Thursday, September 17, 2015

Monologue Mania Day #582 Lies (The Rabbi) by Janet S. Tiger Sept. 17, 2015

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Monologue Mania Day #582  Lie (The Rabbi) by Janet S. Tiger  Sept. 17, 2015

                This monologue is designed to work with tomorrow's monologue as a duo - but each will stand alone.

                                                  The Lie
                                     A monologue by Janet S. Tiger   
                                                © all rights reserved

           (The rabbi is dressed from the 1950s orthodox, with a long coat, beard, yarmulke.  He enters hesitantly, nods.  Eastern European accent)

Thank you, my friend, I'm glad you could see me.  It's funny, sometimes you, a priest, come to me, a rabbi, and now, I come to you for advice.  Life is strange, don't you think?

        (Listens, nods)

A cup of tea would be nice.....and yes, something stronger would be nicer......

        (He paces)

It's funny, the ten commandments are interpreted differently ....for you, it is 'thou shalt not lie'...for us, thou shalt not bear false witness.....lying under oath is against the rules.....but a little white lie....a wife asks is her hat pretty.....yes, it is.....because why hurt her feelings?

(Sighs)  But at what point is it.....a lie.  Not little.  I told my mother a lie.  Yes, when I was child I told her lies, all children do, but I'm talking about now.....five years ago.

I lied to my mother......I told her that her son.....was alive.

There were three of us brothers......the oldest brought us all here to the United States, after my father died, before the war. 

Yossel caught a fever one day, he was dead two days later.  Buried on a mother disintegrated....I thought she would die, too.  But Yossel left a wife, two small children, it kept her busy. 

Then David moved to Hollywood, to go into the movies.  He was never as religious as the rest of us.  

        (He takes a sip of tea)

I got the phone call when I was preparing my sermon......the sermon was on be careful while studying, to look at each word to find the meaning.  I remember because the call was to tell me my brother had been hit by a bus in Los Angeles.....dead.  A bus.  In New York, people are killed all the time by busses....but in Los Angeles?  Who knew they even had busses?

        (He puts his head in his hands)

I was going to tell her....I swear!  But she was still upset about Yossel.....and....I just couldn't.  I thought I would do it after I got back so I told her David needed to see me about a career move, and I was going to visit him.

David had given my number and address for emergencies.   So when I got there, it was easy to pretend he was still alive......

Who calls from 3000 miles?   Maybe one day, it will be cheaper to phone people up......but my mother never expected a phone call.  Even now.....But letters.......I wrote in David's handwriting....forged.....I did that when we needed papers before the war.....I was very good.....but the my mother loved them!

And because he was hit by a bus, there was a settlement from the city.  I took some of the money and sent it to my mother.  She was so proud to have a successful son/  And so I told her.....he had done well, and was Israel.

She was very upset, but also very happy for him, especially when his letters told of his love for his new land.  Why didn\t he see her on the way to Israel?  Because he went via Hawaii....and Asia.......and he continued to send a rabbi, I have many friends who travel....many people who helped in my deception......I told some of them, but not others.....the lie spreading like honey......catching me in its sweet stickiness....

Did I lie to just protect her?  Or did I lie because I was afraid she would be so hurt to know the truth?


So what's the problem?  What is the problem.......the problem mother is dying.....a cancer eating her from the inside.....and she wants to see her more time before she dies.....

What do I do, my friend?  Do I tell her the truth?  Or keep sending letters that say David is not well enough to travel?  Where will the lie end?

I'm sorry to burden you.....although I know you've heard much worse.......I suppose, it's hard for a rabbi to admit that he has made such a mistake.....or is a mistake?  Has she been happier not knowing he's gone?  ......Or does she know?

I'm not asking for an answer now......we have a little time......just think about it, and let me know what you would....if it was your mother......

          (He turns to leave, stops, looks back)

 When I was younger, I used to think that if I studied hard enough, I could learn anything.  But as I get older, I realize......the more I study, the less I know.  Perhaps one day, I will awaken to realize, that I know absolutely nothing.....about everything.....

         (Lights down on him.  End of scene)

Janet S. Tiger    858-736-6315
Member Dramatists Guild since 1983
Swedenborg Hall 2006-8

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