gentleman, dressed about the same enters the room and starts making his own cup of coffee. The fella’s name tag reads Craig. He hazards a glance over his shoulder at his bemused co-worker.]

Craig:
Why you lookin’ so down in the dumps, D? What’s goin’ on man?

[Dwayne just shakes his head and takes a sip of his coffee.]

Dwayne:
Just don’t know if I got it in me to work at this place no more, kid.

Craig:
Man, you worked for this company for years what’chu talkin’ about?

Dwayne:
Yeah, I worked for years drivin’ a truck… this? Man ‘aint meant to work under florescent lights all day. Goddamn torture.

Craig:
So you wanna’ quit because of these here lights? Seems like a dumb reason to quit a job, man.

[The old man smiles a tired smile.]

Dwayne:
Aint just that, kid. This place, these entertainment people, they aint like you an’ me. See, before? I drove one of the big rigs that hauled the ring and lighting rigs and shit from yow to tow, see? Great job. Open road, new folks to meet, new places to see… lots of time away from the wife, if you know what I mean. Now? Shiii… now we’re all stuffed into this here crazy house like sardines.

[Craig shrugs.]

Craig:
Here ‘aint so bad man, we sittin’ here at three o’clock in the afternoon drinkin’ coffee when other sucka’s are sweatin’ breakin’ they backs man to make a livin’.

Dwyane:
Yeah, but chances are they don’t work for the people we do.

Craig:
Dane?

Dwayne:
God, you really are new here ‘aintcha? How long you been workin’ here?

Craig:
Hired on when they build the buildin’ a few weeks ago, damn you got a bad memory D.

Dwayne:
Yeah, well fuck you I’m old as shit. Dane and Andrews and them boys, they run creative. They’re responsible for the show, the talent, all that shit. You and me? We work for the owner of the buildin’ and he’s… well, nevermind.

Craig:
What? Ed White? Shit man, what’s so scary about him? I read a magazine article at the dentists office one time that talked all about his rich ass. The wrestler who struck it rich… that shit was all over the TV back in the day when he made his nut. They brought back lifestyles of the rich and fuckin’ famous to TV just to do a special on his ass. Can you believe that shit?

[The older man just shakes his head.]

Dwayne:
You ever stop and think about that for a second?

Craig:
[taking a sip of coffee] Whatchu mean?

Dwayne:
Why he bothers with this place at all? He’s a billionaire, kid. That's billionaire with a big fat B. He owns coal mines and power plants, skyscrapers and boats. The man IS the goddamn one percent. Why bother with small potatoes like DEFIANCE? Why put himself at physical risk like he does? Why dump millions out of his own pocket to fund the brainchild of a man he hates more than life itself?

[Craig sits thinking about that for a moment.]

Dwayne:
Lemme tell you somethin’ kid… everybody walks around here and looks at all the pretty fixtures and the nice ring and the cute little restaurant and figures “well shit, Ed White must not be that damn bad”... Ed White’s got hate runnin’ so deep it’s in his bones.

Craig:
What do you mean?

Dwayne:
He has hate for the wrestlin’ business. Resents it something fierce. Inferiority complex I figure… but the reasons why he is the way he is? They don’t matter as much as the means he has with which to do somethin’ about it. All our lives, our jobs, this place, none of it means a hill of beans to a man like Ed White. The fact that man shows up here each week considering the level he’s at? Flies in on his personal jet plane and walks these halls like he’s here tryin’ to make a livin’? Goddamn gives me chills, boy.

Craig:
Shit… I never really gave it much thought. Whatchu think his end game is?

[Dwyane just shakes his head.]

Dwayne:
All I know is I’m glad all I have to do is pass out mail, empty a few trash bins and go home to my fat mean wife. [takes a sip of coffee] Because when the hammer drops around here and whatever evil shit that man has planned for this place goes down? Well, lord help guys like Dusty Griffith, them Big Damn Heroes and Mr. Dane, lemme tell ya.

Craig:
Shit. I heard that.

[End.]



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