Hopping Dingos Cricket Club, by david jarvis may 2022.

Act 3 Scene 1.

We see a tall black athletic man perched in his late model 4 door ute, elbow on the open window whilst parked off road in a sunny spot with a river nearby.

“Look mate, you are the worlds best all rounder and the media loves you, the people love you, please for their sake do some more media promotions.” Is heard coming loud from the smart phone in the large soft hands.

“Nah man, I just want to go fishing, camping, hunting and play cricket, leave me in peace. I need the peace of the outback to be at my best on the cricket field.” Says the black athlete.

“For fucks sake, come to the press conference tomorrow, it’s written into your contract. You can’t just leave the team in this mess you’ve made. ” Comes out of the smart phone very loudly.

person holding gray twist pen and white printer paper on brown wooden table
Signed Contract : Photo by Cytonn Photography on Pexels.com

The black athlete winces and snorts a bit and holds the phone a bit further away from his ear whilst saying,

“Contract, mate I didn’t even read that 600 page document, the business dude told me I’d just have to play cricket and be the best i can be and to sign here to receive that massive cheque. So i did.”

“Rakali, look, you’ve punched a member of parliament, that’s going to hit the morning papers on the front page of every publisher in the country.”

“He fucking kissed me, he reeked of booze and invaded my personal space. I’d do the same thing again. Tell that prick to stay the fuck away from me.”

He presses the phone screen and puts the phone in the glove box. Gets out of the ute and wanders over to a camping set up that has two fishing rods with lines in a medium sized aussie river, a couple of chairs and looks like a decent camp site.

The world is silent, a bit of noise, but that quiet noise is actually letting the audience know this man is at one with the peace of the bush.

person in hiking boots on hammock
Camping : Photo by Taryn Elliott on Pexels.com

He checks the lines, prods the small fires a couple of times and sits between them on the chair and looks around smiling, shrugs his shoulders a little and tilts his hat down a bit and closes his eyes. He settles into the seat clearly intending to go to sleep.

Act 3, Scene 2.

The room is packed with journalists talking, there is a small stage and up on that stage are three people, all men. One man is standing at the lecturn and begins to speak.

a group of people taking notes in a conference room
Press conference : Photo by Pavel Danilyuk on Pexels.com

“Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen, and members of the publishing media, thank you for attending this press conference, we will be starting the formal presentation in one minute, please take your seats.”

“About time.” “Get on with it.” “Come on, hurry up.” are three statements from random people that are heard over the bustle of the room.

The first man steps away from the lecturn and another man in a clearly expensive suit strides to the position.

“Thank you members of the press for coming to our conference. First of all i would like to draw your attention to yesterdays victory over the english in the twenty twenty match at radelaide oval. Our national team played magnificently to overcome an early collapse and some outstanding bowling from young graham botham whom took four wickets in the opening four overs.”

A heckler shouts out. “His name is graaa heee mee.”

The speakers face reveals a smile and joviality in a microflash, but the speaker recovers and continues onwards.

“The Australian twenty twenty cricket team want to thank the sponsors for their generous donation to the after party party and organising the big jazz band Small Birds, to put on a show for us all. I can see a few bleary eyes amongst you, so I am confident the members of the press enjoyed their time with the playing group last night.”

A different heckler speaks loudly. “Nice one mate, small jazz by big bird.”

The crowd guffaws at the remark, but this time the speakers face remains placid.

“We are grateful the team captain is available for questions this morning and invite you all to welcome Mr Dick Pontoon to the podium.” The executive begins clapping his hands and steps away from the lecturn whilst the third man walks over to the central position.

“G’day everyone, that was a cracker of a match last night wasn’t it?” Dick opens with.

A larger woman sitting in the third row speaks up in that gap of time just after the word “it”.

“Tell us what happened with Rakali, Dick, why’d he go apeshit at the party last night?”

“Thank you for the question Emma. After scoring a magnificent 66 runs in only 8 overs and scoring the winning runs in a manner not seen previously in cricketing history, Rakali was jubilient with his performance. In psychological terminology he was over aroused and coming down from a rather significant high at the after party party last night and is completely ok today.”

“How is Sammy Neil?” presses Emma with a follow up question.

“Thank you for the follow up question Emma. I have been informed by a hopping dingo representative whom has spoken with the honourable Sammy O’Neill, that though he has a small facial injury, he informs that no permanent damage was done during the incident. Cricket Australia will of course be conducting an investigation into the matter.”

“Why’d Rakali punch Sammy in the face?”

“The reasons for the incident have not yet been fully discovered. We are however confident that both individuals are safe and well at this time.”

“bullshit”, “that’s a joke”, “get on with it”, are heard as the crowd gets a little louder.

“Dick, can you please tell us what Sammy said to upset Rakali?”

“Thank you, but at this time I am unable to present that information to the public. The matter is under investigation, and I am sure that all parties concerned want to get on with their work for today.”

“Dick, mate, I was there, Sammy was drunk as a skunk and grabbed Rakali in a bear hug and kissed him!” States a fit looking guy in athletic gear, wearing a member of the press badge on his chest.

Dick is looking directly at Don in a friendly manner and it is clear these two know each other.

“G’day Don, all I can really say is that when cooler temperaments prevail, I am sure the parties concerned will release their own statements about the matter for the press. In the mean time, Cricket Australia on behalf of the Hopping Dingoes and all concerned parties will continue with the investigation. There are no further statements from Cricket Australia today on this matter, thank you for your efforts to report last nights victory. Have a good day.”

The three cricket australia representatives all walk single file off the stage and the scene fades out with the athletic journalist being the final face we see. He is quizzically considering the situation whilst the rest of the room is either packing up to leave or talking. The audience can see the name on the badge, Don Hardman.

Act 3, Scene 3.

The Honourable member for Kavel, Sammy O’Neill, is sitting at his expensive desk and the audience can see his shiner is over his left eye. A female secretary is sitting opposite him at the desk taking short hand notes whilst Sammy speaks at her.

“Whilst attending the after party party of the twenty twenty match on 15th May 1022, I was assaulted by the hopping dingos player, Rakali. That individual struck me in the head in an uprovoked incident after I congratulated him for his brilliant performance. I will be seeking full redress from the justice system and have reported the matter to south australian police. As a member of parliament I have certain responsibilities to protect, and rights to be protected in the public and expect that representatives of our great nation act in appropriate ways. The doctors whom attended me after the incident have initiated concussion recovery procedures and told me to take a few days off work. As I am unable to attend the latest session of parliament, my votes for that day, on the matters presented will therefore be absent. I hope that my absence does not unduly influence the outcome of the critical matters of the day.”

“How’s that sound Martha?” asks Sammy.

“Pretty good sir, maybe shorten south australian police to sapol instead, and rephrase doctors to medical service providers, if you are inclined Mr O’Neill.”

“Leave south australian police in, but change the doctors bit. I’ve got a cracking headache. I want some time alone now, cancel everything before lunch thanks.”

The secretary’s face is blank as she stands silently up to leave, turns around and leaves the room, quietly shutting the door.

When the door shuts, Sammy grabs something off his desk and throws it across the room against a wall, then picks up an iced gel pack off his desk and holds it against his black eye. He bows over his desk, cradeling his head in both hands and we see his shoulders and chest heaving with deep breathing.

Act 3, Scene 4.

Sammy’s secretary is sitting at her desk with a sandwhich wrapper and lunch box in front of her. A fruitbox drink has a straw in it and she is dantilily chewing. Two men walk into the foyer office space which is visible past the desktop that Martha is sitting at. The foyer has a different woman at the higher desktop, a receptionist whom speaks to the two men.

“Good afternoon gentlemen, what can I do for you?” She states pleasantly.

“We’re here for our 1 pm appointment with Mr O’Neill.” the younger man says.

Both men are dressed in black suits, one with a purple tie, the older with a silver tie.

“Thanks, may I ask your names?”

“We are representatives from the transport gig workers union. John Smith and Peter Jones.”

“Yes I see the appointment is scheduled for one pm, I’ll just let the Member know you have arrived.” She turns around and walks through to the executive secretary’s space.

“Martha, the transport gig workers union are here for their one o’clock.”

“Thanks Heather.”

Martha covers her mouth as she talks with a bit of food in it. She swallows the food carefully, and buzzes the intercom, stating,

“Mr O’Neill, your one o’clock is here.”

There is no reply. Martha picks up her sandwhich and continues to eat. The scene goes back to the main foyer.

Heather speaks to the appointees.

“Mr O’Neill will see you shortly, please make yourselves comfortable.”

The gentlemen continue standing, and are both tall and firm looking, almost military in their stance, arms at their sides, feet shoulder width apart and they do not engage with chit chat with themselves.

A bike courier in a sky blue uniform pushes open the door and strides quickly over to the reception counter, puts a small envelop on the counter top towards Heather and holds out clipboard asking perfunctorily,

“Please sign and print here thanks.”

Heather takes the clipboard and signs it, then takes the envelop whilst the bike courier leaves the foyer.

In the background the audience sees Martha getting up and moving towards the Parliamentarians office door. She knocks on the closed door and receives no reply. Martha opens the door a fraction and speaks into the room.

“Mr O’Neill, you’re one oclock is here, are you feeling well enough to see them?”

There is no reply, so Martha steps into the room further opening the door to do so. The audience sees Sammy slumped over his desk and a small pool of vomit around his head.

Martha takes a step back outside and shouts out loud.

“Heather! Call an ambulance right fucking now.”

Showing alarm on her face, Heather reaches for the office telephone and calls triple zero.

The two gentle men look at each other and the older man speaks firmly.

“Let us in, we can help.”

Heather just presses a button on her desktop and the audience can hear the loud click of the secure door being electronically unlocked. The two men immediately walk past the counter foyer, through the unlocked door and into the more secluded rear room. They proceed across the small space into the private office and discover Martha moving Sammy’s head from the pool of vomit, she is being careful and has her ear to Sammy’s mouth, and is clearly listening for breathing. Sammy is still sitting at his desk unconscious, but now he is being held upright.

“Thank christ, he’s still breathing. Give me a hand will you guys.”

The two transport gig workers union representatives pick up the member for parliament and under direction of Martha they lay him down on the floor into a coma position. Martha takes out her hankerchief and wipes away some vomit that is on Sammy’s face.

Sammy remains unresponsive, and another bit of regurgitation comes out of his mouth.

The older male cradels Sammy’s head pointing the mouth downwards and the vomit flows onto the floor. The younger male is on the telephone to triple zero.

“ambulance” he states briskly.

Heather walks into the room and says,

“The ambulance is on the way Martha, what’s happened?”

“It’s Sammy, something is wrong with him, he’s unconscious and vomiting.”

“Oh shit, I’ll get out the front to point the paramedics inside quickly.”

“Sounds good, do that.” Martha says carefully.

The younger male states, “32 Gawler street Mount Woofer.”

We hear over the TWGU younger representatives telephone on loudspeaker,

“An ambulance is already tasked to attend that scene, please describe what’s happening.”

“We have an unresponsive forty year old male whom is vomiting, we’ve put him into a coma position on the floor of his office. He is still breathing, but we are concerned about the vomiting obstructing his airway.”

“Good work sir, that sounds like the right thing to do, is their any signs of danger around yourself?”

“No, it’s an office.”

“Thank you, the ambulance is on its way and should be there in 4 minutes. Keep the man in the coma position and check his mouth for obstructions.”

“How do I do that?”

“Open his jaw with one hand on his chin, and put your finger inside his mouth with your other hand, feel around in there.”

The younger man sighs and shows a look of disgust on his face. The older man hears the instructions, takes a deep breath and does as instructed, using one hand to old the mouth open and the other hands’ fingers to feel around in there.

More vomit comes out of the mouth, spilling onto the cuff of the mans suit.

“Oh yuck.” he states.

The younger man speaks into the phone.

“The male has vomited again over my friends hand whilst his finger was in the mouth. What do we do?” He speaks quickly into his phone that is on loudspeaker.

“Ok, the ambulance is only two minutes away. Tilt the patients head downwards a bit, keep holding that mouth open slightly, the vomit has probably cleared out any obstructions, so you don’t need to put your fingers back in the mouth. Just tilt the head downwards a bit, but keep the airway clear. Is the patient still breathing?”

The older man takes another deep breath, and puts his ear towards Sammy’s mouth.

“I can’t hear any breathing.” says the older man.

The younger man repeats that to the phone. “We can’t hear any breathing.”

Over the phone, the telephonist speaks.

“Wet the back of your hand and hold that near to his mouth and nose, can you feel any air coming out?”

The older man licks his hand, he gags a little as he licks the back of his hand, then with concern on his face being relieved whilst his hand is held near to the mouth and nose, he smiles and states.

“Yes, I can feel cool air.”

“Great news says the telephonist, the ambulance has arrived, they’re coming inside now.”

The paramedics come into the room quickly but calmly taking over the scene.

The two representatives look at each other and stepping backwards, they take a few deep breaths. Martha sits down in the leather couch and puts her hand over her mouth and sobs a bit. The scene fades out with the final view the green uniformed back of the paramedic concealing the face of the member of parliament.

woman in green dress sitting on a chair while in deep thoughts
Stressed and sitting in Chair : Photo by Thirdman on Pexels.com

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