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**PRINT: FRIENDS FROM CINCINNATI: Installment 24 features this part coming-of-age short by Chicago's Patrick Somerville, author of the Trouble collection of shorts out in 2006. | PAST BROADSHEETS |

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C.T. Ballentine

M1 = man 1 (aka Steve Bill)
M2 = man 2 (aka Jeff George)

(side note: In an attempt to save my precious wrists from carpal tunnel I will further shorten M1 and M2 to simply 1 and 2. I do not recommend you try this because you are an amateur, whereas I am not. I am a seasoned veteran of a professional [side note to a side note: double first name names are cool].)

(You can probably hear some ambient rustling of leaves or something because the characters are sitting out in a park somewhere, probably in New York City. Why not? I've never been to New York City but a lot of people live there and a lot of people visit, so the odds are good that a greater number of people will have an emotional, sentimental connection with the setting as a fair percentage of people who have been to New York City have been to a park of some sort. People enjoy parks. Come to think of it, even more people live in Tokyo. Do they have parks in Tokyo? Never mind, better stick with New York City.)

(rustling sounds of a New York City park)

1- Beautiful day.

2- (murmur of assent)

1- Lovely weather.

2- (murmur of assent)

1- I was just looking at that beautiful oak tree yonder. Plenty of shade. Praise the lord for these precious oak trees.

2- FOOL! I am trying to do a crossword puzzle. Can you not see that? Stop molesting me with your mindless blither blather.

1- (is silent. It is not the silence of momentary, peaceful reflection, rather the silence of hurt feelings, an entirely different sound. If you cannot tell the difference, you simply should not be producing radio plays.)

2- (making the sound of someone looking up) Furthermore, this tree was not brought to us by your oppressive God. It was brought here by an acorn and preserved by the diligent hard work of the people, who have fought the capitalist oppressors who wish to turn this refuge of nature into a parking lot for their carnivals of corruption.

1- Good Lord made those there people, who saved the park.

2- FOOL! Copulation made the people and the system has oppressed them. I tire of your shenanigans, you subservient lap dog. Leave me to my puzzle.

1- Did that puzzle myself earlier today, I did. Real doozy.

2- For a man of my intellect it is but a walk in the park. A park much like this one. An easy walk, where a man can find peace of mind because he is not badgered by drooling old morons and their unceasing chatter. Look here, 27 across, seven letters, the answer is oaktree; the clue is born from an acorn. The clue, you will notice, is not gift from God.

1- I reckon God made the acorn.

p>2- (loud sigh)

(there is the sound of struggle and the sound of a sturdy thump on the head as if made by a a large though easily concealable object)

1- Help! Help! You see that? That man stole my wallet!

2- Of course you would say that. Simply because the man is black and well dressed he must be a stealer of wallets.

1- But he stole my wallet! Look, my head is bleeding.

2- Oh, that's just fine. You've bled all over my paper. Good thing you've only bled on the advice columns and have left my puzzle untarnished. Do go bleed over there, please.

1- I'm dying!

2- Oh you old cranky rich white people! Everything is travesty! A bump on the head and you're dying. What about the pain of working people? That's real pain.

1- (making the sound of someone dying)

2- (makes the sound of a momentary, peaceful reflection)

(there is the sound here of a wing tip kicking a dead body)

2- Hey buddy. You said you knew the Bible right? I need a three-letter word for biblical vessel.

Jogger passing by, henceforth referred to as Man 3 or simply 3- (breathlessly shouting) ARK!

2- Oh, right then. Thank you, good sir!

3- Don't mention it.

(At this point, if you are uncertain of the intellectual aptitude of your listener, it may be wise to include a short explanation of the moral of the story so that the message of this play may still be imparted to lesser minds. If you are broadcasting on a station that plays either dance music or 70s rock then this is essential. If you do not already understand the moral of this radio play, then you have no business producing it.)