Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Act I of Black Samba: a Brazilian Dance in Two Unnatural Acts


Related image
Related image{This was written in 1995 Paris--my first play from Pré St. Gervais.  So, pre-Obama and pre-911; right about the time of the OKC bombing.  As garish and extreme as it seemed when it was first presented at Soho Rep in 1997, the current political Guignol makes Black Samba seem contemplative, even effete.--mc}
Related image



Black Samba
a Brazilian dance in two unnatural acts

by
Mick Collins

CirqueMinime/Paris
(1995)

130 Forest St., #3
Montclair, New Jersey
USA


All Rights Reserved




From: Thesis Against Occultism 
By T.W. Adorno 

IX. The cardinal sin of occultism is the contamination of mind and existence, the latter becoming itself an attribute of mind. Mind arose out of existence, as an organ for keeping alive. In reflecting existence, however, it becomes at the same time something else. The existent negates itself as thought upon itself. Such negation is mind’s element. To attribute to it positive existence, ever of a higher order, would be to deliver it up to what it opposes. Late bourgeois ideology has again made it what it was for pre-animism, a being-in-itself modeled on the social division of labor, on the split between manual and intellectual labor, on the planned domination over the former. In the concept of mind-in-itself, consciousness has ontologically justified and perpetuated privilege by making it independent of the social principle by which it is constituted. Such ideology explodes in occultism: it is idealism come full circle. Just by virtue of the rigid antithesis of being and mind, the latter becomes a department of being. If idealism demanded solely on behalf of the whole, the idea, that being be mind and that the latter exist, occultism draws the absurd conclusion that existence is determinate being: 

Existence, after it has become, is always benign with a non-being, 
so that this non-being is taken up in simple unity with the being.  
Non-being taken up in being, the fact that the concrete whole is 
in the form of being, of immediacy, constitutes determinateness 
as such.  

The occultists take literally the non-being as in ‘simple unity with being’, and their kind of concreteness is a surreptitious short-cut from the whole to the determinate which can defend itself by claiming that the whole, having once been determined, is no longer the whole. They call to metaphysics: Hic Rhodus hic salta: if the philosophic investment of spirit with existence is determinable, then finally, they sense, any scattered piece of existence must be justifiable as a particular spirit. The doctrine of the existence of the spirit, the ultimate exaltation of bourgeois consciousness, consequently bore teleologically within it the belief in spirits, its ultimate degradation. The shift to existence, always ‘positive’ and justifying the world, implies at the same time that thesis of the positivity of mind, pinning it down, transposing the absolute into appearance. Whether the whole objective world as ‘product’ is to be spirit, or a particular thing a particular spirit, cease to matter, and the world-spirit becomes the supreme Spirit, the guardian angel of the established, de-spiritualized order. On this the occultists live: their mysticism is the enfant terrible of the mystical moment in Hegel. They take speculation to the point of fraudulent bankruptcy. In passing off determinate being as mind, they put objectified mind to the test of existence, which must prove negative. No spirit exists. 






BLACK SAMBA

a Brazilian dance in two unnatural acts




Characters: 


Nicky: a young Latin, not yet twenty, very brown and very beautiful. 

V: a middle-aged man, very thin and very white. 

Mavis: a woman in late-middle-age, once beautiful, now somewhat flaccid. 

Cecil: Mavis’ partner and like her in many ways. 



Place: 
The estate of Mavis and Cecil in the hills west of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.


Time:  
An imagined present with an imaginary past and no future.


Act 1 is in June. Act 2, Scene 1 in November; Scene 2 in December.





Acknowledgements:

John O’Connell, for the courage to face incontinence.

Nick Harper, from whose lap top it all sprung.

Teddy Adorno, for daily negations.

Danise & Yana, for direction.

and

Paris, enfin.




ACT 1 

THE SET AT RISE: 

Stage L is Cecil’s & Mavis’ living room. There is one door UC, a large mirror on the US wall, and a low glass table CL on which are a trumpet and a chimney glass with a large tropical flower in it. 

Stage R is a riser, 5’x5’x3’ high, say, on which sits V, a middle-aged man, very thin and very white, completely naked but for gauze bandages over his eyes. His arms and legs are bound to the metal office chair in which he sits (as time passes, it should become apparent that these bonds are of insufficient integrity to hold him without his compliance), and wires protrude from his crotch, his breasts, and the bandages over his eyes. The wires are connected to a bank of half a dozen Sears Die-Hard batteries stacked SR on the riser, with a big piece of 4.0 cable dropping from them over the front of the riser and running off SR. A microphone is suspended, about a foot above V’s head. 

SPOT UP on Nicky in area DS (Nicky’s area). He is a small Latin young man, not yet twenty. He stands at attention wearing a uniform of the streets with several pastel-colored squirt guns strapped down. 

He raises his fist in a revolutionary salute. 

NICKY
Somente os trabalhadores e peoes chegaram ate o fin. . . .
(louder) Somente os trabalhadores e peoes chegaram ate o fin. . . .
(yells) Viva Che!

SPOT UP (less brightly) on V. 

V
Adio, Ramon! Adio, Catalan! Adio, San Sebastian!

Nicky changes his salute from a clenched fist to a “V”. 

NICKY
Ate a vitoria sempre! . . . (louder) Ate a vitoria sempre! . . .
(yells) Viva Che! Viva Fidel!

V
Bessa me, bessa me mucho.

Nicky changes the “V” to the “digita impudica” (he flips the bird). 

NICKY
Vai te fuder e comer peixe! . . . Viva Che! Viva Fidel!
Viva Gonzalo!

SPOTS OUT on Nicky & V. Nicky exits. 

LIGHTS UP SL on glass table. 

After SEVERAL BEATS, 

DIM LIGHT UP on V. 

V
(He is seized by an Electric Shock)
Millions for charity, and not a dime for justice. . . . We trade in
debt now, almost exclusively. . . . We’re deep in Volume Two,
irrevocably into Book Two, with no memory or understanding or
memory of understanding the first book of Capital: it’s all circulation
now, with no appreciation for production. . . . Self-valorizing value
has burst the surly bonds of the material world and exists in the ethereal
world—the metaphysical world—of interest, derivative securities,
contingent-value rights, commissions and appraisals, and differed
taxation on off-shore trusts and back-end points on distributors’ gross,
and so on, and so on. . . . Commodity fetishism has extended to Credit
and the monopoly that administers it. . . . You are what you own, what
you’re owed, the amount of debt you control below you, which is always
mortgaged, or leveraged, sounds less morbid, to ten, twelve times its
value. The note held over your head (like Excalibur or the executioner’s
axe) by those above you. That is, you loathe those who owe you and
revere those to whom you are indebted. Or is it the other way round?
No matter, for these are no longer real considerations, but merely
reflexive responses to the cudgels of Credit. . . . The entire canon
of World Literature, both secular and ecclesiastical, both poetry and
prose, both the arts and the sciences, both male and female and all
around and in between: it’s all smoke, incense smoke, and rhinestone
glitter to distract human attention from the stinking fact: all results
from material coercion—irresistible gravity, the pull of the grave. . . .
It’s probably too late to make it right, now. . . . Right now. . . . That’s
what’s wrong: Right now. . . . Mourn the pasts and fear tomorrow
and the terrible retribution it must bring. But damnation is right now.
This prison, endowed in the name of Bad Faith, from which no amount
of wealth, no delusional good deeds, no medication will buy your release.
. . . Even death is not a release. . . . The thrill of murder, perhaps, but so
brief. . . . We bought misery on margin, and sold our decency short. . . .
Well, as Nicky says, “Fuck ‘em in the ass and feed ‘em fish!”
And if they don’t like it, fuck ‘em in the ass again.

Nicky enters UC. He has one of his squirt guns in hand. He CROSSES to glass table and puts a set of keys on it. He exits UC. 

SEVERAL BEATS. 

V
(Responding to Electric Shock)
Isn’t it odd? . . . It is not odd.

(The following scene, the dialogue of which can be conflated, is played with actors entering and exiting the stage intermittently, speaking their lines on and off stage at the director’s discretion; and though the two actors might be on stage at the same time, they should not exchange lines on stage.) 

Mavis and Cecil are a couple well along into late-middle-age. Like all couples who have been together some time they have come to resemble one another in uncanny ways. 

MAVIS
. . . but how can you remember Shanghai, what actually happened
in Shanghai? Thirty years ago.

CECIL
It was only twenty, really. (Coughs) When daddy brought the four
of . . . –No, quite right. Thirty. It was thirty. Yes, indeed, you’re
quite right, thirty years. What do you mean how can I remember?
It was like only yesterday, my god, how would I have forgotten that
beastly time. . . (Coughs) Like yesterday.

(Cecil coughs regularly, or irregularly, throughout.) 

MAVIS
I was there, darling, too. I was with you. I don’t remember a thing—
not really—not a thing about that time. . . . Well, I do remember gin
and bitters at the Barres’, and Jack coming back from Tashkent with
hashish—but not really—not really remembering. Not real memories.

CECIL
That little bastard will turn up late. Just wait and see if I’m right.
Little cockroach, with all his little games and schemes. . . . His
bows and scrapes. . . . Little brown bugger . . . little spic . . .
faggot. . . . If he turns up late—he’s like every driver we’ve ever
had: goddam little felonious fuck! You teach these little wogs to
drive and immediately they go into business for themselves and treat
you like a fucking mushroom. If he turns up late—

MAVIS
Darling, here, come let me freshen your drink before you get an
embolism. Bring your glass here. Nicky will be here when he
gets here. Come here. Bring your drink, darling. . . . It’s just such
a long time ago. Like it no longer ever really happened. . . . Only
thirty years. Thirty years, lost. . . . Wasn’t Shanghai lovely?
Wasn’t it a beautiful place then?

CECIL
Think you’re getting potty. Best leave the pitcher with me. 
If we turn up late and stewed, Bitsy and her lot will be unbearable. . . .
You simply refuse to accept the passage of time—you feel by blotting
out the memory, you’ll be able to cancel the years have passed. Well,
you needn’t bother, the years have been quite gentle to you, my love.
You’re living proof of moderation’s gifts. . . . Absolutely nothing in
excess, right, darling? . . . That little Portagee prick!

MAVIS
When you can pry it from my cold, dead hand. Maman will dispense
the last of the joyful juniper berries. . . .  And he’s not due for another
five minutes. Relax.

CECIL
Daddy had this little Chinaman would take him back and forth to
Tsing Tau. Worshipped daddy. . . . This little . . . fag, Nicky . . .
he’s probably off with his mates—

MAVIS
He’s to be here at half-five. Why are you blathering?

CECIL
Daddy’s little Chinaman would take me home to his family. Take
me down river in his punt. To the opium house. To the racetrack.

MAVIS
Darling, do you have any cash? I can’t seem to find my beaded bag.
Do you have any cash, dear?

CECIL
Hum yum sum yum sum sa ya. He lived in Chinatown. Remember
I took you, showed you Zhao’s house in Shanghai? Behind that great
market in Chinatown. You remember?

MAVIS
God, I hope I didn’t leave it at Mario’s. It had all my cards in it, and
those beads you gave me. . . . Do you have any cash, Cecil?

CECIL
Sy oh ling ling bo bo. Yes, maman, I have money. My god, you’re
Djuna Barnes with a martini.

(They have finally come together on stage.) 

BEATS. 

MAVIS
Hope Nicky remembers gin.

(This exchange is difficult.) 

CECIL
(Coughs) Two bites, back of my head.

Pause. 

MAVIS
Uh huh.

CECIL
Yes, right at the top. Bottom of where the bald spot might be.
(Coughs)

Pause. 

MAVIS
And that’s why you’ve got this congestion?

CECIL
Well . . .

BEATS. 

MAVIS
You noticed the congestion before or after you noticed the bites?

BEATS. 

CECIL
No, Dolly, . . . I think it was—I don’t really remember when I noticed
the bites . . . really. But the congestion, the cough . . .

Pause. 

MAVIS
Yes, of course. The TB.

CECIL
                   No, no. Of course. But this time, Molly. This spate . . . My god, it’s
                   been . . . They’re damn curious bites. I think it was consequential, Dolly.
Consequential: the bites then the congestion. I noticed the bites, then the
                   congestion.

MAVIS
When did you notice the bites? You’ve had this cough days now.
                          When did you notice the bites?

CECIL
Well . . . I noticed them—well, . . .

MAVIS
So the noticing was consequential. Isn’t that it, CC? Because you’ve
                        had this cough some time now.

CECIL
No . . . Well, yes. I have, yes. . . . May I have a bit more of Mavis’
                          Ma’velous Med’sin, bo bo ah?

Mavis pours him more martini. 

CECIL
Bo bo ah, kamas ka ma, Johnny got a lickin’, so ha ha ha.

MAVIS
So the noticing was consequential.

CECIL
Yes, Molly, the noticing of the phenomena was consequential. Though
the phenomena themselves were merely consecutive. Yes, it was the
noticing. It was noticing the bites that caused me to notice, or perhaps
re-notice, the congestion. Kamas kam ah? Causation appeared only
                      after the noticing, yes.

MAVIS
                                    Perhaps more vermouth.

CECIL
And though it’s preposterous to assume that these bites caused my
congestion—there is something about the sequence of noticing the
bites then the congestion that makes one, however hysterically,
to assume that the one brought on the other. Damn foreign country.
Damned exotic bugs. Viruses. Straight from hell. Thank god for gin.
And you, my dove. My Dolly.

MAVIS
You look just splendid, CC. . . . As do I, I’m sure.

Nicky enters his area DS. He sets about filling his squirt guns from a heavy porcelain bottle. 

V
(Responding to an electric shock)
                                    Isn’t it odd? . . . Is it not odd?

CECIL
It is queer. They had to bribe Delbert with two million quid to run
Brazoro. Two million, the farm in Surrey, the ten-place De Haviland
and a Jag for Bitsy. Just to run that bloody hole.

MAVIS
Bitchy wrecked the Jaguar first time out. And I’d hardly call what Del
                       does running anything.

CECIL
And yet these sunburnt little buggers will work their short lives away
in his bloody pit, slogging their guts out fourteen, sixteen hours a day
for a dish of watery soup and a drafty place to shit. Exceedingly queer.

V
Isn’t it queer? . . . Are you queer, Nicky? . . . You can see why they
might not be the nicest boys. Why their amusements might bend
                        toward the painful, the violent.


MAVIS
Her surgeon has her on some unregistered medications—

CECIL
Just a load of colourfully turned out cocaine, you ask me.

MAVIS
                        Oh, I don’t think so. Doctors down here have gotten quite sophisticated 
                                since the War.

V
(Responding to electric shock)
                                                            Yes, indeed.

CECIL
Same old cotswollow: cocaine and opium and belladonna
and how-you-been-keeping all done up with great quantities
                             of alcohol.

V
Dr. Colis Brown does more than Milton can to justify God’s ways to Man?

MAVIS
                                                All petroleum based.

CECIL
                                                What?

MAVIS
All extracted from petroleum—the carbon-based molecules—
                           the carbon molecules, I don’t know—it’s like those sugar substitutes.

CECIL
Medicines?

MAVIS
I really believe the Bosh started it. Thought it up.

V
Hitler was cut off from his Turkish opium fields.


CECIL
‘Started’—?

MAVIS
                                                Synthesizing.

V
                                                Adolophine Hitler.

CECIL
What?

MAVIS
                                    From petroleum. Medicines from petroleum.

CECIL
                                                You mean like Vaseline?

V
Petroleum jelly—right, Nicky?—the first-aid kit in a jar. 
                                  Good for what impales ya.

MAVIS
No! Not like Vaseline—well, yes, like Vaseline, but these molecules
                        are adapted to resemble all the—

CECIL
                                                God, where is that boy?

V
But Hitler didn’t have access to the Rain Forest. To the Natural Medicines.
to the hyperventilating leaves of the mountains or the soporific blossoms
of the fields. Coal from Selesia. Maybe oil from Baku, if he could work it.
He couldn’t. Twenty million Russians saw to that. They saved it all for
Arco and Esso. Hitler was just way under-capitalized is all.
(Responding to electric shock)
That’s all. Right, Nicky?
(Another shock)
Oh, mother necessity.

MAVIS
I really think it’s what keeps them together. . . . 
                                        His work and her addictions.

CECIL
God, Molly, don’t say that when I so need another helping of
                             your deliciousness.

She pours the last few drops into his glass. 

MAVIS
                                                Say goodbye.

CECIL
                                                This can’t be the end.

V
                                                Pray for the end.

MAVIS
Until Bitsy’s. Or if you can get Nicky to go. Send for his drinks boy.
Let’s just drink Del’s liquor. Get some of our bridge money back. . . .
The world-wide petroleum conspiracy, CC. It does not end with your
                       motor car. It goes to the blood in your veins.

CECIL
I’m sure it does, Dolly, and mine is running exceedingly thin. . . .
Nicky’s probably screwing the little drinks boy, over his bicycle
                           seat, right now. Dammit!

Cecil exits UC. 

CECIL 
(OS)
Now you mention it: Lately we’ve had a good deal of very hard
money going into Riyadh, Jeddah, Glaxo-Wellcome joint venture
in Saudi, Al-Haya Medical Company, all bio-tech deals.

V
How do you gratify yourself, Nicky? Breaking your young
countrymen open like goose-guns? Feeding them your eight
gauge, double-aught buckshot loaded cartilage. . . .
Sweet Nicky.

Nicky has finished filling his squirt guns, takes his bottle, and exits. 

Mavis crosses US to mirror. She looks into it for SEVERAL BEATS. 

MAVIS
Hello, how are you? . . . Hello, it’s lovely, isn’t it? Lovely.
Just lovely. . . . Hello, dear. . . .

V
(Electric shock) How is your daughter? How is your profoundly,
grotesquely, birth-defective child? . . . How is your handicapped,
lovely little girl?

MAVIS
Delightful, just delightful. She sends me cards, beautiful cards,
at least once a month. She’s such a good girl. And she adores
her new school—just adores school. Adores Switzerland.
And the nuns—she so loves the nuns—oh, and they her.
My darling little thing. My darling.

V
How long have you had her locked away in that bin?

MAVIS
She’ll be sixteen in December. Growing like a little weed. . . .
She is such a joy to both of us. To CC especially. Finds such
joy in her little cards. Her little pictures. She makes them herself,
don’t you know.

V
I can imagine. Correspondence from a child without hands, or arms,
with a brain-shunt, maintained on a respirator and dialysis machine,
(Electric shock) must be quite a giggle. (Shock) And once a month,
you say. At least. Proustian.

Mavis leaves the mirror. 

MAVIS
They say she’s making great progress. We’ll be happily surprised
when we get back for holidays. They say she is making leaps and
bounds. . . . Oh yes, yes, she’ll be back with us in no time at all.

V
Maybe not in Rio. . . . Maybe not the best place—the place best
suited for a crippled child. A girl child. After all, you know how
they treat children here. Whole children. –Poor children.


MAVIS
After CC left Daiwa—the institute—The Daiwa Institute—he joined
the Settlements Bank—it’s the Daiwa Institute for Social Research,
I think, —no, just Research, I think—but we were with the Settlements
Bank in Basel, and, you know, —Development . . . the developing world–
And it just seemed, —it all seemed so perfect. When she came.

V
Punishing her for surviving her birth . . . Of course your pregnancy was
no day at the beach, was it? But still, you can’t blame little . . .

MAVIS
Mary Ellen. . . . Mary Ellen. CC’s mother and grandmother.
All I got were the stretch marks. (Laughs) CC was re-posted
so quickly, we really had no chance to show her off. Pity.
But that’s the life, isn’t it? Oh, our families understand.
They have to, don’t they?

Cecil enters with a drink in each hand. He goes to Mavis and gives her a drink. 

Nicky enters from UR on to the riser. He carries a pan and a small white towel. 
He kneels beside V, unbinds his L foot, and begins to wash it. 

V
Careful.

CECIL
What a mess! God awful mess.

MAVIS
Where’d you find this? What is it?

V
You’re late.

NICKY
Basta de falar ingles par hoje.

CECIL
Called Del’s to say we’d be late. Neither’s there yet.

MAVIS
Nicky in the kitchen? He get you the drinks?

V
Only English now.

CECIL
Oh no. Not in this bloody lifetime. Made ‘em myself, didn’t I?
Out of my bleeding tackle box, didn’t I?

V
Your hands feel good.

MAVIS
Cheers.

CECIL
Afraid I haven’t your genteel touch.

MAVIS
Indeed.

V
Did you bring the book?

MAVIS
Carried off by Gypsies were they?

NICKY
Si—yes, the book. . . . You think I understand less English.

V
No, I think they understand less English.

CECIL
Their girl said she’d be along straight away. Said she’d called
from Vieira Souto.

MAVIS
This is absolutely ghastly. Tastes like turps—or that putrescence
you lived on in Tsing Mai. Bogswhattah, was it?

CECIL
Yes, Molly, something like that.

V
The book?


NICKY
Your feet are getting harder. The more I rub . . . I have it.

CECIL
I say let’s go up there, sack the place—take their etchings down
to Feira de Acari—let’s not forget the liquor, there’s gallons of it
up there—and piss off before Bits and Del get back.

MAVIS
But really, CC. This swill will have us barking like dogs and smelling
like dry cleaning.

V
It’s as if I no longer understand the things I had to tell you. My ideas . . .

NICKY
Don’t. I understand.

MAVIS
But Nicky.

CECIL
Of course, yes, Nicky.

MAVIS
He should have returned by now.

V
How can you? (ind. batteries) I think these are too weak. I don’t
feel it as much.

Nicky goes to the other side of V and does the other foot. 

V
Can you find more? Just one more, until we can finish.

CECIL
Your faith was ill-founded, my duck.

MAVIS
He’s—

CECIL
—a blaggart. A dirty, little brown blaggart.

V
Please stop now.

NICKY
Just a little more. You will see.

MAVIS
(ind. drink) Really, CC, you didn’t even try.

CECIL
You know I can’t find anything. I grabbed the first thing looked
clear and spiritual.

NICKY
It will relax you.

V
No, I need more. To work. . . . Please.

MAVIS
I feel like an autopsied cadaver. Can’t you smell the Casualty Ward?

NICKY
Not yet. . . . Be still. . . . Just see.

CECIL
It’s all for your little Nicky. How dependable. . . . Lord!
Del and Bit know how he treats us.

V
You have grown . . . so . . . old, Nicky. So much older. . . .
Even just now. Here. Now.

MAVIS
My little Nicky? How’s that?

CECIL
You’re always his advocate. Mavis for the Defense.

NICKY
You’re like a cat when I rub you. You get—


MAVIS
He was Del’s gift to you, as I recall. –Del’s welcome to Rio present to you.

V
Stop. Please. Now. . . . You must find me fresh power so
we can work.

CECIL
I’d have chucked him out.

MAVIS
You surely would not have, dear boy. You wouldn’t offend Delbart
that way.

NICKY
Just a small minute more. Your nails need cutting.

V
“Paring”, yes. . . . But I need the pan. Now. Please be good to
me now.

CECIL
He meant nothing to Del. He’d been trying to get rid of him
for months.

Nicky kneels between V’s legs, facing him. He empties the pan. As V rises slightly, with painful effort, Nicky slips the pan onto the chair and V sits in it. 

MAVIS
You can’t be serious. Nicky ran their household—their whole staff.
He meant a great deal to Del.

Nicky’s hands have disappeared in front of him, and his head is lowered toward V. 

V
You’re a good boy. A good man. You’re a good man.

MAVIS
And Bits, too, I should think.

V
Please be good. Be very good. . . . Oh, Nicky.


CECIL
You’re quite serious. About Bits, I mean. . . . You think that
little devil Nicky was—

MAVIS
Oh, Cecil, don’t be a child. . . . Cecil, have you heard from the home?

CECIL
From Basel? Those bleeders are never off my line. Don’t know
when they have time for the rest of the world.

MAVIS
No, the home. Sainte Bernadette’s.

CECIL
                                                            Mavis.

MAVIS
I just need to know.

CECIL
You know very well.

V
Please. Oh, please. . . . Be a good man. Be a good man.

MAVIS
She may need me. . . . Us.

CECIL
Her needs, believe me, are being met. . . . Unlike ours, at the moment,
I am loathe to say.

MAVIS
                                                            Oh, Cecil.

CECIL
Of course, darling.

V
Yes, darling. Yes, darling boy. You are so good to an old man.
To an old, sick man.


CECIL
But he’s always struck me as such an absolute . . . little . . .
turd burglar. With all his make-up and disco pals.

MAVIS
                                                            Who?

CECIL
Who? Yassar Arafat. . . . Nick, of course.

MAVIS
Well . . . what about Delbart? Surely all his business hasn’t
blinded you to how wet Del is.

CECIL
My Dolly. How really wicked you can be. . . . You know,
you’re quite right about this stuff. I feel right on the verge
of psychic impaction. On the border of a blackout.

MAVIS
                                                            Oh, stop it.

NICKY
Are you clean yet?

V
You must get me some fresh power. Please. Right away.

CECIL
Oh, I know. Like every other businessman—Christian businessman—
I always found that so charming about Del, his embracing the faith.

V
Nicky, I can’t do this anymore.

Nicky takes the pan from under V. 

CECIL
Justifying that potted CV. I mean, French Indo-China, indeed.
MI6 and the Paris Club. Indeed, indeed.

V
Even with all your help.

MAVIS
Now don’t get started. There’s no use.

NICKY
                                                            I will try.

Nicky rebinds V’s leg and exits the riser. 

CECIL
It’s just that I don’t see the necessity of it.

V
Just one more. A fresh one, please.

MAVIS
                                                The necessity?

CECIL
                                                That’s right.

MAVIS
                                                Of what? His Christianity?

CECIL
His Christianity. His Judaism. His Islam.

MAVIS
                                                This is interfering with me.

CECIL
When he ran the renal and retina bank, the eye and kidney pie trust,
down in Bangalore or somewhere in the south, Southern India,
you know, you don’t think he was a Christian then, do you?
Used to say he could get you multiple organ transplants for less
than it would cost you to join a health spa. He used to fly these
rich Europeans, sick Southeast Asians, in to this little beach in
the Lebanon and let them pick out their own organ donors, from
among the sun bathers. Now that’s banking.

MAVIS
But he has been quite successful. And loyal. And contributed
to your success—ours.


CECIL
Of course. Free Soviet Jewry and all that Papal bullshite about
just wars in the Balkans, and buying short sterling to spiff up all
that income from paving Wog-World with Soros’ nasty little,
limb-chewing land mines—god knows under what relic-encrusted
rubric that was done. . . .

V
Oh, hurry little Nicky.

MAVIS
Mind how you go. After all.

CECIL
Oh, I know, darling. After all. I’m his humble hand-maiden.
But I don’t have to deal spiritually with the mullahs in Bosnia
and their rental agreements with the UN or share a chillum with
the Mujahadin or celebrate Buddhist fertility in the Golden Triangle
or god-knows-who they pray to in Medellin.

MAVIS
                                                No, Cecil. He’s your friend.

CECIL
                                                Oh, Dolly, Dolly, my dear Dolly.


V
You can’t know the half of it. The half and half of it.

CECIL
It’s all bits or bytes—it’s all just info to me. Oh, the immiseration of
the world is on my things-to-do-today list as well. Don’t get me
wrong. I live to spread toil and slow suffering and to assure that
death will come only when despair is complete, just like the next
fellow in the old Business Community. But unlike Del and his lot,
I don’t pretend I’m saving the world from, I don’t know, Bolshevism,
or Paganism, or—Rosacrucianism—I don’t know. Bull jism. I’m
just doing the best I can to keep gin on the table, and getting precious
little help from the fucking help. Nicky! God damn you!

MAVIS
I’m going to make some coffee, CC. God, you’ve poisoned us, you have.

Mavis exits UC. 

MAVIS (OS)
There’s some Dexedrine, old, in my Louis Vee. It’s ‘pro-war’,
as they used to say. But you might try it, CC. Really.

Nicky re-enters riser with an automobile battery. 

CECIL
Oh, Molly, it’s only alcoholism—but I like it. I think one of us
will have to go down the hill.

Nicky begins to hook up the battery to the bank of Die-Hards. 

V
Will that be enough, you think?

Cecil goes to glass table and finds keys. 

CECIL 
I’ll be screwed blue and tattooed. . . . Molly. 

As Nicky exits the riser. 

NICKY
                                                            You will tell me.

Cecil exits UC. 

CECIL (OS)
                                                The vermin has been and gone.

V
I feel nothing.

NICKY 
(OS)
Wait. . . . There.

V is seized by Electric Shock. 

V
Yes. But . . . Very slight, I’m afraid. Very weak.

NICKY (OS)
                                    This timer . . . something is . . . here.

V is again seized. 

V
I can’t be sure. Just bring the book. Hurry.

MAVIS 
(OS)
(Shouting)
No, CC! I won’t have you wrecking the car.

Nicky re-enters riser with a book. He kneels at V’s side and opens the book. 

NICKY (Reading)
“The essence of a hedge fund is the ability to bet either way,
and profits are magnified by borrowing.”

V
Yes. That was last time. Further on.

NICKY
Ah, I don’t know. Here. (Reading) “I decided the overpriced currency
was doomed. The Wampum Fund was able to borrow five million pounds
and change it into German marks at a rate of two point seven nine to the
pound. Once Sterling collapsed, I sold the marks back for less, repaid
the loans and pocketed the difference: nine hundred fifty-eight million
dollars, to be precise.”

V
Yes, That’s right.

MAVIS 
(OS)
Cecil, don’t be idiotic.

NICKY
I don’t understand.

V
No, of course not. Go on.


NICKY
(Reading) “This technique of betting markets either way, combined
with access to unlimited and unprecedented lines of credit, have
allowed me to turn my attentions to the broader horizons of
philanthropy—literally, to express in its fullness my love for my
fellow man.” . . . Sir . . . ? Are you sure?

V
Listen. Take this down. You have a pen?

Nicky takes a pencil from his pocket. 

NICKY
                                                Yes, sir. Go on.

Mavis enters UC with coffee cup. 

MAVIS
Call Dead Clive’s, the drinks boy will bring it. I won’t have you
killing yourself in our beautiful car. You can’t drive sober, Cecil,
god, slow down.

V
(Dictating)
“The critical problem is”—no, make that “lies”—“The critical problem
lies in the transfer of surplus value from the public sphere to the private
sphere”—no, get rid of “public sphere”; make it, “the transfer from public
to private spheres.”

NICKY
(Reading)
“The critical problem lies in the transfer of surplus value from the public
to the private spheres.” . . . More?

V
Something’s wrong with that.

NICKY
Isn’t it just taxation in reverse?

V
The batteries are not working.


NICKY
I think it’s the timer.

Nicky exits riser. 

MAVIS
Perhaps if he were dead. The insurance . . . pension. I would
miss him. . . . No. . . . I’d have Mary Ellen to spend time with.
Such time as I have left. . . . It was really too late . . .

V
“Spheres”, plural is wrong. It doesn’t scan. If I drop the article.

MAVIS
                                    But I wanted her. She is mine. My life.

CECIL 
(OS)
The bloody fucking car is dead. Dead as old dead Clive.
Crank won’t turn.

V
This whole thing . . . I can no longer . . . Nicky, where are you.

CECIL 
(OS)
                                                Blast!

V is seized by a large jolt of Electricity. 

CECIL 
(OS)
                                    The phone’s gone dead. Bloody hell.

V
                                    Ah . . . Nicky . . . god.

Cecil enters UC drinking from a small bottle of cologne. 

V
                                    Bless me, I think I’ve soiled myself. . . . Nicky.

CECIL
I can’t get the phone to work, Molly. Give it a go, will you.

Nicky re-enters riser. 

NICKY
I ran it through the house current.

Nicky picks up and opens the book. He prepares to write. 

MAVIS
                                                What on earth?

NICKY
                                                Now go on.

V
I’m a bit off, but (Dictating) “This can be achieved by the manipulation
of interest rates, both short and long term.”

MAVIS
                                                What on earth?

CECIL
A present from dear dead mumsy, . . . sent seasons ago. Just froo-frooing
up for our evening, Dolly. Do go give dear old Dead Clive’s a knock-up.

V
Let me see, (Dictating) “Differences of nearly two percentage points in
three-month rates and of point six percentage points for ten-year”—Nicky,
who knows we’re here?

MAVIS
It’s the Wares’ I should call. Make apologies. This is becoming quite
impossible.

NICKY
They must know the car is back.

CECIL
Oh, don’t be daft, Mavis. I’m as right as ruddy fucking rain. . . .
And Del’s the only hard money I have in my brochure.

NICKY
But you, nobody. I’m sure.

CECIL
So don’t even think of canceling. . . . If he decides to trade me for some
nice soft World Bank money—claim that slag pit is a wet-lands and get
fucking Ducks Unlimited to sponsor a restructuring—we’ll be dining out
of tins and drinking from the loo.

V
                                                We must hurry then.

MAVIS
Cecil, you’re frightening me. Let’s have a bit of a lie down,
wait for Nicky. When he gets back, he can sort this out. . . .
Oh god, Cecil.

V
                                                            I can’t think.

CECIL
Better idea. Get on the bleeding phone. Right now. Get on the
bleeding phone. Call bleeding Bits’. Tell her no bleeding ice,
no bleeding lemon wedge. Send their bleeding driver. Failing that.
Get down the bleeding hill to bleeding Dead bleeding Clive’s,
pick up a gallon of gin and use his bleeding phone.
Failing that—

MAVIS
                                                No. No more, CC.

V
The timer. Something’s wrong with the timer. It’s been some time.

CECIL
                                                Oh? Oh, really.

NICKY
It will have to be manual. –I don’t know how we can keep
this up. . . . We have the tapes, but . . .

CECIL
Oh, right. Quite so. You . . . are . . . quite right.

MAVIS
                                                I want to see Mary Ellen.

CECIL
                                                            Of course.

MAVIS
I miss her. . . . I miss . . . Mary Ellen.

V
Write this, please. . . . Oh, . . . but can you see to the timer?
First, please.

CECIL
I’m really very sorry, you know? . . . She is being very well
cared for, you know? . . . My love.

NICKY
                                                We have the tapes. I’ll check.

Nicky exits riser. 

MAVIS
                                                I want her with us.

CECIL
                                                Oh my.

V
(Electric shock) Oh my. . . . The growing alienation of the
labouring world, madam, from the world of concentrated surplus
value, sir, which both sustains and is sustained by it; the increasing
animosity created by the on-going attempts at organization and
re-organization across this gulf between the Developed World and
the Under-developed World, generally referred to as the rich and poor,
respectively, . . .

CECIL
Can we just do this first. Then we can talk of baby Mary.

MAVIS
                                    Mary Ellen. We’ll talk about Mary Ellen.

CECIL
Please try to get hold of Bitsy. . . . And . . . I am really quite sorry,
darling.

V
The theory of value which operates— . . . oh. . . . The . . .

MAVIS
                                                The isolation.

CECIL
                                                Isolation.

MAVIS
                                                We’re so far away. So . . .

CECIL
                                                Incredibly far, yes.

V
The . . . ory. Theo . . . ree. . . . (softly) Nicky.

MAVIS
                                       I never bargained for this.

CECIL
No bargain. No bargaining, no. . . . Molly, please.

V
(softly) Nicky. Thee . . . o . . . ree. . . . The oree . . .

MAVIS
                                                Never questioned. Never challenged you.

CECIL
Let’s not sell ourselves short here.

MAVIS
I’ve been the perfect collaborator. Servile and silent.

V
                                                Thee . . . ory . . .

CECIL
One of your moods. One of Mavis’ gin moods?

V
                                    Thee . . . ory . . . gin. The origin.

MAVIS
                                                NO! . . . Oh yes. It is.

CECIL
There’s nothing wrong . . . with . . . that. With you, my—

V
                                    Capital is self-valorizing.

MAVIS
                                    Love of might. The comfortably homeless.

CECIL
I don’t know how comfy . . . I would be much more so if we could
                         address the gin problem.


MAVIS
I haven’t the strength. To walk to Clive’s. And back up the hill.

CECIL
                                    I’m sure you’d find a lift back.

MAVIS
                                                Cecil, . . .

V
Unrestricted growth. . . . Intrinsic force.

CECIL
This congestion’s . . . the old TB’s got me where—(Big Cough)
Maybe some codeine. Tackle this cough. Any left? And those
     antibiotics you picked up in that vide grenier—where was that?

MAVIS
                            He’s probably down digging in that clubhouse of his.


CECIL
                            In Normandy. Yvestot? Gerponville? . . . How’s that?

MAVIS
                                    Just by the Jaca. The old warren.

CECIL
                                    Afraid I’m left-luggage, darling.

MAVIS
                                                It’s Nicky.

CECIL
                                                Right so.

MAVIS
You might try my Louis Vee for those codeine as well.

Mavis exits UC. 

MAVIS (Exiting)
Look there, but I think you’ve already taken all the antibiotics, CC.

CECIL
                        I see why that luggage is so dear.

Cecil finishes the cologne and exits UC. 

V
Nicky. If the boys’ club is to continue to meet . . . No, you must
tell your mother that her Avon can no longer be protected. . . .
The theory . . . theory . . . Industrial capital . . . without access to
cheap power . . . free water . . . free water . . . the little nigger
was right: the pyramids were built by levitation. (groans)
The magic subversion of labor power. . . . Franchises, Nicky.
Your mother, the Amazonian Avon lady. . . . I’m sorry, Nicky.
We haven’t the power . . . to drive . . . them out.

Nicky re-enters riser. 

NICKY
                                    Todos estao mortos. All the circuits.

V
                                                No matter.

NICKY
                                    I don’t know about the tape.


V
You must get word to your mother . . . and your cousin.
Yes, your cousin and his cousins must go to meet the Lithuanian
musician . . . Serge or Sasha or whatever . . . in Vieira Souto . . .
at his shop. Cosmetics shop. (groans) Nicky.
Cosmetics in Brazil.

NICKY
                                    What about senhor Ware? The strike?

V
He can’t have it. He’ll have to deal with these people.

NICKY
                                    What about you?

V
                        How long will it take for the power to come back? How long am I safe here?

NICKY
                        The acetone is coming down tonight again with Filipe. I can ask him for more                                batteries, but I don’t know how long it will take. These people are becoming                                     crazy. Brazil is working on them.

V
                        I can’t have this. Go on like this. I can feel myself turning to smoke, blowing away.                         . . . It might be best to end this now.

NICKY
        No. No. I can help you. We need you. They cannot have this. Take all this.

V
                        It’s hopeless, Nicky. . . . I can no longer think of anything but death. Of killing                                until there is no more life.

NICKY
                                    Hope is not the point.

NOISE is heard OS from riser. Nicky draws his squirt gun. 

MAVIS
                                    What on earth?

Mavis enters the riser. 

NICKY
                                                No.

V
                                                No!

Nicky squirts Mavis in the face. Mavis reacts in great pain.

MAVIS
                                                NO!

Mavis stumbles off riser (exits). 

V
                                                What was that?

NICKY
                                                Oh, no. My god.

Cecil enters unsteadily UC with a large bottle of mouthwash from which he drinks. 

CECIL
                                    Spritely little cocktail. Reminiscent of that mille mille coffee in Marrakesh:                                    hashish and methamphetamine washed down with Spanish brandy. . . .                                                 Well, not quite. But I’ll be kissing sweet.

V
                                                What was that?

NICKY
                                                His wife. Mavis.

CECIL
                                    Oh, darling! Still gone, are we? Ubi sunt? Ou sont les neiges d’antan?                                            Where have all the flores vamanoosed?

V
                                                What did you do?

NICKY
                                                I don’t know. I have to get her.

V
                                    Wait, Nicky. Give me something.

Nicky puts his squirt gun in one of V’s nostrils and pulls the trigger several times. He moves it to the other nostril and pulls the trigger several more times. 

V
                                    (Groans) Oh, the colors.

V’s head falls back. Nicky exits the riser. 

CECIL
                        There was a time—wasn’t there?—a time when I could get what I needed.     Easily. . . . A time when I needed nothing. . . . A time without longing, 
for which I long. . . I yearn for non-yearning. . . . I urine for . . . 
There’s his’n, there’s her’n, and the rest in urine.

Cecil goes to the glass table and takes up the trumpet. He puts it to his lips and blows a loud, ugly, long bray. He drops the trumpet, putting his hands to the sides of his head. His eyes roll up in his head, and he falls to the floor in full spasm.

NOISE is heard OS. 

MAVIS (OS)
                                    Cecil. Help me, CC.

Mavis, her hands over her face, enters UC. 

MAVIS
                                                CC. CC.

Mavis comes into the room. 

MAVIS
                                                Cecil, I’m on fire.

Mavis stumbles over Cecil’s trembling body and falls to the floor, still clutching her face. 

MAVIS
                                                Mary Ellen, help me.

Nicky enters UC and stands in door way. 


NICKY
O que exta acontecendo, Patraoes?



End Act 1



************************************ 

1 comment:

Global Hospitals Group said...


D0NATE OR SELL YOUR K1DNEYS WITH THE SUM OF 500,000.00 USD,EMAIL FOR MORE INFORMATION : EMAIL : onlinecareunit@gmail.com