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SILENCE. Pitch blackness. Animal eyes begin to glow in the
darkness. Sounds of the jungle climax in animals fighting.
A SINGER is heard singing the first bars of "All God's
Chillun Got Shoes." HAROLD, LOOSELEAF, PENELOPE, and WOODLY
stand in a row in the darkness, facing the audience. They
are motionless. A city skyline in the early evening
materializes outside the windows.
The lights come up on the living room of a rich man's
apartment, which is densely furnished with trophies of hunts
and wars. There is a front door, a door to the master
bedroom suite, and a corridor leading to other bedrooms, the
kitchen and so on.
How do you do. My name is Penelope
Ryan. This is a simple-minded play
about men who enjoy killing--and
those who don't.
I am Harold Ryan, her husband. I
have killed perhaps two hundred men
in wars of various sorts--as a
professional soldier. I have
killed thousands of other animals
as well--for sport.
I am Dr. Norbert Woodly--a
physician, a healer. I find it
disgusting and frightening that a
killer should be a respected member
of society. Gentleness must
replace violence everywhere, or we
Would you like to say something
about killing, Colonel?
Jesus--I dunno. You know. What
the heck. Who knows?
Colonel Harper, retired now,
dropped an atom bomb on Nagasaki
during the Second World War,
killing seventy-four thousand
people in a flash.
I dunno, boy.
You don't know?
It was a bitch.
You can leave now. We'll begin.
(to the audience,
making a peace sign)
All but PENELOPE exit.
(to the audience)
This is a tragedy. When it's done,
my face will be as white as the
snows of Kilimanjaro.
My husband, who kills so much, has
been missing for eight years. He
disappeared in a light plane over
the Amazon Rain Forest, where he
hoped to find diamonds as big as
cantaloupes. His pilot was Colonel
Looseleaf Harper, who dropped the
bomb on Nagasaki.
I should explain the doorbells in
this apartment. They were built by
Abercrombie and Fitch. They are
actual recordings of animal cries.
The back doorbell is a hyena, which
you've just heard. The front
doorbell is a lion's roar.
(to the wings)
Would you let them hear it please?
PAUL, her twelve-year-old son, enters from corridor, a
sensitive, neatly dressed little rich boys.
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"Happy Birthday, Wanda June" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2017. Web. 20 Aug. 2017. <http://www.scripts.com/script/happy_birthday,_wanda_june_473>.