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Reasons to Love the Triangle in Three Acts


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A satire based on several true stories and some embellished ones

THE SCENE: A sunny Saturday morning in late summer. A woman arrives at her family's home, in a neighborhood where African-American, Latino, Japanese and white people of all ages live. It's within walking distance of downtown.

The woman carries a recycled shopping bag full of fresh, organic sweet corn, tomatoes and bell peppers, grown within a 25-mile radius.

She adjusts the "Vote Against Amendment One" yard sign, then enters the house, which rents for $800 a month, an absolute steal these days, even if the basement does leak.

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Her husband nurses a steaming cup of Counter Culture Coffee and munches on an almond croissant from Guglhupf, while listening to a Mount Moriah CD he has downloaded from iTunes.

Woman: "There was nowhere to sit at Cocoa Cinnamon, so I went to the farmers' market. It was very Portlandia. People with their dogs and strollers and guitars. Frank Stasio was there. That guy's everywhere. And I even saw a woman with a snake."

Husband: not looking up from his iPhone, on which he's playing solitaire: "Was she nursing a python?"

Someone knocks on the door

Woman: "If it's the Jehovah's Witnesses, show them our pentagram."

It's Kris, the couple's next-door neighbor, an adjunct professor at Duke with a doctorate in the History of Consciousness.

Husband: "Kris dropped off some vegan brownies. Are we going to her post-doc talk on animal rights and feminist theory?"

Woman: "I think it's at the same time that Guided by Voices are playing Hopscotch. No, wait, we're scheduled to go to an experimental film and then to the Pride parade that afternoon. And then the Monti at the ArtsCenter that evening, unless we go to the police protest. Tell her we're sorry. Maybe next time."

Husband, looking out the kitchen window: "That kid better not hit my car with his basketball."

Woman, preparing a bin of compost: "Did you see the drug dealers finally left the neighborhood? I saw a U-Haul in front of their house. Either that or it was the largest coke shipment in Durham history."

Later, the man and woman stroll around their neighborhood, waving at the elderly couple who lives around the corner. They greet a young couple who is running while pushing their twins in a stroller. A yellow lab runs with them.

As the sun sets, the woman and her husband pass by Django Haskins' house and hear him crooning a song from Old Ceremony's forthcoming album through an open window. The woman grasps her husband's hand and smiles at him.

That evening at Mateo Bar de Tapas, which is hot, packed and loud:

Husband: stabbing his patatas bravas: "Have you ever wondered if David Crabtree is a Republican?"

Woman, hoisting a Ponysaurus IPA: "Dammit, Frank Stasio is here."


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