Sunday, August 14, 2016

An End of Summer Nightmare--An Original Play Based On a True Story

A kitchen.  An 8-year-old boy, HUDSON, is boiling keychains. Mother is supervising. She hasn’t totally given up, but given up enough that she is telling herself this is the budding of a great scientific achievement. She daydreams of son accepting Nobel Prize. He starts his speech with “It all started when my mother saw me for who I was and allowed me to boil keychains in her good pot…” She hopes this is how it will go and not the alternate story. In this one he is sitting on a couch with his stoner friends. They are covered in Cheeto dust and neck tattoos. They think their neck tattoos are “really deep” and “ironic”, but most people would describe them as “stupid” and “spelled wrong”.  They are one-upping each other in terrible parent stories. “You think that’s bad! My mom let me boil KEYCHAINS and didn’t say shit! How fucked up is that?”

*Writer’s note: I realize this isn’t how plays work. You can’t really convey “worried that son will hang out with Cheeto dust, neck tattoo covered losers” in one look. If anyone could though it would be Helen Mirren. She’s brilliant. Did you see her in ‘Red’? I watched it the night I was going to teach myself French after the kids went to bed. I’m sorry. I’m tired and I’m busy supervising a child who is boiling keychains.

Mother, SABINE, turns her tired eyes on her 5-year-old daughter, KENZIE, and thinks she should probably do something to feel like she is doing something remotely resembling parenting.

SABINE: Get off the iPad and do something else.
KENZIE: Can I do an experiment?

KENZIE starts pulling out bowls, pots, baking soda, spices, etc. Experiments=putting a bunch of shit in a pot, heating it up and seeing what happens. Pretty much what her son is doing, but that’s different. He’s eight. She still has standards. She has not totally given up yet.

SABINE: No!
KENZIE: YOU NEVER LET ME DO ANYTHING! Can I watch the iPad?

SABINE bangs head repeatedly into a wall while looking longingly at a calendar. As curtain closes, KENZIE can be heard yelling from off-stage.

KENZIE: CAN I DO AN EXPLOSION?


END SCENE

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