A Play by Joseph

Performance: March 9, 2001
Youth Guidance Center, San Francisco


Time: In the Afternoon
Place: In a Living Room in Potrero Hill. The younger owner, Marquis is upstairs. Shiny The TV is to the left of the window. The nice old plaid couch is to the far right corner. Shiny can see the painting over the couch on the wall. Straight ahead Shiny can see his Mom The Refrigerator in the kitchen. He hears his Dad The Wash Machine in the pantry washing, and he smells his Brother The Microwave heating up a cup of noodles.
At Rise: Shiny is on with his TV on one of his basic channels. He’s enjoying the nice taste of a Kentucky Fried Chicken commercial on his screen. Joe the dog walks through the cat flap in the back door and walks in through the kitchen. He walks in the living room looking in with curiosity. Joe is about to go upstairs.



Shiny:
 

Hey, stop right there! (Joe spins on his heels toward Shiny.) Hi. My name’s Shiny. What’s your name? (Joe looks very scared and shocked.) Don’t be scared. I’m Shiny! You must be a stray looking for a house.

   
Joe:
 

(aside) That shocked the heck out of me — the TV talking!
(to Shiny) Oh this looks like a nice spot for me to hang out. And who you calling a stray?

   
Shiny:
 

Well, I don’t think my owners are going to let you stay in the house.

   
Joe:
 

Well, I seen a kid walking in here from school and it look like they might need a pet. So this is going to be my house, too.

   
Shiny:
 

Well I’m not sure about that, bro. My owners might think you‚are too messy to stay in the house. So you‚all sleep in the backyard.

   
Joe:
 

Well sorry, bro. But I been sleeping in the backyard for too long. So I figure I come in here, and convince some new owners to give me a nice dog mansion —

   
Shiny:
 

(cuts Joe off) Whoa!! Hold on! You’re moving too fast there bro. How you think you’re gonna come up here and shorten my owners pockets buying you dog food when they gotta buy me some cable!

   
Joe:
 

Cable, what?! Well I think they’re gonna buy me a hefty bag of dog food for the inconvenience of your rude behavior! Because I’ve been starving for a week now! You don’t need no cable. You can just stay blank, if all I care. I need to eat.

   
Shiny:
 

Well, I haven’t had many channels in my lifetime, and if I had cable I’d have over a hundred channels. And that would make me feel great. I would be able to entertain my owners how they wanted to — they could watch any channel they want. And all my channels will be clear because all that static make my antennae hurt.

   
Joe:
 

Well, it seems like we have a little competition here going. And I think I got you outnumbered. Because I’m man’s best friend.
(Marquis comes downstairs into the living room and sees Joe. Joe turns around, wagging his tail happily.)

   
Marquis:
 

Hey! A dog!
(pats him on the head. Joe wags his tail and licks Marqui’s hand. Marquis runs into the pantry and grabs a cot.)
I got me a new pet!
(throws cot on the left-hand side of Shiny. Goes back upstairs.)

   
Shiny:
 

What??! (looking disgusted) This dog’s gonna sleep next to me?
(Shiny cuts off furiously, causing sparks to shoot out of his antennae. Marquis” Dad comes in and brings the cable. Shiny turns back on. He sees that the owner has something in his hand. Turns out it’s cable box. Shiny sees that he’s going to hook up his cable box and he flips through his channels with joy. Joe is looking mad.)

   
Joe:
 

How this stupid TV get his cable and I don’t get my dog mansion?!

   
Marquis’ Dad:
 

What’s this dog doing in here?
(Shiny still flipping through channels.)
Marquis, get down here! Where did the dog come from?
(Joe is sitting wagging his tail, just happy to be around humans.)

   
Marquis:
 

The dog came through the back and he looks pretty hungry. Can we keep him please? (Shiny stops flippin through channels while the owner’s back is turned. He’s laughing at Joe because he got his cable. Joe is rubbing up against the Marquis’ Dad’s leg, wagging his tail. He looks at the dog and pats him and stuff)

   
Marquis’ Dad:
 

Well, the dog can stay. You just have to clean up after him.

   
Shiny:
 

(to Joe) Well, I guess you convinced my owners to let you stay, you mutt. But that’s alright, though, because I got my cable. Since we’re gonna be sleepin next to each other, I guess we gotta try and have some sort of friendship now. Well, at least you’re not sleepin in the back yard. But I don’t think you’re gonna get your dog mansion. You fine with that, right?

   
Joe:
 

Well, I am fine with that. Because it’s kind of toasty in here. Since You’re a nice TV, and you got your cable, I can be entertained by you. So turn it to some Tom and Jerry.

   
  The End.
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