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Asleep at the Wheel (1 Viewer)


This is a one act I wrote last year for a class.

- 20, sick of dating, average looking, frequent visitor of the restaurant, knows waiter by name, somewhat reserved; wearing a suit and tie.
ADAM (VO) - This is Adam’s mind. It will be heard aloud by the use of an audio recorder. The lines labeled: Adam (VO), are to be prerecorded and played when they appear. His mind is more pessimistic, always putting Adam down.
GEN- 19, attractive, always happy, outgoing, and wearing a nice dress.
GEORGE (the waiter) - Usual waiter, makes sure everything is going fine, quasi-friend of Adam, waiter uniform.
Extras- 3 couples, one just sitting down, another already eating, and the third coming after the second leaves.

Scene- At a nice, expensive restaurant where Adam brings most of his dates.

Stage- Table for Adam and Gen is downstage left, upstage center is another table, and the third is center stage right. Stage right is kitchen, stage left is entrance.

Props- tables, chairs, candles, silverware settings, wine and water glasses, bread, and basket.

(Lights up. Enter Adam and George from stage left)

GEORGE: Usual table, Adam?

ADAM: Yeah, George, that’d be fine.

GEORGE: How long will the lucky lady be tonight?

ADAM: (sitting down) Well, if she shows up, she should be here about five.

GEORGE: Alright. Well, good luck then, Adam. I hope this one does show up.

ADAM: Me too, George, me too.

(George quickly attends to the others and exits stage right.)

ADAM (VO): What are you doing here Adam ole buddy? You know she’s not coming.

ADAM: But if she did, what if she’s the one? The one and only one for me. The woman that makes everything bad in the world seem nonexistent; as if everything is perfect; make you want to do nothing but hold her until the end.

ADAM (VO): (Frustrated) Fat chance Adam, you know it won’t happen; you’re just a dreamer, that’s all you ever do. The only woman you could hold “until the end” is Charlton Heston’s metallic mistress.

(George walks by)

ADAM: Hey, George, could I get some bread?

GEORGE: Oh yeah, sure, Adam. Sorry ‘bout that. Almost forgot.

ADAM: Thanks.

(George exits stage right)

ADAM (VO): Because that’s all you can do; can’t sleep, or have fun, just eat.

ADAM: What else am I supposed to do? Be the puppy in the window, looking for an owner? I’ve played that role too many disappointing times to do it again.

ADAM (VO): You’re not the puppy anymore, Adam. You’re getting to be the old dog who doesn’t chase the Frisbee; just waiting for someone to put you down.

(George enters carrying bread and water)

GEORGE: Here you go Adam. (sets down bread and refills his water)

ADAM: Thanks again, George.

(George starts to walk away)

ADAM: Oh, George; how many minutes has it been?

GEORGE: Seven…. I’d give her only five more, if I were you Adam. (Walks away)

ADAM: Oh, ok. Thanks.

ADAM (VO): Time’s a bitch, ain’t it, Adam? You keep waiting for something to happen all the time, and then when it comes you are never satisfied; so you keep on waiting. And they tell you this shit that life happens not at an event but the time between them.

ADAM: (muttering) Stop it. Stop it. Stop it…

ADAM (VO): If life is a waiting period, don’t you question what you’re waiting for?

ADAM: (aggravated and yelling) STOP IT!

(Everyone in the restaurant looks over at Adam disgustingly. Lights flicker. Enter Gen from stage left, behind Adam, and puts her hands over his eyes.)

GEN: Hey, you! It’s me, Gen.

ADAM: Gen? (Stands up) Gen as in my date Gen?

GEN: Well only if you’re Adam…. You are Adam, right?

ADAM: Yeah, sorry, yeah. I’m Adam.

(He nervously wipes his hands on his coat and puts a hand out as to shake but she goes in and hugs him.)

GEN: Well then, I guess I’m your date, Gen. I’m glad it was you, Adam, I assumed since you were the only one here alone. Oh, and sorry about the eye covering, I’m weird like that.

ADAM: Oh no, that’s fine, it shows character. (beat) Here, have a seat.

(Gen follows Adam to the other side of the table, Adam pulls chair out, and Gen sits down while Adam pushes in the chair.)

GEN: Why thank you, Adam, only two minutes in and I already like this date a lot better than most.

ADAM: Don’t thank me, thank my parents; it’s how they raised me.

GEN: I’ll try to remember to send a telegram.

ADAM: Do they still send telegrams?

GEN: Probably not.


(Awkward silence)

ADAM: But really, a lot better than most?

GEN: You wouldn’t believe how many men out there seemingly only care about a piece of ass for tonight.

ADAM: I sure I could understand, let me guess…

TOGETHER: A lot! (Chuckling)


ADAM: How do you know I’m not after that myself?

GEN: I would’ve known if you were after that from Oscar and Kate. And I wouldn’t be here if that was the case.

ADAM: True. What else have they told you about me?

GEN: Well… they’ve said nothing but good things about you…

ADAM: Oh, come on, be serious.

GEN: No, I am. They’ve said you’re a gentleman, as you’ve already shown me; smart, caring… and impotent.

ADAM: They told you that?!

GEN: I’m kidding!

ADAM: (awkward laugh) Well we all can’t be perfect.

(Both awkwardly laugh)

GEN: Yeah…


(George enters)

GEORGE: More bread, Adam?

ADAM: Yes, please. Another water also.

GEORGE: Sure thing.

(George exits)

GEN: What have Oscar and Kate told you about me?

ADAM: Oscar says that you’re very cute.

GEN: (kidding) Guilty as charged!

(Both chuckle)

ADAM: And Kate keeps telling me that… (beat)

GEN: That…?

ADAM: I’d feel embarrassed if I said it…

GEN: You’re pretty much committed to saying it now. You just can’t start saying something and then not say it at all. Leaving me in suspense is the worst thing you can do now.

ADAM: Ok, ok.… She said that I have to go on this date because we would be (beat) perfect for each other.

GEN: Really?

ADAM: See? Now I feel embarrassed.

GEN: Well, so far she’s right.

ADAM: Now you’re just saying that to stop my embarrassment.

(George enters with bread sets it down and exits)

ADAM: Did you want any bread?

GEN: Sorry, but I have to admit I’m not hungry. And no, I wasn’t just saying that.

ADAM: I’m glad you came, Gen. To tell you the truth, I didn’t think you would show up.

GEN: I wouldn’t miss a date with the man Oscar and Kate described to me.

ADAM: Gen, this sounds silly, but… from what I know and see in you already, you’re turning out to be someone I won’t want to let go of. (Beat) Oh, now I’ve made a fool of myself. Forget I even said it.

GEN: No, Adam. I feel the same. (beat) Let’s test how good for each other we are.

ADAM: I’m game. You start.

GEN: Political party?

ADAM: Lean slightly to the right.

GEN: Depends on the candidate.

ADAM: Abortion?

GEN: Life.

ADAM: Choice; but if I were the woman, life.

GEN: Understandable.

ADAM: Iraq?

GEN: Should’ve solved it democratically.

ADAM: More people would’ve been killed if Hussein were still there.

GEN: Ideal place to live and why?

ADAM: Midwest or far Northeast because of the low crime and good place to raise children.

GEN: As long as it’s not in a big city; number of children?

ADAM: Three.

GEN: Two, but I can settle at three.

ADAM: One last question… your ideal companion?


ADAM: Gen, I know this is crazy but, I want to spend the rest of my life with you. I knew I was waiting for something, I’m just so glad it was you.

GEN: So maybe we’re not perfect, but I think it could work Adam. Adam?

(Lights flicker. Gen stands up and walks away, Adam’s head collapses onto the bread basket. Enter George, he’s shaking Adam and saying his name.)

GEORGE: Adam? Adam?

ADAM: What? George what’s happening? Where’d she go?

GEORGE: Adam, I have a message for you from Kate, she called saying that your date got into a car accident on the way over, and it’s pretty serious. She’s sorry she forgot about you and didn’t want you to think you were being stood up; she’ll call you later. You got that buddy?

ADAM: You mean…. Oh. I understand.

GEORGE: Adam, you better get home; you don’t look so good. I’ll make sure a taxi is waiting.

ADAM: Thanks George, I appreciate it.

(George exits)

ADAM (VO): I told you Adam, you’re destined to this lonely life, you’re not what anyone is looking for, and dreams are dying before your eyes. No one cares; to them you’re just a glance, another face.

ADAM: No, as long as there’s some bleak hope, I can’t give up.

(Enter George)

GEORGE: Adam, your taxi’s outside pal.

ADAM: Thanks again, George, but I think home can wait. I better make sure she’s alright. You never know.

(Adam stands up and exits stage left. Lights down.)

That's it. It seems short to me and I am not sure about the ending. Your critiques and help would be greatly appreciated.


Senior Member
I got a little confused at the "beat" parts. Is it a "punch line" kind of beat...or...something else? Because everytime i read "beat" i kinda heard a little "du dun, tchee" (or however you care to spell it) and then a couple chuckles from an imaginary audience. Weird imagination, sorry. But it WAS pretty good. I did a double take at the screen when George said that Adam's date was in a car accident. I have to ask...did she die? I gotta know.


Senior Member
To be honest, this definitely needs more elements of comedy. The "beat" I don't understand at all as well. Date in a car accident? That's a little aggressive. What demographic are you going for here? As I always say, the parts to your script that you feel the most uncomfortable about are the ones you need to double check

Asphyxiation Len

Senior Member
A 'beat' is a pause, and I don't think, technically, you are meant to use them in plays - mammamaia?


(not a critique, but an opinion)

I hate to say it, but I just found it a little naive, and I couldn't really get interested for that reason, and yeah, I got he was having a daydream.

Would he really have gone to see if Gen was okay? He doesn't really know her after all. (maybe i'm just not a very caring person?)

Not too badly written though I thought. I hope I don't sound harsh, I didn't think it was awful.
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