I have had this conversation in my head for a week now and I wasn’t sure how to write it out. First I tried it like an interview. That was okay, but I quickly realized that the format really lent itself to theater. So I reworked it as a one act play. I haven’t done writing for the theater in years. I left out all the stage directions so as not to bore everyone to death.
Special thanks to Maleesha who offered me some helpful editing. Your suggestions rocked!!
A Conversation With Myself.
A Play in one act.
Written and copyrighted by George Parnell, 2009.
Setting: Bare stage with a desk. One chair behind the desk and two in front. A single spotlight shines on the center of the scene.
ME: Heart? Thanks for coming in today. We need to have a serious talk….
HEART: Really? What’s troubling you George? You seem upset and worried and…
ME: Ok, look…I know you are my heart and it’s part of your shtick to be all emotional and caring and worrying about me, but I have to ask you to just stop and listen to me for a minute.
M: I have to ask you for a big favor…
H: I will do what I can.
M: I need you to stop chasing after these hopeless and pointless infatuations.
H: Um, stop? You do realize that’s part of my job description right?
M: What do you mean?
H: Well it says right here in my Terms of Service that as your heart, I have free reign to blindly go forward, chasing after the dreams that you and your rational mind may deem unnecessary and distracting. By this contract, I have the right and the mandate to pursue the very things that you are afraid to pursue.
M: Don’t you understand that what you do is……..
H: What I do is necessary and you have no recourse or ability to reign me in.
M: Wait, wait…slow down here… You don’t have to quote from the Employee Handbook for George, ok?Now, I know full well what your function is. And, may I say you do a fine job.
H: Thank you…that’s touching…
M: But what you have been doing lately? You recent activities have been detrimental to the whole company, so to speak. Your ambitions and activities have caused me more than a few sleepless nights…
H: That’s just you over thinking…
M: Let me finish. You have been going in 100 directions at once. We need to find a way for you to have a little focus and perspective and…
H: Focus and perspective??? Pssssh! That’s your job! Intellect and rationale? That’s all you! Me? I am governed by whimsy and lust. I find what you desire most and then your job is to sort out the details.
M: But while you fixate so much on the impossible and unattainable, I find myself missing out on perfectly good opportunities around me. We need to work together.
H: No we don’t. Without me, you would have no dreams, no aspirations and no hope.
M: Ok, that’s a little extreme…
H: Is it really?
M: I think so, yes.
H: Hmmmmm… And what “opportunities” are you missing out on around you? Do tell…
M: Well, for starters, I ran into an ex girlfriend the other day….
H: Wait wait wait wait!! Is that what this is about? You run into an ex girlfriend and you think I should have felt something? Is that it?
M: Well, yeah….I mean, did you see what she was wearing?
H: Noooo! For Crying out loud! Don’t you remember? We have been down that road already with her and in case you didn’t notice, I still have the scars….
M: Oh she didn’t break you that bad….
H: Typical! And you wonder why I don’t return most of your calls… Do you really want to give her the opportunity to put us through the ringer again? Really? I’m sorry; I’m not with you on that at all.
M: Well, it was just a thought, but definitely a far more realistic thought than your ambitions. Why are you so weak for anyone with red hair?
H: It’s not a weakness and I think you and I both know it’s not just red hair. It’s a smile, the way she cranes her neck, a soft giggle….
M: Allright, settle down…
H: I’m just sayin’….. And it’s not just the redhead. You know what I’m talking about….
H: There’s the blonde….
M: Mmm the blonde, *sighs* She is really sweet…
H: And don’t forget that sales girl you fell head over ass for….
M: See that’s different, she at least goes to the same bars I go to…
H: And then there’s that brunette…. Rawr! She just rocks your little world, doesn’t she?
M: Ah yes, the brunette….Well, to be honest, yeah she definitely leaves me a little breathless….but wait! That’s not the point!! You are getting me off track again! Look! Bottom line is this; I want you to come on board and work with me. I want a goal that’s attainable.You don’t have to be all logical like me. Baby steps, my friend. If we work together, maybe we can work towards some of your goals and some of my goals and find a happy medium.
H: But you see, that’s completely against my nature. My purpose here is to be that ridiculous driving force behind your ambitions. I have to give you outlandish goals, aspire for love from unattainable women, and make your pulse race every time you catch a glimpse of red hair. I give you that excitement when you see your name in print when your art is being shown someplace. I’m that swelling of pride when someone compliments you on your writing or a painting.
H: I am your core.
It is up to you to decipher and discover what you truly want. If I stopped doing my job and didn’t present you with hundreds of directions, as you put it, where would that leave you? No ambition, no hope. Sure, you have some sleepless nights because of me and yes, I know that love and lust and dating are complex issues! But when it comes to matters of the heart, the Handbook clearly states, “It’s complicated”.
M: Really? The hand book just says that?
H: The heart wants what the heart wants and there’s nothing you can do about it.
M: But don’t you see? That’s the very heart of the problem!
H: …….Very funny. Oh you and your whitty puns….
M: Sorry, no pun intended. It’s just that I want things to be neat and organized. I want to meet someone, fall in love, get married and live a little of the American dream. But because of all your distractions, I can’t!
H: Am I that distracting?
M: Are you kidding? Lets have a look at what a typical day is with you: Let’s paint this week! Think I’ll try my hand at writing! Oooh I got a new camera! I must be a photographer now! Let’s ignore the bills and go waste money on art supplies. Hey, Best Buy is having a sale! New Computer! Oh and don’t get me started on the women! A simple smile or a kind word from anyone of the female persuasion and you are off to the races, my friend. You seem to tell me that every positive gesture, a touch, a smile, a kind word is some sign that she’s interested.
H: But what if they really are interested and you are just selling yourself short, like I’ve been telling you for years now.
M: ……. I hadn’t thought of that.
H: And that’s why you need me. Ha
M: Ok, I get it. But you have to work with me. I can’t have you running off all the time. I swear, you are worse than a three year old sometimes. But instead of “Hey look! Shiny!”, it’s “Hey look! Breasts!” and you are off being distracted from what really needs to be done. Can you at least agree to try to work with me?
H: Well, I guess I could fixate more on their legs and asses if that would help…
M: Hold onto that thought. What I need you to do is to limit the amount of time we spend distracted by red hair and breasts and smiles. Do you remember the time we got on the wrong train in Boston and ended up on a nonstop train to Braintree all because you were distracted by some red hair?
H: Ok, that story is so old it deserves a place in a retirement community…
M: The point is, let’s work together.
H: ……..I don’t know….it goes against everything I stand for….
M: Please? I’m begging you here….
H: I can’t make any promises. I am driven by your deepest desires. Sometimes, I’m going to disappoint you. Sometimes, I’m going to let you down. You have to accept that we are often at cross-purposes.
M: I can live with that as long as you agree to keep those distractions to a minimum just so I can attain a few of my short-term goals without being sidetracked. Deal?
H: Deal. But please, for both of us, do NOT call that ex girlfriend again. That would be embarrassing for both of us I think.
M: Fine. But don’t blame me if passing on the opportunity to get laid causes me to stare uncontrollably at the bouncing bits at the gym.
H: You want to be the creepy staring guy at the gym now?
M: Shut up, that’s not what I meant.
H: Sure, but you may want to speak to the Id about that.
M: I know, he should be here anytime now. I told him we were having this meeting….
ID: You wanted to see me?
M: Yes Id, thanks for coming and FOR CHRIST’S SAKE! Would you please pull your pants up?!!!!
ID: Sorry, I was surfing the web for porn earlier and….
M: Allright! Allright! Now look Id, sit down, we have to have a serious talk…..