Nobody Knows I'm a Dog
by Alan David Perkins
Copyright © 1995
Parkside Players' presentation of
Knows I'm a Dog
L-R, Ray Bonétt, Starr, Jim Burns, Ken Anders, Shana Aborn, Kevin Schwab.
Nobody Knows I'm a Dog is a full-length play about six people
who, for their own reasons, communicate over the Internet. The play explores
the notion that though people try to manufacture fantasy personas in
cyberspace, their real personality eventually comes through.
The six people talk by posting to a Newsgroup on the Internet. Present is
a quote-spouting teenager, a middle-aged housewife who fancies herself a
vixen, an un-educated sounding dullard with overactive hormones who may not
be as dumb as he lets on, a man who takes the persona of a woman, a
curmudgeon who likes nobody but keeps talking to them, and a girl who feels
Click here to visit the
"Nobody Knows I'm a Dog" Homepage.
PLATO - Male, teenager. Geeky, nerdy.
NADINE - Female, middle-aged housewife.
PHYLLIS - Male, 30's.
CHEESE - Male, 40's. The Curmudgeon.
CUTIEPIE - Female, late 20's-early 30's.
HORNDOG - Male, mid 30's.
85 - 100 minutes.
The stage should be barren with the exception of six evenly spaced stations
with a chair and a table or stand which holds a computer. Actual computers
are not needed, though keyboards are recommended.
The play is in two acts. Each act is divided into multiple scenes
representing different facets of the Internet (Newsgroup, E-mail and IRC).
I have an entire website dedicated to this play. Click here if you want to go
I've been mulling over this play for a long time. Long before the
Internet became fashionable I used to frequent bulletin board services. It
was there I noticed that the same people would post all the time, and in
most cases they were just lonely. I saw a story there. Then I started to do
some research (there are many books available on finding love online, as
well as lots of undercover work) and it all popped into place.
There's a rhythm to the Internet. There is no spontaneity; everyone has
plenty of time to think about what they're going to say. As a result, people
either say too much or too little. That became one of the challenges when
writing this play -- maintaining that rhythm. The second challenge was to
keep things moving. Face it, the play is about 90 minutes long and there is
NO physical action. Everybody basically sits there and types. When the show
went up at Queens College, Allison Scott, the director, worked the actors on
their own individual characters to the point that, even though they all just
sat there, there was so much intensity within each of them that it appeared
that the play had tons of action.
The third challenge was appealing to an audience. I had a choice -- go
with people who knew the Net or didn't. I chose the latter because the play
was about these six people, not the Internet (sorry, no manifestos here).
Therefore, I wrote it from the standpoint of the reader (or viewer) knowing
very little about the Internet.
CONTACTING THE PLAYWRIGHT:
The entire script of
Nobody Knows I'm a Dog is available upon request
from the playwright. No
production of this play can take place without permission from the