A Play by Jamel W.

Performance: July 2004
Youth Guidance Center, San Francisco


Characters:
Will, a coconut
Phil, a strawberry
Time: 12 o’clock in the Winter of 2000
Place: Downland, Dedap
At Rise: Will, a drunk coconut, is passed out on the corner. The corner is nasty – broken bottles. It’s desolate – prostitutes and liquor stores. A low income neighborhood.


Act 1, Scene 1
Will wakes up, sweaty, taking deep breaths, heavy breathing

Will:
(aside)
Just a dream…
Will is going to find energy – the realization that it was just a dream and realizing his purpose – why he is still alive today, staying clean. He realizes this after the dream. From this realization, he starts his day.

Act 1, Scene 2

Will:

Gets out of bed, applies a fresh coat of wax, checks clock, regular stuff you do getting out of bed
12 o’clock already? Gotta get going.
Walks downstairs. Will walks up to bar and meets Phil, a strawberry. Bar has polished woodtables with gold trim, soft sturdy stools, cool lighting. Phil is sitting at far end of bar, drinking.

Will:

Wus up, Red? What you got on my daquiri, homey?

Phil:

Nuthin

Will:

Oh, you got somethin’.

Phil:

Man, I aint got nothin’. I thought you said you don’t drink anymore.

Will:

I don’t. I was just playin’ with you. So why you over here gettin drunk like that?

Phil:

Drunk like what? I’m not drunk.

Will:

Shit, if you aint drunk, than I aint the most hated flavor. Naw, for real though. You got a job- you’re the top strawberry at Welch’s, got a beatiful wife, good kids. You don’t got nuthin to be cryin about.
One of his usual attempts at encouragement

Phil: You think just cause you stop drinking, your better than me now? Who are you to talk down on me? You think you know me. You don’t know what I’m going through.
Will:

(Mumbles under his breath) You’d be surprised. So why don’t you tell me.

Phil:

My wife says shes going to divorce me.

Will:

She always says that.

Phil:

No. This time is different. She says I’m not performing like I use to.

Will:

Hold up. Too much information.

Phil:

No. No. She says I’m not romantic anymore. Like I don’t take her on strawberry short dates anymore. Who would? Back in the day – before we got married, she was thick and juicy, but now she just……man! Let’s just put it this way. I’ve been havin thoughts about Carol, the raisin around the corner. And that’s not all, my boss is racist, he’s gonna give my raise to the grape, my kid got a F in PB&J, and my good kid wants to go against the family business and work for Tropicana, and on top of all that—I got to listen to you. You don’t know nothin (fallin’ apart)

Will: Yea, you gotta listen to me. I know more than you think.
Phil:

Yeah, what do you know?

Will:

I know if you keep drinking like that – you’re gonna rot away. I’m speakin from experience. I know what it’s like– just one more drink and all your problems will go away.
Long pause—stares at phil’s drink. Facial expression shows that he can taste that drink. A glimmer of that he wants to taste it.

Phil:

So then you understand why I need this.
Phil also staring at the drink

Will: So caught in his own thoughts he misses what Phil says. If he heard what Phil says – he would realize that alcohol was the cause of Phil’s problems and it probably would have taken away his desire to drink.
I got my own problems.
Forgetting about Phil completely now.
Problems for real. My juices aint pumpin like they used to. I got a ticket for rollin too fast. My girl left me because no one likes coconuts anyway. You think you got problems? I can’t even get a real job. Everyday I get up and listen to you bums complain. Everyday I come downstairs with this hopeless dream that one day everyone will quit drinking. Just Mr. Optimistic. Starting to fall apart

I give up.
Both go still for long pause

Act 1, Scene 3
Two years later, Will is on the corner drunk – seems his dream came true after all.
Phil: Damn, man – what happenned to you?
Will: Naw, I’m good folks (slurring)
Phil: Well then why you out here getting drunk on this corner?
Will: I aint drunk, I’m cool.
Phil: If you aint drunk, than you aint the most hated flavor.
(both laugh)
Anyway, I stopped drinking. I started spending more time with the family. And I even got that raise over that grape.
Will: Red, I don’t know what happenned. After that one drink, everything changed. I stopped caring about everything. Next thing I know, I’m drinkin all day on this corner. Shit just changed.
Phil: I don’t know what to say. I wish I could help. (sincere)
The End.
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