November 27, 2010

Script for a One-Act Play

Why I Want to Avoid Parties This Holiday Season 
a play in one act 
by M.A.H. 


Q........The Others

Act I

People are mingling in the background. Everyone is smiling and laughing. There is food and drink.

Q: So, how do you like being back in Nashville?
A: It's fine.

Q: What do you do?
A: I'm an artist. I paint.

Q: What do you paint?
A: Mostly abstract, but with some representational imagery.

Q: Do you use oils?
A: Oils, acrylic, watercolor, whatever. I like paint.

Q: Do you show your work in Nashville?
A: No.

Q: There's a little gallery on Highway 70, maybe you could show your work there, or at one of the high school art galleries.
A: [Nods slowly. Shows no expression. Tries to smile slightly. Nods slowly again.]

Q: Have you thought about teaching high school?
A: Not really. A drawing I have posted on my website contains the word, fucked. I don't think I'd be a good role model to teach a high school art class.

[Awkward silence. Q glances nervously around the room. A remembers she wore a watch specifically so she could look at it in situations like this. A looks at watch. Q failed to make eye contact with anyone. They resume the conversation.]

Q: What are you going to do?
A: I'm really good with removing wallpaper. I call myself "The Wallpaper Whisperer" and have demanded the dog address me as such during business hours. I also make affordable paintings under an alter ego and sell them out of a fake atelier- my version of Jaclyn Smith at Kmart. I've thought about making hand-painted Christmas ornaments, but that idea just came to me today. I'll take orders though; I work fast. A few years ago I invented a company that made one of a kind items upcycled from other items. I made a few prototype billfolds from mailing envelopes and messenger bag from a a couple of T-shirts. There's some handicapable furniture around here that could be modified and given a fresh new look. That would be the high-end stuff. I also invented a left-handed motorcycle glove with a neon orange palm, so that you could wave wildly at some asshole that was veering in your lane. I may pick up on that again.

Q: Are you married? Do you have kids?
A: Not really. No. I mean, Yes, I married a house recently. No kids, just dust bunnies, but you know, they're like kids.

[Awkward silence. Q glances nervously around the room. A remembers she wore a watch specifically so she could look at it in situations like this. A looks at watch. Q failed to make eye contact with anyone. They resume the conversation.]

Q: Do you think you'll stay in Nashville?
A: For now. The house needs me, plus there's a dog that rents out a couple of rooms in exchange for sentry duty. I prepare his meals. When he's not on guard duty, he spends time in group therapy with some rocks and bricks. His best friend is a deflated basketball.

Q: Do you smell vinegar?
A: Yes, It's my new perfume. I discovered it while removing wallpaper. What do you think?

Q: I think I'll freshen up my drink.
A: Go right ahead.

[Fade out.]


Steven LaRose said...

I just worry about farting.

Carla said...

People have Holiday parties?

Steven LaRose said...

I opened the browser page to fit my whole screen and I noticed little birdies flying out of your header. Have they always been there?

M.A.H. said...

It's not like my inbox is full of invites and if anyone catches wind of this post, I doubt it will be. The script has been standard fare for the last 5 months. I'm at a loss on how to move the convo past this. i'll stop at that. Otherwise, it will lead to a new post.

No, the birds are from a new template. I thought it was funny how it worked out like that. I am easily amused. Obviously.

Nomi Lubin said...

Ahh, this is good.

Nomi Lubin said...

"one of the high school art galleries"

Nomi Lubin said...

It can be a...challenge speaking to well-intentioned people about your painting life. It's easier, for me, with people who say things like "are you any good?" Much easier.

M.A.H. said...

Yes, that does seem to be the easy one. I always seem to get:
a) do you sell your work?
followed by
b) is that how you make a living?

a) Yes.
followed by
b) Depends on what you call a living. When times get tough, the Botox is always the first to go. Next is the Beluga. I manage though. Is that your Prius?

Nomi Lubin said...

Is that your Prius. Why is that so funny?

"Do you sell your work"? Right. That is probably THE most common question.

Are my questions as annoying when I don't know someone's field? I like to think not, that I'm just FAR too sensitive. But I could be wrong. I could be as bad as anybody.