The One That Got Away

Characters: FISHERMAN.
Props: A chair, and a mobile phone. A giant fish is optional ... the fish never actually has to be seen, the fisherman only has to react to its immense size.

A boat. A fisherman wrestles with his line in a titanic struggle ‘twixt man and fish.

FISHERMAN: I’ve got you now, you brute … you’re mine!

More heaving on the line.

FISHERMAN: I’ll see you chunked and canned, by God – you are not getting away from me!

One last tug and the fish is landed. He looks in awe at his catch.

FISHERMAN: That’s enormous … that’s … that’s record-breaking! I’ll be famous!

He pulls out a mobile telephone.

FISHERMAN: Charlotte! My love! We’re rich!


I’m on the boat, my love ...


This fish! It’s colossal! It’s a record! We’ll be famous!


Found someone else?


Been gone too long?

(a longer pause, as she hangs up)

He stares at the telephone in disbelief, then sinks to his seat. Stares at the floor for a moment, then looks around him. A shrug.

Standing, he heaves the catch back over the side.

FISHERMAN: Oh well. Plenty more fish in the sea.



Characters:A MAN, a WOMAN and their DRUNK brother.
Props: None required. You could have a glass in the hand of any one of the male characters.

A man and a woman sit, close enough to show friendship and nothing more. The man is contemplative. He may be warmed by whisky, but is not intoxicated. The woman is passive and subdued.

MAN: She was a good woman. Compassionate.

WOMAN: She was that.

MAN: A warm, generous woman. Never a harsh word. A kind woman.

WOMAN: Yes, she was that.

Another man stumbles on stage. He has been more than warmed by his whisky; he is positively drunk. He remains standing, but may be slightly unsteady.

DRUNK: Oh! There you two are. What’re you doing, hiding out back here? The party’s out there.

MAN: (harshly) It’s a wake, not a party.

WOMAN: We were talking about how she’ll be missed.

DRUNK: Missed? Who’s going to miss a bitter, nagging old shrew like her?

(becoming angry)

I never met anyone with a kind word for her. You never head what they said about here. She never liked me … I would cross the street when I saw her. She pissed her last in a miserable old house, as a miserable old woman, pining for a miserable old man. I’m glad she’s gone.


What did she ever do for us, eh? What did she ever do for us?

Woman looks up, eyes blazing. Deliver the line as you will; it could be ferocious, resigned, cold.

WOMAN: She gave birth to us all. Does anything else matter?

lights fade