A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Gynecologic Oncology Unit At Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center Of New York City – Monologue (Karla)

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A monologue from the play by Halley Feiffer

KARLA (twenties)

Karla is a stand-up comedian and she is visiting her mom who is sick with cancer in the hospital. While her mom sleeps, she practices her jokes out loud, imagining that her mother—

with whom she has a contentious relationship—is listening to and supporting her.

(reading from a notepad)
“I’ve been single for so long? I’ve started having sexual fantasies about my vibrator.” (Beat.) Now what do you think works better, “sexual fantasies” or “sex dreams”? Or “wet dreams ”?

I actually think “wet dreams” is the funniest option, but I’m worried it might not get a laugh because girls don’t have wet dreams. (Considers this.) Per se … . (Beat.) Yeah, f*** it.

Wet dreams? You’re in. (Scribbles in notepad.) And I have more stuff I could add on to it, too—like I could elaborate even more? Like I could—oh Idunno this is all just im­prov, but like I could be like:

“Instead of a strong, chiseled, oiled-up man throwing open my bedroom door and raping me? I just have vi­sions of like, my vibrator standing in the archway, backlit by silvery moonlight, sometimes wearing a fedora (sometimes not),

and lovingly f***ing me ‘til sunrise.” (Beat.) What do you think of that? That was just improv. (Beat.) Maybe the rape part was a bit much. (Scribbles in notepad.) I don’t know, I kinda don’t think there’s anything fun­nier than rape.

(Thinks.) Okay, well what if I just said something like… “I’m in bed, dripping wet, waiting for my vibrator to come f*** me”? Maybe that’s like—does that kinda take the teeth out of it, though?

Am I being a pu**y? Arghhh, I can never tell if I’m just resort­ ing to being a big, gaping wide pu**y. (Beat.) Or I could even work the rape element into it, but in like a different way—

like I could say something like: “I love getting f***ed by my vibrator ‘cause I know it’ll never rape me.” (Thinks.) Or something like that.(Scribbles in notepad.) How about—ha ha—how about:

“I only rape myself with my vibrator when I’m really angry at myself’? Too much? (Scribbles in notepad.) Okay here’s a compromise: “I only play out my rape fan­tasies with my vibrator, ‘cause I know it will always respect my safe word.”

(Thinks.) It’s still maybe too vague ….

Read the play here

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