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If Time Travel Were Invented

A drama in four acts.



Dramatis Personae:


HENRY FORD, inventor of the mass-produced automobile.


THE HAMPSTER, a man who is capable of traveling through time.


THOMAS EDISON, inventor of the light bulb and direct current, amongst other things.


THE ASSISTANT, assists THOMAS EDISON whenever possible.


FRANCIS UPTON, mathematical expert hired by THOMAS EDISON to explain complex things to EDISON such as Ohm’s law.


NICOLA TESLA, insane man who happened to invent alternating current.


THE INVENTOR OF CRACK, did exactly that.


THE BISHOP, clergyman who prefers the company of gentlemen over his obligations to the church.  Before Act IV he is promoted and becomes THE ARCH BISHOP.


ACT I – Inside a filthy and noisy factory owned by HENRY FORD.


HENRY FORD  is standing on the floor of his factory.


HENRY FORD:  I think we should produce another automobile!


THE HAMPSTER materializes next to him.


THE HAMPSTER:  I don’t think we should do that.  (Shakes his fist at Mr. Ford).


ACT II – A lab in Menlo Park, New Jersey.  Electrical components are everywhere.


THOMAS EDISON is making adjustments to a machine.  THE ASSISTANT is standing close at hand.  FRANCIS UPTON is writing maniacally on a blackboard.


THOMAS EDISON: Direct current is the best.  If only that fool Nicola Tesla would die.


THE ASSISTANT:  Very good, sir.


FRANCIS UPTON: (To audience)  I understand Ohm’s law, whereas Edison does not!


THOMAS EDISON:  Leave my sight instantly, Upton!




NICOLA TESLA:  Foul Edison!  One-day alternating current will be widely used!  What will you do without your precious Francis Upton?


THOMAS EDISON:  I will kill you.


THOMAS EDISON kills NICOLA TESLA with ease.  THE HAMPSTER enters through the door used by NICOLA TESLA.


THE HAMPSTER:  Well done, Edison!


ACT III – Tenements in New York City.  THE INVENTOR OF CRACK works fiendishly at his table.  THE HAMPSTER appears behind him and observes him, unseen.


THE INVENTOR OF CRACK:  Snorting coke was great until my nose healed shut.  Now, I will have something better!  (Brings crack pipe to his mouth).


THE HAMPSTER:  (Loudly).  I wouldn’t smoke that.


THE INVENTOR OF CRACK starts forward, jabbing the crack pipe through his previously clogged nose.


THE INVENTOR OF CRACK:  Excellent!  I can snort coke again!  Now I have no more need for this crack-rock.  (Hurls crack pipe to the ground).


THE HAMPSTER disappears.


ACT IV – It is the year 2001.


THE ARCH BISHOP:  It is fortunate I was recently promoted to Arch Bishop!


GENTLEMAN C:  Yes, it is.


GENTLEMAN A:  I was electrocuted by my direct-current light bulb again last night.  Look, I have no hair on my fore-arm!


GENTLEMAN B:  (Sad voice).  That happens all too frequently.


GENTLEMAN C:  In general, I feel safe walking the streets.


THE ARCH BISHOP:  I don’t wish to bicycle all the way back to the church.  It is a long ride.  Instead, I shall converse with you gentlemen further.


GENTLEMAN C:  We would be grateful for your on-going company.


GENTLEMAN A:   Does anyone remember why they ceased automobile production years ago?


THE HAMPSTER:  (Snickers quietly).








©2001, Scott Mintred


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