Three Men In a Bar

Philosophy shouldn't look so good on rum-soaked coasters.

Three Men in A Bar

Three men are seated on barstools in a run down old bar. Barbara, the regular barmaid, sits on the other side of the counter, occasionally filling up the men's glasses and her own. The three men- Sam, a man of few, powerful words, Tim, the dreamer and Max, a man of questionable introspection are engaged in another one of their philosophical conversations, fuelled by alcohol and that nagging feeling that there exists something bigger out there, waiting to be discovered.

Sam: I've got a theory.
Tim: Of relativity? [Laughs]
Max: Keep your day job, Tim. [Downs a glass]
S: [Unfalteringly] Keep going till you run into headlights.
M: That's not a theory, Sam.
Barbara: What is it, then?
M: It's a quote.
Ba: Who's?
M: His, of course.
Ba: He's quoting himself?
M: Well, I'm not doing it for him.
T: Bit sadistic, innit?
M: Quoting yourself?
T: No, the quote.
Ba: What was it, again?
S: [staring at his glass] Keep going till you run into headlights.
M: What if I'm not on the road?
Ba: Everyone's on the road, Max. You're either going someplace or getting away from it.
M: What about stopping midway?
Ba: You don't stop on this road. Stopping on this road is like falling asleep on the wheel. You either drive off a cliff or crash and burn.
T: What about tunnels?
M: What about them? You go in, you come out. Just keep driving.
T: But you can't see a thing. What about turns and all that?
Ba: Headlights.
T: In non-metaphoric terms?

[Silence]

S: Vanity.

[More silence. Clinking of glass.]

M: From?
S: Childhood.
T: [Nodding] You're only as strong as your Grandmother's compliments.
Ba: Not if you never liked her cookies.

[Silence]

M: What?
Ba: Not when you... never liked her or cared for what she said.
M: Why didn't you just say that?
Ba: Sugar coating is an appreciated art form in some countries.
T: You mean songs.
Ba: Not countries?
T: The government doesn't sugar coat, darling. That requires extra labour.
M: Things are much simpler on TV.
Ba: I'm a barmaid, not an actor.

[Silence]

M: Do you like alcohol?
Ba: Cause and solution to life's problems.
M: But do you like it?
Ba: ... Why?
M: Happy is the man who makes his hobby his profession. That's all.
Ba: I look happy to you?
M: Yes. Aren't you?
Ba: Not really.
M: Ah. But you're not an actor.

[Sudden silence]

Ba: What are you saying?
M: You just lied about something you never knew the truth about.
Ba: I don't know the truth about myself...
T: Who does?
Ba: About me?
T: Honey, you don't know yourself. How can anyone else?

[Silence]

Ba: Now what?
M: Nothing.
Ba: Not a thing?
M: Nope.
Ba: So I'll never know myself?
M: [Shakes his head] Just another rhetorical question.
T: You know, they say you find yourself only when you lose yourself.
Ba: And when's that?
T: I'm guessing a few minutes before you die. ‘Cause I certainly don't expect to find myself, lost in the wilderness of Western Europe.
M: London?
T: What?
M: London, that's Western Europe.
T: Huh? Uh, yes. London.
M: There's no wilderness in London. It's all cobblestones and tea.
T: One man's wilderness is another man's home.
M: Tim, you don't live in the jungles of Africa. Your wilderness is my wilderness. And London does not qualify as 'wilderness'. Besides, how would you lose yourself there? They all speak English.
Ba: I hate when you get like this.
M: Like what?
Ba: You're all sarcasm and philosophy. It's intolerable.
T: You just don't mix some things.
Ba: Similar ends of magnets, for one.
T: Great men are never sarcastic.
Ba: [Sarcastically] To be or not to be.
T: [sniggers, and suddenly hits his arm] Damn these mosquitoes. Why don't you do something about 'em, Barb?
Ba: With this manager around? I can hardly get him to keep the water supply going to wash more than five glasses a night.
T: What do we do, Barb?
Ba: With Mr. Stevens?
T: No, with us, with our lives, with all this repetition. I can't do this till I'm 65, Barbara.
Ba: What else you gonna do, huh? Catch the first flight to London? Abandon your wife, your kid? Start some pub next to Big Ben? It don't work that way, Tim. We're the middle class. We're the worker bees of this hive.
T: Every bee for himself, then. The Great Bee Revolution. Why do we need to be what everyone else wants us to be?
M: Well if you look at it that way, then no one ends up getting any honey and I don’t know about you, but I rather enjoy my honey.
T: I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I can’t argue with you there.
Ba: And I’m queen bee of this hive, so don’t think you boys can run off without paying for these drinks.
T: All hail the queen.
M: [slowly] Buzz. Buzz. Buzz.

[Silence]

Ba: So what's the moral of this story?
S: Johnny, keep walking.

[Laughter]

The End

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