June 28, 2006

A Play A Day #76


Jules - young girl
Cyla - young girl

Setting: A swing set in a public park. Jules is swinging quite high as lights come up.

Jules: (seeing audience, she starts talking) She's coming. It doesn't matter when I start swinging, she always seems to know. She's horrible! Wait 'til you meet her; you'll see what I mean. Ohhh, here she comes...

Cyla: (entering) Hi, Jules!

Jules: (darkly) Hi, Cyla.

Cyla: You're such a good swinger!

Jules: (darkly, cynically) Thanks.

Cyla: Can you teach me how to swing that high?

Jules: No.

Cyla: Oh, why not?

Jules: I'm busy.

Cyla: Busy?

Jules: Yeah, busy swinging.

Cyla: When you stop, then you can help me?

Jules: No.

Cyla: Oh, why not?

Jules: Because I'll be busy.

Cyla: Really?

Jules: Yep, busy not swinging.

Cyla: Wow, you're always really busy!

Jules: Yes, I am.

Cyla: Too busy for me, huh, Jules?

Jules: Yes. Too busy for you.

Cyla: (long pause, Cyla sits on ground, very close to the arc of Jules' swing, pause continues) Jules?

Jules: What?!

Cyla: Why are you too busy for me?

Jules: I have a lot of things to do.

Cyla: So you don't...

Jules: (interrupting) Don't sit so close!

Cyla: What?

Jules: Move!

Cyla: Where?

Jules: Away!

Cyla: Away from here?

Jules: Away!

Cyla: O.K. (she stands and turns, Jules' arc makes her feet slam directly into Cyla's back, Cyla is knocked forward, facedown on the stage, Jules does nothing, continues to swing)

Jules: Why'd you do that? (no response) Hey, Cyla, why'd you stand there?! Cyla, what are you doing down there!?

Cyla: (stirring, she sits up, she is bravely holding back tears) What?

Jules: I asked you why you did that?

Cyla: Did what?

Jules: Stood up right in front of my feet.

Cyla: I didn't mean too, Jules.

Jules: You slowed down my swing!

Cyla: Sorry, Jules, I...

Jules: I can't believe you could be so stupid!

Cyla: I just wanted...

Jules: You wanted what?!

Cyla: I just wanted you to touch me.

Jules: Fine then. I did.

Cyla: Yes. Thank you.

Jules: Don't you have somewhere to go to?

Cyla: No.

Jules: Could you find someplace else?

Cyla: Probably not.

Jules: Why do you have to be so difficult?

Cyla: I really want to play with you.

Jules: Who needs you?

Cyla: You?

Jules: Wrong! Guess again.

Cyla: You?

Jules: Still wrong, Cyla.

Cyla: I think it's right.

Jules: Cyla, I don't need you.

Cyla: Why did you call me?

Jules: What do you mean?

Cyla: You called me and told me to come to the swingset at the park.

Jules: What!!?

Cyla: Ummm, you did.

Jules: (slowing down on the swing) I don't even know your phone number!

Cyla: My mom told me you called and talked to her.

Jules: Ha! Liar! I talked to your Dad!

Cyla: Sorry.

Jules: (slowing down more) Why do you tell such awful lies!?

Cyla: I don't know.

Jules: (stopping, but staying on the swing) You're just a liar; that's all you are.

Cyla: I just want to be your friend.

Jules: I don't need any friends, o.k!

Cyla: But...

Jules: NONE!! Got it!!

Cyla: I'll do whatever you want me to.

Jules: You couldn't do anything I wanted you to!

Cyla: I can try.

Jules: Listen, you just don't undersatnd me, alright?

Cyla: But, I could!

Jules: No... listen... you want to be my friend?

Cyla: Yes! Yes! Yes! Of course!

Jules: Really?

Cyla: Uh-huh!!

Jules: You still have that stupid cat?

Cyla: You mean Sir Puddles?

Jules: Yeah, the one with the retard name.

Cyla: Yeah, but I don't think...

Jules: Where is he?

Cyla: He's at my house.

Jules: Listen, I'm going to go get him; you stay here.

Cyla: Why?

Jules: Because I'm going to bring the dumb thing back here.

Cyla: No... why are you getting my cat?

Jules: Well, I want to find out how badly you want to be my friend.

Cyla: Real bad! But why are you going to get Sir Puddles?

Jules: You'll find out!! Just stay here and swing and something and don't tell anybody where I went!

Cyla: But I'm...

Jules: Got it?!

Cyla: Yes.

(Jules exits, Cyla starts swinging, as she approaches maximum height, she says her lines)

Cyla: She's coming. It doesn't matter when I start swinging, she always knows. She's horrible! Wait 'til you meet her; you'll see what I mean. Ohhh, here she comes...

Jules: (entering) Hi, Cyla!

Cyla: (darkly) Hi, Jules.

(lights start to fade)

Jules: You're such a good swinger!

Cyla: (darkly, cynically) Thanks. (breaking character) Oh wow, Jules, "mean teenager" is the toughest character yet!

Jules (also breaking character) Yeah, I know! Are we really going to be that mean when we're 15?

Cyla: I hope not. C'mon, what's your next line?

Jules: Ummmm... oh yeah... Can you teach me how to swing that high?

(lights out)



Doug B. said...

Holy crap... this play rocks!

emcee emdee said...


It sounds a lot like the disagreement Louisa had with her best friend yesterday. But I don't think they were play-acting. (Luckily we don't have a cat.)

Was your middle child an inspiration for this in any way?


Brendon Etter said...

No, Mcmd, no inspiration from anyone of this establishment. I just wanted to tie the concept of swinging to their personalities, make them reversible, then thought I'd throw the twist at the end that they were acting out a part.... rehearsing for their near future, in a way. I just didn't have the heart to make Jules that mean when I was writing it out. Another night and this play could have ended very miserably; I had several choices to make, and, surprisingly for me, I chose the relatively optimistic path.

Doug, thanks for the support and encouragement in getting these plays on the big site. Check out some of the archived plays for further fun. I can't say you'll like them all as much as this one, but there's a pretty big batch to choose from. I have yet to put up a play that I dislike; that's not to say that other people will like them all. Indeed, even some people, like this one woman I know, who are very close to me don't like them all.

I've been called "filthy", "degrading", "cynical", "dark", "pessimistic" and "disgusting" among other descriptors. I say, you ain't seen nothing yet.

But, don't read #56, unless you want to be worried.

Into the arms of satire, I fall and sleep.