Fiction

Anxiety Jim

Jordan Campbell will be exploring life through the eyes of someone with anxiety, this will be in the form of a short screenplay of an animated television show.

Act one

Int. Jim’s Bedroom – Morning.
Jim is laid on his back in bed. He reaches to turn the alarm off on his clock, he glances over and sees the time is 6.30 am, then sighs a sigh of relief. It is Jim’s day off work. Talking Heads, Road to Nowhere plays on the radio in the background.

3 hours pass…

Int. Jim’s Bedroom (Continuous)
Jim receives a text message from his son Chet. Jim is still in bed and begins to read the message aloud to himself.

Jim
“Hey Jim, Dad, whatever
Don’t forget we are meeting
Today… Oh and I’m bringing
Sandy so don’t be weird either,
I know that’s hard for you.”

Jim looks panicked and begins to perspire heavily – he jolts up too fast and hits the back of his head on the bedframe.

Jim (cont.)
S**t! S**t! S**t!
Still dazed from hitting his head, Jim’s eyes are drawn to the corner of the room – he sees a slug like creature with bold eyes and tiny feet: it begins to talk.

Int. Jim’s Bedroom (Continuous)

Norman
Hi, Jim I’m Norman
I’m what makes you feel
Like you’re gonna throw
Up or s**t your pants –
Long story short,
I’m your Anxiety Jim.

Jim is stunned he screams and then throws up beside the bed.

Norman (cont.)
See Jim that was me
That’s what I’m talking
About, now come on it’s
Time to get ready
Time waits for no man.

Norman slides over towards Jim, but Jim passes out on the bed.

Int. Jim’s Bathroom
Norman is stood over Jim, who is starfished on the tiled floor in a t-shirt, shorts, socks and sandals, Norman is clicking his slimy fingers.

Int. Jim’s Bathroom (continuous)

Jim
(startled voice)
Oh my God! You’re still
Here, You’re real!

Norman
Yeah I’m not going anywhere
Jim, I’m real, I’m your
Anxiety. Just like it’s real
That I dressed you, you
Crapped your pants, and you
Have a tiny Johnson.

Jim stands up and hits his head on the underside of the sink he is both angry and queasy.

Jim
Arghh! Stupid piece of s**t
F**king sink.

He kicks the sink, splashes water on his face and looks around – Norman is nowhere to be seen. Jim laughs a desperate laugh and proceeds to leave the house.

End of Act One.

Act 2

Ext. Bus stop – Day
Jim is boarding a bus into town a shrunken down version of Norman is perched on Jim’s shoulder – Jim is oblivious to this for the time being.

Int. Bus
The bus driver stares at Jim unmercifully; he has pure contempt for life and everyone in it.

Bus Driver
Where are you going?

Jim is about to answer and then catches sight of Norman from the corner of his eye and freezes. The bus driver becomes impatient.

Bus Driver (cont.)
For God’s sake,
I don’t get enough
Money to chauffeur
Charlie Chaplin around.
WHERE ARE YOU GOING?

Something clicks in Jim and he snaps out of it.

Int. Bus (continuous)

Jim
Erm… I’ll have
One to town please.

Bus Driver
Finally the mute speaks
1.80, come on, come on
We’re off schedule.
Jim pulls a ten out of his pocket and sheepishly hands it to the driver.

Bus Driver (cont.)
You are taking the mick right?
F**k my life, the last thing
I need is to be hanging
Around counting out change for
Adam Sandler’s more idiot
Brother. Here’s a receipt
Pick your change
Up from the station.

Norman turns and looks at Jim’s brooding face – they take their seats.

Int. Bus (continuous)
People on the bus begin to stare at Jim he assumes they are looking at Norman he becomes paranoid and uncomfortable.

Norman
What was that A hole’s
Problem?

Jim
How couldn’t he see you?

Norman
Bro, I’m your anxiety!
You’re the only one who
Can see me.

Jim goes red with both embarrassment and Anger; people are still staring and whispering.

Jim
You don’t think it would’ve
Benefitted me to know this
Earlier? I look crazy –
Hell I am crazy I’m arguing
With a slug on my shoulder.

Int. Bus (continuous)
Jim’s body begins to shake and an egg like creature crawls out of his shirt, it looks angry and has sharp triangular teeth.

Norman
Oh, look who came to
The party… hey Jeff.
The little creature begins to talk in an angry snarled voice.

Jeff
Hi Norm, didn’t realise
This was such a sausage
Fest.

Jim is on the verge of mentally imploding.

Jim
Who the f**k is this guy?

Jeff
I’m Jeff, I’m your anxiety
Surrounding confrontation…
I flared up when that old d**k-
Bag started talking s**t about
You bro!

Int. Bus (continuous)
Jeff points to the bus driver. Norman and Jeff are on Jim’s respective shoulders as if they were an Angel and the Devil.

Jeff (cont.)
You need to show that d**k-bag
Who’s boss Jim, call that sucker
Out when you get off.

Norman
Jeff, you know I got your back
Dawg but that is terrible advice.
Jim listen to me man – just stick
To the way society handles these
Things and thank the A hole bus
Driver when you get off.

Jim is in a state of disbelief and internal conflict, he is once again perspiring profusely.

Jim
Both of you just shut up!
I need to think.

Norman
We are your thought process
have you been listening to
me at all?

Int. Bus (continuous)

Jim
Unfortunately, yes…
Why am I responding?
SHUT UP!

The stop is coming up, Jim’s facial expression develops from one of despair into one of intent. The stop arrives and Jim moves to the front of the bus and faces the driver – he flips him off with both hands.

Jim (cont.)
Thanks for nothing
D**k-bag!

Norman (hushed)
Oh dear god.

Jeff
S**t son, s**t just got
real.

The bus driver looks at Jim with sheer rage and begins to get up. Jim’s confidence immediately drains and he once again looks queasy.

Bus Driver
What the f**k did you say?

Int. Bus (continuous)

Jim
I’m sorry?

The bus driver begins to chase Jim off the bus and down the street. Jeff laughs and disappears in a puff of smoke.

End of Act Two.