By G. Robert Frazier
INT. GOBBLER’S KNOB – BEDROOM – DAY
Small. Quaint. Cozy. Home sweet home.
PHYLLIS (O.S.): Up and at ’em, Phil.
PHIL rolls over in bed. Mumbles something into his pillow.
PHYLLIS (O.S.): It’s your big day!
Phil kicks off the sheets, struggles into a sitting position. Lets his eyes adjust to the darkness of the room.
He scratches the whiskers under his chin. Stretches, yawns. Catches a whiff of something.
PHIL: Is that alfalfa?
PHYLLIS (O.S.): You know it is.
Phil hops out of bed, shuffles into the…
…where PHYLLIS sets a steaming bowl on the table.
PHYLLIS: Eat up. You can’t go out there on an empty stomach.
Phil sits, plays with his food.
PHIL: This isn’t going to help. My stomach is already in knots.
PHYLLIS: Same thing every year.
PHIL: I hate crowds.
PHYLLIS: Imagine them naked.
She ambles into the bedroom, comes out with a pair of pants.
PHYLLIS: Put these on.
Phil does. Phyllis puts her finger between the waistband.
PHYLLIS: A little snug, but it’ll do. You keep eating like you do and I’ll have to let them out next year.
PHIL: If there is a next year.
PHYLLIS: One hundred thirty-five years now and you think they’ll quit.
PHIL: Well, what if I get it wrong?
PHYLLIS: You’re never wrong. That’s why they picked you in the first place. This is a great honor.
PHIL: I don’t even know why it matters.
PHYLLIS: It’s tradition.
PHIL: Their tradition.
PHYLLIS: Ours too. Now, quit your fussing and go get ready. It’s almost time.
Phil hobbles into the…
Splashes cool water on his face. Blow dries it. Trims a few whiskers. Brushes his oversized teeth.
Phyllis appears at his side, gives him a tender kiss.
PHYLLIS: I’m so proud of you. Now get your jacket on. It’s time.
Phil nods, heads into the…
Dons his jacket, zipping it all the way up to his thick neck.
PHIL: How do I look?
PHYLLIS: Like a living legend.
Phil turns to the door. Hesitates.
PHYLLIS: Now or never, dear.
Phil nods, turns the knob. Pulls the door open a crack.
PHYLLIS: Oh, wait, wait! Don’t forget these!
She hands him a pair of thick-framed sunglasses.
PHYLLIS: Just in case.
Phil slips them on, opens the door wider. Steps forward as…
…a pair of oversized hands inside metal gauntlets reach into their abode and gently grab him by the middle.
EXT. GOBBLER’S KNOB – DAY
Phil, still in the grasp of the gloved hands, is elevated above his tiny tree stump of a home.
Raucous APPLAUSE and CHEERS sound from a throng of people around him. Media cameras and cellphones record everything.
Phil squints behind his sunglasses. The sun bright and high in the sky. He dares a look at the ground. At his shadow.
A MAN in a bowler hat holding him sets him down.
Phil scurries on all fours back inside his tree stump.
INT. GOBBLER’S KNOB – DAY
PHIL: I’m going back to bed. Phyllis, wake me up in six weeks.
- * * *
AUTHOR’S NOTE: Thanks for reading Phil’s Big Day. I hope you enjoyed this little Groundhog Day adventure. I wrote this short screenplay last year as part of a WriterDuet Challenge and had a lot of fun doing so. – Gary.
Cute story from the groundhog’s POV?
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