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  • Writer's picturePeter K F Cheung SBS

Can't Wait


  1. FADE IN.


  2. Act 1


  3. INT. SLEEPING ROOM - MORNING


  4. Working on his laptop at a corner, PETER takes a call.

  5. SOMEONE (From phone): Did you take the DVD player to me to repair? It's unrepairable! Come and collect it back! If not, I'll dump it as rubbish!


  6. PETER: (To phone): But I might not be able to come and collect it back today. Can you hold on to it for a day or two?

  7. After some silence, Peter ends the call.


  8. PETER (V.O.): The repairer is quite agitated. But I'd better things to do today.


  9. Peter checks his phone diary.


  10. PETER (V.O.)(Cont'd): A possible lunch appointment...driving my wife to somewhere after that....a webinar from 3-5pm... and the repairer's stall closes before 6.pm.


  11. Pausing.


  12. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Perhaps, I'll go tomorrow.


  13. Act 2


  14. INT. SLEEPING ROOM - LATER


  15. Peter checks the phone time.


  16. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): It's already sometime after 1.pm. The possible lunch appointment is off.


  17. EXT. ROADS - AFTERNOON


  18. Peter drives and thinks at the same time.


  19. PETER (V.O.): I took the partially out-of-order DVD player to the repairer a fortnight ago. The repairer was confident that he could fix it as he had fixed the same model before.


  20. Pausing.


  21. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): I didn't bargain with him for the repair cost at all. And the repairer meant to let me have it back the next day.


  22. Pausing.


  23. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): I was actually near his stall the next day in the late afternoon, preparing to collect it back, as I couldn't wait.


  24. MONTAGE OF PETER'S CHILDREN WATCHING DVDS


  25. A. Sitting on a sofa, Peter (50s) watches his CHILDREN inserting DVD disks into a DVD player to enjoy their favorite audio-visuals.


  26. B. Sitting at a dining table, Peter (60s) watches his grown-up children watching video clips on hand-held device.


  27. RETURN TO PRESENT


  28. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): And recently, I managed to fix a less sophisticated DVD player by myself. But I couldn't fix this sophisticated one.


  29. Pausing.


  30. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Not getting his call timely, I didn't go to his stall to check it out. The repair cost should be a good incentive for him to repair it as quickly as he can.


  31. Pausing.


  32. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Now, I know even an experienced repairer can't fix it. What's the point for me to pick up the useless hardware, having done the best endeavour to salvage it.


  33. Pausing.


  34. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Further, no money is outstanding. I've paid the repairer the agreed inspection fee in advance.


  35. Pausing.


  36. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Isn't it my objective to declutter?


  37. Parking his car at a passing place, Peter makes a call.


  38. PETER (To phone): Hi, we spoke this morning. I'm not coming back to collect the player. Kindly dump it for me. Incidentally, what was the problem?


  39. REPAIRER: (From phone): The player's rubber belts have melted. I replaced some new ones today but they still don't work. So I called you to let you know.


  40. Pausing.


  41. PETER (V.O.): OMG, he has been trying hard for the past fortnight. I can understand how agitative it can be to accept failure.


  42. Pausing.


  43. PETER (To phone): I see. Thank you for your time and effort. If I've something to repair, I'll bring it to you again.


  44. Peter ends the call as his WIFE gets inside the car.


  45. Act 3


  46. INT. STUDY - LATER


  47. iPad Mini placed on a stand, Peter is attending in webinar.

  48. PETER (V.O.): It's good to learn about the problem of the player and the effort made by the repairer.


  49. Pausing.


  50. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): I think my non-appearance is the best way to resolve repairer's tension and embarrassment. It also helps me declutter useless stuff.


  51. INT. SLEEPING ROOM - NIGHT


  52. In bed, Peter is putting on his eye mask.


  53. PETER (V.O.): The home key of my older iPad Mini has been out of order for quite a while; and I have ordered a spare part from another repairer.


  54. Pausing.


  55. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): The repairer said the spare part should be available in 3 days. Now, 3 days have passed and he still hasn't come back to me.


  56. Pausing.


  57. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Unlike my DVD player which was about 15 years old, my older iPad Mini was made in 2014.


  58. Pausing.


  59. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): While I can't wait to have it fixed now, I still have to wait.


  60. Listening to radio music, Peter sleeps.


  61. FADE OUT.


  62. THE END


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