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Character: Build It Here

The Italian Suit

ACT I    Curtain Opens on:

Scene 1.  JAKE & LISA’S KITCHEN

Lisa chops vegetables while sipping wine... bottle of rare vintage Cabernet Franc sits on the pale green marble counter. The late afternoon sun streams through finely-paned windows. Lisa’s husband, Jake, stands looking out French doors, toward the garden... talking on his cell phone...

JOSH (on phone)

I’ve got a job interview tomorrow at that production company in the city.

JAKE

Hey, that’s good news!

JOSH

Yeah, I’m stoked. Listen, I gotta ask a favor. I need to borrow a suit...

JAKE

I’ll see what I’ve got. Stop by after dinner.

JOSH

Thanks, bro. I’ll see ya then.

LISA

Who was that?

JAKE

Oh, just Josh, needing a favor - again...

LISA

Like what?

JAKE

He’s got a job interview tomorrow and needs to borrow a suit. I told him to stop by after dinner even though I won’t be here. I have to meet with a client this evening. You can let Josh borrow that old blue suit that’s in the back of my closet.

LISA

Okay. I know which suit you’re talking about. It’s the one you haven’t worn since college. You think it will fit him?

JAKE

Yeah, that’s the one. He can try it on if he needs to.

ACT I

Scene 2.  JAKE & LISA’S BEDROOM - THAT EVENING

Lisa opens door to Jake’s closet... Josh gasps in astonishment..

LISA

Looks like a department store, huh?

JOSH

Yeah, it sure does.

Lisa walks to the back of the closet... shoves dozens of suits to the front of the rack then finally finds the blue suit...

LISA

Here, this is the one that Jake said you can borrow. I think you should try it on first.

Josh takes suit into bathroom... comes out...

LISA (looking disappointed)

Hmm... I don’t think it’s fitting you quite right. Let me see what else Jake has...

Josh watches as Lisa pushes suits aside, one after another... then hands a charcoal pin striped suit to Josh.

LISA

I think this one will look fine. Check it out...

Josh strides out of bathroom, Lisa’s face has the same disappointed look...

LISA

I don’t think that one is working either. Let’s find something better. You’ve got to look like you’re executive material when you show up for that interview tomorrow.

Lisa sets out on a new search in the vast land of her husband’s suits. She picks over each one with a critical eye, shaking her head, rejecting them all, until she arrives at the front of the rack where a new garment bag hangs prominently from the rest.

LISA (smiling as she unzips bag)

Well, I wonder what’s in here? Ooohh... will you look at this! Josh, I think we’ve got it! 

JOSH (looking at label in suit jacket)

This is a hand-tailored Italian suit. I can’t borrow this. It doesn’t even look like Jake has worn it yet.

LISA (lowers voice)

Listen, you’ve been working hard at finding a job. I don’t care if Jake gets upset about this. Life has been good to him, but it hasn’t been fair to you. Now put it on and let me see how it looks!

Josh emerges from the bathroom with a newfound air of confidence. The two of them stand grinning as they admire the suit in the full-length mirror.

LISA

That’s it! I want you to have the suit on when you return it tomorrow. Jake needs to see you in it. Call me before you come to make sure he’s here.

ACT I

Scene 3.  JAKE & LISA’S BEDROOM - LATER, SAME EVENING

JAKE (fuming)

What! I can’t believe you loaned him my best suit. I just picked it up from the tailor. I haven’t even worn it yet! He better get that job... 

LISA (interrupting)

Or what? Look, don’t make this about winning or losing. It doesn’t matter if he gets the job or not. What matters is that we gave our best for Josh.

Jake flops across the bed, hands behind his head, staring at the ceiling...

JAKE

You sure are one gutsy woman.

LISA

Takes one to know one.

Lisa lays down on the bed, snuggling next to Jake, tussling his hair, as the two of them roll off the bed in laughter.

ACT II

Scene 1.  JAKE & LISA’S PORCH - NEXT EVENING

Lisa sets a tray of appetizers on the porch table with a pitcher of lemonade... then hides an ice bucket of champagne, a bowl of raspberries and three glasses behind the fern. Jake sits on porch swing as they wait for Josh. Music blasts from car as Josh pulls up to the curb... opens door... hops out with a skip in his step and a grin on his face.

JAKE

Hey, bro, that sure is a mighty fine suit!

Lisa wraps her arms around Jake, gives him a sweet kiss... then gets the champagne, glasses and raspberries from behind the fern... and the curtain closes to the sound of glasses clinking in congratulation. 

Curtain Closes

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Cover photo by Kathleen Franks

Background image by Getty Images

© 2014 - 2017 Kathleen Franks