HANGIN   4'2m1f Hopelessness vs perseverance

STEVE -- (Edges along front edge of stage in front of podium, 
looks down in horror, clings to podium as if he were on a ledge 
outside a building)

ETHEL -- (Opens window right of podium, shakes out dish towel, 
notices Steve, screams, runs around with arms flailing) Help! 
Burglar! Help! Robber! Help! Ralph, where are you?

RALPH -- (Looks up from newspaper) What is it now, Ethel? You're 
always so dramatic!

ETHEL -- There's a burglar on the ledge outside the window.

RALPH -- A burglar? On the tenth floor? Right.

ETHEL -- Well, look for yourself. He's out there. I just saw 

RALPH -- (Looks out the window) Oh, hi, Steve. My wife thought 
you were a burglar. It's not a burglar, Ethel. Come meet our new 
neighbor, Steve.

ETHEL -- (Cautiously approaches the window) How do you do?

STEVE -- Hi, nice to meet you.

RALPH -- Can I get back to my paper now? (steps back a few 
steps, reads)

ETHEL -- If you're not a burglar, Steve, what ARE you doing out 
on the ledge?

STEVE -- I'm going to jump.

ETHEL -- Oh, don't do that. We're ten stories up. You could hurt 

STEVE -- That's the idea.

ETHEL -- Ralph! Stop him! Ralph! He's going to jump!

RALPH -- (approaching) What is it now Ethel? You're always so 

ETHEL -- He's going to jump!

RALPH -- He's not going to jump. He could kill himself doing 

STEVE & ETHEL --  That's the idea. 

ETHEL -- Stop him, Ralph!

RALPH -- (Pokes his head out the window) You really going to 
jump, Steve?

STEVE -- I'm giving it careful consideration.

RALPH -- What is it? Did you get fired from your job?

STEVE -- No. I quit.

RALPH -- What did you do for a living?

STEVE -- I'm a lawyer.

RALPH -- Go ahead and jump.

ETHEL -- No! Ralph! Steve! Please don't jump! He was just 
kidding, weren't you, Ralph?

RALPH -- Right. Just kidding. (Reads newspaper)

ETHEL -- So, Steve, why do you want you end it all?

STEVE -- I only became a lawyer to please my parents. But I've 
always wanted to be a screen writer.

RALPH -- A screen writer, huh? Go ahead and....

ETHEL -- (covers Raplh's mouth) So, Steve, we still don't know 
why you want to jump.

STEVE -- Well, I sent writing samples to all the TV networks and 
movie studios. Finally, FOX called me and asked me to write a 
pilot for a sitcom. So, of course, I turned in my resignation to 
my law firm and moved out here to Hollywood. But now I've had 
writer's block for a month and no job. I can't even pay the 
rent. It's hopeless.

ETHEL -- Writer's block. Huh?

STEVE -- Yeah, I'm completely dry. I've been staring at my 
typewriter for a month.

ETHEL -- Are you a Christian, Steve?

STEVE -- I was real close to the Lord when I was in school, but 
when I started law school, I just drifted away from Him.

ETHEL -- Remember the story of Job, Steve?

STEVE -- Yeah. He lost his wealth, his family, his friends, 
everything. So?

ETHEL -- How did the story end?

STEVE -- He ended up with more wealth and happiness than before. 

ETHEL -- So.... help me out here, Ralph.

RALPH -- Remember the story of Jacob's youngest son, Joseph?

STEVE -- Yeah. His brothers sold him as a slave, then he spent a 
long time in jail for a crime he didn't commit.

RALPH -- And he ended up...

STEVE -- ...he ended up as the second most powerful man in 
Egypt. I suppose this is all leading somewhere?

RALPH -- What do Job and Joseph they have in common?

STEVE -- They both never stopped trusting in the Lord.

RALPH -- Even though it SEEMED hopeless, they hung in there.

STEVE -- Oh. So, you think I should just trust in the Lord and I 
can move back home and get my job back at the law firm?

RALPH -- Or the Lord might give you some ideas for your script.

STEVE -- You think so?

RALPH -- He did it for Joseph and Job, why wouldn't he do it for 

STEVE -- (looks up) Okay, Lord, you know I need to pay the rent. 
Help me, please. Help me to hang in there.

RALPH -- Please, Steve, come on in here, let's talk about it.

STEVE -- (Smiles, moves toward the window)
Oh, you don't have to talk me out of jumping anymore, Ralph. The 
Lord already gave me a great idea for a sitcom! It's about a 
guy who's standing on a ledge, about to jump, and is befriended 
by the old couple next door.

ETHEL -- Who you calling old?!

ETHEL -- Sorry. But isn't it great? When I put my trust in the 
Lord again, my waiting and worrying are over.

RALPH -- Do me a favor, would you, kid?

ETHEL -- Sure. Anything.

RALPH -- Don't tell anybody that I talked a lawyer out of jumping.

2013 Bob Snook. Conditions for use:
Do not sell any part of this script, even if you rewrite it.
Pay no royalties, even if you make money from performances.
You may reproduce and distribute this script freely,
but all copies must contain this copyright statement.  email: [email protected]