One-act play, by Christophe COCHET
Staging by Caroline Apra and Jedd Betari
Extras : Soizic Bernard, Pascal Benchimol, and Guillaume Ruop
[A bar, it is late. A man, half-drunk, half-asleep, is sipping a last drink. A woman in her thirties is also standing at the bar, daydreaming in front of her drink]
Characters: THE WOMAN, THE MAN, THE BARMAN.
Men playing pool in background (Note: in the case of this performance, they were drinking and chatting in the background).
MAN: Didn’t find anyone tonight?
MAN: Yeah, girls like you generally find a bed for the night.
WOMAN: I am not sure I’m that kind of girl.
MAN: No need to argue, I’m not judging you. I’m happy not to be left alone for once.
[The woman scoots closer to the man.]
WOMAN: Let me tell you that I am not a prostitute. I’m not here waiting for a drunken man to pick me up, either. And I won’t allow a whisky-soaked loser to insult me.
MAN [to himself]: She’s got character!
WOMAN: I assume that you come here every night, tease hookers, and empty ten glasses an hour? You are getting a divorce from your wife who can’t stand your getting drunk. You have kids who don’t want to see you anymore. You lost your job some time ago, and that is how all this started.
MAN: Pretty close.
WOMAN: Now you hate the whole world, except the bitch who gives you pleasure once in a while.
MAN: Nice imagination. Had any bad experiences in a bar late at night recently?
WOMAN: Fuck off.
MAN: That’s what I thought.
[Silence between the two. You can hear men playing at a pool table.]
BARMAN: Want another one, Major?
WOMAN: No thanks, Larry. I think I’ll go.
[The woman grabs her purse.]
MAN: Major? You mean like in the army.
WOMAN: I thought I told you to fuck off.
MAN: You know, I was once in the army too. Not on the front of course, but I have seen some bad stuff.
WOMAN: I guess you didn’t have the balls to hold an M16.
MAN: You are the standing proof that it has nothing to do with balls.
WOMAN: You’re becoming smarter.
MAN: Or maybe I am just concealing my assets.
THE WOMAN: What’s the need? Who are you anyway?
MAN: So are you still in? In the army, I mean.
WOMAN: No. Well, yes. But not in the same unit.
MAN: You chose to leave, or were you asked to?
WOMAN: I left because I couldn’t take it anymore.
MAN: Where were you stationed?
WOMAN: Fallujah, Iraq.
MAN: You saw too many nasty things? You missed your family?
WOMAN: Yes and no.
MAN: That’s a concise answer.
WOMAN: I lost a complete platoon in a village ambush when I was responsible for the operation. And I lost my husband three years ago. No children.
MAN: And you think the best medicine is whisky?
WOMAN: No, vodka.
MAN: Character AND humor. Attractive.
WOMAN: I don’t know why I’m telling you about my life.
MAN: Because I asked you to.
BARMAN [to the men who were playing pool and are now leaving]: Good night. See you tomorrow.
[To the woman and man]: You’re the last ones, guys. It’s always you, Martin.
MAN: But I guess I’m not a bad customer, am I?
[The barman smiles and turns away.]
MAN: I’m not offering you a last drink.
WOMAN: No, thanks anyways.
MAN: Well, I think it’s gonna be time for bed.
WOMAN: Hey, wait a sec. You’re forgetting something.
WOMAN: I told you about my life. I want to know about yours.
MAN: You’re sure you don’t want another drink?
WOMAN: Yes. So what do you do?
MAN: I’m a shrink.
WOMAN: Not bad. You’ve got your own office, or do you work in a hospital?
MAN: It depends.
WOMAN: If I am concise, you’re rather non-committal.
MAN: I said I was in the army. I was a psychiatrist there. I didn’t get to see the front but I met the guys who saw its horrors. I have never seen mutilated bodies lying in the dirt, but I have talked to many amputated GIs. And I can tell you that if they had had the balls to hold an M16, they didn’t have the mind to do so afterwards.
WOMAN: I understand.
MAN: I’m not sure you do, but let’s not get into a fight. I don’t think I would be on top.
WOMAN: I bet you wouldn’t.
MAN: However, I do know where I would be on top.
WOMAN: What do you mean?
MAN: Want to have sex?