Sales of a Death Man

January 23, 2016

It's a teaser this month!  Here's an excerpt from my short play that's part of the Antaeus Theater Company's Classics Redux festival.

 

SALES OF A DEATH MAN

 

Casting office. PAULA paces, talking on the phone.

 

PAULA
It was a total waste!  We saw over fifty actors and I’ve got noooooobody! 

 

Who? 

 

Yeah, she read - they said she’s not fuckable.  Yes for the Grandmother part.  It’s Hollywood, even grandmothers have to be fuckable.


 

 

WILLY LOMAN enters, wearing a rumpled, 1950s suit.  He totes a battered brief case.

 

 

PAULA
Hang on a sec - (to Willy) Auditions are over. (in phone) And you wouldn’t believe  - (to Willy) Did you hear me? Auditions are done. Go home. (in phone)  - the losers who - Uh, lemme call you back. (hangs up; to Willy) Can I help you?


WILLY
I’m Death.


PAULA
Oh.  CAN I HELP YOU?


WILLY
Not deaf. Death.


PAULA
Death?  Uh - No, you’re not because the breakdown clearly stated Death is Hispanic, and hot, and auditions for that Straight to Video Masterpiece were yesterday so Buh-Bye.


WILLY
Y’know, America is full of fine, upstanding people.  People that know me.  Up and down New England; I am known.  


PAULA
Yeah, well, this is Los Angeles.


WILLY
Exactly!  Why’s my territory California?  Where’s the logic in that?


Offstage, we hear a BELL ding!


WILLY
Damn! Miss Julie just made another sale.


He sinks into a chair, pulling a file from his brief case.


PAULA
Look - no - you can’t -


WILLY
Paula Watkins. Thirty seven years old - born in Chicago -


PAULA
You’re stalking me?! OHMYGO -


The BELL dings again. LOUD.


PAULA
What IS that?!


WILLY
You grew up in Dayton. Ohio, right?


PAULA
I’m calling security!


WILLY
You killed your sister’s goldfish.


PAULA
I - what?!


WILLY
She had more Girl Scout badges, you were jealous, you poured Clorox into her fish tank.  


PAULA
How did you - no one knows about that. No one.


WILLY
I’m Death.  Well, a representative of.  A “Death Man” if you will.  Bill Loman - maybe you’ve heard of me? 

 

No? 

 

Friends call me Willy?

 

Huh.  Surprising.  I am very well liked.


The BELL rings again.


Another one?!  Ah well - here’s the deal.  The Grim Reaper, or ‘Boss Man’ to me - and he can thank nepotism for that promotion, he is not well liked, believe you me - Boss Man passed out the new leads today and I got you.  


PAULA
Grim Reaper?! I’m - dead? No! Why?!


WILLY
Dunno why your name came up, Hon. Decisions come from Downtown. I hear it’s mostly random. Sure, sometimes they cherry pick - like Steve Jobs, when they needed I.T. support - but me?  I just take the leads, make the sale.


PAULA
Sale?  You mean you have to sell me...?


WILLY
Your death. Yes.   


PAULA
That’s easy.  Not Interested.


WILLY
Please? I need to make quota.


PAULA
What’s in it for you?


WILLY
Job security.  And maybe a set of steak knives.  


The BELL rings again.


Christ - Miss Julie’s killing me.  Look, this world?  It’s over populated.   The Boss can’t get to everyone, so he delegates. Heck, even us reps can’t get to everyone, so we offer incentives. Perks for those who “D.I.Y it” and off themselves.

 

PAULA
Wait - you want me to kill myself?  Are you crazy?!  

 

 

Want to know what happens next? 

Check out the The Antaeus Theater Co's Ten-Minute Play Festival

CLASSIC REDUX! 

February 4 – 7, 2016

http://antaeus.org/shows/classicsfest-2016/

Box office:  818.506.1983

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