Original release date: August 13, 2021
“I don’t remember his last name. He was handsome, with a nice smile and startlingly blue eyes. The sex was good, I think. We didn’t know each other well. We never would.”
* * *
♪ We face the music together ♪
♪ And throw our hats in the ring ♪
♪ Facing all kinds of weather ♪
♪ And scared to death of everything ♪
♪ Hey ♪
♪ When the sun comes up, we’ll be on our way ♪
♪ And we don’t care where we land ♪
♪ And the waves are high, but we won’t turn round ♪
♪ ‘Cause your hand is in my hand ♪
♪ And, oh-oh ♪
♪ You make me feel invincible ♪
♪ ‘Cause it’s you and me ♪
♪ Through the wind and hail ♪
♪ Setting sail into the world ♪
[Ben] It just seems like a really difficult job.
I’m telling you, I would 100% rather go to an insane asylum in the 1950s than work for the TSA today.
In the 1950s?
You would rather receive the full Frances Farmer treatment than tell people to take their toiletries out of their carry-ons?
Yes, I would. Have you been to an airport recently?
People are horrible.
Mm. So, how long have you lived in this neighborhood?
It’s so cute here.
It is cute, right?
Yeah, I’ve been here for two years.
And I was in, uh, Astoria before that.
Not as cute?
Well, you know, it was fine.
You know, it served its purpose.
Ooh, do you mind if we stop for a second?
I’ve been hearing about this book forever, and I’m sure you’ve read it already, but…
It’s about these girls at a private school, in, like, maybe England?
Maybe New Zealand? I forget.
But they go on this picnic, and their teacher is a lesbian.
Or anyways, everybody thinks she’s a lesbian.
And she’s with all these girl students.
So you’re giving up waitressing and you’re…
[Whitney] I’m not giving it up. I’m pivoting.
Okay, I would be teaching boxing, but I wouldn’t actually have to hit anyone.
Does that make sense?
I mean, it’s like, you learn how to fight, but you never actually use it.
Robbie, why don’t you take this one?
Uh, isn’t that from The Karate Kid?
[Pam] Yes. [laughs]
[Leo] He’s adorable.
I’m telling you, he’s very cute.
He’s very funny.
[Leo] Just give it a shot.
Just one date.
[Judy] Where did you meet him?
[Ben] My friend Daryl works with his friend and they set us up. I’ve seen his picture, so it’s not, like, a total blind date.
Yeah, uh, he’s cute.
Yeah, he’s-he’s handsome.
Oh. Not what you have on your vision board?
The vision board is not important, Judy.
I should never have shown you that.
What’s important is that I’m putting myself out there.
Read me the list again.
It soothes me.
You just like making fun of me.
“Older than me by at least eight years, taller than me, strong jawline, his celebrity look-alike is Alexander Skarsgård from Big Little Lies.
But not abusive.”
[laughs] Ah. Amazing.
Ah. A list only a 22-year-old could make.
I admire your vision, though.
Keep it up, hon.
I am friends with the woman who sits across from me, but other than that, no.
So, do you like working there?
Are you asking if it’s my dream job? No.
[chuckles] But, uh, it’s gonna have to do, at least until my writing takes off.
Oh, yeah, that’s right. Leo said you were a writer.
That is, that is so cool.
Uh, what is it? Uh, novels, or…
I write screenplays.
I’m learning there’s a big difference between writing a screenplay and having a screenplay produced.
I’m still trying to figure out how to bridge that gap.
I have a feeling you’re gonna figure it out just fine.
Sorry about that.
You can get it if you need to. It’s fine.
[chuckles] Um, not important. It’s just my sister Natalie.
I’ll call her later.
[Whitney] Okay, I understand where you could…
You’ve never been in a fight. How could you teach boxing, you’ve never been in a fight.
I have been in a fight.
I can bite.
[Pam] Please, where were you in a fight, Urban Outfitters?
First of all, fuck you.
[Ben] I am friends with the woman who sits across from me, but other than that, no.
So, do you like working there?
Eh… I don’t know. [laughs softly]
It’s sort of boring, I guess.
What about you?
Uh, I like teaching. I-I love it, actually.
I didn’t think that I would, but after two years with Teach For America, I thought, “I think this is what I should be doing right now. I’m proud of this.”
That’s so cool.
Um, if you don’t mind me asking, what do you want to do? Long-term.
Long-term? Uh… [chuckles]
I don’t know.
I mean, I do know, but it just, it sounds silly when I say it out loud.
No, you can say it. Say it.
[chuckles] Maybe after another drink.
Excuse me, could I just have another white wine, please?
And you live in Astoria, right?
Ugh. Don’t remind me.
And lower your voice.
Oh, wait, wait.
What’s wrong with Astoria? I have, I have friends out there. It’s-it’s super cute.
It’s just not where I want to be.
You know, it’s a, it’s sublet and I’d rather be in the city.
I didn’t move to New York to live in an outer borough.
Where are you?
Um, uh, Long Island City.
[Ben] Thank you.
Get it if you need to. It’s totally fine.
[chuckles] Um, not important.
It’s just my sister Natalie.
I’ll call her later.
Yeah, I mean, it’s fiction anyways.
That’s the best part, is she just made the whole thing up.
Wow. Well, that-that’s amazing that she could pull it off.
I would love to read something that you’ve written, sometime.
[stammers] Well, I’m-I’m sure we could arrange that.
Well, if you don’t like working in finance, you have to change that.
You have to take the steps to get you to where you want to be.
You are totally right.
Look, I’m not saying it’s easy, believe me, but I do think it’s…
we can only be as happy as we allow ourselves to be.
You sound like Oprah.
Wha… Yes, Oprah and a very good therapist have-have gotten me on the right path.
I’m certainly not there yet, but I’m at least moving towards it.
I’m talking too much, huh?
No. Not at all.
I was just thinking you’re so handsome.
Uh, well, do you go on a lot of dates, or…?
Do I go on a lot of dates?
Short answer: no, slightly longer answer: I got out of a relationship last year, and I’ve been a little slow to get back into the mix.
Well, you can only be on your own timeline, right?
You know, you can’t force that if you aren’t ready.
Or interested. Right?
What are you thinking now?
That I think you’re also smart.
You are handsome and smart.
In no particular order.
Seventh grade. Stacey Godek.
She called me white trash, and I pushed her over a bike rack.
White trash? That is a term I don’t think we use nearly enough these days.
You are right.
I’m sorry, are we boring you?
No. My dad just texted me.
And you’re texting him back immediately? Son of the year.
He likes to check in. I like that he does.
Oh, you know who I saw who’s looking rough?
She was walking down Ninth between shows.
Yeah, Phantom has not treated her well all these years.
[Pam] You know she has no money?
She had to borrow money from me…
[Ben] Wait, you’ve never been to The Pines?
How is that possible?
I’ve just never been.
Isn’t it kind of… I don’t know, druggy?
Druggy? No. My God, no.
It’s… I mean, if you are looking for drugs, then sure, you can find them, but you could say that about anyplace.
You could probably find drugs at Th-The Met.
If you were really looking for them.
Yeah, I don’t-I don’t know about that.
Yeah, it’s just my sister.
I’m sorry, it’s really hard to hear you.
Is this better?
So, do you go on a lot of dates?
Why do you ask?
You just seem social.
Not at all, you’re just…
You’re good at talking to people.
Better than I am.
I guess I am pretty social.
I try to put myself out there, I guess.
Hey, do you want to get out of here?
Maybe we could leave…
Now we can leave.
Toby Dooley. It’s Ford from Interlochen.
Holy shit. How are you?
I just moved here last year. How are you?
I actually just moved here, like, a year ago, too.
I can’t believe it took me so long.
[Ford] This is wild…
[radio announcer] There’s a bit of a slowdown on the southbound MTR, as there’s a stalled vehicle in the right lane.
[Toby and Ford laughing]
Oh, my God, I’m so sorry. Hi, I’m Toby.
Toby, this is Ben.
You two went to camp together?
It was really more than camp, it was like a… totally transformative experience as a young person.
We were part of this production of The House of Bernarda Alba that truly shaped my understanding of puppets.
Now every single time I see a puppet, I’m like, “Am I going up the back, or am I gonna do the string-string?”
You know, ’cause that’s the marionette.
Then there’s also kabuki puppetry… it’s so crazy that there’s so many types.
Whatever. I’m going…
[Natalie] Give me a call when you get a chance.
Well, maybe if you do actually listen to your voice mail, you can call back.
And you should.
[Natalie] Where have you been?
I’m sorry, I was… What happened?
We’ve been leaving messages for you all night.
I’m sorry. Just… tell me what happened?
We were at Deena’s party and Dad was grilling burgers, and he finished and passed off the tray to me, and then he just… fell down.
What was it, a-a heart attack, a stroke?
They’re not exactly sure yet.
They ran a bunch of tests, but we’re still waiting.
What do you mean?
He fell down, and he was unconscious.
There was no warning sound, he just… fell.
[whispers] Oh, my God.
Devin and Michael started doing CPR, and I called an ambulance. It was… awful.
They used those paddle things on him, on the back porch.
They got him into an ambulance, and we’re all at the hospital now.
I should come home.
I don’t know. Yes.
I mean, he’s on life support. Maybe wait until tomorrow when we know more.
I don’t want to wait that long.
Then you should come home.
Okay, I’ll, uh… I’ll call you back when I have my ticket information.
I’ll try to get the earliest flight out.
I love you, too.
[Ford] We definitely need to get together.
[Toby] DM me.
Okay. And if I don’t respond, just keep DM’ing me.
Ben, it is so nice to meet you.
Yeah, you, too.
[laughs] Um, well… it’s crazy that you can just bump into someone like that on the street after not having seen them for… well, years.
I love it. That could only happen in New York.
Fuck. Shit. I don’t have my phone.
[laughs] How is that possible?
I don’t know, I don’t know, I must have left it at brunch.
We’ll go back and get it.
No, it’s, like, ten blocks. Just call it.
This is, like, the fifth time this month you have lost your phone.
Is this some kind of a cry for help?
[Whitney] Yes, I am in desperate need of cell phone attention.
[Ben] I love you, too.
What can I do?
Thank you, though.
Want to talk about it?
My-my dad had a heart attack or a… a stroke.
He’s in a coma now. No one knows what’s gonna happen.
I’m so sorry.
I have to figure out a-a plane ticket.
I-I can do that.
You pack, and-and I’ll look for flights for you.
Where’s your computer?
Never mind. I’ll use my phone.
[chuckles] I don’t even know where you’re from. Uh…
What’s the best airport for you to fly into?
You know what? I can handle all of this.
Come on. You shouldn’t be alone right now.
Let me help you with this.
No, I’m fine. Thank you.
You don’t have to be fine.
Something terrible just happened. Let me help you.
You don’t need to help me with this. We barely know each other.
Okay. But, um, we just…
Uh, yes, we just had sex.
But that doesn’t mean we know each other.
You’re right. I’m sorry.
Honestly, I-I think you should just go.
Let me just…
[Pam and Whitney chatter indistinctly]
If you are game for an adventure, I have tickets to this show at BAM.
[Robbie] What happened?
Uh, my-my… my dad’s in a coma.
They don’t, they don’t know what’s gonna happen, but I-I should… [sniffles]
I should get home as soon as possible.
Yeah, okay. Um, how can I help?
[clears throat] Uh, what about a-a plane ticket?
‘Cause I-I can arrange that.
Just-just show me where your, um, show me where your computer is and your credit card and-and I-I’ll just book you a ticket.
And you can pack. Or, uh, do you want to take a shower?
Are you-you hungry? ‘Cause I could, I could get something and…
That-that is very sweet of you, thank you.
Come here. I’m so sorry.
I’m sorry, did I, did I do something wrong?
No, no, not at all. I just, uh… I am gonna hop in the shower, actually.
That’s a, that’s a good idea.
Good, good. Just show me where your computer is and I’ll-I’ll book you a ticket.
[chuckles] I will handle that.
We just had this great night tonight and now this terrible thing has happened, so just let me help you somehow, please.
I… I had a great time tonight.
And you’re right, something… really terrible did just happen.
So what would be most helpful to me is if you would just leave.
♪ I tried soft and well ♪
♪ But I never have found out ♪
♪ Why I can’t seem to shake this feeling ♪
♪ It’s like every time a light hits the stage ♪
♪ I can’t see past my own eyes ♪
♪ Oh, if I can’t find it in the subtle parts ♪
♪ Could I find it in the silence? ♪
♪ Oh, break my silence ♪
♪ How do I get past knowing that things once done ♪
♪ Are forever done? ♪
♪ Oh, my breath just draws in and out ♪
♪ Doesn’t seem to be catching on ♪
♪ If I can’t find it in the subtle parts ♪
♪ Could I find it in the silence? ♪
♪ Oh, break my silence ♪
♪ And break through to me… ♪
[Whitney] Oh, hey, Terrence and Hailey are at Milk & Hops with some friends. Shall we?
Uh, maybe one very handsome gay guy we all think you should meet.
Come on, just one drink. We’ll just say hello.
What’s the harm?
Very good. Two drinks.
Are you okay?
Yeah. Yeah, I’m… I’m good.
[Ford] What a perfect fall day.