(Scene opens at a roadside gas station somewhere in Swing State. SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER is inside, balancing his books behind the counter. Enter JOE SIX-PACK, who heads straight for the refrigerated section.)
SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER: Hello, stranger. I’m Small-Business Owner. I’m concerned about the rising cost of health insurance for my employees. Welcome to my small business.
JOE SIX-PACK: Thanks. I’m Joe Six-Pack. True to my name, I’d like to purchase six cans of domestic beer from your small business, and I’d like them to be connected by a subdivided plastic holder. I’m sort of racist, though no one ever comes out and directly says this.
SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER: That’ll be $5.99. I may or may not get a tax break under either Barack Obama’s or John McCain’s tax plan.
JOE SIX-PACK: Put it on my tab. I’ll pay for this beer with easy credit, which will eventually lead to an economic crisis.
(The door dings as it opens, and HOCKEY MOM enters.)
HOCKEY MOM: Oh, jeez, how are ya? I’m Hockey Mom. I’m like Soccer Mom, only colder. I’m up in arms over the risin’ cost of gas.
JOE SIX-PACK: I, too, am feeling squeezed at the pump.
SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER: Enjoy your six-pack. My entrepreneurial spirit is the backbone of the American economy.
JOE SIX-PACK: Thank you. I’ll spend the rest of the afternoon watching football and drinking with my friends, Working-Class White, Nascar Dad, and Those Without College Degrees. I do not care for the gays.
(JOE SIX-PACK exits.)
HOCKEY MOM: How much do I owe ya for gas? I’m bitter about Hillary Clinton losing.
SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER: Seven thousand six hundred and twenty dollars.
HOCKEY MOM: Oh, jeez. Thankfully, I married Those Making Over $100,000 Per Year.
(HOCKEY MOM pays. We hear another ding as SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER opens the door for HOCKEY MOM on her way out. Outside, LATTE-SIPPING CROWD pulls up but doesn’t get out of the car. SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER remains in the doorway.)
LATTE-SIPPING CROWD: Excuse me, sir? I drive a hybrid automobile, so I don’t need gas at this time. However, I wish to purchase a fair-trade latte from your independent, locally owned business. In exchange, I’ll blog about this experience on my Mac.
SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER: I’m sorry, sir, but we only have Sanka. You’ll have to go to the Starbucks up the street.
LATTE-SIPPING CROWD: That’s OK. I was really just being ironic. Or was I? No, I was. Sarah Palin is less intelligent than my 3-year-old son, Windward.
(LATTE-SIPPING CROWD speeds off. SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER returns to the counter and resumes balancing his books with a concerned look on his face. Shortly, JOE THE PLUMBER emerges from the bathroom holding a diamond-encrusted plunger and a basin wrench made of solid gold.)
JOE THE PLUMBER: Hello, fellow small-business owner. I’m Joe the Plumber, and I’ve successfully plumbed your bathroom. I’m relevant to national politics for some reason.
SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER: What do I owe you?
JOE THE PLUMBER: More than $250,000 a year. Despite my name and salary, I’m neither a Mafia boss nor a porn star.
(JOE THE PLUMBER exits the store and drives off in a van made of Stradivarius violins and children’s laughter. Shortly, we hear a ding as ELDERLY JEWISH VOTER enters the store.)
SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER: Welcome to my small business, which I own.
ELDERLY JEWISH VOTER: Because I’m elderly, I’d like to purchase a case of Tab from your small business.
SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER: Because this is Middle America, I have the unfashionable beverage that you seek.
ELDERLY JEWISH VOTER: Because I’m Jewish, I must first ask whether you’re a secret Muslim or Jimmy Carter before I patronize your small business.
SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER: I’m neither. Your total is $8.99. Will that be credit or debit?
ELDERLY JEWISH VOTER: That’s a tough decision. I’m not sure. I don’t like the credit-card company’s policies, but my credit card is old and I’m familiar with it. My debit card promises big benefits, but it’s fairly new and has a funny name.
SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER: You need to make a decision. Which one will it be?
ELDERLY JEWISH VOTER: I’m still undecided. Why are there people watching me through the store windows?
SMALL-BUSINESS OWNER: Those are the evangelicals. They live next door and work for the credit-card company. They’re watching you to see what you choose. Now, just slide the card, select either credit or debit, type in your four-digit pin, and select “Yes” when it asks you “Is this amount OK?”
(The EVANGELICALS begin throwing stones at the windows in an effort to distract ELDERLY JEWISH VOTER.)
ELDERLY JEWISH VOTER: This is too complicated! I’m confused by your machines! Also, your gas prices are through the roof!
(Just then, MEDIA ELITE pulls up to the station in an armored fighting vehicle, but does not emerge from the hatch.)
MEDIA ELITE: (Through the vehicle’s loudspeaker.) Hello, I’m Media Elite. I would help, but I can’t risk being hit with those stones. Instead, I’ll stay here, 150 percent in the tank.
NARRATOR: How will they vote? How will it end? Find out November 4 at theaters everywhere.