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I’ll Bring The Olives

Characters: 4F
Setting: Sport utility vehicle.


LILY: So, are you girls going to the pot-luck?

SPEAR: I wish we’d get over dragging casseroles to these damned meetings. Everybody in and buckled up? Swimming pool, here we come.

TOOTS: Never mind the dragging. Who has time to cook the stupid things?

JANE: I’m scared stiff of all these anonymous dishes. I think I’ll pass. I can’t affor….

LILY: Oh, come on, Jane. Figure out how you can do it.

SPEAR: Who wants to do it? Yeah, I got enough gas. It costs too much here, anyway.

LILY: Where can you get better home cooked food? Just tell me that.

SPEAR: It’s bloody undignified.

LILY: Who cares about dignity. I’ll take taste over dignity any day.

SPEAR: Seen any men dragging a casserole around. Bambi, maybe. But not casseroles.

LILY: Who cares what men do! I’m a woman and hoppin’ hooters I’m gonna be human my way.

TOOTS: So why do we all have to be stuck with casseroles so you can have some home cooking?

LILY: Will you lay off the casseroles for Goddess sake. I don’t have to have a whole set of carpentry tools just so I can have a dog. I can buy a dog house. I don’t have to build it.

TOOTS: The food is good, but my shop closes at five thirty. And I’m to be there with a hot dish at seven. How’m I supposed to pull that off?

LILY: And who says you have to?

TOOTS: The Prez, we’ll-have-a-pot-luck-of-course, Ellen.

JANE: The slave master.

SPEAR: The kitchenizer. I don’t mind being barefoot, but I’ll be darned if I’m going to be pregnant too, to operate my lettuce whizzer.

LILY: Do you see men carrying on like this?

SPEAR: No. And let me tell you in spite of the ads, we ain’t gone nowhere, Baby.

LILY: You and your men. Men bring salads to the monthly brainstorming lunches at work.

SPEAR: Salad in a bag, most likely.

LILY: I don’t think so. I’ve never seen anything like that in a bag. If I did, I’d buy it.

SPEAR: So what do the rest of the guys take?

LILY: Food. And when they invite people home…

TOOTS: Right. But who takes the real food? There are lots of guys who bring rolls and butter or coffee and cream. Big hairy Sasquatch deal!

JANE: People like that don’t pull their own weight.

LILY: Everybody contributes according to their commitment to the idea.

SPEAR: You must be really committed then, Lily. All those bottles of olives must really add up.

LILY: Who wants ancient olives sitting around at home. I have someone to help me eat…

SPEAR: Yeah right!

LILY: I can’t always get home to pick up hot food, so I go Zetty’s and pick up every kind of olive they have. How many people have that many olives every day?

JANE: I guess it’s an idea. It sounds pretty expensive though. You nearly hit that cat.

TOOTS: I just need more time. I’ll buy it anywhere. Jar, plastic tub….where ever I can find it..

LILY: I’ll bring the olives.

TOOTS: Yeah! Right! One good idea and you’ve taken it.

LILY: So go to Freshmart and grab a large coleslaw. Cut up some maraschino cherries and some candied ginger. Dump ‘em into the salad and stir. Heck, one time I got stuck and I took a box of chocolate liqueurs. Nobody complained about that, except one old biddy. It’s not all that easy preparing for a pot-luck at the airport duty free shop.

SPEAR: That’s not good home cooking.

LILY: It’s not micro waved shoe leather, either.

TOOTS: I hate tough food, but I don’t want a cold supper, either.

LILY: For Goddess sake, Spear, will you watch it, or we are not going to make it to the pool. Then, it’ll be cream cheese and crumby bagels on Cloud X instead of potluck.

JANE: If allergies or food poisoning don’t get you…

LILY: I always wonder how long some of that stuff has been lukewarm.

SPEAR: And they always have to fart around about something before they can eat. See how long they can hold the food in the danger zone.

JANE: Did you see what that guy in the truck did?

SPEAR: Did he moon ya?

JANE: Spear! No. He cut that woman right off. Just like my no good ex.

SPEAR: I thought you were supposed to be getting over that.

JANE: Right! I’d just like to know who cooked it, so I could find out if any mangoes or cauliflower got into the thing before I eat it and get sick.

SPEAR: So figure out how to get that information.

JANE: Have a flagpole erected and climb up it and scream at the contributors, “If you have any mangoes or cauliflower in that, get it out of here!” I don’t think so.

SPEAR: I guess..Holy! Man! Drive in your own lane. So how about Plan B, then?

JANE: What do you mean, Plan B?

SPEAR: Something you could do to find out. Nobody’s fetching a flagpole for you.

JANE: It’s stupid. I read labels on everything. There are no labels at pot lucks.

SPEAR: Now you’ve said a mouthful. Hey Lily, write that down for her.

LILY: Write what down for her?

SPEAR: Are you in the car? Write, ‘there are no labels at pot lucks.’

LILY: Whatever you say and take it easy on the bumps, will you. Here’s your sticky note.

SPEAR: Keep that and think about it, eh Jane.

JANE: Yeah, right. Thank you, Ladies. This is sure to be my destiny.

SPEAR: Think of it as an outboard fortune in the Cookie of Life.

LILY: Really! Spear!

TOOTS: You know Jane, this could be your windfall. We’ll get behind you. You can do it.

JANE: Am I pregnant, or something. The last time I heard stuff like that I was in labor.

TOOTS: You’d better be. There’s a need for you to fill, Jane, if ever I saw one.

JANE: What are you talking about?

TOOTS: I thought I heard you say you wanted to go into business…well?

JANE: What’s this getting behind me, bit?

TOOTS: Getting your business up and going, of course.

LILY: Jane is going into business?

JANE: Jane, here. Yes. I’ve got to do something. Hal spent all the money before he flew the coop.

LILY: Hmmph!

JANE: What are you thinking about, anyway?

SPEAR: Plan B!

TOOTS: Believe me, you’re not the only one with allergies. My friend who does Chosen Frozen has one allergy after the other to deal with. People are scared stiff of store bought stuff, too. Even going to family gatherings is pretty scarey. Who knows what somebody has slipped into something to gussy it up for company or make it a bit more ethnic.

JANE: And pot lucks are really lethal. People tend to show off their je ne sait quoi mango chutney meat loaf. Who ever met meat loaf with mango chutney in it on her mother’s table? But it’s out there. Somebody brought it to a shower I was at last year.

TOOTS: So take this and run with it. Every allergy can be an opportunity. Red light!

SPEAR: How be I just put this chariot on backseat drive, eh?

TOOTS: I hate crumby bagels.

JANE: Wow! Do you think there’s a business there?

LILY: Hmmm. I’m always scared of sage.

SPEAR: I’m just scared of pot lucks. I know I’ll get leprosy from dropping an overheated Corningware casserole on my big toe…

LILY: That’s not how you get leprosy. It’s a…

SPEAR: I always feel that I should walk from my SUV carrying the damned casserole and screaming at the top of my lungs, “Make way! Make way. Unchic! Unchic! Don’t look. Hide your eyes!”

TOOTS: That makes you feel unchic? It would take more than a casserole to spoil my self image.

SPEAR: What’s artistic and avante garde about a flipping casserole, for pity sake?

JANE: You’re supposed to be the far-out one here. How come you’re stuck on casseroles, if they’re not what turns you on? Heh! Brakes! There’s a cop over there.

LILY: Yes. How about Plan B or C, there, Spear?

SPEAR: I hate wrapping stuff in a towel and sashaying in with it in behind my back in a plastic Price Chopper bag.

JANE: Hold that thought. I’m writing it down for you, Spear.

TOOTS: We’re having some great ideas, here. Heh, Spear, drag out that old sewing machine and throw something together for us, will you? I sure don’t have time to sew these days. Between trips for buying and selling, I don’t even have time to help Tim make the product any more. But I’d like something snappy to carry my contribution to the dinner.

SPEAR: You get into woman’s roll as nourisher here, and there’ll be consequences.

TOOTS: That reminds me. I have a home engineer. She can whip up a few things to freeze for these occasions. I’ll still need something nifty to carry it in.

SPEAR: Lawn mower chassis and a motor, meet your needs?

TOOTS: I’m going to a potluck. I’m not doing room service, for Pity sake.

LILY: Even olives would look better if I took them out of a fancy carrier.

SPEAR: Yeah. I can make carriers, but what the heck. I’m going to make some kits and people can express themselves.

LILY: Allow me to express myself? You’re the artist. You make it. I buy it. Ready made. I don’t have time to buy a kit.

TOOTS: Spear, why are you doing a hundred in a fifty zone?

SPEAR: To see if you could keep from commenting. I’m going to have a decoration party and people can get some R&R and make a great carrier, as well. If they don’t like what they made they can have one of mine for fifty percent off and Ill rescue what they did.

JANE: You drive a hard bargain.

TOOTS: So are you still feeling kitchenized, or has this new idea knocked the rebellion right out of you?

SPEAR: A great carrier is one thing, but maybe a competition to see who could take the greatest food might be an interesting idea.. I’ve got to admit that some of the stuff I’ve brought would die on sight if I dragged it out of anything classier than a Price Chopper bag.

LILY: What’s the matter with your Irish Soda bread? I like it. I’m always hoping for another potluck so you’ll bring some more and I can fill up on it.

SPEAR: Gotta eat something with the olives, eh?

TOOTS: So what are you going to make?

SPEAR: Well, I’m not so taken with kneading some dough into a circle anymore, slashing a cross in the top of it and flipping it onto a plate.

JANE: So what are you going to make? I like your soda bread, too. At least, I can eat that.

SPEAR: I could make it a bit more artistic… head, arms, a couple of legs and a belly button and I got a goddess.

LILY: You forgot the hooters. Spear, you’ve got to have hooters.

SPEAR: If I do hooters, what are you gonna do? You don’t want to get left in the dust, Lily?

LILY: I could make tapenade and put pita pieces around it and border it with black olives. I can set it up after work. I can do this.

SPEAR: Heh, Ladies are you into helping me get a workshop for these carriers up and going?

TOOTS: Better say yes, if you don’t want to walk.

LILY: I’m not very creative that way. But if you need some advice with a business plan, or some help with getting a web site up and going, why I’m your woman.

TOOTS: I’d love to make a carrier. I haven’t indulged myself in ages. I can do this. Are you going to have prizes or something?

SPEAR: Prizes? Isn’t the object to blow everybody away when you arrive with your fancy wrapper?

JANE: Spear, why don’t we research some stuff together. If I find something, I’ll pass it on…

SPEAR: Yeah, sure. Prizes for what?

LILY: On the net… for the best one…or the one you like the best, or the one the local potluck group likes the best …it’s your enterprise. You decide.

SPEAR: You’re right about that. Stupid. Oh God! He nearly hit that squirrel.

TOOTS: And you nearly hit him. I just love business. Now, what else do women do that drives them nuts?

SPEAR: No snide remarks. Why would you want to go there?

JANE: I get it. To find a need and fill it.

TOOTS: Find needs, embarrassment, whatever. Every discomfort is an opportunity

SPEAR: I guess so. I was so discouraged with doing fine art and trying to impact the fashion scene, but here, I’ve got something. Women all over the place insist on doing these damned pot lucks. I might as well get some money out of it as the next person.

TOOTS: You never know. My business is built on dandelions. Fields and fields of them. So Lily, don’t go and get fancy and forget the olives, now.

LILY: I bring the olives. How can you have a pot luck without olives?

JANE: I can’t imagine it, myself.