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By Rory L. Aronsky | July 11, 2006

Why do two college students, a law major and a theater major, sitting on a park bench matter at all? Why, for a one-joke premise of course in which the punchline only appears after the waiting. For the law major with the broken arm, trying to unpack his lunch is a challenge, and the constant crinkling of wrappers is enough to make the theater major visibly annoyed without him seeing it. We know what she wants. She wishes he would find another bench so she can read her book without the noise of the wrinkled paper bag getting in the way. Until he has trouble with the soda can he’s trying to open, they have nothing to say to each other.

Director Todd Lampe and Lisa Wardell make this unexpected meeting amusing because of Wardell’s theater major trying not to yell at him, which seems possible given all the noise, but there she sits, breathing heavy to show annoyance, but not speaking. What’s the use of making trouble if you don’t know the person? Lampe relies more on the actors than any dialogue that could be spoken, except for the end, which is where the sole joke comes in after they introduce themselves to each other. And through the names they give, this chance meeting is certainly one of the most unusual over the ones we’ve seen in movies over many decades.

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