Woot! I finished the initial rough draft of the cave man play. You will have to forgive the formatting...I refuse to go back and italicize everything through the little internet method. For anyone interested to read it, here it is... A “Wheel” Good Idea
Narghj—(pronounced ‘Narj’)—a lazy cave man who mostly sleeps and grunts.
Thog—curious cave man who usually talks before thinking, usually getting him into trouble. He is also a bit sarcastic and smart-aleck.
Athal—the “manly” cave man, he bullies his way into the tribe as a newcomer. Short tempered and always trying to get his way by force, his only weakness is the ladies. However, Athal falls easily for them…and falls hard.
Grop—this cave man is mostly concerned about his stomach. He collects rocks for a hobby, much to the other cave men’s annoyance.
Pewga—the only female cave person in the clan, she cooks and is short-tempered. Though she is an excellent hunter, she is a terrible cook.
Lucas—the intelligent cave man. He is a bit more sensitive to the feelings of other cave men, and the least violent of them all. He respects his clan members, and expects it in return. Note: though Lucas participates in most of the same activities as the other clan members, he holds himself more seriously and tends to show signs of analytical concentration more than the other cave men.
(AT RISE OF CURTAIN: The curtain opens on a camp-site sort of scene in the evening-time. The landscape looks dry and rocky, with tufts of grass. On stage left is a cave opening (through which actors can enter and exit), and on stage right is a semicircle of rocks and logs for sitting on. Silly music plays in the background, mostly from a xylophone (or group of them) and drums/bongos. Narghj is asleep on one of the rocks/logs, farthest to stage right. Sitting on some of the other rocks/logs are Lucas and Thog, ad libbing (grunting to one another, picking stuff out of their hair, smashing small rocks together, etc).
Grop (through the cave on stage left, carrying a rock): Hey! Hey! Me found huge rock! (Others groan.) It now part of my collection! (Holds it up proudly.) It be my…uh…(Tries to count on his fingers, but drops the rock. Scoops it up hurriedly, then holds up three fingers with his other hand) …my fifth rock in my collection!
Lucas: Grop, do you mean your third rock?
Grop (swiping his numbered hand away): No! My fifth rock!
Thog: Should be your third rock. You too dumb to keep track of them to have five. Me stepped on one yesterday and it hurt my foot. That rock went bye-bye.
Grop (shocked): you threw away Grop’s rock (pointing to himself)?
(Enter Athal from stage right. All Other cave men look at him, astonished.)
Thog: Wait! This not your cave. Who be you?
Athal: I’m Athal. Who are all you? (points to all other cave men.)
Lucas: I’m Lucas. (Points to each cave man in turn) This is Thog, Grop and Narghj. You aren’t staying here, are you?
Athal: I am. Do you have problem with that?
Grop: (stammers) I keep my food.
Thog: This not your cave. Go to your own.
Athal: Big dinosaur decided it liked my cave. My cave not safe. So, I come here. This cave looks safe.
Thog (under his breath): you just too scaredy-baby pterodactyl to go back to your own cave.
Athal: What? What about you? You too scaredy-baby pterodactyl to fight Athal? (Points to himself.)
(Both circle each other, grunting, and snarling at each other. Narghj wakes up and watches the commotion for a moment, seeming more annoyed about being woken up than the actual fight).
Narghj: You two too noisy. And who be you? (points to Athal).
Lucas: Athal is from another cave. (Regretfully) He might be here awhile.
(Athal and Thog just begin a brawl when Pewga enters from the cave, holding a gray ceramic bowl. Athal immediately stops fighting, unable to tear his eyes off of her.)
Pewga: Lucas! I don’t get how to work fire. I make fire big, food go black. I make fire stay small, food make Grop and me sick. It’s hard to make and hurts Pewga’s hands a lot. Maybe Pewga should no cook and just hunt. Leave Lucas to cook and work strange fire.
Lucas: Oh, no, Pewga, I know you can do it. I showed you before. (Gets up.) Here, I’ll come show you again how to work the fire.
(Athal, now no longer able to stand it, hurls himself at SmellyPewga’s feet and wraps his arms around one of her legs)
Athal: Whoa, man! (Pauses, liking the sound. He decides to invent this phrase into a word!) Woman! Pewga, pretty woman, let Athal be your mate! Let Athal hold you …(leaps up and squeezes her so tight she can barely breathe) kiss you…(kisses her all over her face. Pewga flinches at each individual kiss) and…(Looks at her from head to toe, grunting in appraisal. Furious, Pewga disentangles herself from him).
Pewga: Neanderthal! (confused reaction from Athal, as if to say, “aren’t I a Neanderthal?”) The day I be your mate will be the same day as when this place gets covered in ice! (stomps back into the cave.)
Lucas (looks at Athal, then into the cave): She needs help with the fire. (shrugs and enters the cave. Athal, apparently jealous, runs into the cave after him. Offstage, a “Wait!” is heard by Lucas, then Lucas runs back on stage, stopping in front of the Others, who are interestedly listening to the commotion and racket inside the cave. [Sound effects will need to be used]. Shortly after, Athal runs out of the cave, followed by Pewga, who is chasing after him with a large bone to hit him with. Pewga stops near the entrance of the cave, obviously still angry. Narghj looks up at the commotion.)
Athal (to Narghj): All Athal wants is Pewga like Athal!
Narghj: Don’t worry. Nobody make Pewga happy.
(Pewga checks Lucas subtly for a reaction to this comment. He has no reaction.)
Thog: Yeah, you should no worry about making Pewga a mate. She lousy cook (points thumb in Pewga’s direction).
Pewga (furious): Bonehead! (Hits him on the head with her large bone).
(It is morning, and all the cave men are sitting around, waiting for their breakfast. Pewga comes out with a big plate of something unappetizing-looking (chunk of burnt meat, mush, etc.)
Pewga: Breakfast! Come get it! (The men hesitate). I woke early and cooked this. Burned my hands, too. EAT!
(Reluctantly, the men all take some food and take a bite. Immediately, there is a variety of negative reactions among them, though Lucas tries hard to be polite about her terrible cooking.)
Thog: This awful! What you cook? Doo from stegosaurus?
Pewga: (pauses, angrier by the second) You think I cook stegosaurus doo? (Approaches him, threatening). You think hunting in early morning dark easy? Pah! You could no do it. I chase young crocodile to eat this morning, and almost got bit. This all thanks I get? You no man. If you want insult Pewga’s cooking, you catch food yourself and cook it better! (Thog looks at her, baffled). Go! We go to field and you see how easy Pewga has it, catching and cooking food all herself! (shoves Thog toward stage right).
Athal: (standing up) Wait! (macho/manly) Thog, I go with you. Athal no scared of stegosaurus doo. (At Pewga’s withering look, Athal quickly corrects himself) Young crocodiles. I go catch food. I catch big food. I catch food so big that it make us all fat and feed us for week!
Pewga: (impatient) Come on, numbskull!
Grop: Wait! (All turn to Grop). Will there be rocks where you hunt? (All groan.) Grop like food and rocks. Me come, too!
(Annoyed, Pewga marches Athal and Thog off stage right, followed by Grop. Lucas and Narghj look at each other for a moment, shrug, then continue gingerly eating their breakfast.)
(A bare field is shown, with no rocks on the ground and no sight of the cave. On stage left is a tall tree trunk in place of the cave. Pewga, Thog, Athal and Grop enter stage left).
Pewga: See that? That tree has pterodactyl nest. Momma pterodactyl and babies live there. If you think you can hunt, climb tree and kill momma or baby pterodactyl, and bring them here.
(Athal enthusiastically starts up the tree, followed by a reluctant Thog and a curious Grop. All disappear, leaving Pewga behind to watch. No sonner than Grop disappears, he returns holding a rather large pterodactyl egg.)
Grop: (proudly) Me found new rock.
Pewga: Grop, that no—
(Pewga is interrupted by squawking and screeching noises. Thog and Athal come back down the tree).
Athal: (panicked) Big pterodactyl. Big pterodactyl! (notices Pewga’s smug stare, then puts on the macho front again). Good thing me kept Thog calm.
Thog: (protesting) What you talk about? You got scared first and started—(is elbowed very hard in the stomach by Athal.)
Athal: --to fight pterodactyl. But bad fight. Athal need weapon.
Pewga: (skeptical) Right. Well, Grop got egg. Let’s go back to cave. (snatches the egg from Grop’s hands, much to his shock).
Grop: My rock!
Pewga: I cook this instead. (All but Grop start to exit stage right).
Grop: You cook rocks? No wonder your cooking so bad! (Exit stage right).
(Return to cave setting. Narghj is sleeping back where he was found last time. Enter Pewga (still carrying the pterodactyl egg), Athal, Thog and Grop from stage right. Pewga looks around and frowns.)
Pewga: Where Lucas? (goes over to Narghj). Narghj—do you know where Lucas? (He doesn’t respond. She begins shaking him.) Narghj! Where went Lucas?
Narghj: nnngh…I don’t know. Lucas was here, but I got sleepy. (looks around, disoriented). Guess he left.
Pewga: Lucas! Lucas! (continues off stage left, still holding egg. Athal follows her close behind).
Grop: She still has my rock!
Thog: Big deal. Get new one.
Grop: I will. I’ll get bigger rock. (Stamps off stage right. Thog follows after him, amused. Lucas enters stage left, excited, carrying a huge stone wheel and axle. Desperate to tell someone, he goes to Narghj.)
Lucas: Narghj! Narghj, wake up! Look what I made! (Narghj sleepily lifts his head). I call it the wheel! I’m going to use this to make new ways to move around! You see, the wheel moves on the sti—(pauses)—axle like this, then—(Narghj looks at the wheel, then snatches it from Lucas and stuffs it under his head as a pillow. Narghj groans.)
Narghj: Not comfy.
Lucas: Give me that! (snatches it away from him.) I guess I’ll find someone else who cares…(stomps off stage right).
(Field setting. Grop is about to climb the tree again while Thog is on the ground. Lucas runs in from stage right.)
Lucas: Thog! Grop! Look what I made!
Grop: (stops climbing the tree and hops down, excited) You made new rock for Grop?
Lucas: No! It’s not a rock! Well, it’s made of rock, but it’s not a rock for your collection.
Grop: Hmm…Pewga cooks rocks. (Lucas rolls his eyes) Is it food?
Grop: What good your rock, then? (Returns to the tree to climb it again)
Lucas: I’m trying to tell you! Thog, this thing I made is called a wheel! I t will help us get from one place to another.
Thog: (unimpressed) Your rock no better than feet. You make waste of time.
Lucas: No, you don’t understand—
Thog: It’s stupid! (sigh) I go help Grop get rock. (Climbs tree, joining Grop).
Lucas: (sighs) Why don’t they understand? (Sits on ground and rolls the wheel back and forth, idly watching it.) Strange that something so interesting can seem so useless to them…sometimes I feel so different from the rest of them. It’s like I’m looking at something nobody else can see but me. (Contemplates.) Maybe Pewga will care… (Gets up and exits stage right.)
(Cave setting. There is nobody at the campsite now. Lucas enters stage right.)
Lucas: Where did everyone go? Pewga? Pewga! Pewga!
(Pewga enters stage left from behind the cave, not through it. Athal follows her closely behind. She starts calling as soon as Lucas begins calling her name.)
Pewga: Lucas! Lucas! (stops, seeing him) Lucas! Where you go?
Athal: Yeah, we look for you forever (Hugs Pewga close to him, but she pulls back, annoyed).
Lucas: I made something! Look! I call it a wheel.
Pewga: (enthusiastic) That great! (Pauses, then appears confused.) What it do?
(<Note: while Lucas is explaining in the following line, Athal continues trying to find ways to flirt with Pewga, such as playing with her hair, putting an arm around her waist, etc. Pewga tries to pay attention to Lucas, but each time Athal tries something, she firmly rejects his advances, becoming more distracted and annoyed with each passing second.) Lucas: The wheel will help us move around. See, this middle part—the axle—is what the wheel moves on. When it’s on the ground, it rolls easily across. Think! If we could find some way to roll across the ground instead of walking and blistering our feet every day… Pewga: Good idea, but I have better use for wheel right now! (Snatches the wheel from Lucas and hits Athal on the head with it. He roars in pain, then grabs the wheel from Pewga.). Athal: (to Lucas) Your wheel hurt! Athal no like wheel! This what Athal think of wheel! (Hurls wheel at Lucas, but misses. The wheel should continue rolling off stage right, Lucas taking off after it.) Lucas: That’s not what it was for! (Exits stage right, chasing the wheel). Pewga: (Looks after Lucas, worried. Finally angrily turns to face Athal.) Stupid! You not see that wheel was important to Lucas? Athal: So? You important to me and you no seem to care much about that. Pewga: That’s because you a rude, bone-headed scaredy-baby pterodactyl who bothers me! Athal: (crushed) You really think I’m all those things? (Sits down on a rock, verging tears). Athal really no can make Pewga happy, can he? Athal just big dumb-dumb. (Buries face in hands). Pewga: (feeling sorry for him) Well…you not big dumb-dumb…(Pats him awkwardly on the shoulder. He immediately hugs her arm.) Athal: Then you like Athal? (Disgusted, she tugs her arm away and exits stage right, through the cave). BLACKOUT SCENE SEVEN (The scene takes place on an open field, clear of trees, rocks and caves. The wheel should roll across the stage, followed by Lucas chasing after it. This should continue a number of times, each time the pair rolling/running further and further upstage. Funny xylophone music should be playing and Lucas may choose to ad lib, calling back the wheel, telling it to stop, etc.) BLACKOUT SCENE EIGHT (Cave setting: Grop, Narghj, Athal, Thog and Pewga are all sitting together outside the cave on the semicircle of legs and rocks. They seem to poke kind of idly at the food they are eating.) Pewga: It’s been a week. Where Lucas? Thog: (mocking) Where Lucas? Narghj: Maybe he went make comfier “wheel.” Grop: Or find way cook “wheel” so Grop can eat it. Athal: (reassuringly) Lucas show up soon. Pewga: (glumly looks at her plate, then everyone else.) You think that wheel was really big deal? Lucas seemed so excited from it. Thog: Wheel was stupid. Grop: (nods in agreement) Stupid. Pewga: Wait. What that sound? (A continuous squeaking/grinding is heard. All cave people look to stage right.) It Lucas! (Cave people ‘ooh’ and ‘ah’ in fascination as Lucas rides from stage right to stage left on a bicycle with stone wheels. He waves merrily as he rides past them. All cave people gaze after him, even after he has left the stage. Finally, they look at each other, disbelieving. Pewga jumps up.) Pewga: Pewga can take no more! Me love Lucas! He’s smart, nice, wise and I want to be his maaaaaaaate! (Runs after Lucas, exiting stage right. At the same time, Athal stands up.) Athal: Wait! Wait! Athal want Pewga be his mate! (Runs after her, exiting stage right. Grop, Thog and Narghj look at each other, then shrug. Grop and Thog continue eating while Narghj sets down his food and goes to sleep. One final note is played on the xylophone.) BLACKOUT CLOSE CURTAIN