SECRET LIFE OF HADDON MCKENZIE
Julies. HADDON and BEV are having cocktails.
BEV. Well I always see them together. I mean she seems pretty
HADDON. That just about says it, I think.
HADDON. Pretty Butt!
BEV. Haddon, you’re awful. I mean she seems like a nice
girl, but can she
HADDON. You said it.
BEV. Well if he’s in love with her --
HADDON. He thinks he’s in love with her.
BEV. He’s not really?
BEV. How do you know?
HADDON. When Mel finds someone, it will be someone much more substantial
BEV. Mel is very talented.
HADDON. More so than he knows. So tell me, what’s the big
BEV. Well I was thinking we should get to it before Ivor joins
us -- I don’t
want to talk about it in front of Ivor.
HADDON. What’s he doing?
BEV. Oh he’s buying some poetry book or something. His new
Brooke, I think.
HADDON. So, what is it, I’m all in suspense.
BEV. Well, Haddon, the thing is, I’ve met someone.
HADDON(slightly belated, not really happy) You have.
HADDON. How did you meet him?
BEV. Well I was very naughty the other night but I was sitting
in that little
house on Moore Street just going crazy, it’s such a dark
little house you know, can you tell me why they built all those
houses in the forties and fifties with those massive porches on
them? They don’t let in any light. All the houses in East
York are so dark. They didn’t do that in Buffalo. They don’t
have an porches in Buffalo.
HADDON. But Pete’s in Buffalo, isn’t he?
BEV. Yes, Pete. Haddon you know how to get right to the heart
of the matter.
Well, anyway, I was sitting in the livingroom and it was completely
dark, and I
don’t want to sit out on the porch because I don’t,
well I don’t want to get to know
the neighbours, after all, I don’t know how long we’ll
be living there so --
BEV. Yes, to make a long story short, I decided to go all on my
own, to the Imperial Room. I mean it’s crazy, but it was
Peggy Lee, and I just thought the Imperial Room is such a nice
place, I mean, surely it’s a place a woman could go to alone,
and then, why shouldn’t I go alone? Why shouldn’t
I? I wanted to hear Peggy Lee, do I have to wait for some man
to take me?
HADDON. I think you’re absolutely right, Bev.
BEV. I knew you would understand. I hope yo u don’t mind
me saying this, but
sometimes you think like a woman Haddon. (She notices his negative
And I don’t mean that in a bad way... I mean that in the
nicest way. I mean
you are a man, of course, and if I do say so, quite an attractive
that, I’m sure you’ll make some woman very happy --
and especially because
you think like a woman, you can sympathize with a woman you understand
she feels.That’s so rare in a man.
HADDON(wanting to change the subject) Anyway.
BEV. Anyway, there I was sitting at this little table, alone of
course, and there was a man sitting with some business friends,
at least they were all in suits, at this table right next to me,
and I was fumbling in my purse for a light and he just walked
over and lighted my cigarette.
BEV. Yes, that’s what I thought, well, and if he had been
unnattractive or creepy I would have said no thankyou, I have
a lighter, but there was something about him, I don’t know
how to describe him except to say that he’s such a man.
I mean some men are just such men. Do you know what I mean?
HADDON. I think so.
BEV. Anyway, he charmed me immediately, and he’s very funny,
he was a little
drunk I will admit, but we were in a bar, and one thing led to
another, and I don’t usually do things like this, but, I’m
a little ashamed, well I took him back to Moore
BEV. Do you disapprove?
BEV. You seem funny.
HADDON. Do I? Sorry. I’m just not feeling very well.
BEV. Oh. Are you feeling sick?
HADDON. Last night I had a bit of an argument with Mel about Cindy.
BEV. Oh, I see. That’s too bad. Well anyway, I took him
back, which is terrible
of me I know, I would never normally do that but suffice it to
say it was wonderful,
it was really wonderful, and a bit nerveracking because I think
Ivor might have got sight of us kissing, he was up, anyway, after
Matt, that’s his name, Matt, left. But I don’t think
that’s a bad thing, you know? I mean if this relationship
turns into something with Matt and I, Ivor will get to see what
to real adult people who are in love act like, I mean he didn’t
get to see that with his father and I mean, Pete -- I’ve
told you about Pete
HADDON. Yes, you’ve told me about Pete.
BEV. Well there weren’t any of those problems with Matt,
Matt was just fine. In
every way. I mean I don’t mind telling you, and I shouldn’t,
but I think you’ll understand that there are some men that
I would simply never give a blowjob to but then some men I certainly
would (HADDON slams down his fork) I hope you don’t mind
me saying that.
HADDON. Bev. I think that’s a little too personal. I don’t
really want to know
BEV. Oh. Do you disapprove?
HADDON. No, I don’t disapprove, it’s just...something
you shouldn’t tell me.
BEV. Oh, well I supppose you’re right. Anyway, there are
some problems with Matt which makes me feel I’ve been very
bad . And I want you to tell me, because you’re so smart
about these things.
HADDON. Tell you what.
BEV. Tell me if I should continue with Matt. I think this could
be serious, this could get very serious, You know how one can
tell when these things are serious, just by
-- well one can tell when one has...deep feelings.
BEV. Well the problem with Matt, is,-- nothing in bed, nothing
at all in bed --
but the problem is that he, well, he’s married, and not
only that but he’s
got six children, all boys apparently, and he’s a staunch
BEV. Yes, so --
HADDON. Did you have to weedle that information out of him?
BEV. No, it’s one of the first things he told me. I really
respected that about him actually. I mean it’s not like
I don’t know what I’m getting into. It would mean
the other woman. There’s something romantic about that of
course, but I also
something sort of seedy and depressing, or it could get depressing.
But then theres
Matt, I mean there’s just Matt. Do you know what it’s
like when -- well I’m sure you
do when you meet someone and they are just, well they are just
perfect for you and you have a feeling about them and it’s
just not a feeling you ever expect to have about anyone else,
and it just won’t go away?
HADDON. Yes, I think I know.
BEV. Yes, it’s called being in love. That’s what I
think -- is that I could fall in love with Matt. I think I may
actually be in love with him right now. And as I said, I think
it would be good for Ivor to have a real man as a role model.
HADDON(offended)As opposed to --
BEV. Oh not as opposed to you, no of course not Haddon, but of
course you’re his skating teacher, not his father, I mean
as opposed to Pete of course, who’s not very manly as far
as I’m concerned. I mean sometimes I worry Ivor is going
to develop problems in that department, because of his father.
I mean I tried to give him a little lesson in healthy sexuality,
did I tell you about that?
HADDON. No, I dn’t think so.
BEV. Well Haddon has a hamster named Seymour, he’s probably
told you about him, he loves that hamster very much, a little
too much as far as I’m concerned, but, anyway, one day I
decided to get a little female hamster as a companion so to speak
for Seymour, and she was a very pretty little hamster, we named
her Marmelade, don’t ask me why, I think because the pet
store owner where we bought her was British, there are so many
Brits in Toronto, I’ve really noticed, and they sort of
rritate me, sort of snobby, but that’s another story, anyway,
we brought this little female hamster home pretty little Marmelade,
and we waited til she was in heat, and then we put her into a
cage with Seymour and Ivor and I sat down in front of the cage,
and I thought this will be an ideal lesson where Ivor can learn
about human relationships, about love and sex and the whole thing,
and so there we are watching these two hamsters, I’m serious
and Marmelade -- well it was horrible to watch, truly terrifying
-- she started to attack poor little Seymour and she almost killed
him, I mean she was clawing at him biting him, she almost ate
him alive. So ultimately I suppose it wasn’t really a very
good lesson for Ivor, in well the facts of life, so I thought
that if I got a boyfriend, like Matt, who was a real man, then
Ivor might learn from the way we interacted, what a real adult,
romantic relationship was about. What do you think?
HADDON. Bev, I don’t think you should go into this relationship
to teach something
to Ivor. I think you should go into it because you are in love
with this guy--which, after all, you seem to be.
BEV. Oh Haddon, you’re so perceptive, that’s what
I love about you. You get right to the heart of the matter, and
part of the problem, like my therapist told me, is I always put
others before myself, and here I am putting Ivor before me, and
the relationship shouldn’t be about Ivor, this is one relationship
I should give to myself, it should be about me.
BEV. Well that’s great it makes me feel so much better.
HADDON. I’m glad.
BEV. Did you want to tell me something? Wasn’t it something
about you and Mel and Cindy.
HADDON. Well I was just going to say that --
BEV (IVOR appears) Oh look, Ivor is here. (whisper) Can it save
til later? (to Ivor) Adult talk. Secret adult talk darling, so
did you get your little book?
BEV. Who is Rupert Brooke, anyway?
IVOR. He’s my favorite poet.
BEV. Oh, and what did he write.
BEV. Don’t be sarcastic dear. What kind of poems.
BEV. Oh, what kind of sonnets.
IVOR. About love.
BEV(eyeing HADDON). Oh that’s nice. Haddon and I were just
talking about love, weren’t we Haddon?
HADDON. Yes, we were.
BEV. So sit down and we’ll order some dinner.
IVOR. I’m not hungry. (Pause, he looks at HADDON) Can I
go in the car and read
BEV. No, you have to eat something. You have another special lesson
tomorrow, where you’re going to start learning your ice
dancing. I think that’s sort of exciting.
BEV. Don’t you find it exciting?
BEV. Well actually honey, before we actually have dinner I have
to make a phone call (she winks at HADDON and mouths the word
“Matt”) so why don’t you two order some dinner,
I’ll have the veal cutlets and make sure to tell them to
give me some mint jelly to go along with it, I just love their
mint jelly. I’ll be back in a jiffy. (Pause, she runs off.
HADDON and IVOR are alone.)
IVOR. Do you want to look at my book?
HADDON. If you want me to.
IVOR. I just thought you might like to see it.
HADDON. I don’t particularly.
IVOR. Okay. It’s a very old book.
HADDON (disinterested) Oh.
IVOR.(another pause) I’m sort of excited about the lesson
HADDON(not enthusiastic). Good.
IVOR. Are you?
HADDON. I don’t get excited about lessons as a rule. (pause)
IVOR. Can I ask you something?
IVOR. Sometimes I get the feeling you don’t like teaching
me very much.
HADDON. Teaching is my job.
IVOR. That doesn’t really answer my question.
HADDON. Well maybe I don’t wish to answer your question.
IVOR. Why not.
HADDON. Because I don’t. (pause)
IVOR. Sometimes I think you don’t like me.
HADDON. You don’t have any idea what I think.
IVOR. That’s true. It’s hard to figure out what you’re
thinking. (Pause) My father wants me to go into the insurance
business with him. My mother says over my dead body. She’s
right. I don’t want to do that. I think I know what I want
to do though,
and it’s not figure skating. So you don’t have to
worry if you think I’m a lousy skater.
HADDON.I didn’t say you were a lousy skater.
IVOR. What did you say?
HADDON. I didn’t say anything. (pause)
IVOR. You see,I saw this great movie with Bing Crosby once called
Going My Way
and it’s all about a Catholic Priest --
HADDON. I’ve seen the movie about a hundred times.
IVOR. Well then you know about the scene where he gets all the
little immigrant boys together, all the rough kids from the neighborhood
and he teaches them to sing this song. Well when I was little
that scene really inspired me, and I tried to get all the neighborhood
boys together to sing a song together, which was nuts of course,
because none of them wanted to do it. My mother thought I was
crazy for trying to that, and the neighborhood kids thought I
was nuts too, and their mothers --
HADDON. Why are you telling me this?
IVOR. Just to make conversation. I don’t know. (pause) You
know sometimes you’re not very nice to me.
HADDON. I treat you the same as I treat all my students.
IVOR. Well anyway, the reason I’m telling you that is because
I didn’t want you to feel pressured or anything to teach
me, or to like me, or to make me into some sort of skating star,
or to learn how to be a fabulous jumper, because what I think
I want to do is something like what Bing Crosby did in Going My
Way, only I haven’t figured out a way to do it exactly.
HADDON. You want to teach rough little immigrant boys how to sing?
I don’t know if there’s much of a market for that
these days. (Pause)
IVOR(staring at him, coldly). Now that was nasty.
HADDON. I just don’t understand what you’re telling
IVOR. I think I want to write plays, write musicals maybe. Make
IVOR. I just wanted to tell you t hat.
HADDON. Well thanks for the information.
IVOR. No problem. (pause)
HADDON. It’s good to know you’ve got a plan, because
you jump like a ton of bricks.
(Pause. IVOR pulls his book out and starts to read it, turning
away from HADDON)
BEV(arriving). I decided I don’t want the veal. Did you
order already? Ivor, Haddon? Ivor, don’t read at the table.
HADDON. We haven’t ordered yet.
BEV. Good, I’ve decided I only want the veal if it’s
nice and tender. There’s something about sticking a knife
into the juicy flesh of a young calf, if I may be so graphic in
my descriptions. (Pause) Am I being too graphic?
END OF SCENE THREE: >> SCENE FOUR