A Message Left On My
Answering Machine
(Excerpt from the play
‘All The Disciples’)

[female voice] Heyyyeee [pause] Just calling to see what’s up [pause] ouch—hit my toe [breathing] How’s everything? I have work until eight. Oh man, yeah, there’s this guy at the pet store here—he looks like, hmmm [static cracking of phone adjustment] he looks like Abe Lincoln or some shit [pause] Uh so, call me when you get a chance. I wanted to see what you’re doing tonight. Maybe you want to hang out [pause] Huh, looks like Abe Lincoln Guy wants a goldfish. He should buy at least two if he’s going to do it so they’re not lonely. Sometimes people tell me the fish just stop eating when they’re alone. Just, ploop, dead [pause] Ploop. It takes a goldfish a long time to die, for some reason. Ploop. There were some here that just floated sideways for days and days. Ploop. Come on Abe Lincoln Guy, you know you want two—no, don’t put your hand in the tank, ewww his hands are really hairy—god, the hairs are like, floating. I’m fucking bored, oh shit, who’m I talking to? [pause] Oh yeah, hey, call me whenever you get a chance [long exhalation] On my lunchbreak today I tried disappearing beneath a big piece of broken blacktop in the parking lot, but I only managed to get part of my head underneath and the rest of the time I spent digging up little pieces of the grass out front of the store and burying my phone or blaming the ripped up grass on birds, as customers walked in. Ploop. I looked up at the sky like I know I lost something there, but I couldn’t remember what to look for. I was jealous that I lost it and it didn’t lose me. The sky looks like a wonderful place and I am high on being away from you. Don’t call me. Ploop. My apartment will be quiet when I get home. Ploop. Today I’ll get tired. Every human has getting tired in common. There. I feel so compassionate. I’ll go to my room and lay on my bed. And I won’t be upset. Don’t call me. I could understand a god that created me and now doesn’t like me, and hates me. And creates other things that hate me. And for me to hate. I can see making a mistake too. Ploop—