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Short-A Janitor Looks at Forty
by John Belciglio (jbelciglio@carolina.rr.com)

Rated: PG-13   Genre: Drama   User Review: **

This screenplay is copyrighted to its author. All rights reserved. This screenplay may not be used or reproduced without the express written permission of the author.


You see a classroom full of students, all are in silence. A
minute goes by and then you hear the bell go off, and the
everyone gets up, happy to be out, and heads for the
door....eacept one. he waits til everyone's gone, gets up,
and heads for the cafeteria, where the janitor's working.
the janitor looks at him, then gives him a gross hand towel.
Let's start cleaning the kitchen.
jump to a an hour later, the janitor's mopping the floor,
while tommy's wiping he tables.
Let's take a break for a second.
Tommy puts the towel away and sits in one of the chairs. The
janitor does the same and heads for the vending machines.
What do you want to drink?
      (not amused)
What do you want to drink?
Just give me a soda.
The janitor gets a soda for Tommy and a water for himself.
Water? That's it?
Nothings better for you than H2O.
Your body is mainly composed of
it, you should pick up the habit
of drinking it.
Tommy drinks his soda and the janitor drinks his water.


So what you do this time?
Tommy gets this annoyed look on his face.
I put a hole through the wall near
the guys restroom on the third
So that was you.
more annoyed look.
This time it wasn't on purpose. I
was just leaning on the wall and
it caved in.
Alright, alright. It's just that
it'll take me forever for me to
fill in a hole that size.
Tommy's had it.
Oh, shut the hell up.
Watch your mouth. Mr. Carter might
not be watching but the good lord
always is.
Tommy just shakes his head and goes back to drinking his
soda. After a few seconds of silence, Tommy seems to be deep
in thought.
Something on your mind?
Tommy, snapping out of his thoughts.
No, nothing.
Yes there is. Come on what ya
No, its stupid.


I'd rather be talking about
something stupid than nothing at
all. Now come on, tell me whats on
your mind.
I was just thinking about
the...the meaning of life, you
know, why am i here.
That ain't stupid.
But there's no point in thinking
about it. It's not like we'll ever
find out. Hell, the only ones that
have an actual purpose on this
planet are the rich ones.
Riches don't do a thing.
Well, how do you know?
I was rich once.
Yeah right.
I'm serious.
Yeah right.
Swear to God.
...You are serious.
Wow...how'd you make your money?


I was a musician. I was a regular
Ray Charles..without the
blindness...you know, when I first
started out, I wanted to write
songs...that meant
something...that people got
into..Of course, money tends to
change those things. Those days
tend to be sort of a blur. I do
remember the days when I decided
that I wasn't dong anyone any
good. Thank god, I got before i
killed mysef. You know, there's
this old song called baby grand
that, everytime I listen to it, I
remember what its like. It was
done by Ray Charles, and...oh i
forget the other one...
Billy Joel
The janitor looks at Tommy, surprised. Tommy realizes what
he just said, and get extremely nervous, until he sees the
janitor's smile. Tommy smiles too.
Anyway, I got out as soon as I
could. I started searching.
For what?
Same as you, the meaning of my
life. Well, more specifically, I
was looking to some meaning to MY
life. I went everywhere, churches,
synagogues, homeless shelters,
even went into a few Buddhist
temples. Nothing made me feel
better. They didn't teach nothin,
didn't give me nothin. I finally
said, screw this, I want a little
life somewhere peaceful and quiet.
I wanted to get away from all of
this. That's when I remembered
this one trip I went with my
parents to. We went to Italy.
Youve been to Italy?


Yep, as a little kid, My parents
and I went on this two week trip,
and we went all over Italy. But
the one place that I truly fell in
love with was this little place
tucked away, called Siena.
Beautiful town. I remember that's
where I wanted to spent the rest
of my life. I had the whole thing
planned out. You see, my daddy
always took me on his sailboat. He
taught me how to sail and taught
me how to get from point A to
point B. So I got this beautiful
sailboat for the trip. Hell, I
already made a down-payment on
this little place in the city, I
filled all the forms out for dual
The Janitor's smile slowly fades away.
I was this close to leaving.
tommy's smile fades as well.
Then I had my first stroke. (he
takes out his medication). The
doctor was real nice, even when he
told me I couldn't even make it
there on a plane, much less a
boat. Had to sell the boat, throw
out the papers, coldn't get my
money back on the house. I had no
money left. My cousin, he was
living here at the time. Said I
could live with him, so I moved
here, got this job, been here ever
a few seconds of silence.
I'm sorry, man.
Don't be. I've had a great life.
I've been all over this great
country, ocean to ocean. I've had
my riches. Yeah, I was


                       JANITOR (cont'd)
dissapointed that I couldn't go to
Italy, but I won't spend all day
whining. You can't go around
regretting the past. You have to
let life go on, because if you
spend all day, wishing your life
turned out differently, what's the
point of living in the first
Tommy nods, agreeing with what the janitor said.
Well, we should get back to work.
Tommy nods, and gets back to work.
You know what? Why don't you get
outta here. I'll finish up here.
You serious?
Yeah, I'll be fine. You go to Your
mom. She's probably worried.
Thanks, man.
Tommy gets up to leave, but before he leaves He turns to the
janitor, smiles, waves, and leaves.
Nice kid.
The janitor gets to work.
It slowly fades with Baby Grand playing.


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From Josh Pearson Date 5/1/2007 **
what's the purpose of your story? what are you trying to tell? add a little more depth and you'll be alright. also, how is this man going to italy and his dad driving him around in a sailboat as a little kid? it doesn't sound like he came from an affulent background that could provide such an experience, at least it would be odd and out of character for such a thing.

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