Malfunctioning Camus Filter
Setting: Apartment, sofa, a couple chairs.
(lights up, Mel is reading on the sofa, enter Rebecca, she is happy, sits on the nearby chair, she is humming)
Mel: (sighs, still reading) What?
M: (baleful) You're humming. That's something.
R: No, it's actually nothing. Just humming.
M: (annoyed) Well, I'm trying to read.
R: Don't let me bother you, then.
M: You are bothering me.
R: I don't mean to.
M: Yeah, well, you are. You're humming; I'm reading. I want some peace.
R: I don't have a problem with that.
(pause, he goes back to reading, she sits for a while)
M: Now what?
R: Nothing, dear.
M: You're still here.
R: I can't possibly be bothering you now.
M: You are.
R: I'm not trying to.
M: Yet, there you are. Sitting.
R: Not humming though.
M: Too bad. I'm so sick of you doing things like this.
R: I'm not doing anything.
M: I try to relax. Read something magnificent, be inspired, and I have to deal with your pestering.
R: I would never pester you.
M: You're a pest.
R: Being your girlfriend is not easy, you know. I come in here to just sit near my handsome, brainy boyfriend; enjoy being in the same room with you, and I'm made to feel unwelcome, unappreciated, unloved.
M: I'm reading Albert Camus! Do you understand?
M: Okay... I'm reading Camus. There is only room for me and his genius!
R: None for me?
M: I wish. Camus is so powerful, so uplifting, that I need an empty room to allow his specific weightiness to take hold.
R: I didn't know that.
M: Now you do.
R: I'm not happy about this.
M: See, you are so negative. I need a room bereft of negative energy in which Monsieur Camus can percolate.
R: I'm not negative.
R: I'm not!
M: You're digging a deeper hole.
R: I don't have to listen to this.
R: You're not nice.
R: (storming out) This is so stupid!
M: (calling after her) Hey! At least that wasn't negative.
(shaking head, back to his book)
M: Cheer me up again, Albert.
(lights fade as Mel laughs at something he is reading)
M: Oh, Camus... so delicious.