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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Dropout (05/12/11)

TITLE: His Heart's Not In It
By Nancy Bucca


Scene I
Setting: An ordinary lackluster home

The curtain opens on Abe Goodenov, super short Moses wanna-be with a thick Russian accent and poorly fitting beard. In one hand he holds a tall, pointy dunce cap, in the other a big bag of coins. To his right stands a tall boy, Jacob, wearing a business suit two sizes too small. Both have kippahs on their heads, Jacob a big star of David on his chest. They are discussing Jacob's future.

Abe: Good news, son, I have decided your career. You will be dentist. Go drilling school, learn make fillings, make dying father proud.

Jacob: But I want to be a singer.

Abe (adjusting his beard): You will be dentist, pull much teeth, make much money. (He rattles the bag for emphasis)

Jacob: Superstars make TONS of money.

(Abe hits him with the bag)

Jacob: Ow! Stop it! That hurts!

Abe (continuing to hit): I did not raise my son to be idol. You will be dentist, not diva! Through you I live dream. Vie care... vie care...

Jacob: Vicariously?

Abe: Yes, that is word I look for. Is dream I live through you.

Jacob: Oh, who cares about your dumb dream?

Abe: Who cares? Grandfather would roll over in grave to hear such doubt spoken in this theater.

Jacob: I can't believe I signed up for this stupid play, with someone I'm not even remotely related to.

Abe: Shhh! Not so loud, or everyone learn secret - that you are JEW!

Jacob (sighing): Shout that to the whole world, why don't you?

Abe (muttering under his breath): Good thing is not dress rehearsal. Here. Put on disguise. (He sets down the bag and mashes the pointy hat onto Jacob's head). There! Now you look just like Syrian!

Jacob: I feel like an idiot.

Abe (escorting Jacob off stage): Stop act like wet blanket. Act like actor, no one find out.

Jacob: Find out what? That I'm really a spy?

Abe: Oy! What I do, Grandfather? What I do?

Scene II

Setting: A dentist office with a lawn chair on one end and a card table on the other. On the table lie various assorted items, such as a bow drill, a magnifying glass, and Abe's money bag.

Enter King Ben Hadad, tromping into the room with Chinese carryout-eating Hazael. Hadad plops into the lawn chair so hard his crown falls off. Quick-thinking Hazael retrieves it with chopsticks from the open carryout box. Meanwhile Doctor Omar walks in, a rolled scroll in his hand. Following him is foot-dragging Jacob.

Omar (showing him the scroll): You want this.

Jacob: What is it?

Omar: Well, duh, just a diploma from Damascus Dental School. You are the new intern, right?

Hazael (loudly smacking on lo mein): He's a Jewish spy.

Jacob: Huh?

Hazael: Why else would he be wearing that loser hat?

Hadad: I don't know. To send a message?

Omar (to Jacob): So what do you say, boy? Ready to hunt for cavities?

Jacob: I - uh - guess so.

Omar: Go ahead. Do your stuff.

Jacob (cautiously bending his face toward Hadad's): Uh... Er... Open wide.

Hadad: Ahhh.

Jacob (stepping back): Ooh, gross! That's got to be the yuckiest plaque I've ever seen. (He faces the audience grimacing) Looks like a lion's den and smells like one too.

Omar (whacking him with the diploma): Mind your manners before royalty.

Jacob: But it's nasty.

Omar (pointing to the hostage diploma): If you want this, you must finish the exam.

Jacob: I think I'll pass.

Omar: Not if you refuse the lion's den.

Jacob: Forget it, I'm out of here. (He removes his dunce cap and flings it to the ground. Omar gasps and Hazael drops his chopsticks as Jacob exits with the money bag)

Hazael: Told you he was a Jewish spy.

Hadad: Spy or not, he's a dropout. A rotten tooth. A wet blanket in times of trouble. His kind of quitter attitude can smother anyone's faith. By the way, what did Elisha say when you asked him about my cancer? Will I be healed?

Hazael (chuckling): Oh, well, you know how it is with that crazy faith healer. "Sure, he'll recover." That's what he tells all the guys.

Hadad: He's not one to give up, is he?

Hazael: And neither am I.

He reaches for Omar's outstretched scroll/diploma and spreads it over Hadad's face. Down comes the curtain. The end.

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Member Comments
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Sara Harricharan 05/21/11
What an interesting mini-play. Quite the cast of characters and a singular thread of humor throughout--quite a bit to fit into such a short piece of 750 words. Thanks for sharing!
Troy Manning05/27/11
Entertaining read. :) I liked the dad's straight-forward remark about living vicariously through his son. His speech resembled the way the Chinese are portrayed as speaking English, so when Hazael enters eating Chinese take-out I was wondering if there was a connection. Nice job of keeping the interactions engaging!