The Fifth Laundromat Hang

November 16, 2010

[CODY opens the door to the laundromat. The first laundromat. Sarah’s laundromat. He sees Sarah at the counter. He slicks back his hair like he’s seen other guys do before talking to a girl. Don’t blow it, he thinks. Don’t try to kiss her or do anything weird. That will only weird her out and you’ve already weirded her out plenty. Behave like a respectable bot for once. He walks over to the counter and says:]

CODY:  Hey there. Don’t worry, I’m not here to hang. I AM NOT HERE TO HANG. I’m here to investigate a robbery.

SARAH: CODY. What did I say the last time you were here?

CODY: That you needed distance.

SARAH: And have you given me distance?

CODY: It’s been a few days.

SARAH: I need more distance. Please leave.

CODY: I’ll give you more distance. After I ask you questions about the robbery I’m investigating. It’s important. I’m doing it for justice. And truth.

SARAH: Why are YOU investigating a robbery?

CODY: Because the robbery took place at Teddy’s laundromat. WHERE I WORK. And the girl whose clothes got robbed asked me to help get her clothes back.

SARAH: Wait. You have a job?

CODY: Yeah whatever, no big whoop.

SARAH: Teddy pays you money? You don’t just hang out all the time?

CODY: He pays me money. We hang out a lot too. But he pays me.

SARAH: Do you have an apartment, or are you still sleeping wherever you hung out earlier in the night?

CODY: I’m still sleeping wherever I hung out earlier in the night. But I might move in with Teddy and his puppies. We’ll see.

SARAH: So what’s this robbery? What are you doing here?

CODY: Someone stole clothes from a dryer at Teddy’s l-mat and I’m investigating it. Pretty cool huh?

SARAH: That is exciting, best of luck. But why are you here?

CODY: Because this is a laundromat.

SARAH: It is A laundromat. One of many in the Dayton area.

CODY: And the robbery also took place at a laundromat. So it makes sense to go to a laundromat. To investigate.

SARAH: Not really. Why would coming here help you solve a robbery that took place at a different laundromat?

CODY: To ask questions and stuff. So. Have you or one of your customers been robbed?

SARAH: Not at the laundromat. Maybe somewhere else. But not here, not that I know of.

CODY: But could you get robbed, you think?

SARAH: Yes, I suppose we could get robbed.

CODY: A robber could come here and rob clothes?

SARAH: Sure.

CODY: A crack in the case.

SARAH: That’s not a crack in the case.

CODY: Draaag. I thought it was.

SARAH: Any other questions?

CODY: Why did the robber steal her clothes, you think?

SARAH: To wear them maybe. Maybe he’s poor and cold. Or maybe he was bored and needed something to do. I don’t know. People do weird things all the time. Case in point: you’re here at my laundromat asking me questions about a robbery that too place at a different laundromat.

CODY: Good answer. You’re so smart. So, if you were a robber, and you robbed laundromats, where would you hide out?

SARAH: I don’t know. Maybe under the railroad tracks with the other bums.

CODY: Under the tracks, of course. You are so smart. You should be solving this robbery, not me. So. Hey. Would you want to team up with me and we could solve it together?

SARAH: I have a life, CODY. I can’t go around solving robberies with a hangbot.

CODY: Aw man. I thought maybe you’d want to be my buddy cop, buddy.

SARAH: I’m not your buddy, CODY. I want to be your buddy, but you make things so hard.

CODY: Naw man, I make things gnarly.

SARAH: You don’t make things gnarly for me.

CODY: So, if the robber comes here and starts robbing, you’ll let me know, right?

SARAH: I’ll probably call the cops first.

CODY: But after that, you’ll let me know?

SARAH: It depends. I don’t think I want you coming here again. I said I needed some distance and for some reason that’s been hard for you to understand. You make me feel uncomfortable.

CODY: I thought I made you feel alive. Like you want to do some hanging.

SARAH: No. You make things very awkward for me. Please stop coming here.

CODY: I didn’t come here to make you feel weird. I came here to help solve a robbery.

SARAH: CODY. It’s so obvious that you came here just to see me. There’s no way that coming here and asking me stupid questions about robbers would help you solve a robbery that happened at a different laundromat.

CODY: Aw, drag. You think so?

SARAH: I know so. Maybe you thought I wouldn’t realize it. Or maybe you knew that I would know that you came here only to see me and you would think it was a cute thing to do. It’s not cute. It’s creepy and you should stop it.

CODY: So you don’t have any more tips about the robbery then?

SARAH: You shouldn’t have come here, CODY. You should have never come here ever. [she's upset now]

CODY: Why are you getting upset? We’re just hanging. And solvin’.

SARAH: I wish I didn’t know you, Cody the robot who hangs out. I wish… I wish you were dead.

CODY: Hangbots don’t die. We might burn out, we might fade away, but we never die.

SARAH: So, what then? Are you going to keep coming here to ask me dumb questions for the rest of my life?

CODY: Probably.

SARAH: I need to get out of town for a while.

CODY: Hey man. Listen to this, it will calm you down. [He blasts “Bridge Over Troubled Water”] I play this when I need to calm down and change the subject. So. How’s your man treating you? What’s his name? Luke?

SARAH: Luke is fine. Everything is fine at home. Please leave. I can’t have you here.

CODY: Why not?

SARAH: Just because, Cody. It’s just because.

CODY: I think you’re freaking out because you’ve been waiting for me to do this. [CODY leans in for a kiss. He reaches for her hair. SARAH says:]

SARAH: NO. CODY. STOP.

[He doesn’t stop. He touches her hair and sings:]

CODY: Like a bridge over troubled water, I will hang with you. Sail on Silver Girl!

SARAH: You have to leave. I don’t think there even was a robbery. You made it all up as an excuse to see me, didn’t you? You’re a liar and a pervert, Cody. LEAVE.

[CODY is bummed. He blew it again, he weirded her out. He turns away without saying a word and leaves the laundromat. He walks towards Teddy's l-mat. The song is almost over: Like a bridge over troubled water I will ease your mind. Like a bridge over troubled water I will ease your mind.]

NEXT: The Fox in the Garage Part 14: The First Letter to Symphony Press

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