INT. TAXI. EVENING.
Greenwich village, a late summer evening, the sun casts a rosy glow on the neighborhood. A lively street can be seen through the taxi windows.
GREG, 44, a tall bearded man in a sports jacket and nice shoes, sits anxiously in the cab drumming his fingers on his brown leather briefcase. He’s looking through the cab window at the old face of a New York brownstone.
WINONA, coming out of the building, pulling her coat on, she grabs her bag from the side table, adjusts her foot in her heeled shoes, locks the door and walks over to the cab. Her speaking can be heard as she approaches the cab. By the time she gets there she has the air of someone very put together.
She and slides in, her pointy heels jabbing Greg in the calves of his khakis.
WINONA ..and you know I hate when you commit me to these lame ass work parties, and especially on a Tuesday night. I just want to relax, not force conversation with the dipshits you work..
The cab pulls away from the curb.
GREG Honey it’s just a couple drinks.
WINONA And then you spring it on me, last minute, like I’m a blow-up robot doll, perform wifey, perform!
GREG Babe I told you last week. Jane and Kat will be there, it’s gonna be fun and we can leave after a couple drinks.
He reaches for her hand, she pulls it away, rifling through a red planner.
WINONA You didn’t tell me, I write it all down. If you had told me I would…
GREG I did.
WINONA You didn’t.
“Young Americans” by David Bowie plays on the radio. The driver turns it up.
Winona huffs, and stretches out her legs. Her phone rings and she answers.
WINONA Hey Darling, look I don’t have a lot of time right now…… He did? Finally found the balls to ask you then, good for you….
She pulls out a small mirror and start reapplying her lipstick.
Fuckin midweek work shit. I hope they have decent wine this time at least, not that crap ironic jug table wine. I bring a good bottle that gets put in the kitchen somewhere and get a plastic cup of nail polish remover. God, get some class…. Huh? of course, next Sunday? I’ll be there…
Red or white darling?….Alright, take care.
She hangs up her phone. Gets rid of a bit of red lipstick on her upper lip and looks at Greg. Her eyes soften.
WINONA Sorry I’m being an asshole. It’s been a shit time at work since we lost that client and I’m just hungry. You know, a HALT.
Greg slides closer to her, bridging the gap between them. He touches her hand, this time she lets him.
GREG Hey, it’s ok, we’ll get in, get out.
EXT. SIDEWALK. EVENING.
Greg is standing by the passenger side window, speaking with the cab driver; there’s a problem with his card.
Winona walks over the the brownstone the party is in, waiting impatiently for Greg to finish paying.
A few frat boys walk by her on the street, one checks her out and stumbles over to her standing on the curb. He’s got a cigarette behind his ear and colorful jersey with the number 26 on it.
FRAT BOY Got a smoke, lady?
WINONA (looking at his ear) Sorry
She pulls out her phone and starts tapping away with her manicured nails.
The frat kid stands, swaying in place, appraising her menacingly. He looks back at his friends, and then back at her.
FRAT BOY (puffing out his chest) You sure?
He loses his balance, and teeters forward into her, pushing her against the wall, and stumbling backwards away. She sways on her heel and regains her composure.
WINONA (pushing him off)
Greg looks over at the commotion, thanks the cab driver, and runs over to his wife.
FRAT BOY (swaying and belligerent) Chill out trick, you’re not hot enough to pull off that tone.
Greg gets between them, Winona grows livid.
WINONA What the fu-!
GREG Hey, chill out, buddy, chill out.
He grabs Winona by the arm and leads her to the door. Greg punches the number of their friends apartment into the keypad. The drunk pulls a face at them and his buddies laugh. He gets a light from his friend and walks away smoking.
Before the pair gets buzzed in, Winona glares at Greg,then walks quickly to the elevator, hitting the ’UP’ button over and over, she waits for Greg to get near her. When he does she begins her tirade.
WINONA Buddy! Buddy! He’s your fucking buddy? What the fuck was that, you are supposed to protect me! Fucking mild-mannered people pleasing ass kisser. I’m surprised you didn’t shake his hand, Jesus Christ…
They step into the elevator, Winona still ranting at Greg, who looks at the ceiling.
The doors close…
…and open on the fifth floor. Winona is furiously looking inside of her purse for a tube of lipstick, still railing at him.
WINONA ….your judgement. I hitched my wagon to the wrong guy, clearly. Jesus, stand up for something.
She quickly gets out, walks briskly to the door. Greg waits a beat in the elevator the doors start to close, he looks at the buttons on the wall. (Deciding whether to go in, or leave his wife there alone)
She looks at him and he stops the closing elevator door with a hand and makes his way to her.
WINONA Fucking coward.
Winona opens the door wide open and strides in.
WINONA Hey darlings! I brought wine! You will not believe what some asshole just said to me…
Greg walks slowly in behind her, closing the door after himself.
INT. APARTMENT. LATE EVENING.
An under furnished apartment, flowers still in plastic wrapping on the windowsill. There are about 20 attendees, milling around, drinking, eating finger sandwiches from plates. Most are standing around the living room, a few sit on folding chairs, some at a table. Various bottles of alcohol on the kitchen bar.
Greg gets himself a beer, Winona with a cup of wine in hand, talks to a friend.
Greg sitting at a table, his friends around him laughing. He looks to Winona, who is standing by the bar, grabbing the muscles of a bulky guy, she glances at Greg.
WINONA Now this here is a real man. (To the bulky guy) I’m sure you’d protect me.
She takes a sloppy drink from her cup, drips some red wine on the sofa cover. She’s got lipstick on her teeth.
Greg walks gently up to her, and reaches out his hand so as to help her up.
GREG It was just a drunk asshole, babe. I think we should get going.. Long day to-
Winona ignores his hand, and averts her eyes. She turns to her friend sitting on the arm of the sofa.
WINONA What happened to men? Like grow a pair, be a fuckin man! Chop some fuckin wood and fix shit!(turns to face Greg) I’ve had it with this sad-sack no- balls bullshit. Fucking coward, wants to be a BRO instead of protecting his own WIFE…
Greg reaches for her arm and grabs her above the elbow.
GREG Babe, let’s go…
WINONA What the fuck?
She shrugs off his arm.
WINONA Now you’re the big strong man? You’re gonna mansplain this shit to me? Tell me what MY reality is? You don’t GET what HAPPENED TO ME! You think I need a MAN to tell ME what happened? FUCK YOU!
She stumbles up to face him, he reaches to take her drink out of her hands. She sways on her heel, and looks up at him, a demonic smile on her face.
WINONA Oh, you want to do this here?
She throws her drink in his face, the red wine covers him like blood, and pushes him a few times, riling him up.
He gets fed up and pushes her away, finally bursting at the seams. She is swept backwards onto a big armchair.
Everyone in the room goes quiet only smooth jazz and her frigid peals of laughter underscore their violent exchange.
The people in the room start to buzz around, some shouting at him, others getting between them, a few women running to Winona’s side and chirping, asking her if she’s alright.
WINONA Big boy! Strong boy!
She pitches forward, gives Greg an icy smile, grabs her bag and storms out.
The remainder of the guests start to fuss around him, a few people angry, some try to laugh it off. Winona’s friend is snarling at him.
Greg looks around for an exit, trying to get away from all of the people, and spots the balcony. He makes his way towards it, some people try to block his way, but he zones them out.
He walks out onto the balcony alone, sits on one of the metal stools, and fishes a cigarette out of one of the plants. He lights it with some matches lying near the planter.
He looks down as a cab pulls up and idles on the curb.
The BULKY MAN Winona was talking to earlier comes out and stands next to him, leaning against the railing.
He looks at Greg, sighs.
THE BULKY MAN Kitty got claws, huh?
Winona walks out of the building, and opens the door to the cab.
WINONA COMING OR NOT?
Greg takes another drag of his cigarette.
INT. CAB. NIGHT.
Winona sits in the cab, clicking away on her phone. She gives the cab driver an address.
WINONA Hey, buddy.
Greg snaps his head up from against the window, he looks at her.
WINONA Pepperoni or Hawaiian?
Greg sighs, leans his head back against the window.