The PROTAGONIST walks out to an empty stage. He speaks to the audience.
Evenings in Paris aren't what they used to be.
Light, airy music fades in. Snow falls gently on a blue stage. A pair of LOVERS wander by, staring into imaginary store windows.
On a moonlit evening years ago, lovers held mittened hands, laughing as they shook the snow from their hair, gently spending an unhurried evening.
It keeps snowing, but the LOVERS freeze. The stage is suddenly sepia-toned.
It doesn't snow anymore, and people spend most of their time inside.
The LOVERS unfreeze as the snow stops. They are in a hostile environment, now, and they make a hurried exit without a word to each other.
It's hot now, because it turned out we were right, but it was too late or we were too lazy to do anything about it.
A few disheveled WORKERS come out. They are in wife beaters, or without shirts. They carry milk crates and sit on them. One smokes as they play cards. As they enter, the PROTAGONIST speaks.
The workers sit outside in the daytime, though, because they can't afford anything better. In the daytime, everything is sepia because that's just the color it should be in the heat.
A limo drives by. It stops in front of the workers long enough for someone inside to throw out a cigar. It peels off, revealing that the WORKERS behind it have exited.
The French were always poets.
The stage is suddenly lit in an awkward bright white. A chaise lounge is flown in from above the stage. Two POETS enter, a MAN and a WOMAN. The WOMAN sits in the chaise lounge as the MAN pantomimes talking to her. They both seem bored.
That's the joke, see? The government and the workers call this class that can afford to stay inside the Poets. It's said that they would stay inside and sip brandy for their whole life if they didn't have to step into the alley to smoke a cigar every half-hour.
A SERVANT walks in and fluffs a pillow on the chaise lounge. She exits.
The Poets, not to be outdone, of course, have their own little joke. They call the government the army because the government can only solve problems with guns.
A POLICE SNIPER wanders by, twirling a rifle. The POETS give him a look of disdain. They exit. The chaise lounge is flown off.
It's not hard to see why the poets call the government the army, especially with a police sniper at the end of every avenue, in bulletproof glass cubes with a hole for their gun, covering the street in front of them for any workers looking suspicious.
A WORKER sneaks in. The SNIPER spins and fires at the WORKER, The WORKER is hit in the shoulder. He spins off-balance, turning to face the audience. The SNIPER and the WORKER freeze.
Something had to be done, anyway, what with all the windows that were getting broken.
The WORKER falls dead. The SNIPER whistles a little tune as he exits. A POET wanders by, giving the body a look of disgust.
The poets didn't really care for the workers, but the workers hated the poets. The poets never really understood that the enemy of your enemy is still your friend, even if they're shooting at you. The workers liked progress.
Two STREET-CLEANERS appear. They lift the WORKER and place him in a body bag.
The workers liked progress even when it was sepia-toned outside, and everything inside was fluorescent, and police snipers were using you for target practice.
The STREET-CLEANERS trip. One is angry. He raises his foot to give the bag a kick. They both freeze.
It's hot now, and that makes people sad.
He exits. The curtain falls.