SIDE A – Eddie/Dad. 

EDDIE

(getting up)

You want another one?

 

DAD

I’m not even halfway done with this one. Why don’t you slow down?

 

EDDIE

Ale, man, ale’s the stuff to drink

For fellows whom it hurts to think:

Look into the pewter pot

To see the world as the world’s not.

 

 

DAD

That one’s not half bad. D’you make that up?

 

EDDIE

Ha. I wish. No, that’s A.E. Housman.

 

DAD

Who?

 

EDDIE

A.E. Housman.

 

DAD

Oh yeah! Good old A.E. I thought that might be him.

 

 

EDDIE

                                                (holding up his beer bottle)

To A. E.!

 

DAD

Yeah…you always liked the drink. A little too much sometimes maybe.

 

EDDIE

You think so, huh?

 

DAD

Mmmm, yeah, I do.

 

EDDIE

                                                (in a serious tone)

I had it checked out at the hospital, you know. There’s actually a chemical imbalance in my body.

 

DAD

What’re you talking about?

 

EDDIE

I wasn’t gonna bring it up…but they think it might be serious.

 

 

DAD

Well, tell me! What the hell is it?

 

 

EDDIE

They still need to run more tests, but… the doctor thinks there’s too much blood in my alcohol system.

 

                                                            (EDDIE laughs)

DAD

Asshole.

 

(pause)

 

All I’m trying to say is your brothers liked to go out and have a few beers with their friends, but you were different.

 

 

EDDIE

Different. That’s me.

 

DAD

What I mean is, no matter what was going on, it was always the right time for a drink for you.

 

EDDIE

You convinced me.

 

(EDDIE takes another huge swig of his beer)

 

DAD

Yeah, right. Exactly. When it was time to celebrate, it was time for a drink. When it was time to mourn, it was time for a drink. When you were nervous, a drink was the perfect thing to calm your nerves.

 

EDDIE

I have a philosophy. Always buy a bigger bottle than you think you’re going to need. It’s better to be safe than sober.

 

DAD

Yeah, you’ve got a million of ‘em I bet.

 

EDDIE

At least a million.

 

DAD

But back to my point. When you were cold at the Jets’ games, a shot was necessary to warm the cockles. And when you were hot at the Mets games, a cold beer hit the spot. You said you didn’t need it, of course. You could give it up whenever you wanted. But you never did.

 

EDDIE

And you say I never stick with anything.

 

DAD

Make jokes if you want to. I’m only making an observation.

 

EDDIE

Well, you’ve made it. And you made your point too. Now is it my turn to go through all the ways that you’re fucked up?

 

DAD

I’m not looking for an argument.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SIDE B - Eddie/Dad

DAD

What does Riley think of him? I mean, she’s four so how much can she know, right?

 

EDDIE

Well…she knows enough.

 

DAD

What’s that mean?

 

 

EDDIE

She told me today she was getting a new daddy. And then she said, ‘But don’t worry, you’ll always be my…’ And she hesitated, so I said, ‘your real daddy?’

And she said, ‘No, Doug will be my real daddy. You’ll always be my first daddy.’
 

I’ve been thinking that it might be…better…easier I mean for Riley, if I…get out of the way.

 

 

DAD

Whaddya mean, ‘get out of the way’?

EDDIE

I mean, let them both—Riley and Kelly—go to California and start a new life without me…in the way.

 

DAD

Now you’re talking stupid. You’re the girl’s father for Christ’s sake, how could you be in the way.

 

EDDIE

I don’t know, I’ve just been thinking that maybe Kelly and Riley could both use a fresh start…without stale me.

 

DAD

Well, what if the kid wants to talk to you about something? Whaddya gonna do, not take her calls?

 

EDDIE

After a while—and I honestly think it’ll be a short while—there won’t be any calls. She’ll forget about me. And that might be best for everyone involved.

 

DAD

Boy, you know, you’re a real piece of work. What kind of man turns his back on his own little girl like that?

 

EDDIE

The kind that thinks the little girl will be better off without him.

 

DAD

Wow! You are a mess. You were always moody, but this is something different altogether.