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A monologue from the play by Anton Dudley
AUNT CRYSTAL (forties – fifties)
Stephen has just told his Aunt Crystal that his girlfriend wants to break up with him. Aunt Crystal is neither surprised nor particularly sober.
Now, Stephen, I’m not trying to slap a label on you, but my husband had a girlfriend and that didn’t stop him from making backend deals with working men on a Thursday night, if you get my entendre?
Bet you didn’t know I was married. Well, I don’t like to talk about it. I sold the ring on eBay and bought new drapes for the breakfast nook. I figured that was worth two decades of sleeping alone in our marital bed on Thursday nights.
I should have known. He liked all those big brassy women with the loud voices. We had them all on LP. They were vinyl in those days. Records. None of this MP3-iTune- Download nonsense. No.
Back in my day you put on a record and hoped it wouldn’t skip! It was the danger made us feel alive. Everything’s so easy nowadays. Yes. In my day men never came out of the closet.
You just had to guess! Even then, when you confronted them with it, they would take a pistol to their skull or at least divorce you and run off to Argentina. Either way you got the house without too much fuss.
But I guess what I’m saying is you never really knew the truth. Everything’s so blatant nowadays; you know, I think it’s possible to know too much? In my day we were content to not get it. We just made do with the mystery.
That was what made us feel alive, knowing it was all unknowable and yet somehow it just continued on. Nowadays we’re so about getting to the bottom of things ‘you need an anti-depressant just to walk across the room!
No, don’t respond. I’m not the best listener, Stephen, no; my philosophy is “Ears are meant for earrings and that’s all she wrote.” Often times, I think lips are meant for lipstick and that’s all she wrote, but my therapist tells me I should talk more.
If I don’t, things’ll fester. I wish the space between my toes could talk, there’s a whole lot festering down there. Still. I like you, Stephen, and I hope that whether or not you stay with your girlfriend, you’ll still find pleasure in the arms of a man.
Lord knows I never did — and your mother? Certainly did not. But someone in this family should. And with things being what they are these days, politically and all – with these new sexual identities being created every day – why shouldn’t it be you?
You’ve got the most up to date plumbing and who cares what you are and who you do it with and when and how and why… who wants to know any of that?!
All I want to know is… could one of us be happy with another? Just once? For just a moment? Ugh! I hate it when the ice melts and then your cognac isn’t cognac, but a spritzer… without the bubbles. Aint that just a metaphor, huh? No bubbles.