NewsRadio Episode 8:  "Kashmir"
by NewsRadiator

Disclaimer:  I do not own most of these characters.  I'll return them unharmed.

Author's Note:  The title is in keeping with NR's tradition of Led  Zeppelin-themed episode names.  Dennis Finch from _Just Shoot Me_ makes an appearance here as well.  (Obviously, this takes place prior to his cat's untimely death on that show.)  Also, I apologize for the long stretches of time between my contributions to the archive.  Between college and real life, I've been extremely busy the last few months.  Anyway, please send any and all comments -- good or bad -- to newsradiator@hotmail.com.

'Kashmir'

Scene 1:  Cabin Kitchen

          Lisa is searching the cabinets for breakfast when Dave walks in wearing a bathrobe.  He has a dull look in his eyes, and his hair is wild and messy.  She tries to kiss him, but he protests loudly and pushes her out of the way to get to the pot of coffee sitting on the counter behind her.

Lisa:  Good morning to you too, Dave.

          He fills his mug and downs it in one chug.  He visibly perks up and notices Lisa for the first time.

Dave:  Oh . . . morning Lisa.

          He gives her a quick kiss.

Lisa:  You know, someday your caffeine addiction is going to catch up with you.

Dave:  I'm sure if you concentrate hard enough, you can use some mathematical equation to tell me the exact date the caffeine will kill me.

          Throughout the conversation, Dave has downed a second cup.

Lisa:  At the rate you're going, you won't last into the afternoon.

          Dave just smirks at her as they both sit down to the table.

Dave:  Hey, where's Joe?  Over at Kate's again?

Lisa:  Every night this week.  They're rabbits, I tell ya.

Dave:  Like we can talk.  We were rabbits at one time.  Sneaking around behind everyone's back, hiding out in my office, going out for extra long lunch breaks . . .

Lisa:  (wistfully)  Yeah . . . .  What happened?  Did we get old?

Dave:  Nah . . . just more discreet.

Lisa:  It's tough to differentiate.

Dave:  What about last week?  In the back of your car with a tow truck on the way. That's something.

Lisa:  Yeah, you're right.  We still have it.

Dave:  Yes, and that tow truck driver is well aware of that thanks to his front row seat.

Lisa:  I keep telling you cable is overrated.

          Beth marches in and looks at them expectantly.

Dave:  Yes?

Beth:  Are you aware that Matthew is entering his cats in a show today?

Dave:  No.  Why, what's the problem?

Beth:  The PROBLEM is that right now he's brushing and primping them to get them ready.

Lisa:  I thought you liked that kind of stuff.  You're always doing it to Daisy.

Beth:  That's the problem!  He wouldn't let ME do it.  Instead he invited Brett over here to help him.  He said Brett is more feminine than I am.  Apparently, he knows all about primping.

Dave:  Well, I don't know if he meant primping or pimping, but either way he has a point.

Beth:  Dave!

Dave:  What?!  You know, I thought you were leading up to a REAL problem
with
          Matthew's cats . . . like their excessive shedding.

Lisa:  Oh, if you're talking about all that hair in the hallway, I'm pretty sure it's Max's.

Dave:  Max or his pig?

Lisa:  (shrugs)  It's tough to differentiate.

Scene 2:  Cabin Living Room

          Dave, Lisa, and Beth all walk in to find Matthew and Brett getting Choo Choo and Mitt Mitt ready.

Dave:  Matthew, it's time to go to work.  Are you going to ride with us or with Max?

Matthew:  Neither.  Brett is driving me to New York for the cat show.

Dave:  Who says?

Matthew:  David, my cats are destined for greatness.  Who are you to stand in their way?

Dave:  I'm your boss.

Lisa:  Oh, let him go, Dave.  You might actually get some work done.  On the other hand, I don't see why you have to go, Brett.

Brett:  Just think of all the effeminate men I can hook up with at a cat show.  I'm destined to get some.  Who are you to stand in my way?

Lisa:  I'm the boss who doesn't give a damn about your sex life.

Brett:  Oh, come on.  You can live without me for one day.  The elf can help you.

Beth:  Better an elf than a fairy.

Brett:  Touche.

Lisa:  Alright fine, whatever.  You can have the day off to take Matthew to New York, but I want you back to work tomorrow.

Brett: Yes, Boss.

Dave:  Matthew, stay as long as you want . . . please.

Scene 3:  Dave's Office

          Dave is working on his computer when Joe walks in, rubbing his stiff neck.

Dave:  I see you've decided to join us.

Joe:  Yeah.

          Dave notices Joe's physical discomfort.

Dave:  What's wrong?

          Joe looks around nervously before shutting the door.

Joe:  Dude, does Lisa ever wear you out?

Dave:  In what way?

Joe:  Physically.

Dave:  Is there a reason we're discussing this?

Joe:  It's Kate.  I'm no match for her.  She's got the sexual appetite of . . .

Dave:  Again, Joe.  Is there a reason we're discussing this?

Joe:  Sorry, dude.  I'm just confused.

Dave:  About what?  If Kate is as . . . enthusiastic as you say, I fail to see the problem.

Joe:  What if I can't keep up with her?

Dave:  Then you die trying.  You'll go out on top . . . figuratively speaking that is.

Joe:  You make me sound desperate.

Dave:  Well . . . it HAS been awhile . . .

Joe:  Whatever, dude.  I'm outta here.

          Joe leaves just as Jimmy is coming in.

Jimmy:  Hey, Joe.  What's up?

Joe:  Too much for too long.  Dammit, it needs rest!

Jimmy:  Huh?  (to Dave)  What did he mean by that?

Dave:  It would seem that Kate is a nymphomaniac.

Jimmy:  Two in one office?  What are the odds?

Dave:  Two that we know of, sir.  (gets his patented crazy look)  They're everywhere.

Beth:  (from outside the office)  I heard that!

Jimmy:  So what you up to?

Dave:  Funny you should ask.

          Beth walks in and shuts the door.

Beth:  He's going to propose to Lisa.

Jimmy:  What?!

Dave:  What?!

Beth:  I found the ring in your desk this morning, and I overheard you talking to your mom on the phone.

Dave:  Would it be so much to ask . . .

Beth:  Dave, you know it's pointless, so just skip all that and get to the good part.

Jimmy:  Yeah.  How long have you been thinking this over?

Dave:  A while.

Jimmy:  So you really are gonna do it?

Dave:  I'm planning on it, sir.

Jimmy:  You have high hopes, son?

Dave:  I don't know.  Lisa's been throwing curve balls at me since the day I met her.

Beth:  Well, some women . . . after going through one marriage, they don't want to go through it again.  So you could like live together for the rest of your lives but never get married.

Dave:  Are you TRYING to depress me?  Besides, Lisa didn't go through a marriage.

Beth:  Not legally, no.

Dave:  Not emotionally either.  She had a wedding, and then he got swept off to prison. That is most definitely not a marriage.

Beth:  You're right.

Dave:  Wait a minute.  Did Lisa say something to you about not wanting to get married?

Beth:  No, she hasn't said one way or the other.  I'm just trying to suggest possible outcomes for what you're about to do.

Jimmy:  Relax, son.  Everything will turn out fine.  Whether she says yes or no, you'll still be together, and that's all that really matters.

          Dave stops pacing and stares at Jimmy.

Jimmy:  What?

Dave:  What you just said . . . actually made sense.  I guess I'm just not accustomed to that.

Jimmy:  Well, I'll be a son of a gun.  I did just make sense.  It must be a sign for things to come.

Beth:  The apocalypse?

Jimmy:  No . . . Lisa's answer to Dave's little question.

Dave:  (sarcastically)  Oh, and to think I forgot to consult my horoscope today.

Jimmy:  Well, you did manage to get rid of Matthew for the day.  Things are looking up.

Scene 4:  Cat Show -- Backstage

          Matthew and Brett are getting Choo Choo and Mitt Mitt ready for the show.

Brett:  Are you allowed to enter two cats in the show?

Matthew:  I don't know.  I hadn't thought of that.  Oh my God . . .

Brett:  Which one do you think has a better chance?

Matthew:  A proud father never says which child he likes better.

Brett:  Matthew, this is just sad.

Matthew:  Alright, alright.  I have an idea.  You can enter one of the cats.

Brett:  Oh no . . .

Matthew:  PLEASE!  I don't want them to be jealous of each other if I have to choose.

Brett:  These are cats we're talking about!  Small, brainless furballs that find it highly amusing to chase their tails and lick their asses!

          There is a collective gasp from the other cat owners after Brett finishes his tirade.  He looks around meekly then picks up one of Matthew's cats and starts petting it.

Matthew:  It's okay, everyone.  He's just kidding.

          Suddenly, Dennis Finch walks up to them, carrying his cat, Spartacus.

Finch:  (to Brett)  Dude, what are you even doing here?

Brett:  Hunting for man meat.

Finch:  Oh, so it seems that the cats aren't the only ones who get their kicks by chasing tails and licking asses.

Brett:  Bashing one of your own kind?

Finch:  Uh . . . no.  I used to be married to a supermodel.  Perhaps you've heard of her -- Adrienne Barker?

Brett:  If you're straight, then what is going on with your hair?

Finch:  Oooh, that's a good one coming from a guy wearing leopard skin pants.

Brett:  They accentuate my ass.  (as he turns around)  What do you think?

Finch:  I have no opinion.  Now why don't you and your man meat buddy (pointing to Matthew) take your lame-assed cats and get the hell out of here?  You obviously don't stand a chance against Spartacus.

Matthew:  Excuse me, Mister . . .

Finch:  Finch.  Dennis Finch.

Matthew:  Yes, well, Dennis, judging by your cat, I guess you didn't read the show rules and regulations thoroughly.

Finch:  What do you mean?

Matthew:  No half-breeds allowed.

          Dennis's jaw drops, and he emits a high-pitched squeal.

Scene 5:  Newsroom

          Dave walks out of his office and up to Lisa as she is coming out of the booth.

Lisa:  Hey.

          Beth rolls her chair next to them.  Dave glares at her, then nudges Lisa a few steps back.  Beth rolls her chair further towards them.  They repeat the process several more times before Dave finally grows annoyed.

Dave:  (to Beth)  Have you lost all subtlety?

Beth:  It's hard to lose something you never had.

Dave:  (fake smile)  Go away.

          She rolls back to her desk in a huff.

Dave:  (to Lisa)  Hey, listen.  Let's go back to the cabin early tonight.  We can go out to a fancy dinner or something.

Lisa:  (gives him a strange look)  Okay.

          She walks towards the newspaper offices, and Beth sidles up to Dave again.

Beth:  So . . . how you gonna do it?

Dave:  Some things need to be kept secret around here.

Beth:  Ring at the bottom of her champagne glass?

Dave:  No.

Beth:  Well, are you gonna do it some unconventional way like that or are you just gonna come right out and ask?

Dave:  You'll hear about it tomorrow . . . assuming she says yes.

Beth:  (whining)  But Dave . . .

Dave:  Tomorrow, Beth.

          After he goes back to his office, Beth smiles to herself.

Beth:  We'll just see about that.  I may be lacking in subtlety, but I'm still an artist.

          Joe walks up to see her talking to herself and simply shakes his head.

Beth:  What?

Scene 6:  Breakroom

          Beth walks in to find Max and Joe talking.  They become silent when she appears.

Beth:  Whatcha guys talking about?

Joe:  Nothing.

Beth:  Uh huh.  Joe, if this is about your sex problem, I already know all about it.

Joe:  WHAT?!  Did Dave tell you?

Beth:  Didn't have to.  I had my ear to the door the entire time.

Joe:  Dammit, Beth, what does a guy have to do . . .

Beth:  Wait, hold on.  Why is everyone picking today to be indignant about
something
          I've been doing for years?

Joe:  We've always been indignant.

Max:  Not me.  (looks slyly at Beth)  I LIKE you knowing about my personal life.

Beth:  There's not much to know, Max.  Your personal life consists of a pig and lots of food.

Max:  Different strokes . . .

Beth:  Anyway, Joe, why are you talking to Max about this?  I'm the expert on nymphomaniacs.

Max:  Takes one to know one.

Beth:  (looks at him like he's a moron)  Yes, Max, I believe that was my point.

Joe:  I didn't ask Max.  He found out from Mr. James.

Beth:  Oh.

Joe:  So?

Beth:  So what?

Joe:  What's you expert advice?

Beth:   Oh.  Well, my advice is this . . . when you have someone who's so "passionate" about this sort of thing, you better believe it's gonna be the best sex of your life, and there's no way in hell that you should give that up.

Max:  You know, I see her point.

Joe:  Max, you wouldn't give up any sex . . . no matter how bad it was.

Max:  You're right.

Joe:  Man, just forget this.  I should never have opened my mouth.  Forget I ever said anything.

Beth:  Wait, Joe.  I came in here to tell you guys to not make any plans for tonight.  We all have to go to The Tea Room at six.  We have a major event to witness.

Joe:  Whatever.

Beth:  (as Joe walks out)  Don't tell Dave or Lisa!

Max:  Beth, I'd like proof of your theory.  I fear it may be unfounded.

Beth:  What theory?

Max:  That nymphomaniacs make the best lovers.  I'd like a demonstration.

Beth:  Your pig can't seem to get enough.  Ask him.

Max:  Will you people just DROP it?

Scene 7:  Cat Show -- Backstage

          Brett is primping Mitt Mitt when he spots another man in tight, leopard skin pants.  The other man is walking by but stops and does a double take.

Brett:  (throatily)  Meow.

          The other man smiles shyly.

Man:  Right back at ya, Tiger.

Brett:  I am man meat.  Hear me roar.

          As they leave together, Dennis sneaks out from behind a pillar and pours a liquid down Mitt Mitt's throat.

Scene 8:  Newsroom

          Beth, Joe, Jimmy, and Max are all gathered and putting on their
coats to leave.  Lisa walks out of the booth.

Lisa:  Where are you guys going?

Beth:  To a movie.

Lisa:  It's only five o'clock.

Joe:  Dave said we could knock off early.  That Rob guy's gonna hold down the fort.

Lisa:  How about you wait for us then?  I'll talk Dave into skipping that dinner he mentioned.

Jimmy:  NO!

Lisa:  Why not?

Beth:  It's not your kind of movie.

Lisa:  Why?  What are you seeing?

Jimmy:  I don't know, but I can assure you it won't be brainy.

Lisa:  Mr. James . . .

Joe:  Lisa, do you really wanna go see a movie with a bunch of people getting their asses kicked and their brains blown out?

Lisa:  (meekly)  No.

Joe:  Alright then.

          Lisa walks away.

Max:  Remind me why we're doing this again.

Beth:  Because they're our friends, and this is an important event in their lives.

Max:  That's right.  THEIR lives.

Joe:  You know, Max, normally I'd agree with you, but I need a break from you-know-who.

Max:  Not man enough?

Joe:  Dude, don't go there.

Max:  Yeah, you're right.

Scene 9:  Catshow

          Dennis and Matthew are standing in line with all of the other cat owners, waiting for the winners to be announced.  They are both holding their cats.

Finch:  Where's your friend?

Matthew:  He disappeared and abandoned my cat.

Finch:  How'd you pick which cat to enter?

Matthew:  Eenie meenie miney moe.

Finch:  Very scientific.  Look, you know, I think we got off on the wrong foot.  I apologize.

Matthew:  You're right.  I'm sorry too.  Spartacus is very obviously not a half-breed.

Finch:  And your cat is most definitely not lame-assed.  As a matter of fact, can I hold him for a minute?

Matthew:  Oh, I don't know.  The judges are about to hand out the ribbons.

Finch:  Come on, man.  I wanna admire your cat.

Matthew:  Okay.

          They switch cats, and Finch starts squeezing Mitt Mitt's stomach.  The cat meows loudly and starts hissing.

Matthew:  What the hell are you doing?!

Finch:  Dammit, the bottle said fifteen minutes!

          Matthew dumps Spartacus and grabs Mitt Mitt just in time for the judges to arrive.

Judge:  And the Best of Show goes to . . .

          Finch and Matthew are on pins and needles.

Judge:  Matthew Brock and Mitt Mitt!

Finch:  Dammit.

Matthew:  Oh my God, I won!  (to the judge)  This wasn't a pity vote, was it?

Judge:  Excuse me?

Matthew:  Forget it.  Nevermind.  I can't believe this.

          The judge takes the cat while Matthew places the prize collar around its neck.  Just as the judge is about to hand Mitt Mitt back, the laxative finally takes effect, and the judge is blasted.

Finch:  What wonderful timing.

          Matthew looks at the judge's pissed expression.

Matthew:  Oh shi . . .

Scene 10:  Brett's Car

Brett:  Well, isn't that an understatement.

          They are driving back to New Hampshire.  The cats are in their carriers in the back seat.

Brett:  You know, when I agreed to do this, I didn't know it entailed transporting a psychotic cat that smells like . . .

Matthew:  Alright, alright.  You know, this would never have happened if you had been able to control yourself.  You left Mitt Mitt open to attack.

Brett:  Open to attack?  Listen to yourself.  What is wrong with you cat people?

Matthew:  We're of a different breed.

Brett:  No pun intended?

Matthew:  Huh?

Brett:  Oh jeez.  I can't take this anymore.  We need to pull over again.  You have cleanup duty.

Matthew:  Fine.

Brett:  Do you really need two cats?  We could always ditch the sick one on the side of the road.

Matthew:  I could always ditch you on the side of the road.

Brett:  You can't drive, Matthew.

Matthew:  (pauses for a minute)  We'll just be a minute.

Scene 11:  Restaurant

          Beth, Joe, Jimmy, and Max are all crouched behind a low wall, staring at all of the patrons.

Max:  I don't see them.  Come to think of it, I didn't see either of their cars in the parking lot.

Beth:  I heard Dave making reservations.  They'll be here.

Jimmy:  Do you have any idea how pathetic we are?

          An upper crust family of three walks by on their way to the exit.

Woman:  What are those people doing?  They look like they're going to jump out and kill someone.

Man:  Don't worry.  It's just that crazy old billionaire and his cohorts.

Son:  (yells)  How's it goin Mister President?

          Jimmy whips his head around.

Jimmy:  Why you little punk!

Scene 12:  WNHX Roof

          Dave leads Lisa out onto the roof.  They're both dressed for fine dining.

Lisa:  Okay, Dave, the suspense is killing me.  What are we doing on the roof when it's five degrees outside?

Dave:  The whole dinner thing was a rouse.

Lisa:  For what?

Dave:  To trick everyone into leaving us alone for a while.

Lisa:  As wonderful as that sounds, aren't there better places to be alone?

          Dave starts getting nervous and begins to stammer.

Dave:  Now that you mention it, yes . . . but I'm kind of winging it here.

Lisa:  Winging what?

Dave:  (quietly)  I . . . I wanted to make it special, but I guess . . .  Oh hell, forget it.  It was a stupid idea.

Lisa:  (gently)  Dave, calm down.  Just say whatever it is.  It's me.

Dave:  No, that's alright.  Let's just go back inside.  There's no use in freezing our asses off out here while I stutter and stammer.

Lisa:  Dave . . .

Dave:  What?

Lisa:  What are we up here for?

          He finally relaxes and spits it out.

Dave:  I wanted to ask you . . . to ask you if you wanted to get . . . married.

          He says the last word in a whisper, but Lisa hears it anyway and smiles.

Lisa:  Dave?

          He doesn't lift up his head to face her.  He's staring at the floor.

Dave:  Yeah?

Lisa:  Yes.

          His head jolts up, and he has a shocked expression on his face.

Dave:  Huh?

Lisa:  (smiling)  Yes.

Dave:  Yes?

          She nods, and Dave excitedly hugs her.  After a minute, he pulls back and looks at her appreciatively.

Dave:  Doesn't seem so cold out here anymore, does it?

Lisa:  No, it doesn't.

Scene 13:  Outside the Cabin

          Beth, Joe, Jimmy, and Max are all walking towards the front door.

Beth:  Mr. James, you've really gotta stop getting into fights with prominent citizens around here.

Jimmy:  Yeah, but this time I won.

Beth:  He was ten.

Jimmy:  Beth, you take your victories where you can get them.  My mentor taught me that.

Joe:  You had a mentor?

Jimmy:  No, but if I had, I'm sure he would have taught me that.

Beth:  Would this imaginary mentor have advocated beating up little kids?

          They approach the door and find a note attached.  Beth picks it up and starts reading.

Beth:  Dear Suckers,
                  You've fallen for my trap just as I hoped and expected. 
                    The Tea Room was a decoy.  I apologize if I wasted
                    your evening completely.  Not really, but it sounds
                    sincere at least.  Thank you for giving my pure evilness
                    a chance to re-emerge, however briefly.  As for Lisa and I,
                   we'll see you at work tomorrow morning.

                                                                            
                               Dave

          P.S.
          She said yes.
         
*******************************************************************

          Everyone expresses their excitement except Max.

Max:  Just great!  Now she'll have even more sway with Dave.  She'll convince him to fire me.

Joe:  Pull your head out of your ass for one second and just be happy for them.

Max:  I pull my head out for no man.

          Just then, Matthew walks up, carrying his cats.

Matthew:  What up?

Jimmy:  Matthew, what is that smell?

Matthew:  Someone gave Mitt Mitt a laxative before the competition, but we still took home the grand prize.

Max:  That's not all you took home.

Joe:  (holding his nose)  You know, Kate's place ain't lookin so bad after all.  See you guys tomorrow.

Matthew:  What?  What's wrong?

          Everyone rushes into the cabin, leaving Matthew on the porch.

Jimmy:  (from inside)  Matthew . . . barn . . . NOW!


The End


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