2.3 The Grope

A one act play

(Ralph and Jeff are ambling along the main street. It is a sunny day and the pedestrian precinct is busy but the two men are in no hurry and are just killing time while they stroll)

Ralph: Sorry (he accidentally bumps into another pedestrian and apologises).

Jeff: Busy old place, today.

Ralph: Yep. The old sunshine brings out the best in people.

Jeff: There’s a lot of half-naked bodies about, I’ll grant you that.

Ralph: Wait till you hear what I read recently in one of those crazy American newspapers. This is a true story. This guy is out on a first date with this girl and he arranges it with his best friend to mug them. The reason for this is the man fights off the abductor and becomes a hero in the girls eye.

Jeff: I hope you’re not suggesting that we do this.

Ralph: No, no, I’m just telling the story.

Jeff: So how did it go? Did they go ahead with it?

Ralph: They did (He evades another person who almost walks into him) but it didn’t finish well. It started off good. The couple were walking along until the “friend” jumped out of the bushes. He had a knife on him. This wasn’t in the script. A bit of wrestling began between the men ending up with both of them getting knife wounds in their hands. Blood had been spilled. To make matters worse the girl runs off.

Jeff: This is a true story.

Ralph: I wouldn’t lie to you, Jeff.

Jeff: What happened next?

Ralph: Well, with the girl away the two men decide that the abductor better high tail it and the other one will go looking for the girl. Unfortunately, the girl has phoned the police and they’re on their way to the crime scene. The man can hear the sirens in the distance. In a few minutes the police have found the mugger. It ends up the men have to come clean on their escapade and they escape with a warning. Predictably, it’s the end of the romance as the girl doesn’t want to see the guy again. Oh, sorry (Ralph bumps into a person and spins round lifting up a hand and inadvertently touching the breast of the woman he has brushed against)

Woman: Hey, watch it.

Ralph: I’m sorry.

Woman: You meant that. You deliberately touched me. (Jeff lifts both his hands up indicating innocence)

Ralph: (to Jeff) What are you doing? you’re not under arrest.

Jeff: I’m on your side, Ralph. I do think this was an honest to goodness accidental feel.

Woman: (to Ralph) Don’t ignore me. You think it’s OK to pester woman by pawing all over them because it’s a crowded place.

Ralph: I didn’t mean it. I turned round, put my hands up and said sorry. I didn‘t even know if you were a woman or not when I touched you.

Woman: Well, I never.

Ralph: That didn’t sound right. You are a woman. I can see that. I didn’t mean to feel…feel…the…

Woman: Liar! How many women have you touched up today? You are disgusting. You make me sick. You’re lucky my husband isn’t here.

Ralph: (lifts his hand up in defence) Lady, I honestly-

Woman: -I don’t want to see your grubby hands. Put those grubby hands away. They should be cut off. In fact, that’s not the only thing that should be cut off. (she hits Ralph with her handbag a few times. He takes a few steps back and loses his balance by slipping on litter. He falls to the ground in an unceremonious heap)

Another Woman: You pervert. (Ralph has landed underneath a woman with a mini-skirt. Upset, she lifts a stiletto heel and aims it for Ralph‘s face)

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