Glama, Act I, Scene 5

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A Full Length Musical Comedy by William Armstrong

Scene Five
Kosher Leprechaun, Sunday early afternoon
Lights come up on a section of the bar in a comedy nightclub. The club is closed to the public right now. Sean Steinberg, the club owner, is sitting at the bar. He stands to greet Jeff and some tour members as they enter from the wings.
JEFF
[to the tour members] Allow me to introduce the owner of L.A.'s greatest nightclub, Mr. Sean Steinberg. [to Sean] Sean, this is Don Richards, Marcy Blackburn, Sam Evans, and Kelli Klee. Looks like the rest of my tour went in search of restrooms.
SEAN
What do you feed these people? If I installed pay toilets I'd be as rich as Bill Gates. [to the tour members] Anyway, welcome to the Kosher Leprechaun. I'm very pleased to meet all of you. Any friend of Jeff's ...has my sympathy. Feel free to look around, try out the mikes, and get the feel of the place. You can see the stage right up there. And we've got the band over here if you'd like to rehearse. They swore on their mothers' army boots that they wouldn't do any drugs until at least 2:30 today.
Sean notices Marcy's camcorder and points to it.
SEAN (continued)
I'm sorry, Marcy, but it's against club rules to record in here. You might accidentally pick up some music from the band, and we'd probably get sued by anyone who had to listen to it.
DON
Is there any place we could use for a dressing room?
Sean nods and points to someone offstage.
SEAN
That gorgeous young lady is Stephani. She can show you what we laughingly call dressing rooms. She might even help you change your clothes if you asked real nice. I'll be right here talking to Jeff if you need anything.
Sean takes a lingering look at Kelli as the tour exits to look around the club. Sean and Jeff sit at the bar.
JEFF
Keep an eye on Kelli.
SEAN
Hah, I'll keep both eyes on Kelli.
JEFF
You can watch her, but that's all. She's under age, but I suspect she could find a way to convince the bartender that she's legal for liquor.
SEAN
I was going to donate my body to science, but I think Iíll give it to Kelli instead.
JEFF
You don't understand, Bluebeard. She's jail bait. [sings softly] "I am 16, going on 17."
SEAN
[incredulous] Get out of town on a bus!
JEFF
A coach.
SEAN
You're kidding. She's got to be at least 20! The harvest doesn't come together like that in just 16 summers.
JEFF
Sixteen. Believe it. But you're right. Any straight guy over the age of 18 would think she's fair game.
SEAN
Not just "fair". I'd say "good" or "excellent". [sigh] Okay, I'll watch out for her, but see if you can get her to come back again in two years.
JEFF
Your libido never stops, does it?
SEAN
It never even slows down, my friend. How about you? How's your love life? Do you want me to fix you up with Stephani? She's a 10!
JEFF
Is that her IQ?
SEAN
I'm surprised at you. You're awfully negative today, Mr. How-to-win-friends-and-influence-people. As the bartender said to the horse, "Why the long face?"
JEFF
I've been thinking about my life.
SEAN
Thinking about your life would depress me, too. But only because you're so damned successful.
JEFF
My dad died when he was 62. That could mean that I'm already past the halfway point in my life.
SEAN
The second half is going to be even better, big guy.
JEFF
Well, I'm thinking about a "better half". I hear that married men live longer.
SEAN
It just seems longer.
JEFF
Why am I discussing this with you? Two ex-wives doesn't qualify you as a marriage expert.
SEAN
Jeff, stop and think. "Marriage" isn't a word, it's a sentence.
JEFF
Would you stop with the old jokes?
SEAN
I'm on a roll. [calling to the drummer in the band] Hey, Jessie, give me a rim shot after everything I say. [we hear a rim shot] You got it. [rim shot again] Jessie. [rim shot] Give me a rim shot every time I say something funny.
We hear no rim shot this time. Sean nods his approval.
SEAN (continued)
Good. [to Jeff] Marriage is like a three-ring circus: engagement ring, wedding ring, and suffering. [silence] A man isn't complete until he's married - then he's finished.
Again, we hear no rim shot. Sean looks disapprovingly at Jessie.
SEAN (continued)
You know what they call a guy who hangs around with musicians? [pause] A drummer.
We hear a short, discordant clatter of drums (but no rim shot). Sean waves his hand toward the drummer, as if to say, "I give up."
JEFF
Don't you ever come up with any new jokes?
SEAN
All jokes are old, Jeff. If some ancient Roman centurion had only written down the jokes of his day, weíd probably recognize them. "An oracle, a priest, and a rabbi walk into a bar..." But enough of that! It looks like I've got to stop you from making a terrible mistake. I assume you're talking about Anita. Listen, Jeff, ...don't ...get ...married.
JEFF
But I love her.
SEAN
Okay, you love her. Thatís half of the formula. "Love Ďem and leave Ďem." Now itís time for the other half.
JEFF
What a heartless man you are, Sean. No wonder you've never found a soul mate.
SEAN
It has nothing to do with finding a soul mate, a perfect match. It has everything to do with maneuvering you into her trap. Sheís probably over there at the shop right now plotting how sheís going to domesticate you. Women are shrewd and devious. They're never in doubt. They have every move planned.
Lights come up on the Olvera street shop (stage left) where Anita and Carmen are chatting. Jeff and Sean freeze. Lights dim on stage right.
ANITA
I donít know what to do about Jeff.
CARMEN
Donít fall in love with his kind.
ANITA
What kind is that?
CARMEN
Men.
ANITA
Too late. I already love him. The question is: can I trust him?
CARMEN
[sympathetically] Oh, honey, [sarcastically] of course you CANíT.
Music begins for "The Marrying Kind".
CARMEN (continued)
You can tackle him and shackle him and drag him to the church,
But heíll pick the lock and take a walk and leave you in the lurch.
He can vanish into thin air like a genie.
Iím convinced the manís a regular Houdini.
Heís expert at escaping any ties that bind.
Heís not - no knot - the marrying kind.
Lights up on stage right. Anita and Carmen freeze. Jeff and Sean revive. Lights dim on stage left.
SEAN
Youíre a stallion sheís corralling. She will hitch you up to plows.
But you wonít destroy unbridled joy by taking wedding vows.
At the altar thereís a halter that youíre bound to.
Never let her build a holding pen around you.
Without a pen the marriage license goes unsigned.
{It} ísa cinch, youíre not the marrying kind.
JEFF
Men use bevírages for levírage as they strive to take their prize.
Women donít need booze; they win by using Love to cloud your eyes.
I must keep my senses clear as love is spreading
Or weíll raise our glasses as they toast our wedding.
I always wear my glasses, knowing love is blind.
You see, Iím not the marrying kind.
Lights up on stage left. Jeff and Sean freeze. Anita and Carmen revive. Lights dim on stage right.
ANITA
Evíry minute he is in it he enjoys the tourist mob.
Be it rental cars or movie stars, heís married to the job.
Now heís got me seeing stars of evíry pattern,
But the only rings I see are rings of Saturn.
Weíve never had a time when all the stars aligned.
I wish he were the marrying kind.
CARMEN
He's a tour guide, for Heaven's sake: the messiah of Tinseltown pilgrims. He only spends a few hours a week with you - and never on a Friday or Saturday night.
ANITA
He's awfully busy right now. Itís the tourist season.
CARMEN
Ha! If it's the tourist season, does that mean we can shoot them? Anita, when is it NOT the tourist season in Los Angeles?!? And another thing: He'll probably never have any money. Look at that car he drives.
ANITA
He asked me to move in with him. He said he'd get a place big enough for the girls and Mama, too. I just think it sends the wrong signal to the girls. I don't want them to think that it's okay to live with a man if you're not married.
CARMEN
But going with him on a "trial honeymoon" to Hawaii is perfectly acceptable?
ANITA
It's not the same.
CARMEN
Itís apparent youíre a parent with a pair of kids at play
If he marries you, he gets them, too, which frightens him away.
Just to give up other women never thrilled men,
But itís even worse to take on rearing children.
It isnít an idea he can get behind.
No, kid, heís not the marrying kind.
Lights up on stage right. Anita and Carmen freeze. Jeff and Sean revive. Lights dim on stage left.
SEAN
Evíry man agrees that families donít live as cheap as one.
Money disappears. You work for years, but wives leave you with none.
Ladies make you think that youíre a perfect matching
Brother, watch out for the strings that sheís attaching
Sheíll wrap you up with strings, but you can just unwind.
Relax, youíre not the marrying kind.
JEFF
A perfect match. How am I supposed to know if she is my perfect match?
SEAN
Playing with matches can be dangerous. Jeff, the year before last you got pretty serious with Trish. If you wanted to get married, why didn't you marry her? She was hot!
JEFF
She was never satisfied with who I am. She always wanted me to be someone else.
SEAN
Hey, I'm "someone else", and she never wanted me!
JEFF
Love can never be forever, being fluid and in doubt.
If I go with her, my perfect girl might come and Iíd miss out.
I am searching for an icon of perfection,
Someone worthy of perpetual affection
Some day Iíll find a goddess who can be enshrined
Till then, Iím not the marrying kind.
Lights up on stage left. Jeff and Sean freeze. Anita and Carmen revive. Lights dim on stage right.
ANITA
Why canít men commit more than a bit of hormone in the night?
Tell me, whatís this "love" theyíre speaking of? They never get it right.
When they want us horizontal in some revel,
I say, "Marry me, and keep it on the level."
To matrimony he is simply not inclined.
Why canít he be the marrying kind?
Lights up on stage right. All four characters are now revived.
CARMEN
He never plans to have his freedom undermined...
SEAN
As long as there are honeys to be wined and dined...
JEFF
Unto eternal bachílorhood I am resigned...
ANITA
If I could be the woman who could change his mind,
Then he would be...
ANITA, JEFF, CARMEN, SEAN
The marrying kind
Blackout.


Continue to Scene Six

Copyright © 2003 William Armstrong



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