"All the time I'm not writing I feel like a criminal." -Fran Lebowitz

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Play due tomorrow

I've been toying with writing something along these lines for awhile. Since I'm alone this Christmas, and Christmas is the time for reflection and derivative homages to Christmas works of the past, I'm gonna buy some Jameson, drink it in moderation, and pull an all-nighter, writing this play tonight.


(BILL, 47, sits in the living room watching football on television. The TV is muted, however; Taylor Swift plays softly on the stereo. Bill wears an L.A. Kings hoodie and cargo shorts. He eats white cheddar popcorn straight out of a bag. He drinks Jameson Irish Whiskey out of a 7-Eleven coffee cup. Three cats (gray WALTER, orange LOUIS CK, and black VICKY) mill about. Pause. Suddenly! WHOOSH! A FLASH of BRIGHT LIGHT. A loud POP! A BOY (17 years old) appears in the living room. He wears khakis, a blue Oxford, a red knit tie (poorly knotted), and an ill-fitting blue sportcoat. He looks at BILL.)
BOY: Jesus Christ.
BILL: Jesus Christ!
BOY: ...not as fat as I thought, I guess.
BOY: ...still fat, though. Jesus Christ.
BILL: Jesus Christ!
(The BOY loosens his tie and retucks his shirt in his khakis.)
BOY: Nope. Right day. Wrong story parody.
BILL: What?
BOY: Merry Christmas.
(BILL finishes his cup of whiskey.)
BILL: Jesus Christ.
BOY: Nah. Not him. (quote fingers) Not "Him."
BILL: Not him.
BOY: I'm you.
(Boy looks around.)
BOY: Sorry if I woke everybody up.
BOY: Where's your family?
BILL: Billy?
BILLY: (nods) What tipped you off, the nose? Noses can't get fat, I suppose. Unless you're an alcoholic, I guess. Wait - you better not be an alcoholic.
BILL: You're me - Billy?
BILLY: I'm serious, you better not be-
BILL: I'm not an alcoholic-
BILLY: SWEAR you're not an alcoholic.
BILL: Hey, shut up. Definitions are constantly changing.
BILLY: Asshole.
BILL: How old are you? Am I?
BILLY: Where's your wife? It's like midnight. Shouldn't you guys be putting gifts under the tree for your kids and cutting each other down, like our parents-
BILL: How old are you, me?
BILLY: 17. Hold up. Where's your tree?
BILL: This isn't my house. I'm housesitting.
BILLY: You're housesitting with your wife? With your family? That's weird.
BILL: I don't have-
(The orange cat, LOUIS CK, ambles through the room. He ignores both BILL and BILLY and moves to the kitchen. Pause.)
BILLY: (evenly) Fuck, is that.
BILL: Louis CK.
BILLY: (evenly) Fuck, is a Louis CK.
BILL: He's a comedian.
BILLY: That, is a cat.
BILL: No, he's NAMED after a comedian, named Louis CK. You're gonna really like him.
BILLY: I don't like, CATS.
BILL: You like comedians.
BILLY: But I don't like, CATS. You're not housesitting. You're CAT-sitting.
BILL: Well, you will gain an appreciation for some things you didn't use to like as you mature, Billy.
(BILLY wanders around the living room, checking pictures, looking.)
BILLY: ...gain the expense of what? A wife? A family? Dignity?
BILL: Well-
(BILLY holds up a hand, quieting BILL. He points to the ceiling)
BILLY: (re: stereo) Fuck is this?
BILL: (pauses) Taylor Swift.
BILL: You gain an app-
BILLY: I'm going to murder you.
BILL: She's good-
BILLY: I'm going to murder YOU, so I can put ME-
BILL: No, seriously, she's pretty-
BILLY: -out of MY misery. OUR misery.
BILL: You don't even know her-
(BILLY holds up a hand, quieting BILL. Pause.)
BILLY: You and I need to talk.