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The 15th Line
A Play of Brief Communication
by Jeremy Gable

A NOTE ON TWITTER STYLE

According to its website, Twitter is “a real-time short messaging service that works over multiple networks and devices.  In countries all around the world, people follow the sources most relevant to them and access information via Twitter as it happens, from breaking world news to updates from friends.”

A popular form of online communication, Twitter requires that the user communicate with friends and followers through messages sent from their cell phone and/or computer.  These messages cannot exceed 140 characters at a time.

When one user responds to another user on Twitter, it is marked with an “@”, followed by the person’s user name.  For example...

ANGELA: @dustykinder Do you want to meet for lunch?

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 Only if you’re paying.

ANGELA: @dustykinder Deal. @turnbullseth, do you want to join?

SETH: @angiannini89 @dustykinder  Let’s rock this lunch!

The following performance premiered on Twitter starting January 25, 2010 and ending March 25, 2010.  The following are all of the posts that were posted onto this performance’s Twitter account (which can be viewed at www.twitter.com/twit_play).  Through these 300+ Twitter updates, a story is told and the performance unfolds.


CAST OF CHARACTERS

PATRICK HEARSON, 28, male.  Twitter account: pattycitypress

DUSTIN KINDER, 35, male.  Twitter account: dustykinder

SETH TURNBULL, 20, male.  Twitter account: turnbullseth

ANGELA GIANNINI, 19, female.  Twitter account: angiannini89


SETTING

The story takes place in The City in the Present Day.


ACT ONE: CITIZENS

JANUARY 25TH

PATRICK: Breaking News - Subway accident at 15th St Station.  21 believed dead, 17 injured.  Cause is not yet known.

SETH: Just witnessed a subway accident.  And I just ran away.  I didn’t know what to do.  I’ve never been so scared.

DUSTIN: I keep hearing about this accident.  And Erica’s still not answering her phone. She does this a lot.  I wish she wouldn’t right now.

ANGELA: At the hospital.  No major injuries.  The doctors are calling me a miracle.  A miracle would have been walking to school instead.

DUSTIN: She’s still not answering the phone.  I’m going to the hospital.  I know you hate Twitter, Erica, but if you read this, call me.


JANUARY 26TH

PATRICK: Confirmed - 15th Line subway accident kills 29, injures 22.  Subway line closed until further notice.

SETH: Taking a taxi to school today.  Yesterday keeps playing in my head.  Keep reading about people who stayed and helped.

ANGELA: So...yes, I was in the subway accident.  I’m feeling okay, just really really sore.  I’m leaving the hospital today.

ANGELA: And I can go to class tomorrow.  I didn’t go today.  Or yesterday.  So I probably should.

DUSTIN: Erica’s in critical condition.  Please send her your prayers.

PATRICK: Mayor Hodgins holds press conference; promises a full investigation into 15th Line subway derailment.


JANUARY 27TH

SETH: I am Cheerios, plain and simple.

SETH: I meant to say I am EATING Cheerios, plain and simple.

DUSTIN: I canceled all appointments today.  Erica’s condition is up in the air.  I hate the unknowable.

ANGELA: Dear everyone...Stop asking if I’m okay.  I’m okay.

PATRICK: City Press wants to hear from witnesses of the subway derailment.  Contact me for more info.

SETH: @pattycitypress I saw the crash.  What would you like to know?

PATRICK: @turnbullseth Were you one of the ones who helped out?  Tell us your rescue story.

ANGELA: I totally zoned out in class.  I just sat and stared.  It all sounded like a foreign language.  I don’t know what happened.


JANUARY 28TH

PATRICK: Did President Obama’s State of the Union address help diminish our nation’s fears?  Read our analysis in today’s City Press.

ANGELA: Three days since the accident, and Brandon hasn’t called.  I guess I know now that we’re done.  Cross that loose end off my list.

DUSTIN: I just declined a newspaper interview.  I can’t possibly say anything right now.

PATRICK: @turnbullseth We’d love to hear your story, if you still want to tell it.  You can Direct Message me if you want.

SETH: @pattycitypress No, never mind.  Don’t worry about it.

SETH: Keep hearing about “the heroes”.  What makes these people “the heroes”?  When was being safe not the courageous thing to do?

ANGELA: The newspaper just interviewed me.  Again, the word “miracle” was used.  I’m a miracle.  If only my poo could cure cancer.

PATRICK: @angiannini89  Great interview today, Angela.  Look for it tomorrow.

DUSTIN: Thanks to everyone for all of your prayers.  You can stop now.  It’s all over.

PATRICK: Breaking News - The death toll for the 15th Line subway derailment has risen to 30.


JANUARY 29TH

PATRICK: Read today’s City Press for an interview with Angela Giannini, miracle survivor of first car in 15th Line subway accident.

ANGELA: So, I’m totally a celebrity now.  However, I barely remember the accident.  Come to think of it, I barely remember the interview.

ANGELA: And hey, there’s the text from Brandon!  Funny how the universe works, isn’t it?

SETH: One of the subway crash survivors is in my American Pop Culture class.  Why didn’t I know that?  Oh yeah, because she didn’t tell me.

PATRICK: Check today’s City Press for stories from witnesses of the derailment, including a high school class that helped in the rescue.

DUSTIN: Thanks to those giving love and support.  And to those criticizing me for mentioning Erica’s death on Twitter, leave me alone.

DUSTIN: I’m not saying you’re wrong, but leave me alone.


JANUARY 30TH

PATRICK: @angiannini89  So, did you like the interview?

SETH: I need to do something heroic.  To make up for my cowardice.  Any damsels in distress out there?

ANGELA: @pattycitypress Yep.  It was cool.  Thanks!

ANGELA: Someone just called me a hero.  I’m guessing because I didn’t die.  The definition of hero is pretty broad, huh?

ANGELA: Aaaand someone just called me a prostitute.  It all comes around.  Thanks, Tiff!

PATRICK: @angiannini89 Glad you enjoyed it.  And you are a hero, not a prostitute.  :-)

DUSTIN: A quiet house.


JANUARY 31ST

PATRICK: Transit Authority reports 15th Line subway trains will run tomorrow; cause of derailment is still unknown.

SETH: @pattycitypress  Is there a way to volunteer with the investigation?

ANGELA: Someone asked me why I’m not more affected by the accident.  I dunno.  Anyone care to answer for me?

PATRICK: @turnbullseth  No official call for volunteers yet.  You could give blood at the hospital, perhaps.

SETH: @pattycitypress Okay.  If you find out any way to directly help, please let me know.

DUSTIN: I don’t want to go to work, but I want to do SOMETHING.  How would Therapist Me help Mourning Me deal with this?


FEBRUARY 1ST

PATRICK: 15th Line subway trains are now running while investigation into the cause continues.

ANGELA: Thank god the subways are open.  This whole walking thing?  Not for me!

SETH: Don’t think I’m ready to take the subway just yet.  My funds can support one more cab ride.

ANGELA: Creepy!  The subway station has caution tape everywhere, and it smells like death.  But hey, the subway’s working again!

DUSTIN: I’m going into work today.  I think I can do this.

ANGELA: Okay, what just happened?  I’ve never passed out before.  I woke up on the floor of the subway station.  So weird.

ANGELA: Seriously, I’m really weirded out right now.

PATRICK: @angiannini89 Are you okay?

DUSTIN: I can’t do this.  I’m heading home.


FEBRUARY 2ND

ANGELA: I’m fine, everyone.  I’m fine.  I am fine.

PATRICK: No word yet on whether the groundhog saw his shadow.  With record-breaking temperatures, let’s hope he did.

SETH: @pattycitypress I saw my shadow.  Does that account for anything?

ANGELA: I’m going to Tiff’s party tonight.  Hopefully that will take my mind off of yesterday (of which I’m FINE!!!)

PATRICK: @angiannini89 Glad to hear you’re doing better.

PATRICK: Will this final season of “Lost” answer all of our questions?  Read our analysis in today’s City Press.

SETH: Going to give blood at the hospital today.  I’m getting over my fear of needles.  Let’s make this happen!

DUSTIN: Erica and I watched “Groundhog Day” on this day every year.  I don’t know if I should keep the tradition going.

SETH: Because I spent a summer in England as a kid, Red Cross says I can’t donate blood.  Seriously?  I can’t even donate blood now?

PATRICK: @angiannini89 Have fun at your party.

ANGELA: @pattycitypress Um, thanks.

DUSTIN: I’m watching it.  I think I need this.  Something funny.


FEBRUARY 3RD

ANGELA: Sooo, that party sucked.  I had to talk way too much about the accident.  Oh sweet Yuengling, you never judge me!

SETH: I forgot how good “Spider-Man” is.  Off to rent the rest of the trilogy.  Why can’t I be bitten by a radioactive spider?

PATRICK: Mayor Hodgins to introduce new city budget plan.  More details on City Press website later today.

DUSTIN: Last night was the first time I cried at “Groundhog Day”.  And now I can’t stop.

DUSTIN: This isn’t good.  I’m using up too much personal time.  This doesn’t instill confidence in my patients.

SETH: Okay, riding the subway home.  Wish me luck.

SETH: So, I made it home alive.  Glad to know whatever derailed the train is gone now.

ANGELA: Goddammit!  I just heard the subway from the sidewalk and I started crying.  What the hell?


FEBRUARY 4TH

ANGELA: I got another text from Brandon. I really cannot deal with this right now.

SETH: @angiannini89 Hey, it’s Seth from your APC class.  Noticed you haven’t been lately.  Is everything okay?

SETH: @angiannini89 So, I just went back and read your last few updates.  No answer to question necessary.  Hope you’re doing okay.

DUSTIN: Daytime television is depressing.  I don’t want to be a nurse, and I don’t want to sell my gold for cash.

DUSTIN: Although I don’t know what else I’m going to do with Erica’s jewelry.  I hate looking at it, and I’m definitely not wearing it.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth Ha!  Yeah, I’m already on the road to failing my classes.

DUSTIN: This is ridiculous.  I know that this is ridiculous.  I shouldn’t be sitting here.  I know this.

DUSTIN: And yet, here I am.

PATRICK: Pick up tomorrow’s City Press for a collection of stories from witnesses and survivors of the 15th Line subway accident.

SETH: @angiannini89 Well, if you want a study buddy, just let me know.



FEBRUARY 5TH

DUSTIN: Jesus, the house is a mess.  And I was the clean one!  I’m cleaning the house today.

PATRICK: Yesterday was the coldest February day our city has had in 39 years.  Temperatures will stay steady throughout next week.

DUSTIN: I accidentally broke a plate.  It’s the first time I’ve felt any amount of exhilaration in a while.

DUSTIN: I just broke all of the plates.

SETH: Man, this city is dirty!  Oddly enough, I had to stop riding underground tunnels to see this.

DUSTIN: And I’ve sold Erica’s gold for cash.  Glenn Beck would be proud of me.

ANGELA: So I’ve only been to school eight out of thirteen days so far this semester.  I’ve promised myself that I’ll go on Monday.

ANGELA: But right now, it’s Friday!  And Friday begins with F!  And F stands for Fail!


FEBRUARY 6TH

PATRICK: @angiannini89 Would you be available for a follow-up interview?

ANGELA: @pattycitypress Sure.  Do you still have my phone number? 

DUSTIN: I’m getting ready for Erica’s funeral.  None of this feels real.  I keep hoping she’ll come out of the shower any minute now.

PATRICK: @angiannini89 Actually, I was hoping that this time we might meet in person.  Would tonight work?

DUSTIN: A closed casket is the saddest thing in the world.  I want everyone to leave.  But I can’t say that, can I?

ANGELA: @pattycitypress I’m sorry, but I’m having dinner with someone tonight.

SETH: Totally saved an old lady from drowning!  I’m a hero!

SETH: That is, if you replace “an old lady” with “my popcorn”, “drowning” with “burning” and “hero” with “loser”.

ANGELA: Brandon, where the hell are you?  I’m not eating this dinner by myself.


FEBRUARY 7TH

PATRICK: Who are you rooting for in the Super Bowl?  City Press wants to know!  Reply back with your answer.

SETH: @pattycitypress The Saints.  Or the Colts.  We’re not playing.  Therefore, it’s just a collection of dudes knocking each other down.

DUSTIN: Erica’s mother needs to stop calling.  Now.  Right goddamn now!

ANGELA: Thanks, Brandon!  I give you a chance, and this is what you do!  I want to be stronger!  This is the last time you make me cry.

DUSTIN: I know you lost a daughter, but I lost something worse.  At least it seems that way to me right now.

PATRICK: We’re hard at work confirming rumors of a possible upcoming transit strike.  More details to follow.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth If you read this today, can we get together and review what I missed?

SETH: @angiannini89 Take a guy away from his football?  Just kidding.  I just sent you a direct message with my contact info.

DUSTIN: Nobody try to call me.  My phone doesn’t work anymore.


FEBRUARY 8TH

PATRICK: Transit Workers Union is threatening strike over proposed cuts in public transit safety measures.  No comment from Mayor Hodgins.

SETH: @angiannini89 Last night was fun.  Do it again sometime?

ANGELA: @turnbullseth That would be kewl.  I still think I’m going to fail this class, though.  But whatever.

ANGELA: I can’t believe I’m the type of girl who writes the word “kewl”.  I’m so sorry, Mommy.

DUSTIN: Erica used to try to distract me from the Super Bowl.  Watching it uninterrupted made me realize how boring it actually is.

PATRICK: Pending transit strike, pending budget plan, pending warm weather.  Our city is full of pendings.

SETH: Tomorrow is another study meet-up with @angiannini89, who may just be awesome enough to get me out of my funk.

SETH: And who is able to read that last comment.  And now it’s not deleting.  Crap, I’ve become my parents with technology!


FEBRUARY 9TH

ANGELA: Jesus, can I please have one day where I don’t wake up crying at 3 a.m.?  This is getting ridiculous!

PATRICK: @angiannini89 Anything I can do to help?

SETH: @angiannini89 Do you still want to get together tonight?

DUSTIN: I listen to people waste their petty troubles on me.  but I haven’t met anyone yet who has looked their own mortality in the face.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth You were at the accident, right?  Is it okay if we talk about it rather than study?

SETH: @angiannini89 Just call or text with where and when.

DUSTIN: I got a speeding ticket today.  I wasn’t even aware of how fast I was going until the officer asked.

DUSTIN: Turns out it was 110.

SETH: Transit Authority finally replied to my e-mails: “No further volunteer work needed in regard to 15th St subway accident...”

SETH: “...However, we have several other helpful volunteering opportunities.”  Yeah, I think I’ll pass.


FEBRUARY 10TH

ANGELA: I’m going to take @turnbullseth’s suggestion and talk to other people who were at the accident, or were affected by it.

SETH: @angiannini89 I’m glad to hear it.  And whenever you want to talk, I’m a call away.

PATRICK: @angiannini89 I have a lot of connections to other survivors and witnesses, if you want them.

DUSTIN: I need to stop missing my own therapy.  Otherwise I’m going to end up unloading on my patients.  Like I did yesterday.

ANGELA: Is it bad that this school costs $10,000, and I don’t give a shit about it anymore?

SETH: The city is cold, and everyone just seems so angry.  I wish I could do something to make it all better.


FEBRUARY 11TH

PATRICK: @angiannini89 If you still need any names, just let me know.

SETH: Some jerk just stole five bucks from me and challenged me to a fight!  I’d like to say I victoriously reclaimed my fiver.

SETH: But instead I ran away.  How do guys in action movies deal with the stupid randomness of life?

ANGELA: @pattycitypress If you have it, could you direct message me contact info for a woman who was in the first car named Erica?

DUSTIN: More and more, people’s voices are starting to sound like Charlie Brown’s parents.  “Wah wah wah!”  Shut up.  Just shut up.

PATRICK: Patrick Hearson to the rescue!

ANGELA: @dustykinder Are you the husband of Erica Kinder?


FEBRUARY 12TH

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 Yes, I was.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 Yes, I am.

PATRICK: @angiannini89 Did that info help?

ANGELA: @dustykinder I believe I talked to your wife right before the accident.  I’m sorry for your loss.

PATRICK: City Press wonders...Do you have plans for the upcoming Valentine’s Day?  Write us back and let us know.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 Thank you.  I read your story.  I’m sorry for what must have been a terrible ordeal.

SETH: Can’t get subway fare this morning because of my newly stolen five bucks.  I should’ve stood up for myself.

SETH: Maybe I’m just like everyone else.  Just too scared to interact with everyone else.  Hooray for the modern age, huh?


FEBRUARY 13TH

DUSTIN: I can’t watch “Lost” anymore.  It’s making entertainment out of a horrible tragedy.  There’s nothing entertaining about that.

PATRICK: No comment from Mayor Hodgins on public transit safety measure cuts.  Transit strike looking more like a possibility.

ANGELA: @dustykinder I don’t mean to pry, and I don’t want to bring up bad thoughts, so you can totally say no if you want...

SETH: Maybe the answer is someone who can restore hope in the city.  Someone who can get us to talk to each other again.

ANGELA: @dustykinder ...but would it be okay if we got together and talked about what happened?

SETH: A hero.

END OF ACT ONE


ACT TWO: HEROES

FEBRUARY 14TH

PATRICK: Breaking news - Driver of derailed 15th Line subway train found dead in apartment.  Cause believed to be suicide.

PATRICK: Also, Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!

SETH: @angiannini89 Sorry if last night was weird.  I don’t normally do that.  I was on a bit of a natural high last night.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth It’s okay.  I just need some time.  Anyway, we shouldn’t talk about it here.

SETH: @angiannini89  Oh.  Right.  Sorry.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 I guess we could meet.  I don’t know what help I could be.  Did you have a date in mind?

PATRICK: @angiannini89 So, do you have any plans for Valentine’s Night?

ANGELA: @dustykinder How about tonight?

ANGELA: @pattycitypress  Sorry, I have plans.


FEBRUARY 15TH

SETH: Spent my Valentine’s Day coming up with a plan.  You’ll all find out about it soon.

DUSTIN: I actually made some human interaction last night.  I’m proud of myself.  You should be, too.

ANGELA: @dustykinder I’m proud of you.  That was a nice chat.  If you ever need to talk again, just call me anytime.

SETH: This design is flexible, warm and hard to spot in shadows.  It’s perfect.  Now how do I make it?

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 Thanks.  I might take you up on that offer.

PATRICK: A transit worker strike would affect 5,000 employees and 850,000 commuters.  Read today’s City Press article for more information.

SETH: Off to do research.


FEBRUARY 16TH

PATRICK: Coroner confirms that the driver of 15th Line subway derailment committed suicide.  Workers Union close to striking.

SETH: The city is terrifying at night.  I have a great deal of fear to get over if I’m going to make this work.

ANGELA: If I’m having trouble eating, what am I throwing up?

ANGELA: And why can I not stop thinking about the accident when I barely even remember it?

ANGELA: I’ve never considered therapy before.  But then again, I’ve never randomly cried an entire day for no reason.

SETH: If Half-Life taught me anything, it’s that a crowbar is an excellent weapon.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 If you need therpy, you know a great therapist.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 By that, I meant me.  Also, I don’t know what “therpy” is.


FEBRUARY 17TH

ANGELA: @dustykinder If you’re willing to cut me a break financially (poor student and all), I’d consider it.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth Hey, are we still study buddies?  I have some massive catching up to do.

PATRICK: Transit Workers Union will strike at midnight if safety measure cuts are not eliminated from proposed city budget.

SETH: @angiannini89 Yeah, definitely.  Just say where and when.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89  I can discuss a discount program.  Call my office to set up an appointment.

SETH: Really hoping a transit strike doesn’t happen.  Why can’t the world revolve around me just once?

SETH: Waiting for @angiannini89 at Starbuck’s.  This vanilla bean frap isn’t going to drink itself.  *TWIDDLES THUMBS*

ANGELA: @turnbullseth Crap!  I’m on my way!  Worst study buddy ever!


FEBRUARY 18TH

PATRICK: All subway, bus and trolley lines are closed today, due to Transit Workers Union strike.

SETH: Shit.

SETH: @angiannini89 My profanity was referring to the transit strike.  Not last night.  Last night was great.

SETH: @angiannini89 By the way, I think I left my phone at your place.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth  Direct message me!  Don’t talk about it here, please!

SETH: @angiannini89 Yeah, I’m dumb.  Sorry.

DUSTIN: Is it stupid of me to consider a seance?  Frankly, anything that would let me talk to Erica again would be worth it.

ANGELA: Please leave my personal life alone, everyone.  It’s called a personal life for a reason.

PATRICK: @angiannini89  So I shouldn’t run tomorrow’s article about your personal life?  Ha ha!  Just kidding.


FEBRUARY 19TH

PATRICK: How are you getting around during the transit strike?  City Press would like to know.

SETH: @pattycitypress  Rickshaw.  It creates jobs, helps boost the economy (actually, taxicab and good ol’ walking).

SETH: @angiannini89 If I haven’t stuck my foot too much in my mouth, can we meet again tonight?

ANGELA: @turnbullseth  Sure.  Did you get that, everyone else?

DUSTIN: I called a psychic, but hung up when he answered.
 You think I’d be smarter than this.

DUSTIN: Maybe not smarter, just less desperate.  But I guess not, huh?

SETH: Sewing is not easy.  I guess that’s why they invented a machine.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth Stop before you hurt yourself.  I’ll come by and help.  Because I’m womanly like that.


FEBRUARY 20TH

SETH: @angiannini89 You look beautiful today.  Just so you know.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth Yeah, you’re a dork.

SETH: @angiannini89 Guilty...as...charged.

PATRICK: Transit Authority says derailment was driver error.  Transit Workers Union claims poor equipment maintenance.  What do you think?

DUSTIN: I cannot be driven by the desire to see my wife again. 
And yet, I keep watching our home videos.

DUSTIN: I was told there’s never a reason to re-watch your wedding video.  Well, I found one.

DUSTIN: This is a bad idea.


FEBRUARY 21ST

PATRICK: Our poll shows commuters overwhelmingly blame the driver for the 15th Line derailment.  The investigation is still open.

DUSTIN: So, I just realized there are no buses on the streets.  No one told me about the transit strike.  I’ve really been out of it.

SETH: The outfit is finished.  I look ridiculous.  But I guess that’s the point, isn’t it?

ANGELA: @turnbullseth Wait, were you serious about what that was?  Um...wow, getting ready for Halloween early?

SETH: @angiannini89 Yeah, something like that.


FEBRUARY 22ND

SETH: I walked by striking transit workers.  They are damn brave to endure this cold all day long.

ANGELA: Off to my first therapy appointment.  I’ve never been good at talking about my problems.  So this should be a blast!

PATRICK: Another day of record-breaking temperatures.  Also, Fox News declares global warming a scam for record-breaking number of days.

SETH: Talking to the transit workers made me realize that I’m on the right track.  The city needs to be cleaned up.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 So, pretty painless, huh?

ANGELA: @dustykinder Yeah, my hair and teeth remain mostly intact.  That Cognitive thing should really help.  Next week?


FEBRUARY 23RD

PATRICK: Read today’s City Press update on the survivors of the 15th Line subway derailment.

ANGELA: @pattycitypress Um...what the hell was with that article?

PATRICK: @angiannini89 You didn’t like it?

ANGELA: @pattycitypress Did you really have to tell the entire city that I’m going to therapy?  That I’ve been to once?

PATRICK: @angiannini89 I’m really sorry about that.  Can I buy you lunch to make it up?

SETH: I think I’m ready to test it out.  Tonight’s the night!  Wish me luck!

DUSTIN: @pattycitypress I believe that you need to print a correction.

ANGELA: This day sucks.  I’m done with this day.  Goodnight, day!


FEBRUARY 24TH

PATRICK: Go to the City Press website for a retraction of yesterday’s article about the 15th Line subway derailment survivors.

ANGELA: @pattycitypress  Thank you.  And yes, you can buy me lunch.

SETH: So I patrolled the streets last night.  I didn’t come across any crime.  Maybe I’m not as needed as I thought.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 So, are we still meeting tomorrow?

ANGELA: @dustykinder Sure.  Otherwise, we might keep the entire city in suspense.

ANGELA: I'm having a patty melt with @pattycitypress. And don’t think he's not making the most out of that pun.

ANGELA: Sooo, heading home.  Feeling weird now.  Thank god for short lunches.

SETH: Trying again tonight...after making adjustments to this outfit.  Either that or chop off of my shoulders.


FEBRUARY 25TH

PATRICK: @angiannini89  Thanks for the patty melt with the Patty me!

ANGELA: @pattycitypress Never gets old.

SETH: So I didn’t stop any crime last night.  But I did defend myself against two guys who tried to beat me up.  So that’s progress.

SETH: But then again, they were really drunk, so I did have the upper hand.

DUSTIN: It’s enlightening to talk to someone who actually has a great deal of weight on her mind.  And in her mind as well.

ANGELA: @dustykinder The confidentiality’s sweet, but I think the entire Twitterverse knows that it’s me.  We’re amongst friends.

SETH: Patrolling again tonight.  I’m starting to think I’m just a moron in a costume.  Insert your own joke here.


FEBRUARY 26TH

SETH: Yes!  Victorious!  I actually saved someone getting mugged last night!  But then they ran away.  But still, SUCCESS!!!

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 Ah, I didn’t realize that we’re all family here.  Nice to meet you all, random strangers.

PATRICK: Mayor Hodgins says transit safety measures will be re-evaluated in city budget.  No word on when strike will end.

PATRICK: @angiannini89 So, lunch.  You and me.  I won’t take no for an answer.

ANGELA: @pattycitypress I’m sorry to give you the answer you won’t take.  I’m meeting with my Study Buddy tonight.

SETH: @pattycitypress Yeah, she’s with me!  In a way that isn’t really with me.

ANGELA: Can I stop being owned by people?


FEBRUARY 27TH

PATRICK: Mugging last night stopped by masked man spotted prowling around South neighborhood, not connected to city police.

SETH: I’m famous!  I should come up with a name.

SETH: The Tunneler!

ANGELA: I really hate not waking up in my own bed.  I know whose room this is, but my brain is not comprehending these four walls.

SETH: @angiannini89 It’s the Papa Roach poster, huh?  I’d defend it, but there’s no goodly reason why I still have it on my wall.

SETH: The Roacher!  The Exterminator!  The Papa?

ANGELA: @dustykinder Hey, I know I don’t have an appointment today, but can I still come by?

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 I get off at 4:25.  Swing by.

SETH: Okay, so every possible name sucks.  Maybe I’ll just be a nameless shadow.

SETH: The Shadow!

SETH: Wait, already taken.


FEBRUARY 28TH

ANGELA: I really want to be friends with my therapist.  So I don’t think I get the point of therpy.  Still, he’s keeping me sane.

SETH: @angiannini89 I’m not doing that?

ANGELA: @turnbullseth You leave in the middle of the night wearing a weird costume and carrying a crowbar.  So...no.

PATRICK: More reports of the crime-fighting masked man wielding a crowbar.  Have you seen him?  If so, tell us where.

SETH: Is the newspaper guy not following me anymore?  I can’t believe my loser alter ego hasn’t been revealed yet.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 I’m not going to live down the “therpy” thing, am I?  Not cool.  Funny, but not cool.


MARCH 1ST

ANGELA: I’ve been remembering more of the accident lately.  I can’t even use the word scary.  It’s too trivial of a word.

SETH: Amazing how easy it is to stop crime.  So far, guys just run away when they see me.

SETH: A subconscious reaction from growing up in a comic book driven society?  Or just being freaked out by a man in tights and a mask?

SETH: Also, a lot of people want to shake my hand.  I could really get used to this.

PATRICK: Overwhelming community anger over the transit strike grows.  Many striking workers met with shouts and threats.

PATRICK: @angiannini89 So, what does a guy have to do to see you again?
   
DUSTIN: I only have three photo albums and one video of me and Erica.  Just a handful of memories to last me the rest of my life.


MARCH 2ND

PATRICK: Eggs, shoes thrown at striking transit workers.  Transit Authority calls for police protection.

ANGELA: So, the fact that I was standing on the subway train may have been what saved my life.  I remember planting my feet on the wall...

ANGELA: ...because the train was turning over.  There was a lot of noise, both from subway and passengers.

ANGELA: I was the only one who was standing, and I was the only one who survived in my car.

ANGELA: @dustykinder God, I am so sorry for what happened to Erica.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89  Thank you.  Having you around is making everything a little easier to tolerate.

SETH: Everybody’s angry with the transit workers.  But they’re just looking to be safe.  They need protection.

SETH: They need a hero.


MARCH 3RD

SETH: Taking the day off school and providing protection for the transit workers. I haven’t done daytime work yet. Should be interesting.

PATRICK: Councilwoman Anna Cerne and Masked Man join the transit worker strike.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89  I realize yesterday’s update might have been a little weird.  My apologies.  I shouldn’t have smoked all that weed.

ANGELA: @dustykinder  Wait, really?

DUSTIN: @angiannini89  No.  Sarcasm doesn’t work in text, does it?

SETH: These people are amazing!  And the assholes stop yelling when I come around.  My reputation is preceding me.

ANGELA: The guy I’m kinda-sorta-not-really seeing is on the news in a superhero outfit.  Yep, this is where my life is right now.

PATRICK: @angiannini89 Wait, THAT’S who Masked Man is?  Wow, I suddenly feel a whole lot better about myself!

SETH: Is Masked Man my name now?  That totally blows!  I could’ve come up with Masked Man.


MARCH 4TH

SETH: So, “Masked Man” is making another appearance at the workers strike.  Seriously, I can’t come up with my own name?

ANGELA: Last night, I dreamt a woman was staring at me, and what I can only describe as brain fluid was leaking out of her nose.

ANGELA: I woke up and realized that I had seen that right in front of my face a month ago.  How do I make this go away?

SETH: That’s right, suckas!  You keep running!  They say they’ll be back, but I’m pretty sure it’s just jibba jabba.  Foo!

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 I had an appointment cancel if you need/want to stop by.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 But if you don’t need/want to, I completely understand.  It’s your call.

PATRICK: Mayor calls off police protection for striking transit workers, despite pleas for security.


MARCH 5TH

ANGELA: Okay, these dreams need to stop!  I don’t want to see bone sticking out of skin!

ANGELA: Why wasn’t there anything wrong with me?  Why did I survive?

SETH: It’s much quieter at the strike than the last couple days.  I think I’m really making a difference out here.  It feels nice.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 It was good to see you again yesterday.  I hope I was able to help.

ANGELA: @dustykinder Totally.

ANGELA: @dustykinder So, you have the day off, and I don’t have your home number, and this may totally be breaking every rule, but...

ANGELA: @dustykinder ...can I see you?  Not as a patient, but as a blip on the radar of your non-professional life?

PATRICK: Breaking News - Striking transit workers attacked by violent group.  More details to follow.

PATRICK: Breaking News - Police have been called in to offer protection to striking transit workers.

PATRICK: Breaking News - Riots have broken out at 15th St station between transit workers, police and angry commuters.

END OF ACT TWO

 
ACT THREE: VILLAINS

MARCH 6TH

PATRICK: In the wake of riots, strike is settled between City Hall and Transit Workers Union over the night.  Transit lines will open today.

SETH: Today’s my sister’s birthday.  I celebrated by telling her how I got beat up in a riot yesterday.  Happiest of birthdays, sis!

DUSTIN: On the long list of mistakes I’ve made in my life, last night was by far the worst.

ANGELA: @dustykinder I’m sorry.  That was my fault.  It was a stupid suggestion, and led to some bad decisions on my part.

SETH: @angiannini89 Wait, what happened?  Call me, please.

SETH: Ass kicked.  Heart broken.  My city and my girl both betrayed me.

SETH: But then again, isn’t that supposed to be part of the superhero story?

PATRICK: @angiannini89 So, is it over between you and the superhero?


MARCH 7TH

PATRICK: All public transit lines are open today, putting an end to a record 17-day strike.

DUSTIN: I have never done this with a client before.  This goes beyond unprofessional.  I don’t know what to do from here.

PATRICK: Read today’s City Press for a profile on Seth Turnbull, a.k.a. Masked Man.

SETH: @pattycitypress Hey, thanks for showing me for the loser that I actually am, dude!

SETH: Well, there goes my Marvel franchise.

ANGELA: It’s time to crawl back into my hole.  Why did I ever leave in the first place?

DUSTIN: I am considering resigning.  This is what one does in these situations.  At least, so Nixon taught me.


MARCH 8TH

PATRICK: @turnbullseth Was there something you didn’t like about the article?  I didn’t print anything untrue.

PATRICK: Weather is finally warming up after a wave of record-tying/breaking temperatures.

SETH: When I’m not sore anymore, I’m going get back in the game, and try not to let the way-too-honest article get to me.

ANGELA: @dustykinder Don’t you dare resign!  Seriously, I will hate you forever if you throw away your career over this!

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 I already threw away my career.  That broke all professional protocol and betrayed my marriage.

ANGELA: @dustykinder I am so sorry for what I did, but let me be the one to be punished, not you.

SETH: @angiannini89 So, can we get together and talk about what’s going on?

ANGELA: @turnbullseth I don’t even know what’s going on myself, but yeah.  Can I come by tonight, or will you be out fighting crime?

ANGELA: That was the weirdest question I think I’ve ever asked.


MARCH 9TH

SETH: Sorted some stuff out last night with @angiannini89.  Don’t know how long it will take to get back to normal.  C’est l’amour!

SETH: Well, not l’amour.  More like l’a-like.

DUSTIN: I put in my two weeks notice today.  My resignation is official on March 23rd.

ANGELA: I hate this.  I hate this so much.

SETH: @angiannini89 Look, I’m sorry I said “l’amour”!

SETH: @angiannini89 I just realized what you were referring to.  Just ignore me.

PATRICK: @angiannini89 If you need anyone to talk to, I’m here.  I promise it’ll all be off the record.

DUSTIN: Quiet house again.  The year has barely started, and it’s already a resounding disappointment.


MARCH 10TH

ANGELA: Wow, can I re-do this semester?  This ranks in the top one worst couple months of my life.

PATRICK: @angiannini89 I’m sorry to hear that.  Can Patty me buy you another patty melt to cheer you up?  Just let me know.

SETH: Okay, tonight is the night.  Back on the streets, fighting the good fight.  But first, a LOT of stretching.

DUSTIN: I feel like I’ve let everyone down.  And I mean literally every single person that I’ve come in contact with lately.

ANGELA: @dustykinder You haven’t let me down.  If anything, it’s the other way around.

SETH: Okay, kids, I’m off.  Tony Stark revealed that he’s Iron Man, and that doesn’t stop him from kicking global ass.

SETH: But then again, he did build an amazing multi-function suit.  And he’s charming.  And he’s filthy rich.

SETH: And he’s not real.


MARCH 11TH

PATRICK: Transit Authority inconclusive as to the cause of 15th Line subway derailment; investigation ends with no conclusion.

SETH: Well, that didn’t work out so well.  Second time in one week I’ve been punched in the face.  Thanks, @pattycitypress!

PATRICK: @turnbullseth I don’t know that my article is to blame.  You didn’t keep the city safe last night?

SETH: @pattycitypress Nope.  Because nobody’s threatened by an English major wearing lycra.  All my mystery, intrigue?  Gone.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth  Rest assured, Seth, you threaten me all the time, with or without the lycra.

SETH: @angiannini89  Wow, check out that sense of humor!  Welcome back to the world of the living, darling.

DUSTIN: I’ve been spending all day telling my patients to seek new counseling.  Perhaps the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do.


MARCH 12TH

PATRICK: The strike is estimated to have cost the city $400,000 a day.  Is it easy for commuters to forgive and forget?

ANGELA: @dustykinder  Please answer my calls.  You can’t just cut someone off in the middle of CBT.  You at least owe me that.

SETH: Hey, assholes at school...Yes, I tried to be a superhero.  Yes, I’m back to being a loser.  Can we all get over it now?

DUSTIN: @angiannini89  I think it’s best if we just don’t communicate for a bit while I figure stuff out.

ANGELA: @dustykinder  Well that’s tough shit, because I’m still your friend, and you can’t get rid of me.  So deal.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89  Look, I just need to be left alone to figure stuff out.  I have referrals for your CBT that will be able to help.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 Please, do this for me.


MARCH 13TH

SETH: @angiannini89 You weren’t at class yesterday (shocking!) so I took some notes for you (shocking again!)

ANGELA: @turnbullseth Thanks.  I’ll come by.

SETH: I have no super-awesome mechanical suit, no amount of wealth and no Downey Jr.-like looks or charm...

SETH: ...but I do have Angela in my life, and she makes Gwyneth Paltrow seems like a troll.

DUSTIN: I’m taking a break from socializing for a while.  I need to get some things straight.  Sorry, people who don’t really care.

ANGELA: Okay, I’m riding the subway today.  I’m over this shit.  I’m getting back to normal.

ANGELA: There!  I owned that subway train!  My war flashbacks were minimal, and I dealt with it.  Suck it, PTSD!

PATRICK: @angiannini89  Congratulations!  Can I buy you dinner to celebrate?

ANGELA: @pattycitypress Thanks for the offer, but I really don’t think it’s a good idea.  The whole journalist-subject thing.


MARCH 14TH

PATRICK: @angiannini89 Okay, I’m just going to show you all my cards.  I like you a lot.  You’re beautiful and an amazing person...

PATRICK: @angiannini89 ...and I think we’re really compatible, and I can offer you much more than other guys.

SETH: The hell is that supposed to mean?

PATRICK: @angiannini89 I really think we can make this work, if you’re willing to give me a chance.

ANGELA: @pattycitypress  Seriously, I’m not interested in a relationship right now, and I just need you to leave me alone right now.

ANGELA: @pattycitypress I hope you can respect that.

SETH: I feel like I’m watching a really awkward situation.  I feel even worse about eating popcorn while watching.


MARCH 15TH

PATRICK: @angiannini89  Seriously?  You sleep with your therapist and that stupid superhero guy, but you won’t give me the time of day?

SETH: @pattycitypress First off, stay out of her personal life.  That is a really low blow and I’d like to think you’re better than that...

SETH: @pattycitypress And secondly, I’m a stupid superhero IMPOSTER.  Check your facts.

PATRICK: @angiannini89 @turnbullseth My point exactly!  This guy?  This guy???

ANGELA: @pattycitypress  Okay, you really need to back off right now.  This makes me not want to see you.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth Funny, but you’re not helping.

SETH: I need to stop getting so much enjoyment out of this.  I need to get back to having a life.  Maybe join some sort of group?


MARCH 16TH

PATRICK: @angiannini89 If you’re already not wanting to see me, how does what I said change anything?

ANGELA @pattycitypress I promise you, I’m a mess right now.  Unless you’re a specialist in Cognitive Behavior Therapy, I’m not worth it.

PATRICK: @angiannini89 I’m sure that’s not true.  Besides, is @turnbullseth really getting you through therapy?

SETH: @pattycitypress @angiannini89 Sexual healing.  It’s good for her.  Makes her feel so fine.  It’s such a rush.

PATRICK: @turnbullseth That’s just inappropriate and degrading.

SETH: @angiannini89 More than telling the entire city that she’s in therapy?  Your move, bitchlicker!

PATRICK: @turnbullseth I printed a retraction to that article, asshole!

ANGELA: I just need to look toward my goals today.  I can deal with all of this crap if I just look toward my goals.

ANGELA: What are my goals?


MARCH 17TH

PATRICK: Happy St. Patrick’s Day (or St. Me’s Day)!  Check out City Press website for a list of events throughout the city.

PATRICK: @turnbullseth My employers told me to apologize for yesterday’s remarks.  Consider this my official retraction.

SETH: @pattycitypress Oh, all hail the Mighty Retractor!

SETH: @pattycitypress I’m caught in your retractor beam!

SETH: @pattycitypress I drove a re-tractor at the re-farm!

ANGELA: @turnbullseth Wow, getting started on the festivities early?

SETH: @angiannini89  Ty-tee-ty-tee-ty!!!  Why aren’t you here?

ANGELA: @turnbullseth I’m not feeling up to loud noises or crowds.  I promise not to take your lucky charms.

ANGELA: I’m stuck between a stalker and a leprechaun.


MARCH 18TH

PATRICK: Stay tuned to City Press website for an interview catching up with subway derailment miracle survivor Angela Giannini.

PATRICK: @angiannini I don’t think you should turn down my interview.  You don’t want to disappoint the readers.

ANGELA: @pattycitypress That’s an asshole move!  I don’t care about your readers!  I’m not talking to you!  Please leave me alone!

SETH: @pattycitypress Oh hey, you dropped this.  Here you go.  It looks like a clue.

PATRICK: @turnbullseth Shut the hell up!  This doesn’t concern you!

SETH: @angiannini89 Hey, does this concern me?

ANGELA: @pattycitypress @turnbullseth Can both of you please just stop it???

SETH: @angiannini89 Sorry.  You’re right.  I’m sorry.


MARCH 19TH

PATRICK: Check out City Press blog for an honest profile on “miracle” Angela Giannini and “superhero” Seth Turnbull.

ANGELA: @pattycitypress You made me out to seem like a slut!  What the hell is your problem?

SETH: @pattycitypress Are you even allowed to say “asshole” on a news blog?  And no, I don’t live with my parents!

DUSTIN: @pattycitypress Patrick Hearson, my name is Dustin Kinder, and I’ve been a reader of the City Press since I was a kid...

DUSTIN: @pattycitypress ...I have always enjoyed the comprehensive and detailed coverage that the Press gives to the city that I love...

DUSTIN: @pattycitypress ...but your juvenile antics may have reversed 129 years of award-winning journalism. I have known Angela Giannini...

DUSTIN: @pattycitypress ...for over a month, and in that short time, I’ve known her to be a person in need, dealing with a great amount...

DUSTIN: @pattycitypress ...of sadness and fear over her unimaginable experience, but still filled with unending compassion...

DUSTIN: @pattycitypress ...and caring for her fellow man.  For you to degrade her simply because she won’t date you is not journalism.

DUSTIN: @pattycitypress It is gossip, which is below your profession.  As for Seth, while his story may be an easy target for jokes...

DUSTIN: @pattycitypress ...he’s done a great service to this city by trying to fill it with hope.  I think you should look in the mirror...

DUSTIN: @pattycitypress ...compare yourself to these two fine people, and realize that the only human thing to do at this time is resign.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89  By the way, I’m back.

SETH: @dustykinder *CLAP* ....... *CLAP* ..... *CLAP* ... *CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP*


MARCH 20TH

PATRICK: @dustykinder Well, you don’t have to worry about me resigning.

PATRICK: After today, the City Press will no longer be in need of my services.

ANGELA: @dustykinder Did you figure everything out?

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 Not even close.  But I no longer taste the gun barrel in my mouth.  Which is a step in the right direction.

ANGELA: I’m re-thinking this whole living in the city while going to school thing.  It’s time to figure out what to do with my life.

SETH: @angiannini89  Can we talk about this tonight?  I’ve been feeling the same thing.

SETH: I realize that I’ve never truly thought about my future.  Like, REALLY thought about it.

SETH: Great, @angiannini89, now you’ve got me thinking!  This is not a brain that likes to think!


MARCH 21ST

SETH: Had a long talk with @angiannini89 last night, and it’s been decided.  I’m doing the Peace Corps.

SETH: Also talked to my parents.  Dad actually seemed impressed with my superhero antics.  Mom just thinks I’m wasting my tuition loan.

SETH: Which I guess I am.

PATRICK: I have made every phone call I can.  No one’s hiring.  Newspapers have taken a real nose dive over the last few years.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 Did you contact Dr. Wheeler?

ANGELA: @dustykinder I did.  She’s fine.  Not as good as you were, but she’s helping.

SETH: It looks like I bombed today’s exam as well.  So I think this whole higher education thing isn’t working out so well.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth At least you showed up.  I probably couldn’t even find my way to the school any more.

DUSTIN: I’m ready for my last week of being a licensed therapist.  Today is the first day of the rest of I’m such a cliche.


MARCH 22ND

PATRICK: I don’t know what I’m going to do.  There’s no way I can get hired by anyone.

PATRICK: And I have no idea what else I can do as a profession.

PATRICK: But hey, at least I’ll have health care.  Right?

ANGELA: Is it better to stick it out and bumble through my education, or to be a quitter and take care of whatever’s bugging me?

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 I’m sure that Dr. Wheeler is doing a great job.  But I know that CBT is not really her area of expertise...

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 ...so I can still meet with you if you want.  Just some freelance consultation.

ANGELA: @dustykinder Let’s talk about it.

ANGELA: Screw it, I’ll be a quitter.  School’s not going away.  And I need to figure out what I’m doing.

SETH: I just applied for the Peace Corps, hoping for Community Development in Eastern Europe.  Now comes the nine month wait.

SETH: Maybe I don’t need to be a hero right now.  Maybe I can just try to be a human being, and that will be enough.


MARCH 23RD

ANGELA: My parents did a good job hiding their disappointment in my deciding to drop out.  They understand the accident did a number on me.

ANGELA: I don’t think my survival had anything to do with fate.  I think it just happened.  Just luck.  I’m lucky.

ANGELA: I really am.

DUSTIN: I’m taking a trip to London next month.  Erica was born there, and wanted to take me.  I guess, in a way, she is.

ANGELA: @dustykinder  I really hope you enjoy yourself.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 I think I will.  It may be the first time I enjoy something in quite a while.

PATRICK: This blows.  I don’t know what I’m going to do.  I wish I hadn’t ruined my life over this.

SETH: @angiannini89 So, have you given any thought to the Peace Corps?

ANGELA: @turnbullseth I don’t know yet.  I probably should, but I just don’t know.  Can we talk tomorrow?

SETH: @angiannini89 You got a small window of opportunity, lady, and it’s slowly closing with every passing second!!!

SETH: @angiannini89 Just kidding.  Yes, we can talk tomorrow.


MARCH 24TH

PATRICK: I want to thank everyone who followed me and made my time at the City Press a wonderful experience.

PATRICK: And to everyone else, I apologize.

DUSTIN: Yesterday was my last day of employment.  I hate to be the optimist that says this is the best thing that ever happened to me.

DUSTIN: But why the hell not?  I still have life in this body.  So who cares?

SETH: Just heard about a man who jumped in front of a subway train.  Public transit just cannot get a break, can it?

ANGELA: I have to get a job.  Which I guess means that I have to figure out what I’m good at.  Suck.

SETH: @angiannini89 So, I don’t know if you heard about the guy who jumped in front of a subway today...

SETH: @angiannini89 ...but they think that it was @pattycitypress.


MARCH 25TH

ANGELA: I don’t want to think I’m responsible for Patrick’s suicide.  There’s been too much death around me these past two months. 

ANGELA: It’s time to Etch-A-Sketch all of this.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth I can’t do the Peace Corps right now.  I’m sorry.

ANGELA: @dustykinder Hey, I think I’m cool sticking with Dr. Wheeler.  But I’m grateful for everything that you’ve done to help.

SETH: @angiannini89 You’re still the Pepper Potts to my Tony Stark.  That was the lamest thing I’ve ever said.

ANGELA: @turnbullseth  No.  No, it’s not.

DUSTIN: @angiannini89 No worries.  I wish you nothing but the best of luck.

DUSTIN: This must be the final stage of grief.  Acceptance.  Now if only it felt more accepting.

SETH: Not a coward, not a hero, not a lover, not a friend.  What does that make me?  That’s not a riddle, I’m genuinely confused.

ANGELA: It feels like everything’s gone off the rails in the past two months.  But now I feel ready for the next part of my life.

ANGELA: I just wish I knew what that was.

THE END

 

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