Friday, August 26, 2016

Shootout at Garsen's Saloon
Part Two, Conclusion of Scene Three
Cast of Characters in This Scene
            Joe Garrett, leader of the homesteaders
            Marian Garrett, Joe’s wife            
            Johnny Garrett, dim-witted 16 year old son
            Bonnie Garrett, 12 year old daughter
            Big Bill Wretcher, cattle boss of the valley
            Kurt Jergens, Big Bill’s German, bully-boy foreman
            Shane, gunfighter trying to escape his past
            Stark Verisimilitude, gunfighter
Time: 1880s
Place: Shoshone Hole, Wyoming

(Joe Garrett enters left,)
Joe: Johnny, what do you think you’re dong?!
Johnny: I’m growing up, Pa!  Growing up fast!
Joe: So I see!  I didn’t kiss your mother until we were married!
Johnny: You’re such a goodie goodie, Pa!
Joe: It’s time you had another licking behind the wood shed!
Johnny: Oh, Pa!
Joe (grabbing Johnny by the back of the neck): When I’m done with you, you aren’t  going to sit down for a week!  (He starts directing him toward the right exit.)
Girl Who Is Left: Poor me!  (She exits dejectedly left.)
(The scene shifts to behind the wood shed)
(Shane enters right, puts a foot up on a log, and looks wistfully over the heads of the audience.)
(Bonnie Garrett enters left.)
Bonnie (shyly): Hello, Shane.
Shane: Hello, Bonnie.
Bonnie (after a pause): I was watching you just now.  You looked real serious.
Shane: A man has to be alone sometimes … to sort things out.
Bonnie (looking away from him and then at the ground): I … like you, Shane.
Shane (a fatherly smile): And I like you too, Bonnie.
Bonnie (looking him straight in the eye): Would you play Spin the Bottle with me?!
Shane: Whoa there!  Who … who put that idea in your head?!
Bonnie: I like you, Shane.  Isn’t that what a man and woman do when they like each other?  Kiss?
Shane: Who told you that, little lady?
Bonnie: Mom.  And she said she wondered when was the last time somebody kissed you.
Shane (somewhat embarrassed): Well, that was … awhile back.
Bonnie: I think she likes you, Shane.  You’d better watch out!
Shane (after a pause): Your mother’s a fine woman, Bonnie.
Bonnie: You like her, don’t you?
Shane: Uh, well … do you see that hawk up there?  (He motions over the audience.)
Bonnie: Changing the subject, aren’t you?
Shane: A hawk can’t stay in one place.  Just like me.  I thought I had changed, could settle down, being here.  Now maybe it’s time I was moving on!
(Marian Garrett enters left.)
Marian: Shane!  There you are!  I was … (sees Bonnie) … Oh!  Bonnie girl!  (She looks flustered.)    Go see your father.  Heaven knows wherever he may be!
(Bonnie looks from Marian to Shane and back to Marian)
Marian (forcefully): What are you waiting for?!  Go see your father!
(Smiling, Bonnie exits left.)
Shane (after a pause): Hello, Marian.
Marian (shyly): I feel like a school girl.
Shane: You’re a warm-hearted woman, Marian.  Joe is a lucky man.
Marian: Oh, Shane!  (emotionally)  Shane!  Shane!  Shane!  (Five seconds pass as she gazes fondly into his eyes.)  That first time we met and you held my hand, … even though you burped on it, … I knew you were someone special!
Shane: If it weren’t for you, Marian, I’d be bending over some horse trough right now emptying my stomach!
Marian: No, that’s not true.  It was your past that drove you to drink!
Shane: Yes.  I’ll never strap on a gun again!
Marian (fondly): Or empty another bottle.  And the fact that I am an irresistible woman who hasn’t had a man’s arms around her in two years had nothing to do with it.  (She puts her hands impulsively on his shoulders.)
(Joe Garrett, still holding Johnny by the back on the neck, enters right.)
Joe (stopping short): Marian!
Marian (jerking her hands away): Joe!
Johnny: Ma!
Marian: Shut up, Ferret Face!
Joe (after a pause): Johnny!  Go … hide in the barn!  I don’t want you to see this!
Johnny: Right away, Pa!  Seventeen is much too impressionable an age!  (He exits hastily right, and then sticks his head back in as Joe and Shane try to stare each other down.)  Now to find Hannah and Rachel!  (His head disappears)
Joe (after a pause): I never told you how much your being here has helped me, Shane.  But I reckon now’s the time you’d better leave!
Marian: Joe!  No!
Shane: A man’s got to pay his debts.
Joe: And letting you kiss Marian is the way I pay mine?!
Marian (bright-eyed): It’s okay with me if it’s okay with him!
Shane: I meant you gave me a warm meal and straw to sleep on when I needed it most.  That’s why I stayed on!
Marian: Then you aren’t leaving?!
Shane: Marian, I reckon a man can’t escape his past!
Marian: Shane, no!  (He starts for the left exit.)  Where are you going?
Shane: To get my gun … a bottle of booze, … and  (John Wayne swagger) shove off!  (He exits left)
Marian: Joe!  Stop him!
Joe (looking off at right entrance): Can’t!
Marian: Can’t?!  Won’t!  Because you aren’t half the man he is!  If you were, you’d put a bullet through Big Bill Wretcher right now!
Joe: Looks like I’ll get the chance.
(Big Bill, Jergens, and Stark enter right on “horses” (saw-horses).  Joe and Marian back off toward the left exit.  The men dismount)
Marian: Joe, who is that ugly one?
Stark (overhearing): Ugly?  You don’t mean me, do you?!
Joe: From his looks, I’d say he’s a hired gun.  A good one!
Stark: The best!
Marian: Joe, get Shane!
Stark: Uh … hold it!  That won’t be necessary.
Joe: It’s … too late.  He left.
Stark: Good.  (boastfully)  I would have had to pistol whip him.
(Shane reappears at the left.)
Stark (seeing Shane): Oh boy!
Jergens: Garrett!  You vill listen vun last time!
Big Bill: I’m giving you ‘til sundown to pack up and leave, Garrett!
Joe: Mighty considerate of you, Wretcher!
(Shane circles around behind them and takes a position facing Stark, who has turned to face him)
Big Bill: If you stay, we burn you out!
Joe: I’m not leaving!  (pause)  And you aren’t burning me out!
Jergens: Of course, if you don’t like der choice, you can do something else.
Joe: What’s that?
Jergens (motioning to Big Bill): Ask him.
Big Bill: We’ll be at Garsen’s ‘til seven.  Stark here feels guilty drawing pay.  And the undertaker wants business!
Shane: So you’re Stark Verisimilitude.  I’ve heard about you!
Stark: Whatever you’ve heard you can double!
Shane: I’ve heard you’re a dry-gulching back stabber!  And when you draw, you go, “Blleeeeww!”
Stark: What’s wrong with that?!  It catches ‘em off guard!
Shane: Ride out of here now, Verisimilitude!  The fight’s between Garrett and Wretcher!
Stark: Blleeeeww!
Big Bill: Garrett, what’s it going to be?!
Joe (after a dramatic pause): I’ll be in to see you … at seven!
(Big Bill mounts his saw horse. Jergens and Stark mount theirs.  Silently, they ride off and out the right exit.)
Marian: Joe, if you go into town to face them, you’ll get killed!
(Bonnie and Hannah enter right, unseen by the others, and listen)
Joe: Marian, I’m not going into the saloon with my hands over my head saying, “Shoot me!”  But if they do. … (long look at Shane) … I know you’ll be well cared for!
Shane: You’d better believe it!
(Marian smiles.)
Joe: And if I do come back, …
Shane: We’ve got a problem!
Marian: You’d better believe it!
Joe: Of course, …  I could use some help!  (He looks at Shane)
Marian: Joe, that’s not fair!  Shane will start hitting the sauce again, and what if both of you are killed?!  Where does that leave me?!  That’s really, really not fair!
Joe: All right then.  If I have to make this valley safe for homesteaders all by myself, I’ll do it!
Marian: You’re so noble!
Joe: I’m just going to ask one thing.  (pause) Give me one minute alone with Old Ironwood here.
Marian: That stupid stump again!
Shane: Let it go, Marian.  (He and Marian exit left)
Bonnie (to Hannah): I’m going to tell everybody!  Shoot Out at Garsen’s Saloon!  Wowie!
Hannah: And I’ll tell Father!  Maybe he can stop it!
(Bonnie and Hannah exit right.)
Joe (putting a foot on the stump, smiling down at it): You and me have had some good times together, haven’t we, stump?  Well, it’s all … (breaking down) … just … about over!  (recovering somewhat)  I won’t be coming back!    So, I want you to know … you’re free!  (He looks forlornly at the stump, then straightens, and exits resolutely right)   
(Shane enters left, carrying his gun belt._
Shane: Heart-rendering!  Poignant!  (He puts on his gun belt and straightens his hat.)  I can’t let him do it!  (He practices his fast draw, holsters his gun, and exits decisively right)

Friday, August 19, 2016

Shootout at Garsen's Saloon
Part Two
Cast of Characters
            Joe Garrett, leader of the homesteaders
            Marian Garrett, Joe’s wife
            Grandma Garrett, Joe’s mother
            Johnny Garrett, dim-witted 16 year old son
            Bonnie Garrett, 12 year old daughter
            Cannonball Stone, fiery-tempered homesteader
            Opal Stone, 16 year old daughter
            Rocky Stone, 14 year old son
            Svede Svenson, Swedish homesteader
            Ebenezer Erp, town preacher
            Alley Erp, Ebenezer’s wife
            Hannah Erp, bad-breathed 16 year old daughter
            Big Bill Wretcher, cattle boss of the valley
            Rachael Wretcher, flirtatious 16 year old daughter
            Kurt Jergens, Big Bill’s German, bully-boy foreman
            Garsen, owner of Garsen’s Saloon
            Tina Tintinnabulation, saloon girl
            Digger Phelps, undertaker and barber
            Widow Winslow, man-hunting, 35 year old widow
            Shane, gunfighter trying to escape his past
            Stark Verisimilitude, gunfighter
Time: 1880s
Place: Shoshone Hole, Wyoming
Scene Two
(In the den of Reverend Ebenezer Erp.  Rev. Erp is seated behind a desk reading a sermon he has just written)
Erp: “And so I say unto you.  Beware the intrusion of evil into your life.  It will come stealthily, like a coyote in a chicken-coop, to seize the goodness of you, and carry it off into the night!”  (to himself)  I write so beautifully!  “We must smit the intruder!  Drive a wooden stake through its …”  Smit?  Smote?  Smitted?  Alley, come here!
Mrs. Erp (entering left): What is it this time?  Can’t you write one sermon without my help?!
Erp: Alley, my sermons are always His message!  My vocabulary, alas, is not!
Mrs. Erp: What is it this time?  I’m working on Hannah’s dress!
Erp: Listen.  “We must smit the intruder.”
Mrs. Erp: That’s smote.
Erp: Thank you, my dear.  Do you see how easy that was?  (He goes back to studying his sermon)
Mrs. Erp (after a pause): But why not just say, “kill the intruder”?
Erp (looking up): What?
Mrs. Erp: Kill!  Kill!
Erp: Alley, my dear.  You must not let your inability to hem a dress control your emotions.
Mrs. Erp: I’m not talking about that!
Erp: Then surely it is the choir.  It was most unfair of me to expect you to improve the singing of two eighty-year-old women, and a deaf mute baritone.  (He goes back to reading his sermon)
Mrs. Erp (with strained sweetness): Ebenezer, dear.  I was not thinking of killing anything or anyone, until right now.
Erp (looking up again): Good.  (pause)  It is time now for me to practice my delivery before your full length mirror.  Is Hannah decently attired?
Mrs. Erp: You may go in, Ebenezer.  Ask Hannah to join me here.  (Erp exits left)  At times he is such an airhead!
(Hannah enters excitedly left)
Hannah: Oh, Mother, I’m so excited!  Johnny’s birthday party and no more bad breath!  I’m going to win him, Mother!  I’m going to be his wife!  (She starts to jump up and down)
Mrs. Erp: Not without a good fight!
Hannah (having stopped jumping): You mean … Rachel Wretcher?
Mrs. Erp: Hannah, your father is a saintly man.  He must never know I said this.  (pause)  Just between you and me, when you’re alone with Johnny, … show him a little leg!
Hannah: Mother!  I am shocked!
Mrs. Erp: Don’t be.  How do you think I got your father?!
Hannah: Are you saying Father was attracted to the sight of your exposed leg?!
Mrs. Erp: He couldn’t keep from snapping my garter.
Hannah: Oh, how shameful!  And even worse is that you allowed it!
Mrs. Erp: Listen, honey.  When you’re twenty-nine and you’ve finally hooked a man – any man, which is the category your father fell into – you’ll do almost anything to land him!
Hannah: You mean … you didn’t get married at sixteen?!  (Mrs. Erp shakes her head)  Well, I’m not going to listen to such scandalous talk another minute!  I would never do any such thing with Johnny!
Mrs. Erp: But Rachel Wretcher would!
(Long pause as Hannah reflects on this)
(Rev. Erp enters left.  He walks over to Hannah)
Erp: Hannah, my dear.  What a lovely dress, even though the hem is uneven.  (He looks at Mrs. Erp)
(Mrs. Erp  frowns.)
Hannah: Shameful, Father!  You … you … you garter snapper!  (She rushes out the left exit.)
Erp (bewildered): What did I say?
Mrs. Erp: Pay her no mind.  Her head is filled with worry.
Erp (after a confused look): Would you check my delivery?  I believe I hold my fist too high when I invoke His wrath!
Mrs. Erp (a bit wearily): All right.  Into the other room.  (They exit right)
Scene Three
(The Garrett homestead.  In the yard.  Johnny Garrett enters left with Rachel Wretcher and Hannah Erp)
Johnny: I never knew my folks and you were gonna give me a surprise birthday party!  I’m so surprised!
Rachel: Now that we’ve eaten the ice cream and cake, Johnny, … (romantically) … let’s play games!
Hannah: Oh, let’s.  My father taught me a good one!
Johnny: What is it?
Hannah: I’ll name something someone did in Old Testament days.
Johnny: And we have to name who did it?
Hannah: Yes!
Johnny (after a reflective pause): Hannah, there is something definitely different about you today.
Hannah: I know.  You haven’t seen me in a week.  Something happened!
Rachel: You haven’t seen me in a week either!  And I know a game you’ll just love!
Johnny: Oh yeah?  (turning to Rachel)  What’s it called?
Rachel (smiling): Spin the bottle!
Johnny: Oh.  I like bottles.  I’ve got a great big collection.  Pretty red ones.  Shiny brown ones!  How do you play?
Rachel: Well, you find an old bottle …
Hannah: And you spin it?
Rachel (to Hannah, coldly): Let me tell it, Maggot Mouth!
Hannah (offended): Maggot mouth?!  That’s not nice!
Rachel: Sorry!  How about Bile Breath!  Do you have to get so close?!
Johnny (after a look of discovery, to Hannah): That’s it!  I know what’s different about you!
Hannah (pleased): You finally noticed.
Johnny: Your breath!  It no longer smells like month-old meat!
Hannah (demurely): It was a bad tooth, Johnny.  I had it pulled.
Rachel (sarcastically): Wonderful.  May I finish explaining the game?!
Johnny: Oh yes.  Go ahead.
Rachel: Everyone who is playing sits in a circle.
(Bonnie Garrett enters right.)
Bonnie: A game?  Eeew, can I play?!
Johnny: Yes.  Certainly.
Rachel (not pleased): Johnny, this game is a bit … mature for her.
Bonnie: You mean I’m too young?!  I’m playing!
Johnny: Now, Bonnie, if Rachel says this game is too mature for you, you should believe her.
Rachel: You wouldn’t like it.  (smiling at Johnny)  But Johnny would!
Bonnie: Yes, I would!  I’m not as little as you think!
Rachel (to Bonnie): All right.  I’ll prove it.  (pause)  Do you like to kiss boys?
Bonnie (making a face): Yuck!
Rachel (to Johnny): Do you like to kiss?  I bet you do!
Johnny (after a thoughtful pause): I can’t really say.  I’ve never kissed a boy.
Bonnie: Oh brother!
Johnny (turning to Bonnie): Yes?
Bonnie (shaking her head): Dense!
Rachel (smiling): But cuddly!
Johnny (again a look of discovery): Oh!  Were you talking about kissing … girls?!
Bonnie: I still want to know how to play!
Rachel (after a sigh): First we need a bottle.
Johnny: I’ll get one!  (He rushes off-stage left.)
Bonnie: What do I do with the bottle?
Rachel: You spin it.
Bonnie: What happens when it stops?
Rachel: You do something to the person it’s pointing at.
Bonnie: If it’s Johnny, do I get to kick him?!
Rachel: No, you have to kiss him!
Bonnie: Double yuck!  I’d rather kiss a potato bug!  I’m leaving!  (She gets up and exits right.)
(Johnny enters left with a bottle.)
Johnny: Well, that just leaves … you two and me.  (Rachel and Hannah both smile.)  What do we do with this?
Rachel: Spin it.
Johnny: Oh, how fun!
Hannah (tentatively): I don’t think my father would want me playing this game.
Rachel: Good!  Go away!
Hannah: On the other hand, … what does he know?!  I’ll go first!
Rachel: No, I will!
Hannah: No, you won’t!
Rachel: It was my idea!
Hannah (grabbing the bottle away from Johnny): But I’ve got the bottle!
Johnny: Hey, I thought I got to spin it!  (to Hannah)  I bet I can make it turn more times than you.
Hannah: That’s not the object of the game.
Johnny: It’s not?  Oh, shucks!
Hannah: You spin the bottle, and when it stops …
Johnny (seriously): Yes?
Hannah: Whoever it points to, … you kiss!
Johnny: Oh.  (pause)  And who all is playing?
Hannah: Just you, Rachel, and me!
Johnny: So if I spin it, … then … (big smile) … Oh!
Rachel: I’m going first!
Hannah: No!
Rachel: I’ll scratch your eyes out!
Hannah: You just try!
Johnny: Girls!  Girls!  (They stop glowering at each other and look at him.)  Just because I’m … seventeen now … and very good-looking, …  (He makes his ferret face)  that’s no reason to fight over me!
Hannah: Well …
Rachel: Then what do you suggest?
Johnny: Let me spin the bottle … once!  The girl who loses … can go play with my sister.
Rachel: All right, go spin it!  Once we start kissing, I’m not quitting!
(Johnny spins the bottle.  They watch it intently.  If it points at Hannah, the following scene takes place.)
Rachel (standing up angrily): Ferret Face!  (She stalks off left)
Johnny: Gee, everyone calls me ferret face!
Hannah (rising): Maybe we’d better stand up.  (She places her hands on his shoulders)
Johnny: You’re kind of tall.  You sure your breath is okay now?
Hannah: Positive.
Johnny: I wouldn’t want you having a relapse at the last minute!
Hannah: Well, it you’re worried, we’d … better get started right now!
Johnny: Okay.  (He raises up on his tip-toes.)
(Joe Garrett enters left.)
(If the bottle points at Rachel, the following scene takes place)
Hannah (rising and looking skyward): First the bad breath!  Now this!  Why can’t a minister’s daughter have any fun?!  (She exits forlornly left)
Rachel (grinning): Come here, Ferret Face!
Johnny: Everybody calls me ferret face!
Rachel: But I like your ferret face!  I’m going to kiss it and kiss it!
Johnny (standing): Well, once or twice maybe.
Rachel (placing hands on his shoulders): Or twenty.
Johnny (nervously): Oh boy.  (He shuts his eyes tightly.)
(Joe Garrett enters left,)
To be concluded next week

Thursday, August 11, 2016

I was surprised to discover that quite a few of you read Part One of my eighth grade parody of the movie and novel "Shane."  So, as a change of place before continuing my posts about the life of Frederick Douglass, I present Part Two, Scene One.  Scenes Two and Three will following in successive weeks.  In Scene One we meet the evil gunfighter Stark Verisimilitude, played so menacingly in the movie by Jack Palance.
Shootout at Garsen's Saloon
Part Two


Cast of Characters

            Joe Garrett, leader of the homesteaders

            Marian Garrett, Joe’s wife

            Grandma Garrett, Joe’s mother

            Johnny Garrett, dim-witted 16 year old son

            Bonnie Garrett, 12 year old daughter

            Cannonball Stone, fiery-tempered homesteader

            Opal Stone, 16 year old daughter

            Rocky Stone, 14 year old son

            Svede Svenson, Swedish homesteader

            Ebenezer Erp, town preacher

            Alley Erp, Ebenezer’s wife

            Hannah Erp, bad-breathed 16 year old daughter

            Big Bill Wretcher, cattle boss of the valley

            Rachael Wretcher, flirtatious 16 year old daughter

            Kurt Jergens, Big Bill’s German, bully-boy foreman

            Garsen, owner of Garsen’s Saloon

            Tina Tintinnabulation, saloon girl

            Digger Phelps, undertaker and barber

            Widow Winslow, man-hunting, 35 year old widow

             Shane, gunfighter trying to escape his past

            Stark Verisimilitude, gunfighter

Time: 1880s

Place: Shoshone Hole, Wyoming

Scene One

(Garsen’s Saloon.  Garsen is behind the bar sampling his own liquor.  Cannonball Stone enters right)

Cannonball (to right exit): Get on in here, Rocky!  I’m gonna make a man out a you if it kills me!

Rocky (loudly, off-stage): I’m … scared!

Cannonball: Of what?

Rocky: Saloons!  I might get hurt!

Cannonball (yanking Rocky on-stage): Get in here, you … dandelion!

Rocky: I want to go back to the poetry meeting!

Cannonball: You’re not getting’ out a here ‘til you’ve downed a bottle of Red-Eye and danced with Tina.

Rocky: I don’t know how to dance, and I’m not going to ---

Cannonball (interrupting): You’ll do exactly what I tell you t’do!  Step up to that bar!  (Rocky minces up to the bar.  On the bar is a plate of pretzels)  Now, order something!

Rocky: Oh, … excuse me, sir, but … may I have a glass of milk?  It would taste very good with one of these pretzels! 

(Garsen gives Rocky an odd look)

Cannonball: Milk?!  Pour him a whiskey, Garsen!  He’s gonna drink it if I have to funnel it down his throat!

(Garsen pours whiskey into a glass)

Garsen (to Cannonball): Haven’t seen the boy in here before.

Cannonball: Been spendin’ too much time with his ma!

(Rocky picks up the glass, takes a sip)

Rocky: Oh dear!  (He puts the glass down hastily)

Garsen: I see what you mean.

Cannonball: Where’s Tina?

(Tina Tintinnabulation enters left)

Tina: Someone call me?!  (sees Cannonball)  Cannonball!  How your jaw feel?  Kurt Jergens!  He put dent in it!

Garsen: I’d better bring out some more glasses.  (He exits left)

Cannonball: First chance I get I’m gonna measure the floor with that kraut!

Tina: No!  No!  No!  No!  No!  You loco hombre!  He too tough for you!  (picks up a pretzel from the dish on the bar) He make you look like theese!

Cannonball: Thanks for the vote of confidence!  (leading her over to the left exit)  Come on over here a minute.

Tina: Where you take me?!  You no get fresh!

Cannonball: I’ve … got a favor to ask.

Tina: Tina thought so!  She work ‘ere for dinero, not to make whoopee!  Carrumba!

(Rocky dips a pretzel into the whiskey glass and takes a bite and makes a face)

Cannonball: Keep your voice down.  I don’t want Rocky to hear.

Tina: Tina not surprised!

Cannonball: Just … take a look at my boy over there.

Tina (after looking): So?

Cannonball: What d’ya think of him?

Tina: He got pretty boots.

Cannonball: Take another look!  (pause)  Now, from a female’s point of view, what about him?

Tina (after a pause): He nice leetle boy.

Cannonball: That’s the whole blazin’ trouble!

Tina: What you want a Tina?

Cannonball: Make him … not want t’be a nice little boy!

Tina: Carrumba!

Cannonball: He’s always holdin’ on to a poetry book.  I want him holdin’ on t’some girl!

Tina: What girl let heem do that?!  He ‘bout as exciting as table leg!

Cannonball: Well, if any female can get him excited, you can!

Tina (after a pause): Si.  You nice hombre.  Tina try.  (She glances over at Rocky with a mischievous glint in her eyes.  Rocky methodically devours another pretzel)

Rocky: Pa, I think I am beginning to like whiskey!  (He dips a pretzel into the whiskey glass, takes a bit, and winces)  Eeeew, that’s strong!

Cannonball: Rocky, I’m goin’ in t’ the general store.  (to Tina) Don’t want to cramp his style!  (He exits left)

(Tina waits a moment longer and then dances over to Rocky with tambourine and stands next to him, looking at him out of the corner of her eyes)

Tina: Buenos Dias, … Beeg Boy!

Rocky (after looking behind him to find the person she must be addressing, startled): I beg your pardon.

Tina: Why you flirt with Tina?  (She nudges him with an elbow)

Rocky: Oh, I wasn’t flirting.  I was just eating this pretzel!

Tina: You naughty boy!  I see you!  (pause)  You get Tina excited!

Rocky: I … I did?!

Tina: You handsome muchacho!  Perezoso eyes!  Carrumba!

Rocky (swelling with pride): Well, I never!

Tina: Drive muchachas loco!  You no look at Tina, you hear?!

Rocky: Why … why not?

Tina: Perezoso eyes!  Make Tina jello!  Tina … no know what she do!

Rocky: Oh gosh!  (looks away, then slowly looks back at her)

Tina (shielding eyes): No!   No!  (looking)  Oh!  Oh!

Rocky: What’s the matter?!

Tina: Tina jello!

Rocky: I’m terribly sorry!

Tina (looking quickly about the room): We all alone!  (pause)  Eef you try keess me, I no can stop you!

Rocky (concerned): Oh, … how can we correct this situation?!

Tina: Keess Tina!  Then she no longer jello.

Rocky: How … how do I do that?

Tina: Easy.  I show you now.

Rocky: Oh my.

(Big Bill Wretcher and Kurt Jergens enter right.  Wretcher sees Tina and Rocky up close, stops abruptly.  He stares at them a moment)

Big Bill: What’s going on here?!

Tina and Rocky step away from each other)

Tina: Big Bill!  Why you here so early?!

Big Bill: I’m here to meet someone!  (walks over to Rocky)  Any man … (takes a closer look at Rocky) … boy … touches Tina gets a free burial plot on Boot Hill!  Compliments a me!

(Rocky looks worried)

Tina: You don’t own me, Big Bill Wretcher!  Tina koochie, koochie, koochie who she wants!  (She tickles Rocky under his chin)  Kootchie!  Kootchie!  Kootchie!

Big Bill: You’re marryin’ me the end of the week!

Tina: Never!

Big Bill: You don’t have nothin’ to say about it!

Rocky: Here now!  That’s no way to talk to a lady!

Big Bill (menacingly): What did you say your name was?!

Rocky: Albert Sidney Johnston Rhett Butler Stone, … but my father calls me Rocky.

Jergens: Sodvuster vit hot temper!  Yah!  Last week I make face look like pizza!  (He laughs)

Rocky: Then Shane made yours sauerkraut!

(Jergens’s facial expression immediately changes.  He reaches out and grips Rocky’s neck with one hand)

Jergens: You vish me to pop head like pimple?!

(Rocky shakes his head)

Jergens: You schmart-alec!  I don’t like schmart-alec!  (pause)  You vill leaf immediately!  Schnell!  Schnell!  (He holds on to Rocky, who start running in place)

Rocky: I vill!  I vill!  I mean, I will!  I will!

Jergens (still holding Rocky by the neck): Doomkopf!  Schnell!  (Rocky keeps running in place.  Jergens finally releases him.  Rocky dashes off-stage right.  Jergens laughs)

Tina (to Jergens): You bad man!  He nice boy!

Jergens (after a pause): He wears pretty boots.

Big Bill (to Tina gruffly): You and me’s goin’ to have a romantic talk!  (He escorts Tina off-stage left)

Jergens (after glancing about the saloon): Alone.  (pause)  Vere’s Garrett?  Thirsty!  (shouting)  Garsen!  You vill come in here!  Schnell!  (He waits.  Nobody appears) Doomkopf!  I vill help myself!  Maybe find … bottle of schnapps!  (He walks casually over to the bar, taps the bar with his riding crop)  No schnapps!  Just beer!  (He notices the plate of pretzels)  Pretzels!  Yah!  Pretzels mit beer!  (He grabs the plate and a bottle of beer and goes over to a table and sits down.  He bites into the pretzel)

(Opal Stone enters left, sees Jergens at the table, smoothes her hair, and walks alluringly across the stage to the table)

Jergens: Opal!  Liebchen!  My apple strudel!

Opal: Kurtie!  I have only a minute.  Mrs. Erp is getting suspicious!

Jergens: You vill sit down!

Opal: Oh, Kurtie, I can’t!  What if Pa should come in now?!

Jergens: If he does, I vill make face pizza again.  Sit!  (She does so, immediately.  He gazes at her for twenty seconds.  Finally)  I haf written song.  You vill listen!  (He gets up, paces a little, stops, stands off to the side, hand on bar, drumming fingers, then walks over to the table and goes down on one knee.  He starts to sing the English words to the German song “Du, Du Liegst mi rim Herzen”)  You are deep in my heart …”

(Svede Svenson enters right in the middle of the line)

Svede: Yumpin’ Yimminy!

Jergens (gets up, approaches Svede): Vat ish der matter, farmer?  Suspenders too tight?!

Svede:  No!  No!  Yust that you and Opal.  Cannonball will be mad.

Opal: Please, Svede.  Please don’t tell Pa!  Please!

Svede: Your pa will have to know.  That is my duty.

Jergens (after a pause): Garsen says he needs more furniture.  How vould you like me to make you into table?!

Svede: That is not Opal I see before me!

Jergens: Goot!  Schmart!  I sing now!  (He walks to the table, goes down on one knee, his back to Svede)  You vill come here!  (Svede does so, standing behind the table between Jergens and Opal and facing the audience)  Ven I point, you vill say, “Oom-pa-pa, oom-pa-pa.”  Dat is an order!

 Svede: Yah!  I will do it!

(Jergens turns his attention back to Opal and after a moment begins singing)

Jergens: You are deep in my heart.  (He points at Svede)

Svede: Oom-pa-pa, oom-pa-pa.

Jergens: You are much on my mind.  (He points again)

Svede: Oom-pa-pa, oom-pa-pa.

Jergens: You bring me great sorrow,

                You don’t know how much I am yours!

(He stands, points to Svede, who oom-pa-pa’s as Jergens finishes the remaining two lines with beer hall gusto)

                Ja!  Ja!  Ja!  Ja!

                You don’t know how much I am yours!

Opal (after a pause): Donner Vetter!

Jergens (smiling): Come!  You vill now sit on my knee!

(Svede sits on his knee)

Jergens: Not you, Doomkopf!  Her!

(Svede gets up.  Opal comes over and sits on Jergens’s knee.  Grandma Garrett enters right)

Grandma: Opal!  (Opal leaps off Jergens’s knee)  Opal Stone!  What do you think you’re doing?!

Jergens: Liebchen!  Vhat is dis old bat?!  Himmell!

Swede: I tink I better go now.  (He exits right)

Grandma: Old bat, am I?!  (She hits Jergens on top of his helmet with her cane)

Jergens (backing away): Nine!  Nine!

Grandma (pushing the end of the cane into his stomach): You stay away from this girl!

Jergens: I vill!

Opal: Kurtie!

Grandma: That is an order!

Jergens: Yavo!  (He clicks his heels)

(Grandma wacks him over the helmet again and then exits right with Opal, who looks at Jergens regretfully)

Jergens (after a pause): Frauline vit hair like hay – caput!  Find another.  Yah!  (Smiling, he exits right) 

(Ominous music.   It builds to a crescendo.  Stark Verisimilitude enters right.  He looks menacingly about the empty saloon and then saunters over to the bar and pours himself a drink)

(Widow Winslow enters right.  She sees Stark at the bar, stops, and looks flustered)

Widow: Oh dear.  I thought I would fine … Mr. Garsen here … or at least Digger Phelps.

(Long pause while Stark looks Widow over.  Widow becomes more flustered and fusses with her hair)

Stark: Don’t know who they are, … but I’m ten times better!

Widow (impulsively): Oh, you are, at least that!  (realizing her blunder) Oh dear!  There I go again!  (to herself)  Cynthia, you must do a better job of controlling your tongue!

Stark (after looking her over again): You don’t look too bad.  How old are you?  Thirty-six?

Widow (embarrassed that his estimate is so accurate): Uh, … twenty-nine.

Stark: That’s what I thought.  Thirty-six.

Widow (false injury): Mr. whoever-you-are.  I want you to know you are speaking to a lady!  Guessing her age is not what a gentleman does to a ---

Stark (roughishly): I’m not a gentleman!

Widow: To a … I didn’t think so.  (fans herself vigorously)  … To a … well bred … deep feeling … lonely … appreciative lady!

Stark: You’re a widow, aren’t you?

Widow: How’d you guess?

Stark: In my line of work I meet a lot of widows.

Widow: I bet you do!

Stark: You know what I do with widows?

Widow (impulsively): Oh, you are twenty times better than Digger or George!  What?!

Stark (smiling, after a pause): I buy them a drink.

Widow (disappointed): Just a drink?

Stark: And then another drink, and another.

Widow (coyly): Sir, you have a dashingly dangerous aspect about you.  What you must do to helpless moths like me!  I must be on my guard!

Stark (about to pour her a glass of whisky): How much?

Widow: Just the teeniest bit!  Whiskey makes this lady tipsy!

(Stark pours a little into a glass and then more for himself)

Stark: Drink up!

Widow: Oh yes!  (She takes a sip and squeaks.  Stark downs his drink with one swallow)  My goodness you’re so manly!  That must just burn your throat to pieces!

Stark: I’m a hard-living man, lady.  

Widow: Oh, my goodness.  That is just not healthy.  What you need is a good woman to take care of you.  (enunciating each of the following adjectives)  A deep-feeling, lonely, appreciative woman!

Stark (after looking at her three or four seconds): I guess when you’ve seen one widow, you’ve seen them all.  (He strides toward the left exit)

Widow: Oh, where are you going, Mr. …  You never introduced yourself!

Stark (turning about at the exit): Verisimilitude!

Widow: Oh, how nice.  Is that Italian?  (He exits without another look)  Well!  How rude!  What a thoughtless … exciting man!

(George Garsen enters right with Grandma Garrett)

Garsen: A saloon is no place for you to enter, Grandma Garrett.

Grandma: For the hundredth time, don’t call me “Grandma”!  I’m much younger than you think!

Widow: That’s right, George.  She isn’t a day over seventy!

Garsen (seeing Widow at the bar): Widow Winslow!

Widow (a bit exasperated): “Cynthia,” George!  “Cynthia”!

Grandma: Seventy be derned!  I’m not ten years older than you, ya man-hungry hussy!

Widow: Oh really?  I do declare, that must make you just thirty-nine!

Grandma: The day you saw twenty-nine George Washington chopped down the cherry tree!

Widow: Since you know what day it was, Grandma Garrett, you must have seen him do it!
Garsen: Ladies!  Please!  You have no reason to quarrel like this!

(Each woman looks at George; then each looks at the other)

Grandma: You know, George, you just might be right!
Widow: Oh?  Giving up, Grannie?  Is the competition too tough for you?

Grandma: Competition be derned!  The prize isn’t worth it!  I’m goin’ to say hello to Digger Phelps!  (She starts toward the left exit)

Widow: What a coincidence!  I was about to pass his shop myself.

(Each hurries toward the left exit to beat the other.  Widow arrives first, looks at Grandma, and laughs.  Both exit)

 Garsen (perplexed): Competition?  A prize?  What were they talking about?  No prize here!  (He shrugs his shoulders and starts drying a glass with his towel)

 (Stark Verisimilitude enters left)

Garsen: What’ll you have, stranger?

Stark: Wretcher!  He’s late!

Garsen: Oh, that all depends on where he’s supposed to be.  Now if he’s on his horse and he’s supposed to be getting a haircut, …

Stark: Beat it.

Garsen: … then I’d say he’s late.  (pause)  “Beat it”?!  But this is my saloon!

(In one swift motion Stark shoots Garsen’s hat off.  Garsen  stares at Stark for five seconds)

Stark (casually): Oooops.  I missed.
Garsen rushes out the right exit)

(Stark blows on the barrel tip of his pistol, spins his pistol several times around his trigger finger, and holsters it)

(Big Bill Wretcher enters left, sees Stark, and stops)

Big Bill: Verisimilitude?!

Stark: Wretcher?!

Big Bill: That’s right!

Stark: The name fits!
Big Bill (after a pause, ignoring the insult): Thank you for coming.

Stark: Where’s the money?

Big Bill: You get half now – the other half later.  (Stark draws and puts the end of his pistol against Big Bill’s nostrils)  How … about three-quarters now.  (Stark cocks the firing pin)  What the heck, take it all!  (Stark lowers the pistol, spins it around his trigger finger, and holsters it)

Stark: When do I do it?
Big Bill (very politely): Is … tomorrow too soon?

Stark: Gotta be tomorrow!  Tomorrow’s Saturday.  (sarcastically)  Gotta be back t’teach my Sunday school class!  (He chuckles at his joke)

(Digger Phelps enters and stands at the right entrance with Widow Winslow and Grandma Garrett)

Digger: Hey, Wretcher.  When am I gonna get some stiffs?!

(Stark whirls and shoots the hat off Digger’s head)

Digger: Ahhhhh!

Grandma: (her eyes glowing): Who is that handsome young feller?!  My, can he shoot!

Widow: What a man!

(Stark spins his pistol into his holster)

Big Bill: Be here about this time tomorrow, undertaker!

Digger (picking up his hat): Uh, yes, Big Bill!  Uh, who shall I expect to measure?

Big Bill (dramatically): Joe Garrett!  (pause)  And a gun fighter named Shane!

Stark (startled, then shows a worried look): Did you say … Sh-Sh-Shane?!

Big Bill: That’s right!  Something wrong?!

Stark: Heard about him … back in Kansas.  (visibly swallows)

Big Bill: So?

Shane (a worried look): He blew a hole in a man in a pool hall with a .45.  They rolled a cue ball through him before they buried him!

Big Bill: What does that have t’do with us?!

Stark (suddenly tough): Nothin’!  Show me where I bed down!
Big Bill: Right this way.  (They pass by Digger, Widow, and Grandma)
Widow (warmly): Hello again, … stranger!

Stark (after looking her over again, to Digger): You the undertaker?

Digger (extending his hand): Digger Phelps.

Stark (indicating Widow Winslow): Bury this!  (He and Big Bill exit right)

Widow: Well, of all the nerve!

Grandma: Now there’s a man with smarts!  A real prize!  (She ambles out the right exit after him)

Digger (smiling to himself): Finally, some business!  (He rubs his hands together)  I wonder what coffin Mrs. Garrett would like, cherry wood, or pine?  (He exits right followed by the Widow)

Widow: Now you just wait for me, Digger.  Don’t you go runnin’ off without me, you hear?!