Mercury Parallel

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In symbolism, theme, and plot this is a Greco-Roman wrestling story of power. Design accordingly. If desired, projections of the scene titles and translations can be used. Otherwise, minimalism works best.

For wrestling moves, explicit descriptions have been left out for various reasons: there is no accounting for the size and shapes of the actors, which will determine what can be done. And an online search (or book) will offer a wealth of information on different throws, holds, pinning moves, and combos that best suit the cast’s physical stature and athletic ability.

On the gates the motto was written: In Cauda Venenum
-The poison is in the tail.
-The worst is yet to come.

Read Sample

ACT 1- Apotheosis

Scene 1: Quid quid Latine dictum sit altum videtur
(If it’s said in Latin, that shit will sound deep)

Wrestling. There's a row of chairs on one side. COREY and ESAI grapple out onto the mat. COREY is muscular but has a soft face and intelligent eyes. ESAI is taller and more muscular. Feet shuffling, gasping and grunting are the only sounds. Everything is in shadows, like a film noir scene.

COACH DAVIS NAVARRO, a short Italian-American with a hoarse drinking voice, referees the bout from his seat. The rest of the wrestling team sits and scoffs, cheers, and makes cat calls. ESAI sweeps COREY’S feet and knocks him to the ground. COREY flips and flattens out on his stomach, making his opponent pounce. NAVARRO mumbles ‘2’ and motions the points to ESAI with his hands. They deadlock in a wrestling hold.

COREY
Nil igitur mors est ad nos

ANNOUNCER
Death is nothing for us.

COREY
Non omnis moriar.

ANNOUNCER
I shall not die.

COREY
Non omnis moriar

ANNOUNCER
I shall not die.

ESAI
Corey, shut up.

COREY
I got a big test tomorrow. I gotta study on my feet.

COACH NAVARRO
Come on, ladies. What is this? Stop scissoring each other’s vag muffins and run a combo!

ANNOUNCER
Why are we here?

COREY
Ummm…

ANNOUNCER
Why are we here?

COREY
Quid summus hic?

ANNOUNCER
Good.

COREY
Bunum.

ANNOUNCER
Do you desire intimacy?

COREY
Ummm…cupido…err…cupidinis…No, it’s libido…libidino.

ANNOUNCER
Corey, do you desire intimacy?

COREY
Corey, vis autem libido?

ANNOUNCER
No, I’m asking you a question.

COREY
Umm…

ANNOUNCER
To you. You, right there.

COREY
Ummm…hi?

ANNOUNCER
Salve.
Esai chops Corey’s arms away every time he tries to get up. Going for the pin, ESAI tries a half-nelson, bridge and finally they reach a stalemate. Although they grunt and squiggle around, for all intent and purposes they are catching their breath.

Using his forehead, ESAI rams COREY’S face into mat. COREY struggles to lift his head.

ANNOUNCER
What’s going on right now? Is this symbolic of your struggle for intimacy.

COREY
No. It’s wrestling practice. Umm…colluctatio.

ANNOUNCER
Yeah, yeah, I know.

COREY
Who are you?

ANNOUNCER
Excuse me, we ask the questions around here, okay?

COREY
We?

ANNOUNCER
Yes, now what is this thing you’re doing?

COREY
This is the elimination round for who’s going to qualify for the district tournament on our team.

ANNOUNCER
Now, what is this thing you are doing?

COREY
What am I doing?

ANNOUNCER
Quid agis?

COREY
Well I’m…oh my God.

ANNOUNCER
Yes.

COREY
This has never happened to me before.

ANNOUNCER
Vos erectionem?

COREY
Well no, I actually get quite a lot of those.

ANNOUNCER
We know.

COREY
But the first time it’s happened here.

ANNOUNCER
Amicus autem tui non placet?

COREY
I don’t know. Esai is going freak out.

Esai startles and withdraws his hand. Corey pulls a reverse from his knees and then reverses him so he’s behind Esai now.

ANNOUNCER
You got an erection because…

COREY
Ubi amor, ibo dor.

ANNOUNCER
“Where love, there pain.” So you are in…

COREY
In love with strategy. And if it takes an erection to win then I’m in. Esai can feel it. Pressing against his back. And for a split second, I feel his lower back release.

ANNOUNCER
Why doesn’t he say something?

Coach Navarro blows his whistle.

NAVARRO
Time.

NAVARRO stands, walks over to COREY and hands him the captain’s head gear, which is sprayed in gold.

NAVARRO
Well Corey: you won fair and square. You wear the captain’s crown for another week.

COREY
(putting on golden headgear)
Thank you, thank you! Happy to be your leader.

NAVARRO
It was a fucking shitty match, but you won. Esai, you're either going to have to be the back-up or drop down a weight class.

ESAI
How much do I have to drop?

NAVARRO
Not that much. Ten.

ESAI
Ten pounds?! What? Why so much?

NAVARRO
Bear decided to go up a class you, so you're gonna have to drop down two weight classes.

ESAI
In three days?

NAVARRO
Hey, are you going to cry that weight off like a lil' bitch? Do you wanna win or not?

ESAI
Where are the garbage bags?

NAVARRO
Meet me in my office in a minute. But first I just want to say something to the young men here, and I used that term loosely because some of y’all are softer than Japanese paper lanterns. I feel like I could poke a hole in you guys with a dry newspaper. Now listen up turdnuts: it’s time to unscrew your tampons and let your plums descend and dangle. Let them thing swing like a gorilla! Because you are fighting a war out there and you don’t have a lot of weapons in your sack. What’s the war? Your destiny. Now if you want to end up another castrated corporate eunuch sitting on a board then go right ahead on the track you’re on. And I’ll tell you something the world already has enough dickless simps. Impress these scouts. You got three battles: district, regionals, and state. Convince these guys to give you over-privileged jizzwads a scholarship instead riding your Daddy’s diamond-studded dildo. Travel the world, make something of yourselves, so you don’t end up an old man. With no fucking prospects. Coaching high school wrestling to a squad of teenage boys who are built like swizzle sticks and have phones that cost more than your house. Now I know a lot of your cheesedicks are rich brats. But if you want to be your own man, this is your chance. This is your chance to strike out there and make a mark in this world, instead of on your pillowcase. And let’s be honest, all you got is your hustle and muscle. Cause for most of you it ain’t going to happen through your talent, good looks, or from being honest. So shine up your huevos and put them on the skillet. Cause it’s a war, right men?!?!

BEAT

NAVARRO
So…I hope that was inspiring. I know there’s a party tonight organized by some primo trust fund skanks and some very chubby Wrestlerette cheerleaders. And you probably think it’ll be cool to go and get your pork swords wet. But remember: wrap it up. You’re too young and ugly to be breeding. Now do your laps and hit the showers or the wet wipes or whatever you do to clean the dried crust of jizz off your flabby flaps. Oh… and go Tritons.

Coach exits. Corey goes up to Esai.

COREY
Great match. I thought you did good today.

ESAI
Corey, fuck off!

COREY
What, I’m serious!

ESAI
I bust my ass at every practice. I do all the work. And I really want to win. And the rest of you guys are smoking weed in the locker room, getting drunk, eating donuts, and taking home trophies. I can’t stand this shit!

COREY
Esai, you’re too thirsty.

ESAI
So I shouldn’t care at all. Like you?

COREY
I care. Just about different things. You gotta take an ex-lax and push out that broom stick. Stop caring so much and it’ll come.

ESAI
Yeah, you would know about coming, you fucking freak. Next time you get a boner let a motherfucker know so he’s not squeezing a hot dog pack.

COREY
Hey, it was a mechanical reaction to pressure and force. Everyone gets them. And I didn’t hear you complaining.

ESAI
(joking)
Fuck off.

COREY
Bend over and I will. Right into those tasty cakes.

ESAI
Eww, you dicksmoker.
COREY
Come on, let me drizzle in that tres con leche.

ESAI
Asshole: don’t talk about food. I need to lose ten pounds.

COREY
You’re still going to the party tonight right?

ESAI
I can’t. Alcohol is empty calories.

COREY
Yeah but the fucking you’ll get from the alcohol is exercise. And there’s going to be a lot of sloppy sluts that will help you burn off that beer. There’s some new wrestler cheerleader stopping by; probably another unabrow Muppet.

ESAI
I can’t.

COREY
Come on. Remember the motto: nunc est Bibendum.

ESAI
Yo, you the only motherfucker who actually tries to remember that Latin shit from class.

COREY
I gotta. We are people of color and we need an edge to look smart. Quid quid Latine dictum sit altum videtur.

ESAI
What’s that mean?

COREY
“If it’s said in Latin, then shit sounds deep.”

ESAI
Well thanks to you I gotta grab some garbage bags from coach’s office so I sweat off a bowling ball. So you can shove your Latin up your ass.

COREY
Carpe diem, motherfucker!

Esai exits. Corey stands for a moment and looks up to the sky.

COREY
Are you still there?

BEAT

COREY
Illic es? Illic es?


SCENE 2: Asinus asinum fricat (The jackass rubs the jackass)

BEAR (O/S)
Hey, you fucking faggot! Say it! Say it!

BEAR enters with LAZLO in a headlock.

LAZLO
Bear, it fucking hurts.

BEAR
If you want it to stop, then say it. Come on, cocksmoker.

LAZLO
I sucked off Esai.

BEAR
I can't hear you!

LAZLO
I sucked off Esai.

BEAR
And…
LAZLO
I sucked off Esai and… swallowed his chunky brown cum.

BEAR
Ewww….(lets him go and laughs) I can't believe you said that, Laz. Hey, everybody did you hear that?!? Did his tweeter taste like a chalupa, Laz? Did his cum taste like rice and beans?

BEAR grabs a water bottle and squirts some liquid into his mouth, simulating the 'climax.

LAZLO
No, it tasted like your mom’s rusty meat crease.

BEAR
(retarded laugh and gesture)
Real original, Laz. "My mom,' gee I haven't heard that one before. God, for someone who has parents who are doctors how did you become such a basic retard?

LAZLO
Fuck off, you're the retard.

BEAR
I got 200 points from perfect on my SATs!

LAZLO
You took the test ten times and had your dad fly in tutors.

BEAR
So? How much did you get, fagzilla?

LAZLO
I got a 32 on my ACTs.

BEAR
ACTs don't count!

LAZLO
Uh-huh. In the midwest they do.

BEAR
Wow, let me go grab my John Deere tractor and we can have a hoe down.

LAZLO
Whatever.

LAZLO
I’m just playing with you Laz. You my brother from another mother. And I need you to do me a favor.

LAZLO
Bear, go fall into an ocean of AIDS.

BEAR
Hey, just a minute.

LAZLO
No, Bear!

BEAR
Where are you fucking manners? Can you at least let me ask the question before you open those dick sucking lips and say ‘no.’

LAZLO
I know what you’re going to ask.
BEAR
Oh, I didn’t know you were a mind reader. Do you want me to pound on you again?

LAZLO
Go eat a bag of frozen dicks, Bertrand!

BEAR
I told you what happens when you call me that!

Bear puts Lazlo in a half nelson and twists his nipples hard.

LAZLO
If you’re trying to get on my good side to ask this favor this is not the way to do it.

Bear lets Lazlo go.

BEAR
You right, you right. Got heated for a second. But now I’m back to myself. Laz, I want to ask you a very important question that relates to your future: what do you know about thirsty pussy?

LAZLO
Thirsty pussy? Bear what are you talking about?

BEAR
The golden valley, the pink turtleneck, Count Flapula, The Spasm Chasm. Girls, Lazlo! Girls! What do you know about their likes and dislikes?

LAZLO
I know they don’t like to be called any of those things.

BEAR
But besides that, you know what they do like? To get high. And you know what they like even more once they’re blitzed? Us.

LAZLO
I see.

BEAR
Now we’re about to embark on road trips and hotel rooms. And you know what that means as far as opportunities with girls, right?

LAZLO
Yeah. But I got the stash. So why do I need you? I could bag beefbox without you.

BEAR
You need me to charm them. Lure them back to the hotel.

LAZLO
Bear, you look like a rape stick. You couldn’t charm pussy in a blind whorehouse.

BEAR
I’m gonna cut your ass!

LAZLO
You don’t pull none of this sandbox bully shit when Corey and them are around.

BEAR
That’s cause it’s hard for me to get angry when there’s so much estrogen in the room with you two. I’d rather knit a quilt with all that girl power aura you guys got.

LAZLO
You’re just fucking scared of him.

BEAR
Scared?

LAZLO
If you wasn’t scared of him, you’d do something.

BEAR
I am going to do something. But I do something when I want it done. Not by egging me on.

LAZLO
Who has more wins? Who gets more bitches?

BEAR
Look Corey ain’t my kryptonite so you can stop gassing him up. This ain’t about his bitchified ass.

LAZLO
This is about your sad attempt to get basic pussy.

BEAR
And this is about you and your future.

LAZLO
What about it?

BEAR
Last tournament you bitched out with cramps. Cramps! “Cramps, ewww, I can't go on, I've got leg cramps.' You been gay like a pain reliever.

LAZLO
I was making weight, Bear. I didn’t have any water for two days.

BEAR
Yeah, but you didn't have to cry over your legs like they were being amputated. It's bad enough we're known as an 'academic' high school. Shit like that is why everyone thinks our wrestling squad is a bunch of foaming cuntflaps.

LAZLO
We're going to change it this year.

BEAR
Yes, we are. You and me: all the way to state finals. The rest of the guys suck.

LAZLO
Corey won district last year.

BEAR
My left nutsack could've won district last year. All he did was fall on top of people. He has no heart. And Esai is just the opposite. I've seen piles of dirt smarter than him. I'm the only one. And you are never gonna get anywhere unless you practice with the best.

LAZLO
You mean yourself?

BEAR
Yeah man. If you wanna come to state and make it to that next level with me, I can make it happen. I can show you a few
tricks. And I've wrestled against half the guys in your class, Laz. I can tell you a few things.

LAZLO
And you'd do this out of the kindness of your heart?

BEAR
Now this is what we call a fair trade agreement.

LAZLO
I can't get you any more of that stuff, Bear.

BEAR
Why not?

LAZLO
Those were samples I swiped from my dad's secretary. It was a one-time deal.

BEAR
‘Samples?’ Laz, you are so full of shit. You wanna know how full of shit you are? Sammy told me you gave him some last week. Last week. While I was laid out on the trainer's table getting every joint taped up so I could walk. Meanwhile you're fucking slipping shit to Sammy so he can get high. You see how full of shit you are, Laz.

LAZLO
Bear, I don't know. I just can't-

BEAR
-what? You just can't what? Jesus Christ! I'm not a fucking junkie. I only use them during the season. And you saw how that fucker, Corey came down on my shoulder last week and almost ripped my arm off. Then he just laughs about it. You see how your own teammates will try to tear you down if they see you're rising up.

LAZLO
You think he's jealous of you? Bear, you're such a fucking egoiste.

BEAR
Egotist, you non-learning, illiterate dickweed! Egoiste is a perfume. Egotist is a…(laughs it off) never mind. I'm gonna be fine either way, I just thought you'd like to see what it's like
to win for a change. Maybe get a scout to look at you. But forget it. You've got your 32 ACT score. I'm sure some agricultural community college in Des Moines is looking for a C-student with a third-grade vocabulary. So what’s it gonna be?
BEAT

LAZLO
I just don't want my dad to find out, Bear.

BEAR
Unless you wanna be gagging on some Nebraska farmer’s corn stalk, you better get over that fear.

Cast Requirements

CHARACTERS

1. COREY – (m) Bright student. African American

2. ESAI/JOGGER – (m) Great athlete and wounded warrior. Hispanic.

3. BEAR – (m) Bully with a Napoleonic complex.

4. LAZLO/STRANGER #357 – (m) dim-witted tag-along. Non-specific race.

5. COACH NAVARRO/WRESTLER #1/SWIMMER – (m) Angry, burnt-out PE teacher. Italian-American.

6. JANICE – (f) Football cheerleader who has fallen from grace.

7. DOCTOR/PSYCHIATRIST/WRESTLER – (f) older looking woman.

8. ANNOUNCER – (m/f) voice from the sky

Set Description

SETTING
Present. Wrestling Mats. This is a posh private high school for the spawn of the trust-funded and financially-favored in South Florida.

Honors

- Royal Court Theatre US Writers' Residency

Production and Development History

- reading and development at The Juilliard School (2015)
- Royal Court Theatre US Writers' Residency (2015)