While creating material for The Fifth Duck, each of the cast was asked to think of something that they could do to show off their talents. The original fourth member of the cast, Zara, couldn't think of anything and asked me to write her something. In the end she never even saw the script, as she kept taking unauthorised time off, and eventually decided she'd quit when I gently reprimanded her for deciding to go shopping in Manchester rather than come to rehearsals.
ZARA ENTERS as a primary school teacher
Zara Good morning class. I said, "good morning class". Thank you. Now, we've got a couple of new people here today, could you put your hands up? There you are, good. Which one's which? You are..? Peter, excellent, and you? Michael, good! My name is Miss Mallinson, and I am your class teacher. I will teaching you and everybody else in this room for the rest of the year - don't make that face Steven! - in all subjects. So that includes English, maths, science, geography, history, art - yes, art, Michael - and as the rest of us know, we've recently started Spanish, so you may have some catching up to do. What was that Lisa? No, Lisa, I heard you say something, what was it, dear? "Whores speak it"? However did you arrive at that conclusion? You saw it on the telly? I think whatever you saw on the telly that told you that was maybe a little too old for you, dear. Is that where you learned that word, too, the telly? What do you mean what word? The word you just used about people who speak Spanish. Yes, that one. And stop laughing David and Timothy, it's not a humourous subject! Where did you learn it, Lisa? Your daddy told you? I think I might have to have a word with your daddy next parents' night about who exactly the teacher is. Yes, Farook, what is it? "What are whores?" Oh, well - stop sniggering Timothy! - Whores are a vulgar term for ladies of the night. "What are they?" They are ... ladies of the night are women who do business at night-time, because it's less busy then. Yes, Rachel, like an all-night garage, only not quite. And I think that's quite enough talk about who- ladies of the night. Now - Abigail, I'm not out the window, dear - now, I'm sure you're all going to be nice to Peter and Michael, and make them feel welcome, aren't you? Yes you are Lucy. No, not that welcome. You don't need to go that far Lucy. No, Lucy, put him down! Thank you. Good, right, now it's upper-school assembly today, so we have to stay here and practice our silent reading, so Peter and Michael I'll take you to the library in a few minutes so you can find something to read, and then - Georgina? Don't do that. - Then you can join in with the silent reading. Now class, I expect you to be good while I'm taking Peter and Michael to the library. We'll be five minutes, and I don't expect to hear any noise when we come back, is that understood? I said, "is that understood?" David? It is? Good. Very well, everybody, books out. Come along you two.
© Brian Wakeling.