One Day in the Life of a Child Care Worker – a short play by Philip Rose, aged 12

The scene: a consulting room in a psychiatric hospital. The room is quite small, and is furnished with three comfy chairs placed around a small table. The walls are painted in pleasant, fresh pastel colours, and there are a couple of inspirational posters on the wall. One of them has the words ‘You are beautiful’ at the top of a photo of a stunningly attractive super model, who would probably scratch out the phrase ‘You are’ and replace it with ‘I am’; the other has ‘Live in the now’ and a picture of a hugely healthy young man mountaineering in the Swiss Alps, untroubled by thoughts of paying the next bill, because his trust fund sorts that out.

In the three chairs are:

Norm Twitt, a middle-aged man some might call handsome. He has a  low I.Q. and, for some bizarre reason known only to the playwright, speaks like a hillbilly and says ‘Dun diddly’ a lot.

Next to him is his estranged wife, Carol Twitt. She has a look about her of someone who has been hit full in the face by a comedy fake frying pan, and has yet to recover her composure.

And there is the child care worker, known as Phil. All three are discussing the problems they had with the Twitt daughter, Amanda.

Act One

Phil: Now, at what point did you notice that Amanda might have been going astray?

Norm: Dun diddly what now? She’s gonna be an ashtray? Wut now wibble?

Carol: I’m a great mom.

Phil: Errr..maybe I didn’t phrase that question correctly. When did you start noticing your daughter perhaps needed assistance?’

Norm: Dun diddly wut now? Wut’s a sistance?

Carol: I’m a great mom

Act Two

Half an hour later. Phil has loosened his tie and looks slightly perplexed, Carol looks like a rabbit caught in the headlights and Norm is scratching his crotch.

Phil: So when you first realised that Amanda was exposing herself online, what measures did you take to prevent this?

Norm: Well, I dun diddly bought her a new state-of-the-art laptop equipped with the best webcam money could buy, gave her a microphone and some stage lighting, then told her to go to her room and not come out until she’d gotten 1000 likes on her Facebook page.

Carol: I’m a great mom.

Phil: So you made no attempt to get her away from the Internet?

Norm: Inter-wut-now? We’d done already discussed all that. She told me she was never gonna get on the Internet ever again so help me God cross my heart and hope to die. She’d told me that each of the 100 times we’d caught her dun diddlin’ herself on webcam, so I trusted her.

Carol: I’m a great mom.

Phil: If I may, Carol, I would like to address a few questions just to you. What steps did you consider taking to maybe help your daughter lose her Internet addiction?

Carol: Well, Phil, as you know, I’m a great mom, though modesty forbids me from ever saying that out loud. I tried to find new hobbies for Amanda.

Phil: And those were…?

Carol: Well, gettin’ her drunk was the first idea I had, using my insights not only as a great mom, but also as one of the world’s best educators. I figured that if she was too drunk to even walk, it might stop her from gettin’ on webcam. LOL

Phil: Did it work?

Carol: Well, as a great mom, a great educator, and one of the best philosophers since Plato, I can tell you that my brave daughter didn’t let a thing like drunken unconsciousness come between her and her webcam. No sirreee bob!

Phil: So did you try anything more?

Carol: As you know, Phil, as a great mom, a great educator, a great philosopher, and as I’ve written in my new book ‘How to make money from parental failure’, I wasn’t going to let anything stop me from helping my daughter get away from the dangerous path she was on.

Phil: So you found her a new hobby?

Carol: Yes, Phil – marijuana. Mary Jane. Good old weed. I figured that if she was too drunk AND too high to raise a finger, that would keep her away from webcam activities. And remember this – I wanted my daughter to have a singing career, and ten spliffs a day never did Bob Marley any harm, so there. And I say that as the greatest mom in the whole world.

Phil: And you thought that smoking marijuana was a wise move?

Carol: Hell, yeah. ‘Cept it didn’t work, though. Geez, my daughter was a tough one – she even went on YouTube high as a kite and having a blaze. But so what – it wasn’t like she was a highly vulnerable child now, was it?

Phil: So, after the failure of drink and drugs, did you in any way think of something more fulfilling for your daughter?

Carol: Sure did, Phil. Do you take me for a fool, what with me being the best mom in the world, the best educator, the best philosopher, a sure-fire Nobel Peace Prize winner and future President of the World?

Phil (looking like he was not going to like the answer): And what was that?

Carol: Well, Phil. I can tell from the 17 degrees that you have, and from your 30 years experience in child care, and from the fact that you only have three grown daughters of your own who are currently at Harvard, Princeton, and Yale, that you have NO idea about parenting. I opted for the only choice I had left after drink and drugs – S E X – SEX. With my innate intuition as world’s best mom, I knew that if she was drunk, drugged, or having sex, then no way could she keep that Internet addiction going. I think that deserves a double LOL, Phil, I really do.

Act Three

An hour later. Phil now looks distinctly frazzled. He is smoking a cigarette and there’s half a bottle of Jack Daniels on the table. Carol is looking smug; Norm is half asleep.

Phil: So, I’ve just read the coroner’s report, and it looks like they’ve introduced a new category – ‘Death due to parental incompetence’. What do you have to say to that?

Norm: Dun diddly!

Carol: I’m a great mom.

The End

4 thoughts on “One Day in the Life of a Child Care Worker – a short play by Philip Rose, aged 12

  1. “these writings are that of crazy man who is obsessed with the Todd family, he has no life of his own, this man gets crazier by the day.”
    It’s funny how you described him as a man who is obsessed with the Todd family and has no life of his own.. I would get crazier by the day if I heard about a child committing suicide for making a stupid mistake and then getting judged by her peers and society up until this day. You think obsessing about her family is wrong? what about those who attacked Amanda? What are you doing to prevent another teen suicide? Teen abuse? Sexual content there openly to teens? Pedophiles online? Tell us, Linda.. what are you doing? Enlighten us..
    If Philip is a “twit” (not twit), you’d have to know because you sound like the mother of all twits.

    • I came here because I saw an e-mail from a “Linda” who complained that you omitted a chair for yourself as a patient. She obviously missed the bit about the child care worker named Phil. It seems Noory already tore into her, though. Since my comment is a reply to Linda, I wonder how or if mine will show up.

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