Tag Archive: theater


A dimly lit Taco Bell.

GERALD

What kind of Christmas tacos do you have?

 

CLERK

Christmas what?

 

GERALD

You know, pine tree pollo, eggnog asada? What flavors?

 

CLERK
I’m gonna barf.

(runs off)

 

GERALD
Bastards! I know a war on Christmas when I see one!

 

CURTAIN

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A dimly lit Taco Bell.

ALEX
Wrapped in a thick flour shell it includes ground beef and sour cream.

 

CLERK

What’s your order?

 

ALEX

Yes, in the form of a question.

 

CLERK
Are you okay, homes?

 

ALEX

Time’s up. We were looking for ‘What is a chalupa?’

 

CLERK
I’m getting security.

A dimly lit Taco Bell.

 

KETTLEBAUM

You seen any suspicious tacos ‘round here?

LISETTE
We don’t serve no other kind.

KETTLEBAUM
(flashes photo)

I’m looking for a special loser.

LISETTE
(gasps)

Felipe! I ain’t seen that taco since the Quincy riots. Tell me he’s okay!

KETTLEBAUM

None of us is okay, lady. None of us.

CURTAIN

The Dornstadt home. A storm rages outside.

HELGA

You have brought the chicken cupcakes?

 

HORST

Why would I bring cupcakes to a chicken?

 

HELGA

No, the chicken-flavored cupcakes, numb brain.

 

HORST

Oh, they were sold out.

 

HELGA
Always. Always they are sold out.

 

CURTAIN

Therese throws down a large steak knife.

 

THERESE

(tearful)

Why do you stare at me so, Alphonse?

 

ALPHONSE

It’s just as my father always said.

 

THERESE

Machine wash warm?

 

ALPHONSE
Never love a pumpkin hater.

 

Alphonse takes his pumpkin away.

 

CURTAIN

Trude holds up the prize pumpkin.

TRUDE

How long was you planning to keep this pumpkin hid?

CLIFF

Until sich time as you’d treat it proper.

TRUDE
A real man don’t hide his pumpkins!

CLIFF

(awestruck)
That’s why I never saw daddy’s vegetation.
CURTAIN

Lisette plays with a cracked baby doll.

NANNY

(sternly)

I have bad news, Lisette.

 

LISETTE
Is it about my dead hamster?

NANNY

(tauntingly)

I will no longer ready you those Pippi Longstocking tales.

LISETTE
(stares out the window)

It is all coming true.

 

CURTAIN

A dimly lit Taco Bell.  ESTELLE sways to the counter.

 

ESTELLE
(wig askew)

Make mine a double.

 

PEPE points to a sign.

 

PEPE
Like to try our new meat lover’s taco?

 

ESTELLE
Don’t tempt me, honey child!

 

PEPE

Miss, you’re getting lipstick on my poncho.

 

CURTAIN

The Theater of the Tiny

As they made their way toward the Theater of the Tiny, Alan had to conceal his skepticism.  Deirdre was so excited by the entire concept of really, really small drama that it was almost infectious.  He didn’t want to spoil her enthusiasm with his well-honed, cosmopolitan world-weariness.  After all, he’d seen Japanese noh drama, Baroque French masques and Sino-Senegalese performance art.  The theater could hold few surprises for a man of his experience.

“I’ve always thought regular drama was too large,” Deirdre was saying.  “It was a theory of mine, ever since I was twenty-three.  So the subtlety of this tiny drama just blew my mind.”  Her eyes lit up at the memories of the spectacular tininess.  “Their revival of Anna Christie had this amazing miniscule seaport set.  I just imagined crawling into one of those tiny boats like I could sail off on a tiny globe-spanning ocean.”

“And I suppose they drink tiny drinks in the bar scene?”

“You have no idea how skillfully they do it.  A thoughtless actor would just down a tiny drink with one normal-size sip, leaving nothing in the glass for additional sipping through the remainder of the scene.  But these actors of tiny drama, they measure their sips ever so carefully to fit into the entire tiny world of the piece.  Yet they do it in a way that makes the sips look totally natural in their miniature plane of existence.”  Deirdre made size gestures with her hands, bringing her fingers nearly together to show various extremities of tininess.  “Watching the performance, I feel like I’m becoming a small ant, watching professional ant performers, only incredibly well-trained ant performers with great enunciation that have the emotional range of a Katherine Hepburn or a Robert Mitchum.”

Alan raised his eyebrows.  “How do these actors even get into tiny acting?  I mean, you must have to meet some demanding physical requirements…”

Deirdre grasped his arm quickly with the urgency of a girl thinking he’d completely misunderstood.  “That’s just it.  Everything is done with such mastery that the actor’s physical size is irrelevant.  Just through their performance they evoke in the audience the essence of the tiny.”

“So what you’re saying is that their motions…”

“It’s not even just in the motions.” Deirdre fixed him with an intense look, her eyes turning to him at the same time that they seemed to slightly recede.  “It’s in their entire persona.  They even have to make their eyes tinier, to psychically shrink down their corneas to an appropriate dimension, to match the tininess of the piece.”

“You say tininess of the piece, but surely the play’s the same size.  If they do Macbeth, the play isn’t any smaller.”

“Not in any textual way, no, but the characters are reflected through an entirely tiny lens.  It’s almost as though you need to squint a little to see the small Banquo getting murdered.”

Alan gave her a playful elbow jab.  “Yes, the sad death of little Banquette.”

Deirdre just looked at him blankly.  They were getting closer to the theater, the Tiny Drama banners popping up here and there, but Alan seemed no closer to understanding.  “You’re making jokes.  You just don’t get it, do you?  Tininess can be tragic, Alan.  In fact, Tiny Drama Macbeth was much more moving than full-size Macbeth when I saw it in New York, even with live horses and dogs.”

“Well, if they ever do tiny Death of a Salesman, let me know, because I’d love having the chance to overlook the entire inconspicuous thing.”

Deirdre was at a breaking point.  Her lipstick was just the right shade of livid red to express her outrage.  “You see these Tiny tickets?” she demanded, holding out the passes she’d acquired at a miniature price.  “There were two of them, but they’re so small, one just slipped through my fingers.”  Deirdre let a miniscule pink ticket fall from her hand down into the normal-sized, rain-filled gutter at their feet.  “I’d rather concentrate on this Tiny performance by myself than sit next to a snide, snipping size snob.  I’ll see you back in boring old regular-size world, Alan.  I’m going to the land of the tiny!”

With that Deirdre stalked off, joining the lively stream of enthusiastic patrons pouring down the ramp into the Theater of the Tiny like busy brown squirrels diminishing in the distance as they ran down an angular hallway.

Alan tsked to himself, checked his smart phone and smiled.  The Theater of the Tiny could wait.  He had a complementary ticket to the new Cirque du Chien show, Humongo Venti Grostesqurie.  “Now that’s entertainment,” he said in satisfaction.

 

 

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A desolate parking lot.  Two beat-up American cars are parked next to a Laundromat.

TIDI comes out of the Laundromat holding a huge basket of clothes and heads toward the larger car.  She’s overweight, wearing hip huggers and a loud print blouse.  She drops the basket on the ground and shouts back toward the Laundromat.

TIDI

Whites done dryin’?

HUPE

(off-stage)

Not yet.

Tidi takes a cigarette from her purse and lights up.

TIDI
(shouting)

You ‘member that scrawny little amputee monkey we saw at the zoo?  That sure was a pathetic specimen!  Eloise, she always did have a thing for monkeys.  Not that there was nothin’ bizarre about it.  She just loved to see ’em, swinging tree to tree.  Watched those monkey shows on the cable almost every day. You foldin’ them undies yet?

HUPE
(off-stage)
Ain’t done yet.  In the dryer.

TIDI

(shouting)

Jesus and the Lord above, that is the slowest dryer in the whole darn laundrymat.  Why d’you always pick the slowest, Hupe?

Tidi takes a long drag on her cigarette.

TIDI
(shouting)
You were never no good at the laundry, that’s the Lord’s truth.  How many times did you ruin Hupe Jr.’s track outfit?  How many, Hupe?

HUPE

(off-stage)

I don’t know, Tidi.

TIDI

(shouting)

It was a blamed nuisance, and a cost!  That boy has enough troubles in this world, what with his skew-eye and short thumb, and you go and make his shorts pink as the day is long! What kind of a dad is that, Hupe?

BURNY, a fat, bald Scot, runs up to Tidi with a large butcher knife and stabs her in the right thigh three times.  Blood spurts out.  Tidi screams pathetically.  Burny runs off.

Tidi collapses and rolls into the gutter at the curb.

TIDI
(screaming)

Hupe!  Hupe!

HUPE

(off-stage)
No, they ain’t done dryin’ yet, Tidi!  Shut your trap!

TIDI
(screaming)

Help me, Hupe!

HUPE
(off-stage)
I’m doin’ what I can!

TIDI
Jesus, Lord almighty in that heaven.  What did I ever do to fall in a gutter, bleeding like a headless chicken?

Another geyser of blood spurts out.  The lights in the laundry flicker and slowly dim.

TIDI

I washed so many clothes in this laundrymat.  Washed ’em til they was bare of thread and dim of color.  Lord, how many times did I watch them dryers spinning.  Around and around.  Then around some more.  It’s like some stupid chimp, chasing his own tail.  How much change . . . How much change . . .

(screaming)

 Hupe!

HUPE

(off-stage)

These undies ain’t even clean, Tidi.  What kinda shit-ass detergent did you buy this time?

TIDI

(weeping)

The undies ain’t even clean.  Ain’t even clean.

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