The Monkey and the Football
A Play In One Act….or, One Scene, Actually….well, really just a couple of lines
- The Globe Guy – an innocent looking old guy who sells the Boston Globe newspaper at the train station where, back in 2006, I boarded the commuter rail each morning on my way to work. Insists on asking everyone who passes if they’d like a Globe (“like a Globe?”) everyday, no matter how many previous days in a row you’ve told him “no, thank you.” Wears thick glasses and a furry hat with ear flaps, even in the summer.
- The Cowboy – a man of few words with, as Pete Townshend so accurately noticed all cowboys have, Chinese eyes. Generally wears a cowboy hat and a trench coat, sometimes black sometimes not-quite-white. Unlike most people who wear cowboy hats in this part of the world (Northeastern United States of America), he doesn’t look like a fool. He could really be an actual cowboy. One day, in passing, I said to him, in reference to his black trench coat, “You look like you ought to have a shotgun up under there”. I said this ‘cause I’m wicked funny, as most of you know. He responded, straight faced but with a twinkle in his eye, “Sometimes I do”. I liked that.
Setting: outdoor train platform, a Wednesday morning in the fall of 2006, 6:40 am Eastern Standard Time.
As the curtain rises, The Globe Guy is standing at center stage. I am walking away from The Globe Guy towards stage right, and pretending I don’t hear him. The Cowboy is walking towards The Globe Guy from stage left.
GLOBE GUY (to Me): “Like a Globe?”
The Cowboy nods to The Globe Guy, but doesn’t speak. The Globe Guy hands The Cowboy a Globe. The Cowboy hands The Globe Guy a one dollar bill.
GLOBE GUY (fumbling in his pouch for 2 quarters, since The Globe costs 50cents): I can’t do a thing with these gloves on. (He’s wearing knitted gloves.)
(I told you he’s a man of few words.)
GLOBE GUY (still fumbling): Oh, fuck it!
The Globe Guy removes his gloves, gets the 2 quarters out of his pouch and hands them to the still silent Cowboy, who is already beginning to back slowly away. (Get ready now, here comes the big finish.)
GLOBE GUY (just as his hand is depositing the 2 quarters in The Cowboy’s hand): It’s like a monkey fucking a football, trying to do anything with gloves on. You know?
The Cowboy exits behind me, stage right, never quite taking his eyes off The Globe Guy.