Only A Sister

If you have a sister (or similar close-in-age sibling with whom you spent your formative years in the trenches), you will recognize this scenario.



It is late Saturday night. ALETHEA has just arrived in Charleston after a not-so-grueling-but-still-eight-hour drive down the Eastern Seaboard. SOTERIA and CHARLES have offered her a seat and a drink. ALETHEA accepts both.

CHARLES: So what’s the plan for tomorrow?

ALETHEA: (still road-weary) Plans. Yes, plans are good.

SOTERIA: (sings) “Because planning ahead’s the one and only way.” (Looks at ALETHEA) I say that all the time. What the heck is that from?

ALETHEA: (without missing a beat) The Lolliwinks.

CHARLES: The What?

ALETHEA: Lolliwinks. (to SOTERIA) You remember, that LP we had. They were like a cross between Leprechauns and Smurfs. My favorite song was “When I Paint the World.” Or “Misty Morning.” (starts singing) “Misty morning, misty morning, we will sing the blues away…”

SOTERIA: Oh my god. You’re totally right. I can’t believe you remember that. How did the rest of the planning song go?

CHARLES: (who has been madly Googling) You can buy the Lolliwinks LP for a hundred bucks.

ALETHEA: Ooch. So much for obscure childhood memories. Too bad — I’d like to hear some of those songs again.

SOTERIA: “Planning ahead is…” Oh nuts, I can’t remember it. How does it go?

CHARLES, who has Mad Google Foo, starts playing “Planning Ahead.” He has found the entire album online at this website to download for free. SOTERIA and ALETHEA start dancing around and half-singing, filling in the blanks in their memories and renewing those neural pathways all cobwebby with decades-old dust.

CHARLES: I always wanted to live in a musical.