Two Stop Pop
Directed by Emily Ludlow
With Sara Luebke & Jess Thomas
Characters Cindy: Super Berkeley eccentric. Top shelf social justice hipster. She’s unafraid to explain the reality to anyone no matter how uncomfortable the situation or topic, but always sickeningly patient and positive.
Train Operator: Voice Over (I can provide if needed) A real hater and representational of the system and those that work within it.
Mick: A White Dad from the Midwest with screaming baby, definitely not in the social justice world, or really all that hip. But he does his best to be considerate and kind. He’s not studied or fully conscious of social theories and racial barriers but willing to give his opinion and stand his ground and personal ethics.
Bart Officer: very few lines
I imagined the train car to be played in the aisle way of the audience. And then use the stage as the platform. But it’s supposed to be on a train and at 12th St. Station Oakland.
Train Operator: This is a Millbrae train, a Millbrae bound train. Watch behind you the doors are closing. (The beeping of the BART train doors closing begins) Next stop MacArthur Station.
Enter Cindy, she’s got her headphones on and is singing as she enters the train. She should be singing something obnoxiously positive. As the song continues Cindy begins to get into it and interacting/ singing to audience members as if they’re other passengers on the train. After a moment of this the
Train Operator cuts Cindy off.
Train Operator: Now approaching MacArthur Station. This is MacArthur Station. And this is a friendly reminder that there is no fun- I’m sorry, there is no singing or dancing allowed on any BART train or platform. Any offenders will be fined up to $250 and potentially tazered in the back. Thank you.
Cindy walks to one of the ends of the train and pushes a button.
Train Operator: Operator.
Cindy: They were enjoying it.
Train Operator: Mam, there is no singing or dancing allowed on any BART train or platform. Any offenders will receive a $250 dollar fine. (As if they think they turned the microphone off) I don’t know who this lady thinks she is- you’re gonna get yourself tazed.
Cindy: I can hear you.
Train Operator: Shi- This is a Millbrae train, a Millbrae bound train. The doors are closing. Turn you- (Audible cut out. The beeps of the door closing).
Mick comes running onstage and, as quickly as he can, up the first few steps in the audience. Mick has a crying baby strapped to the front of him (A doll and a blue tooth speaker?), is wearing a backpack, carrying a diaper bag in one hand and a stroller in the other. He is obviously struggling. The struggle should last a moment and is exacerbated by a pacifier that springs to the floor. Meanwhile, Cindy continues to sing and dance in the aisle way. Eventually she notices Mick really struggling to pick it up and becoming frustrated.
Cindy: Can I help you?
Mick: It’s fine I can get it. (As he continues to fumble for it and the baby continues to cry)
Cindy: Obviously not. It’s okay to ask for help- even from a woman. (putting the pacifier into the baby’s mouth) My name is Cindy.
Mick: Thank you, Cindy. (Taking the pacifier and putting it straight into his pocket) I wasn’t insinuating I didn’t need help from a woman. I just- you know, I’m used to have to figuring it out on my own.
Cindy: Sure. If that’s what you say.
Mick: Yes. That’s what I say. Because it’s the truth.
Cindy: Why didn’t you give them the pacifier? That’s why I picked it up.
Mick: He’s actually in need of a change I don’t think it’s going to help.
Cindy: I think it would.
Mick: I gotta wash it.
Cindy: Let me see it. I was a Nanny before I started performing. (He gives her the pacifier. She puts it in her mouth and then dries it off on her shirt) There you go.
Mick: Thanks. (He puts it straight into his pocket again)
Cindy: I just cleaned it!
Mick: With your mouth! I don’t know where your mouth has been?
Cindy: Oh, so now I’m some sort of sex worker? Are you always this sexist?
Mick: What? No! I’m saying you’re a stranger, I can’t just-
Cindy: Have you tried singing to them?
Mick: To them? (Indicating audience)
Cindy: No the baby.
Mick: Oh! Him.
Cindy: Oh, you’re gonna hold them to gender constraints like that? Way to be an Uberphobe.
Mick: An Uberphobe? He has penis! He’s a boy!
Cindy: Cisgendered male. What if that person decides they’re supposed to have a vagina? You’re definitely not singing for them then are you?
Mick: I don’t really sing. How did this turn into-
Train Operator: There is no singing or dancing on any Bart Train or Platform.
Cindy: -I don’t care!
Train Operator: I’m gonna taze her myself. This is 19th St. Downtown Oakland.
Cindy: (To Mick) Sing!
Mick: I’m not going to sing.
Cindy breaks into a French children’s song that immediately stops the child’s screaming.
Mick: Are you fucking kidding me? (To the baby) Sorry, Buddy.
Cindy: I told you. (She continues to sing)
Mick: Thank you. (Asking a man in the audience) Is this where I get off for Frank Ogawa Plaza? (Hopefully he says “12th street. If, not ask another man until you get the right answer)
Cindy: Why didn’t you ask me?
Cindy: Why didn’t you ask me which stop?
Mick: You were singing and-
Cindy: ‘Cause you needed it man-splained. Can you be anymore stereotypical?
Mick: How did we get- You were singing (The baby starts to cry again) and it was working!
Cindy: You’re upsetting the baby.
Mick: Are you serious?
Cindy: What’s your name?
Cindy: Settle down, Mick. That’s ironic. So close to, “Dick.” I think the problem Mick, is that you’re a standard white man living in the United States of America.
Mick is stunned- looking to the audience for support
Cindy: Oh, they won’t help you. They won’t even offer you a seat, pick up your pacifier or help you carry the stroller. They might take a video and laugh their asses off at you on You Tube, but they won’t help you.
Mick: Look I don’t know what you’re on? But I’m really not looking for- Cindy: Oh, just because I speak too much truth for you to swallow, I’m high? Mick: Aren’t you?
Cindy: (Very calmly throughout her rant) On pot. That’s medicinal. Don’t change the subject- just because someone calls you out. That’s a tremendous part of the problem. It’s okay to be ignorant- it’s just not okay to be okay with it. You are not from the Bay are you?
Mick: (Brutally embarrassed) I’m from Michigan.
Cindy: See! Ignorance. It’s a beautiful thing- like childhood. Embrace it! Sing about your ignorance!
Mick: I’m not singing.
Cindy: -and Dance! (Singing and dancing to the tune of Yankee Doodle Dandy)
“Yankee Doodle’s nothing but an appropriating whitey, That stole, enslaved and totally oppressed
To prove that they were mighty. Yankee Doodle live it up, Yankee Doodle Dandy, Mind your manors,
shut your mouth, And incarcerate when handy.”
Cindy: Sing with me! “I’m part of the problem! I’m part of the problem! I’m part-
Train Operator: Ma’am you are becoming a problem! This is 12th street- 12th Street. This is the last time I’m telling you, Ma’am-
Cindy: Fine, I’m getting off!
Mick and Cindy exit the train and stand on the platform (Stage).
Mick: (Annoyed from the embarrassment) Hey Miss High-and-Mighty! You think calling people out and making them feel shitty is helpful? You think that singing and dancing is going to change the world?
Cindy: It’s a cultural bridge.
Mick: (a little heated and building) Look, I understand things are screwed up, (pointing to himself and the baby) I think about it every day. I do my best to be kind and understanding. I voted for Obama! If you think singing and dancing is gonna make a big difference, lets do it. You think I can’t relate. You think I’m the fuckin’ enemy?! (Sorry buddy) Lets do it. Lets sing and dance. (He begins to sing and dance, the baby stops crying again)
Bart Officer: Enters and begins to sing with Mick for a brief moment. There’s no singing or dancing on any platform.
Cindy: Aren’t you going to write him a ticket? Taze him!
Bart Officer: (Gives him a noticeable look over) Nah, just a warning. (Exits)
Cindy: (Angrily as the baby begins to cry) DAMN YOU WHITE PRIVILEGE!