“Frozen in Time”


A Cautionary One-Act Play


for Subud members only


By Sahlan Diver


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Note to the reader


The following is a play script. It is not an article or story. It contains dialogue, designed to be spoken, and directions for acting and staging.  The best way to read a play script is by imagining it as an unfolding performance.


The author is currently writing a play for the commercial theatre about the behaviour of the members of a fading and little-known spiritual movement (not called Subud) who imagine, while they progressively lose touch with reality, that they have a divinely guaranteed destiny to save the world from itself.  This is not that play. This play in one act is purely for a Subud audience.


Cast (in order of appearance)


Susan Weston          - An office secretary.

Sister HailyMe         – A Subud member.  (pron. Hail- ee – Me )

Brother Joseph       – A Subud member. 

Doctor                   – A lady doctor.

Greg Taylor  


The Scene


A hospital doctor’s room furnished mid stage left with a large desk and two chairs, one at the front and one at the back of it. Behind the doctor’s desk, is a closed door, apparently to a connecting room.


Front stage right there is a sofa. Behind the sofa is a closed door apparently to a corridor. A chair is placed next to the door.


Back stage left is a privacy screen, over which are draped various items of a woman’s clothing, and also a fluffy pink over-garment. At the foot of the screen is placed a large, lady’s handbag.


On the back stage wall there is a large window looking out onto the sky. We see the tops of futuristic city buildings  (the room itself is on the top floor of a tall building).


The Time


The furniture and fittings in the room, the clothing worn by the people and the view out of the back window suggest a time in the distant future. The set and costume design is in an idiom characteristic of second-rate, sci-fi B movies of the 1950’s.


At Rise

(The stage is in darkness)


(Fade up sound of loud ticking oven-timer and background hum)


(After several seconds, fade up all stage lighting)


(We see stage right of the back window, two upright boxes with transparent sides and no doors. The boxes are labelled “Operation Box #1” and “Operation Box #2” One box is empty. In the other box SUSAN WESTON is held in by two straps. Although standing upright, she appears to be asleep. She is wearing a bikini. A beam of deep red light is continually scanning across her stomach area, making a curious humming noise as it does so. There is also the continuous sound of a very loud ticking oven-timer)


(HAILYME is sitting on the sofa, fidgeting with her handbag, waiting expectantly for something to happen. JOSEPH is standing by the window, looking out)


_ _ _


(JOSEPH stops looking out of the window and turns to look at Susan in the box)


JOSEPH                  (To HAILYME)  Do you know her?


HAILYME                 That’s Susan. She works in our office.


JOSEPH                  (Looking Susan up and down) I thought I recognised __the face. Anything serious?


HAILYME                 A large stomach tumour.


JOSEPH                  I see.  __ They can get that out in about what __ ?


HAILYME                 Ten minutes of hyper-frequency laser.


JOSEPH                  Not too bad then___ And she’ll be recovered and back to work__?


HAILYME                 They say at about a quarter to two. Just time for a coffee before the two o’clock meeting.


JOSEPH                  Amazing what they can achieve nowadays isn’t it?


HAILYME                 Yes, it’s only ten years since an operation like that meant you had to take the whole morning off work.


JOSEPH                  No doubt she’ll feel a little sore after the op.


HAILYME                 They’ll teleport her straight back to her desk.


JOSEPH                  It’s the best way. Expensive though.  Much cheaper by jet-pack. In fact is teleporting really necessary? (He points out of the window)  I mean, look there’s the Hyperion Tower. She’d fly straight off the hospital roof, jet round the tower and land at Smith Plaza. Hover-skate through the shopping mall and she’s there.


HAILYME                 She’s not paying. It’s all on the company health insurance.


JOSEPH                  Ah the good old, company insurance plan. Trust the company to give you all the benefits it can muster. In return they’ve got you for life. Got you by the balls, so to sp_

(He breaks off, seeing a look of disapproval on Hailyme’s face)    


Sorry I didn’t mean to be crude. Not the sort of expression you want to use in a hospital, is it?. I mean, of all places (Laughs) (HAILYME doesn’t share the joke)


(Awkward silence)


HAILYME                 (Brightly) This is all very exciting, Brother Joseph.


JOSEPH                  Yes indeed, Sister HailyMe. A unique opportunity. A heaven-sent opportunity, we might say.


                             (slight pause)


HAILYME                 I feel it must have been meant.


JOSEPH                  Yes, a sign that Soobood is finally ready to go out into the world. All those millenia of latiharn have finally paid off.


                             (slight pause)


HAILYME                 Do you think he knew BarPark?


JOSEPH                  Knew him personally, as a friend you mean, or just spoke with him once or twice?


HAILYME                 Either would be fantastic.


JOSEPH                  Yes, wouldn’t it?


(There is a sound from the adjoining room. HAILYME stands up expectantly)


(The noise stops and there is only silence from next door. HAILYME sits down again. JOSEPH sits down next to her)


JOSEPH                  Perhaps we’re hoping for too much.


HAILYME                 Hoping for _ ? Oh, you mean the “Opening Words” !


JOSEPH                  If only he could enlighten us. Having the right opening words will make all the difference to Soobood.


HAILYME                 Surely he’d know them off by heart? They would have been vital in the early days.


JOSEPH                  But suppose his memory has been damaged with the passing of time?


HAILYME                 Do you think he’ll be allright?


JOSEPH                  I hope so.    


HAILYME                 It’s incredible. Mankind has made discoveries our ancestors could only dream of, yet nobody so far has managed to achieve suspended animation.


JOSEPH                  Apart from Subud.


HAILYME                 Apart from Greg Taylor, you mean


JOSEPH                  Well, he is a Subud member.


HAILYME                 And the scientists said it couldn’t be done.


JOSEPH                  (Standing up) Scientists! So arrogant, thinking they know the meaning of everything. Lucky that we have testing, eh, so we know where everyone else goes astray?


(The LADY DOCTOR enters through the door behind her desk. JOSEPH sits down again, next to HAILYME)


HAILYME                 How is he doctor?


DOCTOR                 Are you asking me for an opinion on his physical condition?


HAILYME                 Yes.  Is he _ allright?


DOCTOR                 In my opinion, his physical health is remarkable, considering what he put himself through. Though I suppose anyone willing to undergo being deep-frozen like that needs to be made of pretty strong stuff.


JOSEPH                  And his mental health?


DOCTOR                 Mentally, I’d say he’s _


(The doctor is interrupted by a ringing sound, like an amplified oven-timer bell. The clockwork ticking and red light on the operating box stop at the same time)


DOCTOR                 Excuse me, one moment.


(The doctor walks over to the Operation Box and opens the door)


DOCTOR                 (Undoing the straps that hold Susan Weston in place) You’re all done now Ms. Weston. Just get dressed and you’re free to go.


SUSAN                    (Opening her eyes) Thank you doctor. Hello HailyMe. See you later at the office?


HAILYME                 Yes, Susan. (To JOSEPH) I’ll introduce you later.


(Susan goes behind the screen, and during the following conversation we see various items of her clothing disappearing over the top of the screen as she gets dressed)


JOSEPH                  (Discreetly) Does she know about Subud?


HAILYME                 (Discreetly) No. Be careful what you say. It might not be the right time for her yet.


DOCTOR                 (Returning to her desk) Now where were we? You were asking about the patient’s mental health.


JOSEPH                  Yes. He’s very important for us.


DOCTOR                 As you are obviously very important for him. We had great difficulty tracing you. After 6000 years we were sure it must have died out. Amazing how these ancient sects keep going. It’s the secrecy that protected it, I suppose, strange rituals behind closed doors and all that.


HAILYME                 I can assure you we’re not at all secret. Anyone can join. We don’t believe in propaganda, that’s all.


DOCTOR                 Are there many who practise your religion?


JOSEPH                  It’s not a religion.


HAILYME                 About five thousand, world-wide.


DOCTOR                 We thought it would help the patient’s mental condition to humour him, to be able to offer him something from his own time, if you follow me, so we’re very grateful to you “Subdued” people


HAILYME                 Soo-bood.


DOCTOR                 I beg your pardon?


HAILYME                 Soo-bood. It’s called Soo-bood. It’s actually a contraction of three Sanskrit words; Susila, which means right living according _


DOCTOR                 (Hurriedly interrupting) Quite. And the patient keeps on and on about the car park.  “Car park this” and “Car park that”.


JOSEPH                  I think he’s saying “BarPark”.


DOCTOR                 Do you? He speaks a very strange tongue. You may have difficulty understanding him. 


Maybe it’s best if I bring him in now.


I warn you, he’s wearing the primitive ancient costume and headgear that he had on when we defrosted him.  Please don’t show any surprise or alarm at his mode of dress. We don’t want to disturb the patient.


JOSEPH / HAILYME  (At the same time) Of course not, Doctor / We’ll be careful, we promise.


(The DOCTOR leaves the room. SUSAN, now fully dressed, emerges from behind the screen and leaves via the corridor door)


SUSAN                    (To HAILYME) See you later.


HAILYME                 Bye, Susan.


The DOCTOR returns with GREG TAYLOR, who is wearing 21st century shorts, open-necked shirt and large sun-hat. He is sun-tanned, smiling and relaxed)


GREG                     G’Day! (He’s an Australian)


DOCTOR                 Now, Mr Taylor, would you like to sit down here.


GREG                     (Sitting down) No worries!


DOCTOR                 Mr Taylor, we’ve already confirmed that you have arrived in the year eight thousand and twelve.


GREG                     Bonza!


(*In the following dialogue the Doctor’s repeated use of “yes” is a polite “yes”. She doesn’t understand what Greg Taylor is saying)


DOCTOR                 *Yes. I understand that was your intention when you froze yourself inside your most remarkable casket of ancient technology.


GREG                     Too right!


DOCTOR                 Yes. And we have left no stone unturned in finding for you two “Sub – ood” members to talk to, as you requested.


GREG                     Beaut!


DOCTOR                 Yes. This lady and gentleman here are they.


GREG                     This is a Subud hospital and you’re the managing directors?


JOSEPH                  Afraid not. We just work in the city.


GREG                     (Standing up) So you’re taking me to a Subud hospital.  (Noticing their hesitation) Problem? Where is it? Woop Woop?


HAILYME                 There are no Subud hospitals


GREG                     She did say this was the year eight thousand and twelve?


HAILYME                 Yes.


GREG                     So, what happened to the Subud hospitals Bapak talked about?


JOSEPH                  We’re still working on that idea. We do have an excellent Susila Dharma rep. Very good at handing out newsletters on latiharn nights.


GREG                     (Sitting down) I’m stonkered, mate.


DOCTOR                 I’d like to take notes of this interview, if you don’t mind.

                             (She takes a notepad and pen out of her desk drawer)


JOSEPH                  Of course, Doctor. Please go ahead. And if there is anything we can explain to you about Soobood, we’d be delighted.


DOCTOR                 It’s solely the patient I’m interested in. I have a duty to monitor his mental recovery.


GREG                     She’ll be apples. (Aus slang: means “it’ll be fine”)


DOCTOR                 Yes.


GREG                     I made this journey to the future because I wanted to live in a world that was under the guidance of the latihan. In my day, Subud was just starting out.


HAILYME                 We’re dying to ask you about the early days of Soobood. You see, all records have been lost.


GREG                     What happened to the archives?


HAILYME                 Very little survived the Great Catastrophe.              


GREG                     The Great Catastrophe?


DOCTOR                 (Looking up from her notes)


Mr. Taylor. We have prepared a number of charts to aid your orientation to the modern world.


(The DOCTOR pulls down the first of her wall charts, which shows a map of the world but with no landmasses below the Equator, apart from the South Pole – they have been replaced on the map by blue sea)


DOCTOR                 The archeological evidence indicates that an asteroid collided with Earth in the year 3010. It landed on a

large continent above the South Pole, just about here (She points to where Australia once was), wiping out  the entire southern hemisphere.


(The DOCTOR lets go of her wall chart. It has a strong spring and rolls itself up with a dramatic snap. Hint to props – use a domestic roller blind with a paper map stuck to it)


GREG                     Cripes!  What about books and written records?


JOSEPH                  All destroyed in the subsequent world-wide fire-storm.


GREG                     Computer records and magnetic tape?


JOSEPH                  All wiped by the great solar wind of 3052


GREG                     International helpers, handed-down the Subud traditions from their forbears?


HAILYME                 All drowned in the mega-tsumani of 4005


GREG                     Did nothing survive?


HAILYME                 A single copy of Barpark’s helpers’ handbook


GREG                     What happened to that?


JOSEPH                  An elderly lady helper lost it on the number 21 bus on the way to latiharn.


HAILYME                 So you see you are the only person on earth who knows how Soobood really was.


DOCTOR                 (Looking up again from her note taking) Talking of archaeology, I know a few professors who are itching to interview you, Mr Taylor. They’re hoping you can settle the Australis controversy.


(GREG looks puzzled. He goes to the wall and unrolls the map to look at it. He is upset by the absence of Australia)


HAILYME                 The mythical island of Australis


DOCTOR                 “Where maidens danced bare-chested, young men drank nectar, and it’s reputed you could hear the music of the Gods.”


JOSEPH                  No place like that could ever have existed, of course.


GREG                     Dunno. Sounds like our local bar on lapdance night. Not sure about the “music of the Gods”, though. The karaoke was always a bit on the naff side if you want my opinion.

(They look at him incomprehendingly)


DOCTOR                 (To HAILYME and JOSEPH) I’ll try to get an interpreter. It’s like no dialect known to modern man. Perhaps it’s the lost dialect of Shakespeare.


GREG                     (Letting go of the wall chart with a snap and returning to sit down again) So answer me this. Is it or is it not the “Golden Age”?


DOCTOR                 Well that’s extraordinary. How did you know this would be called the Golden Age. (Stands up and goes to the wall) Look! We’ve prepared a second wall chart. (Pulls down another chart)


DOCTOR                 Mr. Taylor, you lived in what we now refer to as “The Petroleum Age”


GREG                     As kiddies, we were taught about the Stone Age and the Bronze Age.


DOCTOR                 Yes, here we have them on the chart: Stone age, Bronze Age, Iron age, Petroleum age, Ignorant age and now Golden age.


GREG                     Our “petroleum age” was superseded by the “Ignorant age”?


DOCTOR                 Yes, the age of religious ignorance where the ignorant were manipulated by the spiritually proud to commit atrocities on a grand scale. Nearly wiped out the human race. Luckily the Great Catastrophe saw an end to that.

                             (She lets go of the wall chart and it curls up vigorously with a loud snap)


GREG                     So how come it’s now the Golden Age?


DOCTOR                 The World Council of Nations met and decided on drastic action. They decreed it was against the law to use religion for anything other than the good of mankind. You could be instantly put to death for implying your religion was superior to anyone else’s.


GREG                     A bit drastic, wasn’t it.


DOCTOR                 Not really. You see the death penalty was hardly ever actioned. Once people could no longer use religion as an excuse to hate each other, to commit bloodthirsty atrocities, to dress up and parade how pious they were, religion lost all its attraction, and more or less faded out. Instead, people just got on with the business of enjoying life. The result was world peace.  Religion had finally been disposed of, and a new golden age was ushered in.


GREG                     But I thought this was the golden age of Subud. Bapak said so in his talks. “In 6000 years there would be a golden age.” That’s why I froze myself.  I set the timer so I could wake up to meet it.


HAILYME                 (Discreetly to Greg) A Golden Age, but not The Golden Age of Soobood. We’re still being made ready.


JOSEPH                  And on that subject we’re very anxious to know the correct way to ready our applicants for their opening.


HAILYME                 (Rambling) Joseph and I feel that’s it all too casual. We just open people without letting them know what’s behind it all. If only we had Barpark’s original Opening Words, then people could get a proper introduction. I’m sorry to have to talk like this. I don’t like to be negative, because then members get easily discouraged and if you’re going to change the world it’s important not to get discouraged isn’t it?


  (start to fade up ticking timer noise)


JOSEPH                  You see nobody knows what the opening words are supposed to be and if you could tell us what to say we feel sure that Soobood would start to progress in leaps and bounds and _


(Ticking timer noise now faded to maximum volume and lighting now faded to blackout to suggest passage of time.


After a few seconds, fade out ticking, and fade up lights.


When the lights fade up GREG is sitting facing the DOCTOR at her desk and JOSEPH and HAILYME are front stage right, deep in thought. HAILYME is holding a notebook and pen)


DOCTOR                 _ and the government have awarded you a full monetary grant in recognition of your outstanding scientific achievement -- suspended animation.


GREG                     How do I find somewhere to live?


DOCTOR                 I’ve got some pictures and maps for you to look at. “Castle Park” is a very nice area _


GREG                     Mind if I take a Captain Cook?


DOCTOR                 Yes.


Why don’t you take a look? Come round to my side of the desk.


(GREG moves round to the DOCTOR’s side of the desk and he and the DOCTOR murmer away in conversation about the maps and pictures)


JOSEPH                  That was very difficult, wasn’t it?


HAILYME                 Very.


JOSEPH                  Do you think you got all the words?


HAILYME                 (Looking over her notebook) Yes, I do, but it was hard work.


JOSEPH                  All those questions about enterprise and hospitals and schools and concert halls and art galleries and why hadn’t Subud done this and why hadn’t Subud done that. A very impatient man.


HAILYME                 After all, what does he expect Subud to achieve in only 6000 years.


JOSEPH                  It’s just the blink of an eye in God’s master plan.


HAILYME                 People are always thinking they can go faster than the Almighty.


JOSEPH                  Never mind. We have our Opening Words. So, what to do with them? Contact the International Helpers?


DOCTOR                 __ And maybe when you’ve got used to living here, you will start to lose your accent.


GREG                     Lose my accent?! My accent is sacred !


(The DOCTOR and GREG continue their murmered conversation about the maps and pictures on the desk)


JOSEPH                  (TO HAILYME) Did you hear that? That’s it! He said his accent was sacred.


HAILYME                 It must be the received accent of the ancients.


JOSEPH                  The ancients were, of course, less influenced by the nafsu than we are in modern times.


HAILYME                 You’re right. That explains why Soobood hasn’t got anywhere. We’ve lost the ability to talk from our inner.


GREG                     (Loudly, to ALL) Anyone got some grog? I’m as dry as a dead dingo’s donger.


HAILYME                 I really feeeeeeel the latiharn when he talks like that.


JOSEPH                  Powerful stuff. 


DOCTOR                 O.K. We can take a break there, Mr Taylor. Because you have requested these Soob-Odd  people to look after you, I am temporarily releasing you to their hospitality. I suggest they take you to a restaurant, but first it’s necessary they fill in some forms. Would you mind waiting here while we go down to administration? _ Oh, I almost forgot, we have to take you down for a short press conference before you leave the building.


GREG                     I’ll give it a burl.


DOCTOR                 Yes.


(To JOSEPH and HAILYME) Please follow me.


(The DOCTOR, JOSEPH and HAILYME exit via the corridor door.


GREG goes to the window and stands looking out)


GREG                     (Moaning loudly) I want to go home!


                             (He turns and walks to the front of the stage)


                             But you can’t go home, me old cobber, me old Subud matey, so you’d better make the best of it.


                             If only we could have seen then how it would all turn out, we’d have been a lot less too bloody smug with ourselves, a lot less ready to give ourselves a pat on the back for our precious patience and sodding submission. Oh yes.


                             Enterprise! Tch! Don’t make me laugh. Best bloody enterprise Subud ever did was the “Don’t change a thing” enterprise. Maybe that’s what they should do – set up an enterprise to advise worthless managers on how to justify their existence. They’ve had enough bloody practise at it themselves.


Hindsight’s a wonderful thing.  It’s the law of evolution –- what survives, perpetuates itself –– Subud’s not bad, just mediocre, always has been. It ticks along, perpetuating its mediocrity, not bad enough to die out, not good enough to grow. The worse of it is the conceit – seeing God’s plan in total mediocrity.


I could do with a drink. After 6000 years, I really could do with a drink.


(SUSAN enters by the corridor door)


SUSAN                    (Knocking on the door and entering) Excuse me, Doctor, I left my handbag_ (She collects the handbag that is in front of the screen)


(Spotting GREG) Ooo! Hello! Aren’t you sun-tanned!


GREG                     My name’s Greg.


SUSAN                    And so rugged.


GREG                     Have you come to debrief me?


SUSAN                    Don’t tempt me.


My name’s Susan. You can call me Sue, when you’ve got to know me better.


GREG                     Fancy going for a drink, Sue?


SUSAN                    Calling me Sue already. Fast mover, aren’t you?  That makes two of us. (She opens her handbag and pulls out a large bottle of vodka)

                             We can go in there. (Indicates the door behind the doctor’s desk)


(GREG and SUSAN leave through door, closing it behind them.


Fade up ticking timer noise, and blackout lighting to suggest passage of time.


After a few seconds, fade out ticking, and fade up lights


Enter DOCTOR, JOSEPH and HAILYME from corridor door)


DOCTOR                 Thank you for you co-operation. Sorry about all the form filling. We have to know whom we are dealing with _

Where is he?


(A noise of drunken laughter is heard from the room behind the doctor’s desk. The door opens and GREG and SUE with their arms round each other tumble into the room, laughing. GREG is holding the bottle of vodka which is now nearly empty. Sue’s clothing is disarranged and she is showing a great deal of cleavage)


GREG                     We’re getting married.


SUSAN                    My name’s Sue.


And I’m joining Sue – bood

(SUSAN and GREG laugh drunkenly)


I’m very Sue – Sheila

(SUSAN and GREG laugh drunkenly)


GREG                     Too bloody right! You’re a Sue and you’re a “Sheila”.

(SUSAN and GREG laugh drunkenly)


Sue–Sheila Bloody Karma!


SUSAN                    Suuuueeee – per!

(SUSAN and GREG laugh drunkenly)


JOSEPH                  You’re drunk.


SUSAN                    Careful. That’s slander. I might Sue!

(SUSAN and GREG collapse in hysterical laughter)


DOCTOR                 I’ll give them a detox shot


(The DOCTOR produces a very large space-age gun and points it at GREG and SUSAN. The gun emits an intense beam of white light while making an electronic whirring noise. GREG and SUSAN are dazzled by the light. As soon as the light is switched off, they are immediately sober)


SUSAN                    (Hastily adjusting her dress and very embarrassed) I just came back for my handbag. Must be going. Two o’clock meeting. (She leaves hurriedly)


GREG                     (Dazed) What happened there?


DOCTOR                 A shot from the Sobering Gun, Mr. Taylor. In the Golden Age we have pacified the two major scourges of mankind – religious fanaticism and drunkenness. Now that you’re sober again, do you feel ready to meet the world’s press?


GREG                     I do.


DOCTOR                 Then I’ll take you over to the conference centre. Follow me. (To JOSEPH and HAILYME) You’re welcome to wait here till we return.


GREG                     See you later.

(The DOCTOR and GREG leave)

JOSEPH                  This is a disaster.


HAILYME                 I thought we were going to get a committed Soobood member, not a free-thinker.


JOSEPH                  We’ll have to head him off at the conference centre.


HAILYME                 Do you think he’ll agree to test his attitude?


JOSEPH                  Not while he’s in crisis.


HAILYME                 He’ll talk about Soobood!


JOSEPH                  Propaganda is not permitted. Barpark said so.


HAILYME                 He might say something bad about Soobood!


JOSEPH                  Bad propaganda is certainly not permitted!


May I use your video phone?


HAILYME                 Here it is.

(JOSEPH presses a button on the phone)


PHONE                   “International Helper Office”


JOSEPH                  (Talking face to face with the phone) Hello. We need a world latihan for a very sick man. It’s urgent. We’re coming over to see you now.


HAILYME                 Are we going there immediately?


JOSEPH                  Yes_  Wait! We’ve forgotten the “Opening Words”. We should give them to the International Helper Office. Let’s have a rehearsal to make sure we’ve got them right.


HAILYME                 Do we have time?


JOSEPH                  It won’t take long. This could be Soobood’s defining moment. I’ll be a person ready to be opened.


HAILYME                 OK. I’ll be the helper. Well, I am a helper (giggles). “Welcome to your first Soobood latiharn. Before I read you the Opening Words I must ask what your name is.”


JOSEPH                  It’s Joseph.


(slight pause)


HAILYME                 No, it can’t be Joseph, can it?


JOSEPH                  Why not?


HAILME                   Because I’m a woman. I wouldn’t be opening a man,

would I?


JOSEPH                  Wait! (He walks to the privacy screen over which there is draped a bright pink fluffy feminine robe. He puts on the robe over his clothes) Now I’m “Josepha”.


HAILYME                 O.K. Let’s start again. “Welcome to your first Soobood latiharn. Before I read you the Opening Words I must ask what your name is.”


JOSEPH                  (In imitation high female voice) I’m Josepha.


(slight pause)


HAILYME                 There’s still a problem.


JOSEPH                  What’s that?


HAILYME                 Joseph’s a Subud name, isn’t it?


JOSEPH                  Yes.


HAILYME                 So Josepha would be the female equivalent.


JOSEPH                  It’s a perfectly acceptable Subud name.


HAILYME                 Well how come she’s got a Subud name if she hasn’t been opened yet?


JOSEPH                  I see what you mean_ Call me Susan!


HAILYME                 Start again. __“Welcome to your first Soobood latiharn. Before I read you the Opening Words I must ask what your name is.”


JOSEPH                  (In imitation high female voice) I’m Susan.


HAILYME                 (Running round the room, waving her arms) Oooo-laa ! La! La! La! Weeeeeeeee !


JOSEPH                  What are you doing?


HAILYME                 I thought we were acting it out. I was pretending to be doing my clearing latiharn.


JOSEPH                  Perhaps you’d like me to pretend to be doing my nail varnish and fixing my lipstick while I’m waiting.


HAILYME                 You’re right. It wasn’t necessary. Let’s move on.


Joseph_ I mean Susan_ I will now read you the opening words. “Here’s_”


JOSEPH                  (Interrupting) You must use the sacred accent.


HAILYME                 I must?


JOSEPH                  You must. In fact, the whole of Soo-bood will want to talk like Greg Taylor once they’ve heard the sacred voice.


HAILYME                 I will now read you the opening words:


                             (Reading with a very strong Australian accent)


“Here’s the good oil. So that we don’t make a blue, with a bodgy opening, we ask is the lat your bowl of rice? You won’t come a gutser or be as cross as a frog in a sock. Remove watches and jewellery. You can keep your grundies on. Then it’s Begin and we do the Harold Holt. Mind your own bizzo, give it a fair go, and it’ll be good onya after thirty shakes of a possum’s behind, and Finish.”


(In her normal voice) I’m reading it, but I don’t understand a word of it.


JOSEPH                  Don’t you see? It’s perfect! If the applicant understood what we were saying, it could so easily lead to misunderstanding, but if the applicant doesn’t understand, they can’t misunderstand either. So later when they find out they didn’t understand but now they do understand that they were really worshipping Almighty God all along, then because we didn’t lead them to either understand or misunderstand, their understanding won’t have been disappointed, so they’ll have no excuse to leave Subud as a result of the misunderstanding. _ Do you understand?


HAILYME                 Yes. Perfect. BarPark’s Opening Words. Just like he said it was to be done. At last.


                             Greg Taylor!


JOSEPH                  To the international helpers, then to the press conference!


 (As they exit through the door) You know what I always thought was so important in Soobood?


HAILYME                 What?


JOSEPH                  That we don’t use the mind too much.


HAILYME                 (Strong Australian accent) That’s fair dinkum! Stands out like a shag on a rock!


(They exit, closing the door behind them)


(After a few seconds the door opens and the pink robe that Joseph was wearing is flung through it onto a nearby chair. The door closes again)


(Fade up sound of ticking alarm clock)


(Fade out stage lights)


(After a few seconds, the ticking stops)