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 Posted: Mon Jan 12th, 2009 09:48 pm
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playwright_bo
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newer draft posted below

Last edited on Thu Jul 11th, 2013 12:28 am by playwright_bo

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 Posted: Fri Jan 23rd, 2009 06:13 pm
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DavidRigano
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Mana: 
I really like the concept a lot. It sounds like it could be really fun. But it moves sooo fast. I feel like there's no time to get to know the characters. Even Phil, who's been in every scene, I don't really know him. I haven't had enough time to see him interacting with any one character. So many of his responses seem automatic, rather than organic.

Basically, I just wish the scenes were longer. I'd love to see more so that I can hopefully get to know Phil better and understand his circumstance, but right now everything goes by too fast for me to take it in.

The biggest question I have--and I assume this will be answered in the coming scenes--is why the Sea Turtle people have such a huge impact on him (and why he doesn't just block their phone calls).

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 Posted: Sat Jan 24th, 2009 11:22 pm
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playwright_bo
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Last edited on Fri Feb 22nd, 2013 07:34 pm by playwright_bo

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 Posted: Sun Mar 22nd, 2009 09:35 pm
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playwright_bo
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Now available as a whole on my website:
http://www.bo-o-rama.com/one-act-plays/

In other news it has been accepted into the Last Frontier Theater Conference.
Anyone else going?

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 Posted: Fri Feb 22nd, 2013 07:35 pm
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playwright_bo
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Working on new draft:
Phil:                             A man between worlds.

Tom:                            An office employee.

Candy:                                    A woman that works with Phil and Tom.

Susan:                         A wealthy woman who was saved by sea turtles. 

Setting:


There is a computer work station with at least one cubicle wall upstage of it.  This is the area where Phil works, behind the wall, partially visible, is where Tom works.  There is also an area where employees can go to mingle and drink coffee.  There needs to be a bed, when the bed is used we are in Phil’s bedroom.  The bed can either be on a wagon, rolling on and off stage, or onstage the whole time and ignored until it is used.  A projection screen can be used to show the slides at the top of the show and the movie/tv Phil’s house or the computer monitor at Phil’s work station can be used for both.
Sound should play a large part in the production.  Ominous moody soundscapes when reality is bending, if you can.
As the audience is filtering into the performance space the performers are in costume and greeting the audience, with the exception of Phil who is at his work desk entering nonsense into a spreadsheet.  There are images of sea turtles on his computer screen or being projected on a wall/screen behind him.  The performers in the house greet the audience with a familiarity that should be slightly off putting, referring to everyone as “Brother” and “Sister”.  A sample conversation that the performers should have with the audience members as they help them to their seats: 

Performers:

Welcome Brother(or sister).  Welcome (shakes hands).  How have you been?  We’ve missed you.  How is the family?  Welcome, I am so glad that you could make it, so very excited to see you here.  It’s been such a long time.  Thank you so much for coming, I hope you have a lovely time.  Here is your seat, have a lovely time.  Remember Brother (or sister) we are all in this together.
The Performers should feel free to improvise their own monologues and to respond to the audiences.  Treat this interaction as if they are meeting an old friend at church.
After a time when the house lights start to dim the performers should all head to the stage and take their positions.  Candy and Susan go off stage, Tom goes to his cubicle, nodding to Phil as he makes his way behind Phil’s desk.  While the house lights are still at half Phil stands on his chair and speaks.  The turtle images stop.

Phil:

Hello, and welcome, I’d like to thank you for coming.  For starters, yes, we start with a thank you, to all of you and then move on.  I hope you’ve had a wonderful day so far, thank you, oh, I said that already, I think.  Sometimes, important things happen, also sometimes not important things also happen.  I, uh, I’m not usually, well not very good at this sort of thing.  Sorry, I’ll do my best...  We weren’t meant to live and work in squares.  Boxes aren’t natural and will never be enough.  People forget that right angles aren’t real.  Uh, like I said, I’m not very good at this, sorry.  Our brains were hard wired for survival not to create databases on spreadsheets, this isn’t working.  You may not be aware of it but there are holes in this universe…  Holes at the very center of everything, they are everywhere, I mean…  But you can’t really see them, because they are mostly not there.  The Universe is mostly empty!  It’s not easy to explain, and I know I’m not doing a very good job of it.  But it’s important that I try.  I guess.  Thank you so much for coming here, it means the world to me.  I’m not, well, I have to go back to-  There are things I am supposed to be doing, I guess…                                               
                                                Phil awkwardly pauses for a moment unable to continue
                                                Phil gets down off of his chair
The lights change so that the characters are now in an office.

Tom:

Hey, is that you Phil?

Phil:

Yeah.

Tom:

I didn’t even notice you were here, when did you get in?

Phil:

Just now

Tom:

That’s crazy, you’re like a ninja.

Phil:

Yeah.

Tom:

How come you’re always late?  Like always?  Never mind, none of my business.  Oh, hey, almost forgot you’ve got a phone call.  I think they’ve been on hold for like an hour.

Phil:

(Still standing on a chair)  Uh, phone, for me?

Tom:

Well, unless we hired someone else named Phil…  Pick up dude, it’s on line 3.

Phil:

(Sits in his chair) Uh, ok, thanks…  Uh…  Hello?

Susan(Voice Over):

Hello?  Who is this?

Phil:

What do you mean who is this you called me. Who are you? 

Susan(V.O.):

You’re not going to believe this-

Phil:

-Believe what?

Susan(V.O.):

-But what you decide in the next few minutes could change everything.  You have the chance to change the fate of this world…  For pennies a day you can save an entire species from extinction.  If you act now we’ll throw in a free-

Phil:

-Oh, if I act now, no thanks, sorry, not interested.

Susan:

Excuse me, but I haven’t finished.

Phil:

That’s quite all right; I think I’ve heard enough.

Susan:

(sighs, pause)…  That’s not very nice.

Phil:

Uhm, uh, well, I’m sorry?

Susan’s Voice:

I like your tie.

Phil:

What?

Susan’s Voice:

Out of all the ties to choose from in your closet you chose that one and I think it looks nice on you.

Phil:

What?  

Susan:

Your tie, it goes nicely with your green eyes. 

Phil:

My eyes are green?  Is this a joke?  Who are you?

Susan:

I’m Susan, but don’t worry we will get into that later.  I’ve sent you an information brochure that will explain everything.  So, if at some point today you feel like making a difference all you have to do is check your mail box.  We want to make this as painless as possible for you.  Sorry I have to go, the turtles need me, and I’ll see you later.

Phil:

What?  Hello?

Susan:

(Makes the sound of a phone hanging up and a dial tone until Phil hangs up the phone)

Phil:

That was weird.

Tom:

You’re weird.

Phil:

Yeah.

Tom:

So. 

Phil:

So.

Tom:

You were late to work again.

Phil:

Yeah. 

Tom:

Got a good story to go along with your truancy?

Phil:

No. 

Tom:

Sure, sure, a gentleman never asks and a lady never tells, I hear you, I hear you loud and clear.  No need to bore me with the disgusting details, you animal. 

Phil:

I suppose I should go clock in-

Tom:

-Don’t worry about it. 

Phil:

Don’t worry?

Tom:

I clocked you in on time.

Phil:

You know you’re not supposed to do that, you could get into trouble.

Tom:

Me?  If they catch you slacking off like that you’re the one who could catch some serious heat.

Phil:

Yeah, but I don’t think you’re allowed to touch someone else’s time card-

Tom:

-Oh don’t worry about that, I don’t think upper management is going to pull its collective heads out of its massive asses long enough to notice.

Phil:

Yeah, well, thanks.
(Pause)

Tom:

No problem.  So…

Phil:

So?

Tom:

So…

Phil:

Yeah.

Tom:

Well, I got to get back to-

Phil:

-Yeah, yeah.

Tom:

Well, it was good talking with-

Phil:

Yeah.
Time passes Phil hits a few random keys on his keyboard, he tries whistling but he doesn’t know a tune
Tom reappears

Tom:

Hey!

Phil:

What?

Tom:

Who was on the phone man?  Who called you?

Phil:

No one.

Tom:

No one?

Phil:

Just a telemarketer

Tom:

Oh?

Phil:

Yeah.

Tom:

What did they want?

Phil:

Oh, uh, I’m not really sure, I wasn’t really paying attention, I tuned out when they started asking me for money.

Tom:

Hey, good for you.

Phil:

Yeah, I guess. 

Tom:

Well, next time they call, I’ll tell them to go straight to hell.

Phil:

It’s not that-

Tom:

-If I had known they were telemarketers why I would’ve—

Phil:

Really, it’s no big deal.

Tom:

No big deal?  It’s total bull dude, complete and utter bull.  It’s like, hello; we work for a living, stop asking us for handouts!  Want money, get a job!  I hate takers man, there are makers and there are takers, freaking parasites trying to bleed us dry-

Phil:

-Well, it’s not always tha-

Tom:

-I mean I hate this job, I mean, I really hate it, but you don’t see me asking other people for their hard earned cash.  It’s my money, I earned it, and what did you do that’s so special to deserve it?  Hunh?  Right?  I know right.  You’re right there with me.  Up top Phil!

                                    Tom give Phil a high five, Phil barely gets his hand up in time
                                    Pause 

Phil:

Do you think the mail has come?

Tom:

What?

Phil:

Has the mail come in today do you think?

Tom:

Oh, I don’t know, probably.

Phil:

I need to check my mail box.

Tom:

You do?

Phil:

Yeah, might as well, it’ll give me something to do.

Tom:

I know right, this job is so damn boring. 

Phil:

Yeah.

Tom:

While you’re over there, you should treat yourself to some coffee.

Phil:

Uh, what?

Tom:

The mail room has the best coffee dude in the building, no joke.  The rest of the coffee makers in this whole building are complete crap, but the mail room, god bless them, have a nice set up, so you might as well take the good stuff where you can get it.

Phil:

Uh, ok.  Do you want me to get you any? 

Tom:

Coffee?

Phil:

Yeah.

Tom:

No thanks, but if you see Candy give her one of these for me (Tom point a Phil, makes a clicking sound, and winks).

Phil:

(Points, repeats clicking noise, and winks)

Tom:

Yeah, just like that.

Phil:

Uh, ok.
Phi leaves his work area and walks over to the coffee area/mail     room

 

 

 

SCENE 2

In which Phil gets mail and coffee

Phil takes a flier out of his office mail box and reads it over muttering select phrases to himself such as “Susan’s Save The Sea Turtles… for pennies a day…  sea turtles save lives”.
                                   

Candy(enters):

Hey Phil, how’s it going?

Phil:

Oh, uh, hey Candy, it’s uh, okay I guess.  Uh, Tom wanted me to point at you, make some clicking sounds and wink at you, but uh…

Candy:

(Laughs) Tom?  Oh he’s such a brat.

Phil:

Yeah, I guess.

Candy:

What’s that?

Phil:

What’s what?

Candy:

In your hand


Phil:

My hand?

Candy:

That flier?

Phil:

Oh, uh, (reads) “Susan’s Save the Sea Turtle Refuge, Every day hundreds-

Candy:

-Looks like you were the only one to get one, that’s weird.

Phil:

Yeah.

Candy:

Sea Turtles, that’s funny.  They just want your money Phil. 

Phil:

Yeah?

Candy:

It’s just a scam, as soon as you start giving them money then they’ll have your address, phone number, and they’ll peg you for a sap and it will never stop.  It’s a trap.

Phil:

A trap?

Candy:

You know, I’ve never even seen a sea turtle.  I saw a tortoise once at a petting zoo when I was little, I think.

Phil:

Oh?

Candy:

Yeah, aren’t they like the same thing?  Sea Turtles and Tortoises?  Is that the right plural, tortoises?  Tortoises, sounds weird doesn’t it?  Tortoises, tortoises, tortoises…  

Phil:

No, they are different. 

 

Candy:

Really?

Phil:

Actually, yeah.

Candy:

Oh.  You know I hate that word?

Phil:

Yeah?

Candy:

Actually, I hate the word actually.  It’s like the word arrogantly supposes that nothing you say can mean anything unless you use that word.  It’s like there isn’t any meaning in saying anything unless you actually say actually in conjunction with it.  You ever notice that?

Phil:

No.

Candy:

Oh, it probably just bugs me because the creepy guy in accounting uses it all the time.

Phil:

Who Greg?  Greg’s creepy?

Candy:

Yeah.  Greg.  What a dick.  Everything he says has to start with either actually or I think.  I think this, I think that, actually I think blah, blah, blah.  Well no duh that’s what you think you are the one saying it, so no one is questioning if it is what you actually are thinking or not.  Can you believe I used to date him?  What a joke.

Phil:

You dated-

Candy:

-Well, you probably came in here for something- 

Phil:

I heard the coffee was good

Candy:

Oh, it is, it really is the best in the building.

Phil:

Yeah, I had heard that, what’s the secret? 

Candy:

Are you asking the secret to the amazing coffee here in the mail room?

Phil:

Yeah, I guess. 

Candy:

Well, you’re a good guy Phil, so I guess it’s ok to tell you

Phil:

Yeah? 

Candy:

But you have to promise me that you won’t tell anyone.
 

Phil:

Ok.  Yeah.  I promise.

Candy:

Well, simply put, they clean it. 

Phil:

They clean it?

Candy:

Yeah, its kind of funny, the rest of the building just lets their coffee makers go because they think it’s someone else’s job to clean it.  The whole rest of the building is living like animals who don’t clean up after themselves and suffering the consequences.  Well, don’t let me keep you from your work, but remember it’s a trade secret of the mailroom, see you around Phil.

Phil:

Oh, yeah, uh, see ya.

                                                Phil gets a cup of coffee and drinks it while reading the flier
                                                A moment passes

Phil:

Susan’s Save The Sea Turles… 

Susan’s Voice:

I think she likes you.

Phil:

Hunh?

Susan’s Voice:

A girl like that doesn’t ask you that many questions without being interested.  

Phil:

Interested? 

Susan:

Do you know how many questions she just asked you?
Phil doesn’t respond

Susan’s Voice:

I said, do you know how many questions she just asked you in that short little conversation you just had with her? 

Phil:

Nope.

Susan’s Voice:

10 questions.  10.  You don’t ask someone 10 questions unless you are interested in hearing some answers.  Someone once told me you are only ever interesting if you appear interested, I’m not sure what they meant by that.

Phil:

So?

Susan:

You’re hopeless…

Phil:

Ok.  I should get back to work.


                                                Phil goes back over to his work area.
                                                Susan appears in backlight or somehow mostly in shadow.

 

Susan:

In a tropical climate, on a warm sunny day a woman, let’s call her Susan, because that is my name too.  Susan once stood on the stern of a cruise ship, thought sad things, for a brief moment reflected on how low the hand rail was, and then dived, head first, into the open ocean.  No one on the ship noticed, and the warm sea currents hurried her away until she was as far away from anything as anyone can be.  Just before she grew too tired to swim or stay afloat a sea turtle swam up from the oceans depths and carried her back, miles and miles, to an inhabited island.  Now this, this is the important part, you see, at any point she could have simply let go of the turtle.  She could have easily swum back out into the ocean and drowned, but no, that was behind her now.  The turtle didn’t just save her life; it gave her a new one.  With a new life and a purpose this woman, called Susan, devoted the rest of her life to protecting sea turtles and their habitat.     
The lights return to normal, and Susan disappears.
                                    Phil goes back to his cubicle

Tom:

How’s the coffee?

Phil:

Hunh?

Tom:

How is the coffee?

Phil:

Oh, uh, well…  It’s nice.

Tom:

Nice?  Nice is a terrible word, it barely has meaning!  Who uses nice?  I’m sorry Phil, but I am going to need more than that.  Describe to me the aroma and bouquet of that hot and steamy beverage you are now enjoying.  Describe in as much detail as you can how you feel when that dark fluid slips past your lips and fills your mouth.  Can you feel the difference it is making releasing stimulants in your brain?  So talk to me Phil, tell me about it. 

Phil:

It’s okay.

Tom:

Okay?  Phil, you are killing me. 

Phil:

It’s all right (with a smirk) 

Tom:

ALL RIGHT? 

Phil:

For the purpose of wasting some time, it works.  I should, you know, get back to that. 

Tom:

Get back to what?

Phil:

Work, I should probably get something done today 

Tom:

Oh, yeah, I suppose.

Phil:

Yeah. 
                                                A moment where they both almost do work passes

Tom:

You know I tried to take up smoking just so I could get all the smoke breaks.

Phil:

How did that go?

Tom:

Yeah, it didn’t work out.  So instead I just save up my bathroom breaks.

Phil:

What?

Tom:

I don’t go to the bathroom all day, all day I’m sitting here and I don’t go to the bathroom, no matter how bad it gets I don’t go, not once, not ever, until say the last hour or so of the day and I just go there and don’t come out until the end of my shift.  It’s like an investment, all day I’m saving up for it…  That’s my me time, you got to have your own special me time you know.   

Phil:

You go to the bathroom and just sit there for an hour?

Tom:

That’s what I’m saying, regardless if I have to go or not.  Every day at the end of the day that’s where I am.

Phil:

I didn’t know that.

Tom:

Yeah, well, a man has to have his privacy you know.  Sometimes, when I actually have to go, you know actually have a movement; I can’t quite make it out at the exact end of the day so I have to clock out late.  That’s the best feeling in the world, because they have to pay me overtime for that, they actually have to pay me overtime to take a poop.

Phil:

Why don’t you just leave early?

Tom:

You can’t just leave early.  They won’t pay you for leaving early

Phil:

Oh…
                                   
Phil and Tom waste time pretending to work
 

Tom:

(Checks his watch) Well, I think I need to head to the little boys room.

Phil:

Cool.  I’m not feeling so good, I think I’m just going to head home.
                                   
Phil and Tom exit the stage in opposite directions
 

SCENE 3:

At Phil’s house

The lights change as Phil crosses the stage to where

He sets the “TV” up and turns it on
Phil tries changing the channels but each channel is the same stock footage of sea turtles.  Phil is scared of the sea turtles, ominous music plays, eventually Phil turns off the TV and goes to bed fully dressed

Phil:

I don’t believe in sea turtles.
Phil falls asleep.  Time passes and then Susan appears in her isolation area, and her hair is wet.
                                   

Susan:

I tried to fill my lungs with warm salt water
To fill the emptiness I felt inside
To taste the blue of the ocean
Daring to be lost
Drifting
Floating
Alone
The ocean found me
With uncertain direction
And knew where I needed to be
Boats only move forward, like big sharks
Forcing their way
But the current moves you everywhere
All at once
It’s easy
To lose yourself
In something big
In something really, really big…
Wake up!  Wake up!
We have to save the sea turtles!

Phil:

No.  Go away.  I’m sleeping.

Susan:

Rise and shine, the sea turtles won’t save themselves!

Phil:

I’m tired-

Susan:

-I cannot rest until all of the sea turtles are saved.

Phil:

Good for you. 

Susan:

It is good for me.  It is so amazing and wonderful, and fills me with such purpose.  I wake up each morning full of love for the new day just beginning.  Have you ever let yourself feel a part of something Phil, really truly a part of something bigger than yourself?  When you wake up in the morning do you feel excited for the new day beginning and all of the possibilities it will bring?  Dawn is the most spectacular sight in the world; do you wake up early to watch it?  You should, you should be thankful every morning for the dawn.

Phil:

No, I don’t.

Susan:

I’d say that I pity you Phil, but that’s not it.  I just want you to feel what I feel.  Everything has its purpose, and every day we are given a new beginning to start afresh and save the world from itself.  We can make the world into anything Phil!  The world can’t remake itself without you!  You are special.

Phil:

Go away.

Susan:

Come with me.

Phil:

You aren’t real.

Susan:

But the sea turtles are, and we have to save them!  With your help I know, I just know we could save them, we could save all of them.

Phil:

It’s a trap, you just want my money.

Susan:

I don’t want your money.

Phil:

I don’t believe you.

Susan:

I want to save the world.  I want you to save the world with me.  Together we can do it Phil, we can do anything. 

Phil:

Anything?

Susan:

We are of the oceans, all of us, we forget that, but that is where life began, that was where it all began, the world’s womb.  Earth, ha, what a stupid name for this planet.  Who names a planet after the dirt that dares rise above the waters!  The oceans Phil save the Sea Turtles and you will save the oceans!  

Phil:

I’ve never been to the ocean.
 

Susan:

You came from the ocean
 

Phil:

And?
 

Susan:

And what?
 

Phil:

What’s your point?
 

Susan:

My point? 
 

Phil:

I don’t believe in sea turtles.

Susan:

You don’t mean that, not really.

Phil:

I don’t believe in sea turtles!

Susan:

Every time you say that a sea turtle dies.

Phil:

I don’t believe in sea turtles!

Susan:

How can you say that, how can you say that to me, a sea turtle saved my life you know.

Phil:

Yes, yes, so you tell me all the time.  Who cares?  So a turtle saved your life, so what?

Susan:

You Stupid little Man!!!

                                    Susan Exits the stage and slams a door
                                    Phil violently sits up in bed

Phil:

No!
Phil stands up on his bed and addresses the audience
 
I’m sorry, this will only take a moment, I just have a few questions.  Have you ever felt alone in a crowded room?  Do you sometimes have trouble concentrating?  Do you sometimes think sad things?  Have you ever had difficulty making decisions?  Do you listen to yourself breathing and think, ‘that’s weird’.  Do you often look around the room and wonder how you got here?  Have you ever sat uncomfortably close to a stranger?  Was it in a darkened room like this one?  Was the room darkened so that you could pretend to be having a singular experience?  Did you politely look forward the whole time trying to pretend that the person next to you doesn’t exist?  Can you hear them breathing?  Can you hear me breathing? (breathes loudly)  Have you ever stared a stranger in the eye?  Was it on accident?  Did you smile awkwardly, or did you look away embarrassed?  Do you sometimes laugh at jokes just because someone else is laughing?  I heard a joke, and it wasn’t very funny- 
 
Phil laughs out loud and then cuts himself off unexpectedly to look out at the audience to see if anyone else is laughing.  After a time, Phil stretches, yawns, and lies down in his bed.
 
Did, YAWN, you know that yawns are contagious?  I wish more things we contagious.  Goodnight.
 
Lights change to indicate time passing morning
an alarm clock beeps; Phil turns it off and heads to work

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