Elder daughter Laura has left her husband, Joey, and returned to her family’s decrepit home. At night, she calls Joey, begging him to come and get her, swearing her profound love. However, when Joey arrives the next morning, Laura denies having called him and rejects him coldly. Joey is confounded by the family’s odd behavior. He is convinced there is an explanation for the contradictions he sees in Laura and her family, and he loves Laura enough not to let her drive him away. But just as he is on the verge of uncovering the mystery of the sleepwalking, Laura delivers her final blow. She claims to have slept with another man. Hurt and saddened, Joey leaves at last.
Meanwhile, sullen, sarcastic father Boyd (at night a mournful, loving man), driven to distraction by his wife’s empty-headed silliness, makes an unwitting contract with his friend, the sinister Evan, to have Grace killed. Horrified by what he has put in motion, Boyd must now decide whether to pay Evan to commit this murder or find some way to break the agreement.
Screen adaptation currently in pre-production.
- Female: 3
- Male: 3
- Total roles: 6
- The father, 50’s-60’s, gruff on the outside, heartbroke on the inside.
- The mother, 50’s – 60’s, silly on the outside, full on rage on the inside.
- The elder daughter, 20’s – early 30’s, cold on the outside, loving and warm on the inside.
- The younger daughter, late teens, a sexy flirt on the outside, terrified on the inside.
- Laura’s husband, early 30’s, an honest man.
- Boyd’s friend, 60’s, a dishonest man.
Setting & Set Requirements
The kitchen and living room of Boyd’s and Grace’s lower middle class, middle American home. Formerly cozy, now in decline. A second story landing is preferable but not necessary. There must be a refrigerator in the kitchen.
- 1993 – Critics’ Choice, Los Angeles Times for production by Road Theater Ensemble, North Hollywood, CA 1993
- 1993 – Valley Theater League’s Best Original Comedy Award, same production
- 1991 – Finalist, South Coast Rep Playwrighting Award, CA
- 2018 – 2Cents Theater, CA
- 2007 – No Strings Theater, NM
- 1993 – Road Theater Company, CA
Laura: I don’t know what it is. No one could ask for a nicer, a gentler man. You approach me with that lovestruck smile, your arms out and your eyes sparkling, so sweet. And each time, there rises in my throat such a string of invectives, I have to bite my tongue bloody to keep it back. You would be shocked, in fact you would be frightened, if you knew what occurs to me to say to you. How can I hold these thoughts and my love for you at the same time? I’ll have to squeeze myself down, smaller and smaller, so that there’s only room for how I love Joey, how I love Joey, how I love Joey. Something about you turns me monstrous. The more you show me that soft white belly, the more I want to feed it to the neighbor’s dog.