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"Fishing on Your Birthday"



















Synopsis:
















This is a one-act play approximately twenty minutes long. The story’s central character, Walter, is an elderly man ninety-nine years old. He is hard of hearing and uses a hearing aide, and sometimes it is “on” and sometimes it is not. Unknown to him, his daughter and son, as well as the grandson, plan a surprise birthday party this very day. They come over to his apartment, unannounced, and knock at the door repeatedly, wondering if he is alright. The play opens with him on the telephone--unable to hear them knocking at the door, as he has his hearing aide turned off. Walter is on the phone--talking and making plans to go fishing, secretly, without informing his immediate family of his plans. After knocking for a period of time, they barge into his home, carrying with them a fully lit birthday cake, overstuffed with candles. He is part of a generation of people that grew up in the old school. He doesn’t e-mail, doesn’t use a cell phone or computer, period. He is stunned by how many candles are on the cake and worried that it will catch the house on fire. The surprise gift they bought for him this day, is the “very thing” that he doesn’t do, cell phones. They make him feel as though he is behind the times and unable to figure out a common problem, the cell phone. His son rides him to a point where he feels that he has to prove he is still a functioning part of society. When his son derides him-- telling him that: “he is a senior and having a “senior” moment.” He finally agrees to try and figure out the cell phone, just to prove to this “son of his”--that he is just as smart as him! He at first believes that the telephone operator is a real human being on the other end and treats him as such. He is giving a lesson to his son as to how to deal with the operator that is hassling him. And yet his family for their part, can’t get him to turn the hearing aide up so that he can hear the operator in the first place. After a period of time, the telephone operator, which is really a computer generated voice, gets him very frustrated. Together with his anxiety and frustration over someone he thinks is the operator, unable to get through to him--and his hearing aide being turned off, it turns into a major disaster! The problem he has with his cell phone, culminates with him having a couple of beers and then ultimately throwing the cell phone into the water of the kitchen sink—it went fishing! When that happens the family doesn’t really get mad at him, but instead, there is a period of dead silence while they contemplate what he had just done. The play ends with the son asking “him” to take them “Fishing on his birthday.” Cast: Walter Weasel: A crotchety old man 99 years old, grey hair, and very set in his ways. He is hard of hearing and uses a hearing aide. He moves a little slower, yet people think it uncanny that he still has a quick wit about him. Wanda Weasel: Walter’s daughter acts the part of the nurse-maid for her aging father. She mollycoddles him to an extent that he resents. She is forty years old. Walter Weasel Jr.: Long-haired hippie type, believes in love and communicating in love. Yet has forsaken both drugs and alcohol-yet plays the guitar. He is 38 years old. Mercury Weasel: Son of Walter Jr. He has an allegiance to his father as well as his grandfather Walter Sr.He is only 10 years old. Telephone Operator: Off stage telephone operator that works from a timed prerecorded tape, or live if they can mimic a telephone operator off stage.
















Cast of Characters:

Walter Weasel: A crotchety old man 99 years old, grey hair, and very set in his ways. He is hard of hearing and uses a hearing aide. He moves a little slower, yet people think it uncanny that he still has a quick wit about him.
 
Wanda Weasel: Walter’s daughter acts the part of the nurse-maid for her aging father. She mollycoddles him to an extent that he resents. She is forty years old.
 
Walter Weasel Jr.: Long-haired hippie type, believes in love and communicating in love. Yet has forsaken both drugs and alcohol-yet plays the guitar. He is 38 years old.
 
Mercury Weasel: Son of Walter Jr. He has an allegiance to his father as well as his grandfather Walter Sr.He is only 10 years old.
 
Telephone Operator: Off stage telephone operator that works from a timed prerecorded tape, or live if they can mimic a telephone operator off stage.

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