ACT 1- REALITY
Scene 1- No Need For Remorse
[6:00pm: The after work rush still commands traffic, even on a Wednesday night. The fluorescent lights cast neon striped shadows on the black polished tables. The bar is lined with baby boomers, cougars, and young professionals all trying to achieve their own social distraction. The mellow coffeehouse??? rock provides a fitting background soundtrack to the smoke tainted conversations around the bar. The parameter of the establishment is lined with longer tables to accommodate larger parties and food service. A collection of generic black suits huddle around empty pint glasses, and sauce stained wax paper baskets. They are all engaged in pleasant conversation laughing, drinking, and interjecting in frivolous staged arguments. Sidd listens to the playful banter keeping his hands folded in front of him smiling Sidd listens intently, and does not interject.]
ROB: I still don't get how you can look at me with a straight face, and say something that fucking retarded. I mean, that's not even regular retarded it's almost a super power, like you were hit with a retard meteor, and spreading retardation became your destiny.
MATT: Since when was it a crime to hate the Beatles?! I'm allowed not to like the Beatles.
ROB: You're entitled to your opinion but--
MATT: And my opinion is that--
MATT: Is that they are okay at best.
ROB: But, some things are opinion and some things are established fact. The Beatles--
MATT: They're lyrics were pretentious and stupid. And--
ROB: It is fact that they were the first band to--
MATT: Aaaaand. And, and they weren't that groundbreaking musically. People were--
ROB: Look at the sales, that's a fact. Numbers. And how many people cite their influence.
MATT: Sales. [Scoffs.] Look at the meaningless crap that's outsold them since.
MATT: Is that what they've influenced?
ROB: That's also your opinion. So go ahead and be wrong.
[A round of amber coated shot glasses in a cold sweat on the table wait for someone to take notice. (Coworker 1) grabs one triumphantly, and thrusts it towards the middle of the group.
ROB: To The Beatles! [Takes his shot.]
MATT: Up your ass!
The others follow suit downing the stinging liquid, and let loose a collective sound of satisfaction. ROB looks past his co-workers across the room and with eye contact and a head nod alone orders another round of shots. His attention has not been shifted.
ROB: Look. Where would music be? Where would we be musically without the Beatles?
MATT: Oh, it's this. Look out Sidd, it's his ace up the sleeve.
SIDD humors the debate with an audible chuckle, but remains silent.
MATT: The Beatles did not evolve music, they were a part of evolution, cranking out old Motown covers.
ROB: Motown! Look. Anyway. That's where we would still be. People churning out meaningless songs and covering old Buddy Holly numbers. That's where we would be.
MATT: So now you're going to go all It's a Wonderful Life on us. None of us would exist if the Beatles didn't.
ROB: Look. All I know is--
MATT (drunkenly, to the whole bar): Merry Christmas, Building And Loan!
ROB: I'm just saying, we would be--
MATT: Ah! Stop forcing your opinions on us. Someone else would've come along. (throws a neighborly arm around SIDD and grins widely).
ROB: Fuck off. Sidd (Pokes him.) Weigh in here. Tell this guy he's completely abnormal. What do you think? You like the Beatles, right?
SIDD (unprepared): Well. Music really just exists to bring people together. It's not for me to judge any musician.
ROB: I was just asking if you like--
MATT: Fuck sake Rob! Let it go. Sidd's just being polite. No one likes the Beatles anymore.
SIDD: That's not quite true. I think that all music has its merit, as far as any music can have merit in the entire experience of our lives.
ROB and MATT regard each other with suspicious concern as SIDD looks down at the table momentarily.
ROB: Hey Sidd. Are you alright?
SIDD: Yeah. I'm good.
MATT: No, Sidd. You've been a little weird tonight. Really quiet. Are you feeling okay?
SIDD: Sure, thanks.
ROB and MATT make wide, prodding eyes at each other, both hesitant to take the lead on the following line of questioning. While one talks, the other steadily consumes his beer.
ROB: Well, Sidd. Look. (Shaking off his alcohol buzz to become serious). We sorta found out your Mom died--uh, I mean passed away--like, a couple weeks ago. Are you doing okay with that?
SIDD (confused): Oh--
MATT: Yeah, Anna said it came up when you guys went out. Is that even right?
SIDD (Flatly): Yeah.
ROB: But when?
SIDD: About two months ago. It's--
ROB and MATT: I'm so sorry. Yeah.
ROB (To the bar): Can we get those shots?
SIDD: Well, I appreciate it. It's not--
ROB: But it's not like you missed anytime.
MATT: Yeah, you know bereavement leave isn't taken out of vacation time. It's sep--
ROB: And you didn't mention it to us. You just come in the workstation like everything's normal.
SIDD: Everything is normal.
ROB: Not really. Your Mom died.
SIDD: It does happen every day.
MATT: How many moms do you have?
SIDD (laughs): No, no. People die. That happens every day.
MATT: Yeah, but--You know, you can be sad, we won't rag on you about it. It was your Mom.
ROB: Where are those Shots!
SIDD: Moms die, too.
MATT: That's creepy, man. Did you hate her?
SIDD(forced to explain): No, no. Not at all. My mom was a great woman! And I loved her. She did so much for me throughout my life. She was sick. Years of smoking will always catch up to you (Looks around to confirm that there's no one smoking around him. It is a no-smoking establishment, though.) We knew it was coming for a long time and what would one more day of her suffering do for anyone? It's really not that big of a deal. Thanks, though.
ROB: Aw, Sidd, I didn't mean to …
SIDD: Don't think--don't worry about it. You didn't do anything you didn't mean to.
The second round of shots finally arrives and the glasses hit the table with a moist bang.
MATT (takes a glass): My turn. To Sidd's Mom--uhh…
SIDD (laughs): I gotta get going. Thanks, though.
ROB: Come on. (Lifts glass.)
SIDD: No, no. I have to be up and in early tomorrow.
MATT: For what? It's Saturday! What's going on?
SIDD turns to leave.
ROB: So Sidd, we'll still see you on Sunday, right?
SIDD: Definitely. Still 4 O clock?
ROB: Yup…so…You sure you're okay?
SIDD: Yes. Cheers, guys. Thanks. Bye.
Leaving, he hears MATT.
MATT (Indignant): You've never seen It's A Wonderful Life!!!