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The Proposal

by Ron Kurtus (4 Jun 1971)

(John and Marsha just sat down on the couch. Something is bothering John, as he is noticeably nervous.)

MARSHA: Whew, Well, we made it.

JOHN: Yes. How did you like the dinner, dear?

MARSHA: When that car started coming towards us, I thought that we were goners.

JOHN: Yes, that was a close one. Did you have a good time tonight?

MARSHA: ...but you just spun the steering wheel and slammed on the brakes. I thought for sure that we were going to smash into that car.

JOHN: (proudly) Well, I was in complete control all the time.

MARSHA: John, don't ever do that again -- while I'm driving.

JOHN: But I thought there was going to be a serious accident. We could have been injured.

MARSHA: In the restaurant parking lot?

JOHN: Well...I suppose you're right, dear. But, anyway... did you have a good time tonight?

MARSHA: (taking his hand) I always have a good time with you, sweetheart.

JOHN: (shifting a little closer to her) And you enjoyed your food?

MARSHA: It's good to get away from the kitchen once in a while.

JOHN: Only the best for my little girl.

MARSHA: Yes, I don't get a chance to go to McDonald's very often.

JOHN: (hurt) You didn't enjoy the meal!

MARSHA: Oh no, I didn't mean that. I just love fishburgers.

JOHN: And they're goodfor you too. Made of only the finest, grade-A fish, soaked in polyunsaturated oil, for your dining pleasure. And to add to the flavor, McDonald's fine chefs supply a generous helping of ketchup, mustard, pickles, horseradish, and chili peppers between the buns.

MARSHA: On fish?!

JOHN: Besides the magnificent flavor of the fishburger, the enumerable vitamins and minerals you get from the additives they put in, the fishburger is good for your intellect. You know that fish is brain food, don't you?

MARSHA: I noticed that you always eat hamburgers.

JOHN: (not sure) Yeah... well, I never really cared for fish.

(They both look at each other in silence for a few seconds)

JOHN: Well, I'm glad you had a good time tonight, because...

MARSHA: Yes?

JOHN: Well, ah... Gee, you look beautiful tonight.

MARSHA: (pleased) Why, thank you.

(John puts his arm around Marsha. But Marsha is thinking.)

MARSHA: (pulling away) Why only tonight?

JOHN: No, I didn’t mean it that way. Sometimes you look better than others, and tonight you look good.

MARSHA: And last night, I didn’t look so hot?

JOHN: No, no... you looked fine last night.

MARSHA: (pouting) but not beautiful.

JOHN: (getting mad) Damn it! you looked fantastic last night! You look wonderful all the time. You're always beautiful. OK, does that make you happy?

MARSHA: Don't you swear at me.

JOHN: (puts palm on forehead) Oy yoi yoi!

MARSHA: I always heard that you had a dirty mouth.

JOHN: OK, I'm sorry. I just got a little mad. And I think you're a beautiful girl all the time.

MARSHA: (thinking) Well, sometimes - like after staying up too late I get dark rings under my eyes in the morning.

JOHN: (with patience) I love dark rings.

MARSHA: ...and often I can't do a thing with my hair. I get the "frizzies".

JOHN: I love the frizzies. (shifting closer.)

MARTHA: I guess that there are times when I don't look beautiful.

JOHN: And I love you.

(they embrace and kiss)

MARSHA: Oh, John.

JOHN: Oh, Marsha.

MARSHA: Oh, John!

JOHN: Oh, Marsha.

MARSHA: John! (determined to get his attention)

JOHN: Marsha!

MARSHA: John... your breath smells awful.

JOHN: (breaking the embrace) That horseradish ain't the best smelling stuff either... but I love it, I love it!

MARSHA: Oh, you're sweet, John.

(they both sit in silence for a few seconds. John is looking a little antsy.)

JOHN: Marsha...ah...

MARSHA: Yes, John.

JOHN: Well, you know we've been going together for some time, and...

MARSHA: How long has it been?

JOHN: It must be about five years now.

MARSHA: That long! How time flies.

JOHN: ...and I was thinking that... maybe we should  five years must mean something and...

MARSHA: Imagine, you and I have gone together for five whole years. Yes, you and I.

MARSHA: I and you.

JOHN: Five years.

MARSHA: Were you trying to tell me something, John?

JOHN: Oh! Yes! Well, Martha...after you go together with a person for a long time, you start to think of the future...

MARSHA: The future?

JOHN: Yes, you're not getting any younger...and me neither! So, I thought that maybe you and I should... you know, we could...

MARSHA: John, you are trying to tell me that we've had five happy years together, dating two or three times a week, and that we could have even happier times if we were with each other every day?

JOHN: Oh, yes, yes. That's just what I wanted to say.

MARSHA: And that we've always been a compatible couple and we could spend the rest of our lives in the sunshine of life - traveling together through the flowers of connubial bliss?

JOHN: (agitated) Oh, yes, yes, yes: You took the words right out of my mouth!

MARSHA: Are you trying to tell me that you want to marry me?

JOHN: That's what I was trying to say, darling.

MARSHA: Well, why didn’t you just come out and ask me? You don't have to be shy with me. We've gone together for five years.

JOHN: (gets down on one knee) Oh, darling, will you marry me?

MARSHA: No! (emphatically)

END