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(Lights up. An open market. The FISHMONGER peddles his wares.)

FISHMONGER (Calling): Fish! Fresh fish!!

(A FANCY LADY enters. She approaches the FISHMONGER.)

FANCY LADY: Do you have any squirrel?

FISHMONGER: I sell fish, madam. A squirrel is not a fish.

FANCY LADY: Tree Squirrel or Ground Squirrel, Red or Gray – it doesn’t matter which.

FISHMONGER: No, madam. Fish. I have fish.

FANCY LADY: But, I’m baking a pie.

FISHMONGER (Calling.): Fish! Fresh fish!!

FANCY LADY: I’m having company and I promised them a palatable squirrel pastry.

FISHMONGER: Fish, madam. I’ve got several nice fish. Halibut. Cod. Mackerel. But no squirrel.

FANCY LADY: No squirrel?

FISHMONGER: No. None.

FANCY LADY: This can’t be! I’ve made plans, I’ve made promises! The embarrassment, the humiliation, the shame! I’ve assured my friends a squirrel pie and now I’ll be a laughingstock. This can not be!

(The FANCY LADY breaks down in the FISHMONGER’s arms.)

FISHMONGER: There, there. It’s all right. I’ll tell you what, I’ve got a Prairie Dog and three nice chipmunks. Will those do?

FANCY LADY: I don’t know. They’re not squirrel.

FISHMONGER: Prairie dog taste almost the same as squirrel, add a little nutmeg and you could fool the Queen of England. The chipmunk flavor is a little closer to a marmalot, in my opinion, but your friends will never know the difference.

FANCY LADY: I’ll take them!

(The FISHMONGER wraps up the Prairie Dog and Chipmunks and gives them to the FANCY LADY.)

FANCY LADY: Thank you! You’ve saved my dinner party.

FISHMONGER: Think nothing of it. Just doing my job.

(The FANCY LADY exits. As soon as she is out of earshot, the FISHMONGER again peddles his wares.)

FISHMONGER (Calling.): Squirrel! Fresh Squirrel!!

(ANOTHER FANCY LADY enters and approaches the FISHMONGER.)

ANOTHER FANCY LADY: Do you have any fish?

FISHMONGER: I sell squirrel, madam. A fish is not a squirrel.

(Lights down.)

John Weagly has had over 50 plays produced by theaters around the world. He is an ensemble member at Raven Theatre Company in Chicago, Illinois. His website is http://www.johnweagly.com

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