Chalk Farm – Monologue (Maggie)

A monologue from the play by Kieran Hurley and AJ Taudevin

MAGGIE (thirty-three)

Maggie lives near Chalk Farm in West London, where a riot has recently happened. She’s worried that her son, Jamie, may have participated in it. 

She works in the claims department at an insurance company, and she is presently dealing with claims as a result of the riot.

Here, she tells of her encounter with a particularly angry claimant.

I get this call through from this woman who’s, like half screaming, half crying. You get that sometimes when they’ve been sitting in a queue for long enough,

you learn to live with it. But it’s near the end of my shift, I’m cream crackered and the woman she comes through all tight,

squeaky voice and shuddery breath and I ask her address and she says 72 Adelaide Road. And I’m asking her what she’s claiming for

and her voice goes even higher and she’s saying she knows who’s smashed her windows. She’s saying, it’s those wasters and pigs over at the Chalcots estate. 

Chalcots. Where my Jamie is sleeping in the little flat what I work and work for to live in a respectable area like what Chalk Farm is.

And my mind is watching over my Jamie’s room, the piles of clothes, the mess on the floor, the window we used to look out of. 

And then her voice starts to shake and rattle like her head’s about to blow off and she’s off on one going

“scum of the earth, pigs, no right to live here amongst good law abiding citizens, should be hounded up

and locked away or worse” and she’s screaming now, proper yelling. 

And all I can see is my little Jamie in dim light with the curtains closed breathing softly like an angel and I’m thinking:

you don’t know. You don’t know him. You don’t know who he is. I see him, I’m his bloody mum alright. And I’m thinking how she’s probably passed me in the street,

she’s probably passed Jamie in the street, and I’m imagining the things she’s thinking as she walks past. 

Swine. Scum of the earth. Pig. Chav. And I’m thinking: well, what if he did do your window in? What if he did and so he should, that’ll f***ing teach you.

So it’s pigs is it? It’s chavs is it, up in Chalcots? Well f***ing fine then, let’s have your windows and the rest of you if that’s how it f***ing is!

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