Monday, April 14, 2008
A Dream Deferred: A Play in Three Acts
The scene opens on a line of travelers awaiting the task of showing their boarding passes to an FAA inspector at the Tucson International Airport as they prepare to fly to Los Angeles. The line moves slowly--the inspector is courteous yet thorough in her duties--but dispenses each traveler in line at a steady pace. About three people from the front of the line is ASTRONOMY PROFESSOR, a married man in his early-to-mid 50's, balding yet continuing to grow his hair in a shaggy swirl as if still in his 20's. He is wearing a blue long-sleeved shirt buttoned to the neck and accented with a novelty tie emblazoned with a planetary pattern (the moon, Saturn, Venus, etc, all of which is surrounded by a wash of stars and galaxies). The shirt is tucked into loose-fitting professorial khaki pants looped with a nondescript belt. The footwear chosen to compliment this ensemble is flip-flops. Directly behind ASTRONOMY PROFESSOR is DISCO:VERY who is watching the man in front of him with astonishment and disbelief.
The ASTRONOMY PROFESSOR is now at the front of the line as he hands the FAA INSPECTOR his boarding pass.
FAA Inspector: [disinterested monotone but professional nonetheless] Good morning, sir. How are you today?
Astronomy Professor: Living the dream. [Spoken with renewed emphasis] Living. The. Dream.
The lights come up on DISCO:VERY who has just witnessed the actions in the previous scene. He collapses, clutching his heart and falls to the ground in spasms.
A hospital waiting area. Everyone who has ever glanced at and/or loved reading DISCO:VERY is crowded into the tiny room as they await word from THE HEART SPECIALIST. The actors adlib their grief over DISCO:VERY's situation as THE HEART SPECIALIST enters stage left and walks into the densely packed waiting room.
The Heart Specialist: [Speaking to the gathered crowd with courage and conviction] I'm sorry. I tried everything I could to revive him, but his heart just couldn't take what he witnessed. My sympathies are with you during this difficult time, but, jeez, c'mon! It's not like there aren't billions of other self-obsessed blogs with which you can replace it in your computer reading rituals, right??. Get over it.