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“BREAKING THE RULES”
by OPOVV, ©2013
(Sep. 23, 2013) — Act 1
Typical office setting with rows of cubicles, people sitting at their desks on the computer and/or phones. A mixed group of five is gathered at the water cooler. Lights are bright, everyone is cheerful and smiling. Bright-colored dresses and shirts.
Joan: Let’s go out for lunch today.
Ted: I’m game. If we leave now we should be able to get back before one.
Mary: Where’re we going?
Dave: Some gun-free zone, that’s for sure.
Joan: If that’s the case, let’s have Nancy join us.
Ted: What do you mean, “If that’s the case”?
Joan: Because she has a conceal-carry permit, that’s why. And I’m going to get one, too.
Ted: You mean this Nancy has a gun? Now?
Joan: Conceal-carry means she has a gun in her purse. Where’ve you been?
Ted: This office, this whole building is a gun-free zone, that’s why. Why, someone should report her.
Mary: Don’t be an jerk, Ted. Joan, get Mary and let’s go somewhere.
Back at the water cooler, the normal office hum is absent. Lights are dim. Everyone is dressed exactly the same: black slacks and grey long-sleeved shirts. No jewelry flashing. Hair is short.
Joan: That’s what I said: someone turned her in.
Dave: Look, she was breaking the rules.
Joan: Whose rules? Not my rules. Rules made up by someone in corporate, who doesn’t even know what it’s like down here in the trenches. No idea.
Ted: Well, I feel safer, that’s for sure.
Joan: That’s because you’re an idiot, Ted.
Mary: I agree with Joan. When we all had to work late, I always walked out into the parking lot with Nancy, and a lot of the other girls did, too.
Ted: That’s why we have security.
Mary: Security? You mean those cop-wanna-bes who sit at the front desk drinking coffee and eating donuts? You mean as soon as the Big Bosses leave they prop their feet up on the desk and don’t move until their shift is over, is that who you mean? Is that the “security” you’re talking about? Because if it is, I’d take Nancy over all the security in the building. Look, Ted and Dave, I know you think the world is s safe and nice place, but I got a clue for you: the USA is part of the world. Think about it. And one more thing: if I ever find out who turned Nancy in, they’ll get what’s coming to them.
A group is in Joan’s cubicle, the closest to the water cooler. The lights are all out on the stage except for a spotlight above the cubicle. The clothes and hair are as in Act 1.
Joan: All I’m saying is that you, and you alone, are ultimately responsible for your safety.
Ted: Look, bottom line: Dave was at the wrong place at the wrong time, that’s all it was, just dumb luck.
Mary: Is that what you call it? So you go to the mall and get killed, and they’re not even saying who killed him. It could’ve been the bad guys in masks or the bad guys in uniform.
Ted: Hey, hold up there. I’m not going to let you badmouth our Men in Blue.
Mary: Oh, yeah? We hire marginal Neanderthals who don’t know zip about the Constitution. They beat up people and kill them and violate their rights, the very rights we’ve hired them to protect, and then when they mess up they don’t get fired, so there you have it. A broken system that has no mechanism in place to fix it when it’s broken, and broken it is.
Ted: I disagree. We’re still the greatest country on earth.
Joan: Wake up, Ted. We’ve an al Qaeda lover as our de facto president; we’re equal to teenage pregnancies with African countries; our high school graduates can’t read or write and score at the bottom of the list compared to other countries when it comes to every subject under the sun, except on “How to Game the System”; our babies die more often than any other developed country; our troops are nothing but targets for Muslims; and we still refer to Islam as some sort of “peaceful religion” when all Muslims do is kill us. No, you take the blinders off, Ted, and watch as the “Hope and Change” is destroying your beloved country. And that’s the joke, Ted: You don’t get it. And you know what the sad part of the whole thing is? You never will get it, you’ll never realize that Obama is nothing more than a big lie, and you thought you were so proper and prim and “Look at me, I’m a Liberal and I care.” No, what you are, Ted, is nothing but a traitor to your country. You turned in Nancy to Human Resources. You got Nancy fired and now she’s having a hard time finding work because she “fails to follow standard company policy.” I hope you choke on it, you and your “gun-free” nonsense.