ethics and the men’s restroom

February 18th, 2008 by under Uncategorized. No Comments.

We’re taking a newly restructured ethics course this semester. It’s two credits, for a grade, when it used to be a required zero-credit course. We have three major requirements:

1. Write and perform an original play that explores an ethical issue (this is a big deal, and done at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center)
2. Write and perform a “role play” skit in class for discussion (this is a smaller deal)
3. Lead a group discussion with a huge group of your fellow classmates

The work required of us is sort of a controversial issue among my classmates, but I will ignore that for the sake of entertainment…blogertainment, I guess. I’m a playwright for no. 1 and had attended a mandatory playwright workshop. It was meant to help us generate new ideas for develop characters for our brief play.

This activity asked us to create two characters and have them act out a dialogue-less scene. They were to interact with one another through actions, when finally, one character would be pushed to speak. Here’s mine, to help the Monday blues pass by faster. This is original, what I wrote in class, so please don’t copy this. 🙂

The characters are Fred Frederickson and Ed Eddington, and Ed is already in the men’s restroom at Sushi Awesome.

The door to the men’s restroom at Sushi Awesome swings open. Fred’s face appears in the doorway. He scans the restroom and walks deliberately to the urinal next to the man and faces the wall.

Ed is acutely aware someone has entered the restroom and stood next to him. His head turns slightly in the direction of the person. There are four urinals, and the man has chosen the one right next to Ed. Ed’s body tenses visibly. His eyebrow twitches.

Fred silently fiddles with the zipper on his jacket. He is careful to stare ahead and studies the starburst pattern on the tiles in front of him.

Ed nervously turns his head away from Fred as he zips his fly and hurriedly moves the rest of his body away.

Fred takes care of business as he stares straight ahead. His movements are quick and sure.

Ed turns quickly on his heel and walks in short steps to the sink across the room. He dispenses soap first, then turns the faucet on with his left hand – hot water first. It burns his hand and he gasps noiselessly, then adds cold water. He begins to lather.

Fred slowly zips his fly and turns slowly, then saunters to the sink next to Ed. He turns on the water with both hands, equal amounts of each, and waits for the water to warm up before he places his hands under the faucet. He then dispenses soap onto his right hand, and begins to lather.

Ed rinses his hands off completely, and tears off a paper towel with his right hand, eyeing Fred cautiously. Fred returns quietly returns his gaze. Ed looks away, but Fred keeps watching. Ed looks up, and blushes when he sees Fred is still looking at him.

Ed is visibly perturbed and blurts out, fists clenched, “Why did you have to come to the bathroom too? Only women go to the bathroom in groups, man.”