Friday, February 03, 2006

A Play In 1 Act

Friday morning 10-something am
La Femme's office cube

The setting: A desk, a potted plant, a girl behind a computer masking some obvious disgruntlement over something. A cell phone lies next to her keyboard. The phone rings.

Girl, our heroine of this little story, reaches for it, then pauses for a moment, her hand hovering just over the phone. She picks it up, glances briefly at the caller id and suddenly starts to frown. Then she smiles a smile of quiet satisfaction. I have got you now. Now you are going to pay.

Girl, speaking nonchalantly on the phone: "Hello."

Disembodied male voice: "Hey, it's me. It's John."

Girl: "Oh, hi John. How are you doing?" Nice, polite, indifferent.

Disembodied male voice, faltering a little as a sudden chill sweeps over him: "Good, good. Hey, I called you. I don't know if you got it." His voice trails off. "Just wanted to make sure... uh, How's your forehead?"

Girl, still nice, polite, indifferent: "Fine. Getting better. You?"

Disembodied male voice, cheering up a little at this small sign of humanity in Girl: "Not too bad. I have been telling everyone I got into fight with a biker named Bubba." Laughs at his own joke. Then stops abruptly as no reciprocating laughter joins him.

Disembodied male voice, speaking again: "Look, you are probably busy ..."

Girl, interrupting, suddenly alert, ignoring everything else: "What do you mean you called?"

Disembodied male voice: "I called you Wednesday. See how you were doing and ... I left you a message on your cell. Didn't you get it?"

My English teacher told me that good short stories and short plays share two things in common. Abrupt beginnings and abrupt endings. So, in the interest of abruptness, we will end this play here and return back to 1st-person narrative.

I have a problem with cell phones. I hate them. The last time I charged mine was two weeks ago and if it wasn't for a near-death experience a couple of days ago (an SUV tried to kill me) I wouldn't have charged my phone last night. Actually, that's not the reason I charged it. I did it so I could upload the song in my last post. Goes to show. I have my priorities in order.

I finally check my messages. One from John Wednesday afternoon telling me it was the most fun he had on a date.

Figures. Beautiful and crazy.

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