ZECHARIA 4'2m1f John the Baptist's father is speechless

(scene: bare stage, except podium, two chairs)

FLOYD -- (Austrian Jewish accent, pinch-nose glasses, enters, 
crosses to podium, writes)

MADALINE -- (enters, stands near exit) Dr Floyd, Zechariah is 
here to see you.

FLOYD -- Oh, yes, you are referring to Zechariah, the priest who 
was found to be in a catatonic state at the temple nine months 
ago. Just give him the battery of personality assessment tests. 

MADALINE -- I've already done that, Doctor.

FLOYD -- Oh, vell, then show him in and bring his file.

MADALINE -- (exits, reenters with Zechariah, hands Floyd a file 

FLOYD -- (to Madaline) Thank you, Madaline, and please hold all my 
calls. This is a very serious case. 

MADALINE -- (nods, exits) Yes, Doctor.

FLOYD -- Zechariah, my name is Dr Sigmond Floyd. I am a 
Psychiatrist. Please lie down on the couch vhile I examine your 

ZECHARIAH -- (points at chair, sits)

FLOYD -- Very vell, just make yourself comfortable. (opens 
folder, sits) Alright, Zechariah, let's see vhat ve have here. I 
see, until nine months ago, you vorked as a priest at the 
temple. And that it vas vhile you vere burning incense in the 
Holy Place you became catatonic. And nine months of various 
treatments have been completely ineffective in regaining your 
ability to speak. (looks up) Just nod your head if you agree, 

ZECHARIAH -- (nods)

FLOYD -- Uh huh. Alright. (reads) Mmmmm. Uh hummm. Your 
personality assessments show that you have no apparent 
phobias, neuroses, or psychoses. So, perhaps you suffered an 
allergic reaction to the incense?

ZECHARIAH -- (shakes head) 

FLOYD -- No? Well, then, (hands Zechariah a pad of paper and pen 
from podium) if you have something you'd like to tell me, just 
write me a message with that paper und pen there. (looks over 
Z's shoulder)

ZECHARIAH -- (writes)

FLOYD -- What are you writing there? "I... was... visited... 
by... an... angel... of the... Lord." Uh huh.

(aside, writing in folder) Verrrrry interrrresting. Delusions of 
grandeur. I wonder why this disorder did not show up on the 
assessment tests.

ZECHARIAH -- (writes)

FLOYD -- (reads as Z writes) "The... angel... made... me... 
speechless... because... of... my... lack... of... faith." Uh 

These religious manifestations are the worst kind to deal with. 
They are very slow to respond to treatment.

ZECHARIAH -- (writes)

FLOYD -- "The angel... promised... that... my... wife... 
would... give... birth... to a... prophet... of God... on the... 
order... of... Elijah." Uh huh.

(aside, writing) Verrrry Interrrresting. Delusions of grandeur 
and delusions of persecution in the same individual. Say, this 
case could make me famous.

Zechariah, I don't want to alarm you, but there hasn't been a 
true prophet of God in 400 years since the prophet Isaiah. The 
likelihood that you had a true visitation from a spirit being 
is, to say the least, highly unlikely.

ZECHARIAH -- (writes)

FLOYD -- (reads) "The... messiah... will... be... born... 
just... after... my... son... is born.... He... is... a... 
relative... of... mine." Uh huh.

(aside) This confirms my diagnosis.

ZECHARIAH -- (writes)

FLOYD -- (reads) "Because... I... did... not... believe... the... 
angel... I... will... not... be... able... to... speak... 
until... my... baby... is... born...." Uh huh.

Zechariah, I need to help you on the road back to reality. First 
of all, the messiah is a manifestation of the Lord God Almighty. 
He will come down directly from Heaven. He will not be born like 
a common man. Any idiot knows that. And second, according to 
your file, your wife is over sixty years old. She is well beyond 
the age where she could bear children. It would take a miracle 
for her to....

ZECHARIAH -- (nods)

FLOYD -- Why are you nodding your head?

ZECHARIAH -- (writes) 

FLOYD -- (reads) "It... will... be... a... miracle."

Zechariah, you are living in a fantasy world. Your return to 
reality will require slightly more stringent treatment. (picks 
up a brown sock filled with foam rubber, whacks Z over the head)

MADALINE -- (enters) Excuse me, doctor. There's a telephone call 

FLOYD -- Madaline, I thought I told you to hold all my call. 
Now, where was I? (whacks Z again)

MADALINE -- Doctor this is important.

FLOYD -- Madaline, please, you are trying my patience. I am in 
the middle of some rather important reality therapy here. 
(whacks Z again)

MADALINE -- Zechariah's wife just had a baby?

FLOYD -- (about to strike again) I'm sorry. I thought you said 
Zechariah's wife just had a baby.

MADALINE -- That's correct, Doctor. That's what I said. (exits)

FLOYD -- Well, Zechariah, I guess that's enough therapy for 

ZECHARIAH -- (rubbing his head) His name is John. They will call 
him John the Baptist.

FLOYD -- Zechariah! You're talking! Well! It looks like my 
therapy worked! 

ZECHARIAH -- (gritting teeth and rolling up sleeves, growls) 

FLOYD -- (stands, backup away) Zechariah, are you angry about 

ZECHARIAH -- Angry? Yes, you might say I'm angry. (stands)

FLOYD -- (backing away) Why don't you sit back down. Let's 
talk about your hidden hostility.

ZECHARIAH -- (stands) I'll show you hostility, but it won't be 

FLOYD -- (shouts exiting) Madaline, cancel the rest of my
appointments. I'm gone for the day.

ZECHARIAH -- (stomps to exit, fists clenched) Oh, please doctor, 
don't leave. It's time for YOUR reality therapy.

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