m: august osage county

Act 01, Scene 04 - 01 - Barbara

From: August: Osage County, by Tracy Letts

Genre: Comedy

Topic: Prom, survival

Character: Female

I used to go out with that boy. With that man.
The sheriff.
In high school. They day of the prom, his father got drunk and stole his car. Stole his own son’s car and went somewhere. Mexico. Dean showed up at the door, wearing this awful tuxedo. He’d been crying, I could tell. And he confessed he didn’t have a way to take me to prom. I just felt awful for him, so I told him we’d walk. About three miles. I busted a heel and we both got so sweaty and dirty. We gave up… got a six – pack and broke into the chapel, stayed up all night talking and kissing. And now he’s telling me… oh, it’s just surreal. Thank God we can’t tell the future. We’d never get out of bed. Listen to me: Die after me, all right? I don’t care what else you do, where you go, how you screw up your life, just… survive. Outlive me, please.

Prologue - 02 - Beverly

From: August: Osage County, by Tracy Letts

Genre: Comedy

Topic: Pills; drink; unhappiness

Character: Male; suicidal

           Violet. My wife. She takes pills, sometimes a good many. And they affect… among other things, her equilibrium. Fortunately, the pills she takes eliminate her need for equilibrium. So she falls when she rambles… but she doesn’t ramble much.

           My wife takes pills and I drink. That’s the bargain we’ve struck… one of the bargains, just one paragraph of our marriage contract… cruel covenant. She takes pills and I drink. As to whether she takes pills because I drink… I learned long ago not to speak for my wife. The reasons why we take anymore are inconsequential. The facts are: my wife take pills and I drink. And these facts have over time made burdensome the maintenance of traditional American routine: paying of bills, purchase of goods, cleaning of clothes or carpets or crappers. Rather than once more assume the mantle of guilt… vow abstinence with my fingers crossed in the queasy hope of righting our ship, I’ve chosen to turn my life over to a higher power… and join the ranks of the Hiring Class.

           It’s not a decision with which I’m entirely comfortable. I know how to launder my dirty undies… done it all my life, me or my wife, but I’m finding it’s getting in the way of my drinking. “Something has been said for sobriety but very little.” And now you are here.

           The place isn’t in such bad shape, not yet. I’ve done all right. I’ve managed. And just last night, I burned an awful lot of…debris…Y’know… a simple utility bill can mean so much to a living person. Once they’ve passed, though… after they’ve passed, the words and numbers just seem like… otherworldly symbols. It’s only paper. Worse. Worse than blank paper. This is clean.

Act 01, Scene 02 - 01 - Jean

From: August, Osage County, by Tracy Letts

Genre: Comedy

Topic: Unfaithful father

Character: Female, teenager

He’s fucking one of his students which is pretty uncool, if you ask me. Some people would think that’s cool, like those dicks who teach with him in the Humanities Department because they’re all fucking their students or wish they were fucking their students. “Lo – liii – ta.” I mean, I don’t care and all, he can fuck whoever he wants and he’s a teacher and that’s who teachers meet, students. He was just a turd the way he went about it and didn’t give mom a chance to respond or anything. What sucks now is that mom’s watching me like a hawk, like, she’s afraid I’ll have some post – divorce freak – out and become and heroin addict or shoot everybody at school. Or God forbid, lose my virginity. I don’t know what it is about Dad splitting that put mom on hymen patrol.