Lights up on the surface of the moon.
Enter Cliff, a man in his 50s, wearing a flannel shirt.
He is, of course, also wearing a makeshift spaceman’s helmet.
He carries with him a camping chair and a small ice chest.
He’s in a pretty good mood.
He sings to himself.
“Fly me to the moooon and let me play among the stars!
Let me see what spring is like on, Jupiter and Mars
In other words, please be true
In other words…”
He unfolds the chair, sits down, and takes off his helmet.
He addresses the audience with a thick Texas dialect.
He cracks open a beer from his ice chest and takes a swig.
So, I’m sure you’re wondering how I pulled it off – getting to the moon, all by my lonesome.
I’m aware, it’s pretty impressive.
He takes a huge swig of his beer.
With all due respect to them boys over at NASA, I’d always had a sneaking suspicion that what
they do over there could be just as easily accomplished with a few dozen gallons of propane,
some decent welding, and a “can–do” attitude.
He takes anotherhuge swig of his beer.
Same with my space station. Not bad huh? Got the plastic lining from the Home Depot, the caulking I used to seal it is old. Don’t remember where I got that from. Was a little worried old caulking wouldn’t withstand the vacuum of space but guess it’s holding up just fine.
But me, I decided to do something constructive. I decided to become the first amateur scientist to convert a 1984 Chevy Caprice into a genuine rocket ship.
And I did it!
I’d love to show it to you, but it ain’t in too good of shape after the landing.
She might be totaled.
I would still consider this mission nothing short of a total success.
I am officially the 13th human to walk on the moon. And I guarantee you I’m the first guy with a
Led Zeppelin tattoo to pull it off.
Barely got through high school, made it all the way up here.
Who’s a “Dumb Trailer Trash” now Mrs. Fitzsimmons!?
I ended up going through with it for a few reasons but…
You see I’ve recently fallen into a bit of trouble with the Internal Revenue Service over some …
irregularities in my tax return from ‘bout 6 years ago.
They’ve been trying to reach me for a few weeks – I’d like to see them try now. I’m on the moon
bitch! What are you going to do ‘bout that?
writing the damn laws. But where does the IRS spend it’s time and energy? They spend it
investigating lil’ ol’ Cliff Mullens.
I cain’t even pay my mortgage and Uncle Sam wants a piece of the nothing I’ve got.
You cain’t trust the government, you cain’t trust your job, you certainly cain’t trust scientists –
They’ll tell you getting to the moon by yourself is impossible …
What can you trust?
This little miracle between your ears, that’s just about it. You can trust your instincts, your guts,
your own reason…
Unless you’re a bit slow then I guess you shouldn’t trust that either.
Cliff takes a big drink.
If you’re lucky you’ll find someone you can trust…
I don’t know that I’ve ever been that lucky.
But “all’s fair in love and war” – Right?
They must say that for a reason…
You know when Brenda packed up and bounced, I didn’t know why. Thought I’d just failed as a
Maybe I did… But I didn’t realize…
When I heard she remarried just 3 months after the paperwork was signed… I started to put the
A beat, Cliff takes a long swig of his beer.
But if the man upstairs wants my 2–cents I think he should heavily consider hating marriage in
general as well.
… Divorce is hell. Least mine was. You spend 10 years building something then –
… You know?
Hell, I think the only thing that got me feeling like me again was when I decided I’d spend my
days trying to get to the moon… That was the real fun of it, putting the pieces together. Finding
A sad smile creeps across his face.
Made me feel awake for the first time …
Guess I have to address the elephant in the room. How I’m planning on getting back… Well to
be honest I didn’t let anybody know I was coming up here so… You know… Not like there’s an
auto shop or a migwelder for me to put my Chevy back together anyways…
I knew… When I first started the project, I knew what success really looked like.
This wasn’t no split–second decision…
So, you don’t got to feel bad for me.
Don’t bother me none, the quiet… I ain’t lonely… I made history – I did. Even if nobody will
It’s worth it…
The Sesame Street Song “I Don’t Want to Live on the Moon” plays.
Lights down slowly
Straton Rushing is a dramatic writer originally from Sonora, Texas. In 2022 he was the recipient of the Bela Kiralyfalvi Playwriting Award, he was a finalist for the Hear Me Out Monologue Festival, and he received an Honorable Mention from the William Faulkner Literary Competition. His works have been featured with Phoenix Theatre Company, Capital Repertory Theatre, Orpheus Theatre Company, SceneShop, Festival De La Bête Noire and other companies around the US and internationally. His radio plays have appeared with Garden of Voices, Theatrically Speaking and Between Acts. Recent publications include plays in the Silk Road Review, Nine Cloud Journal, the Ponder Review and with Smith & Kraus. Straton holds degrees in Theatre and Philosophy from the University of Texas at Arlington. He is currently an MFA Dramatic Writing candidate at Arizona State University. Straton is a proud member of the Dramatists Guild of America. StratonThePlaywright.com Production Inquiries: StratonRushing@gmail.com