Catherine Léger

Artwork by Jiin Choi


Chicago. Today.


NADINE (late thirties): a new mother
CEDRIC (late thirties): a jock
DAMIEN (mid thirties): an intellectual, Cedric’s younger brother
AMY (twenty-two): the babysitter, looks like Scarlett Johansson



The living room, morning.

CEDRIC—Adidas pants and white t-shirtsits on the couch. On one side of him is NADINE, who just woke up. On the other side is DAMIEN, who just got back from Starbucks.

CEDRIC talks with NADINE and DAMIEN in alternation; when one speaks, the other one doesn’t exist anymore.

NADINE:  Fuck her right in the pussy?

CEDRIC:  It’s an expression.

NADINE:  Great.

CEDRIC:  Like . . .

(He searches. NADINE stares at him.)

CEDRIC:  I don’t know . . . Like a lot of expressions . . .

NADINE:  Like fuck her right in the pussy.

CEDRIC:  Exactly.

NADINE:  Were you drunk?

CEDRIC:  Not really.

NADINE:  What did you have?

CEDRIC:  Five six beers.

NADINE:  You were drunk.

CEDRIC:  I was at a football game with Turner and the guys from work.

NADINE:  And you knew you were on camera?

CEDRIC:  That’s the point, to say it on live TV. I would never say that to just anyone, with no context whatsoever: fuck her right in the pussy . . .

NADINE:  Of course not. That would be stupid.

CEDRIC:  It’s a stunt. It started in Cincinnati and went viral. In the UK, they stick vibrators in their ears.

NADINE:  Whose ears?

CEDRIC:  The journalists.

(Beat. NADINE doesn’t understand.)

CEDRIC:  I’m telling you, it’s funny.

DAMIEN (to CEDRIC):  I’m going to write about you in my next column.

CEDRIC (happy):  Really?

DAMIEN:  I’ll say that it’s a good thing you lost your job.

CEDRIC (disappointed):  I’ve only been suspended. But fine, you write what you want.

DAMIEN:  I’ll say that I approve of Ford’s decision.

CEDRIC:  Cool.

DAMIEN:  And at the end, I’ll reveal that you’re my brother.

CEDRIC:  As a punchline.

DAMIEN:  It’s the truth.

CEDRIC:  Because you’re so morally good, you don’t give a shit your brother lost his job. It’s the principle that matters.

DAMIEN:  As an American man, I’m proud that Ford is rejecting your sexism.

CEDRIC:  It was a joke!

DAMIEN:  Imagine that you’re talking to a guy, a huge guy. And someone looks at you and says to the guy: “Fuck him up the ass. Fuck him up the ass until he bleeds.”

CEDRIC:  You’re exaggerating.

DAMIEN:  That’s what you did.

CEDRIC:  “Until he bleeds.” Come on.

DAMIEN:  So, there are two kinds of rape for you? With blood is worse than without blood?

CEDRIC:  Who’s talking about rape?

DAMIEN:  You told the whole world to fuck a woman without her consent. That’s called rape.

CEDRIC:  It was a joke.

DAMIEN:  A rape joke.

CEDRIC:  A joke about saying something inappropriate on live TV . . .

DAMIEN:  You do know that one out of three women has been sexually assaulted, right? That’s thirty-three percent of women. Have you thought about them? Have you thought about Sophie?

CEDRIC:  Sophie! You guys split up like five years ago. You’ve had a million girlfriends since then.

DAMIEN:  So? Does that erase the fact that she was raped by her grandfather? Think about that. Think about the women who’ve been assaulted, who are always a little afraid, and for good reasons . . . You think they find rape jokes funny?


DAMIEN:  What about women who haven’t been assaulted but know the statistics . . . I mean, how funny would you find a joke about a guy ripping up your anus if you knew there was one chance out of three that it would happen?

CEDRIC:  Not funny.

(Beat. DAMIEN calms down.)

DAMIEN:  What did Nadine say?

CEDRIC:  Nothing.

DAMIEN:  She should dump you.

CEDRIC:  Now that would make a good column. “His wife dumps him. Good for her. And I’m saying that even if he’s my brother.”

DAMIEN:  You’re still making jokes.

CEDRIC:  What do you want me to do? Shoot myself in the head?

DAMIEN:  Between cutting back on the jokes and shooting yourself in the head, there’s a whole range of activities you could explore.

CEDRIC:  “He commits suicide. Well deserved. And I’m saying that even if he’s my brother.”

NADINE:  You should ask YouTube to take it down.

CEDRIC:  I don’t think I can.



NADINE (it’s obvious to her):  So as few people as possible see it.

CEDRIC:  But see, that’s where we disagree. I think the more people see it, the better.

NADINE:  “A Ford employee insults Lyndsay Petruny live.” You think it’s a good idea for people to see that?

CEDRIC:  The video’s been seen by two hundred thousand people in less than twenty-four hours. I’m not an expert but I’d say that means something. It’s significant.

NADINE:  I don’t think so.

CEDRIC:  Let’s see what happens.

NADINE:  Nothing’s going to happen.

CEDRIC:  Two hundred fucking thousand!

NADINE:  Maybe you’ll be invited on the Today show.

DAMIEN:  Honestly, you’ve always been sexist.

CEDRIC:  Whatever.

DAMIEN:  How many abortions have you had?

CEDRIC:  Stop talking to me like I’m a woman.

DAMIEN:  How many?

CEDRIC:  I’ve never had an abortion! I’ve gotten women pregnant who’ve had abortions. That’s different.

DAMIEN:  Tell me.

CEDRIC:  I don’t know . . . Five?

DAMIEN (laughing):  Sure, five.

CEDRIC:  What does that have to do with it anyway?

DAMIEN:  At least nine.

CEDRIC:  Come on, nine.

NADINE:  You seem proud.

CEDRIC:  Proud, no. Surprised, yes. Curious to see what’s going to happen.

NADINE:  Oh, so that’s it. In your head, you’re a star.

CEDRIC:  Well, a little.

DAMIEN (counting on his fingers):  Annabelle.
The short woman with big tits who always wore a Nirvana t-shirt.

CEDRIC:  Annika.

DAMIEN:  Annika.
The French woman, Solange.
The yoga teacher.

CEDRIC:  Seriously, she used to sleep with everyone. I’m not even sure I’m the one who—

DAMIEN:  She had the name of a yoga teacher.

CEDRIC:  Divine.

DAMIEN:  Bridget.

CEDRIC (to NADINE):  Imagine I said to you, honey, do something, put it on YouTube, and try to get 200,000 hits. Or not even 200,000, just 10,000. Just 1,000. I mean, I’m sorry but you couldn’t do it.

NADINE:  If I committed a murder live, I could.

CEDRIC:  Forget it. You’re doing it on purpose.

DAMIEN:  Veronica.
Your boss’s ex . . . Alexandra . . .

CEDRIC (he had forgotten):  Mm.

DAMIEN:  Lori.

CEDRIC:  That’s it. That gets us up to nine.

DAMIEN:  And Nadine, twice. That makes eleven.

CEDRIC:  Yeah, well, Nadine . . . We have a kid now.

NADINE:  Did you read the men’s comments?

(She takes out her iPhone to read the comments but has a hard time concentrating. She’s too taken by the conversation.)

CEDRIC:  Let me guess. Men find it funny and women are frustrated.

NADINE:  Women find it stupid.

CEDRIC:  Look, I know it wasn’t respectful but come on, it was a joke. You’re all being so PC about this.

NADINE:  “All?” Who is that?

CEDRIC:  All of you . . . Women. You. My boss at Ford.

NADINE:  Women are not the only ones who find it stupid. Men do too.

CEDRIC:  Then what’s the problem? Why are you asking me if I’ve read the men’s comments? Men think I’m stupid. Women think I’m stupid. Everyone thinks I’m stupid. Honestly, I don’t know what we’re talking about anymore. And I don’t see how Ford can fire me over a video! I mean, this is America. Hello? Freedom of speech?

NADINE:  Read the comments.

CEDRIC (to DAMIEN):  I’ve never forced a woman to do anything. I was always there, I always took a day off to go to the clinic, and I even paid the bills . . . The French woman had no health insurance so you can imagine. It cost me a fortune.

DAMIEN:  You could have just worn a condom.

CEDRIC:  I wore condoms.

DAMIEN:  Not those times.



CEDRIC:  I don’t know. Because they didn’t ask me!

DAMIEN:  And why didn’t they ask you?

CEDRIC (laughing):  I may be sexist but you’re a serious loser if what women think about when you fuck them is to ask you to put on a condom.

DAMIEN:  Look at you, you’re such a stud. You’re out of a job but you sure know how to fuck.

NADINE (reading her iPhone):  “I’d rather fuck her up the ass so I don’t have to look at her face.” (Scrolls down.) “It’s just a joke, you twit, relax.” (Keeps scrolling.) “You’re jealous because you’re ugly. No one would dare touch you with a ten-foot pole.”

DAMIEN:  You didn’t wear a condom because you don’t give a shit about women having to get abortions. And women don’t ask you to wear a condom because they don’t want to be annoying, and they don’t want to be annoying because the world is full of morons like you who constantly remind them how annoying they are when they harass a guy who just wants to have fun, watch the game in peace, make rape jokes, and fuck without a condom . . .

CEDRIC:  Yeah, well, I have a five-month-old now. So condom or no condom, there’s not much happening anyway.

NADINE (reading her iPhone):  “Enough with sexually frustrated feminists who turn hysterical because they can’t take a joke.”

DAMIEN:  That’s what I’m talking about.

NADINE:  “Ha, ha, have you seen her face? It’s clear the slut has never been fucked.”

DAMIEN:  You’re sex-deprived so you get drunk with the guys at a Bears game. You need it, it’s normal, you’re stressed. The baby, work, your wife . . .

NADINE:  “If you have no sense of humor, go fuck yourself.”

DAMIEN:  It feels good to go out. You’re having fun. You haven’t had that much fun in a long time and then what the fuck, you make a rape joke. Why not? No big deal, it’s a joke. But it feels good to get it out, to scream it at the top of your lungs even because it’s a joke . . . But at the same time, just between you and me, you’d love to stick it up a woman’s pussy, wouldn’t you? I mean, seriously. Any one of them, it doesn’t matter, you just want . . . the pressure to release. So you check out the women at Soldier Field, they’re like twenty years old, they’re partying, they reek of sex, and is it your fault if when you look at them you feel like fucking? They’re dressed so when you look at them you feel like fucking and I mean, there’s a limit to how much a guy can take! So if he makes an off color joke, we should give him a break. It’s a joke. No big deal. Consider yourselves lucky, it could have been a lot worse.

NADINE:  “They’re all whores anyway. LOL.”

(CEDRIC takes it in.)


The living room, night.

CEDRIC watches the video of himself, his face lit by the glow of his iPhone.

FEMALE SPORTS REPORTER (off-stage):  So we could expect the Bears to take a different approach tonight—

CEDRIC (off-stage, drunk, screaming):  “Fuck her right in the pussy!”

FEMALE SPORTS REPORTER (off-stage):  Sounds like some folks started partying early . . .

INTERVIEWEE (off-stage, overlapping):  Leave her alone.

CEDRIC (off-stage, from farther away):  Fuck her. Right. In the pussy.


(NADINE, sleepy, in a long t-shirt, crosses the living room. She goes to the kitchen.)

FEMALE SPORTS REPORTER (off-stage):  So we could expect the Bears to take a different approach tonight—

CEDRIC (off-stage, drunk, screaming):  “Fuck her right in the pussy!”

FEMALE SPORTS REPORTER (off-stage):  Sounds like some folks started partying early . . .

INTERVIEWEE (off-stage, overlapping):  Leave her alone.

CEDRIC (off-stage, from farther away):  Fuck her. Right. In the pussy.

FEMALE SPORTS REPORTER (off-stage):  Unbelievable.

FEMALE SPORTS REPORTER (off-stage):  So we could expect the Bears to take a different approach tonight—

CEDRIC (off-stage, drunk, screaming):  “Fuck her right in the pussy!”

FEMALE SPORTS REPORTER (off-stage):  Sounds like some people started partying early . . .

INTERVIEWEE (off-stage, overlapping):  Leave her alone.

CEDRIC (off-stage, from farther away):  Fuck her. Right. In the pussy.

FEMALE SPORTS REPORTER (off-stage):  Unbelievable.

(NADINE comes back from the kitchen with a glass of water.)

NADINE:  How many hits?

CEDRIC:  205,899.

NADINE:  It’s losing steam.

CEDRIC:  I talked to Turner. He says if I apologize publicly, the union may help.

NADINE:  Great.

CEDRIC:  Mm. (Beat.) Do you think I’m trying to sabotage myself?

NADINE:  You were drunk.

CEDRIC:  I wasn’t that drunk.

NADINE:  And there’s the mob mentality.

CEDRIC:  But unconsciously.

NADINE:  Why would you try to sabotage yourself?

CEDRIC:  I have no idea.

NADINE:  Well.

CEDRIC (proud):  Damien thinks that . . . that I might be a little . . . you know, sexist.

NADINE (doesn’t like DAMIEN):  Yes, that sounds exactly like Damien . . .

CEDRIC:  I don’t think I’m ready.

NADINE:  Ready for what?

CEDRIC:  To apologize.

NADINE (flabbergasted):  What?

CEDRIC:  I don’t even understand what happened.

NADINE:  Nothing happened. You just need to keep it simple: You did something stupid, you apologize, you go back to work, and it’s over.

CEDRIC:  I think I need time.

NADINE:  Time for what?

CEDRIC:  What am I going to tell Lea when she grows up?

NADINE:  Who cares? She’s five months old!

CEDRIC:  Yes, but in ten years. When she’s in school. When she’s the daughter of the guy who said “fuck her right in the pussy” to the entire country . . . What am I going to tell her?

NADINE:  In ten years, nobody will be talking about this anymore!

CEDRIC:  I just think it’s important I take time to think for once in my life.

NADINE (unable to hide her exasperation):  All you have to do is apologize! “I’m sorry. I was drunk.” Period.

CEDRIC:  It’s not that easy.

NADINE:  It’s very easy.

CEDRIC:  I just . . .

NADINE:  What?

CEDRIC:  I just want to take my time.

NADINE:  Fine. Whatever you want.

(She exits. Beat. CEDRIC doesn’t move, then goes back to his video.)

FEMALE SPORTS REPORTER (off-stage):  So we could expect the Bears to take a different approach tonight—

CEDRIC (off-stage, drunk, screaming):  “Fuck her right in the pussy!”

(The video blends into an audio or video montage of real excerpts from FUCK HER RIGHT IN THE PUSSY.)

translated from the French by Chantal Bilodeau

This translation was commissioned by Ohio Northern University.