Friday, 30 April 2010

Conversation Killer

Midnight.

"I saw Gill Evans today."
"Mmm?" Ali is drifting off and only half listening.
"At the rehearsal. Gill Evans was there too."
"Yeah?...Gill...Haven'tseenher...forages...Howishe?"
"Well. Really well."
"Uhuh..."
"Good night then..."
"Good night."


Mid-morning

"Bill's tied up with his am dram, and I'm left holding the baby, literally. She's teething right now, so will she let me put her down? All bloody night."
"Tell me about it. Freddie grizzled from six till twelve last night."
"Look at them now though, they'll sleep all day if we let them."
"At least we can enjoy coffee."
"True. Here's to coffee." They clink cups and laugh.

Lunchtime

"Ali! How lovely to see you!"
"How are you doing  Gill?"
"Is this Melissa? God she's beautiful."
"Isn't she?"
"I want one."
"There are strings attached..."
"So I'm told, but when they're asleep like this. They're just gorgeous."
"True. So what are you up to these days?"
"Work, work, work. You know me..."
"Yeah."
"I've joined the Crawley Players though. Give me something else to do. Nice to see your Bill there."
"That's right, he did mention it. What part are you playing?"
"Cleopatra."
"I didn't know that."
"Didn't he say?"

Midnight.

"I bumped into Gill Evans today."
"Hmm?" Bill is half asleep.
"She said she was playing Cleopatra."
"So?"
"Aren't you Antony?"
Bill says nothing for a moment and then says, "Did I tell you that Jim's just been made redundant?"


There's nothing kills a conversation more than a non-sequitur.



"

8 comments:

Aislinn O'Connor said...

Oh, dear - sounds like Jim's not the only one who'd going to be redundant...

Excellent story, with all the greater impact for being so starkly told. Love it. :-)

Marisa Birns said...

Loved the way you told the story in dialogue. Quite cleverly done.

And, uh-uh, Jim!

Gracie said...

Ah! Funny how people can forget to tell you things...

I love the whole structure of this one, and the dialogue is brilliant.

Very well done.

J. M. Strother said...

These two really need to work on their marital communications. Sort of like two ships passing in the night. At least now she might see the shoals ahead.

I like the whole structure of this, and how it plays out completely through dialog. Nicely done.
~jon

David Masters said...

I confess I had to look up non-sequitur.

I'm wondering is there an affair in the offing?

Tomara Armstrong said...

It's not lying.. it's just not telling the WHOLE truth.

My Jim had a friend named Andy... who he hung out with all of the time. ESPECIALLY when I was out of town. All was well and good until Andy left a message on our answering machine.

"OH, I thought I told you that Andy was a girl." you didn't.

~2

Tomara Armstrong said...

OH... and I love that this was all dialogue. very cool!
~2

Virginia Moffatt said...

Thanks for the comments.

That's funny David, I had to look up your word, glad we're improving each other's vocabulary!

You're right Tomara, what isn't said is often of vital importance!