In Plays on December 8, 2012 at 8:17 AM


The text below was performed at The Flea Theater, December 6-8, as part of Serials @ The Flea. The author decided to end the series with the following episode.








VOICEOVER:         (with American accent) Mesdames et Messieurs, au début de 2003, Marché aux puces, directeur artistique Jim Simpson a fait une série d’entretiens avec NPR à propos de ses expériences largement relatés avec des narcotiques dans ses premiers jours. Ce qui suit est une reproduction d’un de ces entretiens. (with French accent) Ladies and gentlemen, in early 2003, Flea Artistic Director Jim Simpson did a series of interviews with NPR about his widely chronicled experiments with narcotics in his early days. The following is a recreation of one of those interviews.

JIM:         After Gore lost the election, I bought a bottle of cough syrup from the corner grocery store and drank it in hopes that it would get me high.

RICKMAN:                  It was children’s formula.

JIM:                           Sigourney?

SIGOURNEY:         You’re fine, Jim.

JIM:         Sigourney I just drank a bottle of children’s formula cough syrup because I’m sad about the election.

SIGOURNEY:         At least now I’ll get good tax cuts.

ANNIE:                  Jiiim.

SIGOURNEY:         Annie’s calling Jim.

ANNIE:                  Jiiiim.

JIM:                           Hey Annie.

ANNIE:                  Jiiiim when are you coming ova?

JIM:                           Oh shit what did we say seven?

ANNIE:                  Six.

JIM:                           I’ll be right there.

ANNIE:                  Okay.

WHITE WHALE:         Annie Potts hangs up the phone.

SIGOURNEY:         Meet you at the theater.

JIM:                           What?

SIGOURNEY:         We’re seeing that Bible show at The Rat.

JIM:         Later I was going to see some Bible play at The Rat but earlier I had agreed to buy adirol for everyone.

RICKMAN:                  I had a service called the White Whale.

JIM:         You call The White Whale and a gentleman with a briefcase arrived.

RICKMAN:                  You took him to a room with no windows.

JIM:         And the White Whale would open his briefcase and hand you the menu.

WHITE WHALE:         Tonight we have: Everything.

JIM:         Xanax.

WHITE WHALE:         Perkaset.

JIM:         Morphine tablets.

WHITE WHALE:         Oxycodone.

JIM:         Lithium.

WHITE WHALE:         Valium.

RICKMAN:         Liquid tinctures of phenylcyclohexylpiperidine commonly initialized as PCP and known colloquially as angel dust.

WHITE WHALE:         Angel tears.

JIM:                           I’ll just take twenty adirol.

WHITE WHALE:         Good choice.

JIM:                           This was the night before Halloween.

ANNIE:                  Annie’s place was in shithole Brooklyn called Bushwick.

JIM:                           I rode there on my bike.

ANNIE:                  Hi Jim, come on in.

JIM:                           Hello Oliver how are you Oliver.

ANNIE:                  Don’t talk to the dog.

JIM:                           Does Oliver want O-U-T?

ANNIE:                  The dog’s not a human, Jim.

JIM:         After playing with the dog for a half hour, I remembered why I was there.

RICKMAN:         Offer her some adirol for sale.

JIM:         Yeah you know that pill I gave you a half hour ago?

ANNIE:         Uh huh

JIM:         That was adirol.

ANNIE:         This explains a lot.

JIM:         After Annie wrote an outline of her entire financial plan for the year, we exchanged money.

ANNIE:         Thanks Jim I’mna clean my bathroom now.

RICKMAN:         Jim took … a second pill.

JIM:         I got back on my bike.

RICKMAN:         I was in Bushwick.

JIM:         It took me fifteen minutes to get to Manhattan.

RICKMAN:         I didn’t even break a sweat.

JIM:         I texted Annie:

ANNIE:         “Adirol Power!”

JIM:         And she texted back:

ANNIE:                  “It’s special, right?”

JIM:                           “Now I don’t need to eat!”

RICKMAN:                  Rickman greeted me at the door.

JIM:                           My second delivery.

RICKMAN:                  Hello Jim … Simpson.

JIM:                           He was in his pajamas.

RICKMAN:                  You’ve really got to play this video game, Jim.

JIM:                           Oh yeah I don’t think we’ve got time.

RICKMAN:                  But Jim. The graphics.

JIM:                           Rickman paused the game.

RICKMAN:                  We walked to the theater.

ACTOR:                  Hey.

JIM:                           Hey.

ACTOR:                  God I didn’t recognize you with the beard.

JIM:                           I’ve got a beard?

ACTOR:                  Uh huh.

JIM:                           I was in the audience of a show at a theatre.

ACTOR:                  We’re … waiting on Sigourney?

JIM:                           Hmn?

ACTOR:                  Your wife Sigourney is in the bathroom.

JIM:                           My wife is here?

SIGOURNEY:         Jesus Christ I’m too high to be at a theater show.

JIM:                           She was with Rickman.

RICKMAN:                  Sigourney stopped by and we took the drugs you gave me

JIM:                           Sold you.

RICKMAN:                  Sigourney and I walked here. Alone.

JIM:                           But … you and I walked here together.

RICKMAN:                  Did we?

JIM:                           I think –

RICKMAN:                  Don’t think, Jim.

JIM:                           Okay but … we’re all here?

RICKMAN:                  Are we?

JIM:                           The lights dimmed.

RICKMAN:         We sat in the creaky black plastic chairs of the double-rowed theater.

SIGOURNEY:         What are we watching?

JIM:                           Hmn?

SIGOURNEY:         What is this play?

RICKMAN:         It is a retelling of a book from the Bible but with modern references and lots of fucking.

JIM:         We sat there.

RICKMAN:         (whispering) This is so historically accurate.

SIGOURNEY:         Mmm.

ACTOR:         Let’s go outside and make a bonfire!

JIM:         It was a silly piece of shit.

RICKMAN:         At one point, an unpaid actor playing a brother rapes an unpaid actress playing his sister.

SIGOURNEY:         Oh my gawd.

JIM:         I vowed from then on that when I owned a theatre I would pay any actor One Hundred Dollars a night if that actor had to get naked on front of an audience because it’s only decent to pay people to show off their naked bodies in front of strangers for profit and this is a promise that I’ve kept to this day in any institution I represent.

SIGOURNEY:         Sigourney began cracking her knuckles.

RICKMAN:                  She began shaking her head No.

JIM:         She looked over at me when the main character’s dick was cut off.

RICKMAN:                  She looked over as if to say,

SIGOURNEY:         Let’s get out of this theater.

JIM:                           (whispers) But we’re in the middle of the performance.

SIGOURNEY:         She put her head between her knees.

RICKMAN:         Sometimes when truth is pretending to be truth it can seem fake and unreal.

JIM:                           We were sitting at the bar.

SIGOURNEY:         This was later.

JIM:                           I liked the strobe lights.

SIGOURNEY:         I counted sixty-two lighting units.

RICKMAN:                  Sixty three.

SIGOURNEY:         I got sixty two.

JIM:                           The adirol was wearing off.

RICKMAN:         The problem with shitty theatre is that if a person who never sees theatre sees shitty theatre that person will never see theatre again in his or her entire life What are you writing?

JIM:                           Hmn?

RICKMAN:                  On that cocktail napkin what are you writing?

JIM:                           Our conversation.

SIGOURNEY:         You better not write this in the next episode.

JIM:                           No, I’m ending after this one.

RICKMAN:                  It’s played out.

JIM:                           Yeah, and Carol doesn’t like it.

SIGOURNEY:         Carol doesn’t like anything.

RICKMAN:                  It’s called, being a managing director.

JIM:                           I think it wore off.

SIGOURNEY:         Yeah, your jaw’s loosening up, grindy.

JIM:                           I should never take pills and see theater.

RICKMAN:         All the greats took drugs. Tennesee choking to death on his muse the bottle cap. Lanford Wilson drinking so much that his liver literally exploded. Sarah Kane popping pills. Shakespeare smoking weed. Sam Shepard shooting heroin into Patti Smith’s eyeball. Eugene O’Neill birthed from an opium smoker’s vagina. It is no coincidence that writers who take drugs write better plays. They’re the only one we end up remembering anyway. Sigourney?

SIGOURNEY:         Yes Alan?

RICKMAN:                  Goodnight. Jim?

JIM:                           Alan.

SIGOURNEY:         Goodnight.

They watch him go. 

SIGOURNEY:         Wanna fool around?

JIM:                           Does South’s have a bathroom?

SIGOURNEY:         The Woman’s is nicer.

JIM:                           I’ll go check if it’s clear.

SIGOURNEY:         No let me. I gotta pee but I’ll text you when it’s clear.

She kisses him on the cheek and goes quick.

BARTENDER:         Are you going to fuck your wife Sigourney Weaver in the bathroom?

JIM:                           … Yes?

BARTENDER:         Well cheers mate. Sign here.

JIM:                           Nah, charge it to my theater.

BARTENDER:         Sure thing.

Jim’s phone buzzes.

JIM:                           See you in four minutes.

Western cowboy music rises.

Thick red light.

Jim walks in slow motion across the stage as the lights slowly fade – an icon disappearing into the sunset.





Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: