[Lawrence Krauser is making the complete text of several of his plays available to McSweeney’s readers. The first, Horrible Child, is available here. In this scene from the second play, Wall Street Made Simple, YOGI, a down-and-out forest ranger, converses with bartender SHOAL, casino manager TONY, and OLLIE. a regular.]
SCENE 15. Casino Bar.
SHOAL, TONY, OLLIE at bar. Enter YOGI.
YOGI: Fellow barflies, hear ye: I have been abducted!
YOGI: Snatched, studied, and safely returned. Shoal, I will take no No to my request for a pinch of your top-shelf Irish; you will note I have never before ordered precisely that; I will tell you that never before have I had occasion. Thirstier I have never been, and never so selective, aristocrat that I am. Do not deny me, Shoal. A dryer man never thought you so beautiful.
SHOAL: Just one shelf, Yogi.
YOGI: Then that supremely unique shelf let it be. A drink for a man with a tale to tell. Neat please for the shelf-reliant. You are feasting your eyes, if you have any appetite to see, upon a man who has known the carnal embrace of an alien!
TONY: Probably after a green card.
YOGI: Was she green? No she was not. She was no Saturday morning cartoon I can tell you. She appeared to me in most mature form. Most recognizable! I’m sure she would agree. Friends, I can take your ribbing without offence, for I stand and sit and drink as an acquaintance of a higher truth. I have been abducted by beings from another universe.
OLLIE: Thought you were one of ’em.
YOGI: Absolved, resurrected, transported, and safely returned. As a matter of fact yes I do think they took me for a kindred intelligence.
TONY: God help this planet!
YOGI: I was out in the woods in my anti-bear suit and the light from their ship reflected off me and they approached me. A triangular object, big as three football fields with lights on the corners and wings — Shoal, there is air in my glass. I like that shelf, it’s a dance-floor, thank you. Nature do abhor a vacuum.
OLLIE: See any bears tonight, Yogi?
YOGI: I saw past the bears, Ollie. You probably don’t know what I’m talking about; that’s OK, you’re a good man and I’m proud to snow you. I would like to buy you a drink. I would like to flood All your gates — Shoal, for everyone!
SHOAL: That’s very kind of you, Yogi, I’ll need to see the money.
YOGI: Shoal. At this very moment you may be talking to the father of a half-man, half-extraterrestrial child, if that’s not occasion for drinks all around, I’m a teetotaler till I die. That’s all I need is another paternity suit.
SHOAL: Cash up front, Yogi.
OLLIE: I was attacked by a bear one time.
TONY: How’s Hannah feel about you’re extraterrestrial affair?
YOGI: Hannah has been very supportive. Here is my cash up front.
SHOAL: Not cute.
I’m as dry as the crack in a cavern
as straight as the straightest tree
I’ve been so for an hour
and not to be sour
’twas a fucking eternity!
Come on, Shoal, on the house! Tony, on the house, come on!
OLLIE: Special occasion!
TONY: Every day’s a special occasion.
YOGI: That’s true. But this is truly unusual! Did you hear what I said, I was abducted — I’m sorry, I promised no cursing — I was seduced! Aw Christ. All right. You want a special occasion, people? I got a job. OK? Praise the lord, I got a job.
OLLIE: The aliens hired you?
YOGI: No, Ollie. The government.
SHOAL: YOU got a job?
OLLIE: Hey Shoal, maybe Yogi can get you a job bartending on his flying saucer.
YOGI: Here. I got proof. [produces a letter] Read that and tell me I don’t have a job. See who it’s from?
OLLIE: I hear they drink lots of Bacardi 51.
TONY [looks at letter]: What is this?
OLLIE: Get it, Tony? Bacardi 51?
YOGI: I have been hired by the government of Teddyville to escort our leader single-handedly through the glorious woodlands of Sanford Park.
OLLIE: Oooh I like that stationery — that’s good stock.
YOGI: Not bad for a down and out ranger!
TONY: I don’t believe this.
YOGI: The insignia, Tony, feel it. Bumpy, right?
SHOAL: The governor’s coming to Left Teddy?
YOGI: And through it, guided by Yours Truly, fill ’er up please.
OLLIE: No, I heard Left Teddy.
YOGI: You heard right. Shoal? Shoal: I promised myself, I’m entitled to break a promise to myself.
OLLIE: Consistency is the hop goblin…
TONY: How’d they find you? Why’d they pick you?
YOGI: Be like riding a bicycle. Shoal, I knew you’d be there for me. I’m gonna introduce you to the governor, I’m gonna introduce everyone here, anyone buys me a drink I’ll introduce you to the governor, that’s it, fill ’er up, little bit more — thank you. A toast! A toast to our governor and to our great bottums up!