bellboy pg.


(room, bellboy in turns, waits. H: slowly enters)


Suppose you tell me what seems to be the trouble, sir?


It's just-- I wanted to carry my own baggage


I'm afraid that wouldn't be appropriate, sir. It's me who's the bellboy


But try to understand me . .


I'll try, sir.


Excuse me while I get the rest of the luggage

H: (as Bellboy exits)

No no no, please no!


Look at me: one of those people who can control nothing of his own life. It's life that has to make all my choices for me. After such choices have been forced upon me, it's true that my twisting and turnings are evocative and unusual-- but if I myself make the initiating choice, --oh, what inevitable mediocrity. How much more interesting and vital when unpredictable storms strand me on some unrecognizable island.

(Bellboy returns, loaded dow)

This is wrong. You carry too much baggage.


But I'm a bellboy, sir.

H: (Pause)

Please, little bellboy-- drop all excess baggage


You mean, lose my job, sir?


Well-- maybe


It's the one thing I hold onto, sir



You mean, it keeps idle hands occupied?


Oh, my hands are quite full, sir


Yes, and how can you use your head when hands are so occupied?


I think what you mean, sir, is--


Yes, yes--


You already know how my words finish?

(exit, return with book stack)

How can the head be used if the head, not the hands, are pre-occupied.



That's too much reading.


When I'm not otherwise occupied, sir


You mean, simply a bellboy's avocation


Please sir,

(drops books)

--don't push me into pre-ordained catagories


Probably not all bellboys are equal


Mere catagories, sir

(Others in for books)


What is your catagory?

B: (Pause)

Humm-- Philosophical, perhaps?


I knew it, I knew it-- philosophical bellboy. Nose in a book during moments between assignments


If there are moments between assignments. Which we may well question


Now, for instance


For a truly philosophical bellboy, I think not, sir

(Others in cart, load up B)


Please, please, please, drop all these bags

(Done-- reload)

Wait a minute. I don't even know if these were my bags--


Ah, Nobody knows this, sir


All right, then drop them


Now your hands are unoccupied


Perhaps, sir.


Can we still say "Bellboy?"

Or is it just in the uniform



Do you know that sometimes we don't even wear our uniforms?


I don't want to believe that


Sometimes we carry no baggage at all sir


I don't want to believe that

W: (enters, others to walls )

Let me think about this


What's missing from this picture?


I think I can answer


Well at least make a guess


We're groaping towards the subject of mutual interest, arfen't we.


What's missing from this picture


You mean-- what's the hole in the middle of this particular world?


Why hello, my dear Mr hole in the world--


She recognizes me, whereupon I am indeed glad to re-make the acquaintance of dear madem hole in the world

(They approach, look, kiss as if for the first time. Then stagger to walls. Then she exits inner chamber. It was a great love)


Now. Are you absolutely sure?


Sure about what

H: (pause)

Are you carrying the appropriate suitcases?

(B gets them)

Wait a minute. Have you checked everything?.




Your shoelaces for instance?


Checked my shoelaces? Not recently I suppose


Are they tied or are they untied?


When I checked them, which I didn't? Or when I originally tied them, putting on my shoes. Tied


Still tied?


I have every reason to believe still tied


That means, when you carry the suitcases, your shoes will still be dependable


I should think so


You see? I should think so too


There's poetry in that, sir


Yes there is


I can be travelling to very different places. Shoes well secured to the feet


I think so


But you still think-- checking them again would be in order


Let's satisfy my curiosity


It's quite all right


That's good, sir


I have the feeling that these shoes are so designed-- even if the laces came undone-- the shoe would probably remain in place. On the foot. They might flop about a bit, but they wouldn't fall off.


Then you're in good shape


Yes I am, sir


Shoe-wise, I mean


Shoe wise.

H: (pause)

And otherwise?


Ah. Otherwise

H: (Looks about)

. . . table wise?


Table wise?




May I ask-- do you think we could have a seance using this table?


A seance?


Yes, a seance


I believe just two of us isn't enough, sir


So what. Let's try.

(Table moves by itself to side, scared, other bellbys in)


Well, sir, I suppose that means this table doesn't want to be used for a seance


I don't like --recalcitrant tables


Very well, sir.

(Puts on table cloth, then he is laying some plates, as H out)

That should calm down this very idiosyncratic table. I feel confident.


I've been thinking


Yes sir?


I wonder what that table was afraid of revealing to us.


Maybe, it just wanted to eat something, sir


I'm sorry, but I can't help wondering if there are many things in the universe just like this, of which we know so little


ah, I suppose the universe is infinite, sir


No, I don't quite think so

B: (Open window)

This window you thought was a window onto the outside world ?



Oh my God-- I never even noticed, these window panes are in fact, false window panes

B: (reappear in window)

What do you mean, sir.


Well, it's night, so I couldn't tell thesewindows were black, opaque material, that wasn't real window glass


That's so wrong


Windows are transparent


You can see me, I think? And I'm outside the room.

(climbs in)

What you look through is a window to see me. What's more sir, just by looking at you through a window, I know a great deal about you, sir.


Well-- An infinite number of things?


You jump right out of your skin every time I reappear


No-- I was expecting something something like this to happen

Have we ever been properly introduced--?


That's not necessary


Are you frightened, sir?


A human being has many reasons to be frightened, but I, at least, keep it inside where none of it shows-- so your assumption happen to be true, which doesn't mean I should play along with so I'll just remove myself if I can manage that


This is the only exit for you, sir

H: (Pause)

But it's a window

W: (enters)

Why isn't anybody moving--?


Well, I was concentrating on changing the subject


And somebody set the table

Who's been filling you in?

(Looks back and forth)


I just made an observation.


Look, I don't even know what meal it's set for



(Other pours some cereal)

W: (Pause)

That doesn't seem very appropriate.


All meals are equally appropriate


Come on now-- time for breakfast was gone long ago.


It happens to be my favorite meal


Really? What's your normal breakfast


You can see for yourself


Well,I don't eat that stuff


Come to think of it, how can anybody justify eating that stuff


I don't believe this


You don't think I'm serious?


This is amazing material-- Somewhere inside this perfect grain of wheat, a vast store of energy is waiting to be released into the world.


Where do you get your information?


This is why I have breakfast, many times over. In search of what will never arrive? -- maybe so. But perhaps some day it does arrive; and I'm eternally incapable of recognizing my good fortune fooled.


Here are more wheat flakes for your breakfast, Sir


As you can imagine, I'm never satisfied


You wolf them down enthusiastically nevertheless


Yes I do. Hungry but never satisfied.


Please join me.


Just remind me. What time is it


I know it's evening. But I asked for breakfast nevertheless, because I hunger for the experience of new beginnings --

Maybe that's something special about this particular mouth.


Apparently it wants breakfast


But that desire is not visible. What's visible is what moves as it talks --what it swallows is words.


I had an urge to say "Ah" -- but I decided to swallow my words instead.


This could be important, Is each word spoken, swallowed through speaking


That gives me a funny feeling


It was my idea and now it's your idea


I've been forced to swallow that


It wasn't on purpose

W: (Pause)

Let's never speak about things that are supposed to be hidden


Right. By the saame token, we won't do what we can't help doing.

(Up, hesitate, kiss, )


What I have for you now sir, is a single, administrable, dose of energy

H: (recovering from the kiss)

Of course I remember-- it's in my breakfast cereal


Just a minute please. Allow me to confess what I always hoped to keep secret: I'm a very sloppy eater. What I need is attire that appropriately protects me from that soiling myself as the result of my sloppy eating habits. I'm sorry. I'm really sorry

( B Pulls off cloth, scattering cereal, to put cloth around neck as apron)

Yes. This should do it


I don't understand what's happening

It's simple. He wraps it around my body. Then the food that misses my mouth never reaches the part of me that's underneath

H: (Pause)

Maybe I should go outside the hotel for breakfast


What you mean is I've spoiled it for you

Not completely, bI'm making a quick mental comparison. This room, contricting because of four walls-- and the hypothetical city outside, full resturants with bright windows pouring in sunlight

Could I remind you it's night?


No, even this is solvable. Where can we go that for extra money-- breakfast can be served even at midnight.


I doubt it would work, sir


Why not?


I think part of your imagining is the particular atmosphere of morning. The sunlight, the ambience of a new day beginning--

Don't worry, it never lives up to his expectations



Would you do me a tremendous favor?


Of course I would

You say yes, even without knowing what I'm going to ask?


Can you guess why?


I'm a bellboy


I almost forgot


What cam I do for you?

Could you collect those flakes of breakfast cereal you accidentally scattered over the floor--

I hope you don't plan on eating them, sir

I don't know yet

They've been soiled


I'd like to examine them


That seems fair

(Down on hands and knees)


Careful please! -- there's tremendous energy in each flake

B: (Up)

Take the first few , so you can start examining these, while I continue gathering the others


Just put them on the table, thank you






But I think that 'put them on the table' is all you mean to say. You prefaced it with an extra word, sir


My mouth moves to excess, we've established that-- but it happens in anticipation of energy yet to come

Careful sir-- you yourself said you have no idea what happens next

I'm not in contact with what happens next, so I can't tell you in words-- but I can whirl my body straight into the future


W: (laughs, is dizzy)

You're causing us to lose our train of thought, sir


Speak for yourself


H: (stops)

Come back!


Try to understand, sir-- when I lose my train of thought, it's like losing contact with EVERYTHING ELSE and you can't IMAGINE how irrationally UPSET I GET!


Wait a minute--Are you afraid of me?


I don't think so


This is amazing--


Speaking for yourself, sir? Or for the entire collection of people surrounding you?


I thought I was alone

(enter others)



You are a total mystery to me, sir


Me? How is that possible?


Oh, believe it sir.


It will take much effort for me to believe such a thing.


Not at all, sir. Your suitcases for instance


What about them


What's in the suitcases, sir


Well-- which one?

B: (Many others out)

This one


This is no problem. Certainly I should be able to tell you wnat is in this suitcase


When will this be, sir?


Well. . .When I have opened the suitcase


When will this be


Well,I can't open it without the strength to open it, and I can't open it because it is so strongly sealed that it resists me


Then you are not able to tell me what's hidden inside

H: (irritated)

But I will be able to tell you the very minute I open it!

B: (gently)

But you haven't the strength, sir


Are you implying that with the passage of time you will acquire the required strength


No, I don't imagine I will


There-- you speak the truth, sir.


Yes, that is the truth as I see it

(Pause) --That is then, the truth of this suitcase

My point exactly

(Pause, to drawer) --Here's the key

Thank you

Perhaps I won't open it just yet

That's fine with me

Is it?

. . .I can hardly answer otherwise.

How come there's no radio

Since this is called the Hotel Radio, I would expect there to be a radio


Did you ring?

Yes. Since this hotel is named The Hotel Radio-- I'd expect to have a radio in my room

As far as I know-- there's no significance to the name Radio. It's just the name of the hotel

Yes, but a radio-- should be here. In this room

I don't understand the SHOPULD sir.

The name is the hotel radio

Yes. But you can't see the name from inside the hotel.

I can see it on this piece of stationary. I can see it on this postcard--

There you are

But I can't see a radio

There you are

Can't we do anything about this?




I'm neutral


What I mean is-- whatever gets said in this room, passes right through me. No problem/

(Up to door, bounces off)

No problem?

No problem

But you had a collision

It wasn't willed.

So it wasn't a collision

Can you stop the pain

Why should I do that

It's desirable for me to have pain stopped

Can you locate it

The pain


Not really

But it's pain



Something inside you quivers

Yes. It's resonating

How can I stop what you can't locate

By changing it's location

Ah, I can utilize an imaginary focus

I like that idea


Never mind, little bellboy


Somplace inside me a door must have been left open

(Pause, shuts something)

That's your problem, but it isn't my problem

Don't tell me there isn't a link between us, because if that was true we wouldn't be holding a conversation


A conversation is one escape mechanism I'd rather not use


ow that I'm alone I can tell the truth about things


Well-- about everything but myself

(Gets book. Opens)

My God. This book says it all


What book are you reading


Oh, nothing

Are you trying to hide it from me?

No. I just didn't want to be impolite by seeming to be involved with something else when you came into the room

Instead, you find a different way to be impolite

Tell me, and I correct myself

Show me the book

You probably won't find it as interesting as I did

(Gives it)

(Reads, looks up)

I can make head or tails of this

(Gives it back)

Read it to me

Read it out loud?

Yes. If I hear it, I might comprehend better than just listening


All the words are run together so it's just letter after letter ad infinitum. I don't know how to pronounce that


But you read it to yourself?

Well-- I just projecy into it my own meanings

Ah, you've been keeping secrets


You own meanings

I don't think so

That's why I left a minute ago, and that's why I'm about to repeat myself

What I do is perfectly normal

You get one more chance

To do what?

Time's up

(A brief pause. Goes)

Should I go back to the book? I don't think so. I think I was just fooling myself


Time's up

I didn't expect you

Let me see the book

(Given, puts on shelf)

Now let's see if you can find what I've hidden in plain sight

(Looks around, no success)

Well-- you win

No I don't


I don't know where I put it

(Both close eyes. Whirl)

Well. We thought getting dizzy would help

--But it doesn't

(Both laugh)

I don't know-- maybe it helped

Right. I feel-- a little more normal at least.

(They shake hands)

What's in plain sight that I've hidden?

I have no idea, since it's hidden


I don't miss it

It's in plain sight, but you don't know what it is



I've decided it's that chair

That isn't what I hid in plain sight

Let me correct you. Until I decided to focus on it, it was hidden from me, so the choice was mine

The choice is still mine

Suppose I sit

--That's impossible



I guess anything is possible

Just the opposite

OK. What's the object you hid in plain sight

You won't believe this, but I've forgotten what it was

That's impossoble

You said everything was possible

Yes, it's possible you forgot, but it's also possible that's not true. So I better make an inventory. This chair, that lamps--

Wait a minute


Don't go so fast. Consider the chair before you move on to other possibilities


That's what I hid


The chair

Is that in retrospect

There's no way to avoid rfetrospect, is there

I don't think it was supposed to be avoided

Well-- what then

Just-- retrospect

Hold your forehead


Trust me


Now say 'retrospect'


But say it while holding your forehead

Like this?

Whatever way comes naturally

This doesn't come naturally

Say 'retrospect'

'Retrospect'. But there's nothing natural about this

What do you think it is I hid in plain sight

This chair


How can it be when you already confirmed it

--Do something that comes naturally



(Releases hands, sits back)

At this moment I'm only aware of probably ten per cent of the material that fills this room-- you have a wide open field

I'd say YOU have a wide open field

Whatever you hide-- I decide not to find

Then it stays hidden


That's OK by me

That's OK by me too

but look into the next room



In one, single room, in the hotel radio, I think there's a radio

Is it always in the same room?

I don't follow you

Follow the radio as it moves from room to room

I have no reason to believe it moves from room to room


Let's put it this way. What is broadcast goes to a multitude of rooms and other places. The radio itself is specific in its location

Unless it moves

Is this magic?

Is this divided between part magic and part not


Is this whole building the Hotel radio?

Another way of looking at it--

--Or is only a part of the building such a hotel

--Such a radio.

This poses a mental trap

How appropriate

When I'm trapped, I sparkle.

Yes. Those are the vibs I'm getting



Where do you get vibes

(Slowly, holds head)


I have to suppose so

Check a mirror

I'm not the subject

On and off-- believe me, you're the subject

I'm just passing through

How appropriate-- this is a hotel. You see what that means? Since it's appropriate for a hotel, it fits the definition one hundred per cent that your presence here is a kind of passing through, and since it's such a very good fit, there's nothing TRANSIENT about it. It's once and for always


Where's the radio

--In the Hotel radio?

This is a trap

That has certain advantages


In other words, YOU KNOW, as opposed to a perminent state of being uninformed

I feel uninformed

But that's just a feeling. That's just the result of being someplace where you don't normally belong, so take advantage of the slight disoroentation and pick up on whatever it is that's floating through the air or air-waves and say 'Here I am in the Hotel radio, TRAPPED-- knock knock knock-- look how I sparkle.

(Knock on the door)

Come in


I'm sorry. It's a mistake

Come in anyway


I don't think I'll do that

You see? One thing is proved

What's that

You're REALLY TRAPPED. So why don't we both just hold our heads, and together-- we'll spend alot of time just doing that thing that heads do better than anything else, here--

--I know where

--In the Hotel radio. Hello! Hello! This is the Hotel radio!

You won't believe this of me. I am ruled by emotion

I can see that on your face

My God, I didn't know that

Of course. I can see it in the way you hold your body

My position?

Of course

What is my position


You're asking me to speak about something that escapes anguage

Well, your position is very consistent

I want to make a gift


This is my manuscript, from which I have drained all wisdom

Will I be able to fill it with my own emotions?

When you read it?


Who said anything about emotions

I know, but I can't control them

Well, I don't know if my book will appeal to you

It's what I want



I can't answer that until I've read it

Suppose you found it unreadable

So far, that's true

Here, let me put it in this locked cabinet


This is indeed, food for thought

Then you've misunderstood me completely

Wait a minute-- it was you, that was supposed to understand me.

I know. So let my failure be my failure, and yours-- well, I can't speak to that. I can only register it in my mind and then, once and for all, cast it out

Do I move differently now?

I couldn't say

You had certain opinions about my posture

I still do

What are they


I can't say

I thought maybe--

--I'd change my mind? Yes. but I can't talk about it

What kind of effect does it have on you

Hey-- did somebody say these lips were sealed?

Not exactly

Right. Not exactly. Therefore don't press me, or I'll turn into a whole other person and that will be totally confusing

I don't mind.


Well, responding to that kind of insult, I may just force my way into this cabinet

(Struggles, can't)

It's really strong, isn't it.

I'm just as surprised as you are


Of course

(They embrace)

(Hotel Radio, hello, radio Hotel)

Can I help?

No. But help.

It's one of my favorite words. No. It's my favorite word.

I help whenever I get help

The more times you can use the word help in a sentence, the more it helps.

Help myself

Help yourself

Help yourself to the word help, which is how I help myself


Help yourself to some fruit

I don't think I should eat right now


One of the most potent ideas I ever had, ever, was the idea that in the center of the fruit was a pit, and the pit was the radio in the center of the fruit. And the whole fruit. . .helps, the radio in the center of the fruit.

My ear, helps

My ear was help also

Does this help? My ear helps


Have some fruit please

Eat it, or let it turn into a radio?

Please, have some fruit


Go ahead, reach for some fruitMaybe we'll just listen to some fruit

No, reach for some fruit

(with saw)

This may hurt somebody, but pain is the way in which people acquire knowledge, so hurting isn't what happens. So it won't hurt

I thought you were going to sAw wood, but now that I realize you're going to saw my arm. I'm in the process of detaching myself from that too.

Here it is

(Lifts arm)

Ah, is that another one of my arms?

Yes, the only problem is --it's already been sawed off apparently

You were perfectly right. It didn't hurt

Is this help or is this a kind of torture

I didn't hear you the first time

There was no second time

Then I made a mistake

On purpose


I never know which of my mistakes are on purpose

You mean, an inner voice is guiding you

I don't give it a name

Maybe that's a mistake

If it is, I don't want to be told

You couldn't know if I was right

Oh, I always assume that

It's one of your better mistakes

Or else, it's one of YOUR better mistakes



Wear this


Does it help

It's a kind of turture

You mean it hurts?


Then why is it a kind of torture

I said, a kind of torture

What kind


That was one of my mistakes

Then it isn't torture at all

A kind of productive torture


Think about it, meaning this-- do I attract more of your attention?


Isn't it a little more intense?


Let's say-- I wilt under this intense scrutiny

In that case, I'll offer to take back the robe


Why not

I want you to find out more about me


Just like that


No-- it fuels me

I have no questions to ask you

So I gather. That's why this robe was such an excellent idea

It makes you seem. . .


Well-- substantial

Please. No such wisdom


I've come to a point in my life, after years spent mining nuggets of wisdom

I know

You know?

I had that feeling


After years mining nuggets of wisdom, I say no more wisdom.

It was written.

As opposed to

I didn't say

I know. Not yet

You won't pull it out of me. That's why I like this robe


I can sort of wrap it around myself

I want to hear-- why no more wisdom. Why would anybody reject wisdom

Its a distraction

A vanity

No-- a distraction

From what

We don't know yes, do we.


Do you remember somebody saying-- I didn't hear you the first time


And there was only a first time


There was a distraction, or an attempt at distraction, as always. That's what I reject

You said you reject wisdom

That also

But you didn't reject the robe



I can sort of wrap it around me

Now , reach for the fruit

I can't


I have no magic, no inner drive

Should I put this away?

(Lock up saw)

It doesn't help

What I'm cut off from is the utter bafflement with things that heretofore-- drives me/

You are no longer baffled by things

Right. That's what I've achieved. utter sterility

Well, it's true. Nothing is a mysteru in the face of genuine pain

Shoul;d we get on with the sawing?

Might as well.

The magic of the world no longer exists for me. So. What am I left with. The world

The entire world?


But doesn't the world include the magic of the world? Isn't that part of the world?

Yes. But it is not magic

What is it

It's the world


My position is, the world includes magic

Let's see


It's a matter of opinion


Therefore my opinion exists. So it's part of the world


Right. Magic


No magic

Right. No magic

Please open your heart to me

I just did


I certainly don't know how to deal with that

Could I offer you one of my favorite objects

Which one

Well-- this book

(Given, it falls apart)

It fell apart on me

You can still read it by picking up independent pages

Actually, it's a book I've read

What kind of effect did it have on you

It entertained me

Is that all

Yes. But if I were to re-read it, the effect might be different

That's why it's my favorite

I thought it was perhaps a favorite because it fell apart when you picked it up.

No. It fell apart when it went from my hands to yours


I didn't know what to expect

You still haven't collected the pages


No don't. Leave them there

Then you don't want me to read it after all

You're right. Its as an object its my favorite, not as a book

I've read it

I haven't

It passes the time.

Look into the next room to see the person who I believe is truly beautiful

It is true. But I do not believe the person is as beautiful as you believe she is beautiful

Why is that


It is true, now that I remember again, she is beautiful

Yes. She is truly beautiful

(Both sink to floor. Stretched out)

Why are you both on the floor

We have seen the beautiful woman

Who is that

The woman in the next room


Nobody's there

Then we must have been mistakem

How could you be mistaken about such an amazing thing

This is not something that can be answered

(Bell. Over phone)

Your boat is ready for delivery

There's a problem. My boat is ready for delivery, but it will never fit into this relatively small room

Then you have no choice but to refuse delivery

(into phone)

I'm sorry, but I have to refuse delivery at this time

(Hang up)

Don't feel too sad about this-- we can improvise

Nono-- if it's not the real thing I'm not interested

(Enter, masked, wings?)

Who's this

Don't you realize? This is the beautiful woman we saw in the next room

Can we verify this?

Don't touch her


I think that's true. We mustn't touch her

Then we have no real idea--

Oh, I think we do


I think it was a sign, that there was an attempt to deliver the boat

Are you really sure we shouldn't attempt some kind of mock-up?

How would you go about that


We'd pile all the furniture in the middle of the room

That wouldn't amount to much


We'd set it on fire

And risk burning down the entire house?

It might be worth it

Look-- she's leaving

(She stops. Pause)

Could we--

No, you still don't have permission

(Goes to desk)

What are you doing?

I'm going to write something down


The date

What's the date

Jesus-- I have no idea

Isn't that a little unusual?

Yes. Usually I know the date

Pick a number at random

No thank you. If the date is un-identifable, let's accept that as reality

I'm amazed you agree to something that's so out of character

I fugured it out


I'm surrounded by amazing people

Yes. But which one

(He gets coat)

Hesitating? (He goes. Woman in)

I'd say you're attractive. But your beauty does not overwhelm me

Look again

What do you mean-- look away and then look back a second time?

See? You can't take your eyes off me

(Returns) --Look who's here

Oh course. It's the woman who was in the next room

Right. The one you found amazingly beautiful

I still do (Goes into next room)

Where are you going?

I'm putting away my coat

I hope he's not going to do something foolish

Like what


Don't think I've changed my mind. I still find you amazingly beautiful

Oh, I don't think so

(She turns back to us? mount to throne? (Pause, others stagger)

Oh my God, she's amazingly beautiful

(Music rises, all fall)

I've always been afraid to show my face, out of a terrible fear the outer reality that is me would prove to be but a poor immitation of the inner reality. Or vice versa. . . . In fact, the world is doubly unfair to me. And I take my revenge through pure evil

Just think. I wanted tro be an angel

When was that

I wanted to be an angel


Did you want wings


A halo


Then in what sense did you want to be an angel

I wanted to be. . .molecularly re-constituted

Ok. Drink this

Of course. That's why it's so enjoyable

OK. Back me into your favorite corner

Now there is a whole new set of possibilities

I'd rather know you than get to know you

What's the difference

You don't seriously want to know

Why not

--See? Would you admit-- you've just been backed into a corner?


After a suitable period of ravishing reminiscence, I suddenly realize how important it is to be totally disconnected from all nostalgia, all my most beautiful memories. So I am now ready for anything, really. Purged of all normal, emotional pre-conditioning

I love you

I was waiting to hear that. But now that it's happened, I can truly say, it's like the experience of talking to myself

I love you

I love you

I love you

Are we being equally sincere?

I'm sure. . .that we are being . . .equally sincere

(Both exit) (H bang door)

Excuse me, can I be of any help?

You want help?

Indicate whether or not you want help

You win. No matter what happens, whether or not I respond or don't, because if I respond, no matter how, you'll always be able to maintAin-- ah, that response or lack of response indicates to me that help is being requested

I have no way to effectively proclaim -- no, I don't want help

Even if I left the room-- I could be running away because I don't want to face the fact of my being here because I want help here-- so I doubly need it

Don't run away, sir


There is so much you could teach me if you tried

I have tried

Your example could teach me more than what youe you consciously could teach


I could be totally cartured by your example



That's the word I would use

(Sits back)

OK. I captured you

No, I say you could.



Try being more mysterious. Let the mysteriousness in you be there, without being controlled by all the things you understand or believe in. Just let the mysteriousness come to the surface.


That sounds like a plan of action you could put into practice without my presence; something you could do all by yourself.

No. I'd need you or somebody like you to be the example.


I don't know why. All I know is that the mysteriousness in me doesn't help me. I can't see it-- I can let it out into the world, but then it doesn't effect me. But if it comes through somebody else, and I'm captured by it-- then I'm completely learning something

Well, I'll bear that in mind

Are you serious?

Yes. I'm serious


I'll try to change the way in which I perceive you


I'll try to perceive the mysteriousness in you

Then it's something we'll be doing together


Suppose I agreed to try, without knowing what I meant by saying that.

Yes. I can see the logic in that

What do you think is happening to you?


Maybe a total re-structuring of my personality. Maybe everything that used to satisfy me, now no longer does so

That would be an amazing thing to have happen to one

Yes. Wouldn't it

You really think that's what's happening to you?


I like you

In what way

I just. . .find you very sympathetic

Well. Thank you.

I agree I may have ordered this, but I have no recollection of doing so


Can I tell you the truth


You didn't order this

I think you're just trying to provoke me

That would be acceptable, but it isn;'t the case

I don't follow any of this

You aren;'t supposed to. It's between him and me

But I've never known your memory to be bad

You don't know me that well

We're acquainted

Yes. But not WELL acquainted


Of course we are

Are you truing to provoke me

I think you're suffering from some kind of potentially dangerous delusion

I get it, because twice in a row I accued somebody of trying to provoke me, that's a dangerous delusion

It could be

I have a confession to make



I'm part of a secret group; a group of people who use various techniques that disrupt their own lives

You just told me about it

Did I>?

So how could it be secret

I broke the rules

Inadvertently or on purpose

I have a confession to make


I'm part of the same organization

That must be why I found you congenial

Are you sure I'm telling the truth?

It's a matter of choice

What is

Whether or not I believe you.

Right. Because your memory is bad.

Which may or not be volentary-- but I don't have to tell you that since you're a member of the same organization.

It sounds to me like he doesn't believe you.

What do you think. Would everybody in the organization know about everybody else in the organization?

Probably not

Probably not.

Suppose, just suppose, I assumed the mantle of one who understopod very well, the rules of this particular game

Try to confuse me

I may not be up to that

Why not?

This is something I can't talk about

Why not

I've been pre-empted

By who

It's not a who

What is it that has pre-empted

--It's the sound of my own voice

I thought I recognized that

You did? Then I was right, my friend-- you do indeed lead me into the promised land

In one sense I know what you're talking about

You do?

I do

Outside the rules of the game, there are no rules. In other words there are no rules outside the rules of the game.


Of course, in a sense I know what you're talking about.


I'd like to be alone

Be exact. Say that what you'd really like is not so much to be alone, as to be releaved of my presence

That's true. Your attitude towards me is oppressive

Tha's OK

That's not OK



He went into his room, and shut the door forever

Ah. This is my throne

(Sit, music rise, sleep)

Is that something about the way people die?

No. It's something about the way people come to terms with wanting to go on living.

Once upon a time, this cold and hostile atmosphere would have delighted me.

Ah. I sau 'once upon a time'. That must mean-- now

This isn't once upon a time

Of course it is once upon a time. See how the light bounces off the back of my hand, off my fingers? This is a genuine invitation

To who

Oh, you're not invited-- but here you are.

Can I take my seat at your table?

Tell me again what's already decided.

Here I am.

Once upon a time

What frigid glares you sweep in my direction

What parts of the body pick up on that.

Well, my eyes are well connected

Go on

The eyes seem to spread through some invisible network to all points on the body's surface

So cold means-- cold

Which is a paradox, because cold isn't really visible, just certain conventional signs of coldness

But of course-- one want to feel energized

Try again.

(To wall)

Dod you ever notice that vista?


In my dreams

Ah, once upon a time

(Slaps self)

Wake up

It won't work


Slap yourself again

Then it wouldn't be slapping myself, it would be me responding to your instructions


It would be about a kind of hypnotic behavior

Then somebody better tie your hands to the table, because my powers of suggestion are so powerful it's very hard for anybody to resist

(Other goes, gets rope, ties self)

Enough said

Enough said

Let's get on with the day's activities

(other moves, table moves)

Hey! Nobody said move the table!

Untie me please

No chance

Then I can't perform even the simplest activities without disrupting your equlibrium

Right. Isn't that why I'm here?


Haven't you noticed?



I can get out of this by myself if I choose

(Unties self)

I'm not disappointed

I didn't think you would be

Ah, your understanding of my motives plunges how deep, exactly?

It stops on thre absolute surface

Totally fixated

I hope so

Here's a hint



No. Better not give any hints. You're so very quick to psyche things out, and I suddenly prefer the placid frigidity of total explination.

So: I will now explain my motives.

I don't have any

My hopes--

I don't have any.

My ambitions--

none at all. That's why I like it here. Once upon a time. That's just a perspective on things, you understand.

Once upon a time, a man entered a room

and sat down at a table.

Ah, I've been here before, he said. And in more than one sense, he was telling the truth.

Well, quite enough of an accomplished for one day. So let's see what tomorrow brings. Probably more of the same


Don't you think it's time to shift geers?

(Pause, looks)

Try letting this room, re-constituted, as a perfect image of myself, do the speaking instead of me speaking

Then YOU'D be speaking

Yes. I'd be speaking

But who's speaking now. I mean, when I'm not.

Well-- when you're not speaking, --it's you.

And when I AM speaking?

Well-- at such times, we observe moments of silence


Haven't you arranged for my entertainment?


What am I supposed to do for ther rest of the afternoon

I don't know


What would happen if I made a heartfelt request. Entertain me.



I'm thinking about this. What I'm thinking. . .is that I'd rather be connecting with the universe itself, rather than with one of the universe's representatives

What ytou tell me is unacceptable


What comes pouring out of me is unacceptable. I see.

All power is unacceptable

Let's postulate somebody whi needs help

I can't imagine this catagory

(The sky falls)

Let's say-- nothing happens. Let's say the life is wasted. Let's say it's potential brilliance isn't permitted to flower, the potential flower-like brilliance of this life. My life, for instance.


Does this serve the universe's purposes?

Yes, it does.

This is just what life needs

An implosion

A sinking into itself.

A black hole of a life, overich to the point of self consumation.

Terrible. How can you say that's what life needs? I'd say that drains life of potential and therefore impovrishes life.

But that's what life needs-- impoverishment. And the reason life needs impoverishment is that life is simply a cancerous browith on the beautiful emptiness of the universe. Now think about it. If God had wanted--

Let's leave God out of this.

Oh, I'm just using it as a convenient term

It confuses the issue

I'll drop it



I'm dropping God for your benifit.


Thank you

Whgat I want you to see is this. The created universe seems to be presented to us in two ways at once.

One view-- daily life, solid objects, other persons with personalities, the facts of the so-called world of lived experience.

Second view, laborously arrived at through the evolution of most rigorous human research-- the world as high energy particles that even in themselves don't really exist, but only as potential factors in some grand equasion of possibility-- a world like a net in which the structure is mostly emptiness, and the very net itself-- even that filigree woven on nothingness is in fact-- nothing, but something that seems to arise when two nothings come into momentary conjunction-- like a thought entertained but immediately seen to be inopperable.

Sop-- this is our pinacle of evolved scientific and metaphysical thought-- to realize that everything built-- our human way of flowering being just that-- building-- and everything built from bridges to intellectual systems to recognizable human beings with traits and proclivities-- all this in fact doesn't exist-- is but a fiction, projected construct on a network of underlying non-existing atomic nothings, atomic shadows of potentia.

So-- to withdraw into that nothing by not letting my life flower.

Take one who does the opposite. He compunds the lie.

My point is-- is the universe is constituted this way-- the most profound of human efforts being to discover the non-materiality of all things--

then to flower is to build, is to disguise reality, with the facade of what has been built on unreal foundations. A kind of cancer. This-- human flowering-- a kind of cancer. And that I reject. I rather-- implode. I return the self to its roots. I serve the universe's truth through copntraction, rather than pointless expansion and proliferation.

How do know the universe's purpose isn't precisely the opposite of what you say. Isn't the miracle of building things out of this non-material stuff-- making it flower--

Ah-- you mean the universe's purpose is to lie?

Not to lie: to build. Is it lying to take. . .clay, and make bricks that then make a complex and beautiful building?


Are you thinking about your answer?

No. I have no answer

Then I win

No. I still have my feelings. It's still a hundred per-cent me. All my life-- I too wanted to flower, to build, to contribute. To what end? Now -- at peace for the first time-- I don't want to do any of that

To be blunt-- you've given up


That's your choice


It's sad

Oh no, what it is, isn't sad

Well, we have a difference of opinion

There's no such thing


This is really of no interest to me



Ah. He was here, now he's not here. I hardly notice the difference.

What a peverse man I've become

There is a mystery here

And mysteries. . .should never be solved

What an interesting rule-- possibly God's rule-- assuming we DON'T leave God out of things-- his rule, I suddenly realize or imagine, same thing, his rule must be-- mysteries should never be solved.


Here's something to drink

Not unless I know what I'm drinking

I can't promise

Then I won't drink

Let's just suppose this lable says "I am very good to drink"

It's true, it says, I am very good to drink

In that case--?

Yes, let's try it

(drink, shake (cantrix table'lhote)

This is it, this is what it's all about

This is it

Oh my God, is this behind it all

This is it

He's right--this is as good as it gets, this is it!

meta p.