Finnegan Flats by Nicholas J Thomson

This Play is the copyright of the Author and must NOT be Performed without the Author's PRIOR consent

(The play is performed split stage. Above ground, in the present day left stage, six feet underground in Finnegan cemetery performed right stage. Lighting on performance side differentiates the active scene).

Scene I

(As the stage lights up, we see George Centre stage. George is lying on his sofa with an old throw over him, at his last moments)

George: “My Julia, my sweet, beautiful Julia. Fifty-one years married and seven weeks, three hours and forty-seven minutes since you’ve been gone. Life is so different without you. I feel so lost. Oh, Julia, how I would love for this world to take me now and carry me into that tight clinched grasp of yours. Oooo” (Final breath and George passes away) (Lights fade)

End of scene I.


Scene II

(As lights come up on left side of stage, we see the funeral director facing the audience. A pile of dirt and headstone in front of the funeral director.)

Funeral director: Dearly beloved; although there’s only two of you, we are here today to farewell a great man, a great father, a devoted husband to the late Julia and a man that put everyone first before himself. George Finbar Bracewell, today we lay you to rest and wish you well as you are re-connected with your Julia.

(As the lights fade out, Funeral director exits right of stage)

Seriously two people to his funeral? Haha, what a fucking loser, does he have no mates at all? Two people, both his sons, didn’t blink a tear. And Finnegan’s? Seriously this place is a shithole, saving pops pennies I'm guessing.


(Lights come up to the right side of the stage, we see two upright open coffins, George in one, Julia in the other. George wakes)

George: What a weird dream that was, my death and my funeral. Christ that funeral bloke was a wanker. “Hes a great guy, a wonderful father” blah blah blah, shut up mate. I have you know I wasn’t the greatest father, but you’re not going to say that; you’re going to talk positive bullshit to collect the pay packet that would come from my back pocket.

Julia: George, they can't hear you dear.

George: Julia, my love, it’s you? How?

Julia: George sweetie, you’ve passed, you died four days ago on your favorite chair. The autopsy came back, they believed you died of a broken heart dear. Here, over here! To the right, (waves) hello dear.

George: Julia It's you. My love, oh Julia. Wait what I’m dead? Really? (Looks down at his body) shit! Why I didn’t feel a thing dear… (shuffles around grabbing his back) I am now though, Christ how uncomfortable are these coffins…Is yours the same? Let me guess, our sons went for the cheaper option?

Julia: Did you expect any different?

George: After everything we did for them, this is how we’re repaid? Seriously? Wait they buried both of us at Finnegan's.?

Julia: Did you expect any different?

George: Those cheap bastards! the boys said after you passed, “we will take care of it dad”. I turned up to your funeral and was shocked. Embarrassed where we laid you to rest. God I'm uncomfortable, (looking around his coffin) does yours still have nails sticking out or something? Seriously who built this thing?

Julia: George, nails, uncomfortable, dive of a graveyard it doesn’t really matter now does it. Stop whining. We are dead and gone. Ok that’s it!

George: Argh yes there's that positivity & crankiness I missed, that didn’t take long love. Look Jules, do you think now that we are dead, you could maybe you know... not nag me so much? It's just the last few years there Jules you got quite bad.

Julia: (Burst out laughing) Oh your serious right now? Ok wow! If I could come over there and slap you right now I would. I got quite bad, did I? Well guess what; these last couple of months down here have been a dream. Like a mini friggin holiday. Not having to cook, clean, make lunches, clean your skiddy undies. I mean you're 71 years old. Still haven't learned how to wipe your ass properly champ.

George: You know, one of the first things I was going to ask you when I eventually saw you again dear, was had you been missing me; but I think I know the answer to that... (pause) And yes, I can wipe my ass properly thank you very much.

Julia: George, I love you; you know that but my god you got grumpy in your old age. If it wasn’t my cooking, it was your sports team, if it wasn’t your sports team, it was the boys or your back. The only thing that made you happy in the end was that bloody couch and your stupid crime documentaries.

George: And you my love, you're forgetting I died of a broken heart...

Julia: Oh George. We did love each other. We did have a good life. Let's not bicker, the other residents here apparently take the whole ‘rest in peace’ thing seriously. Our boys will be fine George. You worked hard, yes you were away a lot, but we made it work. We raised a family; we gave shelter to a child in need. We did a lot in our time up there, now it’s time for us! When I turned up, I was a bubbling mess and Steven over there, two along from you after telling me to shut up soon showed me it's fun down here; there's no responsibility. We had a beautiful life together George, I loved every minute of it, and I do love you very much, let's stop this silliness and just laugh and love aye! What do you say......? George? (pause) George...... (longer pause)

George: (snorting, waking up) Sorry Jules, I missed that, I must have dozed off, what were you saying?

Julia: Unbelievable! Nothing's changed. Goodnight, George! Don’t bloody snore.!

(Lights fade on the right stage, followed by twenty seconds of loud snoring noise as the theatre is in darkness. As lights come up on the right stage, we see George and Julia in the same position).



George: (George stretches) Morning dear, how did you sleep?

Julia: I haven't slept a blink. Someone kept me up with their nostril trumpets all night, you know the ones.

George: Oh Jules, I slept wonderful. I was nervous considering the shit box I'm lying in, but all in all a good night's rest. (George looks to the left stage to indicate looking up) oh Jules dear look. It looks like we may have a new flatmate joining us.

Julia: Oh no, he looks so young. I wonder what on earth happened. His poor parents. (Eyes look around frantically) Where are his parents? George which ones are his parents? George, can you tell?

George: Shh listen...



(Lights fade on the right stage, and lights come up on left side of stage. Funeral director in front of the dirt pile and head stone facing the audience) (George and Julia’s dialogue takes place with them remaining in darkness to indicate speaking from underground)



Funeral director: (Big yarn) Dearly beloved. We are here to celebrate the life of Andy. (Someone shouts out off stage, - its Randy) I mean Randy. Sorry about that.

George: God I hate this guy.

Funeral director: He was a young man taken too soon. He leaves behind a sister, a little brother and a handful of good mates.

Julia: No parents?

George: Shh.

Julia: George for Christ's sake we’re dead they can't hear us.

Funeral Director: We lay Randy to rest here at (coughs) beautiful Finnegan cemetery. A place where he can feel at ease, and you can all know he is happy.

George: This place is a shithole, what are you talking about mate...

Funeral Director: As we lower you down into the earths soil, it is here at Finnegan cemetery that you shall forever feel peace and at rest. Goodbye and goodnight, Andy (someone shouts off stage, its Randy) doesn’t matter now does it.

(As funeral director exits left, he looks around)

F.D: Seriously why are people burying their loved ones here?

(Lights fade on the left stage and come up on the right stage. We see an extra coffin upright with Randy in it to the right of Julia) (Randy crying hysterically)

Julia: You ok son?

Randy: Who and what the hell was that? Where am I? Get me out, I'm claustrophobic I can't breathe.

Julia: Of course, you can't breathe son, your dead. Here two spots over to your left. Hi! Welcome to Finnegan’s.

Randy: SCREAMS!

Julia: shh. its ok son... I know it's a lot. Do you need a minute.

Randy: I'm dead?

Julia: I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but yes you are. Can you remember back to the last events of your life at all? How you may have got here?



(Lights fade, with following Voice recording playing)



Randy: Bro, don’t be a dick, your totally wasted, you can't drive. Oi don’t man, we can walk and get the car tomorrow, Haha bro don’t. (pause) … arghh ok but I get to choose the music. Shotgun!



(Lights come back up on the right stage)

Randy: I remember I was in a car. Travelling fast. I think my mate was there, yea he was driving. He had been drinking. I remember I asked him to not drive but then stupidly I got in the car. I can't remember much after that. Oh, God I remember loud music and then a sharp bend in the road...

Julia: Oh dear.

George: Your friend should be shot!

Randy: Who the hell are you old man!

Julia: Sorry, that’s my husband, George. George shh. What's your name son.

Randy: I'm Randy, miss, sorry about the language. Sorry Georgie. This is a lot. This whole thing has kind of freaked me out. We’re dead? Like for real? I remember me, and my mates use to always joke around saying, ‘how old you reckon you’ll be when you die’, or ‘if you could know when and how would you want to know’. Shit shouldn’t have got in that car, I guess. What about you guys? How did you umm... you know, how did you end up here?

Julia: I went to sleep one night and just never woke. A typical night, I had my cup of tea, hot water bottle and magazine. Then I woke up here a few months back.

Randy: Did it hurt, or feel weird? I guess that’s the best way to go right?

Julia: I didn’t feel a thing. I remember I had an intense dream that night. There were all these colours, but otherwise no. Not a thing.

Randy: And what about you Georgie?

George: It's just George thank you., and I died of a broken heart...

(Long pause)

Randy: (laughing hysterically) lame!!!

George: Son you may laugh, one day you’ll find love and realise what I mean...

Julia: George for peats sakes! We are dead!

George: Oh yea, sorry son, I'm still getting used to this whole being dead thing too. I wasn’t long buried before you.

Randy: I guess I won't find love huh. Man, this sucks at least you folks are old as shit. You got to live your life.

George: You have a real way with words Randy ….

Julia: How old are you, Randy?

Randy: I’m 17 Miss. well, I was 17. I don’t know what to call you.

Julia: I'm Julia Bracewell. You can call me Julia.

Randy: What about Mrs B?

Julia: Sure.

Randy: Mrs B, and Georgie

George: Just George thank you.

Julia: (giggles)… We watched on at your farewell. I couldn’t help but see there were no parents present or mentioned by the funeral director?

Randy: He was a dick that funeral dude aye.

George: Amen! Smartest thing you’ve said since arriving Randy.

Randy: Na no parents, Mrs B. Unfortunately, they were drug addicts, and taken away when I was young, maybe when I was like six or seven years old. We would always have nice things around like bikes, toys, clothes. But then a day or two later they would be gone. They were obviously pinching things to sell to feed their habits. They were taken away and for a lot of years I slept on the streets and just floated between foster care. I inherited a sister and a brother though which was cool, from different families obviously but still call them my bro & Sis. Christ, I look back at my funeral, and who's there; hardly anyone turned up. I thought I was more popular than that.

Julia: You poor boy, that must have been a hard upbringing, and don’t feel too bad son, two people turned up to George’s.

Randy: (laughing hysterically) lame!!!

George: When did I become the laughingstock?

Randy: My upbringing wasn’t too bad Mrs B. My first foster mum Jen always taught me to know there are a lot of people worse off no matter what the situation. I just can't believe I’m dead, (interrupting himself) O hey look, look, look, check it out here comes some dudes with flowers?

Julia: That’s our boys, Jack & Michael. Oh, George they did come. I told you they would. Our boys have come to see us. And they have flowers … Please do not be lily’s, please do not be lily’s you know I hate lilies....

Randy: I don’t know flowers that well Mrs. B, but I'm pretty sure those are lilies.

(In the dark left stage, we see two figures enter stage left drop flowers by the headstone and grave and then exit immediately stage left)

(Pause)

Randy: Rough...

George: Those miserable bastards., that’s right, piss off you sad, heartless pricks.

Julia: George please...

George: We’re laying here in these god-awful coffins that feel like they were made from year 4 students, they know their mother hates lilies' and that’s how they act. No words? Got nothing to say? No, we miss you mum and dad, it's not the same without you.

Julia: George please... (sobbing)

George: Nope just a thanks for the inheritance, guys. We did fuck all to help ourselves. We just thought we would wait around for mum and dad to curl over and take it easy. Fuck it we will save our money on flowers, coffins and ceremonies too aye. Assholes!

Julia: George please...stop!

George: I’m sorry Jules but that’s shit. That’s a shitty thing to do. Gives you an insight to humankind doesn’t it, was a nice place to be put to rest that hard? Not bloody Finnegan's.

Randy: It's not too bad this place Georgie.

George: For God's sake you idiot, its George, and you’re just a kid, you don’t know what's nice or not. Fool!

Julia: George!

Randy: Georgie! we are dead. Shit you got to grow old, marry Mrs B, have children and success. I am a kid, a kid that had nothing growing up. If I'm honest this place is kind of nice, at least I’m warm at nights now. Not out on the streets wondering where I’m going to sleep each night. This whole situation sucks dude, but it would be way more enjoyable without your attitude.

George: Listen here you little shit...

Randy: Georgie, mate, shut up! if I could come and slap Ya right now I would. (pause) sorry Mrs B...

Julia: Please, don’t apologise, Smartest thing you’ve said since arriving Randy. (Giggle)


Lights fade, end of scene II

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