written by Christopher Gore
(A teenager from the Puerto Rican ghetto in New York City, Ralph Garcy (nee Raphael Garcia) is a drama student and aspiring standup. Here, Ralph is instructed to relate to the class his most painful memory.)
Ralph: I was comin home from school one day, as usual. I had a couple of businesses to attend to in the neighborhood. It was January -- it was snowing like crazy. Santa Claus just ripped everybody off. He split to "Toy Town", or "Igloo City", or the North Pole or wherever the hell he goes. So anyway, I was goin home, and I find this note, sayin my two chicks (his little sisters) are in church. I look at the note, wondering, "what the hell are my two chicks doin' church -- did somebody die, or somethin?" (beat) That was, uh, that was supposed to be a joke. (takes a deep breath, continues) Anyway, I went home, and I dropped a little incence, like I always do, just to unwind a little bit. And I put on the TV set, and there was this guy on the TV. And he was talkin' about Freddie. He said that, he said that Freddie Prinze...put a gun...to his head...and he, and he killed himself. (he starts to break down) It was, it was an accident, man! Shit! I mean, he was fuckin' -- he was very gifted, you know? You always laughed at him, cause he was very fuckin talented. And sometimes, you know, you didn't even wanna laugh at him, and you laughed at him anyway. (angrier) But those motherfuckers -- they had to say that he was "depressed", and he was fuckin' "suicidal," and that he was "fucked up!" I mean, they wanted his fuckin' ass, man! They wanted his fuckin' ass! 'Cause he didn't think living was such a heavy trip, you know? I mean, we can't have happy people walkin' around on this planet -- everybody's gotta be so goddamn serious! But everybody's gotta stay in business, so the fuckin' witch doctors, and the underarm deoderant spray people and the fuckin plastic surgeons can stay in business. And we can all go pray, to the asshole god up there, man, that fucked it up in the first place! (wipes tears from his eyes)
Teacher: (after several beats) Does all this make you realize anything about yourself? How does it affect you?
Ralph: How does it affect me? I'm here! And I'm in this fuckin school! And I'm fuckin' it right back, for Freddie, man!
Teacher: Take it easy, Ralph.You want them laughing with you -- not at you.
Ralph: I want 'em laughing...
Ralph: Listen, you gotta understand somethin'. You gotta understand the Puerto Rican woman. She thinks about the kids, how they gotta have a father. Love, and that sorta stuff--that's got nothin to do with it. See, my mom has an extra room, and she rents it out, and the next thing you know, I got a new "father." They're all right, mostly. They may stay a day. Or a week, or a month, if we're lucky. Sometimes they even pay the rent. They keep out all the rats. Not the animal-type rats, I'm talkin about the real rats -- the junkies and the winos and the shitheads (starts to break down) and the people who beat up on little...(crying)...little 5-year-old kids. I-I got three sisters, see. One of them, Maria, she's in kind of a "special place." We see her a couple of times a year. She's got a birth defect. But that's a goddamn lie! That's a goddam lie! You wanna know about my father, my first, real ever fuckin father? He ain't in no "special" shit! He's in New York state penitentiary, he's doin time. I remember this one night, he got "bothered," 'cause I was making her laugh, telling her stories. It was just kid stuff about flying carpets and dragons. And he got mad, 'cause she was laughing! He said I was tellin' her "lies." And one night, he got bothered, and he's beatin' the shit outta me, and he's comin down on me sayin' I make her laugh! That's not a "lie," that's a GIFT, goddamn it! HE cant do it! He says if he can't do it, he sure as shit gonna stop it. Then he went for me, and (now crying uncontrollably) she got in the way all of a sudden...he put her head inside a fuckin' wall! I mean, if it was my fuckin head it would've been alright, but it wasn't! IF IT WAS MY FUCKIN' FAT HEAD IT WOULD'VE BEEN ALRIGHT! She...she's a beautiful kid, she's 5 fuckin' years old -- she's got a pretty little laugh, she...she still laughs, as a matter of fact.... (buries his face in his hands and sobs)
Kudos and much thanks go to Shawn for these monologues, it is very much appreciated.
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