SIMPLE THINGS | By Tito William Gonzalez



Empty shelves line the grocery store, with a sense of subtle panic in the air.

JORDAN, a mid-20’s entrepreneur in fashionable business attire, seemingly out of place in this store, scans the shelves for his items.


Excuse me, I can’t find any mushrooms. Are they in stock?

A STOCKER, male 30’s, adjacent to Jordan peaks their attention towards him


If there’s any left it’ll be in the produce section. You’d want to hurry though.



Jordan walks away and continues his shopping. The difficulty to find his grocery items increases as almost everything is seemingly sold out. He walks over to the produce and frowns as the mushrooms are gone. He moves on to his other items

Holding a small cart with just enough items for a simple savory dinner, Jordan steps into the checkout where A FEMALE CASHIER is seen scanning the items of those ahead. Her eyes reflect a deep tiredness and she stifles a yawn. 

Out of the corner of his eye, Jordan catches a glimpse of the TV newscast from the TV displayed next to the big sign hanging from the ceiling reading SOLAR FLARE SALE: EVERYTHING 95% OFF. A NEWSCASTER is shown speaking and Jordan narrows his hearing to listen to the broadcast.


….and those at home are advised to stay put till an official announcement has been released. This unprecedented solar flare is estimated to reach extreme temperatures in the afternoon hours, with experts saying the aftermath of the flare could be disastrous. Again, we advise everyone to stay at home….

Looking down, Jordan glances at his watch. 12:46 P.M. He doesn’t have much time left, much like everyone else in the store. The line rushes and Jordan arrives at the CASHIER. The cashier looks up.

A beat. 


(sluggishly) Debit or credit?


Just cash


 Don’t worry about bagging

The CASHIER scans the items while Jordan opens up his wallet. He notices and takes a moment to admire a photo in his wallet, portraying him next to a woman, his wife. He smiles as if it’s been years since he’s last seen her. 


Your total is 46.15

Jordan fiddles through and pulls out of his wallet a hefty wad of cash, all that he had and way more than the cost, and lays it on the counter. 

The cashier is expressionless 


That should cover it 

(reaching over the counter)


Jordan gathers all the items in his arms and rushes out of the store.