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By David Copper

GENRE: Not selected

Monologue for an actress in her 20s, 30s or 40s.


Okay, it’s a job. I get it. Beats the hell out of welfare or unemployment or waiting for that first social security check to finally pay off those student loans.

And the pay is pretty decent if you count tips -- which I do, if the IRS is listening -- so not much to gripe about really. But still...

It’s the smiling. And the kindness. And the pampering. I’m not good at it. Never was.

I mean, I’ll get your drinks, your meal, your appetizers. I’ll fetch you another fork. I’ll make sure they don’t burn the edges of your steak this time and I’ll look the other way when you steal a glance at my cleavage. I’ll even say the words -- those words -- if I have to. And I always do.

(big smile)

“I’m Wendy. What can I get you today?” LIke I’ve waited all my life for the chance to serve you. Like it’s all I am.

But here’s the thing about serving you: it’s something I do because I have to. Because I have rent and a phone bill and car insurance and I like to have a meal every day -- three would be nice, time permitting.

But I don’t like it. And I don’t like pretending that I like it. It feels like a costume I’m wearing. And I feel like I get lost behind the costume. It’s hard to breathe behind it. Hard to be somebody besides the girl that fetches your food.

I always want to tell people there’s a person behind that costume. A flawed and funny and complex and sometimes compassionate and sometimes greedy person. A person who cries at all the wrong times when she watches Breakfast with Tiffany and a person who eats Cheerios without the milk when nobody’s watching.

I used to think it’d be nice to just be that person. All day, every day. No costume, no phony smiles. You wake up, have your dry Cheerios and dance through your day. Then someday you marry a handsome prince and retire in a castle in the middle of an enchanted forrest.

But then you grow up and realize that everybody wears a costume.


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