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Dr Archeville

[PSA Vignette] Slick: "Just Say No!"

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30th December 2010

 

“Just say noâ€

Slick looked the picture of health.

Whilst Slick actually was superhumanly robust (at least normally), it was the look that was important today. He was filming a public service announcement warning the kids of drugs.

A knock came on his dressing room door. “5 minutes to filming, errr… Mr…err… Slick†came the muffled voice of the crewman. For now, he was quite alone, having politely shown out the quite needless hair and makeup artists.

He practiced for a moment in front of the mirror. With some effort, he could limit the oil when changing, at least on his face, and that was what they wanted. What little was left could be air-brushed out with fancy computer technology, so he was told. Nothing wrong with trying to do your best “naturally†was his view.

Dressed in unnaturally smart “street†wear (the sociologists and educational experts had deemed this the best way to connect with the “youthâ€) Slick strode confidently towards the camera crew. This was the first time he had done public speaking on this scale, if one could indeed call it public speaking. He wasn’t short on confidence, and he had plenty of experience of life under his belt, so he greeted this new experience with more excitement than anxiety.

He wasn’t particularly enamoured with the street wear. In his experience, the more one tried to connect with teenagers as teenagers, the more one made a fool of oneself. However, he hadn’t made much of an argument. After all, what was he going to wear? a suit? The best bet might have been to wear nothing at all. Sex sells, so he had heard from the numerous advertising agents he had to deal with over the years. They were probably right, too.

He looked into the blazing studio lights as the countdown began, giving a smile and a thumbs up to the crew that he could hardly see.

“Kids… Just say no!†came the booming intro.

Cue Slick! Roll Autocue!

“Hi kids, my name is Slick. You may know me from my crime-fighting escapades across Freedom City. I am here to tell you, honestly and frankly, about drugsâ€.

“You may know people, or even have friends, that think drugs are cool and can make you cool too. Maybe somebody you know even takes drugs, and tells you how good it makes them feel, or how confident or how full of energy. “

“But I am here to tell you that to be healthy, happy, and cool, you don’t need drugs. I never took drugs and that’s why I am still in fighting form today. But what would happen if I did?â€

Slicks face started to turn more wan, hollow, and drawn as he spoke. His eyes became bloodshot and bags appeared under his eyes. His hair become thin and broken, and his face broke out in broken blood vessels and spots.

“I wouldn’t be healthy or happy at all. I would start to get irritable, angry, and unwell. Definitely NOT cool. All I could think about would be the drugs, taking more and more. I would forget about my friends, my family, my life, everything but drugs. “

By the end of the talk his face looked more like a grinning skull with skin stretched over it than an actual human face.

“I would probably turn to crime, and if lucky get arrested and put in prison. If I was unlucky, I wouldn’t be alive to tell the tale!â€

He paused, letting the impact of his horrible face seep in.

“So kids, if somebody comes up to you, telling you that drugs are cool, and you think you want to try. Remember what even one taste can do to you. Remember… Drugs aren’t cool!â€

He gave a horrible skull-like grin to the zooming camera to emphasise the point.

It seemed to be effective, some of the crew looked rather perturbed by his face. “Cut. Nice work Mr… Slick†said the director. “May have to edit the last shot to get it through the censors, but I should say that will go down nicely, get the message across that kind of thing. Gotta keep our kids off the drugs, keep our streets clean. No place for drugs in this society. “

He paused to light a cigarette. “That’s a wrap folk, back to the bar for a celebratory brew!†he proclaimed as the crew started to pack up.

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