Bob and Poppy #1

May 13, 2017
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Bob and Poppy #1

Bob sits on a wooden oak bench in the late afternoon, it is the middle of Autumn and the ground is coated with a thick layer of leaves.

Bob: Hey.
Poppy: Hi.
She sits on the bench next to Bob.
Poppy: Haven’t seen you in a while. Where have you been.
Bob: Thinking.
They sit there in silence for a few moments while Poppy processes the information and Bob thinks.
Poppy: Thinking is not a place.
Bob: I know.
Poppy: But, I asked you where have you been and you said thinking.
Bob: Yeah, so what.
Poppy: I said where have you been not what have you been doing.
Bob: Does it matter?
Poppy: No… yes. It matters. You need to say the truth and now I am curious to where you have been. Where?
Bob: To?
Poppy: What?
Bob: You said to. That is grammatically incorrect.
Poppy: That doesn’t matter.
Bob: Yes, it does. It all starts with ‘to’ doesn’t it.
Poppy: What starts?
Bob: It is a slippery slope.
Poppy: Huh?
Bob: One day you are using grammar incorrectly, the next I dunno… you are doing drugs.
Poppy laughs hysterically.
Poppy: Drugs! Drugs! Where do you get these ideas?
Bob: I will be interviewed on the news and do you know what I will say?
Poppy: What will you say?
Bob: I will say ‘Yes, I always thought she was the type, I told her. I told her. Did you know she also used ‘to’ incorrectly?
Poppy has started breaking out into fits of tears while laughing after hearing these preposterous claims.
Poppy: I won’t do drugs! I promise.
Bob: That is what they all say.
Poppy: Since when did you become so cynical?
Bob: I have always been cynical it’s just you have never taken me seriously.
Poppy: Do you really mean you were serious about how me using grammar incorrectly would mean I would eventually resort to a life of crime and do drugs.
Bob: I never said a life of crime.
Poppy: Well I always thought that kind of thing was implied.
Bob: I am not the cynical one, I did not mention what type of drugs. They could have been drugs from the chemist but your criminal mind assumed they were illegal drugs.
Poppy was whimpering with laughter.
Poppy: I swear I am not a criminal
Bob: Just what a criminal would say
They sat there in silence thinking nothing too complicated to themselves.
Poppy: But, where have you been?
Bob: Here. You have seen me this whole time.
Poppy: I mean, the last couple of weeks.
Bob: Here and there.
Poppy: Where abouts?
Bob just sat there silent.
Poppy: Have I hit a nerve?
Still no reply.
Poppy: You aren’t homeless are you?
Bob doesn’t answer.
Poppy: If you are you can stay with me. I might have to ask my mum but I think it will be okay.
Bob just sits there quietly.
Poppy: You might have to sleep in the shed.
Bob: What?
Poppy: I mean… I can probably work something out.
Bob: Pops. What are you talking about?
Poppy: Bobbie. Be honest. Have you been listening.
Bob: No.
Poppy: You had me worried for a second.
Bob: You wanted to know something about where I have been?
Poppy: Yes, Bob.
Bob: Same old place.
Poppy: But… I haven’t seen you at school.
Bob doesn’t reply.
Poppy: You aren’t on drugs again? says Poppy teasingly
Bob: What?
Poppy: Stop ignoring me.
Bob: I am not ignoring you, I am simply busy thinking.
Poppy: More like day dreaming.
Bob: I assure you these thoughts are philosophical.
Poppy: Let me guess. What is the meaning of life?
Bob: How did you know?
Poppy: Because that is all you ever think about.
Bob: Lucky guess.
Poppy: Do you remember two weeks ago?
Bob: Vaguely. Why?
Poppy: Because back then you were saying that you were thinking about the meaning of life.
Bob: Sheer coincidence.
Poppy: And do you remember the two weeks before that?
Bob: Yes.
Poppy: Same question.
Bob: How could you possibly know that?
Poppy: Because you wrote it down on a piece of paper and marched around the quad saying ‘I am this close… this close’.
Bob stares at his shoes.
Bob: But. Do you know what I am thinking now?
Poppy: Yes.
Bob: What?
Poppy: She will never guess that I am actually still thinking about the meaning of life.
Bob: I swear you are cheating.
Poppy: Once a criminal always a criminal.
They sit there laughing.
Bob: Do I really always think the same thing?
Poppy: Too busy thinking probably
Bob pauses
Bob: Where have you been?
Poppy: Here and there
Bob: Oh
Poppy: I missed you
Bob: Why?
Poppy: I had no one to do nothing with
Bob: Oh
Poppy: I just sat there doing nothing by myself
Bob: So, you wanted to do nothing with someone else?
Poppy: I guess
Bob: Makes sense I guess
They just sat there doing nothing for a while.
Poppy: Bobbie…
Bob: Yeah what?
Poppy: You’re my friend right?
Bob: Sure, why not?
Poppy: Just wanted to know
The silence seemed to stare them in the face.
Bob: Pops, do you hear that?
Poppy: What?
Bob points in a random direction
Bob: That
Poppy: No. What does it sound like?
Bob: It’s hard to explain
Poppy: Try
Bob: It sounds like silence.
Poppy: Bob, silence doesn’t sound like anything.
Bob: Don’t you hear absences of sound?
Poppy: No. You can’t hear silence.
Bob: Are you sure?
Poppy: Positive. And anyway, what would silence sound like?
Bob: It sounds like the feeling of an icy wind.
Poppy: Feelings don’t make noise!
Bob: Why not?
Poppy: They just don’t, okay.
Bob: Is it too hard?
Poppy: What on earth do you mean Bob?
Bob: Do feelings not want to?
Poppy: Bob. Feelings can’t want
Bob: Why not?
Poppy: It just is, okay. It is how it has always been.
Bob: Can’t we change that sort of thing?
Poppy: No Bobbie, we can’t. It is impossible.
Bob: Nothing is impossible.
Poppy: Some things are. Don’t you get that?
Bob pauses.
Bob: When you think of an icy wind what do you think of?
Poppy: Cold.
Bob: When you think of cold what do you hear?
Poppy: Shivering, brrrrs and what not.
Bob: This is what I say when I mean I say it sounds like the feeling of an icy wind.
Poppy: Then just say it sounds like shivering.
Bob: Why?
Poppy: Because it makes sense.
Bob: Why?
Poppy: Because it’s how we are told to think.
Bob: Why?
Poppy: Because of our upbringing.
Bob: Why?
Poppy: Society.
Bob: Why?
Poppy is annoyed now.
Poppy: Because it is how things are. Just stop saying why Bobbie. Just stop already.
Bob: The only way to get to the pure truth is to say why continuously.
Poppy: So, you know the truth now. It’s just how things are.
Bob: Pops, I have to admit. I am a bit underwhelmed.
Poppy: Sometimes the truth is disappointing.
They just sit there in silence for a while.
Bob: You seem…
Poppy interrupts, angry.
Poppy: I seem what? What’s wrong with me Bob, what?
Bob: Di…
Poppy: Keep it quick Bob.
Bob opens his mouth about to speak.
Poppy: What?
Bob opens his mouth about to speak.
Poppy: What?
Bob opens his mouth about to speak.
Poppy: What Bob What?!?
Bob: It doesn’t matter.
Poppy: Obviously it matters a lot Bobbie, because you can’t give me a bloody answer already.
Bob: No. It’s not important Pops.
Poppy: What the hell Bob! Spit it out already. What am I? How do I seem? Tell me already.
Bob: It…
Poppy: Good.
Bob: It…
Poppy: Bad
Bob: It doe…
Poppy: Weird, stressed, annoyed!
Bob: Really…
Poppy: What Bob What?!? Tell me already.
Bob shouts (loses it)
Bob: It doesn’t matter really. Keep your bloody head on and stop it. I was just trying to make conversation, Pops, but you obviously couldn’t handle it. I was just trying to make conversation. Pops, you know I am your friend, so don’t ask. You know I am not a bloody homeless person, so don’t ask. Ok?
Poppy giggles.
Poppy: What do you have against homeless people? She says teasingly
Bob smiles.
Bob: Nothing.
Poppy: Oh really, I find that hard to believe.
Bob: Really I don’t.
Poppy mimics Bob
Poppy: I’m not a bloody homeless person.
Bob laughs.
They sit there silent for a bit.
Bob: Did we…
Poppy waits for Bob to answer, he doesn’t.
Poppy: Did we what?
Bob: Did we just fight?
Poppy: Nah. It was more of a puppy fight if you ask me.
Bob: Ok.

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