Quarter-baked and Half-cocked
Stuart: (opening door, letting in Tammy, hugs and greeting kisses) Hello, Tammy! So nice to see you again; glad you could make it. You're the first one here.
Tammy: Oh, that's not like me at all! (laughter) It's nice to be back.
S: Yeah, how was Oklahoma?
T: Well, it's still flat; and I drew more than my fair share of stares pretty much everywhere I went, but I expected that. Always happens.
S: Yeah, I bet.
T: It's beautiful there though; I've always thought that there's so much more beauty in the harsh and rugged and austere.
S: Well said!
T: You know? Definitely more beauty in someone who's plain and unashamed than in someone who's gorgeous and glamorous but hides behind their appearance.
S: (pause, Stuart appraises her with impressed nods) Wow! Sounds like a philosophical trip for you.
T: Yeah, I guess; I didn't even know I'd been thinking these things until now. (knock on door; Stuart opens door)
Gus: Hey! Stuart! Brought some wine. Picked up some old skank, thought she might like a little party. (Olivia enters behind Gus)
Olivia: Thanks scum, with you it's always a little party. (lots of little greeting chatter, hugs, kisses, standard fare among good friends) Oh, Tammy, so nice to see you! Wasn't expecting you so early.
S: Well, Olivia, we were just discussing that Tam had a bit of an aesthetic awakening on her trip back home.
G: Oklahoma opened you right up, huh?
T: Yeah, sort of... It just reminded me how much beauty there is in those things that seem, on the outside, dull or ugly or creepy.
O: Well, we would all certainly know about that, wouldn't we? (laughter all around)
S: Definitely a theme in my life.
G: Speak for yourself! (more laughter)
O: You're just the cattiest halfie ever... you've always struck me as fermish.
G: (catty) Bitch! I was born as strong a merm as a good herm can be.
S: Listen to you two tossing out the taboo phrases! What would (said as a word," is-nah") ISNA say?
G: Fuck'em. I didn't even donate this year.
T: Seriously? You've got the spare cash.
G: Ah, I figured: they're so concerned with language, exactly what to say and when. It's not natural. It's like all big advocacy groups; they get stuck on what to call themselves, you know.
O: Yeah, it becomes so arduous that whatever they decide on instantly becomes its own stigma.
S: Well, I gave this year, again.
G: I agree with what they do; just not how they do it.
S: Yeah. Alright.
T: Hey, why don't we get (air-quotes) "the meeting" going. (they progress to a sofa and easy chair and sit)
O: I've always loved this couch, Stu. So cushy.
G: So where's the shit?
G: The shit?
S: Didn't you bring it?
G: Umm, no, not my turn.
T: You didn't bring any?
G: No, just the wine...
S: But, I thought...
G: I was supposed to bring the wine; so I...
S: Shit! Really?
G: Petty sure.
T: What should we do?
S: Hold on; I'll check in my drawer, bound to be plenty in there. (leaves)
O: You know, this is just the best group.
G: Oh yeah! Best in this town at least.
T: (laughing) Easily.
O: It's one thing to even find three other intersexuals in a town this size, but to find out they all share your love of weed. Wow, just perfect, you know.
T: Ohh... and they're all really fabulous-looking people too, don't forget that part.
G: Can we just agree on "hermaphrodite"... I hate "intersexual", sounds so medical.
T: Come on, don't go there again, Gus. Use whichever terms you want.
O: Yeah, or we'll just become a tiny version of ISNA.
G: I know, it's just that "intersexual" sounds like some bizarre synonym for "bisexual" and that's not really the hermie issue.
T: Yeah, but "hermaphrodite" reminds me of the church ladies whispering and pointing when I was a little girl.
S: (returning) Bad news! I scraped the last of my stash, and I could only come up with one.
G: One joint?
T: Well, we'll share, of course.
G: Yeah, but it takes me one strong joint, by myself, to get a good buzz.
T: Well, me too, but we'll just savor it that much more.
O: Yeah, Gus, we don't need to get a huge buzz.
S: Sorry guys, I'd like a whole stick too, but there was obviously a mix-up on who was bringing what.
O: Don't worry, Stu; it was always more about us four herms being together to get support than to get baked.
G: Yeah, sorry, not trying to be a buzzkill. Light it up.
T: Hey, this situation just made me think up a joke.
O: Your own joke?
T: Yeah, just popped into my head, just now. (joint is being passed)
S: Well, let's hear it! (lights start fading out)
T: O.K. What do you call four hermaphrodites with only one one joint?
G: (lights out, pause, in the dark) I don't know, what?