Adam Westbrook
2 min readAug 29, 2017




A large, official office: in one part of the room, a big oak desk overlooked by a large framed photograph of the president. In the other, an arrangement of plush leather sofas surrounding a coffee table.

This is where we find SENATOR COLLINS (late 50s) and his chief of staff MICHAEL (30s) huddled over a notepad.

MICHAEL: We have 6 minutes sir.

COLLINS: I know, I know! Don’t rush me.

Collins whispers through lines on his notepad, before lifting his pen to scribe the final line.

COLLINS (CONT’D): …and I hope myself and my family can move on from this quickly. Thank you, no further questions etc etc.

MICHAEL: That sounds like you’re saying your family needs to get over it, sir.

COLLINS: Well, they do don’t they? Everyone just needs to get over this.

MICHAEL: Five minutes. We should bring Connie in.

COLLINS: Excellent, yes.

Michael marches to the door and ushers in CONNIE (50s): she appears frail and meek on first pass, her eyes are red and she grasps a tissue in her hand.

MICHAEL: Sorry to have kept you waiting Mrs Collins.

COLLINS (Standing and buttoning up jacket): Alright park yourself here Connie, you’re my test audience.

Connie flashes a look to Michael but is past resisting. Collins meanwhile is standing as if he were addressing a real audience.

COLLINS (CONT’D) (Reading from his notepad):
Ladies and gentlemen thank you for coming out here today. This is just a short statement on the stories that have come out in the press in recent days. For thirty years I have served this community, first as a lawyer, then a district attorney, and now as your elected representative in the senate. I love this job, but it takes its toll. There is stress. And sometimes temptations. Recently…for the last three years I have given into that temptation and today I am here to apologise. I owe an apology to one person in particular…you…the people of this great state who I have let down so badly. I hope myself and my family can move on from this quickly. Thank you, no further questions etc etc.

A beat.

CONNIE: Are you fucking serious?

MICHAEL: We felt a short statement was best, Mrs Collins -

CONNIE: I hope my apology is as well rehearsed, whenever you get around to saying it.

Connie rises and walks towards the door, past the large oak desk. Collins takes her arm.

CONNIE (CONT’D): You want me to stand next to you while you read that? No way. Good luck, you asshole.

COLLINS: Don’t you dare leave.

MICHAEL: One minute to go, sir.

COLLINS: I know! Don’t you realise if I don’t shut this down this could harm my chances at the White House?

The camera has pulled back to reveal the photograph of the President between Connie and Collins.

CONNIE: I wouldn’t worry dear, it sounds like you’ve both got a lot in common.

Connie exits, leaving a dumbfounded Collins staring at the empty space. Michael appears in frame behind him.

MICHAEL: We shouldn’t keep them waiting, sir.



Adam Westbrook

Video artist working at The New York Times. I write a weekly newsletter about visual storytelling and creativity.