Saturday, March 11, 2017

Monologue Mania Day #1123 Esther and the Pimple by Janet S. Tiger (c) Mar. 11, 2017

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Monologue Mania Day #1123 Esther and the Pimple by Janet S. Tiger (c) Mar. 11, 2017      
For more info on Purim- http://www.jewfaq.org/holiday9.htm  and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Purim

                                          Esther and the Pimple
                                                         a monologue   by 
                                               by Janet S. Tiger (c) all rights reserved (c) 2017
                                        tigerteam1@gmail.com

        (A woman comes onstage, she is in her 30s, maybe early 40s, looks good for her age.  She is                smiling, holding a scroll, which she opens as if to read.)

This is a megillah, the story of Purim in the Bible.

         (She closes the scroll, puts it down on a chair or table.)

When I was a little girl, I used to hate the story of Purim.  Well, I didn't hate the whole story, the whole story was wonderful, how a mean man, Haman, tried to kill all the Jews, but Mordecai and his cousin Esther save their people, and Esther was very brave and stood up before the king and could have died, but she did it anyway.

So why did I hate it?

Because my name is Esther.

And, in the story, Esther has no pimples, she was beautiful, she was perfect.  So our names were all we had in common!  Her silky skin was milky and satiny and creamy and all the adjectives from all the commercials for all the creams that have been used by women for all time.

But me, I was far from perfect.   I had allergies, so I always had rashes and pimples and things on my skin.  Now, at age eight, when you have pimples, it is far from pleasant, but at age thirteen when you have pimples, things do not improve, and whatever self-esteem you cobbled for yourself is now completely overwhelmed by the combination of rash and the delightful onset of hormonally induced acne. And we will not mention the other hormonally affected teenagers reactions to my pimples - not enough time!

So, at age 19, when you have even more pimples - it is not good - especially when  you have now had many years of hearing the story of Esther - beautiful, perfect Esther, whose name is the only thing you have in common.  For you see, the Esther of the story is checked out for pimples by the King's special pimple spotters - I can only imagine what the job description for that looked like!- if a girl had any problems with her skin - which meant eruptions and blemishes and.....you guessed it, pimples! - she could not be the queen.  She couldn't even compete with the other 400 winners in the King Ahasuerus Beauty Contest - she was sent home!

So pimples were prohibited - and so was anyone who had them, and since that was me, I was doomed - never to get to be one of the finalists, never to be one of the chosen, never to save my people.....it meant, simply, that pimply was .....not so good.

What was to become of me?  What was my fate?  To be cast into the scrap heap of Jewish history, somewhere behind Lot's salty wife and Leah, whose biggest faults were being born first and having a lazy eye?

I decided, after having to wear pounds of make-up just to get a first date, and that with a cousin, to my senior prom, and that he only took me because my father gave him $20......I decided I would focus my attention on marrying a nice blind Jewish young man - which of course was not the easiest thing to find.

So I accepted my fate - to be alone, unloved and unable to save my people.

  Well, since this was my fate, I put my full  focus on learning, as I wasn't going to do much else with my life.  In those days, the saying went - those who can, do, those who can't....stay in school until they're 35.

So I took classes in everything.  Didn't help much, but it kept me busy.  At some point, I actually found myself enjoying the search for learning.  This was rarely in class, but when I could read about something I liked, that was...different.

And I started thinking.  You know, when you have a chance to think about things, sometimes a thought occurs.

Maybe it was because I read more about the Holocaust - and how in the camps, sometimes t he guards used pimples as an excuse to pick people for the selections.  So one pimple could be the difference between survival and a trip to the showers.  That was truly scary.  Would I have been picked to die right away?  Life and death pimples.  I had more than one nightmare after that.

One night, I was reading about famous women for a class in female heroism.  I had taken the class because I figured it was an easy A.  Then, for some reason, I thought of Esther, and I started researching her.

Yes, it was because of a pimple - secretly, I was hoping to find someplace that showed that sometime, somewhere, Esther, too, had one pimple.  It was just logic - how could any one person go through life with no pimples!  Oh, finding out she had even one pimple....it would have meant so much to me!

           (She now picks up the scroll again, opens and looks through.)

But reading the megillah, reading about her - maybe it was the class, I don't know - I realized that Esther didn't have such an easy time of it.

She was an orphan - both parents dead in the Diaspora, which, at that time, was like the Holocaust is today.  And she had been raised by her cousin, Mordecai, and then, when she was just getting old enough to think about boys, along comes the king's people, looking for beautiful, pimple-free girls.  And she is hauled off, to be further beautified for a year, no less! - in order to be given to have sex with the king!  No experience, no Dr. Ruth or Internet! -  just right into the king's arms - a man with the ability to kill her at one command!

And she has to entice and allure him and hopefully become his wife, out of 400 other pimple-free girls!  Because, if she fails, she becomes a part of the king's 'widows' - a woman he slept with that no one else will marry!

On top of it, she can't tell anyone she's Jewish, because Haman - one of the King's top advisors - is a big-time anti-Semite.  So she has to live a lie....also not so simple.

I finally figured out - maybe Esther did not have such an easy life, after all.

And then, after she does win the big prize - he marries her, just like in the romance novels, and she is ...ta, dah!  The Queen!  then she finds out that Haman is going to kill her people.  And not just ten or a hundred - but everyone!

What can she do?  How can she save herself- and them?

In a twisting, turning, nerve-wracking plot, Esther risks her life - and succeeds at saving her people.

So maybe it was a good thing she had no pimples - maybe I wouldn't have been sitting there, reading books in a fancy library, if Esther had a pimple.  I finally forgave Esther - and started to live my own life.

It didn't happen overnight, but things started to change.  Then, one evening in the library, I became friends with another student who was also studying.  She was a bio student, and after we talked a few times, she said to me - I used to have break-outs like you do, then I stopped eating dairy.  Have you tried that yet?  Three little words -  'No more dairy.'

I stopped drinking milk and eating cheese, and all my pimples disappeared in what was it, two days?

Two days.  Well, that's not completely accurate - it was more like - 24 hours!

I stopped eating dairy - how simple could that have been for someone, anyone to have figured that out!  I could have saved an entire lifetime of pain, and horror, and sorrow - and lots of money on make-up.

But there is a positive note - after I lost  the rashes and the pimples, I decided to become a doctor - specializing in juvenile allergic response.  And I help children of all kinds now, so that they will not have to endure what I did for all those years.

So, maybe,  this Esther's pimples - MY pimples! -  were more like ...like diamonds!.(thinks for a minute, shakes head).....no, they were pimples!  

And I hope that you understand I am not advocating you accept your pimples - your flaws, whatever they are.  I'm merely saying that,  in my story, my megillah, I found that pimples..... are only a part of the whole story.  We all have our own story, our own megillah.  But, I hope,  like the original Esther - that my story- and your story, too - can change the world.

        (She rolls up the scroll and exits.  The end.)


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For more info on Purim- http://www.jewfaq.org/holiday9.htm  and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Purim
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http://www.monologuestore.com/monologue-mania---a-blog-with-one-new-free-monologue-per-day/monologue-mania-day-27-by-janet-s-tiger-esthers-pimple-a-purim-spiel-c-2014
This was done 3 years ago!
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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 
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Janet S. Tiger    858-736-6315                CaregiversAnon.org
Member Dramatists Guild since 1983
Playwright-in-Residence
Swedenborg Hall 2006-8
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