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Tiny Play #4/100 (Late & Stupid!)

January 30, 2010


  1. This was due yesterday and it’s terrible.  I am aware of these facts.  I’d like to squeal “but I’m scrambling to get props done for a show that opens next week!!”  Which is true.  However, it is equally true that I had most of this piece in storage for weeks, just waiting for an ending.  And that I seriously thought it was going to be a contender for the best thing I’d written, maybe ever, certainly on this project.  Yeah, I don’t even know.  I funnel my narcissism into weird shit some days.
  2. Those who ever spent any time in my off-campus Sackville domicile will recognize doorwall.  This is kind of an homage to doorwall.  Those who ever read the “RULES” we had posted on doorwall will recall that love of doorwall was prohibited.  My argument against that is either a) I don’t live there any more and can do as I please or b) can an homage this shitty really be considered an act of love?  (Choose one or mix and match.)
  3. While this is a piece of shit, I still have a weird fondness for these characters.  They might show up again later, if I figure them out a bit more.  Alternatively, if you find them doing anything less boring than this, tell me about it — preferably in response play (or prose or poem) format.  It can be like the opposite of fanfiction.

SETTING: An apartment in what was once a large family residence.  There is an arm chair against a blocked-up door frame.

AT RISE: O sits in the arm chair.  There is knitting in her lap, but she has obviously been more preoccupied with listening at the undoor.

O: The girlfriends of men can be so shrill and unpleasant.

X emerges from the bathroom, magazine in hand.

X: And pretty.

O: Quite pretty.

X: How thick do you think the bathroom wall is?

O: Not thick.

X: While I was peeing I heard one of them clipping her nails.

O: Which one?

X: She didn’t say anything.

O: Fingers or toes?

X: All of them.

O: You sat there peeing for twenty clips?

X: I had a magazine.

Holds it up.

Have you seen this?

O takes the magazine; reads where X is pointing.

It’s like a revolution only nothing is ever going to change.

O appears to be reading thoughtfully but really

O: I bet it was the blonde.

X: Why do you say that?

O: She looks like someone with thick toenails.

X: And fingernails.

O: Especially fingernails.

X: When have you examined her nails?

O: I don’t know.

Yes she does.

Their housewarming.  She was wearing those open-toed shoes, and she painted all of them that opalescent white, upstairs and down.  They just had a very sturdy look to them.  Maybe she eats a lot of jello.

X: Maybe it’s all part of a plan.  Extra-strength toenails as a new high-density self-insulating one hundred per cent sustainable building material.

O: Eww!  Don’t get any ideas, Ms. Eco-tect.  If I catch you fishing my nails out of the wastebasket I am out that door so fast.

X: Don’t flatter yourself.

Taking O’s hand, examining and displaying.

Your nails are far too delicate.

O: They are?

X: Absolutely.  Never mind through the bathroom wall; I can’t hear you clipping your nails from the other side of our bed.

O: I do not clip my nails in bed.

X: Off the side of the bed, into the waste basket.

O: Fine.


I think you’re wrong, though.  I think it’s the metal bits coming together that makes the sound.  I don’t think it makes any difference how thick the nails are.

X: Then you can’t tell that it was the blonde.

O: I know.  I think I’m wrong.

X: It could have been the Boyfriend, even.

O: No.

X: It could have.  I heard him over there at breakfast.  It’s not like boy clips sound any different than girl clips.

O: He left.  While you were in the bathroom.  Listening to clips.

X: Oh.  Well I guess that does eliminate him as a suspect.

O: Mm.  I think he may be gone for good.

X: What?

O: They were fighting.  His voice is no good for fighting.  Hers went up and up and up — you know how it goes?

X: The brunette.  Yeah.  It does that.

O: Oh, I think the blonde does too.  She just doesn’t bring boys home long enough to get shrill with them.

O giggles.

X: Oh, please, no slut-bating.

O: I’m not bating!  I didn’t even say slut!  Christ!  I can respect that we have differing opinions on the use of certain words, but I don’t think I should have you on my back when I haven’t even used said word in front of you since you made it clear you have a / problem with

X: Well you implied that there was / something wrong with

O: I wasn’t implying anything; I was merely stating an observation on patterns of behaviour!  You’re always hearing value judgements I’m not making!

X: No, I just…fine.  I’m the slut-bater.  There’s a secret firey slut-bating ring in my mind, and sluts go there to get secretly mentally bated by me.  Constantly.  Carry on.

O: You only have a problem with that word because you’ve never been one.

X: A bater?

O: A slut.  If you do it, and you’re good at it, who cares what word gets pinned on it?  Besides, it just sounds good.  Slut.  Sss-ll-ut.

X: How is it you’re the girl I see fit to take home to mother?

O: Girl?  I’m twenty-eight.  Who’s the bad feminist now?

X: Fine — nix Girl, replace with Slut.

O: So glad you’ve come around.  Anyhow.  It was a scary fight, because he’s just not built for that.  Fighting with girls.  Her voice goes up and he can’t catch hardly any of it on the way down and everything out of his mouth is just total non-sequitur garbage.  I think maybe being a man in a fight with a woman is like being drunk and trying to convince an equally drunk cop that you aren’t drunk.

X: And everybody is watching.

O: Or listening through the wall that used to be a door.

X: Or clipping their toenails in the bathroom.

O: So it was the blonde.

X: I suppose it was.


If you are interested in using this script, in whole or in part, for any reason, please a) credit me (Emmet Forsythe) as the author, and b) let me know about it, including links to any video or audio recordings you may make.

Contact emilythesecond (at) gmail (dot) com if you wanna tell me somethin’ too special for comments.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. rubyben permalink
    January 30, 2010 9:56 pm

    1. tags: argument slut. win.
    2. My Lit. teacher hasd a rule about no apologising for your work. + I’m not gonna say don’t apologise because it is sort of a familiar Emmety trait that I have come to like, but maybe put the apology at the bottom so we can have our own opinion first? Maybe I am being a jerk. I am in a jerky mode.
    3. If I am being a jerk, just know that I lurve you anyway.

  2. January 31, 2010 12:47 am

    this is teh cool.

  3. Xander permalink
    February 5, 2010 2:55 am

    “I think maybe being a man in a fight with a woman is like being drunk and trying to convince an equally drunk cop that you aren’t drunk.”

    this is an awesome sentence!

  4. evan permalink
    February 5, 2010 3:13 pm

    No, I like this.

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