Saturday, December 30, 2006

my other one-pagers

copyright 2005 Maaike Davidson

At an airport waiting to board the plane. DEATH, who is very tall and wearing long black robes, walks in and sits in an empty chair next to NORBERT, a small, unassuming man.

NORBERT: (Nervously) Excuse me? Mr. Death?

DEATH: (In a very deep, clear voice.) Death.

NORBERT: Pardon?

DEATH: Just Death. Not Mister Death.

NORBERT: Oh, sorry. Um, Death, I...I see by your ticket that you’re in the seat right next to mine on the flight.

DEATH: 24C. Yes.

NORBERT: Should I be worried?

DEATH: Worried?

NORBERT: I mean, am I...(clears his throat) on your schedule?

DEATH: Not yet, Norbert.

NORBERT: (Very nervous) You know my name?

DEATH: I know everything’s name. I must know them all. I am Death.

NORBERT: Well, if it isn’t me, then it must be someone else on the plane.


NORBERT: (Panicking, but trying to speak quietly) Oh, God! Is the plane going to crash? Are we all going to die?

DEATH: Norbert, you need not worry.

NORBERT: We’re all going to be ok? All of us passengers?


NORBERT: (Relaxing) Slow day for death then, eh?

DEATH: No. There is never a slow day. (sulking, angrily, almost like a spoiled child) The airline made me check my scythe.

copyright 2005 Maaike Davidson

DEATH stands by the turning carousels of the baggage return. He is staring at an extremely nervous looking young man behind an airline counter. DEATH has his arms folded across his chest and is tapping his bony foot on the floor, making a loud, resounding, tap...tap...tap. Above his head is a sign that reads ARRIVALS. Quiet MUZAK is playing over the speaker system. ANNOUNCEMENTS of flights can be heard.

NORBERT grabs his bag from the carousel and sneaks away while DEATH is not looking. Other passengers follow suit.

DEATH: What do you mean, you’ve lost it?

copyright 2005 Maaike Davidson

Airport waiting room/lounge. A man in a business suit sits reading a book. A young guy, disheveled, falls from above, then sits in the seat right next to him despite empty seats all around.

ANDRES: Dude, I was just abducted by aliens!

Man nods, trying to read his book.

ANDRES: Aliens! Can you believe it? Who knew they were real?

MAN (looks up at him): Were they like everyone says? Green-Grey with big eyes and no ears?

ANDRES: No man, not big eyes...they had big hair. Like, (thinking) who was that chick on t.v. a long time ago?

MAN: Barbara Streisand?

ANDRES: No. The Bionic Woman? Or maybe one of Charlie’s Angels?

MAN: Farrah Fawcett?

ANDRES: Yeah. These aliens had big hair like her. And they wore matching uniforms. Navy blue–with red stripy things at the neck. (beat) Cravats, I think, like Fred on “Scooby Doo.” And they pushed around silver carts filled with food.

Pause. Man turns back to his book.

ANDRES: (continued) They strapped me into a seat. Strapped me in! And there was like, no room to move. Then the big-haired aliens told me that the cushion under my butt could be used as a floatation device. How can I use the thing to float if they’ve strapped me in? And the bigger question is this: What were they going to do to make us have to float in the first place?

MAN: That is a corker.

ANDRES: You know what they did to me next?

MAN: (Keeping his eyes on his book). Shoved probes up your rectum?

ANDRES: No! Dude! That’s gross. No. (Almost shivers) They made me eat fish.

MAN: Fish?

ANDRES: Fish! They said in a really high pitched voices: (stress vowels) Weee are oooout of chiiiickeeeen. On the plus side, they gave me a bottle of vodka that they’d shrunk down with some kind of shrinking ray gun. That’s pretty damn cool.


ANDRES: (Continued) So, where are we?

MAN: Des Moines.

ANDRES: The aliens brought me to Iowa? Man! They could have at least left me the floaty-butt-cushion.

copyright 2005 Maaike Davidson

A group of people stand in line waiting to check in at an airport. A tall woman in line is surrounded by many short people. A young kid stands behind her. The line moves slowly.

KID: You’re tall.

WOMAN: (Having heard this before) Yes.

KID: How tall are you?

WOMAN: 6' 2".

KID: Do you play basket-ball?

WOMAN: (Obviously tired of having had this same conversation many times) No.

KID: (Beat) How about volleyball?

WOMAN: Nope.

KID: Well, what sport do you play?

WOMAN: I don’t play any particular sport. (The man in front of her in line accidently bumps her with his bag. He looks back and then up.)

MAN: Sorry. (He stares for a moment then goes to the available attendant.)

KID: You’re taller than my dad.

ATTENDANT: Next. (The woman steps up and hands the attendant her ticket). Are you over six foot tall?

WOMAN: (Exasperated, addressing everyone around). Yes. I’m over six foot tall. Yes, I’m tall! No I don’t play basketball or volleyball! No, I can’t find women’s trousers with at least a 37 inch in-seam and yes, sleeves are always too short. Yes, thank you all for noticing the obvious and pointing it out to me! If it weren’t for all of you, I’d have never realized my own height!

ATTENDANT: (Beat) Um. I was just wondering if you’d like an aisle seat. You can stretch your legs out. I mean, it’s a long flight.

WOMAN: (undaunted) Oh, yes. That’d be great.

copyright 2005 Maaike Davidson

On the cleared side of the metal detector stand DOROTHY, COWARDLY LION and SCARECROW.

TIN MAN walks through and BEEPS. He returns to the other side and takes off his hat. He tries again. BEEP.

TIN MAN: Oh! (Slapping himself on the head). My oil can. Sorry.

He tries again to walk through the metal detector and BEEPS again.

TIN MAN: I’m sorry I’m a problem. It’s causing me such great despair.

DOROTHY: I swear, if we end up walking to OZ again, I’m gonna be pissed.

The Red-Eye
copyright 2005 Maaike Davidson

Three vampires stand in line at a check in counter in this order: TALL, MEDIUM & SHORT. They are all trying desperately to pretend that they are not vampires, but they are all obviously vampires. TALL speaks slowly and with confidence. MEDIUM is very nervous and SHORT is somewhat oblivious to life around him. They each have a small carry-on bag.

CLERK: Window or Aisle?

ALL: (very quickly) Aisle!

CLERK: Any dietary preferences on your in-flight meal?

TALL: We’re vegetarians.

SHORT: I’m not. (The middle vampire elbows him in the ribs.) Oof! (He gets the hint) I mean...I’m not hungry. Right now. But when I do get feeling a bit peckish, I would, of course, prefer the vegetarian meal.

(Medium and Tall start whispering)

TALL: And we have food allergies.

MEDIUM: Yes, we’re allergic to garlic.

CLERK: No garlic?

MEDIUM: All of us.

TALL: It’s a family thing.

(Pause as the clerk enters this into his computer. The vampires exchange “yes, we are so smart” glaces.)

CLERK: You know, you’re in luck, there’s an earlier flight that has some space on it. We could get you on...

TALL: Ah, ha-ha. I, that is, we appreciate your courtesy. But we really don’t mind flying the red-eye. We are, as one would say creatures of the night.

MEDIUM: People! People of the night!

TALL: We are people of the night.

SHORT: Night-people. So to speak.

CLERK: Well, you’re very lucky. Our Flight attendants are also night-people! Debbie, Buffy and Frank have been flying this...

MEDIUM: Excuse me...who?

CLERK: Debbie, Buffy and Frank...

(The vampires go into a quick huddle. We hear them whispering. The clerk leans in to try to hear. The huddle breaks.)

TALL: (Trying to be nonchalant) I went to school with a Buffy. Is she 5 feet 4ish with blonde hair?

CLERK: No, she’s a 5 foot 9 brunette...from Brazil.

(All vampires show that they are physically relieved).

TALL: (Continuing his act of nonchalance) Oh, that’s not her then. My mistake.

CLERK: Well, here we are, then. Three tickets. Your seats are listed here (clerk points to a place on the ticket) and your flight leaves from Gate 6A.

ALL VAMPIRES: (Various lines of Thank you’s)

They pick up their bags and head off stage. The clerk continues to shuffle papers and type into the computer. After a moment an announcement is made...

ANNOUNCER: Due to mechanical issues, Transylvania flight 722 will be grounded. But don’t worry, passengers, we’ve got good news. Van Helsing Air has agreed to take the passengers on to their destination. Please board at Gate 6A.

The clerk shuffles papers. The three vampires come running from the direction they left and continue off the other side of the stage.

CLERK: (Smiling) Works every time.

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