September 7, 2006

A Play A Day #147



Setting: Bowling alley, they are bowling into the audience. Benches and scorer's stand with chair. They are bowling throughout.

Detroit: You mean to say, if I wasn't here, then I'd have to be somewhere else?

Oleander: That's what he said.

D: That's what this guy told you?

O: Yeah, pretty much, yeah.

D: Dumb shit guy he was. Man, what if, what if... I... I...I... was just, uhhh like, not here.

O: Then he'd say you'd have to be somewhere else.

D: Fuck that, I mean what if wasn't here at all... I wasn't alive.

Flap: Your turn, O.

O: He'd say you'd be buried in the ground then...

D: Shit, no, I mean... Flap, I mean, what if didn't exist, you know? This guy gonna say I'd be somewhere else then.

F: What're you guys talking about?

D: Oleander meets this guy on the bus today tells him if he wasn't there he'd be somewhere else.

F: The guy on the bus?

D: Tells Oleander that if Oleander wasn't there, he'd be somewhere else.

F: Sure, sounds reasonable to me, Detroit.

D: No, but Flap, he doesn't just mean like in the sense that Oleander wouldn't be on the bus, but like wouldn't exist.

F: Like if he was dead.

D: No, like if he never was thee... uhhh, never existed.

O: Bowl Detroit.

D: You know what I mean?

F: This guy just tells you this, outta the blue on the bus?

O: Yeh, crowded so I sat next to him.

F: Nice guy?

O: Sure. Seemed like it.

F: Just asking these weird questions?

O: No, no, he didn't ask any questions... well, I guess, like "How are you?" , "Nice day?" Standard shit like that.

F: Standard. Right.

O: But he starts telling me that if I wasn't there, I'd be somewhere else.

F: Right, but he meant like in the cosmic sense.

O: I guess. So what he's saying is...

D: He's saying that we have to be here.

O: No, uhh... what... no... I don't...

D: Well, think about it, if we're not here, we don't exist, we have to exist somewhere else...

O: Right, yeah, but...

D: No, listen: and if we're existing somewhere else, then we'd have to be doing the exact same shit we're doing right now, so we'd basically be somewhere else, but we wouldn't know it, 'cuz that would just be us, living there, bowling on Tuesday nights, drinking beer, shit like that, same everything else, we wouldn't know the difference...

O: Parallel universe?

D: Hey, that reminds me, you owe me a beer from the first game.

O: Yeah, shit, forgot about that. Sorry, Detroit, wasn't trying to gyp ya.

D: I know, just reminding ya.

O: Shit Flap... 7-10...

F: You know, I've never, in twenty years picked this up.

D: No shit, Flap? Really? I picked it up four times in my bowling career.

O: I've hit it twice, and I ain't even been bowling that long, no twenty years anyway. (long pause, they contemplate the grandaddy of all bowling shots) It's a fuckin' bitch, to be sure.

F: Shit, had no open frames yet...

D: Hey, I got an idea! Try this, Flap. You're not here.

F: Right...

D: So, you're somewhere else, right?

F: Sure, Detroit, somewhere else.

D: But guess where you are in this somewhere else.

F: Costa Rica?

O: Detroit, knock it off, let's just roll, here...

D: Yeah, hold on... just guess where you are?

F: Already guessed, I said Costa Rica.

D: Right, wrong though.

F: Yeah, I figured.

D: You are, instead of being right here, you are right on the side of the ten pin.

F: Who's rolling?

O: Just roll, Flap.

D: No, I got it! You're rolling, but then you're not here, soon as that ball leaves your fingers, you're by the ten pin.

F: Nice. Neat trick.

D: Hey man, you just gotta believe.... so soon as the ball gets close to the ten pin, you kick the ten into the seven.

O: And the fuckin' ball crushes your ankle...

D: No...

O: And everyone says where the fuck is Flap...

D: No, listen...

O: And then they see him hobbling back up the lane with a broken fuckin' ankle.

D: No, it...

F: I better roll, Detroit.

D: Listen, you do it really fast, you appear by the ten pin for one-hundredth of a second, just as the ball's about to hit it, and then you're back here...

O: Yeah, that's not gonna freak anyone out.

D: They won't be able to tell, it'll be like the naked lady in beer commercials.

F: No, they're always wearing bikinis or some shit.

D: The ones you see, right, but they always flash like a naked lady on the screen too...

O: Never seen one.

D: No, me either, but they...

F: Then how do ya know, Detroit?

D: I read about it once.

O: You don't read, man.

D: Shit, it was about naked ladies, so I figured I'd give it a try.

F: Sounds like you.

D: Yeah, and they put like a picture of a naked lady in the commercial for like so short a time that you actually don't see it.

O: So what the fuck good is that?

F: Yeah, you don't see it?

D: Except, scientists know that your brain sees it. You don't know you've seen it, but your brain does.

F: So?

D: Called, uhhh, sublivable advertising, something like that.

O: Sublivable?

D: Something like that. So next time you're on a beer run, you see two kinds of beer sitting there, and you look at one, and nothing, then you look at the other one, and, holy shit, naked lady!

O: So you buy the naked lady?

D: I would, wouldn't you?

F: Sure, big deal, but... uhhh... I think a commercial is different than bowling.

D: I guess, but you just have to tell yourself that it's possible. We gotta believe that crazy man on the bus was onto something that could be applied to improve our bowling!

O: He wasn't crazy.

D: Maybe not, but everything happens for a reason, O. Everything. Happens. For. A. Reason.

(long pause, something mystical washes over the bowlers now)

F: Flash. I'm gone. Kick the pin. Flash. I'm back?

D: Yeah! That's the fucking story, Flap.

O: Roll.

(Flap picks up ball, mimics the throw, lights fade out slowly, then back up very quickly, Flap is still in the throw pose on the lip of the stage, O and D frozen behind him, beat)

O: Didn't even hit the ten pin.

D: Close though; no harm in trying.

(A beat, Flap collapses, he's in pain)

F: Ahhh! My ankle! My fuckin' ankle!

(lights out immediately)


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Three very philosophical plays in a row. I'm impressed.