copyright © 2002 Lee Moyer

Testing 1 2 3

By Lee Moyer

Written & Performed 5/18/02

Cast (w/ intended players):

Principal Skinner (Greg Hays): Stern high school administrator. White male in his 50s

Miss Conway (Annaliese Moyer): A young teacher who tries too hard.

Jerome (Clinton Johnston): A 10 year old black student. Sits in the back. Smart and hip.

Robert (Lee Moyer): A 10 year old white student in front row. Smart and quite square.


Scene: An American classroom, a sign on the wall reads "Miss Conway - Grade 4". Skinner stands in the center of the room with his hand resting paternally on shoulder of Miss Conway (also standing). An experiment in testing methodology follows.

[Full Lights]

Skinner (addressing the audience): Good morning class. As you all probably know, the old "Standards of Learning" scores have fouled this school’s reputation and continue to threaten our funding for the future. With that in mind, and with Miss Conway’s blessing, [Conway winces] I’ve decided to try a little "experiment" in your class today.

Today we’ll be focusing on vocabulary, the building block of success in America.

Conway (whispers to Skinner): I must confess that I am skeptical about this exercise sir. [Conway sits down]

Skinner (ignoring her): So class, are we ready to begin? Good. What we need for this experiment is a young white male…

Robert raises his hand and waves it wildly to get Skinner’s attention.

Skinner: Very good young man. Robert is it?

Robert: Yes sir.

Skinner: And we need a young black male of the same age. Any volunteers?

NO volunteers, eh?

Miss Conway, will you please help select a counterpart for young Robert?

Conway (reluctantly): Jerome, would you please volunteer?

Jerome nods once solemnly.

Skinner: The first word is "Fat". Will you please tell us what that word means… Jerome.

Jerome (speaking coolly): Hip. You know. Like "What a totally phat show" or "that chick is phat, man"

Skinner(chagrined): Hmmm… Robert?

Robert (Mr. Smartypants): Obese, overweight.

Skinner: Very good Robert. The second word is "Cool". Jerome, will you please tell us what that word means?

Jerome (seeming more nervous now): Awesome, tasty, fresh, y’know… cool.

Skinner: I’m sorry son, but you can’t claim that a word means itself. That’s redundant and just plain silly. Robert?

Robert (Gloating a bit): Moderately cold. Chilled.

Skinner: Thank you Robert. The next word is "Class". Jerome?

Jerome (Speaking up energetically): I know this one.

Class is America’s caste system where the poor and disenfranchised are screwed out of their labor by rich folk who need another House in Palm Springs and a new paint job for their Lexus. The system where the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.

People always goin’ on about the Racism, but my mom says it’s Class that’s the biggest obstacle. Class keep people apart and allows the inequities that are the foundations of Capitalism to remain in place to benefit the few at the expense of the many. Class sucks.

Conway (smiling): Very good Jerome.

Skinner (ignoring Conway): I’m sorry son. I do so wish you’d pay more attention in "class". Robert?

Robert: A gathering of students- also a mark of high style or distinction

Skinner (to Miss Conway): I will never understand why the black kids always seem to fail at even the simplest standardized tests…



"Testing 1 2 3" debuted May 24, 2002, performed by Greg Hays, Annaliese Moyer, Clinton Johnston, Lee Moyer.

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