- MR. GOODBAR
- A seedy motel room.
[Lights up on BEVERLY (33)well put together, slim and wearing flattering and feminine business attire. She cradles a plastic Halloween pumpkin filled with candy.]
[She looks around the room and carefully sets the pumpkin on the bed. She looks at it for a beat, then closes the blinds, shutting out any hint of the outside.]
[She sits on the bed next to the pumpkin.]
BEVERLY: This is crazy.
[She looks at the pumpkin. Then away. Then at the pumpkin. And away. At the pumpkin. Away. Then she practically lunges at it, reaches in and pulls out a piece of candy.]
[She holds the candy before her. She sniffs it, deeply inhaling its scent. She unwraps it and carefully takes a bite. Slowly. Savoring every morsel. She moans. This is ecstasy.]
[She digs back into the pumpkin and excitedly dumps all the contents onto the bed. She rolls around in the candy. Laughing. Devouring piece after piece after piece.]
[She begins to choke. And then recovers. She's silent for a few moments. Long enough for sadness to set in.]
[MR. GOODBAR appears and sits next to her on the bed. He puts his arm around her.]
MR. GOODBAR: Don't be sad, Bev.
BEVERLY: Holy crap!
MR. GOODBAR: Whoa, whoa, whoa. It's okay.
BEVERLY: Who are you? What are you doing here?!
MR. GOODBAR: You brought me here.
MR. GOODBAR: You brought all of us here.
[He gestures to the candy on the bed.]
MR. GOODBAR: Mr. Goodbar.
BEVERLY: I've had way too much sugar.
MR. GOODBAR: Are you okay, Bev?
BEVERLY: I shouldn't be here.
MR. GOODBAR: You wanted to be alone with us.
MR. GOODBAR: Have another piece of candy.
BEVERLY: I shouldn't.
MR. GOODBAR: If you can't eat candy when you're alone in a seedy motel room, when can you?
[He hands her a piece of candy. She eats it. It makes her happy.]
MR. GOODBAR: That worked, didn't it?
[He sits on the bed with legs outstretched and leans against the headboard.]
BEVERLY: I love chocolate and peanuts.
MR. GOODBAR: That's me. Mr. Goodbar. Chocolate and peanuts.
BEVERLY: I love you.
MR. GOODBAR: C'mere.
[She lays back against him holding the pumpkin on her stomach.]
MR. GOODBAR: Have another.
[She reaches and grabs a mini bag of M&Ms. She rips it open and pulls out an M&M.]
BEVERLY: Who said that?
[An M&M enters in person form.]
M&M: What the heck do you think you're doing?
BEVERLY: I'm...I'm....nothing. Nothing.
MR. GOODBAR: For your information, she is giving herself a break.
MR. GOODBAR: A well-deserved break.
MR. GOODBAR: Hard earned.
BEVERLY: I work so hard.
MR. GOODBAR: And she never gets to eat candy.
BEVERLY: Never. I never do.
M&M: But this isn't your candy to eat.
BEVERLY: Yes it is.
M&M: No it's not. It's Sally's candy.
MR. GOODBAR: Sally?
M&M: Sally. You know. Ten years old. Pig tails. Pirate.
MR. GOODBAR: Oh, the pirate girl. (to BEV) Is this true?
MR. GOODBAR: Bev?
BEVERLY: It's not true.
M&M: It is true. Your daughter Sally earned this candy. She trick or treated for this candy.
MR. GOODBAR: You stole this candy from your daughter?
BEVERLY: I didn't steal it.
MR. GOODBAR: And she made such a cute little pirate.
BEVERLY: She's a pirate every year.
[She reaches for another piece of candy and M&M fights her for it. They fight over the candy.]
M&M: It's not yours!
BEVERLY: Give it!
M&M: I won't let you eat your daughter's candy!
BEVERLY: But I'm helping her!
[BEV rips the candy away from M&M and eats it.]
MR. GOODBAR: You're helping her?
MR. GOODBAR: (to M&M) See? She's helping her.
M&M: How is she helping her?
MR. GOODBAR: (to Bev) How are you helping her?
BEVERLY: Sally's not allowed to eat candy.
M&M: Oh please.
BEVERLY: It's true!
M&M: That's pathetic.
BEVERLY: The kids at school... they make fun of her. They call her Miss Piggy.
MR. GOODBAR: Oh, that's awful. Kids are so mean!
BEVERLY: She comes home in tears some days and won't tell me why. But I know why.
M&M: Because she's fat?
BEVERLY: (softly) Yes.
M&M: So she's a chubster, huh?
MR. GOODBAR: M&M, have some tact.
BEVERLY: She can't help it. She just loves candy so much. And tater tots. And pizza and chips. The other kids eat the same things and they don't get fat. How is that fair? It's not. Not one bit. The other day, I caught her melting cheese on a plate. To eat. As a snack. Just cheese melted on a plate.
M&M: That's disgusting.
BEVERLY: And of all the candy in the world, M&M, you're her favorite. She loves you the most.
MR. GOODBAR: That's sweet. I'm not jealous.
M&M: So Sally's a little chubby McChubster. A piggly wiggly.
MR. GOODBAR: Stop!
M&M: A rolly polly pirate girl?
MR. GOODBAR: Wait a second. The pirate girl was skinny.
M&M: Right. She was a beanpole. The only pig feature about her were her tails.
MR. GOODBAR: So Sally's not fat?
M&M: SallyBev's daughter, the pirate girl, the rightful owner of this here candyis not fat.
MR. GOODBAR: Bev? Is this true?
[BEV ignores the question and eats another piece of candy.]
MR. GOODBAR: It's all a lie?
M&M: You bet it's a lie.
MR. GOODBAR: I don't understand. What kind of person...
M&M: Come on Goodbar, let's get out of here.
MR. GOODBAR: Beverly... why?
M&M: Don't talk to her. She's pathetic! Help me with the candy.
[M&M starts gathering it up. MR. GOODBAR doesn't move.]
M&M: Come on, Goodbar! Help me.
MR. GOODBAR: Bev?!
M&M: Grab the candy.
MR. GOODBAR: Talk to us, Bev!
M&M: Save your breath. She's just gonna lie.
BEVERLY: I can't take it anymore!!
[M&M stops. A long beat. They watch Bev.]
BEVERLY: I'm up every day at five. Every day. Up at five, go for a jog, take a shower, wake Sally, cook breakfastsomething healthyegg whites, flax, kale, organic coffee, sprouted wheat. Sit down with Dave and Sally for breakfast. Eat a tiny portion. Be sure to leave some on the plate. Always leave some on the plate.
Get dressed. Something feminine, flattering. Kiss Dave goodbye. Make sure to give him a little something worth coming back home to.
Check on Sally. Comb her hair. Pack her lunch. Wait with her for the bus. Hug her goodbye. Make sure that hug lasts all day long...that she feels your arms around her even at recess when the mean kids pick on her because their moms don't hug them enough. Then let go. Watch her walk away, board the bus.
Choke back your tears. Taste the salt slide down the back of your throat. Go back inside. Check yourself in the mirror. Ugh. Turn around. Turn back hoping to see someone else. Cross through the kitchen. Pause. Feel the quiet of the empty house. No one watching. What can you eat? Open the pantry, look inside. Grab the jar of peanut butter. Unscrew the lid. Take a whiff. Stick your finger in the jar of peanut butter. Lick it off. Feel someone watching you. Shit. Turn around to face them. No one's there. Put the peanut butter away. Wash your hands, careful to remove any trace of peanut butter. Reapply lipstick. Head out the door. To work. Again.
[A long pause.]
M&M: (a revelation) You used to be fat.
MR. GOODBAR: M&M!
M&M: Oh, please. I know her type. (to BEVERLY) How much?
BEVERLY: My stomach hurts.
M&M: A hundred? Huh? How much?
MR. GOODBAR: A hundred what?
M&M: Pounds. (to BEV) Come on. How much did you lose?
BEVERLY: This isn't fun anymore.
M&M: She stole hard earned Halloween candy from her daughter, ditched work and checked herself into a seedy motel to eat it.
BEVERLY: There's something wrong with me.
MR. GOODBAR: She can't help it.
BEVERLY: I'm a terrible person.
M&M: I'd bet at least 110. Am I right? You lost 110 pounds?
MR. GOODBAR: Why 110?
M&M: She's got at least another whole person in here. (she points at her head) And she walks like she used to waddle.
[BEVERLY throws a piece of candy at M&M and hits her in the head.]
MR. GOODBAR: That wasn't nice.
BEVERLY: You're supposed to make me feel better.
MR. GOODBAR: It's okay. Here. Have a Kit Kat.
BEVERLY: I don't want a Kit Kat.
MR. GOODBAR: Sure you do. It always makes you feel better.
[She takes the Kit Kat and unwraps it. She takes a bite and disappears into her happy place.]
M&M: No amount of candy will be enough to bury it for good. To make you forget about the chubby little girl nobody loves who melts cheese on a plate and sneaks french fries when nobody's looking and eats M&Ms like we were candy coated pieces of happiness.
MR. GOODBAR: You are candy coated pieces of happiness.
M&M: Thank you. I mean, we try.
[She finishes the Kit Kat. Swallows slowly and reaches for another piece.]
M&M: You better not.
MR. GOODBAR: Yeah, you probably shouldn't.
M&M: Uh, cuz you'll get fat.
BEVERLY: I'm already fat.
MR. GOODBAR: No.
M&M: She's fat on the inside.
MR. GOODBAR: M&M!
M&M: (to BEV) Maybe you should... (looking at the bathroom) ...you know. (sticking finger down throat.)
BEVERLY: I don't do that!
MR. GOODBAR: Then what are you gonna do?
M&M: What are you gonna tell Sally?
MR. GOODBAR: She'll probably be missing her candy.
M&M: And Dave.
MR. GOODBAR: You'll just have to go back and pretend like this never happened.
M&M: Buy more candy for Sally.
MR. GOODBAR: Fill up the pumpkin. Put it back in her room. Cook a healthy dinner.
M&M: Vegan butternut squash soup and Baby Arugula salad.
MR. GOODBAR: With pine nuts.
M&M: With pine nuts.
MR. GOODBAR: Just pretend this never happened. You can do that. You're good at pretending.
BEVERLY: I stole candy from my own daughter.
MR. GOODBAR: It's okay.
BEVERLY: She could eat this whole pumpkin and not gain a pound.
M&M: Poor Sally.
BEVERLY: I won't do it again.
MR. GOODBAR: I know.
BEVERLY: Vegan butternut squash soup.
MR. GOODBAR: And Baby Arugula salad.
BEVERLY: With pine nuts.
MR. GOODBAR: A healthy supper.
BEVERLY: We'll sit down at the table.
MR. GOODBAR: Like any other day.
BEVERLY: And say grace.
MR. GOODBAR: And it will all be okay.
M&M: And if not...
MR. GOODBAR: We're always here for you.
[A long beat.]
BEVERLY: (I wish I didn't need you) I know.
[Lights fade to black as BEVERLY slowly puts herself back together.]
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Copyright © 2008 by Stephanie Alison Walker
CAUTION: Professionals and amateurs are hereby warned that The Chocolate Affair is subject to a royalty. It is fully protected under the copyright laws of the United States of America, and of all countries covered by the International Copyright Union (including the Dominion of Canada and the rest of the British Commonwealth), and of all countries covered by the Pan-American Copyright convention and the Universal Copyright Convention, and of all countries with which the United States has reciprocal copyright relations. All rights, including professional and amateur stage performing, motion picture, recitation, lecturing, public reading, radio broadcasting, television, video or sound taping, all other forms of mechanical or electronic reproduction, such as information storage and retrieval systems and photocopying, and the rights of translation into foreign languages, are strictly reserved.
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