Play: Lulu gets the last word!

LULU PLAY  Lulu Gets the Last Word!

May 19th 2014

Chamber History week.

Characters:

Lulu LeDeux- a smart and savvy restaurant owner with a shady history, but a good attitude

Mary McGill- Mayor’s wife and a friend to the ladies in town

Cecelia Sutton- the Reverend’s wife and secretary to the WCOLP

Firefighter Dan- a regular patron at Lulu’s

Phoebe Newberry- local School Teacher

Sam Lechner- the local General Store owner

Mrs. Lechner

Johnny Justice- local Sheriff and Lulu’s beau

Publisher Hurd- Intermountain Paper

Town’s folks

WCTU Ladies- one looks like she is covering up her face…Who can it be?

 

                                                Scene 1

Setting: Early in the morning after the breakfast rush, Cecelia Sutton comes into Lulu’s restaurant to ask about planning a party for her Ya Ya Sisters.

Lulu: Good Morning Cecelia! Have a cuppa’ tea?

Cecelia: Coffee, I think and pie. (A couple enters and the two watch while they settle near the front.) Wait, what’s the lunch special?

Lulu: It is beef tail and root vegetable soup with biscuits. I bought one of the banker’s new beef steers and we are working through the awful and extra parts. Liver tonight and beef tongue sandwiches tomorrow. Cook will also do a pot of Posole for lunch tomorrow. Everyone seems to love it. (She moves over to the new folks and begins to talk to them)

Lulu: How are you folks doing? I have not seen you in here since January.

Mrs. Lechner: We have been very busy at the store. First there was inventory and then all the new products after Sam came back from the Portland Expo. Did you hear that we are marking down the canned goods as much as 2-1/2 cents a can? Pretty impressive. (Door opens and in comes the Mayor’s wife, Mary Magill)

Mary: Hello Lulu! What did I interrupt? (Mary takes a chair and settles in for the latest gossip)

Sam Lechner: We have all of our new dry goods arriving in the next few days. Wait until you see the new spring fabrics! Lulu? How about a bowl of the soup and I would rather have bread and butter.

Lulu: Sure! Glass of Milk today?

Mrs. L: One for each of us and I want a meatloaf sandwich.

Lulu: Coming right up.

(Lulu scoots to the counter and hangs the order)

Fireman Dan: Hey Lulu, What’s cooking? (He is followed in by a few other fellows that sit right down and put their hats under their chairs. They pick up the lunch menu cards and begin reading.) Some of the Tail soup for me and the boys. They all want coffee and bring out some cream, too, Lulu!

Lulu: Absolutely, Dan! I will get your soup and tell you about the cakes and pies when I get back. Are you fellows having a drill or something?

Dan: We are going to have a meeting with Sheriff Justice and we need to talk about the fact that we never have enough water to put out fires around here. He has an idea!

Lulu: (turning away from them to go to the kitchen- talks while she moves through the room) Anything that can keep us from losing another building would be great! Okay Mary what can I get you?

Mary: Tea and a sweet roll would be good!

Lulu: Peppermint or Orange Pekoe?

Mary: Peppermint, I guess! Say, have the girls been in to talk to you about catering their WCOLP party?

Lulu: Speak of the devil, here comes your pal Cecelia! She asked me about it yesterday. (Cecelia enters and joins Mary in a flurry of removing her coat and gloves) How are you today?

Cecelia: I am famished. I need some hearty fare if I am going to make it through this planning session today. The Events Chairman, Inez, is going to drive me crazy!

Lulu: When did she return to the events committee? I thought we learned our lesson a couple of years ago?

Mary: I know, Lulu! We tried to keep her from getting back on board, but to no avail!

(Leaning in close to the women)

Lulu: Are you serious about having wine with your dinner? Old Henry has lots of his special sacramental wine supply, but we could get in trouble if it gets out to the public.

Cecelia: As long as Inez doesn’t know anything, I think we are safe. Friday after you close the café and I will be here to decorate.

(Door opens and the Sheriff enters and crosses to give Lulu a hug before he hangs his hat and sits down)

Sheriff Justice: How’s the soup? I could eat a gallon!

Lulu: It is terrific and I will get you a large bowl and a pile of those fresh biscuits that just got pulled out of the oven.

Sheriff: You take such good care of me, Darlin’.

(One of the servers fills coffee and brings out orders while Lulu oversees and talks with everyone. Door opens and it is Mr. Hurd from the Intermountain with the latest paper.)

Hurd: Here is the latest paper, everyone! (He puts them on the counter and returns to the Lechner table.) I got your sale in this one, Lechner. What you eatin’? Looks good. Lulu, get me a meatloaf sandwich, too, will ya’?

Lulu: (Standing at the counter, she sees an article that makes her nervous and crosses to the ladies table to show them the front page) Take a look at this! The Women’s Club Party is all over the front page. It says that it will be a Wing-Ding of a party for the ladies of the women’s club and he has published the details and the menu. Too many people will be watching this event. We will need to change our plans a bit. (The sheriff comes over)

Sheriff: I saw Inez Garrett at the Intermountain Office. She must have put the ad in the paper.

Lulu: That is too bad! The gals were pretty sweet on having a Special Recipe Tea Party and now it looks like they will have to do something different.

Sheriff: Well, you know what’s best and I know that when it comes to Inez, you like to get the last word…

Lulu: Will you be back from Bend before dinner today? I need you to do something for me… (She leans into the Sheriff and whispers and the Sheriff shakes his head yes)

Lulu: Hey everyone, make sure you give me a personal RSVP about Friday night by Thursday afternoon, ok?

All: Sure thing, Lulu- or other ad lib comments…

 

 

                                                Scene 2

Setting: It is Friday afternoon and the regulars are in the restaurant. So are the wcolp ladies, the volunteer firemen and the Sheriff. It seems that everyone has gathered to see what is going to unfold when a surprise visit from the WCTU Women from Bend arrive to check out rumors about Lulu’s Tea time.

(Door Opens and in walk a group of ladies dressed to the max and they take an open table near the front)

Lulu: Good afternoon ladies! (She hands them menus cards) I will be right back to get your orders.

Woman 1: Do you have any of that famous tea we have heard about?

Lulu: Absolutely! (Looks them over and notices the shy one who keeps her head low) Are you all right, Miss?

Woman 2: (Barely audible) I have had the chilblains and this is my first day out.

Lulu: (She nods to the lady) So all of you are ready for some special tea? I have just the right tea for you, Miss and some of the China tea with almond cookies for the rest of you ladies.

Women: (together) Perfect!

(Lulu and a server come over to set the ladies up with everything they will need. In the meantime, the strangers are really giving Lulu’s Café the once over! They seem to be putting their heads together to talk privately. After Lulu delivers the teapots, she speaks 🙂

Lulu: Will there be anything else? (They ad lib no thanks) No? I will be back to check on you later!

(The WCOLP ladies signal Lulu to their table. She stands near to them and keeps an eye on the women from Bend)

Woman 1: This tea tastes perfectly fine!

Woman 2: Whatever this is it seems like it is really soothing to my throat.

Woman 3: Good for you. Your voice even seems better after having a little of that pot. Can I try it, too?

Woman 2: Of course.

Woman 4: I cannot taste a single strange note in this tea. Are you sure that you are right about there being something added that should not be used?

Woman 2: I tell you, in the afternoon, Lulu serves tea that is full of her special recipe and I have seen what happens to the people that drink it. She is breaking the law. Seriously!

Woman 1: well, as far as I can tell, this is some of the finest China tea I have ever had. And, have you tasted these fine little almond cookies? They are wonderful.

Woman 2: Just wait. The tea will catch up to you soon, sure enough! Then you can close her down for good!

(Lulu crosses to check on the ladies while a server takes care of filling the other customer’s cups and bussing dishes from the tables)

Lulu: Can I bring you more hot tea?

Woman: I would like another pot of that tea you brought her. (Pointing to woman 2)

Lulu: (Lifting the lid on the big pot) Looks like you all could use a refill. (Calling to her server) Honey, can you bring another pot of each to these ladies- and more cookies, too?

Woman 3: Wonderful. I feel so relaxed! (All of the others at the table turn to look at their friend carefully)

Woman 4: Do you sell these cookies to take out? I would love a dozen for my bridge club tomorrow.

Lulu: We sell everything we make. Perhaps the buttery sugar cookies coming out of the oven would do nicely, as well.

Woman 3: I’d love some of those. Do you sell the loose China tea?

Lulu: By the ounce!

Woman 3: I will take ¼ pound, please and two dozen of those almond cookies and a dozen sugar cookies, too!

Lulu: You ladies are making my day. (She sees a paper poking out of the top of one of the purses hanging on the back of the chair. The article about the party is circled) I notice that you read our local paper?

Woman 1: Why yes we do. We were over at the General Store and saw that you are having a party for the Ladies Club tonight. Can anyone come?

Lulu: I wish I could extend an invitation, but the Ladies have postponed their party until another time. Too many people have taken ill recently and their group could not make it.

Woman 2: (Excitedly) That is not true! That party has not been changed.

Lulu: How would you know?

Woman 2: Well I… (Stammering) heard that the party was happening here tonight.

Woman 1: Are you sure, Inez?

Lulu: Is that you, Inez?

(Woman 2 removes her head gear and veil)

Inez Garrett: Yes.

(The WCOLP ladies gather around the table with Lulu)

Lulu: What are you up to now, Inez? This is your club’s party. Who are these ladies?

Inez: I heard that you were using illegal alcohol here at the restaurant and these WCTU Ladies are here to shut you down, once and for all!

Lulu: That is certainly just like you, Inez. Never going to the source, only following the rumor mill and causing problems.

Woman 1: Hello, Lulu. I am Inez’ Aunt Mabel from Bend. I am pleased to meet you.

Inez: Auntie!

Woman 1: Quiet, Inez. I can see that you have drawn me into another one of your schemes. When will you stop trying to control everything? As for you, Miss Lulu. We have all wanted to find out what it is about your café that is such a draw for people that come through La Pine.

Woman 3: We all know why, now. The tea is superb, the atmosphere is comfy and cozy and the cookies are amazing.

Woman 4: Hear hear!

Sheriff: (Joining the table) I need to talk to Miss Lulu for a moment before I leave. Why don’t you all introduce yourselves so the ladies from Bend get to know you hard working WCOLP women?

Lulu: Thanks for the tip, Johnny!

Sheriff: It is good to be Sheriff! I always know about all of the WCTU comings and goings, because of that new secretary we hired! She is a real treasure- except for the fact that you cannot tell her anything or talk in front of her at the office without it getting out to the towns folk!

Lulu: Lucky for me Ethel resigned and you found Betty! So what happened exactly?

Sheriff: Inez called on the telephone to talk to her Aunt and they made plans to meet her at her home when they came down to La Pine. She put on that disguise and hoped that it would be too busy for anyone to recognize her. The WCTU meeting helped to plan the trip and Betty told me all about it yesterday morning- down to the finest detail! A call to you and their plan was foiled!

Lulu: I so love to cooperate with Law enforcement! (She gives the Sheriff a quick peck on the cheek. The restaurant has let out its collective sigh of relief and is back to business as usual.) Fresh hot cookies for everyone!

(Server comes out with a tray and passes them out)

Lulu: (Stepping back to the WCTU Table) Well, Inez, it looks like you are on the hook again! I don’t know why you always want to make it hard for the people here in La Pine, but it is time to stop interfering and join in with the others who want to make a difference here!

Inez: I- I- I am sorry. I just did not want any law breakers doing business here… (Makes a move to leave)

Lulu: (Incensed) You better sit back down, I have something to say! I have a list in my pocket of the things you have tried to do to me since we met (She unfolds a paper). You tried to keep us from having a Sadie Hawkins Party when I was Event Chairman. And when that worked, you tried to burn down my café and my home on Morson St. You tried to take the property away from Linc Lincoln Lumber Mill and use it for a summer house and fireworks location. You tried to get the pastor to take my Community Service Award away from me before I even received it. You have continually tried to take over the Women’s club and instigated one thing after another with your fellow members until even Phoebe and Cecelia cannot trust you anymore. Trying to count the votes so I would not win the Presidency was the last straw until today, that is…

Inez: But I …

Lulu: But, nothing! Inez, it is time for you to pay for your misdeeds! (All of the people in the restaurant ad lib yes it is) The WCOLP is stripping you from your chairmanship and asking you to resign your membership in the club. Cecelia will go to the pastor and let him know what you have been up to and hopefully you will be removed from the Christian Education Committee, too.

Inez: You can’t do this…

WCOLP Ladies: Yes she can!

Lulu: Yes, I can and as far as you gals from Bend are concerned, don’t let her help you out or she will cause you no end of difficulty.

Aunt Mabel: I am already writing the letter in my head. And you can be sure, that we will give you the finest of recommendations as a family friendly café!

Lulu: (Handing Inez her disguise) That about sums up the situation, Inez. Tell Ralph he is always welcome here, but as for you- no more- no way. (Turning to the rest of the customers) And that’s the last word!

(Applause breaks out. Inez and her group leave and the rest of the customers get back to enjoying the fresh pots of Special Recipe Tea that are being delivered to their tables while the Sheriff and Lulu move around, checking in  with the customers.)

Music swells and finis


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