Alice Packer’s Shadow
Location: S&M Art Studios, Ltd.
Alice Packer: Art Director
Walter Davidson: Senior Vice President
Harry Heckler: Computer Graphics Designer
Sheri Sands: Head Photographer
Susan Sockwith: Fashion Director
Angela Songerson: Human Resources Director
[It was time for lunch. Walter Davidson is about to adjourn the regular Monday staff meeting. Alice Packer had seemed distracted throughout the meeting. She suddenly proceeds to laugh hysterically]
ANGELA SONGERSON: Good heavens! Alice, get a grip. What’s so funny? What are you laughing about?
ALICE PACKER: I’m laughing because I saw my shadow this morning at Raven’s Nest. [She bursts into tears. Angela, stupefied, blinking characteristically, leans over and hugs Alice.]
ANGELA SONGERSON: Holy Moses, Alice, I’m sorry. What are you talking about? [ She continues to bat her eyelashes.]
ALICE PACKER: My shadow is dying to be me and she’s been shadowing me for weeks now. So I go into Raven’s Nest Cafe this morning for coffee and a bagel, and there she is, standing in line right in front of me, chit chatting with people, pretending to be me…”
ANGELA SONGERSON: Pretending to be you?”
ALICE PACKER [angrily brushing away her tears]: Yes, trying to look like a professional art director without even giving me credit. Professional liar, that’s what that hussy really is.
HARRY HECKLER [snickering]: Now, now, sweetheart, you’re just imagining…
ANGELA SONGERSON: Lay off, Harry, and if you say sweetheart one more time I’ll file a harassment complaint. Go on, Alice.
WALTER DAVIDSON: This staff meeting is adjourned. [to Alice, jokingly.] When you said you saw your shadow, I thought you meant you needed a shave. I saw my beard this morning…[Nobody pays attention to him – everyone is gathered around Alice Packer]
ALICE PACKER: I was livid. I tapped her on the back and asked her for her name. “Moana,” she said. I looked the lying hussy up and down, and said, “I don’t know how long you’ve been lurking around the art business, Moana, but you should get a real life. The only person you’re fooling is yourself. You don’t even know what an art director is. Quit being such a wannabe.” Well, she doesn’t say a word, reaches into her fake leather briefcase, takes out and hands me a copy of her portfolio, picks up her coffee and struts out as if her tail doesn’t stink just because men stare at it. So I look at the trash she gave me – it’s a cheap knock-off of my own portfolio, she copied all my ideas!
ANGELA SONGERSON: Even your bio’s are alike?
ALICE PACKER: Absolutely. And my logo too!
ANGELA SONGERSON [blinking furiously]: I feel for you, Angela, that’s really scary. There’s gotta be something you can do? That is outrageous. Oh, let me give you another hug… [Alice backs away.]
SUSAN SOCKWITH [nodding her head sagely]: I know her. She used to shadow me when I was shopping on Fifth Avenue. I’d see her reflected in the window, wearing the same dress as me. Moana is the worst nightmare a woman can have. She will copy your every gesture for years. Just keep in mind that everything this person says is a lie. Would you believe she started taking Qi Gong classes when I did? – there she was, trying to mirror my every move.
SHERI SANDS: I’ve seen her too. She is a pretty but pathetic young woman.
WALTER DAVIDSON: I think I know your shadow too. Some forger was using my name and style at several studios. I filed suit and got an injunction.
SHERI SANDS: Well done! That’ll teach them!
HARRY HECKLER: C’mon, Walter, we know what was up with that. You signed your name to blank sheets, gave them to your students and forgot about it, for crying out loud!
ANGELA SONGERSON:[grasping Alice’s hand.] She’s not worth thinking about any more, Alice. Frankly, she’s a human leech. The best thing one can do with her is ignore her and smack her down when she comes around. There’s nothing she can do, really. She’s just your shadow and can never be an true art director like you. Come now, let’s have a long lunch together – Walter won’t mind – it’s on me. [all file out of the meeting room except Walter, who stays behind to write up the Minutes.]