PRIEST OF SALES
page: subject to change
|Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1998, Dorian Scott Cole
INT. TRAVIS' OFFICE - DAY
Travis is on the phone to his secretary making flightarrangements.
OK, and Jennifer, please make sure
this time they don't put me behind
a bulkhead on the plane. There is
no place to put a briefcase, so
I can't work.
Kenrick exits and closes the door. Travis throws his pen
at the door.
So, where are you off to?
Tampa. I'm going to go study the
town and see if it is ripe for our
corporate clubs, maybe make some
Sounds good. I wondered when you
would hit Florida, it isn't just
retirees down there.
Have you given any thought to
adding more sales people?
Yes, I have ads in some regional
papers. And, I was thinking maybe
about Mark. He needs a change,
and it might be right for him.
Hmmm. You know, we've had one go
around with him and it wasn't good.
I gave Mark a nice plumb and I've
let him suck on it as long as he
Is he in exile?
His potential is.... limited.
Travis, you need to start thinking
a little more shrewdly. We don't
want all these people hanging
around forever, they just aren't
productive. And some old prune
face like me doesn't really attract
the younger crowd - the ones that
buy all of our products. So if they
are like you and have a lot of
potential, we move them up. If not,
they're a dime a dozen and we move
them out. Give them way too much to
do and they leave. So give a little
thought to the company you keep.
INT. GINA'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT
Gina is watching a TV program and fighting to stay awake.
Gina opens the door. Travis is standing there. She gives
him an incredulous look and lets him in.
Travis throws a pillow at her, rises and paces.
Travis, you shouldn't be here.
I know. I need someone to talk to.
Sure. Have a seat.
I had a meeting with Kenrick today.
He told me basically that most of
the staff out there is a dime a
dozen and we're supposed to overwork
them until they leave.
I've heard that before. That
doesn't mean I do it.
I thought about that, Gina. But
you know, that's the way Kenrick
makes us work it. He controls the
number of employees and the new
assignments. So he is the one who
does the overworking. We're just
the people in the middle who make
OK, but why has this come up now?
It didn't make any difference
I talked to Mark yesterday. I told
him I could use him for expansion.
I told Kenrick today I might want
to use Mark. He said forget it,
Mark was one of the dime a dozen
people. This stinks.
Does Mark want the job?
Probably not. But what if he does?
Find a reason to tell him no.
Gina, I'm not a saint, I can lie,
but now I see the importance of
this to Mark's life. Mark can do
it. But Kenrick has this
artificial system that weeds him
out. I feel like instead of selling
a dishwasher, I'm selling a marketing
concept. It's an illusion, It won't
actually wash the dishes.
We're mixed up in people's lives.
Who do we think we are messing up
people's lives like that?
What do you want me to say, we're
all creeps? Our entire system is
going to fall down around our ears
because we're selective and not
everyone can make it? You're
letting Mark get to you. Life is
worth the effort, and Mark and you
and everyone else find ways to deal
Travis rises, shaking his head.
Damn it, Gina. How can we put
people through this - overworking
people and destroying their dreams.
Is this what managers do? What are
we the supreme seducers? The
Temple prostitutes that keep people
serving the business gods?
Travis sees the pain in Gina's eyes.
(Starts in whisper, grows vehement)
Yeah. Yeah, sometimes this is what
we do. No matter how much it hurts
us or how much we think it is false
and unrealistic, we keep pumping
them up. It doesn't make any
difference if we're the nicest
people and the best managers, we
still have this job to do. Because
somehow, aside from right or wrong
or any other concern, we've got to
keep things going so we all survive.
Are we seducers? We're
sales people times ten. No matter
what happens, we seduce our people
into running the race every day,
giving everything they have, even if
they're exhausted. And when all is
said and done, the people who work
for us wouldn't have it any other
Gina gives him a perplexed look.
I don't know, Gina, this really
opened my eyes. I keep asking
myself, what am I doing to make it
If we're not part of the cure, we're
part of the problem.
Travis heads for the door.
Thanks, Travis! I haven't been
depressed for months. You're not
going to leave me like this - Where
do you think you're going?
I'm going to grab a handful of
friends and go out and get stinking
drunk and bemoan our fates and
commiserate until dawn. Then I'll
put my smile back on and go do my
INT. BEAU MONDE HEADQUARTERS MEETING ROOM - DAY
Irrational acts are the only way to
handle irrational demands.
Wait, I'm coming with you.
The room is full of staff members, including Kenrick,
Margo, Mark, Tracy, Troy, Gina, and Travis. Travis is speaking to the group.
The audience claps as Travis takes his seat. Kenrick standsbefore
So for the foreseeable future, I'm
going to spend most of my time in
the air, and I hope to have every
major city in the U.S. hit by one
of our sales people within the next
twelve months. If you know of
anyone who wants a sales job, please
send them my way.
Margo switches on a projector and a picture of the backbone
appears on screen.
Speaking for us all, we wish you
the best of luck, Travis. You have
certainly done a magnificent job.
Our last speaker, and certainly not
the least, is our long time
physician and adviser, and sure to
be for many years, Margo Beauchesne.
The audience claps again as Margo steps before them.
My topic today is very related to
beauty, and is one very close to me
personally. It's directed at the
people I work with. I'm talking
about stress and the specific
effects of overworking.
A picture of a body, and cells multiplying, comes on.
The process of wear begins early.
For example, each bone in the spine
is separated by cushions, or discs,
which allow the spine to turn and to
absorb shocks. However, this tissue
isn't fed by blood vessels and has
to regenerate from the fluid in the
This system isn't especially
effective, and for most of us we
lose more cells than we gain by
around age twenty.
SHOT: Kenrick smiling.
At age thirty five, our entire body
has become like our spine. For one
reason or another, none of our cells
are replaced as fast as they are
SHOT: Kenrick's smile fades.
Fortunately we all have terrific
support systems in today's world
that allow us to take full
advantage of our body's healthy
years. Vitamins, exercise, rest,
sex, companionship and proper
medical attention all help.
But if we get too caught up in
our jobs and forget these things,
We pay a price for the richness of
a full life. Right now, today, is
the time, especially for you, Travis,
to make sure our jobs don't take
too much from us.
An image appears on screen showing mechanical things in
motion and corresponding body sites. A fraying cable used to lift a block
is shown next to nerve and muscle fibers. A water hose with mineral deposits
clogging it, next to a beating heart and blood vessels. Old, dirty oil
draining from a machine, next to it a cell.
Mark is leaning forward with great interest. On the screen
the fraying cable becomes magnified and rocks back and forth over a pulley.
Stress hastens the dying process.
It simply means we overwork our
physical bodies, either through
repeated activity, lack of rest, or
too much mental stimulation.
The symptoms show up as physical
problems that won't go away, and
depression, lack of energy, and even
death. Let me show you.
The cable frays apart and the block falls with a resounding
thud. Mark jumps. Kenrick notes Mark's reaction and the other's intent
interest. He turns on the lights and turns off the projector.
All mechanical things wear and break
from use. Our muscles and nerves
are no different. Overuse without
allowing the body time to repair,
causes muscles to thin or to tunnel.
Mental stress causes muscles to stay
tight, or spasmed, causing the same
Even nerve fibers can fray from
too much flexing in one position.
They can become raw and irritated,
or actually break strands.
Well, that's certainly interesting,
Margo, and thanks for your
It's almost over, just another
picture or two.
Well, we all certainly know how to
take care of ourselves. And you
know, it's the quality of life that
is important, not the quantity. So
we get a little tired occasionally,
but it's worth the effort.
Kenrick walks to the exit and turns off the lights, but instead
of going out, he slides into the background. Someone turns the projector
on. The water hose expands to fill the screen, showing the passage through
it nearly completely restricted with mineral deposits.
I would like to see this. I'm new
This is really interesting. I can
give it a couple of minutes.
I wouldn't mind seeing it myself.
Well, I'm outvoted. Margo, please
continue with my blessing. I'll
hold down the fort.
The hose breaks with a loud crack, allowing water to flow
everywhere. Mark winces.
Water contains minerals that
sediment out and grow like
stalactites inside pipes. As
a result, the pipe becomes
clogged and will no longer pass
The blood vessels in our bodies
have a similar problem. Certain
minerals cling to the walls of the
arteries and plug them.
Some things accelerate this. For
example: high blood pressure, which
can come from stress from living a
full life, tends to cause roughness
in the arteries that accelerates
These deposits not only make it
harder for the body to replenish
itself, it also makes the vessels
brittle and much more easily broken.
The screen changes to a machine with dirty oil, side by side
with a cell.
When this happens, it is usually
in the brain and causes a stroke.
The screen goes blank.
The oil in a machine we can change,
so it gets fresh oil to make it
run smoothly. But the individual
cells of our body, we are powerless
to clean. Over time, our cells
succumb to buildups from by-products
of cell activity. This includes
formaldehyde, a preservative, which
stops cell activity.
INT. TRAVIS' OFFICE - DAY
We are all victims, to some extent,
of stress. It's part of living,
and it takes its toll on all of us.
But sometimes it hits some harder
than others, burning us out
physically and mentally. As your
physician, I can help.
If you are having continuous
trouble fighting viruses, or if you
have continuous muscle problems, or
ulcers and heartburn, or ringing in
the ears, joint pain, or are losing
your feeling sensation, don't let it
destroy the quality of your life.
Come and see me before it's too late.
Beauty starts on the inside.
Travis is returning from the meeting and is putting away
notes. Mark appears in the doorway.
Mark studies him for a moment, then turns bitter.
Mark, hi! Come on in.
Do you have time for a word with me?
I've been thinking over what you
said, and you're right. I've been
blaming others instead of taking
control of my own life. I think
it's time for a change. I would
like to help with the expansion.
There's no really easy way to tell
you this. I already put your name
forward in a staff meeting. The
consensus was, right now is not the
time to put you on the road. So
maybe in a few months.
But now is the time! I know it.
Travis, don't put me out to pasture,
I can do the work and I need the
challenge. Margo's presentation
made me see what all this negative
stress is doing to me, and it's all
because of the situation I've kept
myself in. Travis, give me a chance.
Mark, this is tearing me up. I
really want to, but I can't. What
we need to see is just a few months
of consistent performance out there
and I think I can swing it.
Mark quickly leaves Travis' office.
Well, I'm not going to beg.
Next: 10 disintegration
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