Gekko – A penis, in his sixties. Weathered yet resilient. Paul Reubens was the first choice but he has since turned down the role, claiming that it is “beneath him”. Corey Feldman has expressed interest and negotiations are pending. His constant emails and phone calls are becoming a problem.
Issur – A male body part of indecipherable description, due to advanced age of said appendage. Father of Gekko. Tommy Lee Jones has been approached for the role, via his agent. There has been no reply to date. We remain hopeful.
Waitress – Twenty-something. Thin yet large-chested. Aspirations to be a thespian and take Hollywood by storm. Would happily accept a starring role in a porn film, if the part were “artistically resonant”. Corey Feldman has expressed an interest in this role as well. Rebecca De Mornay has been considered.
Canter’s Deli on Fairfax Avenue, Hollywood California, U.S.A.. Gekko and Issur have a booth towards the back of the deli.
Half an hour into the future.
ABOUT THE STAGING:
The set is intended as a performance space. There is a table and a booth. Costumes and props are always visible. The basic costumes are the ones worn by the company of actors. Costumes to portray the actors should be simple yet elegant: a shirt, some designer prescription eyewear, possibly a headpiece of some description. The goal is to suggest, not to recreate. With this in mind, this is a character-driven piece.
NARRATOR: Increasingly despondent, Gekko seeks solace from his troubles in the company of his father, Issur. Canter’s Deli on Fairfax has been a rendezvous spot for the two men for many years, dating back to Gekko’s youth. Here, at this Tinseltown institution, the two have shared hopes and dreams, troubles and doubts, fears and triumphs. Many a revelation has been uncovered within these hallowed walls. Life has been solved here, generally over matzoh ball soup and pastrami on rye.
ISSUR: I don’t know why you get so wound up about this stuff, Gek. This is life. It gets tough from time to time. And it never ends well for anyone. You should know this as well as anyone.
GEKKO: I know, Dad, I really do. And I get it. It wasn’t meant to be easy.
ISSUR: So your friend is dying. I understand. I can assure you that I sympathize.
GEKKO: It’s more than just that, Dad, and I think you know that.
ISSUR: Is it? Is there more to know? What else is there?
GEKKO: Yes, there’s much more. I feel personally responsible for the whole thing.
ISSUR: How so?
GEKKO: Colt doesn’t make a move without me. I’ve inspired everything he’s ever done.
ISSUR: I think someone’s getting a bit cocky.
GEKKO: No, I’m really not, Dad. Ask Colt yourself, he’ll collaborate my claims.
ISSUR: No, I won’t be doing that. So lay it on me. Why are you blaming yourself for this?
GEKKO: As you know, we’re both involved romantically with Zeta.
ISSUR: A beguiling woman, if ever I saw one.
GEKKO: Yes. She is rather fond of you too, Dad.
ISSUR: Of course. What’s not to like?
GEKKO: Ahem. Indeed.
ISSUR: Enough pleasantries. What’s the frequency, Kenneth?
GEKKO: Pardon? I’m Gekko by the way.
ISSUR: I know. It’s an expression.
GEKKO: It is? Not a well-known one, just to give you the tip.
ISSUR: Regardless. Get to the point.
GEKKO: Okay. So we’re both involved with the lovely Zeta and Colt claims that she is directly responsible for his illness.
ISSUR: Really? I don’t see a connection.
GEKKO: He claims her secretions lead to him getting HPV.
GEKKO: Human papillomavirus. Why am I the only one who knows what this is?
ISSUR: Know it? Son, I’ve lived through that motherfucker on eight separate occasions! I’ve just never heard it abbreviated like that. It disarmed me, truth be told. HPV is easy though. You just treat it with rubbing alcohol and a wire coat hanger. Good as new within three days of symptoms.
GEKKO: Really? That’s it?
ISSUR: That’s the problem with your generation, see. Everything’s a fucking production. No way it made your friend sick, let alone terminally ill.
GEKKO: But he’s dying of cancer. He told me himself. The doctors say there isn’t much time.
A shapely young waitress approaches the table, scratches her head with a pen.
WAITRESS: Hello. I’m Diane. May I take your order?
ISSUR: Please do. I’ll have the lox and a pitcher of iced water.
WAITRESS: Got it.
ISSUR: Bottled, not tap.
WAITRESS: Excuse me?
ISSUR: The water. I want bottled water, not from the tap.
WAITRESS: Oh. That’s fine. Not a problem. And you?
GEKKO: I’ll grab Matt’s Special and a side of potato salad. I’ll also grab a root beer. Diet if you have it.
WAITRESS: We don’t, sorry.
GEKKO: That’s strange. Just a low-calorie soda is fine. Any will do.
The waitress takes their menus and leaves for the kitchen.
ISSUR: Hot waitress.
GEKKO: Shit yes. Blood is relocating as we speak.
ISSUR: California does weird things with its water supply. I need to keep my immune system resilient, what with winter approaching. Bottled water seems the safer option at this juncture.
GEKKO: Sure thing, Dad. But where do you think their get their bottled water from?
ISSUR: The mountainous regions of Switzerland, I assume. Why?
GEKKO: Never mind. So I was telling you about Colt?
ISSUR: Still? Haven’t we resolved this?
GEKKO: Not as far as I’m concerned. Zeta feels awful about the whole thing.
ISSUR: Well tell her to not be. We’re men. We know the dangers associated with the whole thing well ahead of time. Any good man will happily die for a good piece of prime vagina. We know that going in, pun intended.
GEKKO: Colt seems anything but happy at the moment, let me tell you.
ISSUR: Again, this is just you and your whiny fucking generation doing what it does best. Good sex should come with a souvenir. Some people get herpes. Others get something worse. Your friend falls into the latter category, but that’s the crap-shoot that is sexual congress in the modern age.
GEKKO: Okay. Thanks, Dad. That really puts things into perspective for me.
ISSUR: I help where I can.
GEKKO: It was causing a rift between Zeta and I, a big rift.
ISSUR: You’re welcome. Just remember: there’s no pleasure without pain.
GEKKO: Sound advice. I love you, Dad.
ISSUR: Ditto, my friend.