Day 164: Inhibition Sal

Inhibition Sal
Matt Zurbo

Inhibition Sal stepped up on the edge.
(Little girl standing on the edge of a three foot ledge on the water’s edge, looking down. Three other kids laughing, running and jumping past her, into the water.)

(Girl alone, looking down from edge, other kids in water, watching her, happy.)

It was a big edge!
(Looking down from above girl. Fall goes forever.)

She swayed gently in the breeze, as if she might fall forever.
(Girl looking super small and nervous on the edge of an impossibly big, dam-like wall.)

Inhibition Sal was always worried about that sort of thing.
Would the other kids be mean?
(Girl, falling, scared. Other kids beside her, falling but laughing at her.)

Would they laugh when she danced?

Would they not laugh if she told a joke?
(Girl falling down hard edged hole in water, other kids deadpan, watching.)

Would they not smile if she said hello?

Maybe it was easier to simply not say hello.
(Girl looking down, kids in water all dressed like sharks. More shark fins swimming around them.)

If she built a robot that ran on the cent of flowers, would people not believe it?

Would their lack of belief make it not real? 

Would they call her a fraud?

So she swayed on the edge, wishing she was more confident.
(Close-up of girl looking down, scared.)

That she wasn’t so scared.
(Girl, standing on edge, looking down, the Grim Reaper is standing beside her, looking down, too.)

Inhibition Sal rocked to and fro. This was the moment.
This was character.
This was the stuff she should build a life on.
(Same image as at start. Girl on edge, of only three foot drop into water. Other kids cheering, beckoning her to jump.)

A thousand voices in her head screamed: NO!
Don’t do it!
(Two look-a-likes of girl are standing either side of her, with megaphones, shouting as she looks down.)
What are you, nuts!?

If she fell, would angels fly beside her, laughing?

The devil would wait below!

What if the world fell with her?
(Everybody falling through air. Including teacher, old lady, dog, etc. Girl is looking down, scared. To everyone else it is the everyday.)

What if she was all alone?
(Falling, alone.)

What if she landed with a SPLAT!
(Falling through water as if it is a solid, leaving shape of herself in its surface.)

What if she never landed at all?
(Girl falling. The Earth above her.)

Just fell?
(Girl now a woman, still falling. Stars and stuff behind her.)

And fell?
(Background is still stars. Girl’s skeleton falling.)

But, no, she had said she would DO something!
So, for once, she would DO it!
(Girl looking down, determined. Angry.)

Inhibition Sal felt everybody watching,
her legs go weak,
her stomach fill with butterflies,
(Looking down, butterflies EVERYWHERE!)

And leaned forward past the point of no return,
(Falling forward off edge, hands covering eyes.)

so stopped worrying,
(Falling further forward, holding hands worried in front of chest, but now looking at where she is falling..)
stopped being frightened,

and began to feel free!
(Arms wide, falling head first.)

And fell!
(Kid arms out, flying through the sky.)
Who cared what people thought?

And, as she fell, she realised this story related to her telling stories,

(Free-falling from top of page.)

(Free-falling past middle of page, singing.)

(Free-falling, as if dancing, beneath bottom of page.)

and all sorts of important stuff!
(Blank page, splash of water from below.)

(Girl in water, smiling at reader. Other kids in water around her, wet/grumpy.)



The End

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