(Phil is on the phone. He is walking back to his table from the toilet. Across the restaurant, at her table, Michelle is also talking on the phone. She isn’t making a sound and probably only the most eagle-eyed of audience members will notice it – Michelle should be as subtle as possible at her end (maybe even less animated than the rest of the restaurant). Phil on the other hand should be very animated to make sure the audience’s attention is on him. Phil and Michelle don’t realise that the other is in the restaurant.)
Phil Look, how often do I get to see the guys? One night is all I’m asking. One flippin’ night…..how can you be so unreasonable about this? You’re out at your mother’s. What difference does it make?....Oh for crying out loud the blinking cat can look after itself for one night…well I’ll do the shopping when I get back…Michelle…Michelle I’m begging you do not bring this up again. Don’t do it. Michelle I…Michelle? Hello? Michelle!?! (snapping his mobile shut. Through gritted teeth.) Grgh, that woman. (Takes a seat opposite Rosie). I can’t believe she can get so bent out of shape. All I’m asking is for one night out and she goes spare.
Rosie In fairness, you are out with another woman.
Phil (Thinks about it briefly) Yes but she doesn’t know that.
Rosie Ok well let’s forget about it now and just enjoy the meal.
Phil Right. Sorry. Of course. (Pause) Do you know the last thing she said to me on the phone?
Rosie (Getting fed up) What!?
Phil She told me I had to go and get some broccoli.
Rosie (Sarcastically) The cow!
(The waiter comes over and starts setting up the table around them. He is clearly taking his time so that he can listen in. Phil and Rosie are oblivious to this)
Phil Last week, the next door neighbours needed some broccoli, so I gave them ours. Well I didn’t know she was planning to use it for dinner that night did I? It was a simple mistake. But when she finds out – wow! – anyone would have thought I’d sold the kids.
Rosie (Shocked) You have kids?!
Phil What!? No. That’s not the point. The point is all hell breaks loose over one (suddenly has to stop to think. Uncertainly) bunch of broccoli?
Rosie Is it a sprig?
Phil No I don’t think so. Maybe it’s a tree of broccoli.
Rosie A portion of broccoli?
Waiter I think it’s a head. A head of broccoli. (Phil and Rosie look at him, realising he’s been listening. Awkward pause) I’ll go get your drinks.
Phil Anyway, the point is, she flies off the handle…
Rosie Phil, Phil, please! If this is going to work, you are going to have to stop talking about your wife.
Phil Right. I’m sorry. Sorry.
Rosie That’s alright. It just kinda takes the romance out of it that’s all.
Phil You’re right. I know. I know. (Pause) You know who’s excellent at sucking the romance out of a relationship?
Rosie Your wife?
Phil My wife. (Rosie puts her head on the table in despair. Phil doesn’t notice. The waiter comes back with the drinks.) The other week, she accused me of not being romantic. So, when she came back from work that evening, I had a bunch of chrysanthemums (her favourite flower) waiting on the lounge table. I had our favourite singer, Elton John, playing in the background and I had a beautiful romantic meal all laid out. (At this point, the waiter has placed the drinks and is just standing by the table listening) And do you know what she said to me?
Rosie (Still with her head on the table) Tell me. Please.
Phil She called me pathetic and told me to go to bed. And not even in a romantic, sexy, “I’ll be up in a minute” kind of way. No, she clears up all my hard work and… (noticing the waiter is just standing there, listening)
Waiter (Smiles, embarrassed) Enjoy your drinks (Quickly walks off).