Short Skits for Long Lives by Ed Friedman includes
THE KEYS TO LIFE
From the Play
THE KEYS TO LIFE
We know we have to talk to our kids about driving, but how and when
do we have that talk with our parents?
Jim, 77 Suburban homeowner, widowed
Bev, 52 Jim’s daughter, married; one child at home, one in college
Kitchen of Jim’s home, a suburb outside a large metropolitan area
(Jim, 77 reading a newspaper in his kitchen. Bev, 52, his daughter enters)
BEV: Good morning Dad. Sorry I’m late, the traffic getting over the bridge was murder.
JIM: Hello, dear.
BEV: How are we today?
JIM: I can’t speak for you, but I’m doing well.
BEV: Good, I’d like to talk to you about something.
JIM: I’ve noticed that any discussion that comes with an introduction is always a problem.
BEV: Dad, none of this has to be problem. I just have a concern.
JIM: Which would be…?
BEV: Elizabeth’s wedding.
JIM: What about Elizabeth’s wedding? I’m not wild about her intended. He has no interest in the arts. A bad sign if you ask me, but it’s her choice. I think she could do better, but what do I know…
BEV: Dad I didn’t come here to discuss the groom. This is about you.
JIM: What about me? I’m not going to say anything. I’m the soul of discretion. I give it two years.
BEV: No Dad, I’m talking about how you’re getting there.
JIM: Where, to the wedding? Well I thought if I got an early start I could leave that morning. It’s pretty far…
BEV: Dad that’s my point. I think it’s too far for you to drive.
JIM: What are you talking about?
BEV: It’s a long drive and I’m concerned about you making the whole trip by yourself.
JIM: I’ve been driving my whole life. Don’t you think I have the sense to pull over somewhere if I get tired?
BEV: I think you may be asking too much of yourself.
JIM: This isn’t about Elizabeth’s wedding is it?
BEV: Dad, don’t be obtuse. You know what I’m talking about.
JIM: Why don’t you spell it out.
BEV: OK if that’s what you want. (beat) I’m concerned that you’re continuing to drive.
JIM: And why should that concern you?
BEV: Because you’ve been driving very erratically.
JIM: You think I’ve been driving erratically? Do you see how people are driving out there?