[ open on interior, barroom, as Red sits glumly at the bar ]
Bartender: Can I get you another one, Red?
Red: Yeah.. give me another one. Bacardi Rum. And, tell me again – I don’t think I hear you good? I can’t smoke here?
Bartender: You can’t smoke in any bar in New York City!
Red: None at all?
Bartender: Mayor’s new policy.
Red: Ohhh, this is horrible! This is horrible! It’s just plain horrible!
Bartender: Hey, I agree, Red – I think it sucks! It’s bad for business!
Red: It’s bad for business?! It’s bad for freedom! This is America! I pay my taxes! I walk my dog! I pick up my poop! I’m a grown man! Damn, I’m upset! I need a cigarette! [ lights up a cigarette ]
Bartender: Hey, hey, Red! [ takes the cigarette from Red’s mouth, and puts it out ] Sorry, Red! No!
Red: How you feel about it, Hedda.. how you feel about it?
Hedda: I’ve been smoking for twenty years..
Red: You never hurt nobody!
Hedda: You know what I say? Mayor Mike is not the boss of me. He’s nuts! [ lights a cigarette ]
Bartender: Hey! [ promptly pulls the cigarette away from Hedda, and puts it out ]
Hedda: Oh, come on, gorgeous.
Red: Heyyyy, I’m a grown man! I vote! I cross the street at the light! I say please and thank you! I’m not killin’ nobody! I’m killin’ myself! And it’s my right! I need a cigarette!
Bartender: No! [ a pause ] Listen, I think they’re just trying to cut down on second-hand smoke.
Hedda: You know what? That’s crazy!
Red: It is crazy!
Hedda: It’s cuckoo!
Hedda: Up yours, Mayor Mike! He don’t like second-hand smoke, ’cause he’s a second-hand Mayor! [ lights a cigarette ]
Bartender: Alright.. alright.. alright.. [ promptly pulls the cigarette away from Hedda, and puts it out ]
Hedda: Hey! Hey! You’re killing me, gorgeous!
Red: Let me tell you something – back in the day, we coulda smoked in a nursery school!
Hedda: That’s right!
Red: My momma would pack a pack of Lucky Strikes in my lunchbox!
Hedda: That right?
Red: We would smoke in the hospital!
Hedda: Amen.. amen to that..
Red: Dammit! We could smoke in swimming pools!
Hedda: Of course..
Red: Back in the days, smoking was good for you!
Hedda: Good for you..
Red: It makes you run faster!
Hedda: Run faster..
Red: It makes you smarter! It makes you a better lover!
Hedda: That’s right..
Red: I need a cigarette! [ puts a cigarette in his mouth ]
Hedda: [ takes the cigarette from Red’s mouth, puts it in her own mouth ] Let me tell you something – smokers do make your better lovers, or, as I like to say, puffers are good stuffers.
Red: [ laughs, choking ]
Bartender: [ takes the cigarette away from both of them ] Look, guys, if you wanna smoke, why don’t you just go outside?
Red: I’m not going outside! I’m not going out there like no dog, or a Vietnamese!
Hedda: No, I’m not gonna smoke outside, no way! You know why I don’t go outside?
Hedda: There’s too much air!
Hedda: [ choking, coughs up a whole cigarette ] Oh.. jackpot!
Red: Yeah, yeah!
[ Jerry enters ]
Jerry: Hey Red.. hey, Hedda..
Hedda: Hey..! [ kisses Jerry on the cheek ]
Bartender: [ as Jerry lights a cigarette ] Hey, sorry there, Jerry – no smoking.
Jerry: But it’s after midnight.
Jerry: These are lights.
Jerry: Uh.. I have a doctor’s note.
Bartender: Can’t do it.
Jerry: But I’m a regular!
Jerry: I’ll light the other end.
Jerry: I won’t exhale.
Bartender: Sorry, Jerry.
Jerry: [ holds up his hands awkwardly ] Dammit! If I’m not smoking, I don’t know what to do with my hands..
Red: Hmm.. let me tell you something – I want to revolt! I want to vote all over again! I’m gonna storm City Hall! I’m gonna e-mail the President! I walk my dog! I need a cigarette!
Jerry: [ still confused about the status of his hands ] Should I put ’em on my waist..? Or should I put ’em in my pockets, or something..? Does this look weird?
Red: Besides! There is no medical evidence.. that proves smoking is bad for you!
Hedda: There’s no medical evidence..
Red: The only people that say that smokin’ is bad for you are scientists!
Red: And doctors and tobacco companies! Who can you trust?!
Jerry: [ still very confused about his hands’ current function ] Sh-should I clap? [ claps ] I mean.. wh-wh-what if I put ’em on my leg..? Should I put ’em in my mouth, maybe, uh..
Hedda: Hey! I’ll tell you something.
Red: Tell ’em!
Hedda: A woman my age.. has earned the right.. to enjoy life’s little pleasures.
Jerry: How old are ya, Hedda?
Hedda: 25; 26.. in May, God willing.
Red: Let the lady smoke!
Bartender: Not in here!
Jerry: I figured out what to do with my hands – I’ll see you later. [ exits bar ]
Red: Well, you’d betty hurry, before they make that illegal!
Hedda: That’s right..
Bartender: Look, guys, I don’t want to get fired!
Red: Let me tell you something – how much does the government hate us? What is the number? What is it costing us!
Bartender: It’s a $200 fine.
Red: Hey! Here you go! [ throws some money on the counter ] Right there! That’s eight dollars and twenty-five cents!
Hedda: Eight dollars and twenty-five cents..
Red: Whattaya say? Whattaya say?
Bartender: No! I can’t do it!
Hedda: Hey.. I’ll let you look under my dress.
Bartender: [ thinks it over, then finally ] Okay. Just let me lock the door.
[ fade ]