2011-08-12: Television Is Bad for You
AIR DATE 2011.08.12
Cast: Harry_icon.pngTheodore_icon.pngSimon_icon.pngNicol_icon.png
Location: West Hollywood - Millions of Milkshakes
Synopsis: Intros and reconnections are cut short when an infamous PSA sparks a fresh round of debate.
TELEVISION IS BAD FOR YOU

Harry looks over the menu, seriously debates what she has. After all, milkshakes are a big deal. Deciding on a vanilla shake with Reeses Pieces, Graham crackers and chocolate syrup, she puts the plasticky thing back down on the table and laughs at her companion across the table. "A later shift? Don't you already get out at some ridiculous time like midnight?" Noticing the pamphlet he attempts to hide back into his jeans, the woman raises an eyebrow. "And what's that?"

"The overnight shift is quite pleasant. Fewer live bodies to annoy a person with. This is why I wasn't fond of practicing medicine on the living. I would have turned into Hugh Laurie by now," Teddy says as he grins across the table at Harry. "Hmm? Oh. Just a bit of paper from UCLA. I was considering going for another doctorate. Can't quite decide on which to go for." It also means an overhaul on his scheduling. "I wonder if they'd let me have a go at it online. Classrooms can get quite tedious."

"You are so antisocial." Which is a bit opposite of Harry, who loves to talk to just about everyone and anyone. "And you couldn't be House, you don't have a limp. Though you definitely have the sarcasm to give him a run for his money. You really are pleasant when you're not trying to scare people. Sometimes literally." She hasn't forgotten his latest practical joke attempt. The mention of another doctorate gives her a raised eyebrow. "You'd just like to wallpaper your walls with them, wouldn't you?" She grins. "Good for you, though. If I had the time, I'd go back for something."

The door opens, and another little group of people wander in. Mostly forty- and fifty-somethings, sticking out like a sore thumb. "Yeah, this is the place," the guy in the lead says, and pulls out a sizable wallet— no wonder they let him go first. Meanwhile, Simon - tagging along near the back, looking faintly bored - turns and glances toward Theodore. "Oh, live bodies can be dealt with," he offers. "That's why we have anesthetics." He doesn't have a limp either, which is one good sign at least.

"I am not anti-social. People just sometimes get in the way." Teddy smirks at the woman he's seated with before his expression settles into something more serious and while doing his best House impersonation, he says, "Everybody lies." The serious mien isn't quite pulled off, seeing as he's wearing a shirt emblazoned with '98% Chimp' on it. "What? I wasn't trying to scare, I just thought it'd be funny. You know, do it for a laugh. As for wallpapering, not really. It's more a formality. Like I need a little piece of paper that costs several thousand dollars to prove that I do know of what I speak. Plus I suppose it's because I get a bit bored in my off hour.. Haha!" He glances behind him towards the source of the funny and laughs at Simon's words.

There's a flurry of activity outside as a big, jet black Harley pulls up to the place and parks out in front. The female figure on the motorcycle is dressed in shades of grey and black. Black cargo shorts and a grey top. Her helmet is pulled off to reveal a head full of dark brown hair, ruffling it a bit so it doesn't look that bad. Nicol's boots make a clunk on the pavement and enters the place after the group of older folks. Older because Nicol is only 21.

Stretching as she walks in, her head cocks to the side as she makes her way up to the counter area. Sliding onto a stool, she wheels around before grinning up at one of the waitresses. Many of the employees look over at Nicol as she enters. It would seem as if they know her.

"The usual!" she calls out, but with a laugh before leaving the stool behind and going into the back. Ah, she works there.

As the group wander in, Harry glances over, but keeps her attention mostly focused on her booth buddy. "Yes, but it's never Lupus," she snickers as she folds her hands on the booth in front of her. "What else would a thousand dollars be good for, other than to prove that you can tell other people you know more than them. You can be that guy at parties that says, 'Oh, well, I actually have a doctorate in the subject.'" Once again, with the teasing. At Simon's interjection, she blinks and looks up at the doctor. "At least we don't have to use a leather strap and a hot blade any more!" The ruckus that Nicol makes doesn't go unnoticed either, but the dark haired woman disappears into the back and the scientist focuses again on her companion.

Lots of people who don't know Nicol (yet) turn to get a look at the bike, along with its rider. A few people who do know her turn around, too, well aware of what they're in for. Simon's gaze follows along with bemusement - he's part of the first group, only present because Wallet Guy insisted on treating everyone getting off shift - before turning back and nodding acknowledgment to Theodore. And then pauses for a second, taken by surprise for the second time in as many minutes. "Wait a minute. Harry? What the hell are you doing here? Man, small world, I guess."

"You might be surprised.. when I was in pre-med, well that's a story for another time I suppose," Teddy says as he stops himself before he goes off on a reminiscing tangent. "What? I don't want to brag about it, what if I wanted another job in another field? I might need that expensive piece of paper. Besides, my last degree looks lonely hanging in my loo." He then chuckles, "I did know a chap back at Oxford. He liked to go to smart parties and say, 'Why yes, I am a rocket scientist.' Then he'd flash his diploma. He was a bit of a smart-ass about it.." He trails off and looks back at Simon again when he voices knowing his not-a-date-for-milkshakes, it's-just-as-a-friend companion.

There's a sound of doors opening as Nicol reenters dressed in her uniform and gathering her hair up into a ponytail. Her brown eyes scan the area before she makes her way over to Harry and Theodore's booth. "Heya there, what can I get you guys?" she asks with a tilt of her head and a light smile. She knows how to be professional, or sort of. Since she punched someone in the face at another job, or former job? She needs to check on that, she mentally reminds herself before looking at Harry and Teddy with interest.

Her black boots look kind of odd with the uniform but.. nobody takes Nicol's boots away.. nobody.

Harry is one of those people who doesn't know Nicol yet, but she blinks at Simon, refocuses and then stares. Whoa, what a small world. "Oh! Simon! Wow, hi, yeah, I guess it is. Sorry I didn't recognize you at first. This is really the last place I'd expect to see you. I came up here for work. What are you doing here?" Then, she smiles and gestures to Teddy. "This is Theodore. I went to college with Simon." When Nicol slips in to take their order, she smiles. "Oh, uh, we put in an order just a bit ago. I got a shake with Reeses Pieces, graham crackers and chocolate syrup. What'd you get, Theodore?"

Simon waggles a hand in the air as he answers Harry. "Mmm, same, more or less. Things back home got a little too— familiar, you know?" He's still calling it 'back home', he can't have moved too long ago. A step closer so he can offer Theodore a quick handshake, meanwhile glancing back toward the people he came in with— eh, they're busy debating the difference between vanilla and vanilla bean and Plain White, they'll be at it for a while at this rate.

"Oh uhm, sorry," Teddy says as he tears his attention away from Harry and Simon as Nicol comes over. "Ah, large dairy shake," seeing as non-dairy is an abomination, "With banana, chocolate syrup, walnuts and heavy on the mocha powder.. Please." Yes, it's please with him, along with a smile for the server. Aaaah, so many people needing his attention. So what if it's only three, it's a lot to him! "Ah, pleasure to meet a classmate of Harry's." Criminy, is this where he offers a handshake? He can recite Grey's Anatomy, but that little social cue has gotten away from him. Oh good, Simon takes the lead, so Teddy follows by reciprocating the handshake.

"Huh.. Lisa must not be doing her job.. probably texting her boyfriend again. Thank god this is my last day." The last bit.. maybe she shouldn't have said in front of customers. Okay, scratch that. All of it, but when does Nicol ever really follow the rules? "I'll get right on those milkshakes for you. With dairy." She gives Theodore a pointed look with a grin.

With a short glance at Simon, she turns and her boots take her off to where the delicious treats are made. There's a couple of men sitting around that hoot and holler at her. They must come here often because she just gives them a pained smile and when she thinks nobody is looking.. flips the bird to a loud cheering from the men.

"Assholes."

"Oh, don't worry, we're just chatting, so Lisa's fine. Thank you!" Harry beams at Nicol when she repeats back their order. The hooting and hollering makes the scientist look over her shoulder at the men and roll her eyes. "Pigs," she sighs under her breath. Then, she moves back to the conversation she was just having. "I can understand that. Came to LA for the exciting. And boy ever did I find it." Talking with Simon is starting to bring out her Southern accent a little more strongly, which she doesn't notice - though Theodore might. "Been here long?" With a reassuring smile at Theodore - she was just talking about his antisocial tendencies - she adds, "Theodore works in medicine, too."

"A few months." Simon tries to tone down his accent, just to be contrary. It doesn't work very well, but give him a year or two to assimilate. "I heard, yes— tough line you're in, Theodore, don't sell yourself short. Blood I can deal with, but cold ones all day long? No thanks." Behind him, a couple of teenage girls make sour faces and pick up their stuf to move over to another table. "So what kind of 'exciting' did you wind up with?"

"That's quite alright, if she is, I'm certain it must be an important uhm, conversation," Theodore says to Nicol, even if he's not quite sure if texting does qualify as a conversation. "Oh.. really? I apologize, I don't know if condolences or congratulations are in order, Miss." The hooting and hollering earns a frown from Teddy, who's got half a mind to go over there and give them all a good telling off about proper behavior towards a lady. Even one in arse kicking boots. "Hmm? I what, oh yes, sorry. Forensic pathology to be precise about it. Although I could be a neurologist or a cardiac surgeon if I wanted." Amazing how even with his British accent, he's not sounding snotty about it, just matter of fact.

A few minutes go by before Nicol is twisting out from the back carrying the milkshakes on a tray. As she makes it to the table and utters a 'excuse me' to Simon. Her eyes wander from the female to the male seated. "Here you guys go! Enjo-." Before Nic can finish what she is saying, her ears catch the beginning of that ad.. the one where Van Dallas is advocating for registration.

"Turn that junk off." She says loud enough for one of the waitresses to hear. Nicol glares at the TV screen until it's changed to some other channel. She seems stuck in thought, obviously put in a bad mood after seeing that ad.

"It's the least you can do? As if it's irresponsible to not want the whole world to know that you're not entirely normal."

The young woman puts a hand on her hips and cocks her head to the side as she stands by Simon and the others.

You'll adjust, don't worry. Took me a year or so, though. I'm with the LAPD now, working their CSI. Sometimes it's too much excitement." Bodies, blood, crimes, it does keep Harry's days chock filled with adventure of one sort or another. "Theodore's already thinking of getting another doctorate." She sounds proud of her friend - most likely because she is. At the TV commercial, the scientist takes the milkshake from Nicol and tilts her head just slightly at her very irate reaction to the commercial. "I wouldn't quite say that. Normal is such a loaded term. You can't say what normal is for everyone. I don't think there's anything inherently wrong with getting tested."

Simon shakes his head. "Police, hospital— you end up seeing all the interesting cases. It's something you either have the stomach for, or you don't." Before he can process any more of the career discussion, his attention is drawn in turn to the infamous PSA, and his tone grows another level more sour. "No, there's nothing inherently wrong," he chimes in without missing a beat, "the problem is that they're handling it completely backward. That HIV testing campaign, a year or two back— 'do it for yourself'? That's how they should have done it, not this whole guilt trip thing. 'If you don't do it, then you might as well be eating babies'."

"Thank you Miss," Theodore says before helping himself to a pair of straws, handing off the second to Harry. He too frowns a bit at the ad on the tv, deciding to take great interest and care in removing the paper from his own straw. Bloody PSA on the telly. The whole subject of testing makes him more than a little uncomfortable, not that he's speaking up about it, however. Oh look, frothy, frozen delight in a cup. Sip sip. Slurp. Fortunately, Teddy's saved from faking further enthusiasm for his dessert by his mobile ringing from his pocket. "Bollocks," he mutters as he checks the message. "Hmm. Work calls, terribly sorry Harry, they need me back for a consult. Ah, don't forget, after-hours Doctor Who introduction this weekend if you're still game."

"It's not so much.. I have a problem with the way some people are making it out to seem like not registering is such a bad thing. There are so many things that people don't need to register for. It's in your genetics, you can't help how you were born."

Nicol replies with a sigh, "And then.. there are people like Terry. That mother-." The dark haired woman stops herself and brushes aside a few loose strands of hair. Thinking about Greg Terry makes Nicol's blood boil. "It's worrisome no? The way this is being treated, if we aren't careful, we'll have a whole division of the nation then the world. Two different kinds of people, some parents won't let their children be friends with a Positive. It's a scary thought." It brings to mind the times of segregation and such. "I.. I'm sorry. I didn't mean to get all, ya know." She sounds frustrated but as Theodore makes for an exit. Nicol moves away at the same time without another word.

"I think I missed the part about eating babies," Harry grins at Simon, though she does understand what he's trying to say. "I understand. If they started making it a mandatory thing, then I would be against it. The PSAs are just trying to keep people aware of it. I've definitely seen a few cases where a kid didn't know what was happening and then before they knew it, 'poof' a building is on fire. Knowledge is a good thing." She takes the straw from Theodore and delicately unwraps it, sticking it into her milkshake. "Thank you." With a shake of her head, she attempts to dissuade Nicol's apology. "No apology necessary. It's a divided subject." She notices Theodore's discomfort at the subject, but before she can say anything to change the topic, he stands and moves for the door. "Oh…okay. Don't work too hard! I'll let you know about the weekend. I'd be glad to if I'm not pulled in on a double!" She's going to stay. She's finishing her milkshake.

Simon nods to Nicol as she heads back outside. "That guy? He'd be wearing a white hoo if he was any more obvious about it." Turning his attention back to Harry, he considers a reply— but no, they've basically covered their respective sides of it, and he's not looking for an argument for its own sake. And his colleagues have missed out on the whole thing, just now getting around to noticing that he's drifted away. "Hey, c'mon," Wallet Guy calls out, "am I treating here or not? We've still got schedules to work out." Rolling his eyes, Simon mouths a silent 'excuse me' and heads back toward the group, bracing himself for what's likely to be a much less interesting stretch of conversation.

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