Charges cleared in laptop case: A one-act play

Characters

The judge: A high-strung man wearing a black robe

The bailiff/electrician: A vacant-looking man wearing a hard hat and rubber gloves, and clutching a pair of yellow-handled wire cutters

The court reporter: A quiet woman with keen ears and fast fingers

The professor: Unseen because he’s locked in a laptop case

The student: An overly avid texter walking near 13th and Louisiana streets

Scene

The QuickWire Courtroom

Judge: Bailiff, prepare to clear the professor.

Bailiff:  Yes, your honor.

Judge: Are you ready, professor?

Professor: Mphhmerpac!

Judge: I’ll take that as a yes. Bailiff, clear!

Bailiff: Which wire do I cut, your honor?

Judge: How should I know? You’re the one who went to electrical school.

Bailiff: I got my degree online. I never learned about battery charges.

Professor: Mphhmerpac!

Judge: Just cut one of the wires already!

Bailiff: (eyes closed, teeth clenched) Here goes.

Flash! Sizzle! Pop!

Judge: Oh, no.

Bailiff: Your honor?

Judge: Bailiff, please clean up the mess from this laptop case.

Bailiff: Yes, your honor. What should I do with the battery?

Judge: Just throw it out the back door when no one’s looking.

Court reporter: What will we tell the press, your honor? People will ask, you know.

Judge: We’ll tell them that we cleared the professor we found in the laptop battery case. That is true.

Student: (after calling 911) I’d like to report a battery.

Anthony, co-worker across the hall from me: People know what they’re saying when they write headlines like that, don’t they? I mean, they’re just trying to be funny, right?

Judge: Next case!

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