PC Pete and the brood of clones, By Kayhan


Capital T trauma surrounds many, that invisible dark indigo blue-black cloud that constantly hangs slightly over your head -- as the beads of thought bubbles, escalated crescendo to painful residual thoughts.  It’s not a pleasant emotion to experience at all. Over the last couple of days, there has been an ongoing dialogue with regards to proper treatment of individuals.  I had prepared an article on abuse, bullies, harassment and plagiarism.  But, I’ve realised those individuals who go out of their way to bully others regardless, if it is via an online platform or in real life they should not be tolerated.  So instead what I’ve decided to do as this is my blog and I literally can do ANYTHING I want here.  I wanted to share with you a sweet dialogue that’s a little electronic based.  However, the emotions of these characters are very real and quite relatable.  I read it years ago and it’s still seared in my mind as though, I had discovered it yesterday.  This piece is called PC Pete and the brood of clones written by my very techy friend Kayhan, who is genuinely OBSESSED with technology and making the world a better place with it. For more information on Kayhan check out his site! 

PC Pete and the brood of clones 

1st draft 12/9/2014 Written by: Kayhan 

This is a story about being different, embracing those
differences, and overcoming the many challenges and obstacles
presented to us on a daily basis. Be different. Be proud.

2.

EXT/INT. OUTSIDE NEIGHBOURHOOD COMPUTER STORE - DUSK

The sun is setting on the now quiet main street. A bunch of
shiny new computers sit in a storefront display, with
screensavers blazing, rainbow colors glowing, and loud sounds
blasting. They all look impressively expensive in their black
and chrome-trimmed cases.

An old, dusty classic beige IBM PC computer sits idly and
quietly in a corner, separate from all the rest. Unlike the
others, it is not powered on. A slanted cardboard sale tag is
taped to the monitor, handwritten in black marker, reads "$50
O.B.O".

The storefront lights suddenly turn off as do all of the
computers. A squeaky front door opens. FOOTSTEPS. The front
door SLAMS shut. KEY TURNS LOCK. FOOTSTEPS fade into the
distance. All is quiet, not a peep can be heard.

Out of nowhere, the old dusty computer turns on with a loud,
distinctive switching sound. A floppy disk drive can be heard
spinning and loading. A loud BEEP. It is PC PETE, a.k.a. PETE
and he is ready to take on the world with nothing but a green
DOS command prompt on his jet black monitor. Without warning,
his arms, legs and neck pop out. He twists his neck from side
to side in a cracking motion. He rips the sale tag off his
monitor face.

PETE
(yawning)
Man, this sedentary lifestyle is
sure cramping up my internals. My
ISA slots are all clogged up.

Pete jumps off the storefront display and onto the floor of
the small computer store. He is a computer on a mission to
find purpose and duty.

INT. COMPUTER STORE - NIGHT

Pete is frantically looking for something. He knocks stuff off
the store displays and throws items everywhere. He picks up a
shrink-wrapped box of software.

PETE
(muttering to himself)
System requirements. Windows 2000,
Me, XP, 7, Vista, 7 and up.
Pentium 4, Intel Core 2 Duo and
up ...
Pete lets out a huge sigh of despair.

3.

PETE
Nobody wants me anymore. I’m
incompatible.
Pete hears something in the distance. It is the familiar Apple
Macintosh boot-up chime. He is clearly not alone. It is MANDY
MACINTOSH, a.k.a. MANDY, a late 1990s Apple iMac computer, and
she seems determined to help out her friend. Mandy runs over
and calls out to him with a distinctive screechy, high pitched
voice.

MANDY
Peter, what exactly are you up to
mister?
Pete ignores her and continues to go about his quest for some
unknown object. He finally acknowledges her presence and turns
to look at her.

PETE
Mandy. Hi. Sorry, I can't breathe
properly since I've been left to
wither and die a slow, miserable
death. I don't suppose you can
reverse your fans and help me
clean out my heat sink and vents?
Mandy seems puzzled by Pete's request.

MANDY
You know better than anyone Pete
that I’m fanless. Forced induction
cooling is one of my defining
features. That, and no floppy
drive.
She places one hand over her heart and looks upwards.

MANDY
It's what makes me so kind and
warm hearted.

PETE
Sorry. I'm not thinking properly.
I haven't updated my CMOS in a
very long time.
(sombre tone)
A very long time.
Pete continues to throw stuff all around.

PETE
Can you help me find a can of
compressed air?

4.

MANDY
What are friends for. We’re the
bestest.

PETE
The bestest. You know, at one
point, our founding fathers hated
one another. We were diametrically
opposed. I had a command prompt,
and you had the fancy graphics and
icons.

MANDY
That's ancient history.

PETE
That was thirty years ago.
(bows head in sadness)
In fact, I’m still just a command
prompt on a screen. I’m nothing
more than a doorstop nowadays. I
would do anything to have a USB
port, and a C drive.

MANDY
That’s silly. You have qualities
that no one else has. In fact,
people were furious with me when I
first came out because I didn’t
have a floppy drive.
Pete finds a can of compressed air. He hands the can over to
Mandy and pushes a button to open one of his his internal
panels.

PETE
Here, give it a nice shot of air.
I’m feeling very congested.
Mandy blasts some compressed air into Pete’s chassis. A cloud
of dust quickly erupts and surrounds both of them. They both
start to cough loudly and profusely.

The sounds of several computers booting up one by one
surrounds the entire store. The sounds are very ominous. Pete
and Mandy look at one another and instinctively know that
something unpleasant is coming their way. Pete’s cursor starts
to blink fast and furious to match his rising heartbeat. He
gulps loudly.

Three computers approach Pete and Mandy in pyramid formation.
It is DALLAS DELL, a.k.a. DALLAS, a big, black gaming desktop
tower with lots of red lights and a big curved widescreen
monitor for a head. He is accompanied by his “brood” of
computer cronies behind him.

5.

DALLAS
(very raspy voice)
Mandy Macintosh. What are you
doing hanging out with this loser?

MANDY
What are you doing hanging out
with those clones?
The other two computers react. Dallas restrains them then
proceeds to put his arm around Mandy.

DALLAS
(almost whispering)
You know, I’ve always wanted to
network with a Mac. Opposites
attract. Whaddya say?
Dallas reaches into a side compartment and grabs an ethernet
cable.

MANDY
I will never network with you …
you big, virus infested bully!

DALLAS
Now that’s a low blow. I’m clean
baby. I have Dr. Norton looking
after my file system. I passed my
last full system scan and I’m
fully defragged.
Pete musters up some courage and decides to intervene in order
to help out his dear friend.

PETE
Leave her alone, you bully.
Dallas approaches Pete and goes face to face. Dallas pokes and
digs his finger into Pete’s chest.

DALLAS
You know, I’ve just about had
enough of you. You just don’t seem
to get it, do ya? Nobody wants
you. You’re old, tired, slow. Just
throw yourself into the recycle
bin already. You’re useless!
Dallas turns to his friends and taps one of them on the chest.

DALLAS
I hear they’re offering 10 cents
per pound for scrap metal at the
yard.

6.

MANDY
You know, speed is not everything.

DALLAS
(yelling)
Speed is everything! Would you
rather drive a Fiat or a Ferrari?
Mandy is getting visibly annoyed and groans out loud.

DALLAS
I can do a trillion, bazillion
calculations per second. I can
render 4K and 3D in a pinch. I am
the epitome of computational
perfection.
Dallas flexes his muscles and displays a grotesque display of
male machismo.

DALLAS
I am invincible! I am forever!
Mandy reaches for Pete’s hand and grabs it, signalling to him
that it’s time to leave.

MANDY
C’mon Pete. Let’s go. I don’t want
to waste another nanosecond on
this filthy clone.

The “brood” starts to chuckle. Dallas turns around and
immediate silence ensues. Pete and Mandy start walking away
from the uncomfortable situation.

DALLAS

You know what I’m saying is true,
Mandy Macintosh.
(yelling from a distance)
History will prove me right.
You’ll see!
Pete and Mandy walk to the front door of the computer store,
open the door and leave. They are now at peace.

EXT. MAIN STREET - NIGHT

Pete and Mandy walk down the main street. All is quiet and
dark as would be expected after business hours on a small city
street. In the distance is a lone storefront with lots of
flashing lights. Curiously, they both start walking
instinctively towards it.

Mandy senses Pete’s uneasiness with the previous altercation.
She tries to break the uncomfortable silence.

7.

MANDY
So, how about them cookies, huh?

PETE
I’m allergic to gluten. It makes
my DOS command prompt go haywire.
And chocolate just clogs up my
heat sink.

MANDY
No, I was referring to those
little tracker files placed in
your web browser
(low voice)
Sorry, I forgot.
Mandy realizes that Pete is confused. Pete sighs.

PETE
Let’s just go check out those
bright lights, ok?
Mandy opens her hands and pumps her arms twice up in the air.

MANDY
w00t. w00t.

PETE
w00t? That doesn’t compute.

MANDY
Sorry. My bad.

PETE
My bad?

MANDY
I’ll just be quiet now.
Pete and Mandy approach the bright well lit storefront. It is
a cyber-cafe. Through the window and inside the cafe are
several humans playing what looks and sounds like MMOGs. On
the storefront window is a taped-up sign that reads “HELP
WANTED. APPLY WITHIN”. In a gentlemanly gesture, Pete opens
the door and allows Mandy to go in first
INT. CYBER-CAFE - NIGHT
Pete and Mandy enter the cyber-cafe. Rows of computers fill
every inch of the little space. Without warning, an ENGLISH
ACCENTED VOICE speaks out of nowhere.

8.

ENGLISH ACCENTED VOICE
May I be of assistance to you?
Pete and Mandy are both startled and caught by surprise.

PETE
Huh? Oh yeah, I noticed the sign
on your window, and I’d like to
apply. My name’s Pete.

ENGLISH ACCENTED VOICE
Well, Mr. Peter. My name is
HEWLETT, and I am delighted to
make your acquaintance.
Hewlett reaches for Pete’s hand and the two shake.

HEWLETT
I regret to inform you however
that the position you speak of is
for humans only I’m afraid.

MANDY
Isn’t that discrimination? What
about his rights?

HEWLETT
Well, he is a computer madame. He
doesn’t have any rights.
Hewlett circles around Pete and examines him closely. He lifts
Pete's arms to see his chassis in more detail.

HEWLETT
You are a remarkable specimen
however. I have never seen a
computational device of your ilk.
What is your lineage?
Just as Pete gets ready to answer the question, Mandy cuts in.

MANDY
Pete just happens to be the very
first x86-based PC ever made. He
is the first of his kind.

HEWLETT
Absolutely fascinating. What did
you say your specifications were
again? Intel Core 2 Duo perhaps?

PETE
(gulps)
No, Intel 8088.

9.

Hewlett computes something on his screen.

HEWLETT
Hmm, I see. Processor speed?
Memory allocation? Storage
capacity?
Pete puts his hand up to his forehead and salutes like an army
private

PETE
4.77 MHz. 256 kB of RAM and dual
floppy drives. Sir.

HEWLETT
At ease private. Dual floppy
drives, did you say?

PETE
Yes, and my RAM is maxed out. I am
top of the line.
Hewlett processes something on his screen.

HEWLETT
Were top of the line, sir.
Hewlett pushes a button on his side and prints out a piece of
paper and shows Pete and Mandy.

HEWLETT
Based on my internal analysis, you
were top of the line 30 years ago,
but as we both know, that is
ancient history in computing I’m
afraid.

PETE
Ancient history.

MANDY
So what is he supposed to do now,
huh?

HEWLETT
Well madame, I know a curator at
one of the leading art galleries.
Mr. Peter is a fine specimen that
can be re-purposed into what we
call recycled art.

MANDY
You want him to be a prop. He is a
computer for crying out loud!

10.

Mandy and Hewlett feverishly continue arguing. Pete quietly
makes his way to the front door, looks back and exits the
store.

EXT. MAIN STREET - NIGHT
Pete starts running down the street as fast as he can. He is
already several blocks away. Gasping for air, he furiously
continues running.
INT. CYBER-CAFE - NIGHT
Mandy and Hewlett both realize what has happened. They stop
arguing and exit the cyber-cafe together.
EXT. MAIN STREET - NIGHT
Mandy and Hewlett see Pete running in the very far distance.
They both try to yell out to him.

MANDY
Pete!

HEWLETT
Mr. Peter!

MANDY
This is all your fault. Here is
what we are going to do. We are
going to find Pete and you are
going to apologize to him. Got
that Hewey?

HEWLETT
It’s Hewlett madame, and yes, I’ll
assist you in your quest to locate
Mr. Peter.

MANDY
Good. Let’s go.
Mandy and Hewlett walk down the middle of the street into the
moonlit horizon in search for Pete.

11.

EXT. DARK ALLEYWAY - NIGHT
Pete walks quietly down a very dimly lit alleyway with his
head held down. A rat crosses his path. Only garbage
containers fill the void of nothingness. He sees a stack of
old computer equipment laying beside one of the garbage
containers. Machines once capable of tackling the most complex
computing tasks now lay unused and unwanted. He lets out a big
sigh of despair. He continues along on his journey with no
destination in mind.

EXT. RECYCLING YARD - NIGHT
Mandy and Hewlett look through a pile of junk.

MANDY
I hope he hasn't done anything
foolish.

HEWLETT
Well madame, machines of his kind
are known to over-react. It's in
his genetics. The Intel 8088
processor is one hot headed ...
Mandy immediately cuts Hewlett off.

MANDY
You're not helping very much.

HEWLETT
Sorry madame. Sometimes my math
co-processor can get a bit ahead
of me. I assure you it won't
happen again. We will locate Mr.
Peter and bring him home safely.
Mandy looks around the sea of junk piles and sees no sign of
Pete anywhere.

MANDY
Let's go Hewey. This was a dead
end.

HEWLETT
It's Hewlett madame. And yes, you
lead the way.

12.

EXT. LOCAL THRIFT STORE - NIGHT
Pete stops in front of a local thrift store. He clearly looks
exhausted from his journey. Unknowingly, he parks himself
underneath a big sign that reads "DONATIONS ACCEPTED HERE"
with a big arrow pointing downwards right over him. His neck
and legs collapse into his chassis. He is surrounded by piles
of donated household items and bags of clothes.

PETE
I just need to rest a bit, and
cool off.
Pete powers himself off. His screen is now pitch black.
EXT. DOWN THE STREET FROM THRIFT STORE - DAWN
Mandy and Hewlett turn a street corner. Mandy spots Pete from
a distance. The front door to the thrift store opens. A set of
human hands reaches down and grabs Pete off of the sidewalk.
Mandy reacts shockingly.

MANDY
Oh no. Pete!
It is too late. Pete is inside the thrift store. Mandy turns
to Hewlett, and bids him a quick and final farewell.

MANDY
Well Hewey. This is where we part
ways. It’s been a slice.

HEWLETT
It’s Hewlett madame, and yes, it’s
been … a slice, as you say.
Hewlett looks on as Mandy furiously runs down the street to
join her friend. As the ultimate sacrificial gesture, she
parks herself just outside of the thrift store exactly where
Pete sat. She collapses her neck and legs. Mandy powers
herself off.

The same set of human hands reaches down to pick Mandy off of
the sidewalk. Mandy is carried into the thrift store.

13.

INT. INSIDE THRIFT STORE - DAWN
Pete and Mandy are reunited. They are both sitting on top of a
sorting cart in a back room of the thrift store. Mandy powers
herself on. The familiar Macintosh boot-up chime resonates
throughout the room. This in turn wakes up Pete, as he also
boots himself up. After a few seconds, both Pete and Mandy are
in a fully booted and powered state.

PETE
Whoa...where am I? Mandy?

MANDY
(whispering)
It’s me Pete. I’m here.

PETE
Why are you whispering? Where are
we?

MANDY
We’re inside of a thrift store.
Pretty soon we’ll go through
processing. If we’re quiet, we can
make a run for it right now.

PETE
How did we get here? The last
thing I remember is walking
around.

MANDY
Dunno. I saw you sitting outside
just a few minutes ago. They took
you in and I followed.

PETE
You sacrificed yourself for me?
Why?

MANDY
What are friends for. We’re the
bestest.

PETE
The bestest.

MANDY
Now, let’s get out of here.
Pete pauses for a moment. He puts his hand up to his face in a
pondering gesture.

14.

PETE
I’m going to stay.
MANDY
What? Why?

PETE
I’ve been thinking. There is
nothing for me back in the shop.
I’ve been sitting there for
years...neglected.
(sombre)
Unwanted

MANDY
Uhmmm.

PETE
At least here, I have a shot. A
shot at finding a good home.
Mandy pauses for a few moments to reflect and gather her
thoughts.

MANDY
Well, if you’re staying, then so
am I.

PETE
I can’t ask you to do that.

MANDY
It’s already done. We’re two peas
in a pod. We go together like
peanut butter and jelly.

PETE
You’re Mac, and I’m an old PC. We
couldn’t be more different.

MANDY
That’s where you’re wrong. Just
because we look different, we have
the same internals. We both have a
processor, RAM, hard dri …
Mandy stops herself immediately upon catching her error.

MANDY
You have dual floppy drives. I
don’t even have one. People hated
me for that. We’re different, yet
similar.

15.

PETE
Well…

MANDY
Besides, I was sitting there for
years too. It’s a shot for the
both of us to get a fresh new
start.
Mandy reaches for Pete’s hand.

MANDY
Together?
Pete reciprocates.

PETE
Together.
The sorting cart suddenly moves out of sight. They are being
sent to processing.

SUPER: “1 month later”

INT. VINTAGE COMPUTER MUSEUM - DAY
Pete and Mandy are prominently displayed next to other
beautiful old vintage computers. They are glowing and both are
impeccably clean. They are basking in their new found glory.
Dozens and dozens of visitors admire them. They have seen the
best of times and the worst of times, and now they both begin
the next chapter of their lives, together. Bestest friends
forever.

SUPER: “5 years later”
INT. SOME COMPUTER STORE - DUSK
A big, black desktop tower computer with no lights and a big
curved widescreen monitor sits idly and quietly in a corner,
separate from all the rest. Unlike the others, it is not on. A
slanted cardboard sale tag hangs handwritten in black marker
reads "$50 O.B.O". It is Dallas Dell.

BLACK  

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