Here is an excerpt from Denial of the Fittest. The play starts in blackout with Judith manipulating bright lime green glow in the dark objects:

Judith: I always felt like I’ve been saying the right thing at the wrong time, or the wrong thing at the right time, or the right thing at the right time in the wrong place. I always felt like I’ve been running around screaming “the sky is falling, the sky is falling,” and most people would say, “don’t be such an alarmest.” Now I run around screaming “the sky is falling, the sky is falling, “ and most people say, “yeah…so…what else is new?”

When I was a little girl, my mother, my father, my sister, my brother, my grandmother, the dog and I moved to a new house. When I was nine, my grandmother died. When I was twelve, my father died. When I was fifteen, we had a big fire. I discovered that Frank Zappa records do melt. All in all, I had a very happy childhood. I did. Really. I did.

I wish I was able to think about one thing at a time. I wish I was able to do one thing at a time. I used to think I wanted to save the world. Now I’m happy if I have time enough to do my laundry. I’d be happy if I could just spend a little time cleaning up my apartment, putting things into their proper place. Creating proper places to put things into. Almost everyone I know is doing more than one thing at a time. Two things at a time are not so bad. I can handle thinking about two things at once, like thinking about making a left turn and thinking about going back to public school so I can learn how to pray. After all, that might be the only affordable health care policy for the 21st century: Pray that you don’t get sick!

When I was fifteen. . .

Includes the script of Denial of the Fittest. From the editors:
“Judith Sloan is a superb performing artist who makes the personal into the political. She takes on the nuances of personal everyday life experiences and combines them with larger current world issues, plays with them and entices her audiences with biting insight and poignant realites. In her performance pieceDenial of the Fittest, her protagonist must deal with the deceptions and secrets of her family and her own inner past before she can find her authentic identity.” 

Denial of the Fittest is a one woman show that interweaves family secrets and public lies. Featuring a dozen characters in the person of actress performance artist Judith Sloan, this funny and haunting work traverses a Jewish family’s taboos, nervous breakthroughs, nuclear meltdowns, beauty school and an ever-expanding hole in the ozone layer. It is a chronicle of memory and transformation, based on Judith’s own coming to terms with the deaths of her father and grandmother when she was a young girl. Written by Judith Sloan and Warren Lehrer, Denial of the Fittest is a madcap look at the effects of whispers, silence and lies within a nuclear family and the nuclear secrets of a global family. Running time: one hour, twenty minutes. Workshop performances originally developed at La Mama ETC. It received critical acclaim at Edinburgh Fringe Festival and has been produced in theaters, universities and conferences throughout the USA and in Canada.

From Memory to Transformation
Editors Sarah Silberstein Swartz and Margie Wolfe


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