Uproarious laughs mixed with social commentary against the background of Valentine's Day. Gramps and Gran yearn for the romance of their younger days while their daughter-in-law, Paulette, and her husband deal with his lack of interest in sex. Meanwhile, Paulette's daughter is being coached to dress trampily to attract men by her Aunt Jean.
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Gramps: (George Dyck): Acerbic, witty. 70-ish
Gran: (Mildred Dyck): Sweet, ditzy, 70-ish
Henry Dyck: Unromantic, frugal. 45-ish
Paulette Dyck: Yearns for romance 45-ish.
Jean Witherspoon: Paulette’s trampy sister. 40-ish
Jacqui Dyck: College student, looking for Mr. Right. 25-ish.
The Dangers of VD (Valentine's Day) is set in modern times in a middle-class neighborhood. It is 5 PM on Valentine’s Day evening.
The single set is a living room/dining room open concept space with a large dinner table at the rear of the set and a TV in front of Gramps' and Gran's comfy TV watching chairs.
Stage right features a door to the outside while stage left has a door to a hallway to the kitchen, etc and a door to the master bedroom.
Gramps: You know, I am getting so sick of watching these Corner Gas reruns. Surely there must be something funnier on. Maybe flip it over to Coronation Street.
Gran: Coronation Street isn’t funny, at least, not the kind of funny where you laugh.
Gramps: Neither is Brent Butt after umpteenth retelling of the same jokes. He even admits he’s where we got the term “Butt Ugly” from. Anyway, use the dooflickus and find something better.
Gran: I’ve been trying the dooflickus all afternoon and it hasn’t worked. I think the batteries are dead in it. No wonder with that stupid joy-buzzer feature. It made me drop it about twelve times. (As she speaks the word “dooflickus”, she holds up a cell phone and points it at the TV.)
Gramps: Never mind I will do it the old fashioned way. (Leans over slowly reaching for the TV with a long drawn out CREEEEAAAK! The TV, however, is 2 inches too far out of his reach. He straightens. )I have an idea, let’s just watch Corner Gas.
Gran: I hope that creaking was the chair and not your back! I’ve heard better sounding outhouse hinges.
(Act I, Scene 2)
(Enter Jacqui UL in a tizzy searching madly.)
Gramps: Maybe I should have an extra dose of my shark cartilage after supper.
Gran: It didn’t seem to help the shark much.
Gramps: (to Jacqui) If you’re searching for drugs, your grandmother and I gave that up years ago... at least the ones not covered by Blue Cross.
Jacqui: Oh, Gramps, have you seen my cell phone? I’ve tried to call it a million times but it’s on “vibrate” and I can’t hear it. I NEED that thing! It’s my life!
Gramps: Cell-phones come with a life? Maybe I should get one.
Gran: Of course you have a life. It’s the thing I make miserable.
Jacqui: What would you use a cell phone for, Gramps? I hardly think you need to be texting the old fuds down at the barbershop. What are you going to say? “Another nice buzz-cut, Cliff.” Or, “Has the “Guns and Ammo” magazine arrived yet?”
Gramps: If it’s anything like the drivel your friends post on your Facebook page, maybe you have a point. They make the news on Entertainment Tonight seem downright important. (In fake girlie voice) I’m going to take a shower now… Oh I just had a shower... whatever will I do with my hair?
Jacqui: Gramps! Have you been going at my Facebook again? OOOHHHH! Last time I accidently left my page up, you posted that I was sorry I couldn’t come to the party because I had uncontrollable diarrhoea. It took me weeks to live it down!
Gran: Well you DID have uncontrollable diarrhoea. Young ladies didn’t do that sort of thing in my day.
Gramps: I knew we should have taped it so we could show you how you sounded. It was hilarious!
Gran: I laughed so hard I thanked the good Lord I’d remembered to put my Depends on.
Jacqui: Ohhh you guys! Hey, wait!
Act 1, Scene 1
That’s my cell phone you’re holding! What are you doing with it? I’ve been tearing the house apart for it!
Gran: Is that your phone? I thought it was the TV dooflickus. No wonder it so lousy for changing channels.
(Act I Scene 13)
(Enter Jean and Paulette who talk as they go to the dining room table C and sit.)
Paulette: …and I don’t know what’s up with him lately. He’s become so focussed on money, he has even less time for me than he used to which was already pretty meager. He spends far more time with his calculator than me… turning it on… running his fingers all over it… massaging figures… It’s gotten so bad, I’m jealous of his office equipment. Anyway, I don’t know what his problem is.
Jean: Are you sure it’s his problem?
Paulette: What do you mean?
Jean: Maybe it’s not him. Maybe it’s you. Maybe you’re sending him the wrong signals.
Paulette. What do you mean by the wrong signals? I’ve bought slinky negligees, I’ve prettied myself up for him and put on my special cologne with natural pheromones and a subtle scent… it’s called “Submissive Aggression”. No wait… “Aggressive Submission”… anyway all men are supposed to go crazy for and all I get for my efforts is a peck on the cheek and a “You might want to wash that crap off before it gets all over your pillow”.
Jean: Didn’t I warn you this would happen?
Paulette: Thanks. I need an “I told you so” like I need a third boob.
Jean: You do have a third boob, honey. He’s having a shower getting ready for your big date.
Paulette: Yes, well, I can tell you it is not my fault he’s a cold fish. I push and push and push and get nowhere.
Jean: Maybe that’s the problem! If you push too hard, maybe he feels a bit emasculated. Maybe he believes it’s his job to initiate the horizontal hula and when you take over, he is repulsed by your pushiness.
Paulette: Must you use the word repulsed? If I waited for him to initiate a night of connubial bliss, I might as well take an oath of chastity.
Jean: Not if you still work on him in more subtle ways. Build him up without making it too obvious. Find reasons to praise his masculinity. Act like the helpless female. I’m sure that wouldn’t be all that much of a stretch.
Paulette: Do you really think that would work?
Jean: You bet. Guaranteed. Unless he’s gay, of course.
Paulette: GAY? (She blurts the first word but then speaks sotto voce) Gay? There’s no way. He doesn’t even like parades! Besides, we’ve been married for decades! I mean… there’s nothing wrong with being gay, of course, but I’d prefer my husband not be! What does that say about my attractiveness? I’ve been trying to stay on top of my moustache… maybe I shouldn’t have!
Jean: Calm down, Sis. I didn’t say he was gay, I just said it’s possible. It might be why he immerses himself in his work. It’s a way of sublimating his sexual impulses.
Paulette: If his pulse was as infrequent as his impulses, I could have him declared legally dead. SHHH!!! It’s Gramps!
(Gramps comes out of the bathroom with his motorized walker dragging him around the stage.)
Jean: Where are you going, George?
Gramps: I’m trying to get to the kitchen… woooaahhhh! (It drags him to a corner where it bumps against the wall over and over like a stuck toy. The women run over to pull him off the wall and point him in the direction of the kitchen.)
Are your customers raving about you on social media? Share their great stories to help turn potential customers into loyal ones. Henry: Good heavens! This is unbelievable!
Paulette: Is there a problem, dear?
Jean: He probably just figured out his Mastercard number is a square root of a positive integer.
Henry: Actually, Jean, it’s close. Only three decimal places away. This is much more serious. In comparing my billfold contents with my previous inventory, I am carrying over 25% more material in my wallet since last year and 43% more since the year before. At this rate, I will need a suitcase to lug the contents of my wallet in less than a decade.
Jean: I’ll alert the media. (In a hoarse whisper to Paulette) Maybe this isn’t such I good idea, Paulette. It would take Dr. Frankenstein and a bolt of lightning to put some life in this stiff.
Paulette: Please, Jean. You can’t let me down.
Henry: What seems to be the problem?
Paulette: Well, you see, darling, it seems I’ve… developed a headache and will be unable to go to dinner with you. Jean has kindly agreed to take my place so we don’t lose the deposit on the reservation.
Henry: Good thinking… Wait a minute… I’m supposed to have a Valentine’s Day dinner with your sister? That seems rather inappropriate, don’t you think?
Jean: Oh, come on, Henry. It might be fun! I always get giggly at the thought of spreadsheets.
Henry: Well good heavens, what would people think? This is a small city! People talk! You two don’t even look that much alike. People will think we’re… we’re…
Paulette: They will think you’re having dinner with a relative or a client or a none of your damn business. Don’t worry so much about what people think, Henry. It’s what I think that counts.
Jean: Besides, Henry, it’s not like we’re sneaking around. We are going to the most expensive, exclusive restaurant in town. Take it from an expert. When you’re on a peccadillo, you go to the most expensive restaurant at least two cities away.
Henry: Maybe I should just rent your “How to Have a Peccadillo” video.
Paulette: Now, Henry, that is extremely unkind given that she has agreed to give up her Valentines plans for me. I consider it a favour for her to take my place. I would hate for us to break our Valentine tradition.
Henry: Yes, and there’s always the issue of the reservation cancellation fee. I can’t help but notice, however, that her Valentines plans appeared to consist of coming to our house and irritating me. Still, five dollars is five dollars.
Jean: Exactly. Come on, Henry, let’s go eat some dinner and maybe have a few laughs in spite of ourselves.
Henry: All right. (Heavy sigh.) The things I do for you, Paulette. I will go get my coat from the bedroom and meet you in my car.
Jean: Actually, I thought I’d drive.
Henry: But my Prius gets 22.5% better gas mileage than your BMW. That would be a frivolous waste of resources.
Jean: True, but it’s my gas and I don’t give a rat’s rectum about your 22.5% better mileage. Plus, I’ll even pay for the parking.
Henry: Done. I’ll get that coat. (Exits to bedroom.)
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