Below and in subsequent entries are part of the script of the Pure Shmint play “Vibram Soul” and links to audio files from tapes of the play, as well as one to part of a rehearsal.
The script is incomplete at this time, though I plan to transcribe as much as I can of the rest of it from my original field tapes of the performance and rehearsals.
The sound quality leaves much to be desired, since I had only the cheapest of equipment. It varies throughout, but it is possible to get a sense of the play and the response of the audience even though there are sections where the actual lines cannot be made out. I find that its more audible in general with headphones. There is also overlap between the second link and the third link, so the last few minutes of the second link which are inaudible are repeated in the third link more audibly. (I taped the first half of one performance and the second half of another, for some reason.) In the last blog entry with the script, I have posted two links to tapes of the play actually being created at various rehearsals, to present the process by which the play was generated. It takes a while to load the audio files, be patient.
Unfortunately, as far as I can tell, you can’t look at the script and hear the audio file at the same time, unless you know something I don’t. That would be my recommendation if it could be done, with the caveat that no script I ever came up with reflected any performance or rehearsal word for word, since this is improvisational drama and the actors always varied the lines slightly. There is at least one place where a lengthy section is moved to a later position in the performance than it appears in this script. If you were really, really into it, I suppose you could download or print the script to read while listening to the tapes.
Oh, and be informed that the dialog does not start until after a long musical sequence which is the dance number that opens the play. You could fast forward through that. Other such musical sequences accompanying dance numbers show up later on as well.
written and played by members of Pure Shmint, preserved for posterity by Jentri Anders
ACT I, Scene 1
(On a darkened stage, principals join hands and chant “Om.” Life, Death, and Prana join them. All chant Om. Principals exit leaving Life, Death, and Prana. Lights come up revealing Death with a drum. In the ensuing dance Death plays the drum, Prana and Life enter, Prana attempts to steal the drum, finally succeeds. Life hides behind him. Death steals it back. Life drags Prana offstage. Death dances alone with the drum.
Life comes back in. Death approaches Life, they dance a pas de deux. Prana sneaks back in, steals the drum, which has been left to one side. Life and Death approach Prana. He hesitates, then the three of them together carry the drum offstage and re-enter, having exchanged it for Jack. Life, Death and Prana exit, leaving Jack center stage playing harmonica.)
(Jack, without the harmonica, just so you can visualize what he looks like while reading his lines.)
Larry: to tell you the truth, Jack, cars and women, I can’t make it with either of them out here. Hey, Jack, hey, Jack, are you listening?
Jack: Yeah, yeah, I’m listening, Larry. You say you can’t make it with a car, right?
Larry: Yeah, I don’t know why I came out here. I don’t know why I left the city. Ever since I came to this place, I’ve had nothing but trouble. Take this morning, for instance. I had to do my laundry, but when I got to my car, I found it buried in three feet of mud. It took me over an hour to dig it out. Then I realized that it wasn’t even my car. Well, I took it anyway, and as I was driving down the county road, I saw this beautiful lady hitchhiking. Man, I picked her up and I thought all my lonely days were over. But then, BLAM!, I got a flat tire. So I started to jack up the car. Then this logging truck went speeding right past me. I knocked the jack over, and my spare tire went rolling down the cliff into the river, floating away. The tire made it to town before I did. Cars and women, they’re nothing but trouble. Hey Jack, hey Jack, are you listening?
Jack: Oh yeah, Larry. Hey, that’s nice.
Larry: Nice! Here I am suffering in the depths of depression and he says it’s nice. Nice! And all this rain. It’s rain, rain, rain, every day, and I’m trapped in that little cabin and the rain beats down on the roof, yatatata, yatatata. I-I—I—just can’t take it anymore. Jack, I can’t take it. I shoulda stayed in the city. . That’s it! I shoulda stayed in the city. At least in the city, there were millions of people. Sure, I was alone, but 1 was alone with millions of people. Here, I’m alone by myself.
Jack: Oh, Larry, you’re not by yourself. Larry, settle down, huh? You got friends that love you, Larry. You have a piece of land with a nice little house. And lookit where you’re living, Larry, lookit those gracious rolling hills, that vast expansive sky, Larry. Breathe in those negative ions, Larry. (slaps him on the back, causing him to cough). Larry, Larry, you know what it is? You’re depressed. When I’m depressed like you, Larry, you know, I just take a walk in the forest and I walk until I find a tree that’s just right and I sit under that tree until I feel at peace again.
Larry: Yeah, That’s all there is around here, is trees. Trees, trees, trees. When’s the last time you took a tree home?
Jack: Christmas Ha ha ha. But that’s not the point, Larry, the point is,this community. The people here, the energy, the electricity. It’s a center of creative energy. You don’t know it, Larry, but this place is paradise.
Larry: Oh, it’s paradise. Whoopee, whoopee, I’m in paradise. So where’s Eve?
Jack: I don’t know. Hey, you know what your problem is? You know what you need, Larry? (bounding ball to him)
Larry: (catching ball) A ball?
Jack: An old lady, Larry, someone to support you, Larry, someone to fulfill you’re inner needs, somebody, somebody to keep you warm in those wet cold winters. That’s what you need. I know it.
Larry: But Jack, there’s no old ladies around here. everybody’s attached to someone else and has three or four kids.
Jack: Hey, that’s not true, I went to town the other day. There’s plenty of available women. Now, what you have to do is put out some positive energy. And go get ’em, Larry.
Larry: Oh, you name one single lady that’s available.
Jack: Oh, come on, Larry, I can name one, sure, o.k. how about Lucille?
Larry; Lucille! She has two old men.
Larry; Sage! She has two old ladies.
Jack: Well, there must b somebody. Let me see here, ahhh.
Larry: Well?……Well, you now have ten seconds to answer that question. (Forms arms into metronome. Tick, tock sounds, quiz program music. Bell rings)
Jack: (with bell) Matilda! What about Matilda, Larry?
Larry: Matilda, now there’s a real old lady. She’s sixty five years old.
Jack: Picky, picky, picky. Larry, you saw Matilda at the dance, didn’t you? She had high boots and that short skirt and she was boogieing up and down. Whoo, whoo, she was really moving, uh, I tell you, after Six Dos Equis, Larry, she was looking mighty good.
Larry: Oh yeah, hey Jack. I’ll ask her out. I’ll ask her out.
Jack: Well, if you do you better check with her old man, cause he’s the jealous type.
Larry: I knew it, I knew it. There’s nobody, there’s nobody. I’m destined to loneliness.
Jack: Hey Larry, c’mon, can I talk to you man to man, hippie to hippie? I just want to talk to you. You know, I don’t understand why you don’t take Spring out.
Larry: Spring! I-I-I..can’t ask Spring out.
Jack: Why not?
Larry: Why, she was your old lady for years.
Jack: Oh God, she’s my ex—old lady, Larry. She’s nothing but a land partner, now. She’s a free spirit, you know that.
Larry: I can’t do that, Jack. You’d get mad. I know you’d get mad.
Jack: C’mon Larry, I would not get mad. I want you to take her out. I really want you two to see each other.
Larry: No, no, I know you’d get mad at me, Human relations, you know.
Jack: (next three exchanges are spoken simultaneously): C,mon Larry, I would not get mad. That’s baloney, you know it is.
Larry: No, I can’t ask her out.
Jack: You know what it is? You’re afraid to take her out because she might say yes, and you don’t know what you’d do if
she said yes.
Larry: Hey, Jack. Hey, Jack. I ain’t afraid. I asked her out. I asked her out.
Jack: Son of a bitch, Larry!
Larry: I knew it. 1 knew it. I knew you couldn’t stand to see her with somebody else.
Jack: You know why I’m mad, Larry? I’m mad because you’re my best friend, right? right? Why am I the last person to hear about this?
Larry: Jack, we didn’t really go out on a date. I went over to her house…
Jack: You went over to her house…
Larry: And we took off our clothes…
Jack: You took off your clothes..
Larry: And massaged each other. We got into massaging. We did in and out massages, and squeezing messages, and arm and hand massage, and rolfing and golfing and toe massage, and then, and then….
Jack: And then?
Larry: We meditated. Did you ever meditate for two hours with a hard-on?
Jack: Oh, man, I should have known! Six years!
(Enter Spring, chanting)
Spring (chanting): Always us, living love, we are one. Always us living love, we are one. Hi, you guys.
Larry: Hi, Spring. Om Shanti
Spring: Hey I knew I’d run into you today because I needed to see you. (sigh) I guess that’s just the cosmic way things work.
Larry: Yeah, I know, everything is cosmic. I have a friend named Cosmos and we used to run into each other all the time in the subway..
Jack: All rite, all rite, Larry.
Spring: You know, I wanted to ask you guys if you could come over and help me on Sunday. I have a problem.
Jack: I know, Spring.
Larry: What is it, Spring. What is it?
Spring: Well, I’ve thought about it for a long time. I’ve meditated on it, too. I threw the I Ching and I did the Tarot and I even looked into a crystal ball, and I finally came to a decision. I’m going to cut down a tree.
Jack: Hahaha, Is that your big problem, Spring?
Larry: I think it’s beautiful that Spring is so sensitive to living thIngs. Especially trees. Oh, Spring, I love trees..
Jack: Oh yeah, Spring, Larry loves trees. Why he spent the night with a tree once, huh, didn’t you, Larry?
Spring: Anyway, I need the sun on my garden and the tree is blocking the sun. And 1 have to cut it down and I’m really worried about the nature spirits. Especially the tree spirits. The other day something magical happened. I was just sitting in my garden very quietly and I kind of merged with everything around me. And all of a sudden, well, it looked for a minute like a Jerusalem artichoke leaf, but it was really a little tiny man. He had a little cap and a little green tunic and a beard. And without really saying anything out loud to him, I told him what I needed, sunlight, and he smiled at me and he nodded and then he disappeared. What a blessing! Anyway, now I don’t have to worry about cutting the tree down. It’s all right. Larry, would you come over on Sunday and help me, please?
Larry: You want me to come over to your house on Sunday? Wow.
Spring: Yeah, I’ll fix us a really beautiful breakfast.
Larry: Come over to your house and have breakfast? Oh, I’d love to.
Spring. We can invite all those spirits and leprechauns and have a séance.
Jack: Oh yeah, st!ll fixing fried kelp powder for breakfast, Spring?
Spring: No, I don’t cook anymore. I only eat raw.
Larry: Oh, I love raw food. Raw meat balls, it’s kosher, too.
Spring: Larry? You know the other night when you came over? It was so beautiful. It’s so rare when a man will expose himself spiritually.
Jack: (coughs significantly)
Spring: See you, Jack. Bye bye Larry, thank you.
Larry: Bye, see you Sunday.
(Exit Spring, chanting.)
Larry: Well, ah, hey, Jack, I gotta get going.
Jack: Two hours with a hard-on, huh, Larry?
Larry: (Groan) Hey, Jack, I gotta do my laundry.
Jack: Hey, doesn’t that make you feel capable, Larry? I mean we can do our own laundry and everything?
Jack: Poor Larry, just been in the country a year, and still having trouble adjusting. What am I talking about, as if I didn’t have problems. Six years. I spent six years with Spring and then it’s Hello Swami and Goodbye Jack. I mean I could see it if it was another lover, but what possible chance do I have against some prayer beads and a picture? And to top it all off he is the ugliest swami I ever saw. I mean I even tried hiding his picture once. I hid it under a stack of magazines in the outhouse. I thought she’d never find it.
She came home one day and says, “Where’s Swami?” “I don’t know.” “Well, I’ll just have to meditate until Swami calls me to him.” So she meditated for seven hours and after seven hours, nature called her to the outhouse before the swami did. And she found him. The next morning at dawn she was turning the shitter into a shrine. She hung the picture right opposite the seat, so every time I took a crap I had to look at his face. (thoughtfully) It did make me regular, though, I have to say that.
I don’t know, I tried to get into her trip. I really gave it an honest try. I even listened to his tapes. But he’d say these off the wall things like ”Death is not necessarily life, and life is not necessarily death. And neither one is necessarily necessary”. Now what in hell does he mean by that? What the hell does he know about death? What does anybody know about death? What do I know about it? You know, I go to cemeteries, and I see the tombstones. I see the dead deer on the county road. I don’t know, I don’t know anything. I know he doesn’t know anything. But I do wonder where the spirits of those little creatures go when they die. . Well, I gotta go do my laundry.