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The Golden Rules: Pride

[Click.]

[A VHS tape whirs.]

[Play.]

[Many Years Ago.]

[Children cheer enthusiastically.]

[They all sit on a colorful mat of the alphabet, clapping their hands together as Felix stands on the stage.]

“Welcome one and all to Felix Foley’s funhouse!”

[The kids cheer.]

“On the next few episodes of the show, we’re going to be talking about The Golden Rules.”

[Yay!]

“Our first golden rule is about Pride, children. Pride costs us more than hunger, thirst or cold.

[Felix smiles.]

“What this means is very important. All sorts of challenges and parts of life will be difficult. You’ll need to know how to navigate these tricky situations but letting your pride get the best of you will cost you more than anything else. Pride is being conscious of your own dignity. It’s being proud of what you’ve accomplished. Should you let it get between you and other things, it can be tremendously unhelpful.”

[Pause.]

[Felix Foley sits with a remote control.]

“You’re a proud man, Tom. Can I call you that?” [I like it.] “I can tell that about you. From the moment you realized that Teddy O’Toole had made Drewitt immortal, it touched you on a different level.”

“A level I recognize as pride.”

“See, you’re the kind of supernatural being that prides himself on the work he does. You’re not the a-typical nine-to-five kind of guy. You’re the work on evenings and weekends kind of guy. You’re the whatever it takes to get the job done kind of guy.”

[Foley smiles.]

“I can admire that.” [To a point.] “And now that Drewitt is immortal, you find yourself unable to do your job the way you’d like it done. You can’t ferry him. The job that you took such great pride in is unable to be completed.”

“That makes you mad.”

[Felix eyebrows raise.]

“What you can’t see is that your pride will cost you more than anything else. Drewitt is harmless. He’s a victim if anything. You’re so proud of what you’ve accomplished and the job that you do that you can’t see him for what he truly is.”

“And in the end, that’ll cost you more than hunger, thirst or cold.” 

[Foley forwards on the video tape.]

[Click.]

[Play.]

[Felix now stands on the stage with Happy Harry in hand, talking to the children.]

“And if you let your pride get the best of you and follow it into the darkest recesses of your mind, you’ll miss out on all kinds of great things. You’ll end up in a place you don’t recognize, with people you don’t know, and with anger or hatred in your heart that you just can’t replace.”

“When that happens, children – there’s only one place left to go.”

Down.

Because pride cometh before the fall.”         

[Click.]

[Pause.]

“Harry’s right, Tom.”

“And that cell is a mighty big place for a fall, don’t you think?”

Felix Foley