Directed by Blake Weirs
Featuring Andre Abrahamians & Michael Catlett
Grumpo and Slumpo are sitting playing a game of checkers. They are both wearing Groucho Marx glasses and have large cigars. They wear white shirts with bow ties, dark coats, and top hats. This is what everyone in their homogeneous society wears all the time. It defines the lives of everyone.
Before speaking they each make one or two moves on the checkers board.
Grumpo pulls out a deck of cards from his coat pocket.
GRUMPO (to Slumpo) Hey Slumpo, pick a card, any card, any card at all.
Grumpo fans the deck and Slumpo picks a card. Grumpo goes back to playing checkers.
SLUMPO Well Grumpo, what do I do with it?
GRUMPO Keep it, it’s yours, I have fifty one more.
SLUMPO Always the comedian.
Slumpo tosses the card over his shoulder.
PAUSE, Both concentrate on checkers game.
GRUMPO Hey, you know what Beethoven’s favorite fruit is?
SLUMPO No, but I’m sure you’re going to tell me….
GRUMPO Banaaaaaaanaaaanaaaaaa! (Beethoven – Symphony No. 5 in C Minor)
Grumpo laughs heartily at his own joke.
GRUMPO Hey, here’s one for you, “What do you call a psychic midget who has escaped from prison.”
SLUMPO I don’t know. What do you call a psychic midget who has escaped from prison?
GRUMPO A small medium at large!
SLUMPO I don’t think you’re supposed to say “midget” anymore. I think they want to be called “little people” now.
GRUMPO That reminds me. “What did one little person say to the other little person while he was sitting on the swing?”
Pause. Slumpo just stares at Grumpo
GRUMPO “Hold on, I’ll push you in a midget!”
Grumpo laughs uncontrollably at his own joke. Slumpo stares. Both go back to the checkers game.
SLUMPO Grumpo, I need to tell you something. It’s important. I’m not sure how to say it really , but it I have to tell you or my cigar might explode from the stress.
GRUMPO Fine. Stand up then.
SLUMPO Why do I need to stand up?
GRUMPO Because I have to tell you to sit down.
GRUMPO Now, sit down!
SLUMPO That felt sort of contrived and meaningless.
GRUMPO Stand back up then.
Slumpo stands and sits a number of times unsure what to do. Finally he stays up.
SLUMPO I need to say this. I’ve wanted to say it for years. I’m tortured. It’s making me nuts. I feel like I should be sent to the looney bin… I mean I should have seen psychiatrist years ago. I feel like I’m going crazy!
GRUMPO Hey that reminds me. How does a crazy person travel in the forest? He takes the psychopath!
SLUMPO Listen to me you fool! I have never… I mean, I have always… no never… no always.. no never… felt… like a real Marxian. I feel as though I’ve just been pretending my entire life. It’s been utter hell.
GRUMPO I had a cow once named Elsie, her utters were hell. Squeeze and squeeze and pull and pull, nothing but milk of magnesia.
SLUMPO Would you just shut up and be serious for one second!
GRUMPO Sure, one alligator. Time’s up.
SLUMPO I’m trying to tell you something here….. Ever since I was two or three years old, I just felt like I wasn’t meant to wear these glasses, this mustache, dress like this, always have an oversized cigar in my pocket. On Saturday mornings I didn’t want to watch “Duck (Grumpo ducks) Soup” anymore. All I wanted to do was turn the channel.
GRUMPO You lost me at soup.
SLUMPO Inside.. deep inside..at the very essence of my being..I feel like.. and this is even hard for me to say after all these years. I feel like I’m a Stoogian, not a Marxian. There, I said it. On the outside I know I look Marxian, but on the inside I feel more like Curly or Moe or Larry than Groucho or Harpo.
Grumpo stands and begins to slowly circle Slumpo with a classic Groucho Marx gait. He’s menacing and angry.
GRUMPO Who do you think you are? You think you are the only one to feel lost; to feel like a sheep in wolf’s clothing? Believe me there are plenty of stooges walking the streets, but they don’t just let it hang out there for the world to see.
SLUMPO Well….yes. I guess there are others.. I don’t know.
Grumpo continues to circle Slumpo. Finally he stops and pulls out a gun and points it at Slumpo.
GRUMPO I’m sorry but this is a travesty. I can’t allow it in my home. It’s a cosmic joke is what it is. Any last words?
SLUMPO Please….I just want you to know that I have always loved you.
GRUMPO You believe that you can just think whatever you want? That you can just “be yourself”? That’s not free-dom! It’s free-lancing! Say your prayers, you traitor.
Finally Grumpo pulls the trigger and out pops one of those flags that say BANG on it. It’s a toy gun. Grumpo starts to laugh hysterically. Slowly Slumpo removes his glasses, puts down the cigar, and takes off the tie. From out of his coat pocket he pulls out a Larry Fine wig (Larry from the Three Stooges) and puts it on.
SLUMPO Woop, woop, woop, woop, you nit wit… nyuk, nyuk, nyuk, nyuk,…..etc…(three stooges noises, does some Three Stooges physical movements).
GRUMPO Get out! Just get out and never come back. I hate you. You’re a joke! You ought to have your head examined! Go, you schmo!
SLUMPO Are you serious?
GRUMPO As a heart attack.
Slumpo slowly exits making sad Three Stooges sounds as he goes, the volume of which decreases slowly as he exits into the wings. Grumpo sits; dejected. Grumpo stares out into the audience and begins to sing very sadly.
Music of Lydia begins to play…
GRUMPO Lydia, oh Lydia, say, have you met Lydia? Lydia the tattooed lady She has eyes that men adore so And a torso even more so Lydia, oh Lydia, that encyclopedia Lydia, the queen of tattoo On her back is the Battle of Waterloo Beside it the Wreck of the Hesperus, too And proudly above waves the red, white and blue You can learn a lot from Lydia
(la la la la la la) ……..
END OF PLAY