‘Gonnae tell me that you speak for the neds of the world against the lefty elite? Pish!’ … Scott Reid as Chummy Photograph: PR Company Handout
Ext. night: a suitably grubby alley near George Square, Glasgow. Large skips, wet cobbles, rain. We are facing a young man – close. He looks perhaps dangerous, too poor to be clever, wild, sharp, thin, fast.
Chummy: Haw. Nightmare, eh? You and me, eyeball to eyeball. How very dare I. What’s next? Fisticuffs? Swearing? Fae me? Faraging swearing? Use the words for love tae insult you? My names for joyful tenderness inside yer hed? Naw. (Beat) Are you feart?
Or are you not absolutely aware of my meaning?
Back to Glaswegian and he moves on – we back away as he advances, along the alley. He dodges about as we go…
Course you dinnae know what I’m talking about, you’re not me. And you think empathy’s optional.
Dae ye? Are ye an actual, factual full-on Nigel, a roasting big Donald bawbag? Gonnae tell me that you speak for the neds of the world against the lefty elite? (Beat) Pish.
Ma Gran wis as old as Thatcher when she died. No in the Ritz, though. They papped her out fae one home tae another. Shock killed her – it was meant to. Reduce the demand for new beds. Social worker told my dad. Tae his face. Proud a that, ye Hunts? Or are you a lonely wee Jeremy? Well, gie the kiddie a cute placard for Facebook. Where wis yer demo when Dad couldnae work, because who needs manufacturing – we need service? Drank his wee black heart out. Dropped dead in Linkwood Avenue – of no being a good enough servant. If he’d been hit by a truck they’d’ve tied flowers tae the lamp-post. Hit by a bunch of bankers? Nae flowers. Where were you?
Still feart? I’ll no harm ye. Moan, come ower here, pal. Unity, eh? God bless the union.
He beckons and we come.
Ye wouldnae want to leave it – all these youngsters, dreams in their eyes, wanting tae make a clean new indy Jockland? Naw dinnae risk it. That’ll pap you outside Europe. (Beat) Oh, but now the EU’s shite? We all get BoJoed? When Scotland didn’t vote for that? When we’re no scared (English) of everyone we have not taken tea with. (Glasgow) Alone on a big wet rock wi faraging gangsters and never mind our human rights cos we’re no human? Only now the shite’s got high enough, it’s reached you. May’s in it wi President Bawbag, haudin’ his wee spunky monkey hand, gettin ready tae burn the world. Iain Duncan Sanctions – he burned my world. But mibbee I deserved it cos I’m no wee and sweet? No covered in blood and dust. Like you’ve helped the weans that are…
In George Square.
This square? People died to get their freedom here. We’ve taken loss and mourned here – and we’ve stood up together and lived. But you think I’m what? Nothing? Inappropriately urban? I’ve got a sociology degree. I talk like this because I am like this. I want to be. And I’ll stand here for you. Because I know that harming one is harming all and abody’s fae somewhere and just now we’re here. You’re the one that forgot. (Whispers) You made me a refugee where I was born. What else do you think poverty makes ye? Lose your home, your things, your safety – refugee. And it’s coming for you. And when you’re dead, because you’re soft, me and the rest of us, the ones you turned into survivors – we’ll be digging out each poisoned place. And we’ll be happy like you’ve never been, because we’re not afraid. Ever. And the love we’ve got? It’s real, it’s a fire, it’s permanent sunshine.