For a Day by Robert Dodge


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FOR A DAY - starting at Page 10 of the First Act


      SCOOTER:  Magenís not your wife.

      NATHAN:  I know.  You know.  But Mr. Weathers doesnít know.  He is
      under the impression that Magen is my wife and he wants to meet her.

      SCOOTER:  Why would Mr. Weathers have the impression that Magen is
      your wife?

      NATHAN:  Well, I sort of gave him that impression, when I told him
      Magen was my wife.

      SCOOTER:  What!

      NATHAN:  Happily married for the last two years.

      SCOOTER:  Why would you tell him, you and Magen are married?

      NATHAN:  I had to say it.  I was in a pinch and had to say something.
      Mike and Steve were telling Mr. Weathers all these nice wholesome
      stories about their families.
      [Sarcastically speaking as Mike and Steve]
      My wife makes the best apple pieÖ You should taste my wifeís peach
      cobblerÖ  My little Johnny is so smart, he placed first at the
      science fairÖ  My beautiful daughter, Squeeny is growing up to be
      just like her mother.

      SCOOTER:  Squeeny?

      NATHAN:  I donít know.  It may have been Squeezy or tweedy or beany,
      something like that.  Made me sick!  I couldnít stand it!  I had to
      speak up.

      SCOOTER:  Sounds like you did.

      [Enter Megan, she is takes off her coat and hangs it on the hook by
      the door.  She is still wearing her 1950ís Department Sales girl
      dress.  Google it]

      MAGEN:  Hello guys, I got your message.  Sorry Iím late Nathan.
      What a busy day I had.  Freedmenís was packed with shoppers.  Then,
      just before I was getting ready to leave, we had another perfume
      emergency at the fragrance counter.

      SCOOTER:  Another perfume emergency?  This smells of something foul.
      Exactly how many perfume emergencies are there.  Do you count them by
      the day, week or month?  What exactly is a perfume emergency anyway?

      MAGEN:  We sold out of, ďVert et BlancĒ by Carven.  Our number one
      best customer wanted a bottle.  The girls didnít know what to do. 

      SCOOTER:  So, you had to step in.  What did you do?

      MAGEN:  Iíve learned a long time ago that if you donít have what
      the customer wants, you sell them what youíve got. So, I showed her
      our newest fragrance, ďEnchanting MenaceĒ, by Evyan.  I convinced
      her it was as fragrant as the names implies.  Iím not sure if she
      wanted to be enchanting or a menace or both.  It was a hard sale, but
      she bought it.  To be honest with you, it kind of stinks.  Smelly in
      an odd way.  Itís definitely a scent one has to acquire.  The trick
      is to use it sparingly as a little goes a long way.  I had to convince
      the customer that itís the newest trend in perfumes and she should
      be the first of her friends to get a bottle.

      SCOOTER:  Megan to the rescue.  Another perfume emergency solved!

      MAGEN:  Nathan, you wanted to ask me something?

      NATHAN:  Yes Megan, there is something I want to ask of you.  Scooter
      would you mind?

      SCOOTER:  Mind what?

      NATHAN:  Would you leave?

      SCOOTER:  No, Nate.  I think Iíll stay.  I have to see this.

      MAGEN:  Itís alright Scooter you can stay.  Go ahead Nathan, is
      there something you want to ask me?

      SCOOTER:  Yes Nathen.  Is there something you want to ask her?

      NATHAN:  Stay out of this Scooter.

      SCOOTER:  Shouldnít you be down on your knees?

      MAGEN:  [Excited with her hand on her chest]
      Nathan!  Are you going to ask me what I think you are going to ask
      me?

      SCOOTER:  Are you Nate?  Are you going to ask her what she thinks you
      are going to ask her?

      MAGEN
      Scooter, perhaps you should leave us alone.

      SCOOTER:  Wait for it.

      NATHAN:  No!  I donít knowÖ not now Magen.  Maybe someday.

      MAGEN:  Someday?

      SCOOTER:  [Abruptly interrupts and shouts]  He wants you to be his
      wife for a day!

      MEGAN:  What!

      SCOOTER:  [Speaks louder as if Magen didnít hear him]  A day!
      Nathan wants you to be his wife for a day.

      NATHAN:  Magen, letís sit down and talk.
      [Nathan takes Magen by the hand and leads her to the couch.  They sit
      down.  Scooter also takes a seat on the other side of Magen.  Magen is
      speechless and she hasnít taken it all in yet]
      Magen, this is very important to me.

      SCOOTER:  This is important to Nate!

      NATHAN:  Scooter! Ö You know I wouldnít ask you if it wasnít.

      SCOOTER:  He would never ask you if it wasnít so important Magen!

      NATHAN:  Stay out of this Scooter! Ö Magen, would you help me
      impress my boss by being my wife for a day?

      SCOOTER:  ImpressÖ

      [As Scooter starts to repeat Nathanís last line, Magen holds up one
      finger to signal him to stop.] 

      MAGEN:  [Wanting to clarify the question for a better understanding]
      Do you mean, like that awful, horrible, demeaning to woman T V game
      show?  Queen for a Day?

      NATHAN:  Yes, like Queen for a Day.  Only, youíll be ďmyĒ Queen
      for a Day.  Wait, what?

      MAGEN:  Will I win a new vacuum cleaner or washing machine?

      NATHAN:  No, itís not like that.  I need your help to impress my
      boss so I can get a promotion.

      MAGEN:  Is your boss going to give me a new vacuum cleaner or washing
      machine?

      NATHAN:  Nobody is getting a vacuum cleaner or washing machine.  Magen
      Iím asking you to help me impress my boss, Mr. Weathers and his
      wife, be my wife for a day and prepare a home cooked meal.

      MAGEN:  A home cooked meal?

      SCOOTER:  I offered to make beans and wienies, but Nathan said no.

      MAGEN:  SoÖ where does that wife for a day work into all this?

      NATHAN:  You may not believe this, but Mr. Weathers thinks you and I
      are married.  Isnít that silly?

      [Megan stands up, Nathan follows]

      MAGEN:  Why does Mr. Weathers think you and I are married Nathan?

      SCOOTER:  [Scooter jumps up]  Because Nathan told him!

      MAGEN:  Stay out of this Scott!

      SCOOTER:  This is getting serious Nate.  She only calls me Scott when
      sheís mad.  Tread carefully my friend.

      MAGEN:  You told your boss that you and I are married?

      SCOOTER:  Happily married, for two blissful years!

      MAGEN:  Why?  Why would you say that?

      NATHAN:  Because I love you??

      MAGEN:  How could you!

      NATHAN:  I wasnít quick enough to think of anything else??

      SCOOTER:  And he couldnít take any more talk about Squeeny.  He had
      to say something.

      MAGEN:  Scott!

      SCOOTER:  Yes mam.

      MAGEN:  Nathan, if you really loved me, you would ask me to marry you,
      not be your Wife for the day!  Only a day!  Whatís wrong with you?

      SCOOTER:  Yes Nathan, whatís wrong with you?

      NATHAN:  Iím weak Magen.  I felt pressured.  I need your help to
      impress my boss.  You can be very impressive when you want to be.

      MAGEN:  Itís all about you impressing your boss for a promotion?

      SCOOTER:  Over a nice home cooked meal of fried chicken, mashed
      potatoes and peas.  Made by you, Nateís pretend wife for the day.

      NATHAN:  Scooter!

      SCOOTER:  Well, it doesnít have to be fried chicken.

      NATHAN:  Scooter!! Please!

      SCOOTER:  I havenít even mentioned the biscuits or the apple pie.

      MAGEN:  Are you ever going to ask me to marry you?

      [Nathan pauses while thinking about the question]

      O.K. forget it Nathan.  I think you should take that offer of beans
      and wienies, because Iíve had enough.  Two years Iíve hung around
      with the hope that we would marry.  I see now, itís not part of your
      plan.  So foolish of me.  How about if I impress you by leaving.

      [Magen quickly crosses to the door.  Placing one hand on the door she
      stops and turns to Nathan]

      Two years!  The things Iíve had to endure, likeÖ  [Magen points at
      Scooter]  Putting up with that!  And what do I have to show for it?
      Nothing! Just a big waste of my time.  After I cool off, Iíll come
      back to pick up my things.  Good bye Nathan!

      SCOOTER:  Bye Magen.

      MAGEN:  Oh, shut up Scott!

      [Exit Magen. After a pause, Nathan and Scooter sit back down on the
      couch.  They both stare straight out not looking at each other.  They
      take turns sighing.  First Nathan then Scooter each time getting a
      little louder until Nathenís next line.  Nathen stands]

      NATHAN:  What am I going to do?  I donít want to lose Magen, but
      Iím not ready to get married.  Iím too young for marriage.  Iím
      only twenty-three years old. 

      SCOOTER:  Most men today, get married at twenty-three.  Next year
      youíll be considered an old man.

      NATHAN:  An old man!

      SCOOTER:  Better than an old maid.

      NATHAN:  Magenís not an old maid.  Sheís twenty-one.  Thatís
      still young.  Weíve got plenty of time to get married.

      SCOOTER:  Nate, think of Magen as Donna Reed.  She greets you at the
      door with a kiss.  Sheís wearing a beautiful pressed and clean
      dress.  She has a martini in one hand, a newspaper in the other and a
      pre-lit cigar in her other hand.

      NATHAN:  Magen is not Donna Reed!  I donít drink martiniís.  I
      donít smoke cigars and Megan does not have three hands.

      SCOOTER:  True, but wouldnít it be great!  Dinner on the table each
      night when you get home from a hard dayís work.  Meatloaf Mondays!
      Spaghetti Tuesdays.  Tuna casserole Wednesdays.  Mac and Cheese
      ThursÖ

      NATHAN:  I got the idea.  You can stop.

      SCOOTER:  Steak and potatoes Friday.  Chili and cornbread SaturdayÖ

      NATHAN:  Please stop.

      SCOOTER:  Wait, this is the best part. Fried chicken Sundays!

      NATHAN:  I said you can stop!

      SCOOTER:  Youíll invite me over every Sunday for dinner!

      NATHAN:  Has anyone ever told you, that you are an idiot!

      SCOOTER:  Sure, there was you, Magen and many others.  Oh!  What about
      Barbara Billingsley?

      NATHAN:  Who?

      SCOOTER:  She plays June Cleaver on ďLeave it to Beaver.Ē

      NATHAN:  June Cleaver called you an idiot?

      SCOOTER:  No, not yet.

      NATHAN:  In all fairness she hasnít met you.

      SCOOTER:  June Cleaver is another good example of what you can expect
      if you were to marry Magen.

      NATHAN:  Are you basing all your examples of marriage on television
      sitcom mothers?

      SCOOTER:  Of-course!  Itís real life.  The television doesnít lie!
      Theyíre not just mothers, theyíre also wives.  I havenít even
      mentioned, ďOzzie and Harriet,Ē ďFather Knows BestĒ or ďI
      Love Lucy.Ē  That Lucy always makes me laugh.  She sure gets into
      some fun and amusing predicaments.

      NATHAN:  I do love Magen.

      SCOOTER:  And I Love Lucy!

      NATHAN:  Iím sure Magen will make a good wife.  Iíll think about
      it.  Me and Magen getting married someday, maybe.  But right now,
      Iím thinking about this promotion.  First things first!  Take care
      of business as my dad would say.  Work hard and be successful.  I
      donít want to lose this promotion.  It includes more
      responsibilities, a secretary and a twenty dollar a month raise.

      SCOOTER [Scooter stands]  Donít worry Nate, youíll never lose me!
      Iím here for you buddy.

      NATHAN:  Oh, shut up Scott!

      SCOOTER:  Wait!  I have a plan.

      NATHAN:  Oh no.

      SCOOTER:  Has Mr. Weathers or his wife ever met Magen?

      NATHAN:  NoÖ

      SCOOTER:  Thatís good.  I have a friend who Iím sure would play
      the role of your wife for the night.

      NATHAN:  O.KÖ Who is this friend?

      SCOOTER:  Her name is Lola.

      NATHAN:  Lola?

      SCOOTER
      Yes, Lola.  Sheís a good friend of mine.

      NATHAN:  I know all of your friends.  Iíve never met a Lola.

      SCOOTER:  Lola is my private friend.  Youíve never met her.

      NATHAN [Nathan stands]  A prostitute! You want a prostitute to play
      the role of my wife and meet my boss?


[End of Extract]


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