Scene One

Scene One

Barnaby’s Bedroom, Day. Barnaby and Barnaby’s Dad are playing with a giant pile of stuffed animals next to a child’s drumset. Barnaby’s babys sister is not in the scene, but was born the day before, and the two who are in the scene are keenly aware that she is coming home tomorrow with her mother. Who is also Barnaby’s Mother.

Barnaby: I need to get ALL of the toys into the river!

BD.: And the couch is the boat, right?

Barnaby: I need everything out of the boat and in the river! I need to swim in the water with you and everyone else.

BD: You want me to come in the water too?


BD: Ah, Barno. I’m… C’mon, kid, I’ve barely slept.

Barnaby: Can I get in the boat with you?

BD: Yeah! Come get in the boat. We can float and snuggle.

Barnaby: Will you eat me?

BD: It’s possible. There’s a distinct possibility.

Barnaby: Don’t eat me.

BD: I’m not gonna eat you, get in the boat.

Barnaby: (whispering) will you come in the water with me?

BD: (laughing) Yeah, but why is it a secret?

Barnaby: Because I need to float in the water so I won’t be nervous.

BD: (not laughing) Okay, honey. Okay.

Barnaby: And you can eat me.

BD: Honey, I’m not gonna eat you.

Barnaby: Then how can I get in your belly and get in the water?

Barnaby’s dad can’t speak for a minute.

Barnaby: Can you wrap me up in my blanket?

BD: Yeah, of course. You wanna roll up like a burrito?

Barnaby: Roll me up like a burrito!

BD: Good Lord, kid. Freud really knew what he was talking about with three year olds.

Barnaby: Can you roll me up?

Barnaby’s Dad rolls up Barnaby in his turtle blanket. Barnaby howls with laughter as he tries to break free. It’s an identical scene from three and a half years earlier, although the blanket was a swaddle, and Barnaby was howling with frustration before passing out.

Barnaby breaks from the blanket and runs over to his drums. He commences a manic five minute drum solo, during which he breaks long enough to bring BD a woodblock and gestures that it should be played. BD leans back on the couch and absent-mindedly keep beat on a woodblock until he feels the sharp scrape of severely beaten drum sticks run along his neck.

BD: Kid! What are you doing?

Barnaby: No, I’m just pretending!

BD: Cut it out, Barnaby, your scraping up my neck with those sticks.

Barnaby: They aren’t sticks, they’re scissors.

BD: Jesus, Barnaby. What are you talking about?

Barnaby: I want to cut you with these scissors!

Barnaby’s Dad gets very serious for a second. He looks at Barnaby for a moment and searches for telltale signs that the parents and neighbors of murderers always claim to have missed. Once he’s assured that, if they are apparent in his kid, he’s missing them too, he picks up Barnaby and puts him on the couch.

BD: Why do you want to cut me with scissors?

Barnaby: I want to cut off part of your face with scissors.

BD: Barno, this is really serious. Why on earth would you want to do that.

Barnaby: I’m trying to tell you.

BD: Okay.

Barnaby: I would cut off a piece of your face and feed it to Gramma Linda. Because she’s your mommy.

BD: Barnaby, that’s just terrible.

Barnaby: That’s terrible?

BD: What do you think would happen to me if you did that? Would I be happy or sad?

Barnaby: You would be sad.

BD: Do you want me to be happy or sad?

Barnaby: I want you to be happy AND sad.

BD: Why?

Barnaby: Because that’s how I feel ALL THE TIME and you’re my daddy.

BD: Is that how you feel now?

Barnaby. No. I’m just a little nervous.

BD: I know honey. I know. But why would you want to cut me with scissors?

Barnaby: I want to cut a hole in you!

BD: Do you know that hole would be there forever? In my face? It would never get better.

Barnaby: But I would fill the hole!

BD: You can’t fill the hole, Barno. It’s in my face, if you cut my face, then part of my face would be missing for the rest of my life.

Barnaby: What would be in the hole?

BD: Blood. Muscle. Tendons. Human-stuff. Just stuff. Like meat.

Barnaby: But I want to see it. I want to be there in the hole!

BD: What?

Barnaby: I want to cut a hole so I can be there in the hole. I want to be inside the hole!

BD: Why, Barnaby?

Barnaby: (suddenly holding his father’s face in his hands, gripping his beard with both fists) BECAUSE YOU’RE MY BEAUTIFUL DADDY! BECAUSE YOU’RE MY BEAUTIFUL, BEAUTIFUL DADDY! BECAUSE I’M NERVOUS and You’re my beautiful (whispering) beautiful (silently mouthing) … daddy.