Friday, December 30, 2016

Monologue Mania Day #1052 Penultimate by Janet S. Tiger (c) Dec. 30, 2016

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Monologue Mania Day #1052 Penultimate by Janet S. Tiger (c) Dec. 30, 2016
This is for those readers who do not want last year's WELL-RECEIVED monologue for this date because they are gambling this will be better.....hope it is!  (The monologue from last year will be tomorrow)


                                    a monologue by
                     ©Janet S. Tiger all rights reserved
                  (Actress enters with book.)

A dictionary.  Out of date.  This is...out of date.

                 (Waves the dictionary)

But, like Shakespeare, it hangs in there.  And all the words......they still count......such wonderful words!  Egregious....which has nothing to do with eggs.....and  catatonic, which is not what felines drink........but they all pale next to  my favorite.  (Says it with glee)  PEE - nultimate!

Go ahead, giggle.  PEE - nultimate.  Which has nothing to do with......urine!

Penultimate means ....almost the last.  Next to last.  That was me.  I was the fourth out of five kids.  Not young enough to be the baby, but just the right age to be forgotten.  Ignored.  

My folks divorced when I was seven, and where there had been money.  Now, no money.  But we still lived in our big house, even though the heat was turned off every other month.  Restarted when my mother screamed at my father.  And by the time I was nine, I had outgrown my winter coat, and my mother took my older brother's hideous puke green coat and put edging on it to make it look like it was a girl's coat.  


I still have nightmares about what the other girls would say......not nice.  Not nice at all. teacher gave me a present.  A dictionary.  She told me that all the words in there were gifts... for everyone.  So I started studying them, because I figured... if I knew more words, then I had more gifts, even if I had a horrible ugly coat.  I would stay after that class to talk with the teacher, and she helped me learn how to describe the girls who bothered me.  Spiteful.  Malicious.  Vicious. Misanthropic.

And I would tell her about my family, and she would give me words to help with that, too.  Then I told her I was almost the last, and I heard my teacher say I was the PEE-nultimate.....and I fell in love with that word! sounded like candy for my ears!.....and just the way love changes everything, things started to change for me.....

Until then, I had no place.  But I was .....important.  I was the penultimate.  Almost last.  Not the final bite which can be all dry, I was the bite with a taste in it.  Right before the edge of the burger, but not the end, with no more meat in it!  I was the PEE -nultimate!

I started to stand up for myself more.  I told my father I wanted a new coat, and showed him my old coat and I think I almost saw him start to cry before he turned away,  Then he turned back, took my hand and we went shopping for a coat....the most beautiful coat in the world!

        (She twirls)

It was wool, and very warm and it had a fur collar!  And it was the color of wine!  And suddenly, even though nothing was ever said, my mother suddenly had more money, and even though they didn't get back together, somehow things were never so bad again.

So, I offer this old book to you, with all the old words, and some new on this PEE - nultimate day of the year.

And I have to get going now.  You see, I took all those words and became an editor, and made enough money so that every year, on the penultimate day of the year, I go to the homeless shelter and hand out new coats to the children.......

        (Turns to leave, stops, looks back)

And a dictionary......which always lasts longer than the coats.......

        (Exits to the last day of the year)

Note: A few words about 'free' -  all these monologues are protected under copyright law and are free to read, free to perform and video as long as no money is charged. Once you charge admission or a donation, or include my work in an anthology, you need to contact me for royalty 
Janet S. Tiger    858-736-6315      
Member Dramatists Guild since 1983
Swedenborg Hall 2006-8

1 comment:

Jennifer Silva Redmond said...

Beautiful and true words. You're an inspiration to me!