Originally produced as part of the University of Missouri-Kansas City’s “Festival of N.O.W.” on February 10, 2006.
|DJ||Patrick Du Laney|
Director: Meredith McDonough
Neely: 19, works at Amoco, sarcastic, lost
Alex: 19, small time drug dealer, Neely’s best friend
Sylvia: 19, overly friendly, small town girl, Alex’s new interest
DJ: 29, copy from Chicago, overweight
Nelson: 15-17, Neely’s brother, crystal meth addict, sweet but out of control
Sophia: Alex’s baby, should be a doll in a car seat
Jessica: Alex’s ex-girlfriend, voiceover
Publication: Mostyn-Brown, Megan. The Secret Lives of Losers. New York: Samuel French, 2007. Drama Library Stacks PS3613. O788 S4 2007.
Setting: Small town Illinois, the present
And Jessica’s cousin, the lesbo, she fucked Alex Scarandado, the guy with the cleft chin who was on the wrestling team, in the parking lot at 31 Flavors on Saturday and now she’s questioning her sexuality once again.
Plot: Neely is a 19-year-old high school graduate who works at an Amoco gas station and takes care of her younger brother Nelson–a crystal meth addict who loves “Wheel of Fortune”–now that their mother has left to find herself in exotic lands. Neely’s best friend is Alex, a small town drug addict taking care of a baby he does not want while waiting for the baby’s mama to return from college; he can’t admit to himself that she has abandoned her baby and him. Into Neely’s dead-end world comes DJ, a cop from Chicago, escaping heartbreak in his past, to challenge her to do something about her future. The characters in the play are, as the title suggests, losers, people left behind while everyone else goes to college or joins the military or does something to get out of their particular nowheresville. If you’re looking for an uplifting, satisfying ending, this play doesn’t provide it. Sometimes people are so damaged they can only make incremental changes, and those changes aren’t necessarily positive.
Representative Monologues: Monologues contain the first few lines and the last few lines; please consult the published text for the monologue in its entirety.
p.70-71: Neely confesses to DJ why she began stealing things. You can cut DJ’s lines to create the monologue. Starts with
Okay so ummm… Right after my mom left Mrs. Finklestein baked us a ziti… She’s one of the neighborhood ladies without husbands or children who does that, bakes for us because we have a bad situation and I thank her fer the ziti and she smiles at me like I know she’s gonna go to her Stitch n’ Bitch meeting the next day and talk about how sad we are and she turns her back and I took it.
and ends with
No, You know, I always felt like- Naw I- I always hoped that when I died they’d open my closet and everyone’d find all their lost shit and this flood of great memories will wash over them as they remember how special these things were to them and in the midst of it they’d umm… think of me and what they have and not what I don’t have.
p.12-15: Neely confronts Nelson about taking off from school and gets him to promise not to cut back on the crystal meth and stay the entire day in school. He’s watching “Wheel of Fortune”. Starts with
(To the television.) Oh shit, oh shit, oh shit you are such a fuckin’ dumbass Dave from Utah you shoulda guessed fuckin’ “P”…
and ends with
Yeah, yeah promise with a big “P”. No trouble. Later. Later skater.
p.31-33: DJ and Neely go to the park after having dinner on their first date. DJ gives her a crayfish in a terrarium as a gift because he says it reminded him of her. Starts with
Thanks fer the meal.
and ends with
p.66-68: Neely has lost her job at the gas station for stealing. Nelson has gotten the closet open where she hid all the things she’s stolen from neighbors. She goes up on Alex’s roof to think. She and Alex talk and she confesses that she had always thought they’d end up together. Alex shuts her down using his baby and Jessica, the baby’s mama, as an excuse and Neely strikes back. At the end of the scene Alex hears Jessica on the answering machine and goes into the house. Neely takes Sophie and leaves. Starts with
Do you even love Sophie?
and ends with
She apologized Neely. I told you. She said she’s comin’ tomorrow if she doesn’t have to work on a project- but I feel like tomorrow’s gonna be the day- (Realizes he is alone.) Neely!