A man, Dave

A dog, Charlie

A woman, Alice

—no dialogue is audible—

The action opens on a bright sunny spring day on a residential street of a bustling city. Music: chipper. People are walking around or driving cars; everyone looks pretty happy to be alive. A couple, with arms linked around the waist, walks past the front door of a house. The door opens and a handsome, mid-30s man walks out with a golden retriever on a leash. This man is Dave. He is manly but friendly and approachable-looking; he wears jeans and sneakers, a sweater, and some sort of sporty zip-up. His dog, Charlie, is adorable. Walking out the door, Dave hangs a right and walks down the street with the dog. When they stop at corners he musses Charlie’s fur. At one corner a young girl tries to pet the dog. She pulls back her hand, giggling, when the dog’s mouth turns to her, but after encouragement from Dave and her mother, she eventually is able to pat gently the dog’s side. She giggles more. Crossing the street, Dave and Charlie enter upon a large park. It is comfortably full of people: young men playing frisbee, women reading on benches, children and parents playing in a playground, a few other people playing with their dogs. The man and his dog walk up to a kiosk on the periphery of the park. Next to it is a stand which advertises hot dogs, ice cream, and lemonade. It is unclear what this stand sells; it looks like a large newspaper stand, but there don’t seem to be newspapers. Dave goes up to the window and exchanges words with the man working inside. We don’t hear what they say, but they appear to know one another. The worker leans out of the window and Charlie jumps his forelegs up so that he can be petted. The gesture seems very familiar. Dave hands the worker some bills and he is handed in return a large bunch of hanging brown chewtoys. Charlie starts barking, bouncing around and wagging his tail, and Dave pets his head roughly but affectionately. Hoisting the large bundle in the air by its bound tails, Dave and Charlie head toward the park. It is at this point that it becomes clear that Dave is holding a large bunch of squirrels. They are alive, unhappy but not overly rambunctious, wiggling around and hanging upside down, bound by their tails. The park they are in is quite large, and Dave and Charlie walk-jog over to an uninhabited area on the far side, smiling at people as they go. Charlie is extremely excited and Dave seems happy, too. Once they have some space, Dave spouts some happy dog-talk to Charlie and Charlie takes off running down the park. Dave pulls a squirrel from the bunch, whips it around by the tail with quick flicks of the wrist and sends it flying into the air towards his bounding dog. Charlie leaps up with glee, catching the squirrel in his teeth. Dave cheers and smiles, patting his thighs as Charlie runs back with his catch in mouth. He drops the squirrel at Dave’s feet, and is given a treat from Dave’s pocket and a pat on the head as reward. Dave picks up from his feet the dead or dying squirrel, gives it another few whips around and sends it sailing into the air for Charlie to retrieve. This time the squirrel takes more of a flyball trajectory, and Charlie runs around in little circles under it waiting to see where it will land. Behind him, we see a pretty young woman sitting on a bench, reading alone. This is Alice. She looks at Charlie with bright eyes, watching him run around. Eventually the squirrel hits the ground and Charlie skids over to it. We see the woman laughing, and we see Dave notice her laughing. Charlie runs back to Dave and drops the squirrel at his feet. He appears to be dead, so Dave picks it up and tosses it aside into some bushes. With a glint in his eye, he squats down and scratches Charlie behind the ears with both hands, petting him in an encouraging manner. Alice notices Dave checking her out, and she tries at least to appear focused on her book. Dave turns to the bundle of squirrels, which is lying beside him, writhing gently but too discombobulated and multi-directional to head off anywhere. Looking at the squirrels, he picks one which is moving a lot more than the others. Reaching for it, it starts squirming wildly. Dave takes it by the tail, spinning it around more gently than the previous squirrel and lobbing it into the air with a wide arc of his arm. The squirrel is sent flying and Charlie rushes off to catch it. It is heading right toward Alice, who looks up from her book with raised eyebrows and then tries to look away coyly. Charlie is at her feet, tail sweeping her legs, waiting for the squirrel to land. But Charlie misses it initially, and the squirrel takes off under Alice’s legs, which she raises instinctively, scared but laughing. Dave jogs over from where he was standing, about fifty yards away, and we see him looking under the bench for the squirrel, petting Charlie and apologizing to the woman, touching her shoulder and ultimately shaking her hand. He introduces himself, and she smiles, and he introduces Charlie, whom she pets nervously. Dave nods toward the park, and the woman smiles, reluctantly, but walks over with Dave, Charlie bounding out ahead of them. When they reach the squirrels, Charlie is trying in vain to poke at them with his nose, but they keep wiggling around. Dave picks up the bunch of squirrels from the ground and offers it to Alice. She recoils, waving her hands in front of her but giggling nonetheless. Dave puts his hand on her shoulder, enticing her to reconsider, and then plucks a smaller squirrel from the bunch. He gives it a few practice whip-arounds and a fake toss, demonstrating before handing it to Alice. She looks skeptical, but up for the challenge. She takes the squirrel, whips it around a few times and lobs it into the air. Charlie takes off after it, a bit leisurely because it doesn’t go too far. But Dave claps and pats her on the back, congratulating her. He offers her another squirrel and she accepts, heartened. She whips it around, practicing while she waits for Charlie to run back. He does, drops the squirrel he has, and she whips the new one into the air and sends it flying. Dave looks legitimately impressed. He gives her an impressed eyebrow-raise-head-nod. Charlie runs back and drops a really mangled, bloody squirrel at their feet. Alice begins to reach for it before realizing how disgusting it looks. She pulls her hand back and backs into Dave, who puts his hands on her upper arms. She turns around, laughing, and then stops abruptly as they share a moment of chemistry-laced eye contact. She looks down, flushing red, and Dave looks at her, smiling and surprised. Charlie runs around them happily. Alice motions away with her head, looking past the park towards a dusky street and looking at her watch. She gestures away. Dave tentatively reaches for his pocket, looking at her questioningly and ultimately pulling a cell phone from his pocket. She nods emphatically and takes the phone from him, presumably entering her phone number. He smiles and looks down at a tail-wagging Charlie, patting him on the head. Alice looks up, Dave looks up. She hands him his phone and starts to turn away, then turns back. They exchange an awkward almost-hug-but-wait-let’s-shake-hands-instead. Smiling, Alice walks away towards the late-afternoon-lit street, turning once to look over her shoulder and smile. Dave is beaming. He squats down and enthusiastically scratches and pets Charlie. There is one more squirrel lying on the ground. Dave picks it up and tosses it into the air for Charlie, who runs after it. The shot freezes on the image of Charlie leaping into the air, back arched, head turned back over his shoulder with squirrel in mouth. Across the screen, the words appear: WHAT A CATCH

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