ACT ONE. (It is 9 p.m. in a living room that would look like a toy store if toy stores had no shelves and the merchandise didn't come in boxes. Visible in the clutter are a large, bearded man and a small, unbearded boy. The man looks at his watch and mutters, "Thank you, God, thank you, thank you, thank you." He speaks.)

MAN: Time to pick up your toys and go to bed, sweetheart.
BOY: No! I don't want to! I'm not tired!
MAN: Pick up your toys!
BOY: Daddy, feel my head. I'm sick.
MAN: You're not sick.
BOY: I think I'm gonna throw up.
MAN: Then throw up while you're putting your toys away.
BOY: I can't put my toys away! There's too many!

MAN: I'll tell you what. You can pick them up right now, or you can get a spanking and then pick them up. What'll it be?

(The boy throws up. Fade out.)

ACT TWO. (9:20 p.m. The boy's bedroom. The man is putting away the last of the toys.)

MAN: Feeling better?
BOY: No. Daddy, will you read me a book?
MAN: Not tonight. It's late.
BOY: Just one book? Please? A small book?
MAN: All right. Which book do you want?

BOY: How about . . . ummm . . . let's see. I know! How about . . . uhhh . . . how about . . . read me a story about . . . I've got a good idea! Why don't you read me a story about . . . ummmm . . . MAN: Make up your mind right now, or you won't get a story.

BOY: My new Star Wars book.
MAN (searching for book): Where is it?
BOY: At Grandma's.
MAN (grabbing the first book he sees): I'm reading The Pokey Little Puppy.

BOY: No! No monsters in there! How about . . . um . . . a story about a bi-i-i-i-ig brontosaurus who comes to my house and plays with me. And E.T., too. And Chewbacca.

MAN: You don't have any books like that. It's either The Pokey Little Puppy or no book at all. (Fade out.)

ACT THREE. (9:30 p.m.)
MAN: . . . and after supper, you and the brontosaurus and E.T. and Chewbacca all went to bed.

BOY: What'd we eat for supper?
MAN: Hot dogs.
BOY: Daddy, brontosauruses don't eat hot dogs. They're leaf-eaters.

MAN: Okay, you ate leaves for supper. And then you all went to bed and lived . . . BOY: Happily ever after!

MAN: Right. Now the light is going off. Sweet dreams.
BOY: Dad?
MAN: What?
BOY: You didn't brush my teeth.
(Fade out.)

ACT FOUR. (9:37 p.m.)
BOY: I gotta pee.
(Fade out.)

ACT FIVE. (9:41 p.m.)
BOY: I think my leg is broken.
MAN: In that case, you'll have to go to the doctor and stay in bed for a very long time.

BOY: It's better now. (Fade out.)

ACT SIX. (9:47 p.m.)
BOY: I'm thirsty.
(Fade out.)

ACT SEVEN. (9:51 p.m. The living room. The boy enters.)
BOY: I heard a noise outside.
MAN: Of course you heard a noise outside. There are people and cars and all sorts of things that make noise outside.

BOY: Maybe it's a monster.
MAN: We don't allow monsters in this neighborhood.
BOY: What about nice monsters?

MAN: Nope. No monsters at all. NOW GO TO BED AND STAY THERE. (The boy exits. Fade out.)

ACT EIGHT. (9:53 p.m. The boy enters.)
BOY: Maybe it's bugs and spiders.
MAN: Bugs and spiders are quiet.
BOY: Maybe it's big bugs and spiders. Giant bugs and spiders.

MAN: Son, all the giant bugs and spiders in the world are asleep. GOODNIGHT!!!

BOY: All right! (The boy exits. Fade out.)

ACT NINE. (9:55 p.m. The boy enters.)
BOY: Maybe it's Freddy Krueger.
MAN: Where did you hear about Freddy Krueger?!?
BOY: Nicky told me.
MAN: Honey, Freddy Krueger isn't real. He's just pretend.
BOY: Not when you're sleeping.
(Fade out.)

ACT TEN. (9:58 p.m. The boy calls from off-stage.)
BOY: Daddy! (Pause.) Daddy? (Pause.) DAAAAAAA-DEEEEEEE!
(The boy enters.)

BOY: Daddy, I have to ask you something. Something important. Very important.

MAN: What is it now?!
BOY: Dad . . . Dad . . . Dad . . . do you like vegetables?
(Fade out.)

ACTS ELEVEN through TWENTY-FOUR. (Repeat Acts Four through Ten twice.)

ACT TWENTY-FIVE. (11:38 p.m. The living room. The big, bearded man and the small, unbearded boy are watching The Love Connection. Mommy enters.)

MOMMY (to boy): What are you doing up at this hour, young man?
BOY: Daddy made me.
(Fade out. Curtain. Scream.)

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Michael Burkett

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