GK: Hello?

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Duane honey is that you?

GK: Hi mom.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Well gosh Duane where have you been? It's so hard to get you on the phone these days--

GK: I've been working on my novel, mom.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Oh, so you're still doing that, huh?

GK: Still doing it.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): I was just calling to see if you had any plans for New Year's Eve.

GK: I don't know mom, I hadn't thought about it yet.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): You know like maybe you're going to a party with a girl or something. A woman. A ladyfriend.
GK: I don't know mom.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): So you've got no one to kiss at midnight Duane, huh? No one to attack when that ball goes down the pole.

GK: I don't think of it as an "attack" mother--

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Because we're having a little party, your dad and me, and do you remember Olivia, from your old confirmation class?

GK: Confirmation class?

SS: Well she's back in town -- she just got a divorce -- I ran into her at the grocery store squeezing the mangos-

GK: Mom-

SS: Now she's gotten a little chunky because of the stress, but her face is pretty, and she's VERY lonely Duane, just like you.

GK: Mom-

SS: So you'd have something to talk about at least. And then who knows where it goes from there.

GK: Can I call you back mother?

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Whatever it takes to make you happy, your dad and I will turn the other cheek and not look at it.

GK: I don't even know what that means, mom.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Well now here comes your dad, I know he wanted to talk to you-(OFF) Hank-Hank-(TR MURMURS, OFF) It's Duane, Hank, you wanna talk to him? (TR MURMURS)- Now here, take the phone, don't drop it-(FUMBLING WITH PHONE)


GK: Hi dad.


GK: Hear you're having a New Year's Party.

TR (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Oh. Yeah. Guess so.

GK: That sounds like fun.

TR (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Probably not gonna stay up until midnight though.

GK: You're not?

TR (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Nope. I turn in around 9:30..

GK: Oh.

TR (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Yep. You see one New Year's Eve you've pretty much seen them all.

GK: I guess so.

TR (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Maybe we'll see you then.

GK: Yeah maybe, dad.

TR (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Okay. Well here's your mother.

GK: Bye dad.


SS (MIDWESTERN, OFF): What, you're done already? Here, give me the phone, give it-(ON) Duane honey are you still there?

GK: I'm here mom.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): So are you going to come to the party or not? I need to know how much food to make.

GK: I don't know, mom--

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): When do you think you'll know?

GK: I'm trying to finish this chapter.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Well I've got to call Olivia back, honey. She's waiting for an answer.


GK: You told her about this?

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Well now you're mad at me so we might as well forget the whole thing.

GK: Mom--

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): I try to do something nice for you and you throw it back in my face.

GK: Mom, I'm just working on something-

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): So we're not getting grandchildren, are we.

GK: Oh boy.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): We're not. I can tell. But we've resigned ourselves to grandchildlessness Duane. And we're thinking about getting some hamsters. Because that's about all the time your dad and I have left anyway. The life span of a hamster.

GK: Mom, stop it--

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Here I am trying to get you to be happy, and it's like trying to light Niagara Falls with a match.

GK: Mom--

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): So I'll just stop trying. Pretty soon I'll stop forever. Cause I'll be gone.

GK: Let's not go there, okay?

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): I went to a workshop last month. Called Carpentry for the Coffin.

GK: Coffin?

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): I made two of them. For your dad and me.

GK: Oh great.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): We've got two nice coffins stacked in the garage, one two--

GK: I can't believe this--

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Now when you come for New Year's Eve, Duane, you dad's gonna show you how to get them down.

GK: Oh please.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): There's a real trick to it. We wouldn't want you to crink your back.

GK: That's not the point--

SS (MIDESTERN, ON PHONE): So when the time comes, Duane, you just slip me in that pine box and drop me off the footbridge. Watch me float down. And you'll finally be done with me. Finally. (SOBS).

GK: Mom.


GK: You can call Olivia, okay? I'll come to your party.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): No, you don't want to.
GK: It's fine, mom. I can handle it.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): I don't want you to "handle it" Duane, I want you to enjoy it.

GK: I'm not going to kiss her but I'll come to your party, okay?

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): I want you to be happy, Duane. I want you to enjoy life.

GK: I'm enjoying it.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Well good So I'll call her right now then.

GK: Whatever you want to do.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): Well I'm so glad you want to come, Duane-Olivia is going to be so excited.

GK: I'm happy for her.

SS (MIDWESTERN, ON PHONE): And we can't wait to see you in three days, Duane. Three short days. Love you honey, bye.

GK: Love you too, bye--