Monday, January 18, 2010
A scene in my play. The Grey Goat Pub, where men are men and so are half the women
Lazy in Gaza.
I have been asked by some actors to finally put my Fire In Brandford play together.
It is not together. It is far from together. To coin an oxymoron, beware of the guy who says he has it all together. This means he is so fu*cked up he is almost FUBR.
So no, I do not have the play together. To get it all done, right down to the last beat, takes discipline, energy.
On my diet of dusty five-year-old cans of Spam (the real thing) and incredibly complicated popcorn making kits from the food bank, I am as immobile as Jabba the Hutt, but sure long for a Carrie Fisher to do a little houri dance. Maybe that's it. The devil always tempts a Luther. Maybe he had his porn by some chick in a nun's outfit, who knows? Ah sacrilege. Gives ya a rush, donnit?
Says my friend John Dowson, an actor and sometime producer, "Don't send me any porn, Ivan."
Well, it's not porn, but it may lead to scorn.
So here is Act 1, Scene 3 three of my "Fire in Bradford".
GREY GOAT ENGLISH PUB AGAIN. THE PLACE IS NOISY AND RAUCOUS. THE MAIN ATTRACTION IS THE BUSY BAR WITH ITS FULLBREASTED, SATIN-BLOUSED BARMAIDS. THERE ARE TWO OF THEM , A BLONDE AND A BRUNETTE SERVING. THE PLACE IS INTERNATIONAL, THOUGH LARGELY SCOTS. SOME OF THE MEN ARE INDEED IN KILTS.
LYING DOWN ON HE BAIZE POOL TABLE, ONE FOOT STILL ON THE FLOOR AS PER RULES, A SCOTSMAN LOOKS SLIGHTLY RIDICULOUS, KILT HIKED WAY UP, BUTTOCKS SHOWING, AS HE ATTEMPTS A SHOT FROM THE MIDDLE OF THE TABLE.
ONE OF THE OPPOSING PARTNERS TAKES HIS CUE AND WORKS IT UP THE KILT OF THE SUPINE SCOTSMAN.
SCOTS POOL PLAYER.
Will ye just fuck- off, Mate?
HE GETS OFF THE TABLE AND RAISES A CUE TO THE CHEST OF THE OPPOSING PLAYER'S PARTNER.
THERE IS A MELLEE. AS OTHER CUES ARE RAISED AS IF IN EN GARDE POSITION.
VOICE OF MANAGER, WHO IS BEHIND THE BAR WITH THE MAIDS
You guys start fighting, you're all cut off for life.
THE POOL PLAYERS SETTLE DOWN.
THERE IS SMOKE IN THE AIR IN THE PUB, AND A COMFORTABLE WHISKEY SMELL.. HUM OF THE CROWD.
THE PROFESSOR AND HIS BOOK EDITOR ARE IN A BOOTH AT STAGE LEFT OF THE BAR. THEY ARE DRIKING TOBY BEER.
EDITOR (WHO IS DARK, BEARDED AND WEARING GLASSES)
What kind of a place did you take me to? I thought you said it was a swell British pub.
It is. But all these Scotsmen, mostly just off the boat, have all taken over. Most of them out of Glasgow, looking for a new life. I guess old habits die hard. They come here lookin for a woman or a fight. They'll take either one.
So what did you ask me out for. Sounds like something's very much on your mind. It's so smoky in here.(WIPES FOREHEAD)
It's smoky in my head, John. Right among the pillars.
There is this woman....
Oh yeah. Always "this woman." Most men, when they get divorced, find another woman. With you, it's one after another. You're right off the scale.
No. This one is different. Way different situation.(HE RAISES HIS GLASS AND TAKES A LONG DRAUGHT.)
Got this problem. I was more thoroughly loved last night than I'd ever been before. Yet somehow, I didn't finish.
She came to me without reservation. Yet I did not complete the act. I feel somehow that I had not been a full man. I had not achieved completion.
David, David David. You know that old bit out of Johnny Carson. Where this guy brings in this motorized
unicycle, which he calls a "Wheelie"?
Some days you just can't get your wheelie to work.
No, it wasn't anything like that. Seems she poured sand into my wheelie. Fucked me up.
THE PUBLISHER TAKES HIS OWN DRINK OUT OF THE TOBY GLASS.
(A BEAT HERE)
New one on me. It's usually you who is playing musical broads.
It's different this time. She is married, her husband looks like a voyeur, probably a poof, and I'll bet she's getting her real sex out of third guy if I know some women I think she is just using me for entertainment, an aphrodisiac and a sounding board. I also suspect she's on drugs.
Wow. You really pick 'em.Sounds like a story. Maybe you should write about it.
Jeezus, John. I really don't want to be in this play.
But I've got her smell. She seems right inside me. Ever been so horny your brain seems awash with alligator sperm?
Or so horny you could faint? LIke James Joyce, jacked off by a woman in a theatre and following that woman around for most of his days?
You got the scenario. I guess that's why you're an editor and me the writer. Yep. Looks like it's Professor and the Blue Angel. Poor old Professor Rath. Horny and confused as a mink on a sandbar. And crowing like a rooster while Marlene does everybody in town.
THE EDITOR (TAKES ANOTHER DRINK. HE SWATS AT A FLY)
This sound a bit different from Prof. Rath's situation. More bizzarre.
Can I say something?
Sounds like you've just stumbled on a houseful of pimps.
So what happened?
One day she walked into my creative writing class....
THE PROFESSOR IS INTERRUPED BY A WAITRESS WHO BTINGS MORE DRINKS. SHE IS BOSOMY AND THE PROFESSOR NOTICES.
SHE FINISHES SETTING UP, THEY HAVE FRESH DRINKS, THE PROFESSOR IS ABOUT TO PAY, BUT SHE IS DISINCLINED TO TAKE THE MONEY AT FIRST.
Are you Professor Lohan?
Therere's a phone call for you. At the bar. Do you want to take it?
PROFESSOR (LOOKS FIRST AT THE WAITRESS AND THEN AT THE EDITOR).
Oh, I guess I'd better...How did anyone know I was here?
THE PROFESSOR STANDS UP AND TURNS AROUND TO WALK OVER TO THE BAR. A LONE WOMAN IS
SITTING AT THE FAR CORNER, NEXT TO THE TELEPHONE. SHE IS PERCHED ON A VERY HIGH STOOL,
WHICH IS ABOUT TWO FEET AWAY FROM THE BRASSY, OAKEN BAR. THE PROFESSOR WONDERS HOW
SHE CAN REACH HER DRINK, AND SHE IN FACT IS HAVING SOME TROUBLE WITH THIS.
THE PROFESSHOR HAS TO GET PAST THE FUMBLNG WOMAN TO GET AT THE PHONE. HE HUNCHES DOWN A BIT TO GET AT IT.
SUDDENLY THE WOMAN, WHO IS DRESSED IN A BLACK SKIRT AND HIGH HEELS, AND NOW BEHIND, SOMEHOW IMMEDIATEL"Y BEHIND HIM, HE FEELS HER WINDING HER LEGS AROUND HIM FROM BEHIND. HE CAN"T GET AT THE HONE. HE TURNS ROUND TO DISCOVER PANTIES.
You've been doing some hard work, haven't you? I can smell the work and stress.
THE PROFESSOR (UNTANGLING HIMSELF, ONE KNEE AT A TIME. HE DOES THIS AS NATURALLY AS HE CAN, PUTTING AN ARM AROUND THE WOMAN'S RIGHT SHOULDER):
I think you're lovely. It's just that I have some business to attend to right now.
THE PROFESSOR KEEPS AND ARM AROUND THE WOMAN'S SHOULDER. HE REACHES FOR THE TELEPHONE WITH HIS RIGHT HAND.
THERE IS A DIAL TONE.
THE CALLER, PROBABLY TIRED OF WAITING, HAD HUNG UP.
HE TAKES HIS LEFT ARM OFF THE MYSTERIOUS WOMAN, GIVES HER A HUG AND GOES TO MAKE FOR THE BOOTH WHERE THE EDITOR STILL SITS WITING FOR HIM. HE REJOINS THE EDITOR.
The woods are full of funny people.
EDITOR (NOW A LITTLE AFFECTED BY THE BEER THAT HE HAS ALMOST FINIISHED):
I don't know how to tell you this. It really reminds me of a joke, the one about the musician, playing badly all night, complaining over the actions of a disgruntled pervert who kept masturbating in the second row.
I don't want to know!
Fiddler said "Someone threw a fuck at me."
What are your talking about?
Lady at the bar. Almost attacked me.
You got confidence. That's what it is.
THE PROFESSOR SHRUGS.
PROFESSOR 9TAKES A DRUGHT OF HIS UNFINISHED BEER)
Did you ever read a book by Frederic Exley, "A Fan's Notes"?
Of course. What of it?
It seems that Mr. Exley is disgusted over being a fan all his life, of loving the great football guy, The Gipper, of loving great authors.
But it was always somebody else that was great, never him."
There is another guy in this Celia's life. I can sense it. It's never going to be me.
Yep. You're like your archetype, I guess. Prof. Rath.Cuckolded by Marlene Dietrich. Crowing like a rooster.
THE PROFSSOR TAKES A DEEP DRAUGHT. HE STANDS UP FROM THE TABLE, CAUSING A GROAN OF CHAIRS. SUDDENLY HE CRIES OUT.
THIS CAUSES A STIR AMONG THE OTHER TABLES.
THE EDITOR (A LITTLE EMBARRASSED):
You sir, are a fucking nut.
Get out of that situation. Walk away from it.
......end Act 1, scene four