Playwriting Contest

Rufus F.

Rufus is a likeable curmudgeon. He has a PhD in History, sang for a decade in a punk band, and recently moved to NYC after nearly two decades in Canada. He wrote the book "The Paris Bureau" from Dio Press (2021).

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26 Responses

  1. Jaybird says:

    Heartwarming? Will there be a moral?Report

    • Rufus F. in reply to Jaybird says:

      Heavens no! Actually, the moral is that the zealous crusader politicians end up doing a lot more damage than the rum-soaked, skirt chasing rascals. For the character, think Mayor Daley meets Groucho.Report

  2. Patrick Cahalan says:

    It has to involve “the children”Report

    • See, my first thought was a mob-run elementary school.Report

    • Perhaps only obliquely… if, for example, he wanted to make the streets safer for our children, he could “clean up the Red Light District!” and, somehow, end up running a brothel out of the Mayor’s Mansion.

      You can hang jokes about sex off that, make well-worn jokes about the difference between prostitutes and politicians, have salacious outfits (hey, it’ll put butts in the seats), and if you find a guy who looks vaguely like Harper, you can put him in lingerie.


  3. Tod Kelly says:

    Will this be a dark screwball comedy?Report

    • Rufus F. in reply to Tod Kelly says:

      A bit cynical for sure. But the sorts of jokes I write tend to be like what Bob Hope would have rejected as too corny.Report

      • Tod Kelly in reply to Rufus F. says:

        Here’s what is probably a clunker – but to just get the ball rolling:

        Viewed as anti-poor and an animal hater for various mishaps stated early, he starts a program to pair animals from the pound with homeless people – puppies and kittens get homes and are saved from being put down, homeless get a free thing that loves them, and teaches them the inherent lessons or responsibility and bootstraps one learns when taking care of something you love.

        The press has a field day as many animal inflicted injuries become almost epidemic, the city’s emergent rooms are filled with homeless people with ringworm, fleas and tics, and PETA discovers that some of the animals are being used as food.Report

  4. Rufus F. says:

    Incidentally, so far my favorite suggestion came from my friend Pretty Joe who proposed the politician could embrace his bad boy image with a rock’n’roll greaser makeover. Think Newt in a black leather jacket or Steve Martin in Little Shoppe of Horrors. I found that one pretty funny.Report

  5. Dan Miller says:

    Ideas include:

    1.  Obligatory monorail reference

    2.  Free ponies for everyone!Report

  6. Will Truman says:

    One to throw out there:

    Mayor decides to be the champion of the local artist. He demands that local radio stations play local musicians 20% of the time. The problem is that there is no thriving music community, just a one-hit-wonder. So the radio stations keep playing that song over and over again until everyone hates it. Recognizing the problem, the mayor tries to get musicians to move to the town, so that their songs can be played on the radio, so that he can be the champion of the local musician.Report

  7. BlaiseP says:

    This isn’t quite so ridiculous.   The mayor’s trying to get a riverboat gambling license.   He gets involved with some Vegas shysters through his equally small-town bookie who act as his advisors.   They proceed to scam him out of some serious dough.

    The thing practically writes itself thereafter.Report

  8. wardsmith says:

    Mayor decides to evict peaceable, tax paying, law abiding citizens from their waterfront property in favor of feckless corporation who wants waterfront offices for their overpaid under-worked executives. The fight goes all the way to the Supreme Court and citizens lose. Tax revenue producing buildings are torn down, feckless corporation bails and town is left with an empty lot.

    Nah, no one would believe that.Report

    • wardsmith in reply to wardsmith says:

      Realized it wasn’t funny enough, so decided the mayor needs to setup a meth lab on the property (pictured below) to recoup the missing $1.2M per year they’re not getting and also to recoup the $78 Million they spent tearing the existing houses down. Hilarity ensues when they find out just how explosive lithium can be and we’re not talking about hiz honor’s meds..Report

  9. Sam M says:

    Oil and gas development is hardly every funny. But to get out the deep stuff you have to do a lot of fracking.

    It’s a funny word.

    Starts out innocent enough. Agrees to have the wastelands on the edge of town fracked. Loses money in a bad investment. Fracks the graveyard. The elementary school. The convent.

    Bonus comedy from various references to laying pipelines.Report

  10. Sam M says:

    Also… it’s plausible.Report

  11. MFarmer says:

    Since the economy is down, there is high unemployment and homelessness. The Mayor wants to show the people how progressive he is by designing a committee of homeless men and women, chosen by lottery, to come up with ideas to solve the town’s problems with homelessness — he wants to show how the homeless understand the problem from their experiences and how he values their input. The Mayor expects the committee to be for show, then he will manufucture some small recommendations from the group and promise to implement them if possible. The committee comes up with unexpectedly good solutions, but the Mayor suddenly finds himself in the quandary of implementing solutions he’s uncomfortable with and somewhat intimidated by the committee. One particular homeless person who became its natural leader, begins taking the committee’s responsibilities seriously and thus begins the battle with the Mayor, as the homeless leader of the committee begins enlisting the support of the townspeople and eventually running for Mayor and winning.Report

  12. Jaybird says:

    You people are the least funny people I have ever been delighted to know.Report