Frankie and Johnny
written by Terrence McNally
Frankie: That music is nice. Makes me...(sighs) think of grace. What do you want to kill yourself about sometimes?
Johnny: I want to kill myself sometimes when I think that I'm the only person in the world and that part of me that feels that way is trapped inside this body that only bumps into other bodies without ever connecting to the only other person in the world trapped inside of them. We have to connect. We just have to.
Frankie: I feel...(sighs) very...
Johnny: Say it...
Frankie: No, I don't know what it is.
Johnny: Say it, say it anyway.
Johnny: Good, that's very nice.
Frankie: I'm looking for somebody to take care of me this time.
Johnny: Aren't we all?
Frankie: Why do we keep going from one subject I don't like to another?
Johnny: What is this? I mean…all of a sudden the armor's up.
Frankie: What about your armor?
Johnny: I don't have any.
Frankie: Besides, I wasn't talking about you. You know, not everybody thinks life is a picnic, Johnny. Some of us have problems. Some of us…have sorrows. People like you are so busy telling us what you want, how you feel, you don't…you don't even notice the rest of us who aren't exactly jumping up and down singing "Yankee Doodle Dandy."
Johnny: Hold it. How are we getting into this? What are you talking about? I've done nothing but notice you.
Frankie: You don't notice me. You smother me. I am not going to give up everything again for somebody I don't know and who doesn't know me. I can't keep repeating the same stupidity in my life.
Johnny: Who's saying you have to give up anything? We're talking about love here, we're talking about need and things like that.
Frankie: We're not in love.
Johnny: What do you mean? Maybe that's what you think. I think we are. Just because you've given up on that possibility, there's no need to drag me down to that kind of level of thinking.
Frankie: I think you better leave now.
Johnny: You know, I'm sorry. I thought you were a kindred spirit. You know what kindred means? Two of a kind sharing a great affinity.
Frankie: I know what kindred means.
Johnny: Shall we go for affinity?
Frankie: You know – that is the first really rotten thing you've said to me. To make fun of somebody else's intelligence or education or lack of… That is somebody I'd be very glad not to know. I thought you were sad Johnny, I thought you were weird, I didn't know you were cruel.
Johnny: I'm sorry.
Frankie: It's just a cruelty just waiting to happen again and I don't want to be there when it does. Just get out, I want you to go.
Johnny: Why do you want me to go? Wait wait wait. Why do you want me to go?
Frankie: I want to…I want to be alone. I just…I want to watch my VCR, I wanna eat ice cream, I want to go to sleep.
Johnny: Oh, come on – alone. Gee! Sooner or later you're going to have to deal with us. I mean, that's it. There's just no two ways about it. I mean, so why don't we just get it over with now. You're in the mood, tomorrow's Sunday, day off. We'll sleep in. Let's talk.
Frankie: All right, I'm calling Tim.
Frankie: No, Bobby. He's bigger, he'll beat the shit out of you.
Johnny: Not yet, not yet.
Frankie: All I have to do is open up that window and scream.
Johnny: Are you kidding? In this city? Everybody's going to be doing the same thing. Who's going to hear you?
Frankie: Get out!
Johnny: Okay. Okay, I promise I will go, only I want to make a call. You know, this all should be so easy. Why is it always so damn harsh? Hello, um, Midnight with Marlon? Oh, ... hello Marlon. My name is uh Johnny and uh I would like to know the name of that particular piece of piano music you were just playing a minute ago so I could go out and buy the record, present it to my lady love whose name happens to be Frankie and is that not a coincidence? Frankie and Johnny. De Busi. Cor De Busi. Right. Clare de Lune. You got that?
Frankie: Why are you doing this?
Johnny: Everything I want is in this room. Uh, hello, uh, Marlon. Yeah, I know you don't take requests but could you just listen to me a second? Now there's a man and a woman. He's a cook, she's a waitress. Now they meet and they don't connect. Only she noticed him. He could feel it and he noticed her and they both knew it was going to happen. They made love and for maybe one whole night they forgot the ten million things that make people think "I don't love this person, I don't like this person, I don't know this..." Instead, it was perfect and they were perfect and that's all there was to know about them. Only now she's beginning to forget all that and who knows, pretty soon he's going to forget it, too, so I was just wondering could you play and encore for Frankie and Johnny, in the hope of something that ought to last and not self-destruct. Well, why don't you just think about it, then? Okay, thank you.
Credit and many thanks to Derek for this monologue, it is very much appreciated.
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