A play by Sean Keane
AHMED: (on other end of line) Hi. This is Ahmed.
AHMED: Um, Ahmed. From Cal...
GLORIA: Oh, right. (Pause)
AHMED: Anyway, it's Sunday today, and I thought you might want to have lunch...
GLORIA: Ahmed, can I be honest with you? This is odd.
AHMED: I see. I just thought that...well, this was a mistake.
(Phone rings. Ahmed wakes, sits up in bed. Answering machine picks up.)
AHMED: (on tape) Hello, you've reached 649-9974. Please leave your name, number, and a brief yet thorough message, and I'll call you back. (Beep.)
SEAN: (on tape) Hi, Ahmed. This is Sean, and I'm calling from New York. I don't know if you realize it or not, but Sunday is just two days away. You have to call Gloria for lunch, remember? I don't know about you, but I think this is odd.
(Ahmed writes "Sunday" on his left arm.)
(Brendan is sitting with his entire mouth around the top of a wine glass.)
SEAN: (to Brendan) With every subsequent moment that passes, my life becomes increasingly surreal. I don't know if I'm going crazy, or if the world truly is changing. Plus, the border between "funny" and "sad" is growing more and more blurry...half of the time, I can't tell whether I should be laughing at everything I see or hear, or if I should just be constantly crying. Maybe I just need more sleep.
BRENDAN: I really like sorority girls.
SUSANNA: For the last time, I'm Portuguese. Portuguese, dammit!
SEAN: Every moment.
(A piece of bread from offstage bounces off of Brendan's forehead. He covers his face effeminately.)
SEAN: Get a hold of yourself, Jerk McGirk!
(The phone rings. Gloria wakes, sits up, and picks up the phone)
GLORIA: Hello? Hello? Hello? (She hangs up.) How odd.
(Gloria distractedly scrawls "Baja Fresh" on her arm.)
(Answering machine tape is running)
SEAN: (on tape) ...so, later today, you're going to call her, and be worried about her reaction and everything, and no matter what she says, you're going to be obsessed with how odd the whole situation is. Try to focus. Concentrate on the lunch, on romance. It's the only way. That being said, the whole thing is pretty weird.
("I Saw Her Standing There" plays in the background. Ahmed is dialing.)
GLORIA: (on other end of call) Hello?
AHMED: Hello, may I speak to Gloria?
GLORIA: This is Gloria. Is this Ahmed? I was hoping you'd call.
AHMED: Yes, this is Ahmed...Would you like to have lunch today? Maybe at Baja Fresh?
GLORIA: Ahmed, I would love to. Can you pick me up at 12:30?
AHMED: All that and more is taken care of, my darling. Your chariot will await.
(A phone rings. Sean wakes, sits up on the couch, and picks up the phone.)
SEAN: Hello? Hello? No, there's no Paul here. I think you have the wrong number.
(Sean hangs up, and writes "Curiouser and curiouser" on his arm. He glances at the coffee table, and sees a champagne cork. Holding the cork, Sean picks up the phone and dials.)
SEAN: Hello, is Ahmed there? Oh, right, he's at lunch. OK, just tell him that McGirk called. Thanks.
(Sean picks up a half-full glass of flat champagne in front of him, and downs it. He lays back down on the couch to go to sleep, and knocks the receiver off its cradle. As "If you'd like to make a call..." emanates from the phone, the curtain falls.)