Day 247: The Best Garbo in the World

The Best Garbo in the World
Matt Zurbo


(Many years in the future)
(Two kids from 2219AD, with futuristic clothes, one on hover board, one wearing a motorised hopping boot.)

“Did you know that’s Phillip – the oldest garbo in the world?”
“Him? A garbage collector? I heard about them in history!”
(Kids discussing, one pointing with thumb to old man -Phillip- sitting on a porch.)

(Small kid-version of Phillip wearing toga/rags and sandals, straining, dragging a pice of cloth with garbage on it.)

Phillip started as a boy, in ancient Greece, when the Emperor declared that all garbage had to be dragged at least one mile from Rome.
(Dumping rubbish into stinking pit!)

Some say he cleaned up dinosaur poo, too.
(Running with shovel full of poo from T-Rex.)
But that was probably his great granddad, or something.

By the time medieval England came around (1700AD) the size of London was a real problem.

Garbage lead to disease and rats and stench.
(Phillip sitting in stinky garbage piles on main street.)
People were dying of the black plague.

Phillip was a teenager then. He would double up, earning extra money carrying the dead.
(As described.)
“I’d rather be playing football!” he’d always say.

It wasn’t science, like inventing Frankenstein monster, or discovering other countries, or walking on the moon, but people like Phillip were saving millions and millions of lives.
(Line up of Caesar, Aristotle, and explorer, a Medieval musician, astronaut, harp player, and Phillip the garbo.)

Phillip lost his job for a while when they invented crematoriums. Places where the King ordered people to take their garbage and burn it!
(Boss of crematorium pointing for Phillip to leave as others bring garbage to smoking chimney.)

During this time, Phillip made a living collecting left over coal powder, from the coal plant, in tin bins.
‘They became known as dust bins!” he said.

But everybody near the garbage fires was getting sick from the soot!
“Oh, so NOW you need me!” scoffed Phillip.
(People covering their faces, using primitive face masks, crawling through soot to ask Phillip for help.)

Phillip had to lift tonnes and tonnes of garbage every day.
(Into horse drawn cart.)

It would dribble all over him!
(Clenching teeth, cringing, as ooze dribbles from dustbin help overhead.)

Kids would tease him all the time.
(Kids running alongside now older Phillip.)

No, Phillip never retaliated, I swear!
(Kids faces being splattered with rotten tomatoes and fish skeletons, and apple cores.)

Besides, by now, with all that lifting, Phillip was one of the strongest people there ever was!
“Look at him go!”
(Old man and Bobby policeman, and handful of dumbfounded kids watching Phillip work down the street, throwing three bins at a time.)

(Even if, thanks to the garbage, he got sick a lot, and many of his friends died.)
(Sitting on stool, with thermometer in mouth, red nose, bag of ice on head, feet in small barrel of warm water. Piles of garbage behind him, with rats on them and people complaining to him.)

Still, he soldiered on…!
(Leaning, with huge bags of garbage over his shoulders, into hard, dark, rain.)

Rain or shine!
(Hot sun, throwing 20 bags at once up into cart while everybody hangs onto poles, etc, melting in heat.)

Phillip even had two little kids!
Rag and Tag!
(Phillip, now with a belly and stubble on him, flexing biceps, with kid sitting on one, and other at his feet holding garbage bin. Dog peeing on his leg.)

Then, in the early 20th century, they invented garbage trucks!
And way more people!
Which meant more rubbish!
(Phillip running after garbage truck, throwing dozens of bags of rubbish into rear scoop. Rag and Tag running after him.)

He really had to move now!
(Phillip, stressed, a dozen arms throwing, a kid either side, looking shocked.)

Phillip was the best garbo in the world!
Adults turned their noses, but kids would always look up to him!
(Phillip, smiling as he pours contents of bin into truck scoop, surrounded by kids walking alongside him.)

“Like they look up to pirates!” Phillip would say.
(Phillip hanging out from scoop rail, like pirate, as truck drives through water. Rag holding pirate flag, sail on top of truck, etc…)

Garbage trucks also meant garbage wars!
(Two garbage crews on their trucks clashing over the one bin.)

Or so Phillip said.
(Phillip talking while operating the barbie.)

Unfortunately, on the whole, garbage was now mostly taken from lanes.
“Unseen, unloved!” Phillip moaned. “Boo-hoo!”

Heard, yet not seen, garbos became like smelly ghosts of the backstreets!

But if he ever went on strike for better pay…!
(Phillip and kids standing there. Huge piles of garbage behind them, everybody screaming and pointing at him.)
“No thanks,” said Rag.
“Who’d be a garbo!” Tag moaned.
“It’s what we do,” Phillip would say.

Then, at the turn of the century, they invented automated garbage trucks!
“They took my job!”
(Phillip pointing in frustration at giant truck/machine monster pouring garbage into mouth.)

So, the best garbo in the world had to get a job in the tip!
“No more open roads for me.”
What a drag.
(Phillip, older, working in tip. Two excavators being operated by Rag and Tag.)

Finally, in the mid 21st century, they invented shrinking rays.
(Futuristic-dressed, clean garbage men using shrinking rays on garbage. Old Phillip watching.)

And recycle guns!
(Futuristic garbage men pointing ray gun at plastic bottles, etc, turning it into a fountain, with cherub. In background, tip has ‘CLOSED’ sign on it, as tip boss pointing for dejected Phillip to leave.)

And people finally learned to stop using so much GARBAGE!
(Futuristic person finger delicately pinching thumb as they daintily drop TINY apple core into huge, empty bin.)

“So this old man was once the world’s greatest garbo!?”
“Saved millions! Kept cities from being buried in filth!”
“You’re exaggerating!”
(Two futuristic kids from the start shouting/arguing with each other, old Phillip sitting on porch behind them.)

(Kids looking up, dumbfounded, as two flying/hovering garbage barges, steered by robots, crash into each other.)

“Wah, there’s too much to shrink!”
(Street and kids chest deep in garbage. Garbage on their heads, too. Phillip in background, in ‘exit, stage left’, pose.)

(Double page spread of old Phillip throwing dozens and dozens of garbage bags back up onto floating barge. Kids in awe.)

“One of the planet’s most unsung heroes…!”
“For sure!”
(Old Phillip back to sitting on porch, slight grin, two or three flies bussing around him.)


The End.  




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