Dr. Georgina Bailey
Clarence (an angel)
Jethro (a graduate student)
ZuZu (another graduate student)
Faculty member #1
Faculty member #2
Chairman of the Department
Willie the bartender
Angel #1/Child #1
Angel #2/Child #2
The set consists of four main areas:
The lab: a small table, upstage, center
The faculty meeting room: A set of chairs downstage right.
The bar: stage left
The street in front of the bar: center stage.
SCENE 1: WHEREIN GEORGINA BEMOANS THE SITUATION IN HER LAB.
GEORGINA: (enters her lab, there is no one there) Hello? Hello? Is there anybody here? Well, isn’t this a wonderful lab? Where is everybody? (shouting) Hello? Hello? (she walks around) Look at this, a bunsen burner just left on, spewing gas without a flame! (She turns off the bunsen burner) And the pH probe just hanging in the air, drying out! (She puts away the pH probe). Hello? If you’re not going to be here could you all at least turn off the bunsen burner and put away the pH probe?
(Jethro and ZuZu enter. They are Georgina’s graduate students. Jethro is a good ole boy, wears his hat backwards, talks about football most of the time, etc. ZuZu is a child of the cosmos)
JETHRO AND ZUZU: Oh, hi Dr. Bailey!
GEORGINA: Hello Jethro. Hello ZuZu. I’m glad you could make it into lab today.
JETHRO: Oh we were here earlier, we just came back from lunch.
GEORGINA: I know you were here earlier. I found the bunsen burner on and the pH probe drying out.
JETHRO: Oh, sorry about that.
ZUZU: We had the most incredible lunch! Tofurkey: a giant ball of tofu shaped like a turkey and then deep fried golden brown. Oh, it was cosmic-o-licious. Yummy, yum, yum.
JETHRO: (Rolling his eyes) I went to the place next door and had a double cheeseburger.
GEORGINA Did either of you, by any chance, just happen to do the experiments we discussed yesterday?
JETHRO: Oh, yeah, I was going to do it, but the LSU/Duke basketball game was on at an earlier than usual time last night (pause) , oh, and then I got kinda drunk after that.
ZUZU: I did my experiment, or, well, I did most of it!
GEORGINA: Most of it?
ZUZU: You see, I just don’t think it’s right to feed these drugs and chemicals to the mice like this. I mean, who put us in charge? Who made us God over the mice?
JETHRO: (exaggeratedly mocking her): Oooh, who made us God over the mice? (He stomps his foot loudly on the floor) My big black boots make me God of all the mice! Just let ‘em try their ratsy little tricks on me! (He stomps the floor again and laughs).
JETHRO: Yes, Dr. Bailey?
(She just stares at him, with her hands on her hips)
JETHRO: (He looks around a bit as he slowly figures out what he should be doing) I, um, I think I should go start my experiment now, shouldn’t I?
GEORGINA: That’s a smart boy! It’s almost impossible to tell that you’re only in your 7th year of graduate school.
GEORGINA: Now, ZuZu, just how far did you get with your experiment?
ZUZU: Well, Dr. Bailey, you know how were supposed to make the mice take all these new drugs we’ve made to cure their diabetes?
GEORGINA: (Wary of where this is leading) Uh, huh….
ZUZU: Well, I’ve decided that it’s immoral to force them to take these drugs, so I just offer them the drugs in a separate food dish and let them choose whether to take the drugs or not. (She holds out a small food dish with some food pellets in them). See, I made the drugs look just like regular food pellets.
GEORGINA: Give me those. (She grabs the pellets from ZuZu and stuffs them in her pocket. She starts to speak a couple of times, each time stopping herself, shaking her head and re-thinking what she is going to say) Well, ZuZu, let’s, just for a moment put aside the 20 or 30 major objections and problems I see with this approach, and let me just ask you this: Did the mice eat the drugs?
ZUZU: I think some of them did.
GEORGINA: You think some of them did? And what makes you think that?
ZUZU: Because a bunch of them died.
GEORGINA: I see.
ZUZU: I mean it really upsets me that every drug we’ve tried kills all the mice. It hurts my inner mouse.
GEORGINA: It upsets me too ZuZu, but I still try to do the experiments correctly. (She looks at her watch) Oh, I’ve got to go to a faculty meeting right now, you can go back to work.
ZUZU: (Cheerfully, as she leaves) Okay, have a cosmo-labulous faculty meeting!
SCENE 2: WHEREIN GEORGINA GOES TO THE FACULTY MEETING.
(Georgina trudges (head down, shoulders slumped) over to the faculty meeting. The faculty are sitting in chairs facing forward. The chairman is facing the faculty.)
FACULTY MEMBER #1: Hi Georgina, you’re just in time for the voting.
CHAIR: All in favor of lowering student stipends?
(Everyone but Georgina raises their hands)
CHAIR: All opposed?
(Georgina raises her hand)
CHAIR: Okay, that’s 44 in favor, one opposed. Lowering of graduate student stipends is approved. Next item: All in favor of increased teaching loads?
(Everyone but Georgina raises her hand)
CHAIR: All opposed?
(Georgina raises her hand)
CHAIR: Okay, that’s 44 in favor, one opposed. Increasing of teaching loads is approved. I have to pee, I’ll be back in a moment. Feel free to talk amongst yourselves. (He leaves)
GEORGINA: (To the faculty near her) Are you guys nuts? Why are you voting for these ridiculous things? Why are they even on the agenda?
FACULTY MEMBER #2: Georgina, you’re always so contrary.
FACULTY MEMBER #1: Yes, Georgina, you always have to have a different opinion, don’t you?
GEORGINA: I’m the only one here that’s sane! Thank God some of our faculty decisions have to be unanimous, or you guys would be in big trouble.
FACULTY MEMBER #2: Oh I don’t know about that. I thought the suggestion of renting out the biology building to a Hari Krishna commune was a good idea.
FACULTY MEMBER #1: Yes, I was surprised you voted against it Georgina! But, as you say, that vote had to be unanimous to pass.
FACULTY MEMBER #2: Oh, and remember the time your vote prevented us from putting electric shock collars on the graduate students?
FACULTY MEMBER #1: I think that was a mistake, you should have voted for that one Georgina.
FACULTY MEMBER #2: Or remember the time your vote prevented us from being able to treat radioactive substances just like other chemicals?
FACULTY MEMBER #1: Yeah, that was just mean-hearted. It’s a real pain in the butt to have to keep track of all our radioactive materials. I personally wanted to use it as a punitive training tool. If students didn’t do what I told them to do, I was going to make them eat radioactive chemicals. But, nooooo, you prevented me from doing that didn’t you? Do I interfere with your training techniques?
(The Chair re-enters)
CHAIR: Okay, I’m back, and I’m feeling really refreshed and ready to go. (He looks at the agenda) And I see by the agenda that we’ve covered everything, so, meeting adjourned.
(Everyone gets up and leaves except Georgina, she sits for a moment, puts her hand to her forehead, sighs, etc.)
GEORGINA: I don’t know….Some days I wish I’d never been born. I’ve been here in this same wacko place for what seems like all my life, dealing with these same ridiculous problems, over and over again. I’ve wasted my life in this place, basically, accomplishing nothing. I need a drink.
SCENE 3. WHEREIN GEORGINA GETS A DRINK AT HER FAVORITE BAR: “SLICK WILLIE’S”
WILLIE (the bartender): Hey, Georgina! How’s it hanging kiddo?
GEORGINA: Hey Willie, (sadly) Merry Christmas.
WILLIE: Well that’s not a very happy Merry Christmas, what’s wrong?
GEORGINA: Nothing Willie, nothing’s wrong, nothing’s changed, everything’s the same, year in, year out, the same old thing, over and over again…
WILLIE: So, what’ll you have, the usual?
GEORGINA: Sure, Willie, sure, the usual, rum and milk.
WILLIE: Rum and milk coming right up! You know, I don’t even remember when you started drinking this, but everybody asks for it now.
GEORGINA: Really? I started drinking it because I have an ulcer.
WILLIE: Well it’s my most popular drink now.
GEORGINA: I guess lots of people have ulcers, eh Willie?
WILLIE: I don’t know about that Georgina, I think they might just like the way it tastes. Well, here’s your rum and milk.
GEORGINA: Thanks Willie.
WILLIE: How’s the research going?
GEORGINA: Eh, the same.
WILLIE: You’re working on them drugs to stop diabetes aren’t you?
GEORGINA: That’s right Willie, we are. Except the one’s were working on now seem like they’d make better rat poisons.
WILLIE: Gee, that’s too bad. I was just reading about some of them drugs. (He looks around for his newspaper) Now, where was that story? (He looks through the paper and finds the story) Do you know somebody named Dr. Peglegman?
GEORGINA: (She suddenly becomes very interested) He’s one of my main competitors, Willie, why?
WILLIE: Says here he invented one of them drugs to treat that diabetes.
GEORGINA: (She grabs the paper) Oh no! (she reads) Oh no! This is just slight variant of the chemical we published two months ago in the Journal of Diabetic Research. He just changed one methyl group and got it to work! Oh no, Willie, oh no! (she is very upset, she drops the paper, she puts her head in her hands and moans) Oh, Willie, oh no…no…
WILLIE: (Genuinely concerned) I’m sorry Georgina. (He pours some more milk into her glass) Here, I’ll make it a double, on the house.
SCENE 4: WHEREIN THERE IS A DISCUSSION IN HEAVEN.
(Georgina and Willie remain frozen at the bar during this entire scene).
ANGEL #1: Well, Clarence, I think she’s the one.
ANGEL #2: Yes, I agree, she’s the one.
CLARENCE: She looks like a tough assignment.
ANGEL #1: They all are, Clarence, if they weren’t difficult cases, they wouldn’t need our help would they?
ANGEL #2: Yes, I agree.
CLARENCE: But, she’s not in any real danger. She’s just…well…not happy. I thought I had to save someone’s life to get my wings.
ANGEL #1: You do Clarence. In about one minute, she’s going to walk out the door of that drinking establishment, and she’s going to throw herself in front of a car.
CLARENCE: Oh no!
ANGEL #2: Oh yes!
ANGEL #1: And that’s where you can start your work.
CLARENCE: Start my work? What do you mean “start my work”? I just save her, right?
ANGEL #1: (to Angel 2) Oh my, he does have a lot to learn, doesn’t he?
ANGEL #2: (to Angel 1) Yes, I agree.
ANGEL #1: Clarence, it’s time for you to go now….
ANGEL #2: Yes, I agree…
(Angels 1 and 2 rise and leave, Clarence gets up and faces where Georgina is sitting).
SCENE 5. WHEREIN CLARENCE MEETS GEORGINA.
WILLIE: (pushing the drink toward Georgina) Really, here you go Georgina, on the house…
GEORGINA: (Looks at the drink, looks at Willie, shakes her head) No Willie, no, keep it. It’s a waste of good rum and milk to give it to me. I’ve got to go do something. I’ve got to go do something I should have done a long time ago, Willie. A long time ago…(she gets up and heads for the door, she is starting to sob, she turns to Willie just before she leaves) Say goodbye, Willie, okay? Say goodbye for me…
WILLIE: What do you mean Georgina?
GEORGINA: Goodbye Willie. (She leaves)
(Georgina goes out to the street, she looks both ways)
GEORGINA: Not a lot of traffic tonight. Christmas eve I guess…here comes a suitable SUV now. I guess it’s your lucky day buddy….
(A car (a person carrying a cardboard cutout of the front of a car) is coming down the road. Georgina starts leaning out into the road. Clarence sees what is going to happen and fidgets a bit, says “Oh, no” and then moves. He rushes across the street in front of the car just as Georgina is starting to throw herself in front of it. He crashes into Georgina and they both tumble out of the way of the car. It drives past.)
DRIVER OF CAR: Hey watch out you jerks, you almost scratched my new Ford Expedition!
GEORGINA: What the…Hey you clumsy goon.
CLARENCE: I’m sorry (he starts to brush off Georgina)
GEORGINA: Can’t you see where you’re going, you…you…where did you come from, anyway…
CLARENCE: I can see perfectly well where I’m going, thank you. And my name is Clarence.
GEORGINA: Clarence, huh? Clarence what? Clarence the-blind-man-who-knocks-people-down?
CLARENCE: Just Clarence will do, thank you.
GEORGINA: Well, just-Clarence, if you can see so well, why’d you knock into me?
CLARENCE: I knocked you over to keep you from jumping in front of that car.
GEORGINA: (Surprised) How did you know– (pause, suspiciously) What makes you think I was going to jump in front of that car?
CLARENCE: I know you were, and you know you were, let’s just leave at that for now.
GEORGINA: Oh yeah, so you’re not Just Clarence at all, eh, you think you’re Clarence the Clairvoyant, eh?
CLARENCE: I came down from Heaven to save your life, Georgina.
GEORGINA: WHAT? Oh no, like my day hasn’t been bad enough already, now I get saved by a nut case. Do you want me to help you find your way back to the mental hospital Clarence?
CLARENCE: I did save your life just now, Georgina, and you know it. Now how would I know that if I wasn’t an angel from Heaven? And you’re very much alive now.
GEORGINA: Oh yeah, well not for long Just Clarence. I made a decision a little while ago that I should have made a long time ago, and no hallucination of an angel, or whatever you think you are, is going to stop me. I’ve been a worthless invisible zombie in this town for far too long. I never should have been born. My life is a waste of everybody’s time. It’s about time I did something about it.
CLARENCE: (Speaking up to the sky) Oh dear, now I see what you mean about my work just beginning.
GEORGINA: Who you talking to there Just-Clarence? God?
CLARENCE: No, just some angel friends of mine.
GEORGINA: Oh wonderful. Well, why don’t you run along and play with your angel friends. I have something I need to do. And here comes another SUV, so you run along now Just Clarence.
CLARENCE: (Comes up with a plan) Georgina, what would it take, short of me knocking you down several times a day for the rest of your life, to prevent you from killing yourself?
GEORGINA: I’ve made up my mind, Clarence, I thought you would know that, being and angel and clairvoyant and all. I’ve made up my mind. I wish I had never been born, and so I’m going to do the next best thing.
CLARENCE: (Waves his arms around a bit) Ta da! Consider your wish granted!
GEORGINA: (glares at him) You mean you’re going to stay out of my way when this SUV gets up here?
CLARENCE: No, I mean you’ve never been born.
GEORGINA: You really are an escaped mental patient aren’t you Clarence? Now look out, here comes my ticket out of this place. Hey, its my lucky day, it’s the same jerk in the Ford Expedition.
(The car approaches, Georgina steps out in front of it. It drives right past her, obviously hitting her(she spins around as it passes), but the driver does not react and Georgina does not suffer any consequence of the car hitting her. The car drives past and leaves her and Clarence staring after it).
GEORGINA: Well, that was strange. That car drove right through me. Without so much as messing up my hair.
CLARENCE: You’ve never been born, Georgina. You don’t exist. That car didn’t hit you because you’re not there to be hit.
GEORGINA: (putting her arm around Clarence) Listen Just-Clarence. I don’t know what happened just now. I’ve got to think about this. I’m gonna go back inside Willie’s bar here and have a drink, let me buy ya a drink Just-Clarence.
SCENE 6. WHEREIN CLARENCE AND GEORGINA HAVE A DRINK IN WILLIE’S BAR.
(They enter and go up to the bar)
GEORGINA: Hey Willie, I’m back!
WILLIE: And who exactly are you?
GEORGINA: It’s me, Georgina.
WILLIE: Is that supposed to mean something to me? You gonna order a drink or not? This is a place of business.
GEORGINA: Willie, don’t you know me?
WILLIE: Listen buddy, I’m not your friend, and I don’t want to be your friend. I serve drinks. If I don’t serve enough drinks I can’t pay the rent here. I serve drinks to anyone that walks through that door. I don’t care how old they are, I don’t care how many drinks they’ve already had, I don’t care if they’re carrying a gun and driving a bus. Why, I’d serve alcohol to a baby. I’d serve alcohol to an underage dog.
GEORGINA: That’s not the Willie I know, what’s gotten into to you Willie?
WILLIE: (waving him off) Ach! Forget you. Here come some paying customers.
(Two small children enter the bar)
WILLIE: Hi boys, what’ll be today!
CHILD #1: A shot of whiskey please.
CHILD #2: Make mine a double whiskey.
WILLIE: Coming right up, lads.
GEORGINA: Hey, hey wait a minute here, these are children, why that little one there can’t be more than 5 years old!
WILLIE: Hey buddy, I don’t know who you are, but I think you should leave now, before I bust you one upside the head.
(Clarence gently guides Georgina out of the bar)
GEORGINA: I don’t understand. It’s Willie, what’s he doing? Why doesn’t he know me?
CLARENCE: You’ve never been born Georgina. Willie’s bar was always operating on the edge of bankruptcy. He never had a gimmick. Till you invented the “rum and milk”, that is. Soon everybody wanted one. But now, since you were never born, Willie never got his new drink, he started going bankrupt, he panicked, he started selling alcohol to minors and stray animals, very soon he’s going to be shut down. And all because you were never born…
GEORGINA: Will you cut it out with this “never been born” stuff, you’re starting to creep me out Clarence. Let’s just go.
(They walk a few feet and find a newspaper. Clarence picks it up and hands it to Georgina.)
GEORGINA: What’s this? (she looks at it briefly) Oh, this is just today’s paper. Willie showed me it earlier. There’s an article in here that…hey…that article’s gone…
CLARENCE: Take a look at the article that replaced it.
GEORGINA: “Diabetes poised to become the nation’s top killer disease” – How is that possible? Pegleglman developed a treatment – (to Clarence, accusingly) now that had nothing to do with me.
CLARENCE: Didn’t it Georgina? I know the angel that watches over Peglegman. Peglegman couldn’t design a drug if you held a gun to his head. He used your drug designs as inspiration. But you were never born, so Peglegman never designed a drug that can treat diabetes, and lots of people are going to die because of that.
GEORGINA: This is making my head hurt, Clarence, it really does seem like I’ve never been born. I gotta think this though, in the meantime, lets go up to my laboratory and we’ll phone up the police and find out what mental hospital you escaped from, and I’ll take you back there.
SCENE 7. GEORGINA AND CLARENCE GO BACK TO THE DEPARTMENT.
(Georgina and Clarence enter the building and Georgina notices several faculty members slumped in chairs in the room where the faculty meeting was held. The chairman is laying on the floor where he had been standing in the earlier scene. The faculty are motionless.)
GEORGINA: What in the world? Why are there people in the meeting room? It’s Christmas Eve, what are they doing here? (She goes into the room and looks at them, she pushes one over, he falls on the floor. She screams and runs from one to another. ) They’re dead. They’re all dead. Aeiiii! What’s happened here? (She turns to Clarence, points and yells at him) Don’t you even think about saying anything about my never having been born! Oh, no! What about my lab!?
(She runs out, Clarence follows her to the lab. When she gets there Jethro and ZuZu are dead. One is lying on the lab bench the other on the floor.)
GEORGINA: Oh no! They’re dead too! How could this happen? What’s going on? Oh no,no,no,no….(she starts to sob)
CLARENCE: (comes over to comfort her) Georgina? Do you remember when you found the bunsen burner was left on this morning?
GEORGINA: (Still sobbing) Huh?
CLARENCE: Well you weren’t here to turn it off this time. Because you were never born, Georgina. And so gas filled the entire building and killed everyone in it.
GEORGINA: Oh Clarence, this is so horrible. I’m sorry Clarence, I didn’t know my life had such meaning. I didn’t know the little things I did could have so much impact Clarence. I’ve made a mistake Clarence. I want to live. Take me back, Clarence, take me back to my life. I want to live. (She puts her head down and sobs.)
CLARENCE: (He waves his arms over her) Ta da! (To himself: ) Looks like I’m going to get mee wings. (Georgina continues crying. Clarence leaves)
(Suddenly, Jethro and ZuZu wake up, as do the faculty in the faculty meeting room. The faculty stretch and leave the stage. Jethro and ZuZu stretch a bit, and see Georgina crying with her head in her hands.)
ZUZU: Dr. Bailey? Are you okay?
GEORGINA: (looking up, she then jumps up) ZuZu, Jethro, you’re alive! Oh thank God, you’re alive!
JETHRO: Of course we’re alive. Tofurkey isn’t poisonous, it just tastes like drywall.
GEORGINA: Oh, I’m so happy to see you both!
ZUZU: Well that’s cosmorifically wonderful Dr. Bailey. But, I do have a confession to make.
GEORGINA: A confession? What do you mean ZuZu?
ZUZU: Well, I lost those drug pellets I made, and I know we don’t have a lot of those drugs.
GEORGINA: Oh! Oh! (She digs in her pocket and pulls out the pellets) Here they are! (She shows them to Jethro) ZuZu’s pellets! I’ve got ZuZu’s pellets! Oh thank God in Heaven!
JETHRO: Maybe you should cut down a little on the caffeine Dr. Bailey. Just a suggestion.
GEORGINA: And it’s a wonderful suggestion Jethro. I’m so glad you’re coming up with clever suggestions on your own now.
ZUZU: You know Dr. Bailey, they say that everytime someone comes up with an original idea in science, an angel gets their wings.
GEORGINA: That’s right ZuZu! That’s right! (She speaks to the sky) Way to go, Clarence! Way to go!