How About Hello?

A drama scene from one-act eplay All That Matters most, Clyde tries to get a handle on his finances in order to take care of his family.

ROSA: How about hello?

CLYDE: You know, you don’t stop breaking my balls. When is it gonna end?

ROSA: It’s me? You have some nerve.

CLYDE: You don’t give me a minute to breathe.

ROSA: Oh stop, I don’t bother you all day long while you’re at work.

CLYDE: As soon as I step foot in this house I have to hear your lip.

ROSA: What husband comes home and doesn’t greet his wife?

CLYDE: HELLO, HELLO, happy? Can I eat now?

ROSA: Eat! Stuff your face. Thought you were going on a diet.

CLYDE: I am.

ROSA: When?

CLYDE: After I eat.

ROSA: You’ve been saying you’re gonna go on a diet for months now.

CLYDE: I’m preparing.

ROSA: The doctor has given you warnings, plus your smoking.

CLYDE: Rosa, listen, I had a really long, miserable day and I just want to make myself a sandwich in peace, sit in front of the television and zone out for a bit, is that so wrong? Why do I have to come home to this sh’t?

ROSA: You have five children.

CLYDE: I know I have five children!

ROSA: It’s parent conference week this week and I shouldn’t have to do this all alone. You should be there with me.

CLYDE: I can’t run a business and run around to school at the same time.

ROSA: Yes you can, you own the company, why did you hire a staff if you can’t take leave when needed?

Clyde begins choking on ham.

CLYDE: Becau—Becau—(he coughs and taps his chest)

ROSA: Are you choking?!

Clyde nods yes.

Rosa runs behind him and starts hitting his back. Clyde growls in pain. Clyde runs to the sink and tries to drink water but it doesn’t work. He panics and gestures for Rosa to hit his back again.

Rosa hits his back but it doesn’t help Clyde. She then tries the Heimlich maneuver but it makes matters worse.

Clyde drops to his knees but miraculously coughs out the ham and begins to catch his breath.

ROSA: Oh my God!!

Clyde waves his hands to say he’s okay.

Can you breathe? Can you breathe?!

Clyde gives thumbs up and nods as he regains his breath.

Rosa grabs a cup of water from the sink and brings it to him.

Clyde takes hold of it but doesn’t drink. He’s just happy to breathe again. He stands.

CLYDE: I don’t…I don’t need the water…just want to regain my breath.

ROSA: Did you spit it all out?

CLYDE: Yes, yes, I think I did. (he inhales deeply) I have full capacity. (beat) I can breathe. Thought I was gonna die. I swear. Thought I was gonna drop dead right here on the kitchen floor.

  • To read the full one-act ePlay, find purchase link below:

In this one-act ePlay, Clyde and Rosa are on the verge of losing their home because of Clyde’s failing business but that may not be all that they are losing.

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Joseph Arnone