We got into a little discussion of immigration at dinner tonight. After dinner, Alex was on fire to dictate this play to me. She started out assigning roles to family members, but quickly the dramatis personae got out of hand. Now she wants to start a drama club for the purpose of staging this masterpiece.
A play by Alex
SCENE I: At the docks. Scottish man gets out of the boat.
Scottish man: Hi, I’m looking for a place to live.
American: Well… that’s fine, if you’re our enemy’s enemy. We’ve got some land right over there. You may have to kill some Indians, but you can have it.
Scottish man: Great! Are there any mountains up there?
American: Yes, there’s a big chain of mountains just a couple hundred miles that way.
Scottish man: Great! I’m going to take my wife and children and be off!
Scottish woman: Say “thank you,” children!
Child: Thank you.
Narrator: And they moved into the mountains, which felt like their home because Scotland has lots of mountains.
SCENE II: At the docks, in 1850.
Irish person 1: Hi, we’re looking for a place to live.
Irish person 2: Yes, and it needs to be rather big. We have five children, and there are thirty more families.
American: All right, come along. There’s a rather large place that you could have that costs a thousand dollars.
Irish person 1: Oh, we can’t pay that much. Sorry.
Irish person 2: holds out six dollars. This is probably about half of what we have.
American: Oh my God! If all of you are really poor, and there are a lot of you, then we can’t get all of you into cheap places! There aren’t that many here!
Irish person 3 (from another family): Then why don’t you take the prices down on other houses?
American: Because we already have a lot of people who need houses. Goodbye!
Narrator: Several other ships carrying Irish immigrants have arrived, and now the guards who have brought them in are talking.
Guard 1: We can’t let any more immigrants in! They’ll fill up our whole country and take up all the cheap housing so there isn’t any more room for poor people!
Guard 2: Yeah, and they also want to use different traditions from their country!
Guard 3:Guys, soften up! Those immigrants have nowhere else to go. And people say better things about America than are really happening, so more and more people want to go.
Guard 1: Well, we’ll just have to stop them, then.
Guard 3: That would take ages, and the places they’ve already been living aren’t very good. I talked to some of the Irish people, and they say that there’s famine in their country.
Guard 4, who has been very quiet earlier: Guys, I heard that there’s going to be a new kind of immigrant coming. The Russians are coming! The Russian immigrants are coming!
Guards 1, 2, and 3: MORE immigrants?
SCENE IV: The Russians have arrived, and all of the immigrants, including the descendants of the Scottish immigrants, are in a big room having a talk.
Irish person 3 bursts in, saying: I just heard news! The guards are turning against us!
Irish child 1: Maybe if we put on a show with the children doing the Irish dance we know so well, maybe we can change their minds because we’re really great dancers!
Scottish child 1: I do some Scottish dancing, and so do my five best friends.
Russian child 1: I know some Russian dance, and so do my cousins.
Russian man 1: Great! You children could all put on a big show.
SCENE V: Still in the room, but it is five hours later – the time when the guards have planned to come. The Irish children are waiting in their best clothes, ready to dance.
Guards come in.
Irish child: They’re coming!
The Irish children rush out and begin doing Irish dance like they’re going out of style.
Narrator: It really fooled the guards! They were so surprised that they just fainted, and one of the more crafty Scottish people brainwashed them and made them think that the immigrants were good. Everyone lived happily ever after.