SUBMERGE 5'?m2f Denial, depression, confession, recovery

AMY -- (enters carrying bucket half full of water and a 
hand-towel over shoulder) Twenty bucks.

LIZ -- (enters with Amy) Twenty bucks?

AMY -- Yup. Twenty bucks.

LIZ -- What do I have to do to earn twenty bucks?

AMY -- (sets bucket on bar stool or pedestal) Submerge all four
of these tennis balls. (points into bucket)

LIZ -- (looks suspiciously into bucket) These four balls?

AMY -- Yes.

LIZ -- Submerge all four.

AMY -- Yes.

LIZ -- Hold them under water.

AMY -- Yes.

LIZ -- For twenty bucks.

AMY -- Yes.

LIZ -- (pushes up sleeves) I can do that.

AMY -- But you can use only one hand.

LIZ -- (looks suspiciously into bucket, and repeatedly at Amy)
Alright, I can do that. (reaches toward bucket)

AMY -- AND! You have to hold all four balls underwater for
twenty minutes.

LIZ -- (freezes) How many conditions are you going to impose on

AMY -- That's it.

LIZ -- Four balls, under water, one hand, twenty minutes, twenty

AMY -- That's it.

LIZ -- That's a buck a minute.

AMY -- Yes.

LIZ -- I can do that.

AMY -- (looks at watch) Good. Ready. Set.

LIZ -- No tricks?

AMY -- No tricks.

LIZ -- The water is not freezing cold or mixed with acid or....

AMY -- No. No tricks. Four balls, under water, one hand, twenty
minutes, twenty bucks.

LIZ -- Okay. (submerges hand to bottom of bucket) Well, that was
easy! I guess it pays to have long fingers! (pauses) I should
have brought my walkman. The time will pass faster if I can
listen to some tunes. Will you go get my walkman?

AMY -- No.

LIZ -- Why not?!

AMY -- You don't need to shut yourself off from the outside
world with loud music in order to pass the time.

LIZ -- What about television?! I have a thirteen inch TV (points
offstage) in the...

AMY -- No.

LIZ -- You're really mean!

AMY -- Can't you just pass the time by talking to me?

LIZ -- I know what this is about!

AMY -- What's that?

LIZ -- The only way you can get people to talk to you is to pay
them twenty bucks!

AMY -- That's very funny. But it's not true.

LIZ -- Then, what do you want to talk about?

AMY -- Let's talk about what it's like to keep four tennis balls
submerged with one hand for twenty minutes.

LIZ -- Actually, as time passes, it doesn't seem to be as easy
as I thought it was going to be.

AMY -- Why is that? Are you becoming uncomfortable?

LIZ -- Well, not yet, but, I can see that if I don't keep
concentrating on keeping the balls submerged, it wouldn't take
much for one of them to float to the surface.

AMY -- So, what you're saying is that it takes a lot of
conscious effort to keep things submerged.

LIZ -- (looks repeatedly to Amy, then to bucket) There's no
trick to this! Why am I doing this?!

AMY -- For twenty bucks.

LIZ -- If this was a practical joke, you would have sprung the
punch line on me already.

AMY -- This is no joke.

LIZ -- Maybe not. But it's something. What is it?

AMY -- (points to bucket) Is it tiring trying to keep all those
things submerged for a long time?

LIZ -- You wouldn't think so, but it really is tiring. I mean,
it doesn't hurt or anything. I'm not getting cramps. It's kind
of a mental thing, just concentrating on keeping things just
right to keep them submerged.... Who have you been talking to?

AMY -- What do you mean?

LIZ -- I mean, are people saying things about me?

AMY -- Only everybody who knows you.

LIZ -- What are they saying?!

AMY -- I think you already know what they're saying. (points to

LIZ -- (looks into bucket, tearfully) They're talking about the
rape, aren't they?

AMY -- They are. But you aren't.

LIZ -- I don't want to talk about it!

AMY -- I know. Have you noticed how tiring it is to keep it

LIZ -- (turns away) I don't want to talk about it!

AMY -- You don't have to talk about the rape. Talk to me about
the concentration it takes to keep it submerged. Talk to me
about all the conversations you've ended prematurely so that you
could avoid even a chance of confrontation about it. Talk to me
about all the times you refused invitations, all the nights you
spent alone so there wouldn't be even a chance that the topic
would come bobbing to the surface. Talk to me about blasting
yourself with loud music and television so the thoughts and
feelings won't float to the surface.

LIZ -- I don't want to do this anymore.

AMY -- (pulls money from pocket) Fine, here's twenty bucks. You

LIZ -- No. I mean I don't want to keep it submerged anymore.
(pulls hand from bucket) I'm tired of being tired all the time
because I spend so much of my energy pushing things down. I'm
tired of pushing people away so they won't talk about it. I'm
tired of denial and I'm tired of denying my denial. It's too
tiring. I don't have any energy left. I was afraid that if I
started crying about it, I wouldn't be able to stop. Will you
cry with me?

AMY -- (offers hand towel to Liz, exits with arm around Liz) I'd
love to. It's good to have you back.

�2013 Bob Snook. Conditions for use:
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