Saturday, February 25, 2012

The Zoo Story

I just finished a book called Absurd Drama in which there are four plays...

1. Amédée or How to Get Rid of it, by Eugène Ionesco
2. Professor Taranne, by Arthur Adamov
3. The Two Executioners, by Fernando Arrabal
4. The Zoo Story, by Edward Albee (I liked this one so much I read it twice)

I enjoyed Amédée and The Zoo Story the most out of the four. The other two just seemed sort of obvious, or not as absurd as I was hoping. Here's part of a speech ("The Story of Jerry and the Dog!") from The Zoo Story I really like...

It's just ... it's just that ... [JERRY is abnormally tense, now.] ... it's just that if you can't deal with people, you have to make a start somewhere. WITH ANIMALS ! [Much faster now, and like a conspirator] Don't you see.? A person has to have some way of dealing with SOMETHING. If not with people ... SOMETHING. With a bed, with a cockroach, with a mirror ... no, that's too hard, that's one of the last steps. With a cockroach, with a ... with a ... with a carpet, a roll of toilet paper ... no, not that, either ... that's a mirror, too; always check bleeding. You see how hard it is to find things ? With a street corner, and too many lights, all colours reflecting on the oily-wet streets ... with a wisp of smoke, a wisp ... of smoke ... with ... with porno. graphic playing cards, with a strong-box . . . WITHOUT A LOCK ... with love, with vomiting, with crying, with fury because the pretty little ladies aren't pretty little ladies, with making money with your body which is an act of love and I could prove it, with howling because you're alive; with God. How about that? WITH GOD WHO IS A COLOURED QUEEN WHO WEARS A KIMONO AND PLUCKS HIS EYEBROWS ! WHO IS A WOMAN WHO CRIES WITH DETERMINATION BEHIND HER CLOSED DOOR ... with God who, I'm told, turned his back on the whole thing some time ago ... with ... some day, with people. [JERRY sighs the next word heavily.] People. With an idea; a concept. And where better, where ever better in this humiliating excuse for a jail, where better to communicate one single, simple-minded idea than in an entrance hall? Where? It would be A START! Where better to make a beginning ... to understand and just possibly be understood ... a beginning of an understanding, than with ... [Here JERRY seems to fall into almost grotesque fatigue] ... than with A DOG. Just that; a dog. [Here there is a silence that might be prolonged for a moment or so; then JERRY wearily finishes his story.] A dog.

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