An Addictive New Comedy
By Beth Kander
Jane, a neurotic waitress, needs to quit smoking. Her loved ones concur—so when she announces that she's quitting "for real," they’re supportive. In fact, they're a little too supportive. Each has a problem—from a looming divorce to a sexual crisis—and nobody wants to bring Jane any news that might lead her to quit quitting. With all these secrets floating around, who would suspect that Jane is keeping the biggest secret of all?
Bessie stands in her kitchen quietly making morning coffee. Jane, Bessie’s granddaughter, enters after working the night shift at the diner. Bessie nags Jane about her shortcomings. Jane, dodging, informs Bessie of her big decision to quit smoking—today.
Jane’s sister-in-law and best friend, Diane, enters without knocking. After Diane hears that Jane is going to quit smoking, she inquires as to why. Jane tells the ladies that she is involved with a man named Charles. He is a political organizer who comes into the diner often. When Diane realizes that Jane is serious about quitting, she collects all of Jane’s cigarette packs. Bessie heads out to go visit a friend as Jane attempts to catch up on sleep.
Diane begins to look through the fridge as her husband, Jane’s brother, James, enters. James asks Diane if she told his sister “the news.” Diane tells him that Jane quit smoking and that she didn’t want to burden her with such a big blow. “The news” is that James and Diane are getting a divorce. After an argument, Diane exits.
Just then, Charles knocks on the door with a clipboard. James assumes he is a solicitor and closes the door on him. He knocks again and James realizes that he is Jane’s Charles from the diner. He is extremely worked up and James tries to calm him down. Charles finally reveals the problem: he is gay. His experiences with Jane have only confirmed this.
Later, Diane enters, unseen by Bessie who is on the phone. Bessie is talking to her realtor and reveals that she is going to sell the house.
Jane wakes up and senses that something is awry as each of her loved ones comically attempt to keep their secrets. Eventually, Diane announces that her and James are separating, Bessie comes clean, telling Jane that she is selling the house, and Charles sees his window of opportunity and takes the moment to announce he is gay. They explain that they were secretive so that Jane wouldn’t take up smoking again. Jane explains she can’t smoke anymore because she is pregnant.
It is Jane’s birthday and she and Charles are sharing an apartment now. She is in her third trimester now.
Diane and James are still together. They have been in couples therapy. Charles reveals to James that, despite his sexuality, he is going to ask Jane to marry him.
Bessie enters and announces she took the bus (she is nearly deaf and shouldn’t be driving), but James sees her car parked in the driveway so he steals her car keys and tells Charles to park the car at his house. Jane is suddenly in a lot of pain and James convinces her that they need to go to the hospital.
Diane comes in as Bessie notices that her car is gone. She calls the police to report the stolen vehicle. Charles enters and tries to stop Bessie. A car pulls up, Jane’s pain went away and she convinced James to take her back home. As everyone yells and urges Jane to go to the hospital, she kicks them all out of her kitchen.
Diane pokes her head back in. Jane tells her that she doesn’t want to live with Charles anymore. She also mentions that she might want to go to school, and get a new job. Charles barges in and asks Jane to marry him and she turns him down.
Suddenly, Diane is in pain and James rushes to her side. It seems there is one secret left in this group! Diane is also pregnant and now having contractions. They all begin to leave as the police show up regarding the stolen car, which James explains is not stolen. As they finally make it through the door, Jane has a contraction. Two babies on the same day! All might just turn out well for this crazy, but loving family.