SANTA POLARIZED

 

CHARACTER    CAST (2010

 

Santa                    Darwin Hatch

Hers Elf               Colleen Engler

Hims Elf              Derek Davis

Mrs. Claus           Eileen Wylie

Millie                   Anne Kiner

Sue                       Barbara K. Schaefer

Emerald                Amy McGee

Bill                       Rich Weston

 

SCENE 1 North Pole, SantaÕs House

Hims Elf stomps in wearing wader boots. Santa, waiting, also wearing wader boots.

 

SANTA: DonÕt track mud in here. YouÕre ruining the carpet.

 

HIMS ELF: You donÕt have a carpet.

 

SANTA: Well, if I did, youÕd be ruining it.

 

HIMS ELF: EverythingÕs a mess. ItÕs all melting. ItÕs global warm –

 

SANTA: Stop that! ThereÕs no such thing as global warming. ItÕs all a myth, an absurd pseudo-scientific–

 

HIMS ELF: Look, itÕs the middle of December at the North Pole and itÕs 73 degrees and that guy on Cape Barrow is selling ice cubes to polar bears.

 

SANTA: Humph!

 

Hers Elf runs in

 

HERS ELF: RudolfÕs nose shorted out. ItÕs the humidity.

 

SANTA: ItÕll be fine once it snows. You elves just need to get back to work. ThereÕs only two weeks left and weÕre behind schedule.

 

HIMS ELF: Work? How are we going to work with the entire workshop under four feet of water?

 

SANTA: HavenÕt you heard of É mops?

 

HIMS ELF: Mops! We need a bilge pump!

 

Enter Mrs. Claus

 

MRS. CLAUS: Where did my fabric shed go? It was right out on the ice floe.

 

HERS ELF: Sorry. It sank.

 

MRS. CLAUS: ThatÕs my whole stash! Thirteen hundred years of fabric – I had unicorn tapestries, virgins from the Silk Road, Arnold Schwarzenegger smiling over a recipient maiden like a ...  Never mind. This is completely unacceptable.

 

SANTA: I wish everyone wouldnÕt exaggerate. ItÕs only been twelve hundred and eighty years.

 

MRS. CLAUS: Forget the details. YouÕre in denial, you have your head in the flood. Now you listen to me, Kris Kringle

 

HIMS ELF [whisper]: Oh man, when she starts with that ÒKrisÓ stuff, you better hold your ears.

 

MRS. CLAUS: I heard that!

 

SANTA [abashed]: But really, dear, what can I do?  

 

HERS ELF: Ahem! WeÕve been looking at Google Maps. We think may be there is a way out.

 

HIMS ELF: See, thereÕs a place thatÕs supposed to be immune to global warming. They say itÕs the coldest place on earth.

 

SANTA: What? Where?

 

HIMS ELF: In Pennsylvania. ItÕs called Sullivan County.

 

SANTA: Never heard of it.

 

HERS ELF: Few have. But if we pack everything up tonight we could fly the sleigh down by tomorrow and still get done in time for Christmas.

 

MRS. CLAUS: What about my fabric stash?

 

HERS ELF: Hims Elf trained as a Navy seal.

 

HIMS ELF: I worked out a pretty good dredge system when that walrus capsized the toy warehouse.

 

SANTA: All right! LetÕs get crackinÕ. Where did I put my boots?

 

MRS. CLAUS [pointing to his feet]: Really, dear.

 

SANTA: Humpf!

 

the elves start to get stuff together

 

HERS ELF: Yuck! What a mess! Look – Soggedy Ann.

 

HIMS ELF: I hope we can get the mildew off the Tinkertoys.

 

HERS ELF: Hey, look – a fern growing out of Elmo.

 

HIMS ELF: He deserves it.

 

SANTA: DonÕt stand around waving wet toys. We have to get everything into the sleigh.

 

MRS. CLAUS: You know, IÕm excited. A new beginning. Things get boring after 1300 years.

 

SANTA: I told you, itÕs only ....

 

HIMS ELF: I hope they have decent beer.

 

 

SCENE 2 Lopez pavilion

the Elves and the Clauses shiver on the hillside.

 

HERSELF: Lo-o-o-o-pez?

 

HIMS ELF: This is supposed to be the coldest sp-sp-spot in Sullivan County.  The coldest place in the known universe.

 

HERS ELF: I can be-believe it.

 

MRS. CLAUS trying to bundle her coat tighter

ItÕs inhuman!

 

HERS ELF: ItÕs un-elven!

 

HIMS ELF [pointing]: ItÕs so cold the dogs are sticking to the sidewalk!

 

SANTA: ItÕs too c-c-cold for any living thing. IsnÕt there someplace else?

 

HIMS ELF [looking at his map]: Well, thereÕs this other little town, Eagles Mere, ItÕs got a lake that freezes 18 inches thick.

 

MRS. CLAUS: ThatÕs enough. ThatÕs more than enough. The faster we get there the better.

 

SANTA: Global warming my –

 

MRS. CLAUS: Kris Kringle!

 

 

SCENE 3 Eagles Mere Lake

SANTA: Eagles Mere Lake, frozen solid. Excellent. I hope everyone will stop complaining.

 

HERS ELF: ItÕs perfect. Just the way things used to be at the North Pole.

 

HIMS ELF : WeÕre got the workshop set up, now I have to find a place to plug in the computers.

 

MRS. CLAUS: Just use WiFi. But I do need electricity for my iron. YouÕd think these people would have more modern amenities.

 

HIMS ELF: Humph. They only pretend theyÕre rustic. You know – a wood stove next to the plasma TV?

 

Millie and Sue enter

 

MILLIE: Look! ItÕs Santa! Is it true? Have you really moved your workshop to Eagles Mere?

 

SANTA: Ho ho ho, indeed we have. Have you been a good girl?

 

MILLIE: Yes, Santa. Um, well I think so.

 

SUE [aside]: Depends on your definition of good.

 

MILLIE: DonÕt listen to her. I go to church, I give canned goods to the Food Pantry, I pray every night, and I never use the big, big D.

 

HIMS ELF: What, never?

 

MILLIE: No, never.

 

SUE: What, never?

 

MILLIE: Well, hardly ever.

 

HIMS ELF: Hardly ever swears the big, big D.

 

SANTA : That sounds pretty good. So whatÕs your Christmas wish?

 

MILLIE: I canÕt remember all of it. Hold on, IÕve got a list at home. Be right back. [she exits.]

 

SANTA [turning to SUE]: And what would you like for Christmas?

 

SUE: A gold-plated Cadillac.

 

SANTA: Has that gold shipment come in from China?

 

HERS ELF: Yep, but it looks like bronze covered with glitter and urethane.

 

MRS. CLAUS: I was supposed to get 500 yards of brocade and it turned out to be highlight patterns stamped into tree bark.

 

SANTA: We can make it work. We have that can-do spirit. Start up the shop! Get the stables ready for the Reindeer!

 

MILLIE [returns]: HereÕs my list. Turns out, I want ... everything!

 

HERS ELF: UhhhÉ.I think...

 

HIMSELF : You gotta. .. accentuate the positive...

 

HERS ELF: Eliminate the negative...

 

HIMS ELF: Latch onto the affirmative...

 

EVERYONE: And donÕt mess with Mr. In-Between!

 

 

SCENE 4 The Barn Tavern

Santa and Elves walk in. Sue and Bill are drinking at the bar.

 

SUE: What are they doinÕ here? Darned flatlanders.

 

BILL: They ainÕt no flatlanders. TheyÕre from the North darned Pole.

 

SUE: Yeah? WhatÕs anyway flatterÕn the North Pole?

 

BILL: HadnÕt thought oÕ that.

 

Hims Elf walks in. He catches SueÕs attention.

 

HIMS ELF: Hey, splendiferous babe.

 

SUE: WhatÕs up, magnificent barbasol?

 

Hims Elf drops down beside her and leans his head on her shoulder.

 

HIMS ELF: Built low to the ground I may be, but it increases agility, dexterity and longevity.

 

BILL: Looks like youÕve been getting around for awhile.

 

HIMS ELF [laughs]: Could be. Guess – how long have I been with the Big Guy?

 

SUE: I dunno. 30, 40 years?

 

HIMS ELF [drawing himself up]: 437 years next Tuesday.

 

SUE: But youÕre...

 

HIMS ELF: You just bet I am.

 

Hims Elf plops himself down at the bar.

 

HIMS ELF: What have you got that ainÕt Bud Light?

 

 

SCENE 5 Laporte Court House

The Sullivan County Labor Board. Santa stands at the door with Mrs. Claus.

 

SANTA: IÕve been asked to come –

 

BILL : Yes, please. Sit down.

 

SANTA [showing paper]: Why have I received this citation? I donÕt understand.

 

EMERALD: You brought your elves with you when you came to Eagles Mere, correct?

 

SANTA: Of course. They are the linchpins of our operation.

 

BILL: And do you deny that you have hired no one from the county to join your workshop?

 

SANTA [nervous]: Well, we only had limited time, we needed to move quickly. The elves are all excellent workers – they have hundreds of years experience.

 

EMERALD: We have a perennially high unemployment rate. YouÕre living off the area and giving nothing back.

 

MRS. CLAUS: We eat in your restaurants. I especially like the Crestmont, donÕt you? And that place that looks like a streetcar.

 

Emerald slaps a sheet of paper down in front of Santa.

 

SANTA: WhatÕs this?

 

EMERALD: A noise abatement order.

 

BILL: Your elves never stop singing.

 

EMERALD: Off key.

 

BILL: And why are you using chainsaws to make Christmas gifts?

 

SANTA: YouÕre seen the fall festival. ItÕs quicker that way. Bears. Big bears.

 

BILL: The whole lake is covered with sawdust. The toboggans canÕt go five feet without piling up.

 

SANTA: It makes excellent bedding for the reindeer. WeÕll clean it all up. Right after Christmas.

 

EMERALD: Speaking of which, your reindeer ate my holly!

 

SANTA: IÕm surprised. They donÕt usually like prickly things.

 

MRS. CLAUS: I totally understand your position. You both seem pretty tense. In the workshop, we have a remedy – back rubs! With your permission ....

 

EMERALD: I guessÉÉ

 

Mrs. Claus works on Bill while Santa works on Emerald. Lots of ooohs and aaahhhs. Santa gets up to leave

 

BILL: So É what are you going to do about this?

 

SANTA: CanÕt we just get on with our work? ÕTis the season to be jolly. And it will all be over in a couple of weeks.

 

EMERALD: All right, weÕll talk about this after Christmas, but we need every bit of your mess cleaned up by January First or youÕll be fined $100 a day.

 

SANTA [to Mrs. Claus as he leaves]: That much? Why failed bankers donÕt ....It was easier dealing with the Grinch.

 

MRS. CLAUS: Now, dearÉÉ

 

 

SCENE 6 Eagles Mere Lake

 

HERS ELF: Will we ever get caught up?

 

HIMS ELF: Cool it. ItÕs like this every year. It isnÕt easy to get gifts together for 2 billion kids.

 

HERS ELF: Do you think theyÕll be able to spot these knockoff iPods?

 

HIMS ELF: Just the ones that only play Chinese music.

 

HERS ELF: I kinda like that one song, ÒChairman Mao was a rowdy-dow-dow

 

enter Santa and Mrs. Claus

 

MRS. CLAUS: You know, Nick, IÕm coming to like this place. Do you think we could make this our permanent site?

 

SANTA: I donÕt know. They seem awfully picky here, such a lot of complaints. No one ever bothered us at the North Pole about our environmental impact.

 

MRS. CLAUS: TheyÕre concerned citizens. ThatÕs a good thing.

 

SANTA: I suppose, but I get the feeling weÕre just not wanted.

 

HIMS ELF: Hey, whatÕs that glow over there?

 

HERS ELF: Looks like ... chestnuts roasting on an open fire.

 

MRS. CLAUS : While Jack FrostÕs nipping at my nose.

 

SANTA: Yuletide carols being sung by a choir,

 

HIMS ELF: And folks dressed up like Eskimos ....

 

ALL BUT SANTA:

O-o-o-h ... Nat King Cole was a merry soul singer,

And a merry soul singer was he.

He called for his bell and he called for his ringer

And he called for his chestnuts three.

 

SANTA: Stop this nonsense and get back to work.

 

 

SCENE 7 Eagles Mere Lake

the elves sweep up the last bits of trash as the various actors enter by ones and twos

 

EMERALD: Goodness, they really did get it all cleaned up – every last scrap.

 

BILL: And you have to admit, this was the liveliest Christmas weÕve ever had in Eagles Mere.

 

SUE: I just love my bronze-plated Cadillac with the glitter.

 

MILLIE: And my Captain Wombat and the Marsupials action figures. They sing ÒWaltzing Matilda.Ó

 

HERS ELF [aside]: With a Chinese accent.

 

enter Santa and Mrs. Claus

 

MRS. CLAUS: IÕve never been so relieved to have the season over. Such a lot of last-second work.

 

SANTA: But worth every minute of it. IÕm certainly pleased with the results.

 

BILL [looking abashed]: IÕd like to apologize for creating so many difficulties for you.

 

EMERALD: Yes, Santa, youÕve been a wonderful addition to the community.

 

SANTA: WeÕve enjoyed the change.

 

HIMS ELF: And the beerÕs great.

 

SUE: So ... youÕre really 500 years old?

 

HIMS ELF: Half a millenium of fun and frolic.

 

SUE: I guess, youÕve, uh, learned a lot in that time?

 

HIMS ELF: You bet your pretty little head.

 

SUE [taking his arm]: Anything youÕd care to teach me?

 

HIMS ELF: Well, the Mongolians have this thing they call ....

 

Sue and Hims Elf wander offstage

 

BILL: I hope this works out better than that time she went off with the traveling salesman.

 

SANTA: I was wondering – what are the chances we could make this our permanent home?

 

Emerald and Bill eye each other warily

 

BILL: Well, you see, it gets quite warm in the summer....

 

EMERALD [gesturing at the ground]: And the reindeer....

 

MRS. CLAUS: Why donÕt we discuss this later?

 

BILL: Yeah, itÕs the fun season. And this has been a great one.

 

MILLIE: LetÕs sing something.

 

the sound of sleigh bells in the background

 

BILL: You know, thereÕs only one song to sing at a time like this.

 

Bill leads off and they all join in on ÒJingle BellsÓ

 

BILL: CÕmon, everybody, join in!

 

audience joins in

 

SANTA: Merry Christmas to all....

 

Clancy Bros. version, and then

 

MRS. CLAUS: ...and a Happy New Year...every year.

 

THE END