Thursday, March 5, 2009

Week Seven, Day Forty-Six - “The Twittysburg Address”

“The Twittysburg Address”
Written by Joe Janes and Abraham Lincoln
3/5/09
46 of 365

CAST:
Abraham Lincoln

(Lights up at Gettysburg. Lincoln approaches a lectern on a bare stage and takes a speech written on paper out of his coat. Above his head and behind him is a screen upon which graphics will appear.)

LINCOLN
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

(A twitter-esque graphic appears on the screen behind him. Graphic: Salmon P. Chase: “Dear Lord, I hope his speech is not as long as he is tall…or ugly.”)

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure.

(Graphic: William H. Seward: “Did he say the score was 4 to 7? Who won? Did we win?”)

We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

(Graphic: Augustus Bradford: “One does not wish to sound snarky, but it’s good he didn’t drag along that dog-eared VP Hannibal Hamlin”)

(Graphic: Horatio Seymour: “Could be worse. He could have brought his wife.”)

(Graphic: Augustus Bradford: “T’would be a wash. Hamlin is just Mary Todd in drag.”)

But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate -- we cannot consecrate -- we cannot hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract.

(GRAPHIC: Gideon Welles: “Honest Abe? More like ‘Honest-ly, Abe’ spake with a tone of exasperation.”)

The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here.

(GRAPHIC: Senator Thaddeus Stevens: “This is one of the greatest moments in history!”)

It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced.

(GRAPHIC: Senator Thaddeus Stevens: “I think he’s wrapping up.”)

We here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

(He finishes. Solemn applause. He exits.)

(GRAPHIC: Senator Thaddeus Stevens: “Anyone up for hookers and baked goose?”)

(Blackout.)

7 comments:

idjar said...

Astute portrayal of our present day descent into techno-idiocy. We know how to utilize the latest gadgetry, just not when.

Mmmmm, hookers and baked goose . . .

Cassandra said...

T'would be interesting to see an early America mixed with today. I like how you did this.

My uncle resembles Lincoln, minus the honesty and decay.

Chris Othic said...

I think this is a brilliant clash of context, and a good first draft. I think if you were to write a second draft I'd want to see even more tweets, and heighten that. I think the tweeting would eventually overwhelm the speech and I'd want to be able to identify the voice/agenda of each tweeter by the end of the scene.

I'm also a huge fan of hookers and baked goose.

Old Ned said...

Loved this one.

Paul said...

Well done. But how common was "hooker" back before the Civil War? Wasn't it General Hooker who made that term possible?

Joe Janes said...

Oh, it was probably as common as the term "twitter."

Paul said...

Twitter actually dates back to the landing at Plymouth, so you're good there, smart-ass. :)