Look, I kept it as close to the original formatting as possible! This is for class. It's dedicated to Murphy's Lawyer and IdeasInTheAir for reasons that aren't that obvious yet, but will be. ;D


PEACE, LOVE, UNTIED SNEAKERS

A One Act Play

by

Qzie

SETTING: Tessa's living room. There's a small table and a couch both facing the audience. There's a small trash can next to the couch. There is a notebook and pencil on the table, and a door to SL. TIME: Late evening.

CHARACTERS

MARTY: In his mid-twenties, hyperactive, very unfortunate, doesn't think.

TESSA: In her mid-twenties, Marty's friend, sensible, too kind for her own good.

ASHLEY: Canadian mob leader, stern, informal, reasonable.

CHESTER: Canadian hit man, intimidating, his bark is worse than his bite.

Scene One

(Lights up on TESSA, who is sitting on the floor with a pencil in her hand. She's looking at the notebook)

TESSA

Every time I'm around you

My knees get a little weaker

(There are several thudding sounds as MARTY pounds on the door. TESSA sighs, shaking her head, and gets up to let him in. MARTY looks a little annoyed as he steps inside. He has a backpack that looks like it's been packed to the point of explosion)

MARTY

I was getting it.

TESSA

I was wondering when you would try to break in again. It's been almost a week now.

(She grins and MARTY laughs dryly)

MARTY

Wait, that reminds me… I'm hungry.

(He runs off to SR. TESSA shakes her head and sits back down on the couch)

TESSA

What's the next lyric, Marty? Every time I'm around you

My knees get a little weaker…

(MARTY comes back in from SR with a pudding cup and a spoon)

MARTY

I have a pudding cup

Peace, love, untied sneakers!

(He grins when TESSA stares at him)

Known you since middle school and I still get the my-God-you're-crazy look.

(He starts struggling with opening the pudding cup)

TESSA

"Peace, love, untied sneakers?"

MARTY

Yeah, why not? It rhymes, it's catchy, it's- open, confound you- a good lyric. Can you open this Pudding Cup from Hell?

(Holds out the pudding cup and TESSA takes it)

TESSA

So, tell me… why were you trying to break in today?

(Opens the pudding cup easily and gives it back)

MARTY

…I loosened it. That's why it was so easy for you.

TESSA

Certainly, Martin. Now explain your presence.

MARTY

Oh, you know, just stuff.

(He puts his backpack down)

You mind if I spend the night? I don't really have anywhere else to go.

TESSA

No, I don't mind… what did you do?

MARTY

It's a long and boring story. You don't wanna hear it. What's this thing here?

(Picks up the notebook and starts grinning)

Awww. It's a love song!

(Starts scanning it while pacing)

TESSA

Yes Martin, it is. I'm writing it for my friend who has issues.

(Stands up and tries to take back the notebook, but fails)

Not you. This friend has less issues than you.

MARTY

Everybody has less issues than me. It's what makes me special. Why're you writing this malarkey?

TESSA

Because he asked me to.

(Grabs at the notebook, but in vain)

And he said please.

(MARTY gives TESSA the notebook back. He starts circling the room while eating the pudding. TESSA sets the notebook back on the table)

MARTY

I like my song better.

(Stops in place and uses the spoon as a microphone)

When I need something to fill me up, when I start feeling too much weaker, I grab myself a pudding cup- peace, love, UNTIED SNEAKERS!

(Continues pacing and finishing off the pudding)

TESSA

Did you just make that up off the top of your head?

MARTY

Yep. Jealous?

TESSA

Considering it's about pudding… not really. So why do you keep changing the subject?

(She sits down and starts doodling on the notebook)

MARTY

Better question. Why are you writing a song with no mention of sneakers or pudding?

TESSA

Same reason you won't tell me why you tried to break in.

MARTY

(Amazed)

I didn't know you pissed off the Mob.

(Starts spinning the empty pudding cup with the spoon)

TESSA

(Laughs)

Marty!

MARTY

Why are you laughing? It's not good to piss off people who use natural bodies of water as graveyards, and it's even less funny!

(Stops spinning the pudding cup)

That sentence was less awkward in my head.

(Continues spinning the pudding cup)

Don't make enemies with the Mob, Tessa. Unless it's the Canadian Mob. The worst they'll do is give you the disappointed look. They might put a bottle of glue under your bed sheets. Go ahead and make enemies with them.

TESSA

…The Canadian Mob, right. I hope you're kidding.

MARTY

I'm always kidding.

TESSA

Why are you here?

(Pause. TESSA seems to regret her words)

MARTY

Well… when a man and a woman love each other very much-

TESSA

STOP! Stop right there! You need help.

MARTY

That's right I need help. With the Canadian Mob.

TESSA

You're really obsessing over the Mob. Why?

MARTY

Why not? It's funny.

TESSA

It gets old after a little while.

MARTY

The Mob never gets old.

TESSA

Yes they do. Very quickly.

MARTY

The Mob all wear sneakers… so they can be sneaky!

(Starts laughing. TESSA cringes)

TESSA

…Terrible. That was terrible.

MARTY

I wonder what their stance on pudding is.

TESSA

Marty, if you've joined the Mob, now is the time to say it.

(Pause.)

MARTY

(Very serious)

Tessa, I have to tell you something…

TESSA

Dear God, you've joined the Mob.

MARTY

(Breaks down laughing)

No. I didn't. I can't believe you actually thought that.

TESSA

Not amused, Sneaker-and-Pudding-Boy.

MARTY

Why on earth would I join the Mob? Maybe they need comic relief. Even evil ne'er-do-wells need a laugh every now and again. Hmm. Maybe I will join the Mob.

TESSA

Just for the attention?

MARTY

Especially for the attention. Speaking of attention, what's up with this super depressing line?

(Kneels down next to TESSA and points at a line in the notebook)

"At least in dreams you'll look at me." Tessa, it makes me want to slit my wrists and admit you into therapy.

(Continues his pacing)

TESSA

Admit me? Right after you.

MARTY

You should change it to "At least I still have my pudding." It's much better.

TESSA

What is it with you and pudding tonight?

MARTY

Pudding is good. Change it.

(Nudges the notebook)

TESSA

Marty, no. It's not supposed to be a happy song.

MARTY

Why not change it?

TESSA

It's bad writing.

MARTY

Bad writing is good for the soul and also white blood cells.

TESSA

What?

(MARTY points dramatically at TESSA)

MARTY

It's people like you that get people like me hunted by the Canadian Mob! You lack vision!

TESSA

(Sarcastically)

Is that why you have to spend the night here now? Because the Canadians are after you?

MARTY

They lack vision!

TESSA

You need psychiatric help.

(Pause)

And a bodyguard.

MARTY

Never said I didn't. You probably need help, too.

TESSA

I do not need help.

MARTY

You're trying to write a song with nothing original about it. You need help. You can have "Peace, love, untied sneakers!" I don't need it. I'm on the run from Canadians.

TESSA

Wait… are you serious?

MARTY

They don't care about you. They don't even know you exist. I made sure when I got into their hard drives that they didn't.

TESSA

Dear Lord, I think he's actually running away from Canadians.

MARTY

Geez, you're quick on the uptake. Why would you think I was kidding about being on the run?

TESSA

Because this whole thing sounds like a big joke!

MARTY

Even I know that's a stupid thing to joke about! Honestly, Tessa. First you go emo on me and then you can't tell the difference between when I'm kidding and when I'm being serious.

(Gives TESSA the disappointed look)

TESSA

I am very ashamed of myself.

MARTY

You should be.

(Pause)

What am I gonna do, Tessa?

TESSA

Maybe you could go down to the police station and tell them that the Canadians are after you.

MARTY

Can't. They'll make me go into Witness Protection and the thought of that is creepy.

TESSA

But you'll be safe.

MARTY

What if they make me live in Canadia?

TESSA

Canada. And they won't do that.

(Pause)

How did you make enemies with the Canadian Mob anyways?

MARTY

You want the truth?

(TESSA nods)

I took the last bottle of maple syrup right in front of their leader.

TESSA

…What.

MARTY

I know- I didn't think it was such a big deal, either, but they don't think the same way we do, Tessa! They're crazy! They started… stalking me. I never saw them, but there were subtle clues that they were out to get me.

TESSA

Like what?

MARTY

Like… I kept finding Canadian change, like quarters and nickels. Then, um, I would come home and hear the radio playing their music. Like…

TESSA

The O Canada song?

MARTY

Worse. Black Eyed Peas.

TESSA

Those guys are American.

MARTY

No they aren't! They were playing when I came home; therefore, they're Canadian!

TESSA

I think you're just being paranoid now.

(MARTY looks shocked that she doesn't believe him)

MARTY

I didn't tell you the worst of it!

TESSA

What's the worst of it?

(MARTY stops spinning the pudding cup and sits down next to TESSA)

MARTY

…I think they're brainwashing me.

TESSA

Yeah, you are just being paranoid.

MARTY

No! Yesterday… yesterday I ended my sentence with, Eh? If that isn't brainwashing, I don't know what it is.

TESSA

It could be you having issues.

(Pause)

MARTY

It could be. But it's highly unlikely!

(He stands back up and spins the pudding cup)

TESSA

Martin. Be realistic. Do you honestly think the Canadian Mob would hunt you down just because you took a bottle of syrup?

MARTY

…Well… when you put it that way, it does sound a little crazy.

TESSA

A little.

MARTY

Yeah… I'm bored with this conversation.

(Stops spinning the pudding cup and drops it on the table)

What about your song?

TESSA

What about it?

MARTY

You should just start over. Rip it up.

TESSA

What? No.

MARTY

I'm telling you, nobody is going to like that song. It's too depressing.

TESSA

A lot of people like sad songs.

MARTY

They are called "emo kids" and they don't count.

TESSA

You are incredibly mean at times, Marty.

MARTY

And I'm OK with it. What if you wrote an adventurous song! It'll be about pudding cups and sneakers and the Canadian Mob and then you can make it all romantic and crap.

TESSA

You have the soul of a poet.

MARTY

Try not to envy me for it.

TESSA

Like… If I were on the run from the Canadian mob because I took their maple syrup-

MARTY

That won't work.

TESSA

Why not?

MARTY

Nothing good rhymes with syrup.

TESSA

It doesn't have to rhyme.

MARTY

I say it does.

TESSA

You know what? I say I'm too tired to have this conversation.

MARTY

Fine. Be that way.

TESSA

(Standing up)

Fine. I will.

MARTY

Can I still stay the night just to be safe?

TESSA

Yeah, sure.

(Starts to leave to SR)

MARTY

Tessa?

TESSA

Hmmm?

MARTY

What if I was right and the Canadians really are after me?

TESSA

Well… you always got me.

(Pause)

Goodnight, Marty.

MARTY

'Night, Tessa.

(Watches as TESSA leaves, then immediately rips out her song. He picks up the pencil and writes on the new page)

I beat the Canadian Mob- peace, love, UNTIED SNEAKERS!

(Lights fade out)


Thanks for reading! ^^ Have some hot chocolate. It's chilly out. Well, at least it is here.

Scene two is thataway--