April 13, 2007

A Play A Day #364

The Service


Setting: Frank's apartment

(lights up, a door bell sounds, Frank enter from stage left, crosses to door and opens it)

Frank: Ahh, hello.

Angie: Hi. Mr. Clemmons?

F: Yes, yes... you're from the service, correct?

A: Yes, sir.

F: Great, great... I was just going to get ready, and...

A: Don't worry, sir. Nothing to be done. I'll just get started right away.

F: I insist. I like to be properly prepared for this sort of thing.

A: Okay... ummm.. really though, I can start any time.

F: Sure, I know, but really, just a moment, I'll be back in just a touch, and much better prepared for you.

A: (confused) Umm, should I at least bring my stuff in, sir?

F: Oh, yes, by all means! Bring all your stuff in, if... if you think you'll need it, that is.

A: I usually need most of it, looks like a pretty big job.

F: You can tell just like that?

A: Yes, yes... I've had a lot of experience with big jobs like this; so don't worry, I'll still be done in a jiffy.

F: Well, don't wory about that; I'd rather you took your time.

A: Well, it will depend on what kind of mess I find.

F: Oh, I'm clean, I'm clean, don't worry about that.

A: Yes, I'm sure you are, sir.

F: Yeah, so, just a moment then. I'll just finish getting ready. (exiting) Be right back.

(Angie starts bringing in standard cleaning implements, broom, duster, bucket, mop, cloths, cleaning chemicals, slowly surveys the state of Frank's apartment, starts getting her materials out and readies herself to start cleaning, Frank re-enters from stage left, he is completely naked except for a kitten mask, Angie doesn't see him, but hears him)

A: Well, I thought it was a big job, but now I see it should be much more manageable.

F: (looking at his crotch) Oh, ummm... I use it well, I assure you.

A: Yes, looks like it.

F: I have to admit, I'm new to this... how do you usually like to start?

A: Well, I'll definitely need to use this... (turns around holding out a long feather duster and sees Frank) JESUS CHRIST! SHIT!! (jumps back, wielding the feather duster in front of her instinctually as if a sword)

F: What?!

A: What are you doing!!?

F: I just got ready!

A: You're naked!

F: Yeah, I mean...

A: Why are you naked?!

F: I... I thought it would be better for you...

A: It's not! It's not!

F: Is it the mask?!

A: No, no!

F: I can take that off...

A: No! Don't take anything else... What are you thinking?!

F: I'm thinking it's much easier to have sex if I'm naked.

A: It's not!

F: It's not? I should put my clothes back on?

A: No!

F: Oh, I'm..

A: I mean, yes! Yes! Yes!

F: But, isn't that just going to make it take longer?

A: No!

F: Oh, we just do it with my clothes on?

A: No! Please, sir... you can't be naked!

F: Okay, okay... I'm sorry... (leaves quickly)

(Angie stands there in shock for quite a while, replaying what just happened in her head, then she starts repacking her cleaning materials, and preparing to leave, Frank reenter with pants and shirt on, she doesn't see him or hear him)

F: You're leaving?

A: (turning around frantically) Yes! Yes! I have to go.

F: But what about...

A: No! I can't stay after seeing that!

F: It was that bad?

A: Sir, you can't... I could press charges.

F: Oh, come on! That's just mean!

A: You came out of your room naked, and made it seem that I was here for sex.

F: You're not?

A: Sir, I clean houses!

F: Riiiiight... annnnnd?

A: And? And? And exactly what?

F: Well, it said in your ad "one hundred percent satisfaction guaranteed"...

A: So?!

F: Well, I figured that what would really make me 100% satisfied would be to have someone clean my apartment and have sex with me.

A: That's ridiculous! How could you assume that meant anything moronic like that?

F: Because it said so, right in the ad!

A: No, it didn't! Our satisfaction guarantee applies only to the quality of work we do cleaning your house. That's it!

F: (rifling through a stack of paper on an end table, pulling one out and handing it to Angie) Explain this then.

A: What? This?

F: That is your ad from the newspaper, is it not?

A: Yes, but what... (looking at the ad closely) oh, come on...

F: Ah-ha! See? See?

A: You wrote that on there.

F: No, I didn't.

A: You did. They don't print newspaper ads in blue ballpoint pen.

F: Just read it.

A: (reading) "Angie's Aces Cleaning Service. We clean any house or apartment, top to bottom, one hundred percent satisfaction guaranteed. All our service comes up aces."

F: Hey, you didn't read the whole thing!

A: You mean the scribble in blue ink that says: "Including having sex with me"?

F: Yeah, that part.

A: I need to leave.

F: Well, could you at least clean the place up before you go?

A: NO!!

F: Jeez... calm down... it's not like I was asking you to...

A: Shut up! Shut up! Don't bring that up again!

F: Okay... okay.

A: You're disgusting!

(she exits, slamming the door behind her)

F: (pauses, walks to end table, takes out a whole handful of newspaper ads) Well, Frank, strike one, but it's a big city, and there are a lot of cleaning services.

(selects one from the stack, grabs a blue pen, writes on the ad, then picks up the phone and starts dialing the number)

F: Yes, hi, I saw your ad in the newspaper, and I'm really in desperate need of your services...

(Frank continues, mouthing the conversation)

(lights fade out)


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