Hey guys. Last night my creative juices were flowing and I had a really great (or at least I thought it was great) idea to write a short play in which a car dealership is run like the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The characters in the play are very similar to some of the current staff, but are only loosely based on their public personas. I'm sure Dominik and Raheem are very nice people, and this isn't meant as a dig to either of them. Here is the first act, which covers the 2009 offseason, and all the changes that took place. Before any of you get all bent out of shape about this after reading it, please realize that this is a satire. It is meant to be humorous, but also thought provoking.
Now this is certainly not the norm on Buc 'Em and I don't know how it is going to go over. I at least wanted to give it a try to see if you guys liked it. If there is a good response, I will write the second act, which will be a satire of the 2009 season and 2010 postseason thus far. I hope you enjoy reading as much as I enjoyed writing it. Check out my masterpiece (I'm kidding, if anyone realizes my limitations as a writer, it's me) after the jump.
Act I: Scene I
Scene: The curtain opens to reveal the inside of a car dealership. It is a fancy show room, but oddly empty. Old banners such as "2002 Dealership of the year" adorn the walls, along with a calendar that clearly shows the month and year as January, 2009. A man enters the show room and curiously looks around, as if he recognizes the room, but much has changed. He is a nondescript man, clean shaven, with a slightly bewildered look upon his face. After standing around patiently for an inappropriate amount of time he gives a hearty "Harummph!". A rustling is heard back stage and another man enters stage left. This man is dressed in an expensive but cheap looking suit. He has salt and pepper hair, and walks towards the first man with an air of nervous energy and authority.
Dominik: "Well hello there sir! Welcome to Glazer Automotive, where we strive for perfection."
Consumer: "Oh hello, I'm sorry I don't recognize you, you must be new. I'm an old customer here. I used to deal with the dealership manager Bruce. Is he around?"
Dominik flashes a look of contempt, but recovers quickly.
Dominik: "Ah, I see. Unfortunately Bruce has been let go. He's over at Snyder automotive now. I'm actually not new. I've been here for years. I started out washing cars, worked my way to small position in the finance department and fifteen years later; here I am! The new head honcho. My name's Mark, nice to meet ya."
Dominik sticks his hand out to shake. A few awkward seconds ensue as the consumer wrestles with the thought of shaking back. Eventually he offers his hand reluctantly.
Consumer: "Oh, I see. Well, what about one of the other guys? Derrick or Ike, or maybe even Joey? I'm sure they would be able to help me out just fine."
Dominik: "Oooh, unfortunately Derrick, Ike and Joey took an early retirement. We hired a couple of kids to take their place. You know, younger equals cheaper and all. I'm sure you know how it goes. Are you a businessman sir?"
Consumer: "Well, I am but I don't really see how that is relevant. The reason I am here is because my car has really been acting up lately, and now it is broken down completely. I bought it in the late nineties, and it really purred all the way up until 2002, but over the past few years I have had to bring it back once a year to get fixed. Your head mechanic Jon usually did enough to get me back on the road, but we never could get it back to perfect again. Heck, this year the car started out running great, but over the past four weeks it has just completely broken down. Is Jon around? I'd really like to give him a piece of my mind. I've had it with his short term fixes!"
Dominik: "Well I'm sure this won't surprise you at this point sir, but Jon is no longer with us either. Our new head mechanic is Raheem. He used to be our brake technician, but the first move I made as the new manager was to fire Jon and give Raheem his job. You should see how enthusiastic he is! I could just smell the potential on the kid. Plus, (puts hand up to mouth and whispers) He does whatever I tell him to do, without giving me any lip like Jon used to. He's just happy to be the head mechanic so he doesn't stick his nose where it doesn't belong."
Dominik lets out a hearty laugh.
Consumer: "Oh, well I guess that's nice. Well listen Mark, I'm really, really loyal to Glazer Automotive. Their cars have been with me through thick and thin for the past fifteen years. I want to stick with you guys, even if you're new to the game."
Dominik claps hands and gets a sleazy gleam in his eye.
Dominik: "Perfect! You are my type of customer sir. Let's go have Raheem take a look at your vehicle. Shall we?"
Dominik motions for the consumer to walk with him and both men exit stage right. Curtain closes.
Act I: Scene II
Scene: The curtain opens to reveal an automotive workshop. The shop is littered with various automotive parts, spread helter skelter across the stage. Dominik, the consumer, and Raheem are huddled over an old beaten up automobile, peering into the engine. Raheem is a young man, seemingly too young to hold a position of authority over the older mechanics present across the stage, who are working tirelessly in the background. He talks very fast, not auctioneer fast, but just fast enough so that you don't have time to register anything he says for a few seconds until after he says it.
Raheem: "Umm huh. Yep. She's toast, that's for sure. You see the problem is that these parts are just too old to be of any good use anymore."
While Raheem is talking, he is yanking out engine parts and throwing them haphazardly over his shoulder.
Raheem: "See some of these parts might fetch a good price on the open market, but being that they are so old, it's probably not even worth it to try to sell them. You're better off just throwing them away. You are better off just buying a new car my man. It would cost you a fortune to replace all these parts.
Sensing his opportunity, Dominik chimes in with his sales pitch. It is obvious to the audience that this is a premeditated scenario that Dominik and Raheem have planned, but the consumer seems to be blissfully unaware of the set up.
Dominik: "You know it's funny you should say that Raheem, because the newest model I ordered has just come in. The best part of all is that this model is extremely affordable. The price hasn't gone up from the last new model you purchased. Isn't that amazing sir? We didn't raise the price in these tough economic times, just so guys like you can continue to enjoy our product.
This model has all the latest parts and technology. The engine alone just got out of the testing stages in Kansas. Car and Driver Magazine ranked it the third best engine coming off the assembly line this past year. Once it gets a few miles on it, it should really purr.
And even better, it's not just the engine! This thing has almost entirely new parts. These new parts were made in Taiwan. So they haven't been really tested in the U.S. market yet, but that's okay because that makes them cheaper. Don't you see? I'm giving you the deal of a lifetime here sir.
At this point Raheem pushes the new model onto the stage. The paint is a sleek and shiny crimson, with odd colored (some would say pewter) bumpers and tires. A few of the mechanics in the background gaze contemptuously at the new model, and upon noticing this Dominik shoos them off the stage. The consumer circles the car, tediously at first, but you can tell he is getting more excited as he thinks about the potential of each new gadget and feature. After all, he really and truly wants to like the car, and the spider has lured its prey deep within its web. We watch in awe as the skepticism on the consumer's face slowly washes away and is replaced with unbridled hope. Although he has yet to utter a single word since seeing the new model, we know without a doubt that the consumer is sold.
Consumer: "It just seems strange that something so great could be had for such a modest price. How does it stack up vs. the other cars in its class?"
Dominik: "Well, we have no way of knowing that right now sir, but our predictive analysis has led us to believe that we will be just as good, if not better than we have been in years past. The best part is that with all these new parts you won't have to bring your car in yearly for a quick fix anymore. These new parts should get the job done for a good 4-6 years, depending on the warranty you purchase."
Consumer: "Really?! That's amazing. You guys are doing great work. I'm sold. I've always wanted a great car like this. How quickly can I take delivery?"
Dominik: "It happens to be your lucky day sir. Some of the customers that had pre-ordered this model cancelled and we now have a surplus of vehicles in stock. You can take it home today if you like. Please, won't you step into my office so that we may begin the paperwork?
Consumer: "Sure. I have some time. Would it be possible for me to speak with Mr. Glazer? I would love to tell him how excited I am about this new product."
Dominik gets a pained look on his face, which may or may not be genuine.
Dominik: "Oh, I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but Mr. Glazer has suffered a terrible stroke and is no longer active in the day to day operations of Glazer Automotive. He has left his responsibilities in the extremely capable hands of his sons. I'm sure they would love to hear about how enthused you are with our product, but they are unfortunately away on business in England at the moment. Now please, won't you follow me to my office?
Dominik and the consumer exit stage left. Once they exit the stage the side view mirror falls off the new model. Raheem giggles quietly and quickly fixes it. Curtain closes.