This Saturday (tomorrow!!) will be Fools Play Improv’s only show in August. It’ll be at 8:00 PM at Tacoma Youth Theatre in downtown Tacoma. In order to prepare for this event, the Fools shared some of their most treasured summer memories. Here they are:
HILARY’S SUMMER OF 1994
Young Hilary knew summer camp would be hell, but her mother would have none of it. “You’ll make friends, you’ll get outside, you’ll earn merit badges,” she reassured Hilary as they drove toward Lake Native Word For Boys And Girls’ Camp.
“Mom,” moaned Hilary, “I think you have to be a scout to go to scout camp,” protested Hilary. “Can’t we just go home?”
“Nonsense,” her mother chided. “We’re here.” They pulled into the campsite, boys and girls playing everywhere. Hilary grabbed her backpack and opened the passenger door. “Now let’s get you registered,” her mother cooed. “And remember to smile! That cute counselor boy is looking your way.”
Hilary winced. “Mom, he’s way too old for me!”
Hilary’s mother removed her sunglasses and gave the boy a once-over from behind the windshield. “Oh, he’s sixteen, tops,” she laughed. “When I was your age…”
Hilary ran out of the car and into the crowd, hoping to lose her mom and survive the weeks ahead.
During that time, the campers learned to kayak, tie knots, reveal their feelings with art therapy, sing songs, and make tampons. Hundreds of kids sitting at long wooden tables in a longhouse that only Mr. Jerson who ran the camp had keys to. There, in an assembly line, they were each part of a process.
One group of kids carefully stuffed each tube with fluff. Another sewed them shut using a stitch they had learned for applying merit badges. At another station the children carefully applied the cardboard applicator.
“This is a sweatshop!” Hilary protested.
“No, it’s not,” said the cute counselor boy. “These things would absorb any sweat and cause the company to reject the product. That’s why we have air conditioners in the longhouse.”
And so Hilary, like the rest of the campers, worked grueling hours hand crafting hygiene products destined to line dollar store shelves in days to come.
“I’ve got to strike back,” she told Benny one night in their cabin.Benny was the only girl Hilary had befriended. They had met when another camper offered Hilary five dollars and a merit page in Aeronautics to abandon Benny on the island in the middle of the lake during a canoe outing. Hilary kept the bribe, but spared Benny, who now said “What are you going to do?”
Hilary thought about it. “I’m going to do all the counselors’ drugs,” she replied.
CHRIS & MIKE’S SUMMER OF 1997
It was the Summer of 1997. Chris was glued to the TV, his hands guiding him through the just-released StarFox 64. As Chris blasted enemy ships, his brother Mike took a walk outside in the sun. But when Mike returned, he had something in his arms. “This poor cat must have gotten run over,” said Mike. Chris looked up from his game. “That’s no cat,” he exclaimed. “That’s Fox McCloud!”
“What?!” gasped Mike. “You mean from your video game? But how is that possible?”
“Quiet,” gestured Chris, “he’s trying to talk.”
The furry animal Mike carried was badly hurt with visible sores and charred clothing. “An…” it muttered, “Andross…”
“Who’s Andross?” Mike stammered. “Is he from your game, Chris?”
“Beats me, ” Chris shrugged. “I only play this for the pleasurable sensation of the rumble pack.”
Mike and Chris squished their injured companion into a cat carrier and sped toward the vet in their mom’s mini van. Bu they weren’t alone. Screaming down the freeway came several of the exciting, deadly enemy ships and characters from the game. Chris dodged and weaved as the invaders blasted the road.
“I thought my life was crazy before,” blinked Mike, “but now this… This is crazy!”
“No,” said Chris prophetically. “Now this is podracing.” He zoomed the mini van under an overpass that all the enemy spacecraft collided with, resulting in their explosive defeat.
At the vet, the doctor merely shook his head. “The wounds are too severe, and bare the tell-tale signs of having been inflicted by a space monkey,” he sighed.
Fox looked up at the brothers who tried to save his life. “You…” he breathed, “you are the true heroes.” With that, his heart stopped.
“Fox! Fox, come on, you’re okay!” Mike cried. “You’ve got extra lives! Or power ups! Or something…”
“This isn’t a video game!” snapped Chris. “He’s gone. He’s…”
Fox’s body calcified and he became a life-sized amiibo.
LARAMIE’S SUMMER OF 2010
Laramie had everything he needed to enjoy the beach – save one thing: A tan. The kind of even, shimmering tan that would impress the girls and intimidate his rivals. But getting that ultimate, bronzed coating meant lying on display under the sunlight in public where others might get a blinding look at his pale body. Laramie wasn’t willing to do that. Not for anything.
In order to be the tanned, you must be seen untanned. How could he crack this chicken-and-egg puzzle? The tanning salon offered private booths, but cost more than Laramie could afford. “I’ll make my own tanning bed,” he reasoned. “All I’ll need is a really powerful toaster and a genetic resistance to cancer.”
A few days later, Laramie eyed his creation: A sheet of aluminum foil in which he, the subject, would wrap himself. A defective toaster oven. Bottled spray-tan. Bottled Gatorade. A boom box. Cups, lubricants and magazines. Doilies for taste. Laramie climbed into his foil cloak and set the toaster oven to “Bagel”. Heat waves beamed down on him from the exposed coils, making him sweat off the film of suntan-causing-spray that clung to his skin.
“This is how a superhero might accidentally be created,” he mused.
NEXT WEEK: The exciting debut of the Unbelievable Tanman!
JOSH & JAMIE’S PRESENT DAY
Jamie loved eating fresh Summer strawberries picked right from the vine of Josh’s backyard garden. Josh had tried various pesticides to discourage Jamie, but he seemed able to eat anything, no matter how many slugs or dogs it vaporized.
Finally Josh went out into the yard with a hose to spray Jamie away. Jamie pushed the hose out of Josh’s hands and they began to wrestle over the strawberry plants. The sprinklers went off. They both got real wet and it was clinging to their clothes and everything. Strawberry juice and fresh garden mud coated their bodies. Some of the neighbors were pretending to text at their windows, but they were really Vining it. “This is some good shit,” said an elderly neighbor.
Finally Josh crawled to the perimeter of the garden, panting. He lit a cigarette. Jamie planted himself next to Josh, but didn’t look at him. After several long moments, Jamie finally spoke. “So what was that about?” he asked.
There you have it. Hope to see you in the audience at the show! BE THERE!