BillyShakespeare.com: It’s like Shakespeare...only in English.

“I love you just the way you aren’t.” ~ B.S.

The Incomplete Worlds Of Billy Shakespeare | BillyShakespeare.com: It's like Shakespeare...only in English.

Billy Plays With Himself

one-act plays

The Complaint Dept.

Dramatis Personae

LADY, the lady customer

CLERK, the clerk

MANAGER, the...alright...you get the point

INT. PHARMACY

CLERK stands motionless behind the counter with a vague expression on his face as LADY walks towards him.

LADY: I’ve come to complain.

CLERK: Yes, ma’am. About what?

LADY: About this bottle of Tylenol.

CLERK (taking the bottle from her and inspecting it closely): Yes, ma’am. What’s wrong with it?

LADY: Well, it killed my husband.

CLERK: Yes, and...

LADY: What do you mean, “and...?” I said it killed my husband!

CLERK: Well, ma’am, I’m afraid I can’t hear complaints about your husband, just for the purchased item.

The CLERK places the bottle of Tylenol on the counter and pushes it toward the LADY, smiling pleasantly.

LADY: I’m not complaining about my husband...

CLERK: Perhaps you should see a marriage counselor.

LADY: Now what’s the point in that? He’s dead!

CLERK: Oh, I see. Well, no problem then. Have a nice day!

LADY (speaking through gritted teeth): Could I speak to your manager, please?

CLERK (hesitant): Very well, ma’am.

CLERK drops straight down behind counter and comes up again a moment later wearing a false nose and glasses. He speaks in a deeper voice.

CLERK: Hello, I’m the manager. How may I help you?

LADY: (glaring at him): You’re not fooling anyone, you know.

CLERK takes off false nose and leaves. He reappears a moment later with the real MANAGER.

LADY: Are you the manager?

MANAGER: Yes, ma’am. You have a complaint?

CLERK: Your Tylenol killed my husband!

MANAGER: And...?

LADY (pointing at CLERK): That’s what he said!

MANAGER: Oh, I see. Well, no problem then. Have a nice day!

LADY: Look, if you don’t do something, I’ll find a cop who will!

MANAGER: Do something? About what?

LADY: The Tylenol!

MANAGER (picking up the bottle from off the counter): Well, we can’t accept this... It’s been opened!

LADY: I know it’s been opened! My husband is the one who opened it!

MANAGER: Perhaps we should speak to him then.

LADY: You’ll have to hurry, rigor mortis is setting in! He’s lying stone dead in our kitchen!

MANAGER: Oh, I see. Well, no problem then. Have a nice day!

LADY: Will you stop saying that! Look...I’ve had just about enough of this. Are you going to do something or not?

MANAGER: Madam! We absolutely pride ourselves on our customer service. We will take immediate action, of course.

(turning to CLERK)

Reginald! Give the lady a new bottle of Tylenol!

LADY: I don’t want a new bottle!

MANAGER: I see. Very well. We’ll refund your money.

(to CLERK)

Reginald, give the lady a dollar.

LADY: A dollar!

MANAGER: Two.

LADY: Ten!

MANAGER: Eight!

LADY: Eight-fifty!

MANAGER: Deal! Reginald...

CLERK reaches into the pocket of his white lab coat and fishes around for the exact change, then hands the LADY her money.

CLERK: Thank you, ma’am...and have a nice day! (He smiles pleasantly.)

The CLERK and MANAGER watch as the LADY exits. After a long pause they begin to speak to each other.

CLERK: Think she was telling the truth? About the Tylenol?

MANAGER (picking up bottle and stares at it for a moment): Could be...it’s the fourth bottle that’s come back this week. Oh well, find a box for this and put it back on the shelf.

CLERK: Right.

MANAGER exits, leaving CLERK alone with the Tylenol bottle.

CLERK: Christ, that lady gave me such a friggin’ headache...

CLERK opens bottle up, sniffs it, then takes one. He swallows it and just stares straight ahead. He then slowly sinks straight down behind counter, remaining expressionless the whole time.

FADE TO BLACK.