Sunday, August 3, 2003

Time & Jerry

Time and Jerry
A Play By MICHAEL G. SIVAK
(c)2003 mykl g sivak

Scene One
Bare stage. Lights up on Jerry standing at center stage.


Jerry
I’m just wearing my clothes. I bought them at the department store. I bought these because they are pants and they are brown corduroy. And I bought this because it is a yellow shirt.

Future Jerry
Well, you should have put more thought into it.

Jerry
Leave me alone.

Future Jerry
It’s your fault my life’s a mess.

Jerry
It’s your fault.

Future Jerry
You’re the me who’s fault it is.

Jerry
Don’t blame me for you’re past mistakes.

Future Jerry
Why not? You’re the one who’s making them. It’s your fault I turned out this way. I’m not the same as you anymore Jerry. Look at me. Do I look the same as you? Do I act like you do? You are who I was, and it’s your fault I turned into this.

Jerry
You hate yourself.

Future Jerry
If by myself you mean you then you’re right. I dislike the man I’ve become, but the only one I hate is you.

Jerry
So what.

Future Jerry.
Fuck you, kid. You know what kills me the most about it all? That none of what I’m saying to you even matters.

Jerry
Leave me alone.

Future Jerry
You’ll be alone soon enough, kid. When you get to be me, you’ll be alone all of the time, and you’ll wish you weren’t. You’ll wish that some future incarnation of yourself would manifest himself before you, and give you a little advice. Maybe point out some mistakes you can avoid. You’ll see.

Old man enters

Old Man
Jerry. Jerry.

Future Jerry
Jerry?

Jerry
Oh, Jesus.

Old Man
Jerrys, it’s you!

Future Jerry
Jerry! You came! Now I remember, yes! How could I have forgotten? You always came, right after I came! Oh why didn’t I listen to myself? I remember, you made so much more sense to me that I did. I remember now, yes. I found myself to be so annoying, pinning all my mistakes on me, but then you came and, yes, you, oh wait, I’m, I’m confused now.

Old Man
Shut up, Jerry.

Future Jerry
Oh, sorry. What is it? What knowledge have you come to bestow on me?

Old Man
I’m not here for you, you whining jack off. I’m here for the kid.

Future Jerry
Oh, I-

Jerry
Oh, Jesus, leave me out of this. He obviously wants to talk to you old man, I sure as hell don’t.

Old Man
I think you will, kid.

Jerry
I doubt it. You smell really bad like shit.

Future Jerry
Don’t talk to him like that.

Old Man
Shut up.

Jerry
I’m leaving. You two suck.

Future Jerry
Fine, fine, go! My past is over, there is obviously nothing I can do about it, so just go. My future though, yes, my future is still wide open, yes, even I have the power to change that, even I can work on that. If only, if only I had some pointers, a few tips, things to look out for, yes, then I’d have a shot, I’d have a real shot. Yes, how ‘bout it old man, some pointers, you’ve got the scoop. Clue me in, Jerry! Let me see!

Old Man
Oh, shut up. (To Jerry who has begun to walk away) Hey! Jerry! Wait you little shit!

Jerry
What is it?

Old Man
I have some pointers for you, a little advice.

Jerry
Leave me alone. Go tell him.

Old Man
Oh, just forget about him for a minute will you? He’s just confused is all. He’ll work through it. He’s just living in the past, his mind is all caught up on past events. He thinks by giving you some advice, his life will work out for the better. But we know that it won’t, don’t we. We have a better understanding of time than all that don’t we.
You see Jerry, no matter what he says to you, obviously won’t make any difference because there he is, and his life is a mess. But he always comes back doesn’t he. You’ll see. You’ll see it when you’re him. You’ll forget all about what I’m telling you today, and you’ll get it in your head that you can do what he couldn’t, that you’ll actually make a change.
You’ll see, you’ll see how badly you want me to come back and see you too. You’ll remember that I came back once, and how you liked me a little bit, more than him at least, and you wish that I would come back again, and you’ll think about how I said all of this to you, and that it obviously didn’t make any difference to you before, so why should it now? You see, Jerry, even though you’ll know better, you’ll still wish things could change. And that is a little bit ridiculous.
You’ll see when you are him, you’ll have a much better understanding of the space/time continuum by then, and you’ll know just how ridiculous a wish like that actually is. But sometimes, Jerry, sometimes, no matter how many times a situation doubles over on itself, no matter how many times you experience the very same event, each time you do your perceptions change a little bit, things take a different spin, and very soon you begin to see that you can profit, even in a situation that seems quite set in stone. It’s all in the way you look at things, Jerry. Do you catch my drift?

Jerry
Not really.

Old Man
Don’t worry, Jerry, one day you will. Not that it really matters anyway. Things will just work out, I’m sure of that much.

Jerry
Alright, well, thanks for all that. You are at least a little bit better than that jerk. I hope I can get through being him pretty quick, and get to be you.

Old Man
It’s a sad thing. I would say don’t rush too quick, but I know it’s a stupid thing to say. In fact I remembered that I would say that. I know this whole thing by heart by now, but somehow, its not as though I’m reciting it at all, this dialog is just coming so naturally. It’s strange really. You’ll see what I mean some day. There will be a time when you will actually work to memorize this whole speech, see look over there. There you are, behind that bush, scribbling down every thing I say, taking notes so he can memorize it all. Hello, over there!

Scribbler
(Checks notes) Hello.

Old man
And there you are again, taking notes as well, you’ll notice you look at bit younger then, that’s because you are. Unfortunately half the notes you take that time are eventually destroyed in a small house fire. (Man stops writing) At first you’ll stop taking notes as he did, figuring it is all futile. But then you’ll remember me saying that I was just joking about the fire, so you’ll start again, but then you’ll remember that there was another older younger version of you there, and that he must have come back for something, so you stop again. But really the only reason you’ll come back to take notes a second time will be because you didn’t do a complete job the first time. I don’t know why you do it at all.
(He turns to the two guys) Honestly, fellow, you’re wasting your time. It just comes naturally for me now. Thanks for the effort though. (To Jerry) they won’t leave.

Jerry
They’re still taking notes.

Old Man
Of course they are. (To guys) listen, you tits, Jerry here is saying all his lines correctly, isn’t he? And this is his first time! Don’t worry about it. (The younger one puts down his pad and chooses to watch. The older one scoffs smugly)

Really Old Man
No!

Old Man
Oh brother.

R.O.M
Don’t listen to him, Jerry!

Old Man
Will you shut up? (Sarcastically) Oh, wait. I remember now, of course you won’t! You never do.

R.O.M
One day you’ll see! You’ll wish you’d sided with me!

Old Man
Heard it all before, oldie.
Jerry
Is that me too?

Old Man
Afraid so, kid. Its both of us.

Jerry
Jesus.

R.O.M.
Jerry, listen to me! Forget what this mouse shit is saying, and heed my words. Do what you want. Live your life the way you want to. Don’t let this event rule your life the way it has ours, forget everything they have all said to you. You don’t have to turn out as we did!

Old Man
Yes he does, you insufferable fart gobbler.

R.O.M.
If I were any younger I’d crack your head wide open!

Old Man
If you were any younger, you’d be me, and you’d kick you in your boney old ass. (He kicks R.O.M. in the ass.) Just like that.

R.O.M.2
Halt. (Looks like really old man except he is wearing a super hero costume)

Old Man
Oh yes, that guy.

R.O.M.2
Me!

Old Man
Now please, explain this to me again. I swear, no matter how many times I go through this I can never get this part straight. Who’s this one?

R.O.M.2
I’m him. (Points to R.O.M.)

R.O.M.
He’s us. He’s me, He’s me from a week after now, I think.

R.O.M.2
That’s right. Now leave him alone or I’ll destroy you!
Old Man
Well, honestly, I highly doubt you could do that. But even if you could, I wouldn’t recommend it, because if you destroy me, you will have destroyed yourself.

R.O.M.
That’s a theory we’re willing to test! (The two really old men jump on the old man)

Old Man
I was expecting this!

R.O.Men
So were we!

Note takers
(Holding cam corders) So were we!

Jerry
Oh Jesus, will you fuckers just stop! This is so stupid! And confusing? What the hell can anyone gain from this nonsense? This isn’t enlightening? This can’t possibly enrich my life! It’s just gratuitous and hokey!

R.O.M.2
It’s absurdist!

Jerry
Well whatever it is, its lame and I’m leaving. (To audience) Who’s with me?!

Audience
Wait! You can’t leave!

Jerry
Who are they?

Audience
We’re them, (They point to the actual audience) from the future!

Audience member 1
Listen! Tim! I know this seems stupid and boring now, but believe me, you’re going to need this in two weeks. I can’t get into it, but if you and your date stay, she’ll (makes blowjob sign) later, in the car!

Audience member 2
And Sally! Trust me! Sure this play sucks, but if you leave now you’ll have to go back and spend time with your fat husband!

(Audience exits)
Jerry
Well, if they can handle it, I guess I can. Plus I do want to find out about this old super hero guy.

R.O.M.2
Me!

R.O.M.
Well, it’s quite simple actually, in a few days I awake to find that a radioactive comet has crashed into my living room, giving me modest super powers. That’s how it goes, isn’t it?

R.O.M.2
Basically!

R.O.M.
I don’t know why he’s always shouting.

R.O.M.2
The comet crushed my hearing aid!

R.O.M.
Oh, yes, that’s it.

Old Man
Yes, well that’s just fascinating. Now would you mind leaving us be, Jerry and I were in the middle of something here.

R.O.M.
No, you’ve had your turn. Let me speak to Jerry for a moment.

Old Man
Okay fine. I’m going to get a cup of coffee. But I’ll be back shortly, so no funny stuff.

Jerry
Dude, can you get me a Dunkachino?

Old Man
You buy, I fly?

Jerry
Oh man.

Old Man
Don’t worry about it, my treat.

Jerry
Cool.

R.O.M.2
Tea!

Old Man
Fine. Does anyone else want anything?

Note Taker 2
We’ll split a coke.

Old Man
Okay, anyone else?

Future Jerry
I wouldn’t mind a coffee, light and sweet.

Old Man
Hold on, let me get a pen. (Takes out pen and pad) Now what was it?

All
(Shout out their respective requests)

Old Man
I’m going to need help carrying all this.

R.O.M.
Really old Man 2, why don’t you go with him.

R.O.M.2
Okay!

Old Man
Any of you want to chip in a few bucks as well? All this shit ain’t just for me.

THE END.

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