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The Way I Remember Itby Jeannette Jaquish (c) 2005
Adults or Older Kids:
Mom (prop handler) -
Dad (optional prop handler) -
Jamey (boy or girl)-
Scamp the Dog -
CHORUS (as many kids as you want)-
SET: Grandma & Grandps sit in ROCKERS reading (can be a hidden script) downstage at side.
There is a very small TABLE upstage center (to hold the cake).
A STICK lies onstage near where Joey will be batting.
Chorus is spread across upstage or on upstage opposite side of Grandma & Gramps.
(Grandma & Gramps sit in rockers, reading.)
GRANDMA: What's new in the paper, Honey?
GRAMPS: Well, there's this new play the kids at (your theater name here: _______________________) are performing. Looks interesting.
GRANDMA: What's it called?
GRAMPS: Umm.. "The Way I Remember It", by Jeannette Jaquish.
GRANDMA: Oh, that sounds cute. Nostalgic.
GRAMPS: Yeah, maybe we should go.
GRANDMA: That would be fun.
( JAMEY ENTERS.)
JAMEY: Grandma? Gramps? Whatcha doing?
GRAMPS: Just reading the paper, Jamey.
GRANDMA: Just studying this crochet pattern, honey.
JAMEY: Would you tell me a story?
GRAMPS: Tell you a story? What story do you want?
JAMEY: Tell me about when you and Grandma first met.
GRAMPS: When we first met? My goodness, that was a long time ago.
GRANDMA: A long looong time ago. We started dating in college, but when we met we were just children. About your age, Jamey.
JAMEY: My age? Wow! What did you look like?
(ENTER ALICE skipping rope)
GRANDMA: Oh, I was little and pretty with dimples and curly brown hair (describe Aliceís appearance) and a sparkling smile. I liked to play jacks or jump-rope with my friends. I had lots of friends.
(ENTER GIRLS. Play jump rope.)
CHORUS: Cinderella, dressed in Yella,
Went upstairs to Kiss a fella.
Made a mistake and kissed a snake.
How many doctors did it take? 1, 2, 3, 4, (continue counting until jumper misses)
JAMEY: And you, Gramps? What did you look like?
(ENTER JOEY tossing up and catching a baseball and SCAMP)
GRAMPS: Oh, I was a handsome little fellow, had more hair then. It was _____________ (describe Joeyís hair color and appearance). I was always flying kites or playing baseball with my pals.
(ENTER BOYS with ball gloves, plastic bat, wearing ball caps. TOMMY carries a stick. Play catch, play ball.)
CHORUS: Take me out to the ball game,
Take me out to the park,
Buy me some peanuts and cracker jacks,
I donít care if we never get back
And its root, root, root for the home team
If they donít win itís a shame,
And itís one, two, three strikes youíre out
At the old ball game!
GRANDMA: Baseball. Baseball???
GRAMPS: Yes, what about it?
GRANDMA: That was baseball you were playing?
GRAMPS: Course it was. What did you think it was?
GRANDMA: Throwing that dirty stringy thing around? I thought it was a dirty sock with a potato inside.
(A BOY throws the ball offstage and a beaten up ball is tossed back. JOEY tosses aside the nice bat and Tommy hands him the stick. The game continues.)
GRAMPS: Well, it was a little weather-beaten. I didnít get new toys whenever mine got a little scuffed. . (MOM brings on SPARKLY JUMP-ROPE and gives it to Alice and takes her rope) My family for sure didnít treat me like royalty like yours treated you. (DAD comes on and puts a CROWN on ALICE'S head. MOM & DAD look at her with sickly loving smiles and EXIT.)
GRANDMA: Hmmph! Well, it didnít look like the game of baseball. I never did see anyone actually HIT the ball. Seems like you were always throwing your gloves on the ground and kicking up a dust storm, arguing over if it was a ball or a strike. B
(STEVIE pitches the ball past JOEY who does not swing.)
JOEY: That was a ball!
STEVIE: That was a strike!
FREDDY, TOMMY & STEVIE: STRIKE! (BOYS throw stuff down and wrestle. SCAMP barks.)
CHORUS (chaos noise) : Ball! Strike! No fair! Cheater! Boo! Walkout!
STEVIE: Hey! Let's go catch frogs!
BOYS: Yeah, Let's go catch frogs!
(BOYS EXIT taking all ball stuff and leaving it backstage)
GRAMPS: Ha! Ha! As if you were ever at the dusty old vacant lot to see. You were always la-dee-dah-ing at your tea parties. La-dee-dah, La-dee-dah!
ALICE & FRIENDS (ENTERING): La-dee-dah, La-dee-dah!
CHORUS: La-dee-dah, La-dee-dah!
GRAMPS: And making silly girl talk.
GINGER: Iím getting ballerina lessons!
BETH: I have a hundred dresses in my closet!
RAMONA: Iím getting a princess canopy bed!
LIZZIE: My mommy is buying me a diamond necklace.
ALICE: Weíre moving into to a pink castle and Iím going to have 100 ponies!
GRANDMA: I donít remember that. What I remember is you boys bullying us while we were trying to have a conversation.
GINGER: These cookies are delicious.
BETH: Yes, they are. And the raisins are so nutritious.
RAMONA: I think we should bake 10 dozen and give them to poor children!
LIZZIE: Iíll get my Daddy to drive us down to the orphanage!
ALICE: Good idea! Letís wash our hands and get started.
(BOYS ENTER behind them yelling.)
TOMMY: Hey! Dumb girls at a dumb tea party!
STEVIE: Here! Have some delicious dirt cookies with spider filling!
FREDDY: And delicious cow pies Ė take a bite!
JOEY: Hey Alice! You look like this! (makes ugly face)
SCAMP: Ruff ruff ruff!
GRANDMA: And acting like pigs!
(BOYS run in circles oinking. GIRLS disdainfully EXIT. BOYS EXIT. JOEY gets invitation.)
JAMEY: Wow! So you didnít like each other at all?
GRANDMA: Oh, no, thatís not true, Jamey. But children do have their squabbles.
GRAMPS: Especially when some children are brought up to think the world revolves around them. Like when I invited her to my birthday party.
(ALICE ENTERS jumping rope. JOEY ENTERS with invitation, nervous, smoothing his hair.)
CHORUS: Happy birthday to me,
I can't wait to be,
One more year older,
Happy birthday to me!
JOEY (walks up to her): Good morning, Alice. Here is an invitation to my birthday party. My mom says I can have a clown.
(ALICE does not take invitation.)
ALICE (sarcastic): You must be so happy. It will be like having a twin brother. But, oh dear! I might get the two of you mixed up and give your present to the clown. No thanks, Joey-Schmoey!
(ALICE walks to other side, jumps rope again.)
GRANDMA: Of course it is a scientific fact that girls mature faster than boys.
JOEY (messes up hair, walks to ALICE, meanly): Here, Alice. My mother says I HAVE to invite you to my birthday party, whether I want to or not.
ALICE: Thank you Joey, Iíd love to come to your party.
JOEY: No! No! No!(grabs invitation back) Just drop off the present! Got it? If any girl comes inside my house, Iím gonna drop a lizard down her dress! (EXITS and gets present)
(JOEY EXITS and leaves INVITATION backstage.)
JAMEY: He said that? He said heíd drop a lizard down your dress if you came to his party?
GRANDMA: Yes. GRAMPS: No.
JAMEY: But Grandma, did you go?
GRANDMA: Yes, Jamey. I bought him a present and I went to his party.
JOEY (ENTERING with SCAMP, singing to himself): Happy birthday to me. I can't wait to be, One more year older ...
GINGER, BETH, TOMMIE & FREDDIE (ENTERING): Happy Birthday, Joey! (They stand around chatting.)
JAMEY: Did she, Gramps?
GRAMPS: Yes, she did. We agree on something.
JAMEY: Tell me what happened!
GRAMPS: It was a beautiful spring day.
CHORUS: Tweet-tweet, chirrup! Chick-chick! (bird noises)
GRAMPS: The perfect day for a party. Sunny, warm...
GRANDMA: It was raining.
(ALICE ENTERS carrying present.).)
CHORUS: (Rain sounds: hand rubbing, to tongue-ďclopĒs, to cup-handed claps, then reverse, from L to R.)
GRANDMA: I walked 5 blocks in the rain carrying that heavy present.
(ALICE walks shivering around until rain sounds finish.).)
GRANDMA: But even so, I got there early.
ALICE: (KNOCK KNOCK)
(JOEY "opens" the door.)
ALICE (nicely): Hello, Joey. Happy birthday.
JOEY (mean): Oh, itís you. Youíre all wet. You better shake off before you come inside. My present! (takes it, rattles it) Iíll bet itís something dumb. (hands it back)
GRAMPS: You were late! Everyone was already there.
(ALL OTHER KIDS run on to join the party group.)
CHORUS (all talking one line at once): What a fun party! What did you bring? Who else is here? Did you taste the dip? I love the decorations. I hope we play pin the tail on the donkey.
JOEY: Thank you for coming, Alice.
GINGER: Youíre late, Alice. Did you forget?
BETH: We thought you werenít coming.
RAMONA: You missed pin the tail on the donkey.
LIZZIE: Why are you late?
ALICE: I hid my shoes but my mom found them. Hereís your stupid present. (hands present to JOEY) My mother bought it. I donít know what it is. And I donít care.
JOEY: Well, thank you anyway. Look, Alice. Iím showing everyone the tricks my dog can do.
Scamp, Sit! (SCAMP obeys all commands.)
JOEY: Scamp, Roll over.
STEVIE: Look at that!
JOEY: Scamp, what is 12 minus 9?
CHAMP: Bark Bark Bark
FREDDIE: Iím telling everyone at school about this!
JOEY: Scamp, speak!
SCAMP: The Roof is Ruff as Bark!
GRANDMA: Oh, your dog couldnít do tricks!! He was a dirty, trouble-making mutt!
(SCAMP runs around barking causing children to giggle. SCAMP snuffles the back of ALICEís skirt. She screams and jumps. JOEY puts down present and chases SCAMP trying to catch him. )
ALICE (when dog snuffles her): Eeeek!
JOEY: Scamp! Bad dog!
(SCAMP EXITS to get stuffed raccoon, or rabbit or squirrel)
STEVIE: Look at that!
FREDDIE: Iím telling everyone at school about this!
GRANDMA: And then he dragged in a stinky dead raccoon and ran around the room.
(SCAMP ENTERS and chases kids with raccoon, CHILDREN scream.)
CHORUS: Ewww, stinky! Pee-yooo!<
(SCAMP stops & sits panting.
MOM ENTERS and places cake on small center table and lights candles.
CHILDREN stand behind cake, except ALICE & JOEY who stand at Left & Right of cake.)
JOEY: My birthday cake!
ALL KIDS & CHORUS: Yay! (ad lib how good the cake looks)
GRAMPS (wait for candles to be lit): Oh, Scamp was just playing. And it wasnít THAT stinky. You girls over react to everything.
GRANDMA: Like you did when it was time to blow out your candles?
JAMEY: Blow out the candles? What happened? Grandma? (no answer) Gramps? Gramps???
GRAMPS: Well, everyone sang Happy Birthday ....
CHORUS, BOYS & GIRLS: Happy birthday to you,
You live in a zoo,
You look like a monkey
and you smell like one toooooooooo! (clap and cheer)
TOMMY: Blow out the candles, Joey! But first --
BOYS & GIRLS: Make a wish, Joey! Make a wish!
(JOEY closes his eyes and makes a wish, takes a breath but ALICE leans forward and blows out the candles. JOEY bursts into tears. MOM EXITS.)
GRAMPS: She blew them out.
JAMEY: You did?
GRANDMA (ashamed): I did.
JOEY: Now I wonít get my wish! (Sob! Covers face. Keeps sobbing.)
CHORUS, BOYS & GIRLS: What was your wish?
JAMEY: What was your wish?
GRANDMA: Yes, what was your wish? You wouldnít tell.
GRAMPS: Well, I guess I can tell you now. My wish, Alice. . . . was that you and I would get married when we grew up.
GRANDMA: Oh, Joseph, I never knew.
GRAMPS: I loved you Alice. Even as a young boy.
GRANDMA: You did??? I was secretly in love with you! But I thought you hated me!
JOEY: I hate you Alice! Get out of my birthday party!
ALICE: Gladly! (EXITS, GIRLS follow)
GRAMPS: Well why did you think that?
JOEY: And donít come back!
BOYS: Yeah! (slapping JOEY on the back) Come on! (BOYS EXIT other side.)
GRANDMA: Oh, Joseph...
GRAMPS: Oh, Alice....
JAMEY: Aaaack! Theyíre gonna kiss! (EXITS.)
(CHORUS covers eyes.)
CHORUS: Aaaack! THE END!
MUSIC & BOWS
(Share cake with audience!)
CAST: Difficulty of Part
Adults or Older Kids:
Grandma (med difficulty) (can hide script in newspaper)
Gramps (med difficulty) (can hide script in instructions)
Mom- (carries in props, cake and lights candles, no lines)
Dad - optional
Jamey (med difficulty)
CHORUS is optional. You can replace them with recorded music and sound FX. The actors can sing their songs. The point of having a chorus is to give parts to younger children or non-actors. For instance, the kindergarten can be the chorus, and the 1st grade be the actors.
Props = jump ropes, fancy jump rope, crown, baseball, dirty sock ball, bat, stick, comb, invitation in envelope, wrapped present, stuffed raccoon (or squirrel or rabbit), cake, candles, matches or lighter.
STAGE: Grandma, Gramps and Jamey are either up stage center or down stage side. Chorus is upstage spread wide. Small table center upstage, below chorus.
PROMPTING THE ACTORS:
Grandps and Grandma can prompt the actors when they forget their lines, if G&G make it sound like they are telling the story. For example, when a child forgets a line, Grandma could say, "And Joey made the ugliest face and said, "Alice! Look at me!"", and Joey will remember and interrupt her to finish his line. And probably the audience will not even realize.
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