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Seeing Roses

Seventeen-year-old Jason Grillo suddenly regains his sight after being blind since age seven. He finds that his life is unexpectedly complex.

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Seeing Roses

Seventeen-year-old Jason Grillo suddenly regains his sight after being blind since age seven. He finds that his life is unexpectedly complex as he deals with new relationships and tries to understand two pretty girls named Rose.


Author:    Joyce Back

Synopsis:

When the story opens, all the teens are at a block dance organized by the Church of the Spirit. Reverend Bentley announces a scholarship to be given by the church. The scholarship will pay an entire year of college, or if the recipient decides not to attend college, he or she will be given $10,000 cash. The selection of the awardee will be based on service to the community. 
      Rose Carroll has spent a great deal of time volunteering at a local hospital, and she is a strong candidate for the award. Although she wants to go to college, she is confused about a career choice. Her father wants her to become a nurse, but she is very interested in music and writes her own songs. She taught herself to play several instruments, and like many musicians, she is very good at math. 
      Jason Grillo, who is blind, and his mother, a widow, recently moved to town and are living next door to the Carrolls. When Mr. Carroll learns that Jason needs help with math, he volunteers his Rose as a tutor. Rose reluctantly goes to the Grillo home to help Jason. 
      Rose is impressed with Jason’s intelligence and ability to interpret the world through his amazing sense of hearing. Jason does not like math, and Rose tells him to listen to music to help him get a sense of math. When she hears Jason jokingly sing ‘opera,’ she realizes that he has a good voice, and she recommends to her friends Carter and Lincoln that they take Jason into their band as a singer. Carter and Lincoln ask Jason to join the band, and he joyfully agrees. 
      Mrs. Grillo tells Jason that tests at the medical center have determined that he can regain sight in one eye by means of a transplant. She herself will be the donor. 
      Rose Bentley wants to win the scholarship money because she wants to use it to move to Los Angeles. She convinces Mimi and Carlie to sign in as Rose Bentley when they pick up trash in the park, telling them that the reason is so that her father will stop nagging at her to do volunteer work. Rose B. promises her friends that, if she wins, she’ll give the money to someone else. 
      Rose Bentley doesn’t like Rose Carroll. She overhears a conversation that makes her realize that Rose Carroll has fallen in love with Jason. When Jason returns from his surgery, Rose Bentley appears at his home. She tells Jason that Rose Carroll is the girlfriend of Lincoln. Jason is very disappointed, but he agrees to go on a picnic with Rose Bentley. 
      Rose Carroll visits Jason to congratulate him on having sight restored. Jason tells her that he is going on a picnic with Rose Bentley. Rose Carroll tries to be brave, but she runs home in tears. Carter and Lincoln overhear the conversation and they angrily tell Jason that if he’s going to hurt their friend Rose, he cannot be in the band. 
      Jason is very confused as he waits for Rose Bentley to pick him up to go on a picnic. But Rose Bentley comes to his house in a very bad mood and tells him she’s going out with someone else. She’s angry because her father wants her to go to college, and she wants to go to LA. 
      After Rose Bentley leaves, Jason is greeted by Reverend Bentley and Mr. Carroll. They congratulate him on his sight, and ask him why he seems unhappy. Jason cannot confide in the fathers of the two Roses, so he pretends that a “friend” is having problems with two girls. The men realize that he is talking about himself, but they do not know that the two girls in question are their daughters, and each man unknowingly gives advice most likely to cause distress to his own daughter. 
      Jason and Rose Carroll clear up the confusing issue between them and go out on a date – Jason’s first date as a sighted person. Carter and Lincoln take Jason back into the band. 
      The final block dance of the summer takes place. Reverend Bentley announces the winner of the scholarship – it is Rose Bentley. She graciously accepts the award, and Mimi and Carlie run angrily forward, demanding that she give it up. Reverend Bentley is shocked to find that his daughter has been deceiving him, and he has a heart attack. 
      Rose Bentley and Rose Carroll meet after Reverend Bentley gets out of the hospital. Rose Bentley is contrite at the way she has behaved. The two girls talk about their difficulties with their parents’ expectations, and they help each other come up with an idea that will allow them to pursue their dreams while keeping their parents happy: Rose Carroll will become a music teacher, and Rose Bentley will go to college and major in theater.

Seeing Roses

Seeing Roses

By Joyce Back


Copyright 2006  

by 

Joyce Back

All Rights Reserved

CAUTION: Professionals and amateurs are hereby warned that SEEING ROSES is subject to a royalty.  It is fully protected under the copyright laws of the United States of America, the British Commonwealth, including Canada, and all other countries of the Copyright Union.  All rights, including professional, amateur, motion picture, recitation, lecturing, public reading, radio broadcasting, television, and the rights of translation into foreign language are strictly reserved. 

The amateur live stage performance rights to SEEING ROSES  are controlled exclusively by Drama Source and royalty arrangements and licenses must be secured well in advance of presentation.  PLEASE NOTE that amateur royalty fees are set upon application in accordance with your producing circumstances.  When applying for a royalty quotation and license please give us the number of performances intended and dates of production.  Royalties are payable one week before the opening performance of the play to Drama Source Co., 1588 E. 361 N., St. Anthony, Idaho 83445, unless other arrangements are made. 

Royalty of the required amount must be paid whether the play is presented for charity or gain, and whether or not admission is charged.  For all other rights than those stipulated above, apply to Drama Source Company, 1588 E. 361 N. St. Anthony, Idaho 83445.

Copying from this book in whole or in part is strictly forbidden by law, and the right of performance is not transferable.

Whenever the play is produced, the following notice must appear on all programs, printing and advertising for the play, “Produced by special arrangement with Drama Source Co.”

Due authorship credit must be given on all programs, printing and advertising for the play.


No one shall commit or authorize any act or omission by which the copyright or the rights to copyright of this play may be impaired.

No one shall make changes in this play for the purpose of production without written permission.

Publication of this play does not imply availability for performance.    Both amateurs and professionals considering a production are strongly advised in their own interests to apply to Drama Source Company for written permission before starting rehearsals, advertising, or booking a theatre.

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The Cast:

Rose Carroll Teen girl entering her senior year in high school; nice but not a pushover

Rose Bentley Teen girl entering her senior year in high school; restless and discontented, also vain and manipulative

Jason Grillo Blind teen boy entering a new high school; intellectual type

Mrs. Grillo Jason’s mother; devoted mom

Mrs. Carroll Rose Carroll’s mother, perky and twangy Mr. Carroll Rose Carroll’s father, a rather serious                  accountant

Reverend Bentley    Rose Bentley’s father, a minister; has blind spot for his daughter

Carlie and Mimi Rose Bentley’s friends; blindly loyal to Rose

Erin and Josie Rose Carroll’s friends; fun-loving happy types

Carter and Lincoln Teen boys entering their senior year in  high school; their love is classic rock and they’re trying to start a band


The Set:

The sidewalk/street in front of the homes of Rose Carroll and Jason Grillo.  The two homes are represented by two front porches, one for the Carroll home and one for the Grillo home.  All the action of the play takes place in the sidewalk/street or on one of the porches.


Act One

Scene 1

{The set throughout both acts consists of two front porches, one for the Carroll home and one for the Grillo home.  Each porch has a door leading into the house.  The porches are large enough to accommodate three or four actors.  Actors can exit and enter through the doors or via stage left/right.  A nice touch to the set would be a suggestion of a rose garden near the Grillo porch.}

{Scene 1 features a block dance held in the street in front of the porches; therefore the set for this scene should include perhaps balloons or other festive touches, a CD player, and a sign that says ‘Church of the Spirit Block Dance’.}

{When the curtain opens, all teen cast members except Jason are on stage.  They are milling about, talking and laughing.}

{Enter Reverend Bentley.}

Reverend Bentley:  Okay, everyone, it’s time to call it a night.  Did you all have a good time at the first of the Church of the Spirit summer block dances?

All Teens:  Yes!

Reverend Bentley:  Great!  Before you leave, I want to tell you about a wonderful new honorary title and scholarship to be provided by the church.  The title is Young Citizen of the Year and the winner will be chosen based on his or her contributions to the community.

Rose Carroll:  Did you say that there would be a scholarship also, Reverend Bentley?

Reverend Bentley:  Indeed there will be, Rose.  And you will be a strong candidate because of your volunteer work at the hospital.  The scholarship will pay one full year of tuition and living expenses at a university of your choice!  Or, if by chance the recipient is not planning to attend college, a check for $10,000 will be presented instead.

{All teens express interest and amazement in various ways.}

Carter:  Reverend Bentley, sir.  Excuse my asking this question, but who will choose the winner?

Reverend Bentley:  {laughing}  That’s a very good question, Carter, because of course my daughter Rose will be in the competition.  So I told the board that I could not be involved in the selection.

Erin:  {to Rose Carroll}  Rose Bentley wins everything anyway.  What’s the point of applying?

Josie:  {sarcastically}  Rose Bentley gets whatever she wants because she’s sooo popular…

Erin:  And sooo selfish and annoying.

Rose Carroll:  Sshhh!  She’ll hear you.

Josie:  I don’t care if she does.

Reverend Bentley:  You can get your application package at my house next week.  I wish all of you could win because you are all fine young people and very deserving.  Don’t forget to pick up your application, and good luck!

{Reverend Bentley exits. The teens talk and laugh as they move off stage.}

Scene 2

{Mr. and Mrs. Carroll walk on stage from right or left as if they’re arriving home.}

Mrs. Carroll:  [stopping]  Oh, there’s our new neighbor!  Hello, Meredith!

[Mrs. Grillo enters, brushing off her clothes.]

Mrs. Grillo:  Hello!  Excuse my appearance.  I’ve been clearing leaves around the rose bushes.

Mrs. Carroll:  Your new home has lovely rose gardens.  Oh, I don’t believe you’ve met my husband, John Carroll.  John, this is Meredith Grillo, our new neighbor.

[Mr. Carroll and Mrs. Grillo shake hands.]

[Enter Reverend Bentley.]

Reverend Bentley:  John, Joy…just the people I wanted to see.

Mrs. Carroll:  Hello, Walter.  Have you met our new neighbor, Meredith Grillo?  Meredith, Walter is the pastor of the Church of the Spirit.  He has done amazing things for the young people in the neighborhood.

Reverend Bentley:  I certainly have met her.  I invited her son Jason to the block dance.  How is Jason doing, by the way?  I hope he’s beginning to accept his move here.

Mrs. Grillo:  Yes…but he misses his grandfather very much.

Mr. Carroll:  {to Mrs. Grillo}  Will Jason be going to Richardson High School in the fall?  Our daughter Rose is going to be a senior.

Mrs. Grillo:  Yes…Jason will be a senior also, but he’ll be in a special class.  You see, he’s blind.

Mr. Carroll:  I am sorry to hear that.

Mrs. Grillo:  Thank you.  His blindness resulted from the auto accident that caused his father’s death.  Jason was seven at the time.

Reverend Bentley:  Jason is an extremely bright young man.  He has a little trouble with mathematics, I’m told, but he is an excellent writer and very good at languages.

Mr. Carroll:  Our Rosie is good at math.  I’m sure she’d be happy to tutor him this summer so that he can start school with improved skills.

Mrs. Carroll:  That’s a super idea!  But he’ll have to listen to some of her songs.

Mrs. Grillo:  Her songs?

Mrs. Carroll:  Rose plays guitar and composes her own songs.  Last year her songs were loud rock things, but this year it’s been all country and western.  I think that’s my influence.  I’ve always loved country music.

Mrs. Grillo:  I’m sure Jason would love to hear her songs.

Mr. Carroll:  We’re hoping she won’t take her devotion to music too seriously.  We want her to go to nursing school.

Reverend Bentley {to Mrs. Grillo}:  My daughter – also named Rose – is the same age as Rose Carroll.  I know she’ll be happy to visit Jason and help him in any way she can.

Mrs. Carroll:  By the way, Meredith, we’re having a little get-together a week from Saturday…why don’t you and Jason join us?  Our Rose will be there, and so will Rose Bentley and some of the other young people in the neighborhood.

Mrs. Grillo:  We would love to…but…we might not be able to make it.  Jason doesn’t know about this, and I don’t want him to know just yet.  Because of some new surgical techniques, he might be a candidate for a cornea transplant.  If the tests say that he is, he’ll be in the hospital next week.

Reverend Bentley:  That is excellent news!

Mr. Carroll:  Has a donor been found…or is Jason on a waiting list?

Mrs. Grillo:  I am going to be the donor.  I’m going to give one eye so that my son can see.  We moved to this state because the best transplant doctor in the country is here at the university medical center.

Mrs. Carroll:  That is a wonderful gift to give your child!

Mrs. Grillo:  Any parent would do the same…

[They all nod in agreement.]

Mrs. Carroll:  If we can help at all, please let us know.

Mrs. Grillo:  Thank you. I’ll phone you when I get the test results.

[Mrs. Carroll hugs Mrs. Grillo, then Mrs. Grillo exits.]

Reverend Bentley:  Before I forget the reason I walked over here to talk to you, I received a phone call this morning from the governor’s office…

Mr. Carroll:  The governor’s office?

Reverend Bentley:  Yes.  I was told that the governor is going to honor a group of high school seniors who show outstanding talent in the arts.  His office is accepting recommendations from church and community leaders.

Mrs. Carroll:  That would be an honor for any student!

Reverend Bentley:  Yes, and I want you both to know – I’m going to recommend Rose.

Mr. Carroll:  Rose?  Why?

Reverend Bentley:  Why?  How can you ask that, John?  You have a daughter who taught herself to play several instruments and who writes songs, both music and lyrics…

Mrs. Carroll:  Well, yes, Rose certainly has shown some musical talent.  But it’s a hobby for her, Walter, and I don’t expect her to ever take it seriously.

Reverend Bentley:  Perhaps…but I’m going to recommend her for a citation just the same.

Mr. Carroll:  That’s good of you, Walter, but personally I would not want to see Rose distracted from more serious pursuits.

Reverend Bentley:  My dear friend, the path of life is long, with many twists and turns.  Rose must find her own way.

[Reverend Bentley exits.]

Mrs. Carroll:  {smiling}  I wish, John, that the good Reverend would be as clear-sighted when it comes to his own daughter.

Mr. Carroll:  Indeed!

[Mr. and Mrs. Carroll exit through their porch door.]


Scene 3

{Erin and Josie enter.  Josie is carrying a basket.  They sit on the steps of Rose Carroll’s porch.  Josie pulls scissors, colored paper, and Elmer’s Glue from the basket.  The girls begin cutting origami type shapes.}


{Rose Carroll enters through the porch door.}

Rose Carroll:  Hi!

Erin and Josie:  Hi!

Rose Carroll:  What are you making?

Erin:  Mobiles.  See?  You make a bunch of these origami thingies, and then you glue them to a board and hang it from the ceiling.

Rose Carroll:  Cool!  Can I make one?

Josie:  Sure.  We’re giving them to Carter and Lincoln to decorate Carter’s dad’s garage for their first concert.

Rose Carroll:  Good idea!  I gave them a song I wrote last year.  It’s going to be their signature song.

Erin:  Why don’t you sing in their band, Rosie?  They need a singer.

Rose Carroll:  Oh, I don’t know.  It would take a lot of time…and my parents wouldn’t be happy about it.  Anyways, C and L are way into classic rock and I’m way into country!

Josie:  Did you hear what they named the band?  The Presidents!

{The three girls giggle.}

Erin  {picking up the Elmer’s Glue}  When I was a little kid, my mom used to say ‘Elmer’s Glue will mend anything…even a broken heart!’

Rose Carroll:  Well, if my heart ever gets broken, maybe I’ll give it a try.

Josie:  Your heart will never be broken, Rosie!

Rose Carroll:  Why not?

Josie:  Because you’re so nice.  Some guy will come along who will love you forever!

Erin:  Jose, you’ve been reading too many romance novels!

Rose Carroll:  But I do believe that love lasts forever, Erin…don’t you?

Erin  Yeah…if it’s real.  But how will we know the difference?

{The girls look at each other, none of them sure how to answer the question.  Enter Mrs. Carroll through the porch door.}

Erin and Josie:  Hi, Mrs. Carroll.

Mrs. Carroll:  Hi, girls.  Rose, did you talk to your dad before he left for work?

Rose Carroll:  No, mom, I didn’t see him.  What did he want to talk to me about?  He hasn’t volunteered me for something, I hope.

Mrs. Carroll:  Well, sweetie, I know you’ve been busy lately with your work at the hospital and your various activities, but your dad and I knew that you’d want to help…

Rose Carroll:  Mom, what did you and dad volunteer me for now?

Mrs. Carroll:  Honey, your dad thought you’d ENJOY helping Jason Grillo, our new neighbor, with his math.  He’s going to need a little tutoring this summer.

Rose Carroll:  {sarcastically}  Okay, mom, I get it.  Dad was only thinking of me.

Mrs. Carroll:  Now, Rosie, don’t get on your high horse.  This boy deserves our compassion.  He’s blind.

Rose Carroll:  {immediately sympathetic}  Blind?  Oh gosh!

Mrs. Carroll:  You will help him out, then, won’t you, honey?  They’re our neighbors, and Mrs. Grillo is very nice.  She lost her husband in the car accident that blinded Jason.

Erin:  That’s so tragic!  We’ll go visit Jason, too, Mrs. Carroll.

Josie:  Yeah, it’ll be nice for him to have some friends when school starts.

Mrs. Carroll:  Thank you, girls.  Rose…?

Rose Carroll:  Okay, I’ll tutor him.  But mom…do you think you could ask dad to check with me first before he volunteers me?

Mrs. Carroll:  {laughing}  You’d better ask him yourself, sweetie.

{Mrs. Carroll exits through the porch door.}

Erin:  Hey, let’s walk over to my house.  I want to show you the dress I got for the next block dance.

{The three girls gather up the origami materials, but they forget the glue and leave it on the porch.  They all exit stage right or left.}

Scene 4

{Rose Bentley, Carlie and Mimi enter.  Rose Bentley is dressed as a cheerleader and carrying a bouquet of flowers.}

Rose Bentley:  Honestly, I don’t know why Coach makes us practice in the summer.  It’s such a drag!

Carlie:  Rose, I’m getting angry!  Why won’t you tell us who sent you the flowers?

Rose Bentley:  Carlie, I told you, I don’t know.  You know how it is; someone is always giving me flowers.

{Rose Bentley tosses the flowers toward the back of the stage.}

Mimi:  Rose, you are SO popular!

Rose Bentley:  I don’t know why; I’m just an ordinary girl…

Carlie:  Ordinary!  You’re SO not ordinary!

Mimi:  Rose, you’re beautiful and…and…just so cool!

{Carter and Lincoln enter.  Lincoln is carrying a guitar.}

Rose Bentley:  {sarcastically}  Well, if it isn’t America’s newest pop craze!  Kids, here they are…the band you’ve been waiting for…the Presidents!

The Boys:  Hey Rose, hi Carlie, hi Mimi.

The Girls:  Hey guys, how’s it goin’?

Carter:  It’s going great!  We worked out our signature song.  Dad said we can have the concert in August just before school starts.  That’ll give us time to rehearse some more songs.

Rose Bentley:  Your signature song…?

Lincoln:  Yeah, Rose Carroll gave us a song she wrote.  It’s cool.  It’s gonna be our theme song.

Carlie:  Sing it for us!  Please?

Rose Bentley:  {sarcastically}  Yes, do sing it.  If Rose Carroll wrote it, it must be fahbulous…

Carter:  You’ll hear it at the concert.  So don’t forget to come.

{Enter Rose Carroll, Erin, and Josie.}

Josie:  Hi everyone!

Rose Bentley:  Well, if it isn’t the great composer herself and her faithful followers.

Rose Carroll:  {sarcastically}  Happy to see you too, Rose.  Hi, Carlie.  Hi, Mimi.  Hi guys.

Rose Bentley:  {in a phony sweet manner}  I hope all of you will pick up your scholarship applications this week.  I wouldn’t want any of you to lose out on the opportunity.

Erin:  Yeah, right!  Like anyone has a chance to win except you, Rose.

Rose Bentley:  Oh dear, I’m sorry you feel that way.  But if I am the best candidate, that won’t be my fault.  {to Carlie and Mimi}  Come on; let’s go find some good deeds to do.  I feel an attack of altruism coming on!

{Rose Bentley, Carlie, and Mimi exit laughing.}

Erin:  Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.  Ugh!  I hate the way Carlie and Mimi follow Rose B around like puppy-dogs!

Carter:  What is it with Rose B?  Her dad is the nicest guy in the world, and she can be such a…witch!

Lincoln:  Sometimes she’s okay, but she always gets nasty when Rose Carroll is around.

Josie:  That’s because she’s jealous of Rose!

Rose Carroll:  Why should she be jealous of me?  She’s the most popular girl in school.

Josie:  Because…because…she wants to be good…like you.  She wants people to admire her because she does volunteer work and stuff.

Erin:  I think Josie’s right!

Carter:  You’re on to something, Jose.

Lincoln:  Concur!

Rose Carroll:  Speaking of volunteer work, I’ve gotta get going.  I’m going to help Jason Grillo with his math this afternoon.

{They all exit, saying ‘see you’ and other appropriate comments.  Rose Carroll exits through her porch door and the others exit stage right or left.}

{Enter Rose Bentley, Carlie, and Mimi.  Rose Bentley is ahead of the others.  She is obviously thinking about something.  As she begins talking aloud to herself, Carlie and Mimi stop their own conversation and stare at her.}

Mimi:  Rose, what’s wrong?  Why are you, like, talking to yourself?

Rose Bentley:  {dramatically}  I was thinking about my dad.

Carlie:  Your dad?

Rose Bentley:  {her expression shows that she’s conning them}  Yes, it’s so sweet the way my dad encourages all the kids to do volunteer work.  And I feel like I let him down because I don’t do any.  But I’m so busy…

Mimi:  Of course you are!  It’s very hard work to be a cheerleader!

Carlie:  You’re so popular and everyone loves you so much.  You’re sure to win the Young Citizen Award!

Rose Bentley:  {obviously lying}  Oh, I don’t care about that.  I just wish there were some way to keep my dad happy without making myself exhausted.

Mimi:  My mom told me that the town needs people to pick up trash in the park.  Maybe you could do that.  We’re going to do it every Saturday morning, aren’t we, Carlie.

Carlie:  Yes, you could come with us.  We’d have a good time, and your dad would be happy.

Rose Bentley:  Oh, it sounds like such fun, but…but…I’ve got rehearsals every Saturday for the Miss Teen Pageant.

Mimi:  I thought those rehearsals didn’t start ‘til September.

Rose Bentley:  It’s a sort of pre-rehearsal.  It’s very important.

Mimi:  Oh…well, I’m sure your dad will understand.

Rose Bentley:  Mimi…Carlie…you could help me out if you wanted to.  I’d be very, very grateful, and I would certainly be your best friend forever.

Carlie:  Of course we’ll help you, if there’s something we can do.

Rose Bentley:  When you go to the park to pick up trash, every Saturday one of you could sign in as Rose Bentley.  That way, I’d get credit for doing volunteer work and my dad would be happy and stop nagging at me about it.

Mimi:  Oooh, isn’t that, like, against the law or something?

Rose Bentley:  Of course not, goof.  It’s not like you’d be getting paid.

Carlie:  But Rose, what if you get credit for picking up trash and you win the Young Citizen Award?

Rose Bentley:  {obviously lying}  I don’t care about the award.  But if I did win, I’d make a little speech about how I didn’t deserve it, and then I’d give it to someone else.  One of you…or that do-gooder Rose Carroll.  Or Carter; he serves meals to the homeless every Thanksgiving.

Carlie:  Well…if you promise to do that, I guess I could sign in as you at the park.  I mean, what could it hurt?

Mimi:  Yeah, I would too…as long as you wouldn’t keep the award if you won it.

Rose Bentley:  {hugging them}  You are the best friends a girl ever had!  Come on, let’s walk downtown and I’ll buy you an ice cream!

{They all exit.}

Scene 5

{Two small chairs should be placed on the Grillo porch for this scene.}

{Jason, wearing dark glasses, enters through his porch door.  He feels his way to a chair and sits down.}

{Rose Carroll enters from the Carroll porch door.  She is carrying two books.  She steps down from her porch, looks around, and sighs.  Then she resolutely walks to the other porch.  She sees Jason and slows down so that she will not alarm him.}

Rose Carroll:  Jason?  It’s Rose Carroll from next door.  Did your mom tell you I was coming over?

Jason:  Yes, she told me.

{Rose Carroll seats herself in the other chair.}

Rose Carroll:  So…do you want to study here on the porch or go inside?

Jason:  There’s no place on earth where I WANT to study mathematics.  But apparently I have no choice in the matter.

Rose Carroll:  {trying to make light of an awkward situation}  I feel that way about English!

Jason:  That is a statement that chills me.  You would choose to ignore all the great literature of the world?  As long as A squared plus B squared makes sense to you, you will be content?

{Rose Carroll looks at him, her face expressing her annoyance.}

Rose Carroll:  That is not exactly what I meant, but…whatever.  I told my mom I’d tutor you, and I only have a half-hour, so let’s get started.

Jason:  Ah…I see…I am a duty to be performed.  ‘Rose, go help the blind boy.  He can’t add two and two.’

Rose Carroll:  {instantly sorry for her thoughtless remark}  Jason…I’m sorry…that was a dumb thing for me to say.  Look, let’s just talk this time and get to know each other.  Next session, we’ll hit the books.  Deal?

Jason:  Certainly.  I’ll agree to anything that puts off the inevitable misery of algebra.  One talks of death and taxes, but algebra is another of life’s unavoidable plagues.

Rose Carroll:  Uh…right…

Jason:  Well, if we’re going to get to know each other, why don’t you ask me the question you want very much to ask.

Rose Carroll:  What question would that be?

Jason:  What it’s like to be blind.  That’s the question on everyone’s mind when they meet me.

Rose Carroll:  Okay, I’ll bite.  What’s it like to be blind?

Jason:  Dark…but light in a way.

Rose Carroll:  Light in a way?  What do you mean?

Jason:  When you can’t see, you hear things…and feel things.  For example, I always know when my mother is going to call my Aunt Lou because they don’t get along all that well, and when Mom picks up the phone to call Lou, her breathing changes.

Rose Carroll:  You can hear your mom breathing?

Jason:  Yes.  When she calls Aunt Lou, her breathing gets louder and faster.

Rose Carroll:  Can you hear me breathing?

Jason:  Yes.  Your breath is rapid.  You’re angry because you don’t want to be here.  But…but I sense that you’re unhappy about something else, some problem that you don’t know how to solve.

Rose Carroll:  Now what would make you think that?

Jason:  I’m not sure. Maybe the weight of your footsteps when you walked over here.  I can sense it somehow.  And another thing…I think you like math because numbers are much easier to deal with than people.

Rose Carroll:  Well,

Seeing Roses

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