Play #20 – PERFORMANCE FART

PERFORMANCE FART

Lights up: A MAN writhes on the ground in pain. He screams. A WOMAN enters, walking by, at first ignoring the man.

MAN
Help me! Help! Help me, please!

The Woman turns back to him. She approaches tentatively.

WOMAN
Are you alright?

MAN
I think I’m dying! Help!

WOMAN
How are you dying?

MAN
All over! I have pain all over!

WOMAN
Okay, let me call an ambulance.

She takes out her phone and dials.

WOMAN
Hello, 911 –

The man springs up.

WOMAN
Oh my god –

MAN
See! I’m fine! I’m not a sick, dying man! I’m a performance artist! This was performance art, you fucking idiot! You thought I was dying, but I was showing you performance art! I was showing you how uncaring and stupid society is!

He punches the woman in the face and runs off, laughing.

WOMAN
Ow! Oh my god! (into the phone) I’m not sure what the fuck just happened to me. I think I’m enlightened or something?

ANOTHER MAN enters.

ANOTHER MAN
Are you alright, miss?

WOMAN
Get the fuck away from me!

She runs offstage. Blackout.

© Eileen Tull

Play #18 – THIS HAPPENED TODAY

THIS HAPPENED TODAY

Lights up. A bus. EILEEN sits facing the front of the bus. THE GIRL sits directly behind Eileen, facing the opposite direction. They ride. A MAN approaches the Girl and sits next to her.

A MAN
How are you today?

THE GIRL
I’m fine.

A MAN
That’s good. Do you live around here?

THE GIRL
I live in a neighborhood.

A MAN
Oh that’s good. Me too.

Silence. Eileen starts paying attention to their conversation.

A MAN
Do you jog?

THE GIRL
What?

A MAN
Do you jog or run? Are you a runner?

THE GIRL
Oh, I don’t know. Sometimes I guess.

A MAN
I ask because you look like you keep your body in good shape.

THE GIRL
Okay.

Eileen is uncomfortable, but at a loss as to what to do.

A MAN
What are you up to today? Out to the beach?

THE GIRL
No, I’m going to work.

A MAN
Ah, you work. Do you work in the hotel business?

THE GIRL
No.

A MAN
Where do you work?

THE GIRL
A salon.

A MAN
A hair salon?

THE GIRL
Yes.

A MAN
That’s a good business to be in. Women are always trying to look beautiful. (He laughs) You’re very beautiful.

THE GIRL
Thank you.

A MAN
My name’s Bernie. (Silence) What’s your name?

THE GIRL
Don’t worry about it.

A MAN
Can I take you to dinner sometime?

THE GIRL
No.

ANOTHER WOMAN enters from the front of the bus. She taps the Girl on the shoulder.

ANOTHER WOMAN
Do you know him?

THE GIRL
No.

ANOTHER WOMAN
Are you okay?

THE GIRL
Yeah.

ANOTHER WOMAN
Sure?

THE GIRL
Yeah.

Another Woman makes eye contact at Eileen.

ANOTHER WOMAN
I saw him eyeballin’ her ass when she got on and then he follows her back here to sit next to her. No, sir.

A man turns to look at her.

ANOTHER WOMAN
Yeah, I’m talking about you. I saw you looking at her. I have four granddaughters. I see you.

A MAN
Why don’t you mind your own business?

ANOTHER WOMAN
Don’t worry, I got your picture. I took your picture.

Another Woman and The Girl start to exit.

EILEEN
Thank you for saying something. (to the Girl) I’m sorry. Are you okay?

The Girl shrugs. The two women exit. Eileen rides the bus, back to back with A Man. They ride the bus.

Blackout.

© Eileen Tull

Play #17 – IN HEAT

IN HEAT

Lights up on MAGGIE and SHAY, lying in bed. They have as little clothing on as possible. It’s so hot. A fan feebly blows air onto them.

MAGGIE
It’s so hot.

SHAY
Mm-hmm.

They do not move. 

MAGGIE
It’s so hot.

SHAY
Mm-hmm.

MAGGIE
There’s nothing else to say.

SHAY
Mm-hmm.

MAGGIE
(incredulously)
It’s just…so…hot.

They do not move. 

MAGGIE
We should move someplace colder.

SHAY
It’ll get cold.

MAGGIE
But someplace more temperate. Like Seattle.

SHAY
It rains nine months out of the year in Seattle.

MAGGIE
Thanks.

SHAY
It’ll get cold again. And then you’ll say ‘oh, it’s too cold, let’s move someplace more temperate, warmer, like Florida!’ and then it’ll get hot again and you’ll bring up Seattle and so on and so on.

MAGGIE
You’re planning on sticking around through another summer.

SHAY
Through all the summers and all the winters and all the temperance until the world melts into nothingness due to global warming.

MAGGIE
That’s sweet.

They kiss. They kiss harder and more passionately. They break away.

MAGGIE
It’s way too hot for that.

SHAY
It really is.

MAGGIE
Do you wanna get an air conditioning unit?

SHAY
Mm-hmm.

Blackout.

 

© Eileen Tull

Play #16 – PRESENT

PRESENT

Lights up on THE ARTIST sitting in a chair. SHE walks in and circles the Artist, who stares straight ahead.

SHE
Do you really think that you can call yourself an artist just you make art? Is that what really truly makes you an artist? The mere act of creating art?

The Artist is silent.

SHE
Art can be measured and it can be bought and it can be bad. It can be terrible. So are you truly an artist if you’re creating terrible art?

The Artist is silent. 

SHE
And not everybody needs art. Not everybody wants it! The plumbers and teachers and fathers and mothers and taxidermists and surgeons and file cabinets, they don’t all need art. But they do need to do their fucking job so that the city doesn’t come to a standstill. Can you do that? Can you move the city to a standstill? Can you do anything effective?

The Artist stirs.

SHE
See? See, now I’m getting to you. I’m scratching off the skin, past the surface, and getting down to the heart of the matter. Your uselessness. Your lack of contribution. You unnecessity.

The Artist rises. The Artist takes She in her arms and they begin to dance to no music. Slowly and closely at first, then the dance expands, a faster pace, a guttural chanting begins. She is taken over by the dance. Faster and faster, She dances hard and strong. The Artist stops dancing. She continues. The Artist watches. The Artist exits. She reaches the end of the dance. She breathes. She breathes. She inhales and centers herself. She sits in the chair.

Blackout.

© Eileen Tull

Play #15 – COUNTDOWN

COUNTDOWN

Lights up on E furiously typing. OTHER E stands further away, leaning against a wall, flipping a coin in the air.

 OTHER E
Number fourteen, huh?

E does not answer.

OTHER E
You’ll never make it.

E tries to ignore Other E.

OTHER E
You’ve got seventeen more to go in – (Other E looks at a bare wrist) – six days. Give up, little one. You’ll never make it. You’re only on fourteen. You’ll never make it.

E finishes typing.

E
(with triumph)
Fifteen.

OTHER E
(sullenly)
Clock’s ticking.

Other E exits. E continues typing.

Blackout.

© Eileen Tull

Play #14 – I JUST WANT THE FANTASY

I JUST WANT THE FANTASY

Lights up on EILEEN and THAT ONE GUY, staring at each other intently.

EILEEN
I-

She breathes.

EILEEN
I just-

She swallows her breath and her pride. 

EILEEN
I love you. I just really love you. Which is a crazy thing to say, because first of all, you don’t love me, and I really think it’s impossible to love someone who doesn’t love you, it’s not a pure love, but a different kind of love, but I love, I really, really love you and I don’t know what to do about it. I’m whiny and terrible, but I would make you laugh and make you feel all the good inside of you and teach you and learn from you and we would be great parents and I want to build a house with you, not just a home, a metaphorical place to feel comfort, I want to build a house with hammer and nails and saws and you and your strong calloused hands. And I want to grow into an old, shriveled lady sitting next to you on a porch, the old shriveled man, and our ear lobes will sag and our skin will flake off and we won’t even be able to hear or see each other, but I’ll know that you’re there, because I love you, I love you, I love you so hard that I could bang my head against it. I love you so deeply, I’m drowning. I love you so fully that I am the night sky enveloping the earth, then I become the rosy-fingered dawn, peeling myself off the earth for the new day. I love you. All the love I have in my body, even my fingernails and cuticles, it’s all for you. I love you.

THAT ONE GUY
You really don’t.

Pause. She’s tired.

EILEEN
(sighing)
You’re right.

That One Guy exits. He’s not real anyway.

Blackout.

 

© Eileen Tull

Play #13 – REAL WOMEN

REAL WOMEN

Lights up on MARY and SUSAN, two big women.

MARY (to audience)
Overweight.

SUSAN
Big-boned.

MARY
Heavy.

SUSAN
Fat.

MARY
We just want to be treated normally.

SUSAN
We just want to stop thinking about body politics every day.

MARY
We just want to be respected as humans.

SUSAN
As women.

MARY
By women.

SUSAN
We’re all humans.

THERESA, a thin woman, enters.

THERESA
(sincerely)
I think what you’re talking about it is pretty great.

SUSAN
Shut up, skinny bitch!

MARY
Real women have curves, whore!

Theresa hangs her head and exits.

SUSAN
We just want to be treated with respect.

Blackout.

© Eileen Tull

Play #12 – THIS HAPPENS EVERY DAY

THIS HAPPENS EVERY DAY

Lights up on BETH, a plus sized girl. Ugh, I hate that term, but if you don’t use it, a big girl won’t get cast and then it looks like A Fucking Chorus Line up there with all those tiny bodies. So Beth is onstage and she’s probably not thin, who gives a fuck, but that’s part of the stage picture. Beth is waiting at a bus stop. A DUDE enters. I’m not naming him, because he’s not, like, a real human being. The Dude walks by Beth but then decides to come back.

DUDE
How are you today, sweetheart? You look beautiful today.

Beth is silent, stares straight ahead.

DUDE
Hey, honey, I’m talking to you.

Beth stares.

DUDE
Don’t be a bitch, I’m just trying to start a conversation.

Beth stares. 

DUDE
(getting angry)
Look, you cunt, I’m just trying to talk to you. I just wanted to tell you that you look nice today, and that I would fuck you, based on what you look like at the present moment, like if you were into it, we could go around the corner into the alley, and I could fuck you up against the brick wall while the rats watched, but, like, only if you were into it, because I’m not like a rapist, I’m a nice guy, I’m just trying to pay you a compliment you fat bitch, you know how compliments work, slit? You must not get a lot of compliments, with your big fat floppy tits. (pause) I’m trying to be a nice guy. (pause) You’re a bitch. You’re a bitter, fat fucking bitch. I’m just being nice.

Beth, still stone-faced, takes out a blowgun. She shoots a poison dart at him, hitting him in the neck. The Dude screams and falls to the ground, writing in agony until he dies. Beth watches him die. She looks for the bus.

BETH
Ah, fuck it. Taxi!

She gestures for a taxi. Blackout.

 

© Eileen Tull