Breaking The Leg – “Auditioning For Life”

I don’t want to be unoriginal in my unoriginality, but I also don’t feel much like being original lately. (If you include the Cain/Gingrich debates, there’ve been 3 GOP hopeful debates since November 5. What the heck? Are they even bothering to say anything meaningful anymore?) But rather than drop yet another double post of my Muppets video commentaries, I’ve decided to post the first original dramatic monologue I ever wrote (as I recollect). I wrote it in the months following the breakup with my second girlfriend. Hey… it’s better than emo poetry. (That happened after my first girlfriend broke up with me. I like to think I’ve improved since.) Anyway, the monologue is really too long to be performed feasibly… but I still like it. I mean, it’s my first one. Always have a special spot for the first one.

Without further ado, here is “Auditioning For Life.”

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[Scene opens with a high school teenager one a stage in front of a panel of three sitting judges, of which you only see their backs. The student is about to audition for a college scholarship.]

[Donning an alternate voice, which will slip toward normal throughout the story until the end.] Hello. My name is- Well, my name isn’t very important. Just know that I am the World’s Greatest Actor. [Pause] Oh, you laugh, do you? I can tell you don’t believe me. Well, then. I must do whatever is necessary to convince you. To do that, I will tell you about how I became such a great actor.

You might have guessed, but in case you haven’t, I’ll tell you. This isn’t my regular voice, and- Yes, this pertains to the story. As I was saying. As a child, I adored Mel Blanc. Here was a man who could be so many different people, and no one could guess it was him! So I practiced changing my voice. I’ve become so accustomed to it that I doubt you’ll ever hear me act in my regular voice. Eventually, I realized that I could do the same thing with my personality. So I put on masks, if you will, to please who ever I was with at the time, using a different personality for each person.

…It’s an interesting thing, human nature. I know that I am not unique in my mask wearing, not at all. Most everyone assumes a mask to please people. However, almost everybody uses a mask as a form of defense, to hide their true feelings and their true personality. It also helps hide their weaknesses. And it is a very powerful defense indeed. With a mask, no one can know how you truly feel unless you take it off. Oh, others may ask you to, urge you to, but, in the end, you are the only one who can take it off.

I took off my mask once. Only once. I don’t know why- Heh. Yes I do. I had one reason. I loved her. Oh, yes, I loved her. Many would scoff and say, “You didn’t love her, it was only lust. You were far too young, you couldn’t know love.” I’ll admit, I was young. Only fifteen. But it was love, all the same. I loved her, and she, me. …For a while. For one year, three months, and thirteen days, in fact. [Pause] …You know, I never realized… [Hold up right index finger] One year, [Hold up left index through ring fingers, holding hands close together] three months. Thirteen. [Put down hands] Thirteen days. Again, thirteen. Twice misfortune. It’s almost enough to make me superstitious.

After that period, a period in which I was an overall happy and maskless person, she came to me. And I knew what she was going to say. Even if I didn’t, her words would have stuck with me. She said, “I’m sorry. I don’t love you anymore.” …I wanted to scream, shout, beg! I wanted to say, “But why, why?! Tell me what I’ve done wrong! Let me fix it, let me change it! Please, I love you!” …But I didn’t. I only said, “You know that this will be the last time we talk.” She said she knew. At that, I turned and walked away. I didn’t want her to see my tears. Not because I was trying to be manly, to hide my sadness. There was some sorrow in my tears, but these were not tears of grief. No, these were tears of bitterness, of hate. I did not want her to see my hate, for I still loved her. I only kept walking until I found myself at my residence.

That was when I truly felt the pain. Without my mask, her attack, for that was how I saw it, went straight into my heart. I screamed and cried and thrashed about, like an unearthly beast. I slammed my fists against the walls until my hands were scarred, my knuckles bled, and my blood painted the walls. After the pain of my flesh went numb, I let out the pain of my soul. I cried and cried. For a straight hour, I just sat there, tears streaming down. Finally, when my tears could no longer run without my body becoming dehydrated, I stopped. I stopped crying, I stopped caring… And I stopped loving her. I then put a mask on over my heart, a mask to never come down, a mask to hide the ugliness of what I had become. I later put on a mask of normality, and went on as if nothing had gone wrong.

[Pause, coming out of reverie] That, gentlemen, is why I am the World’s Greatest Actor. At age seventeen, I have put on more fake expressions, pretended more emotions, and used more false personalities to go through life than most professional actors do in their careers. [Laughing] Heck, I’ve mastered more parts than there are people in Les Miserables. [Pause] In fact… In fact, I’ve been acting for so long… I’ve forgotten which part I’m trying to play.

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