STILL WORKSHOPPING THE TITLE OF THIS SEGMENT
The scene cuts to a hallway in the Enterprise Center. The Anglo Luchador, dressed in khaki slacks, sneakers, his lucha mask, and a custom t-shirt that says “Blood Levels: Still A Quart Low,” ambles aimlessly, looking at the propaganda posters featuring Ivan Stanislav plastered on every wall, leaving almost no clearance for any other thing. Posters are attached over photos celebrating the St. Louis Blues’ Stanley Cup win, signs indicating which rooms were which, and even over fire evacuation plans. He groans and rolls his eyes.
TAL: What a humble guy.
He turns his eyes forward again only to recoil back in surprise at something obstructing his path.
Voice: Yeah, man, it’s pretty wild. We’ve been trying to get our Glue propaganda up, Glueaganda if you will, and let me tell you: it’s an uphill battle. I think it’s ‘cause Ivan’s real tall so we can’t get the high spots.
The camera turns around slowly to reveal a contingent of the Glueminati standing right in front of him. Namely, Joe Fontaine carrying a stack of papers, Sid Phillips, a cardboard cutout of Cecilworth Farthington, and a chinchilla in a little cage being carried by Sid. It has a tiny beret.
TAL: Joe. Sid. Ceece. …Chinchilla?
Joe Fontaine: Yo, Angie, what’s up?
Sid Phillips: Hey.
Joe Fontaine: So, hey, since you’re here, maybe you could be a little handy and help us get some of these posters up?
He gestures with the papers in his hands.
Joe Fontaine: Feels like every time we get some of these up, more Ivan posters appear over the top of them, and, well… I don’t want to call it out as rude or anything, Ivan’s gonna Ivan and all that, but he and Alex could at least let us do us a big solid and let us have our own space.
The Luchador looks up and down, mainly at the cardboard cutout of the Five Star Champion and the furry rodent, with a perplexed look shining through the eye- and mouthholes of his mask.
TAL: I get the cardboard thing here. But the beret-wearing chinchilla? Is that your mascot? Wouldn’t a glue-related mascot be, I don’t know, a horse?
Joe Fontaine: Don’t be ridiculous. Do you know how hard it is to get a horse into a sports arena without an Enemigo or someone noticing? I’d get stopped at the door and then I have to deal with all of those big Enemigo stares because they don’t really say anything, and it’s very awkward for everyone involved. Plus, not as portable or as adorable.
He pauses, and then gestures at the chinchilla.
Joe Fontaine: Anyway, this is FLAMBERGE. Not a mascot.
TAL: The Enemigos didn’t stop Cancer Jiles from… you know what forget about it, that’s clearly not FLAMBERGE unless magic is real which would open a whole other can of worms.
The Luchador looks at both Joe and Sid waiting for the former to say something in reply before realizing whatever Joe was going to say in that moment would probably flummox him even more.
TAL: Anyway, I’d hate to see what you’d think Hayes was, but as much as I would love to help you guys rid the arena of all these eyesores, why do you think I would help you put up your propaganda when I’m wrestling the guy your cardboard cutout there represents in two weeks?
Joe Fontaine: I’unno. Just giving you something to do before Farthy glues you.
Sid Phillips: Phrasing.
Joe Fontaine: Uh, I mean before Farthy removes all of your bones and then puts them back in your body in alphabetical order like the helpful samaritan he is? He’s very much about keeping things organized, I’ve learned. Real neat freak, that one. I mean, I can relate, we have the same understanding of the importance of charts and graphs, so that’s why we get along so well as glue buddies. Glue friends. Part of the Gluelliance. Hm. Need to workshop that one.
If you look closely at the Luchador at this point in time, you can see steam slowly start to emanate from his ears.
TAL: I don’t think skeletons work that way, Joe. Besides, Ceece isn’t the only guy who knows how to do submission holds. Like, you know lucha libre is based on submissions and counter-wrestling too, right?
Again, asking Joe Fontaine a question eludes him as a good idea in that moment, and he quickly realizes his folly.
TAL: Of course you do. Forget I even asked. Where is Ceece anyway? Doing financier things? Balancing books, itemizing expenses, hiding things from the IRS, things of that nature?
Joe Fontaine: A bit too busy to have this talk with you, it turns out! He’s doing important glue things. Uh, most of those involve staring at his cell phone and occasionally cracking a smile.
Sid Phillips: We drew the short straw.
Joe Fontaine: We all drew the short straw except Hayes and Farthy.
Sid Phillips: Really weird how we only got one straw between the two of us, in retrospect.
Joe Fontaine: Anyway, Angie, sorry that you don’t understand how skeletons work in the new Glue era. Gluera. I’m still workshopping that one.
Sid can be seen shaking his head, but his exasperation goes ignored.
Joe Fontaine: But hey, plenty of people around here have gotten used to their skulls being around the pancreal region. Or maybe it’d be closer to the kneecap? I don’t know. Skeletons are weird. I mean, hidden inside all of us is a skeleton, and that’s pretty messed up when you think about it.
The Luchador reaches out both his hands as if to say “stop.”
TAL: Alright, Joe, I get it, skull in pancreas, glue puns, Ceece is too up his own ass to talk to me in person, cool. I’m just here to do some administrative stuff and see what various people who have done me wrong in the last few weeks have to say about why they decided to beat me up after I got out of a hell battle with a guy who has a stick of dynamite where his brain should be. It’s fine. IT’S FINE.
The Luchador realizes he shouldn’t really blow his top in the presence of the minions of his next opponent, especially one whose job is POWERBOMBS. He breathes in deeply.
TAL: Anyway, good chat, Sid, hope your future is enriched with powerbombs as long as I’m from safe watching distance. Joe, uh…
Joe Fontaine (interrupting): Anyway, sorry to cut this short! We gotta go. Opening ceremonies and all that.
He taps Sid on the chest.
Joe Fontaine: C’mon, Sid. Lesgo.
He walks off, leaving Sid the unenviable task of picking up a chinchilla and a cardboard standee and following beside him.
Sid Phillips (off-screen): Can we talk for a minute about how fucked up Cecilworth’s understanding of skeletons is?
The Luchador looks them past before turning his attention back to the walls littered with Ivan Stanislav propaganda.
TAL: Look I know this is far from a wrestling show for kids, but did they HAVE to give him that big a bulge? It’s unsightly.
The Luchador walks off as the camera cuts to another part of the arena.