‘SubUrbia’ (Jeff): “I didn’t want to admit it, but I was jealous of Pony”

'SubUrbia' by Eric Bogosian

From: Play

Type: Dramatic

Character: Jeff Gallagher, a young man filled with anxiety and thoughts about leaving his hometown.

Gender: Male

Age Range: 20's

Summary: Jeff, after a long rant, reveals he's moving to New York City.

More: Read the Play

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JEFF: No, see, what it was—I didn’t want to admit it, but I was jealous of Pony.

But I mean, when I was walking, I realized: he’s stuck in that limo all the time, he’s stuck with the autographs and the interviews. He has to do what his manager tells him to do. He isn‘t free. He’s just part of the machine. And freedom’s really all there is.

It used to scare me that I didn’t know what was coming in my life. I always thought, What if I make the wrong move? You know? But maybe there isn’t any right move. I was trying to figure it all out. But maybe you can’t.

(Bee—Bee doesn’t answer. Jeff stands up, slightly drunk.)

Look at us. We all dress the same, we all talk the same, we all watch the same TV. No one’s really different, even if they think they’re different. ”Oh boy, look at my tattoo!” You know?

(Bee-Bee is barely paying attention. Jeff is oblivious.)

And that makes me free, because I can do anything if I really don’t care what the result is. I don’t need money. I don’t even need a future. I could knock out all my teeth with a hammer, so what? I could poke my eyes out. I’d still be alive. Strip naked and fart in the wind. At least I would know I was doing something real for two or three seconds. It’s all about fear. And I’m not afraid anymore. F— it!

(Jeff begins to strip. Bee-Bee watches him flatly. Then, as if in a daze, she takes the bottle and drinks.)

Because anything is possible. It is night on the planet Earth, and I am alive, and some day I will be dead. Some day, I’ll be bones in a box. But right now, I’m not. And anything is possible. And that’s why I can go to New York with Sooze. Because each moment can be what it is. I’m on the train going there, I’m living there, I’m reading a newspaper, I’m walking down the street. There is no failure, there is no mistake. I just go and live there and what happens, happens.

(Jeff is down to his underwear.)

So at this moment, I am getting naked. And I am not afraid. F— FEAR! F— MONEY! I WILL GO TO NEW YORK AND I WILL LIVE IN A BOX. I WILL SING WITH THE BUMS. I WILL STARVE, BUT I WILL NOT DIE. I WILL LIVE. I WILL TALK TO GOD!

*From the Play

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