the talking heads experience

So, Tuesday’s daily play was a rather fun experience. A random question posted to my wall on Facebook prompted the initial idea and it progressed moment by moment in the writing. I had a great time with the playful voice and in the discovery of the two characters who were taking shape before my eyes. The ending was a bit of a surprise when it popped into my head, but once I’d seen what was to come it moved rather quickly to its close. I do hope others will do or have done this exercise. If you do or have then please share. I’d love to see what you came up with.  Cheers!

** I hope you’ll forgive the formatting. Copied from a word file into this particular format it automatically double-spaced everything. My apologies.


Ever Clever Carl

            “Hello there. What are you doing down there?”

“What am I doing? I’m more interested in knowing what it is you’re doing up there?”

“What’s that? I can’t hear you.”


“Eh? Hold on a minute.”


“There we have it. Now isn’t that better?”

“Whew! Better for you maybe. Just what have you been eating?”

“Mum’s spaghetti.”

“Ah, well, that explains the garlic.”

“Yeah, I love garlic.”

“So it seems.”

“Not to press the issue, but what were you doing down there?”

“I live down there.”

“You live… down there?”

“Yes, I think you’ve got the gist of it.”

“Hahahaha! You’ve got to be kidding me.”

“Are you going to do that again?”

“Laugh like that?”

“Maybe… why?”

“I’m just contemplating the wisdom of standing up again. I seems I don’t fare well with manquakes.”

“Manquakes? Ah, that’s clever.”


“Was that a smile?”

“What, couldn’t you tell?”

“Not really, my eyes aren’t so good. I just saw a little movement where your mouth should be.”

“I’m glad to know you can’t see sarcasm then.”

“So it was one of those smiles.”

“Yes, it was one of those smiles.”

“Then allow me to return it in kind.”

“You know, that was incredibly disturbing.”

“What? Come on, I think I have a rather nice smile. The ladies love it.”

“That may be so where you come from, but for me it’s downright scary.”

“How is that?”

“Put yourself in my place for a moment and think about it. Big, yellow teeth.”

“Hmmm. I think I see your point. Sorry about that.”


“So, uh, how do the ladies like your smile?”

“Did you just wink at me?”

“Come on, a fancy lad like you must be popular with the ladies.”

“Well, I do well enough.”

“Ha! Modest too. Hey what’s wrong?”

“I was just regretting my decision to stand up again.”

“Oh, sorry again. Never had that problem before.”

“Nor I.”

“So you really live down there huh?”

“Yes, I do. Would I guess correctly that you live up here?”

“I thought we’d established that.”

“Not directly. I felt a need to be certain.”

“I can’t believe I haven’t seen you before.”

“I can. The part that amazes me is that somehow I’ve missed seeing you.”

“Well, I don’t actually live here, here.”
“Oh, such a surprise.”

“Don’t start that again. I may be big, but I’m sensitive.”

“Indeed, biting sarcasm is my best defense.”

“You mean offense.”

“What? No, I certainly mean defense.”

“Well, it’s offensive!”

“And the best defense is a good offense. Point to me!”

“Is that some game you play?”

“What? Oh yes. Sorry, you aren’t from around her are you?”


“So I’ve been told.”

“Is everyone down there as rude as you are?”

“No, I’m actually considered a nice guy.”

“You call that nice?”
“It’s all in play. It’s a jest!”

“I don’t think I could live there.”

“Really? What do you joke about then?”

“We like clever play too, we just avoid making it personal.”

“Just out of curiosity, do your people ever give offense in jest?”

“Oh, there are times. We like to play pranks.”


“Yeah, pranks. Like hoisting a boy up the flagpole by his undergarments, that is if they manage to hold that long.”

“That’s barbaric.”

“Really? I never thought of it that way. We always catch him when they finally tear.”


“You are a strange creature. Did that give you a headache?”

“Wha? Yes, yes it is giving me a headache.”

“I’m sorry about that. Anything I can get you for it?”

“Somehow I doubt that would be of any help.”

“Yes, I see your point.”

“This has all been rather wonderful, and I’ve enjoyed meeting you… uh?”


“Carl… but I think I’d best return home to deal with my headache. That is, if you’d be so kind as to let be down?”

“Oh, oh, my apologies. Yes of course… uh?”


“Your name?”

“Oh. It’s James.”

“James? James Shivers?”


“You’ve gone all rigid. What’s wrong?”

“You said you didn’t know me.”

“I didn’t, but I was sent to find you.”

“You didn’t tell me that.”

“Well no, you kind of distracted me and I forgot to ask if you knew him. Oh but I’m lucky. You are him and that’s even better.”


“You know you’ve done that quite a few times as of late.”


“Gone silent.”

“I’m having a little trouble keeping up with all the questions my minds coming up with.”

“Ah, yes understandable. You’re a dentist, right?”

“I think I’m just going to pretend I’m not shocked by the things you seem to know about me or how anyone came by that information.”

“That might be wise.”

“So are you a dentist?”

“Yes. Why?”

“That’s why I’m here. We don’t really have dentists you see, and so by chance we came upon one of your kind who gave us your name.”

“How nice of him.”

“It was in fact. He spoke very highly of you, you know.”

“I’m so thrilled.”

“There you go with the sarcasm again. That’s a poor habit you have.”

“So you’ve told me. And?”

“We’d like to offer you a job. We would like you to train my people how to be dentists.”

“You really don’t have dentists, do you.”

“Please don’t look at my teeth that way. They aren’t that bad, are they? Don’t answer that. So, what do you say?”

“I really need to think this through. It would be a very long task and I’d have to leave my practice.”

“We’d pay a fair wage. Hey what are you thinking about, your eyes are positively gleaming.”

“Ha, nothing. Nothing at all. I suppose I can try it out. I’ve always hoped to teach at a university.”

“Ah good then. One more thing.”

“One more thing?”

“Yes. They want you to prove dentists really do fix teeth.”

“What?! Of course dentists… Nevermind.”

“I suppose you want me to fix that toothache of yours?”

“Ah see, you can be clever in a good way. Do you want to take a look?”

“Not really, but it seems I have no choice. Just do me a favor and hold your breath.”

“We’re really going to have to do something about this not nice thing.”

“Yes, yes. Now let me see here. Argghhhh!”


“Why thank you Dr. Shivers, for climbing right in without any help from me. Mr. Grimple will be furious, but he’ll have to give me his daughter’s hand now. I think I’m going to have to compose a song about this one. I’ll call it the ever clever Carl. Now, I best go get John to fix this cavity before I go see the lovely Miss Grimple.”

“Mr. Shivers, my dear man, you were only a snack to me,  but thanks to you I’ve won the bet and my bride to be!”


About Kirk

I enjoy life and have been blessed with many different experiences. An eye for the underlying truths that surround me accompanies a growing faith in Christ and God that informs my world and reveals small miracles and beauty surrounding me every day. This is the major reason I felt led to start Dance of 2 Companies - a dance studio where I can share all the little amazing things God's taught me through life as a dancer - about myself, about others, about marriage... and most importantly, about Him.
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