Monday, November 9, 2009

Lizzie: Act II

[Dramatis Personae
    Lizzie, a nine-year-old girl
    Ms. Ryane, a school volunteer

    Scene: A bench outside a portable school classroom on an ordinary public school campus]



   Ms. Ryane.   All right, Lizzie, I'm going to be the bully and you're going to be you.

   Lizzie.   [Nodding.]   Okay.

   Ms. Ryane.   [Holding her arm out straight with her hand raised flat.]   See how I'm doing this? This means: Talk to the hand! Got that?

[Lizzie giggles and nods.]

   Ms. Ryane.   Good. As soon as I start, you give me the hand, cross your arms, turn your back and walk away. Got it?

[Lizzie nods more.]

   Ms. Ryane.   [In a bully voice.]   Lizzie you suck! You're so lame, Lizzie! You don't have any friends and nobody likes you!

[Lizzie stares, frozen in place.]

   Ms. Ryane.   Lizzie, you are way letting me win....You can't let me get this stuff out. Let's see you stand with that hand up. Go on.

[Lizzie slowly stands and kind of holds her hand up.]

   Ms. Ryane.   Nope, 'fraid not. That's a spaghetti hand. Show me your strongest hand.

[Lizzie tries again.]

   Ms. Ryane.   Like this.   [Showing a strong arm and flat hand.]   Here we go: "Lizzie you are so one likes you!"   [Lizzie doesn't move.]   As soon as I speak, show me that hand. Try again: "Lizzie you suuu—"

[Lizzie's arm comes up, her hand in Ms. Ryane's face.]

   Ms. Ryane.   That's it! Good girl...that's it. Now, after you give me the hand, cross those arms. When you cross the arms you're pulling all your power back. You're saying, "Bully-boy, this conversation is over and I have no time for you!" Try the whole thing. Ready?

[Lizzie nods happily.]

   Ms. Ryane.   [Bully voice.]   Hey, Lizzie—

[Lizzie flashes the hand, crosses her arms and slumps off.]

   Ms. Ryane.   Whoa! No way on the walk....You have to stand super-straight and march....March, me.   [Bully voice.]   "Lizzie, you're so stu—"

[Lizzie ties all the pieces together and stomps away.]

   Ms. Ryane.   Excellent! Notice how strong you feel inside when you make your body strong? Did you feel that?

   Lizzie.   I did...I really did.

   Ms. Ryane.   Lizzie, I talked to your grandma about the boy and here's what you need to know: there's a team around you. You have your grandma, your grandpa, your mom, your teacher and me. We're your team but you're the team leader, so you have to keep us in the loop and let us know what's happening. One word from this boy or anyone who ever tries to bully you and give 'em the hand. Good?

   Lizzie.   Yeah.

   Ms. Ryane.   Back to class.   [Lizzie turns to leave.]   Except one thing. Hug.

[They hug.]


Lizzie: Act I
Lizzie: Act III

Dear Olivia

I love you with all they heart will you mary thy for you are thy only one for me my soul mate!
—Russell, 3rd grade

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