#31plays31days Y5 #24. The Truth about Love Songs

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“The Truth about Love Songs” by Paul Hagen

 

BRUCE, a middle-aged songwriter with money, is sitting in an office prominently decorated with shiny framed records and pictures of him posing next to performing artists. He shakes his head, sighs and presses a button on his phone.

 

BRUCE

Darlene, I’m gonna need to see you for a minute. Can you come on in?

 

DARLENE (over the intercom)

I’ll be right in, Mr. Bellbottom.

 

DARLENE, an unassuming, mousey woman in her thirties enters, excitedly gripping a pad and pen. She clearly adores BRUCE.

 

DARLENE

What can I do for you, Mr. Bellbottom?

 

BRUCE

Well you can start by setting aside that pad and pen, Darlene. You won’t be needing them today.

 

DARLENE

Are you sure, Mr. Bellbottom? Because sometimes you say that, and then the lyrics just start pouring out of you, and it really would be a shame to miss any of them. They’re so good.

 

BRUCE

Well that’s real nice of you to say, Darlene, but I’m afraid that’s just the problem. There aren’t anymore lyrics pouring out of me these days.

 

DARLENE

You’ve had dry spells before, Mr. Bellbottom. All great artists do.

 

BRUCE

I thought that for a while, too, until I finally thought this instead: You see,  I write love songs, Darlene. I’ve written for the best: Whitney Dallas and Britney Swords, Mariah Putdown and Celine D. Off. And some of them, I like to think, were some pretty good love songs.

 

DARLENE

The best.

 

BRUCE

But I don’t have anything else to give them anymore. I’ve rhymed love with dove, glove, shove, above and, on one unfortunate occasion, thereof. I’ve compared love to standing inside a house burning down and lying under a gushing waterfall. I’ve compared it to falling, to flying, to seeking, to finding, to learning how to see and to going blind.

 

DARLENE

And it made so many good songs.

 

BRUCE

Darlene, how long you been working for me?

 

DARLENE

Going on ten years, Mr. Bellbottom.

 

BRUCE

I think it’s time you called me Bruce.

 

DARLENE coquettishly takes off her glasses.

 

DARLENE

Sure, Bruce.

 

BRUCE

And I think it’s time you learned the truth about love songs.

 

DARLENE

What’s that?

 

BRUCE

Well love — it’s not a real thing. It’s one of these crazy mixed up ideas we’ve invented to make a basic human need — in this case, the need to participate in the mating process — into something that we can feel less like animals about. So when we write love songs and we compare love to a bunch of real things — things that you can actually feel and smell and touch and see — it makes love seem more real. And I just think , on one hand, that I’ve run out of stuff to compare it to. And, on the other hand, I’m not so interested in making believe that love is real.

 

DARLENE

Mr. Bellbottom — Bruce — I hate to disagree with you more than anything in the world — but, the thing is, I always have thought love is real. And it’s beautiful to compare it to other things because it’s one of those things that’s so big, that it’s hard to put into words. But maybe you could keep trying. Maybe if you had love in your life, real love, and you just described what it was like — maybe you could write the best songs you’ve ever written.

 

BRUCE

That’s a beautiful sentiment, Darlene. Unfortunately, it’s also not gonna change my mind. You can go clear out your things. I’m gonna close up these offices and go visit a dude ranch I’ve been meaning to check out.

DARLENE

Please, Bruce. You can’t. Even if I wasn’t— Even if I didn’t— The world needs you. It needs your songs. Love is real, whether or not you believe it. You help make love real.

 

BRUCE

Now, I can tell you’re upset and this is a lot to absorb. And, listen, I’m gonna put a little something extra in your final paycheck to help tide you over until you can find somewhere else to work. And I want you to know you can feel free to call me.

 

DARLENE

Really? You mean that?

 

BRUCE

Sure. For a recommendation. Or, you know, career advice.

 

DARLENE

I see.

 

Dejected, DARLENE walks toward the door but gets up the nerve to turn back one more time.

 

DARLENE

Won’t you please reconsider? Even writing just one more song?

 

BRUCE

Now, Darlene, I’ve done my considering thoroughly. At this point, I would just feel silly. It would be like writing a song about, well, any number of imaginary things – like peace or justice or heaven.

 

DARLENE

You don’t believe in peace or justice or heaven or love?

 

BRUCE

Only because they’re just excuses to take a break from fighting, punish people who bother us, not be afraid of dying and screw.

 

DARLENE

Well I hope that one day you do feel love — not the pretend love you’ve been writing about all these years but real love that makes you want to walk a million miles just to breathe the same air as somebody special or to spend every last bit of money in your bank account just to make them smile. And when you do, I hope you write a song about it. And I hope you’ll share it with me.

 

BRUCE

Sounds maybe like you’re the one who ought to be writing the love songs, Darlene.

 

DARLENE

I guess you’re right. Thank you, Mr. Bellbottom.

 

BRUCE

Now, I told you, Darlene. You can call me Bruce.

 

DARLENE

I would, but — I don’t believe in Bruce.

 

DARLENE exits and BRUCE leans back in his chair until finally the chair tips backward and he clatters to the floor.

 

BRUCE

Darlene? Hey, Darlene? Darlene!!!

 

Lights fade to black.

 

END OF PLAY

 

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#31plays31days Y5 #23. Unaugmented

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“Unaugmented” by Paul Hagen

THREE WOMEN sit at a table in a restaurant, their faces covered by menus. BARBIE lowers her menu to reveal that she has comically enormous fake breasts.

 

BARBIE

Why anyone would get her breasts done, I just do not see.

I think men much prefer an unaugmented mammary.

 

BETTY lowers her menu to reveal a face that is a Botox-induced frozen mass.

 

BETTY

Why anyone would pump her face with poison, I don’t know.

So paralyzed, how can they smize and let their feeling show?

 

LILA lowers her menu to reveal that she has had some truly heinous lip implants. It should appear as though someone has sliced them open, installed several goldfish into them and roughly stitched them closed again. They should also be clearly infected, and as she speaks, occasionally throw off sprays of blood .

 

LILA

And what’s the deal with all these people plumping up their lips?

Leave them alone, and save the plastic for your fingertips!

 

A WAITRESS approaches the table and nods at BARBIE and BETTY with a smile but then attempts to stifle her horror when she notices LILA.

 

WAITRESS

Hello, there, ladies, it’s my pleasure to serve you today.

Might I get any apps or drinks prepared to bring your way?

 

BARBIE, BETTY and LILA pore over their menus, with LILA occasionally vibrating her lips in such a way as to bloody the menu enough that she has to clean off with her napkin. She attempts to nonchalantly shake excess blood off the napkin, forcing the WAITRESS to jump out of the line of fire.

 

BARBIE

Well I’m not hungry yet but water would be rather nice.

 

BETTY

Me too.

 

LILA

Me three.

 

As she pronounces the word “three” LILA’s lips burst open releasing spurts of blood all over herself, BARBIE and BETTY, the table and the WAITRESS

 

WAITRESS

Okay.

The WAITRESS rushes away. LILA calls after her.

 

LILA

But please… make mine with extra ice!!!

 

BARBIE gets her phone out her her purse and she and BETTY proceed to pose for a selfie as LILA attempts to staunch the flow of blood from her lips with the tablecloth and lights fade to black.

 

END OF PLAY

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#31plays31days Y5 #22. Size Six Pink Pump

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“Size Six Pink Pump” by Paul Hagen

 

KAREN sits in a shoe boutique, being waited on by THEODORE, who is attempting to wrestle a too-small pink pump pump onto her foot. Despite both of their best efforts, they can’t get it on and they both finally fall backward panting.

 

THEODORE

Miss… Are you sure… I can’t interest you… in a larger size?!

 

KAREN

No!!! No, that’s my size. That’s always been my size. That’s GOT to be my size.

 

THEODORE

It’s nothing to be ashamed of ma’am. As a woman’s body evolves, the shape of her feet changes. Especially with motherhood–

 

KAREN gasps.

 

KAREN

I’m single!

 

THEODORE

Even single motherhood–

 

KAREN

I do not have ANY motherhood!

 

THEODORE

Well, even aging without motherhood–

 

KAREN

Aging? AGING?!

 

THEODORE

With all due respect, ma’am, we are all aging.

 

KAREN

Well, my feet aren’t allowed to age!

 

THEODORE

Why on earth not.

 

KAREN

Because…

 

The lights dim and a spotlight flares on KAREN.

 

KAREN

Many years ago… but not THAT many years ago… I was a young girl, fresh out of college, looking for my path in life. On my way to the subway one night, I took a wrong turn and ended up on a dark street. I could swear I felt someone following me; so I ducked into the first open storefront that I saw.

 

The FORTUNE TELLER enters in an eerie blue fog, gazing into a crystal ball.

 

KAREN

It turned out to be a fortune teller.She offered to tell me my fortune, and she quoted me a very fair rate, and, frankly, at that moment, I would have paid a whole lot more not to have to go back out into the street and deal with whatever was waiting for me. So I settled in to enjoy the show. And then she proceeded to tell me… everything!

 

Lights up to full.

 

THEODORE

Everything?

 

Lights back to dim with spot on KAREN.

 

KAREN

EVERYTHING!!! What my first job would be… What I would name my dog… But most importantly of all, she told me that she had a very clear vision of the day I’d meet the man was going to marry. She said he would be tall.

 

A spotlight shines on THEODORE who stands, revealing that he is, indeed, quite tall.

 

KAREN

And blonde.

 

THEODORE runs his fingers through his glossy blonde mane.

 

KAREN

And that he’d be slipping a size six pink pump onto my foot.

 

THEODORE’s eyes bug out a little as he realizes that there, in his hand, he is holding a size six pink pump.

 

THEODORE

Wow!

 

KAREN

I know! Specific as hell, right?

 

THEODORE

Specific as hell…

 

KAREN

And that’s why, no matter how much weight I have gained or how many blisters I have gotten, no matter how many puddles of filth I’ve had to wade through or ankles I’ve sprained, I wear a goddamn size six pump every day of my goddamn life. So that today could always be the day I meet the man I’m gonna marry!

 

THEODORE

Do you realize what this means?

 

KAREN

That we’re going to need to find some sort of lubricant?

 

THEODORE

No. But the Fortune Teller didn’t say you’d be wearing the pink pump — just that the man you’re going to marry would be putting it on you… Or maybe TRYING to put it on you.

 

KAREN

But why on earth would a man be TRYING to put a shoe on me that didn’t fit?

 

THEODORE motions to himself with the pink pump. Lights bump up to full as KAREN begins to laugh hysterically.

 

THEODORE

Oh, come on. Tall! Blonde! Pink pump! Size six pink pump!

 

KAREN

Oh, honey, come on. You’re a fucking shoe salesman.

 

THEODORE stares open-mouthed as Darlene Love’s “Today I Met the Boy I’m Gonna Marry” begins to play. KAREN puts on the well-worn pink pumps she’d arrived in, grabs her purse and exits as lights fade to black.

 

END OF PLAY

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#31plays31days Y5 #21. Like That When I Got Here

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“Like That When I Got Here” by Paul Hagen

 

LEROY, an old man in a janitor’s uniform is sitting back in a chair with his feet up on a desk in a large warehouse.

 

Behind him sit three conspicuous gigantic piles: one of WALNUT SHELLS, one of EGGSHELLS and one of BANANA PEELS.

 

A uniformed police OFFICER is taking notes on a pad as he interviews LEROY.

 

OFFICER

So the theft that you’ve reported is of one ton of walnuts, one ton of eggs and one ton of bananas?

 

LEROY

That’s right.

 

OFFICER

And what I’m looking at behind me are the remains of that theft?

 

LEROY

It would appear.

 

OFFICER

But you couldn’t say for sure?

 

LEROY

No, sir.

 

OFFICER

And why would that be?

 

LEROY

It was like that when I got here.

 

OFFICER

And does it strike you as odd that these, uh, thieves should have had their way with the, uh, contents of the stolen product and then, uh, clean up after themselves so carefully?

 

LEROY

Well, I couldn’t really speak to what motivated the thieves, officer.

 

OFFICER

And why is that?

 

LEROY

It was like that when I got here.

 

The OFFICER slams his notebook shut in annoyance.

 

OFFICER

Okay, I can see this is going nowhere. I’m gonna head back to the station and get started on the paperwork you’ll need for the insurance.

 

LEROY

Whatever you think is best.

 

OFFICER

But just between you and me, buddy. don’t you think it’s a little, uh, weird that walnuts and eggs and bananas are all being stored in the same warehouse?

 

LEROY

Well, I never really had much of an opinion about that.

 

OFFICER

Oh? Because it was like that when you got here?

 

LEROY

No, man. Because they’re all foods.

 

The OFFICER shakes his head and walks out of the warehouse. LEROY waits a moment and then shouts.

 

LEROY

All clear!

 

A FURRY IN A SQUIRREL COSTUME enters, places money on the desk in front of LEROY and then stands in front of the pile of nutshells. A FURRY IN A CHICKEN COSTUME enters, places money on the desk and stands in front of the eggshells. A FURRY IN A GORILLA COSTUME enters, places money on the desk and stands in front of the pile of banana peels.

 

LEROY

Go ahead. Do your worst.

 

LEROY counts his money and the FURRIES roll around in their respective piles of detritus as lights fade to black.

 

END OF PLAY

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#31plays31days Y5 #20. Fernanda Explain

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“Fernanda Explain” by Paul Hagen

 

We are at the wedding of MARCO and MAGDALENA, an event of Telenovelic proportions. MARCO and MAGDALENA stand, holding hands on the altar in front of the PRIEST at the front of the church. In the last row of a crowded church sit FERNANDA and DELFINA — two large, ornately dressed older women, FERNÁNDA and DELFINA.

 

PRIEST

If any of you has reason why these two should not be married, speak now or forever hold your peace.

 

ISABELLA, a pretty young woman in flowered hat jumps to her feet.

 

ISABELLA

I cannot be silent! I slept with the groom, and now I am pregnant!

 

MAGDALENA

I don’t care, Isabella. Sit down!

 

ISABELLA weeps dramatically into her handkerchief as she sinks back into her seat.

 

DELFINA

¡Ay Dios Mio! What just happened?!

 

FERNANDA

Fernanda explain: That girl? She sleeps with Marco. Now she’s pregnant.

 

DELFINA

This much is clear.

 

FERNANDA

And to make matter’s worse: she’s the florist!

 

DELFINA

No!

 

FERNANDA

Si!

 

MAGDALENA

Padre?

 

PRIEST

Ahem, if anyone ELSE has reason why these two should not be married, speak now or forever hold your peace.

 

ADELITA runs into the church from the hall downstairs, wearing an apron and crying.

 

ADELITA

I must speak, as well! I have also slept with the groom, and now I, too, am pregnant!

 

MAGDALENA

¡Silencio, Adelita! Get back downstairs and let me get married!

 

Adelita retreats toward the stairs, sobbing wretchedly.

 

DELFINA

¡Por favor! What is she even talking about?

 

FERNANDA

Fernanda explain: That girl? She is another one who sleeps with Marco. Now she is also another one with another one inside of her.

 

DELFINA

Well, I could hear that much!

 

FERNANDA

And to make matter’s worse: she’s the caterer!

 

DELFINA

No!

 

FERNANDA

Si!

 

MAGDALENDA

Padre?

 

PRIEST

AND if still others have reason why these two should not be married, speak now or forever hold your peace.

 

CAMILA stumbles up onto the altar wearing an impressively hideous gown in shocking pink.

 

CAMILA

Magdalena, I cannot let you get married without telling you that I have also slept with Marco. And now I, also, am pregnant.

 

MAGDALENA

Well then you can just get! The hell!! Out!!!

 

CAMILA walks down the aisle, sobbing epically.

 

DELFINA

¡Qué susto! I don’t understand!

 

FERNANDA

Fernanda explain: That girl? She also does the sleeping with Marco. Now she also does the having of his baby.

 

DELFINA

Well, that much I understand.

 

FERNANDA

And to make matter’s worse: she’s the maid of honor!

 

DELFINA

No!

 

FERNANDA

Si!

 

MAGDALENA

Padre?

 

DELFINA

But Fernanda, what I really need you to explain to me is this: Why would Magdalena still marry Marco if she knows that he sleeps with her and her and her and now she’s pregnant and she’s pregnant and she’s pregnant?

 

FERNANDA

Oh that’s easy. Fernanda explain: It’s because she’s pregnant!

 

As FERNANDA points to MAGDALENA, she turns to reveal that she is massively, almost-to-term pregnant. The traditional end-of-wedding organ music plays as the PRIEST blesses MARCO and MAGDELENA and they kiss; ISABELLA, ADELITA and CAMILA continue to weep hysterically. FERNANDA and DELFINA shake their heads at the shame of it all as lights fade to black.

END OF PLAY

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#31plays31days Y5 #19. Why We Don’t Go to the Zoo Anymore

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“Why We Don’t Go to the Zoo Anymore” by Paul Hagen

 

Little PIPPA comes bounding into the kitchen  — clutching her favorite stuffed animal — and tugs on the trouser leg of her POPPA, who is doing the dishes  in front of a window, outside of which stands a tree covered in colorful autumn leaves.

 

PIPPA

Poppa, please say it’s time to go back to the zoo.

There are so many animals for me and you

Left to see: Crocodiles! An Iguana! A gecko!

I’ll hold your hand. I promise that I won’t let go.

The boa constrictor and python will slither —

But I’ll be so brave. No I won’t even shiver.

The time to meet turtles is now! Now or never!

They live a long time, Poppa, but not forever!

 

POPPA

Little one, yes, I know you’re excited to see

Those scaly-skinned creatures you’ve learned there will be

At the zoo. But it’s autumn now. It’s time for school.

You’ve got homework to do, and you know that’s the rule.

School starts this time each year, princess. It’s not surprising.

It’s time for book-reading and essay-revising

And scribbling on maths ’til they’re done. That’s the reason:

We’ll go to the zoo again some other season.

 

PIPPA pouts and exits. The lights dim — except for out the window, where we see the leaves fall off the tree and snow begin to fall. When the lights rise again, POP is at the table fussing with billss and a laptop computer. PIPPA pulls a chair back from the table and sits next to him.

 

PIPPA

Poppa, now can we go to the zoo? Poppa, I

Really need to see birds you don’t get in our sky!

Let’s see something fly — something we never have saw!

Let’s greet egrets! High-five finches! Meet a macaw!

While the eagles make circles, we’ll watch a hawk dive!

Without seeing penguins play, I’m not alive!

Or perhaps, like in carols, a real turtle dove?!

Please take me to the zoo, Poppa. Show me some love!

 

POPPA

Princess, at school, I know, you may not have learned yet,

But the animals don’t like how cold it can get

In the winter. So many will go into hiding;

And if they’re not playing or climbing or gliding

Why visit them now and not when they’re more active:

Little one, just admit it, that’s much more attractive.

The sunshine will make every bird a performer

When we go to the zoo… and wait ‘til it gets warmer.

 

PIPPA pouts and walks away. The lights dim and fresh buds appear on the tree outside the window. When the lights rise again, POPPA is mopping the floor, occasionally pausing to rub his eyes and stifle a sneeze.. PIPPA is about to enter the kitchen but sees the wet floor, and so stands in the doorway.

 

PIPPA

It’s warm, Poppa. That means it’s time to go zooing.

Let’s see what the sloths and mongooses are doing,

A jaguar that jumps over and an armadillo,

A bear napping — using a rock as a pillow,

Hyenas that laugh, Poppa, and cheetahs cheating.

A big scary lion — we’ll go when he’s eating!!!

Stuck here, it’s like losing; the zoo is like winning!

Poppa, that’s where Tasmanian Devils go spinning!

 

POPPA

I know that it’s warm, princess. That I can tell,

But unfortunately Poppa’s not doing well.

It’s hay fever, my little one, as plants get greener;

They also make pollen, and there is no meaner

Thing to me. It gives me the sniffles and sneezes.

It makes my eyes itchy and— AH-CHOO! Oh, Jesus!

You’ve waited so patiently; you can hold on:

We’ll head to the zoo with my allergies gone.

 

PIPPA pouts and heads away from the kitchen.  The lights dim again, the tree leaves fill to a full, vibrant green as the world outside the window grows brighter. POPPA stares out the window as the lights rise again, and PIPPA enters the kitchen. She pulls a chair over from the table and uses it to clamber up onto the counter and address her father sternly. 

 

PIPPA

I waited through springtime and winter and fall.

Gotta go to the zoo now or we’ll miss it all!

Miss the rhino, the hippo,the zebra, the giraffe!

The seals and sea lions! The chimps – when they laugh!

Poppa, please I’ll be good. I’ll be SO well behaved.

And even if something went wrong, we’d be saved

By you, Poppa. I know you can do anything!

So now? To the zoo? Won’t you, both of us, bring?

 

POPPA shakes his head sadly and sighs, resigned.

 

POPPA

Can’t say no anymore. Instead here’s what I’ll do.

I’ll admit why we cannot go back to to the zoo.

See, the last time we went, you let go of my hand.

How it happened so quickly, I don’t understand.

You were with me one second then suddenly gone.

And you never came back… And the waiting goes on.

I keep hoping so hard you’ll walk back through the door.

And that’s why we don’t go to the zoo anymore.

 

The lights begin to flicker and PIPPA suddenly disappears, leaving only her stuffed animal behind in her spot. POPPA picks up the animal and grabs the edge of the counter as he collapses to the floor, cradling it to his chest and shaking his head sadly. He rocks back and forth as the lights continue to flicker until they suddenly blackout.
END OF PLAY

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#31plays31days Y5 #18. Burning

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“Burning” by Paul Hagen

 

Poolside at a beautiful European resort, JAKE — a pudgy, pale American — is sunning himself in a lounge chair. An alarm goes off on his smartwatch, and he obediently stands up and begins gathering up his things.

 

ALESSANDRO — looking tan, fit and beautiful — rushes over, wearing a swimsuit that displays his assets admirably, a gold chain on his neck and a towel over his shoulder.

 

ALESSANDRO

Aspetta! Volevo parlarti!

 

JAKE

Mi dispiace. Inglese, per favore?

 

ALESSANDRO speaks in heavily (but adorably) accented English.

 

ALESSANDRO

English? Of course! American, eh?

 

JAKE

Sì. I mean, yes. I mean— I am. And you are?

 

ALESSANDRO

The man you are staring at across the pool, eh?

 

JAKE

Oh. Oh, God. I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to insult you or make you uncomfortable or—

 

ALESSANDRO

No, no, no — you mistake me. You like what you see? Is no problem!

 

JAKE

Oh, thank you. I was worried— I mean, for a moment there, I thought—

 

ALESSANDRO

You think because you look at me like you want to kiss me, I want to hit you in you face?

 

JAKE

Something like that.

 

ALESSANDRO

Stop it! You crazy!

 

JAKE

Well, in that case, I should get going.

 

ALESSANDRO

Will you explain me? Why you running away? You are enjoying the view, eh?

 

JAKE

My skin is very sensitive. If I stay out for more than fifteen minutes at a time, I end up burning.

 

ALESSANDRO

Even with the uh, how you say, protezione solare?

 

JAKE

Yes, even with lots and lots of SPF lotion.

 

ALESSANDRO

Wow! This is not a problem for me.

 

JAKE

Evidently.

 

JAKE picks up his things to leave.

 

ALESSANDRO

You are not going to leave me without telling me why you are looking like you want to kiss me, eh?

 

JAKE

It’s not a mystery. You are a very handsome man. I’ve seen the way you Italians look at every woman that goes by. You know how it works.

 

ALESSANDRO

Yes, but you are looking in a different way. A way that’s more. You tell me. Favore?

 

ALESSANDRO places a couple of fingers on JAKE’s chin and raises his eyes so that they are staring at each other. JAKE shivers and pulls away.

 

JAKE

Fine. It’s going to sound silly but you look just like this guy I used to know, Alex.

 

ALESSANDRO

He look like me?

 

JAKE

Almost exactly. You could be twins.

 

ALESSANDRO

Gemelli? Veramente?

 

JAKE

I mean, I haven’t seen him in years ;so he would probably look older than you by now. And, I would guess, not as tan.

 

ALESSANDRO

And you kiss him?

 

JAKE

No. I… I wanted to. But he was straight. And dating a girl. They got married. And had kids.

 

ALESSANDRO

But you want to kiss him?

 

JAKE

I did. He had this way about him. He would look at you like you were the only person in the world. I remember, I went to a birthday party his girlfriend threw for him once. There were a bunch of guys there who he played soccer with — football. I don’t know if they were teasing him or me or what but they kept saying these things, intimating—

 

ALESSANDRO

Intimating?

 

JAKE

Hinting, I mean. That he had fooled around with other guys. That they had caught him in the locker room.

 

ALESSANDRO

Kissing boys?

 

JAKE

Well… doing something with boys. And I suspected, for a moment, that maybe— but I think that was wishful thinking.

 

ALESSANDRO

So you do not think he kiss boys?

 

JAKE

I do not.

 

ALESSANDRO

Then he and me are not twins like you say.

 

JAKE

Why?

 

ALESSANDRO

Because I kiss boys.

 

ALESSANDRO kisses JAKE — long and slow. Then he pulls away, leaving JAKE breathless. ALESSANDRO smiles roguishly. His accent disappears.

 

ALESSANDRO

Got you.

 

JAKE

What?

 

ALESSANDRO

I so got you, bro.

 

JAKE

Wait. What? Alex? It IS you?

 

ALESSANDRO

Yeah. We’re on vacation. Bridget is up in the room. The kids are with their grandparents. It’s so good to see you!

 

JAKE

I’m— I didn’t realize— I wouldn’t have told you—

 

ALESSANDRO

You wouldn’t have told me all those things? About me? If you knew it was me?

 

JAKE

Well it sounds ridiculous when you put it like that, but, no, I would not have.

 

ALESSANDRO

Why didn’t you tell me any of it before?

 

JAKE

Uh… because you were straight and dating someone?

 

ALESSANDRO

But you said yourself that you suspected—

 

JAKE

So what, Alex? So what! Even if you weren’t completely straight. Even if you did fool around with people other than your girlfriend. Even those soccer players really did catch you with, I’m assuming, one or more other gorgeous soccer players… The long and short of it is that you look like you and I look like me; so what hope would I have of getting anything from you? And if there wasn’t any hope of that, then why would I have told you one goddamned thing?

 

JAKE takes his things and hurries away from ALESSANDRO.

 

ALESSANDRO

I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to upset you. It’s actually really flattering to know you felt that way about me. And— and it was even nice kissing you.

 

JAKE

I have to go. I’m burning.

 

JAKE exits. ALESSANDRO stares after him as lights fade to black.
END OF PLAY

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