The Broken Unicorn
Submitted by Guest Columnist on Wed, 03/28/2007 - 12:00am
Our resident doctor, Joseph Hecht takes a look at the plight of one of our Cubs heroes. ---------- I have an idea for a dramatic play. Synopsis: It’s about a dysfunctional family. The father ran off years ago, leaving two children and their mother, except for one postcard of Wrigley Field, the father has not been heard from since. The mother, Louise Penny, is from a genteel southern family and tells tales of her athletic youth and the many Royal and Yankee suitors who once pursued her. She is disappointed in her daughter, Kerry, who once was very athletic but now is fragile beyond recognition from recurring arm injuries and no longer draws any gentleman callers. The mother enrolls Kerry on a local baseball pitching staff hoping that her daughter will make her own and the family’s fortune through a pitching career. Louise discovers that Kerry’s crippling injuries kept her from making the team when she was discovered wandering aimlessly about the disabled list. Meanwhile, Kerry’s older brother, Larry Ro, is trapped in a thankless coaching job to support his mother and sister. During one of the many arguments between mother and son, Larry inadvertently breaks several of the glass trophies that are his sister Kerry’s prized possessions. Louise asks her son to keep an eye out for potential suitors for his sister. Louise gets her son to bring home a gentleman caller, Jim O’Hendry, an acquaintance that works with Larry. Gentleman Jim is kindly and some warm conversation draws Kerry out of her shell. Jim gives Kerry the nickname, “Texas Roses” a subtle twist on the name of Kerry’s medical condition, “Tendomyositis”. Jim reproaches Kerry for her low self-esteem but praises her former athletic uniqueness. They play long toss but Gentleman Jim inadvertently knocks over Kerry’s favorite “Unicorn” trophy, breaking off its horn. Kerry is forgiving, realizing that the unicorn is now a normal horse. Jim explains he has a “prior” commitment with another pitcher. Kerry offers Gentleman Jim the broken unicorn trophy as a souvenir. Mother Louise enters the room full of hope with this gentleman caller but soon turns on son Larry as the caller leaves. They argue with Louise having to protect fragile Kerry while Larry explains he was fired from his coaching job and is leaving his mother and sister behind. Years later, although Larry has traveled to distant ball clubs, he finds he is unable to shake the guilty memories of Kerry. Dr. Joseph Hecht gives his most sincere apologies to Tennessee Williams.