Beathead and B.B. Bunker
A Cable T.V. Series by John Presco
Bobby ‘Badass’ Bunker has worked at the Welfare and Food Stamps office for twenty years. He is famous for denying women with hungry children the benefits – they rightfully deserve! Black women could not wrap their mind around the fact Bobbly is a Black Man. They thought they were a shoe-in.
One day, BB’s daughter calls from college and informs her father she got married and is coming to Boston so he can meet his son-in-law.
“Why didn’t you tell me you were going to get married?”
“Well, Daddy, you are NEVER FOR ANYTHING. You are AGAINST EVERYTHING. Right?”
“You got a point. But, you shouldn’t have denied me my right to – SAY NO!”
When Dolores came in the door with a White Guy who looked like a Deadhead, BB – flipped!”
“Oh no! No! No! NO! I told you if you every married a White Progressive Liberal Beatnik – I would disown you! You can’t TRUST THEM!”
“Daddy! Dylan is not what you think. He’s quite old fashioned. He’s got the complete collection of The Mary Tylor Moore Show. His grandmother was Mary’s make-up person! “
“Jesus F. Christ! I hate that liberal woman. Nancy Pelosi wrote half of the scripts. That show is the encyclopedia of Liberal Progressiveness. Mary was – FOR EVERYTHING! She was a Liberal She-Devil bent on destroying Family Values and The Church!”
“How dare you! My grandmother dated James Brooks who wrote most of that show!”
“Ah – Jeez! It can talk!”
“Oh my God! Is that a Confederate flag on the wall? I thought I was marrying into a black family!”
“You married into a – Republican Family – Beathead!”
“Hey! Who’s hungry? How about a rack of ribs, candied yams, collard greens, cornbread, and fruit Jello salad?”
“Great! While I’m in the Kitchen, you can explain to Dylan why you accepted the Hitler Youth dagger from The Brotherhood of Eternal Loathing. I still don’t get it.”
“There! Over on that wall.”
“Jeez! Did you have to tell him/”
“Daddy! He was going to spot it – any second!”
“That’s not what I mean. He might report us to the FBI!”
“Us? US! I don’t live here. I don’t live in no Crazy House!”
“You can trust me…….Dad!”
“For some people, the divides have grown so deep and so personal that they have felt compelled to pick up and move from one America to the other.”
James Lawrence Brooks was born on May 9, 1940, in the Brooklyn borough of New York City, and raised in North Bergen, New Jersey. His parents, Dorothy Helen (née Sheinheit) and Edward M. Brooks, were both salespeople (his mother sold children’s clothes; his father furniture). The Brooks family was Jewish; Edward Brooks changed his surname from Bernstein and claimed to be Irish. Brooks’s father abandoned his mother when he found out she was pregnant with him, and lost contact with his son when Brooks was twelve. During the pregnancy, Brooks’ father sent his wife a postcard stating that “If it’s a boy, name him Jim.” His mother died when he was 22. He has described his early life as “tough” with a “broken home, [and him being] poor and sort of lonely, that sort of stuff”, later adding: “My father was sort of in-and-out and my mother worked long hours, so there was no choice but for me to be alone in the apartment a lot.” He has an older sister, Diane, who helped look after him as a child and to whom he dedicated As Good as It Gets.
Brooks spent much of his childhood “surviving” and reading numerous comedic and scripted works, as well as writing; he sent comedic short stories out to publishers, and occasionally got positive responses, although none were published, and he did not believe he could make a career as a writer. Brooks attended Weehawken High School, but was not a high achiever. He was on his high school newspaper team and frequently secured interviews with celebrities, including Louis Armstrong. He lists some of his influences as Sid Caesar, Jack Benny, Lenny Bruce, Mike Nichols and Elaine May, as well as writers Paddy Chayefsky and F. Scott Fitzgerald.