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Since its beginning in January 1995, TDF's Access for Young Audiences has served over 13,000 elementary and secondary school students who are deaf or hard of hearing from 29 different schools in the New York area.


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The Gift

by Giselle Colon
The following scene was written by a student in the TDF Residency Arts Project at DeWitt Clinton High School. It explores the element of slapstick comedy as a playwriting tool.


The Gift


Characters
John: 22-year-old, male, bad-tempered
Jack: John's friend
Time: Present day, summer
Place: Jack's house in the kitchen

AT RISE:
(John has just entered Jack's house and goes to the kitchen where Jack is.)

JOHN:
Jack, I want you to do me a big favor.

JACK:
Name it! You know, we been buddies since we been little boys. And I always did favors for you. Remember the time that I let you take out my girlfriend for a walk and...

JOHN:
(Interrupts Jack.) Let's change the subject. Anyway, I bought something wonderful for my wife for her birthday and I want you to hide it till then.

JACK:
You know I'll do it! What did you get her? Huh?

JOHN:
I got her something special that is not your business.

JACK:
Oh well, how many days do I have to hold it for you?

JOHN:
Oh, only about a day or two. Promise me you won't lose it or even touch it.

The Gift
JACK:
Trust me, John, I won't lose it.

JOHN:
Are you sure? You always end up losing my stuff or messing it up.

JACK:
But this time I won't. PLEEEASE let me take care of it.

JOHN:
Okay, okay, I'll let you watch it. (Goes over to the bag to get the diamonds.) Here, promise me you will take good care of them. Promise.

JACK:
Okay, John, I promise. (Takes diamonds handed over to him by John.)

JOHN:
Hey! Watch it! Don't lose them.

JACK:
I'm just going to the sink to get a cup so I could drink. (Opens box and then says to himself.) These diamonds sure are beautiful.
The Gift
JOHN:
Okay, be very careful and remember those are very special.

JACK:
Yeah, they sure are. (Takes diamonds from box and accidentally drops one in the sink.) Uh oh!

JOHN:
What just fell in the sink? Oh God, tell me it's not the diamond earrings. (Hands on hips.)

JACK:
Not actually, it was just one of the diamond earrings.

JOHN:
(Angrily.) What?! Are you crazy?! Do you get dumber every minute?

JACK:
Actually, sometimes I wonder. (Scratches head.)

JOHN:
(Angrily.) Oh shut up! I can't believe you did this!

JACK:
I'm sorry, John, you know how clumsy I am.

JOHN:
Yeah, that's for sure! Now you got to help me get them, because these earrings are one of a kind! (Mumbles to himself angrily.)

JACK:
Look, John, I just wanted to see how beautiful they looked. Anyway, you know I'll help you, so come on, John. (Walking towards sink.)

JOHN:
Let's go then!

JACK:
You know l thought you would kill me for this but I guess you really are a very understanding guy, right, John? (Pats him on back.)

JOHN:
(Looks at him as though wanting to kill him.) Don't talk to me right now; just get the tools.

JACK:
Right away! (Skips towards cabinet.)

JOHN:
You put your tools in the cabinet?! Sheesh, what a moron!

(Jack hands over tools to John and accidentally drops them on John's foot.)

JOHN:
Oooooooooouuuuuuccccccchhhhhhh!!! (Takes injured foot, then hops around on other foot.) YOU IDIOT!!

JACK:
Sorry, did it hurt? (Goes over to him to see if he's okay.)

JOHN:
Get away from me! (Calms down.) Just let me do my work in peace!

JACK:
Sure. I'll just keep you company, I'll just stay here. Don't worry about me. (Walks around, trips on one of the tools, and falls on top of John.) That isn't good.

JOHN:
Get off! (Pushes him off and goes back to what he was doing.) Okay, let's see. (Goes under sink and starts working with the pipes.) I can't get it!

JACK:
Let me do it for you! (Takes tool and does it himself.)

The Gift
JOHN:
Give me that! (Jack doesn't let him take it and does it himself.)

JACK:
There! I did it!

JOHN:
(Surprised reaction.) You did it? YEAAAHHH! (Very excited.)

JACK:
I know, I know, I'm a genius!

JOHN:
See you later, Jack, I gotta go! Yeah, yeah! (Screaming down the hall.)

JACK:
(Screams down the hall.) You're welcome! (Jack goes back inside.)