[A small apartment. A basket of unsorted laundry lies in the middle of the floor. MARTHA and OTTO are having sex on the couch.]
OTTO: That’s what I do.
OTTO: What are you thinking?
OTTO: Tell me.
MARTHA: Don’t give me a hickey. He'll notice.
OTTO: He won’t notice.
MARTHA: Don’t anyway.
OTTO: I’ll do what I want.
MARTHA: That’s what I like about you.
[He finishes. Silence.]
MARTHA: You want to help me fold?
OTTO: I have to wash off.
MARTHA: Why do you always wash off?
[Exit OTTO. MARTHA begins to fold clothes.]
MARTHA: We just finished.
MARTHA: Otto? You want to go down and check the dryer for me?
OTTO: [Offstage.] I’m washing off.
MARTHA: If I get dressed, I won't want to do it again.
OTTO: [Pause. Offstage.] In a minute. [OTTO returns.] That's the difference between him and me. He has to foldI don't.
MARTHA: He doesn't fold either.
OTTO: Well ... it's for different reasons. He doesn't fold out of laziness. With me, it's a principle.
MARTHA: I don't care. I like to fold. It's one of my joys.
OTTO: What are the others?
MARTHA: You know.
[He watches her fold. Silence.]
OTTO: You want to do it again?
MARTHA: Check the dryer for me, and I’ll think about it.
OTTO: When you're here, you have to do what I say. That's the rule.
MARTHA: It's getting dark. If I take too long, he might come by the laundry room and wonder where I am.
OTTO: Well ... fold fast so we have time for another.
MARTHA: [Folding slowly, teasing him.] I'm going ... as fast ... as I can.
[OTTO pulls a pair of men’s bikini briefs from the basket.]
OTTO: [Laughs.] What’s this?
MARTHA: Don’t make fun.
OTTO: He wears these?
MARTHA: It’s just underwear.
OTTO: Sissy boy.
MARTHA: Don’tyou’ll stretch it out!
[OTTO pulls the briefs on over his jeans.]
OTTO: ‘Cause I'm bigger than him!
MARTHA: He’ll know.
OTTO: So what?
MARTHA: You want me to have to move in here? You want me to be around all the timegetting in your space?
MARTHA: All right then. Besides, you don't want him to find outtrust me.
OTTO: Sissy boy? What's he gonna do?
MARTHA: He may not look like much, but he’s got a temper.
MARTHA: You’re such a kid sometimes, Otto.
OTTO: I’ve got a temper too.
MARTHA: You don’t think about things. You don’t think about what might happen. You just do whatever you want.
[OTTO parades around in the briefsposing like a comic-book hero.]
OTTO: Stand back! This is a job for ... Sissy Boy! Excuse me, Sirare you banging my wife? I hear you're much bigger than I am! [Not getting enough attention, OTTO gives up.] You should get your own place. That way, you could come over whenever I want. Sometimesif I was in a good moodI might even let you stay all night.
MARTHA: I could make eggs in the morning.
OTTO: If I said poached, you'd have to make them poached! Even though it's more work!
MARTHA: Poached isn’t so hard. I don't know why everyone complains. [He kisses her.] But I already have someone to make eggs for.
OTTO: Sure, but ... he doesn’t appreciate it like me. I appreciate an egg ‘cause I know what goes into it. I can still do it myselfthat’s why!
MARTHA: You gonna check the dryeror am I?
OTTO: It’s still going.
MARTHA: How do you know?
OTTO: I use them all the time! I know how long it takes! I’m a self-sufficient human being! I make my own eggs!
MARTHA: Well ... we should probably check just the same.
OTTO: If you needed a place to stay ... you know ... in between ... while you were looking for your own place ... you could stay here. Only for a week or two. ‘Cause I wouldn’t want a woman around for too long. But a week or two would be okay. You could make eggs, and we could do it any time you wanted. In the morning. Or in the shower.
MARTHA: I’d like to have my own place.
MARTHA: You know what I’d doif I had my own place?
MARTHA: Don’t get mad.
MARTHA: I’d have three or four guys.
OTTO: Three or four?
OTTO: Is that right?
OTTO: What for?
MARTHA: To keep me happy. ‘Cause no one guy is enough, I think. It’s like they’ve all got parts, you know ... and if you could put all the parts together in one guy it would be enough ... but they don’t come that way. They’re all mixed up. They got scrambled somehow. [Pause.] Besides, every guy I’ve ever been with has had other women. You think I don’t know? I know what’s going on. I just pretend like I don’t so ... I don’t know why. I just pretend. That’s what I do. Well, maybe it’s my turn, you know. Maybe it’s their turn to come to me. Maybe it’s my turn to use them and tell them to get out when I’m done with them and make them clean up after me. Maybe I’ll have as many guys as I want, and they can only come when I call them. When I ring my little bell! What do you think of that?
OTTO: I’d be enoughif it weren’t for the fact that I couldn’t stomach having you around all the time ‘cause of the crying and stuff.
MARTHA: You look silly in those shorts. [OTTO removes the briefs.] I don’t cry all that much. I’m pretty stabledon’t you think? For a woman?
OTTO: For a woman, I guess. [Pause.] I bet he doesn’t make you scream like I do.
MARTHA: You’re such a kid sometimes.
OTTO: Does he?
MARTHA: He asks questions sometimes.
OTTO: That’s what I thought!
MARTHA: He used to.
OTTO: But not anymore.
OTTO: ‘Cause you know what it’s like to be with a real man now! That’s one thing Otto’s good for!
[MARTHA begins to get dressed.]
OTTO: What are you doing?
MARTHA: I have to check the towels.
OTTO: Don’t put that on.
MARTHA: They should be done by now.
OTTO: I told you I’d check.
MARTHA: Well ... check then, but I need to get going.
OTTO: Why all of a sudden?
MARTHA: I’ll be right back.
OTTO: So? Make up some liehe believes anything you tell him.
MARTHA: ‘Cause he hasn’t caught me yet.
OTTO: So what if he does? You were just talking about how you don't care anymore, how you’re gonna do whatever you like.
MARTHA: I was just talking.
[Pause. MARTHA moves for the door. OTTO blocks her way.]
MARTHA: I'm sorry, OttoI have to go.
OTTO: In a minute.
MARTHA: It’s getting dark. I don’t want the towels to wrinkle.
OTTO: Towels don’t wrinkle.
MARTHA: The thin ones do.
OTTO: Take off your clothes.
MARTHA: He notices if the towels are wrinkled and wants to know why I didn’t take them out right away.
OTTO: Do a dance for me. Peel ‘em off real slow.
OTTO: You’re gonna make me clean up after you, huh?! Come when you call?!
OTTO: You have to do what I say! That's the rule!
MARTHA: Okay. You check the towelsand I’ll get ready. Okay? You go check, and when you come back I’ll be naked on the couch.
OTTO: Otto says, “Take off your clothes!” Do it! Otto says, “Now!”
MARTHA: In a minute.
OTTO: Otto says, “Now!” Take it off!
MARTHA: Let me get the
OTTO: You’re so worried about him! Sissy boy! Everything’s gotta be just right for sissy boy! Just so for sissy boy! Can’t have a wrinkle in the towel for sissy boy! What’s sissy boy gonna do?! Huh?! Fuck sissy boy!
[OTTO pees on the clean clothes.]
MARTHA: Dammit, Otto! [OTTO laughs.] I’m gonna have to wash them all over again!
[He pushes her down on the couch.]
OTTO: Three or four guys?!
[He strikes her.]
OTTO: Like I’m not enough for you if I wanted to be!
[He strikes her repeatedly.]
OTTO: All you need is Otto! I got all the parts! All the parts! Right here!
[As suddenly as he began, OTTO stops hitting her and begins kissing her neck.]
OTTO: I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm sorryokay?
[OTTO pulls up her skirt and has sex with her. Silence.]
OTTO: What are you thinking?
OTTO: Tell me.
MARTHA: Hurry ... I still have to fold the towels.
* * *
Copyright © 1998 by Walter Wykes
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