#28PlaysLater: Day 20 – “I’ll Message You”

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Today’s challenge:

Write a play about a date in the age of digital…

As someone who has pretty much struck out 99% of the time (short termism is not just the deficit of the advertising industry or politicians) both in IRL and Online, I suffer human fatigue fairly quickly in this day and age. So yay. Dating. Though actually, this is kinda cute… though possibly a bit close to home…

Cast:

Jo

Tom

Waitress

The Play:

A pleasant, low key restaurant with strong over-tones of High Street Chain. Tom is already seated at a table for two. He has a bottle of Orangina, which he is playing with, picking the label off. When no one is looking, he unscrew the bottle and drinks the dregs at the bottom.

Waitress comes over to the table.

Waitress: Shall I take thi-

Tom: No. Thanks.

Waitress: No worries. Can I get you any nuts or olives or-

Tom: No.

Waitress: Cool. Any more drinks or-

Tom: Two oranginas. Enough. Yeah.

Waitress: Ok. I’ll come and check on you in a bit.

Pause.

Jo rushes in. When she see Tom, she pulls out her phone and references a picture of him with the real life. She then uses her phone to check her makeup. She notices a smudge, clears it up. She walks towards the table.

Jo: Tom?

Tom: Jo?

Jo: Hi.

Jo holds out her hand.

Tom: Hello.

He shakes her hand. They both stand for a moment.

Tom: Oh.

Tom scurries round the table and pulls out the chair for Jo, before scampering back round to his seat and sitting down. Jo smiles and takes the seat. She shrugs off her coat and hangs her bag over her chair.

Pause.

Jo: Hi.

Tom: Yeah. Hi.

Pause.

Waitress walks over.

Waitress: Can I take your order?

Jo: 5 please?

Waitress: yeah no worries. Drink?

Jo: You drinking?

Tom: Orangina.

Jo: Orangina, please.

Waitress: Ace. I’ll be back to take your order.

Pause.

Tom: So, you-

Jo: Yeah.

Tom: Good.

Jo: Yeah, fine.

Pause.

Tom: Ummmm-

Jo: Yes?

Tom: No. D’worry.

Jo: Ok.

Pause.

Jo: This’not-

Tom: No.

Jo holds up her mobile phone.

Jo: We could-

Tom: Yes!

Tom gets out his mobile phone. Text bubbles each appear about the others head. Including the ‘…’ typing symbols. From now on all speech is typed with the exception of the waitress.

Tom: You look beautiful

Tom: I like your hair like that

Jo: Thanks! You don’t scrub up half bad yourself

Jo: What you thinking?

Tom: From the menu?

Tom: The Carnivore and a bowl of chips

Tom: You?

Jo: Tag Tel

Jo: I’ll steal your chip 😉

Tom: Cheeky 😉

Jo: How’s your mum?

Tom: She says hi!

Tom: Said it was nice to meet you on FaceTime the other day

Tom: She can’t wait to meet you IRL

Tom: We should send her a pic

Jo: Great idea

Tom holds up his phone, while he and Jo pose smiling at the camera.

Waitress arrives with a tray with the Orangina on it.

Waitress: Made a decision yet?

Both Tom and Jo look at her, wide eyed.

Waitress: I’ll give you a bit more time.

Tom sends photo to his mum. 

Tom: Mum. Here you go.

Tom: Me and Jo.

Mum: Ooooo that’s lovely. You two look great together. I’ll start shopping for wedding hats 😉 Love mum xoxo

Mum: PS hi Jo! Love mum xoxo

Jo: You’re mum is so cute.

Tom: She’s alright.

Tom: A bit mad but aren’t we all.

Jo: Not my parents.

Tom: God yes. No one wants to date the spawn of accounts 😛

Jo: Shut up

Jo: Not accountants

Jo: Financial analysts 😛

Tom: That’s so much better 😛

Jo: ROFL

Tom: Liar

Jo throws herself off her chair and rolls on the ground miming laughing. The Waitress walks in, sees what going on, rolls her eyes and walks away again.

Tom: You’re mental you are

Jo: One of my better characteristics

Jo: Well that and my tits

Tom: O_O

Jo: That’s why they call me tit mcgee

Tom: Who do?

Jo: They

Tom: Who they

Jo: The man

Tom: Capitalism calls you tits mcgee?

Jo: Neoliberalism actually

Tom: smart arse

Jo: that’s pretty good too

Tom: You’d slap me if I’d made that joke

Jo: my arse my joke

Jo: Make a joke about your own arse

Tom: do you know i’m actually a cigarette

Jo: what?

Tom: I got a hot butt

Jo: that awful lol

Tom: you’re welcome

Jo: You know what you said the other day… did you mean it?

Tom: That i love you… yes…

Jo: Even though we-

Back to normal speech.

Jo: No!

Tom: What’s wrong?

Jo: Battery died.

Tom: Y’ok?

Jo: I need to go home. Charge it.

Tom: Course.

Jo grabs her coat and bag from the chair.

Jo: Thanks.

Tom: S’ok.

Jo starts to leave. She turns and smiles.

Jo: Message you later.

Jo runs out of the restaurant. Tom sits and beams to himself. Waitress walks over.

Waitress: So what would you like to order?

Tom: Just bill. Please.

Blackout.

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