Field of Nightmares. Or – doing the dirt on the Flyers pitch.
ACT ONE: SCENE 1
[Action takes place in the bar of a sports club near an airport in Fingal, north of Dublin in Ireland.]
[Fran is behind the bar. Enter Burke]
Burke: Good morning Fran. Tis freezing.
Fran: Ah it’s the Usual Suspect coming in today. Good Morning Burke. In the name of goodness stop whistling.
[Burke looks at Fran in surprise]
Burke: A glass of coke Fran.
[Enter a small old woman in a black cloak]
Burke: Good morning ma’am.
Fran: Good morning ma’am. Ah tis the widow Alsaa, long time no see. What it’ll be?
Widow: I’m not after a drink Fran. It’s something else.
Fran: Are you changing the bar again? Not going for those wooden dividers again?
Widow: No this is about the grounds outside. Heard you’re an honest man.
[Burke whistles in. Fran looks at Burke in surprise]
Fran: I am. Is it about locking up the main gate? Or building a road along the tennis courts? Or what is it?
Widow: It’s the field right at the back, way over in the corner. It's up for grabs.
Fran: There’s no demand for land now, but I’ll get you the best deal.
Burke: Eh I know that field – Betty the Bull plays there.
Widow: Only up to the end of the 2010 season.
Fran: The s will hit the f now.
Widow: Fran whoever wants it most will get it.
Fran: I told you to cut that out.
Burke: Betty the Bull will go nuts.
Fran: Business is business with old widow ALSAA. Sure didn’t she charge that lovely gal from Leevale for using the track, the Olympic hurdler.
Burke: Just saying. The Bull won’t like it. He was there this twenty years. He was there when the cows used be lined up looking over the fence along left field, watching matches. And he dug out the hedge in right field and levelled the ditch. And got rid of that pagoda they had and put up the roof on sticks that has no real use. And put in those trees in a nice arc. And that excuse for a backstop with the holes in it. No-one will be allowed take his field.
[Doreen enters behind bar. Fran exits]
[Betty and Ebbsie enter]
Betty: Was old widow ALSAA here?
Doreen: Just left.
Ebbsie: Was she talking about the Flyers field?
Betty: Two pints and a basket of victory chips.
Burke: She’s thinking of handing over the Flyers pitch.
Betty the Bull: Our pitch? It can’t be used for other sports with the trees there. And it’s too far away from even the small car-park.
Burke: What if another softball team wants it?
Betty [going apoplectic]: There’s no other team out here, and everyone has their own pitch anyway.
Ebbsie; That’s the Flyers pitch.
Doreen: It’s widow ALSAA’s actually.
Betty: Where’s my victory chips?
[Enter Fran. Doreen goes off to actually order the chips]
Fran: Why the long face Bull?
Burke: That’s a horse joke.
Betty: Is widow ALSAA thinking of letting someone else use our pitch? That’s the Flyers pitch. We filled in the rabbit holes. And rescued the lost foul balls from the nettles beyond right field. And tried to keep the Blazzers cars of it every year when they drove down and pretended they didn’t know. We had blitzes when no-one else had their own blitzes. That’s our land.
Doreen [from the darts room]: It’s widow ALSAA’s actually.
Ebbsie [mockingly]: Id middow malsa makchilly.
Fran: What can you do?
Betty: Is this on Sportztalk yet?
Doreen [still hiding in the darts room and not looking for Corina]: Will ye go way with your sportztalk! There’s 27 likes on facebook and it’s trending on all social media.
[Betty looks cross]: Is she talking about computers?
Ebbsie [reading his phone]: Yeah looks like some crowd are making plans for it. There’s an article in this blog about digging up the pitch.
[Burke and Fran look at each other]
Betty: What are ye saying ya ape?
Ebbsie: Says they’re going to… let’s see.. “2Pak Softball blah blah blah conjunction with ALSAA… pleased to announce blah blah 2Pak Park; the first dirt Softball Diamond in Ireland”.
All: Shut up whistling!
Betty: Did someone text you all that?
All [holding their heads in their hands]: He hasn’t a clue.
Ebbsie [patiently]: I can read the web on this, it’s a i-Phone Betty.
Betty: An ‘I’ phone? Doesn’t that beat Banagher and Banagher beats the divil. You wouldn’t hear the likes of it in a play on your old Walkman radio.
Ebbsie: Listen to this “… convert an area of the ALSAA Sports Grounds to a full size softball field with dirt infield, similar to that used in Baseball and Softball in other countries. Other initial features of the facility will be permanent bases, a backstop and equipment shed.” “… absolute dream .. work started on the diamond… can't wait to start using it … legacy for those who participate in the sport in the future." “.. promote … softball in the region … top-class facility here in Dublin … growth in popularity of the sport."
Betty: Stop! They can go back where they belong. It’s a pipedream. Soon there’ll be nobody to play and no-one will remember it except us.
Burke and Ebbsie: Why don’t you join another team Betty?
Betty: No foreign cock with hair oil and a tiepin is goin to do me out of my rights. That’s the Flyers pitch. The field of nightmares we call it. Flyers pitch.
Ebbsie: Em says here, listen to this now “ALSAA has long hosted softball games and tournaments, indeed the Flyers Softball Club which recently disbanded played its home games on the field that is now being converted.”
Betty: Who disbanded? The Flyers? Did we?
Ebbsie [to Burke]: Come on lets go.
Fran: Time now ladies and gents. Time to go.