Wednesday, 20 July 2011
Giraffes - Act Two, Scene Eight.
This isn't going to make much sense unless you start at the beginning - Giraffes - Act One, Scene One.
(The next morning. Simon and Anna at table. Enter Kirsty, the worse for wear.)
KIRSTY. Owwwwwh Godd! Sorry, you're not going to get much out of me this morning.
ANNA. Oh we prepared for that.
(Anna points to a large glass of something lurid and cloudy, held by Simon.)
KIRSTY. What is that?
ANNA. I wouldn't ask if I was you.
SIMON. Take it. Close your eyes if you don't like the look of it. Now I want you to be brave and drink it all without coming up for air.
KIRSTY. I can't drink that!
SIMON. Do you want to carry on feeling like you do now?
KIRSTY. Uh uh.
(Kirsty looks at the glass with disgust, then downs it anyway. For at least the first fifteen seconds after finishing it she looks worse than she did before, on the verge of throwing up. Simon is unpeturbed by this. Anna is amused. Kirsty starts to shake vigorously, then stteps up in the glow of health.)
SIMON. I do have my uses.
KIRSTY. That was fantastic! What is it made out of?
SIMON. Trade secret.
KIRSTY. Where did you get it from?
SIMON. My grandfather used to own a bar.
ANNA. Can you remember last night?
KIRSTY. Yes. We were talking about what we wanted to do when we grow up.
ANNA. And after that?
KIRSTY. We drank a toast to life.
ANNA. And after that?
KIRSTY. We decided to open another bottle. Then... oh.
ANNA. You keeled over.
KIRSTY. Did I?
SIMON. We had to carry you into bed.
KIRSTY. I don't remember that.
ANNA. I'm not surprised.
KIRSTY. Was I asleep?
ANNA. No. You were very talkative, in fact.
KIRSTY. What was I talking about?
ANNA. Don't worry. You were quite sweet really. I had to undress you.
KIRSTY. What did you do once I was in bed?
ANNA. Me? I went to sleep. Simon did the washing up and mopped the floor.
KIRSTY. Mopped the floor?
ANNA. Yes, he had to.
KIRSTY. (Cautiously) Why?
ANNA. You -
SIMON. What do you fancy eating today?
KIRSTY. Oh. Anything.
ANNA. What would you like to cook?
SIMON. I think that the time has come for me to make my famous gazpacho.
SIMON. Yes. Is there anything else that you want?
SIMON. I'll go shopping then.
KIRSTY. I'll do it for you.
SIMON. It's no trouble.
KIRSTY. No I'd like to. The sea air will do me good.
ANNA. Okay. You're sure that you know the way?
KIRSTY. Ur yes.
KIRSTY. Well I think so.
SIMON. Shall I draw you a map?
KIRSTY. No. It'll be an adventure.
SIMON. If you're sure.
KIRSTY. Yes. Yes I am.
KIRSTY. Think that I might be on my way now, actually.
(She makes to exit, swiftly but clumsily.)
ANNA. Hold on.
KIRSTY. No I'd like to get it done now.
KIRSTY. Oh yes. Silly me.
(Anna gives her some money and looks expectantly at Kirsty. Kirsty looks nonplussed at Anna. Anna pecks Kirsty's cheek. Kirsty is embarrassed to have forgotten. She exits.)
SIMON. It's nice to know that I was of some use to her.
ANNA. You've already said that.
ANNA. It's alright.
ANNA. I'm sorry Simon.
SIMON. What for?
ANNA. I kept on saying that we were going away to talk. Its our last day here now and I find that I still haven't said a word to you.
SIMON. That's okay. You were right to do this. I have learned something.
ANNA. What's that?
SIMON. That there's nothing terribly mysterious about Kirsty. That I do know you well. I feel much better for us doing this.
ANNA. That's good.
SIMON. Don't you?
ANNA. I feel very much the same as before we came here. I suspect that Kirsty might be feeling worse, though.
SIMON. Yes. I think that -
ANNA. Is that why you feel better? Her feeling worse?
SIMON. Now would I -
ANNA. No of course you wouldn't. Sorry.
SIMON. That's okay.
SIMON. Anyway, she might be like this all the time for all I know. I'd never met her before this week, remember?
ANNA. Yes, I know. Sorry
SIMON. It's alright. It's more difficult for her though, isn't it?
SIMON. We know each other better.
ANNA. I know Kirsty very well.
SIMON. I'm not saying that you don't. Just that... Well, you haven't been here with her before.
ANNA. Is that the only difference?
SIMON. No. We've spent great slices of our lives together when... I hope... we've known each other well.
SIMON. Haven't we?
ANNA. I know you very well, Simon.
SIMON. I hope that I know you well too.
SIMON. When I first met you I was instantly aware that you had...
ANNA. Hidden depths?
SIMON. Not quite. A big secret sapce that you wouldn't share with anyone else. Not out of contrariness, but because no-one could understand you when you were there.
ANNA. Planet Anna, you used to call it.
SIMON. Used to? When did I stop?
ANNA. You haven't used the expression for a couple of years.
SIMON. I've got complacent. I must have forgotten how unknowable you can be.
ANNA. You know me better than anyone else, Simon.
SIMON. Impertinent and unfair question, I know, but: Better than her?
SIMON. Sorry. You don't have to answer that.
ANNA. You and Kirsty both know me well. Just in very different ways.
SIMON. And have you always wanted someone like Kirsty, in all the time that we've been together?
ANNA. Don't pussyfoot around like that, Simon. You don't mean "Someone like Kirsty", you mean a woman.
SIMON. However I phrased that question, it was always going to come out wrong. It's the answer that's important.
ANNA. I'd forgotten, really. Just the occasional flutter. No action.
ANNA. I never planned on there being anyone other than you. That's all that matters.
SIMON. What about before we met?
ANNA. I had no intention of living the life that I eventually did.
ANNA. Then again, I had no specific intentions at all at the time. Or at any time of my life, come to that. But I never expected to end up with a man.
SIMON. So why did you?
ANNA. Because he was you, Simon.
SIMON. Should I thank you?
ANNA. If you feel that I deserve your thanks.
SIMON. Then thank you. Why me?
ANNA. Because I'd never met anyone like you before. Because you were very sincere. Because I was touched that anyone could be filled with so much love for me.
SIMON. But you didn't fancy me?
SIMON. But you learned to with time?
ANNA. I love you. I trust you. I've never resented you.
SIMON. But I thought that you enjoyed it when we're together.
ANNA. You mean fucking.
SIMON. If you like.
ANNA. It's reassuring. It fills me with pleasure. But it's not sexual.
SIMON. Of course it is!
SIMON. It is for me, anyway.
ANNA. Is it?
SIMON. Yes. What do you mean by that?
ANNA. I'm not sure that I can put it into words.
ANNA. Not vigorous. Never aggressive.
SIMON. A bantamweight fuck.
ANNA. No! Don't put yourself down. A hug with a penis.
SIMON. I'm not a penis.
ANNA. An embrace that features a penis, sorry.
ANNA. I do like it.
SIMON. Because I'm not vigorous or aggressive?
SIMON. Is she?
SIMON. Is that why....
ANNA. Not telling.
ANNA. Is that why what, anyway?
SIMON. Not telling. Why would anyone want to be aggressive if they loved someone?
ANNA. Sweet Simon. You really don't know, do you?
SIMON. No, I don't!
ANNA. You're getting aggressive now!
ANNA. Show me aggression.
ANNA. Would you like...
ANNA. Go on. Be a tiger!
SIMON. But I'm not a tiger!
ANNA. What are you then?
SIMON. I don't know. A camel? A giraffe?
ANNA. Did you know that giraffes can't speak?
SIMON. No I didn't. Well I never.
ANNA. What am I?
ANNA. No. What animal?
ANNA. You're not very passionate, are you?
SIMON. I thought that was why you liked me.
ANNA. Go on.
ANNA. I want to see what you're like.
ANNA. We could go to the beach.
SIMON. Because it's not fair.
SIMON. It's not fair to Kirsty. She needs to sleep with you more than I do.
ANNA. Don't be so reasonable.
SIMON. Okay. It's not fair on me, either.
SIMON. You can't expect me to change after so many years. Especially when I haven't done anything wrong.
ANNA. Don't be so.... certain.
SIMON. Okay. Most importantly, it's not fair on you.
SIMON. Because you don't really want to.
ANNA. Yes, I do.
SIMON. This moment, perhaps. But you don't need to, and it wouldn't do any of us any good.
ANNA. If you say so.
SIMON. I do.
ANNA. But don't you need to?
SIMON. I need to love you.
SIMON. I need to be loved by you. I don't need to have sex with you for that.
SIMON. Don't ever leave. That's all. Don't leave.
ANNA. I won't.
ANNA. We're a curious couple, aren't we?
SIMON. We are. But we are a couple.
ANNA. A pair.
SIMON. A duo.
ANNA. A twosome.
(Simon ruffles Anna's hair.)
SIMON. Silly mare.
ANNA. Is that my animal?
Next - Giraffes - Act Two, Scene Nine.