Night. A Leg Lamp on an end table illuminates EDDIE who sits alone on a sofa. Eddie is tall and lean with brown hair and in his mid-twenties. He wears a white, collared shirt, black pants, no shoes and no socks. He stares at the closed closet door across the room. In the spaces around the door, there is a bright light that is heliotrope in color. Every ten to fifteen seconds, he turns to the window, opposite the closet, and looks out on his driveway. Eddie is anxious.
Headlights fill the living room. Eddie leaps from the sofa and begins to walk towards the front door which is next to the window.
A muffled howl is heard coming from the closet. Eddie stops just before the door and spins around. He stares at the closet door and listens intently.
There’s knocking at the front door. Eddie jumps. He looks ashamed, laughs nervously, turns around and opens the front door.
At the door is ALAN. Alan, the same age as Eddie, is of average height and stocky with blonde hair. He wears a t-shirt, blue jeans and a vest. Eddie moves out of the way and Alan enters the living room. Alan starts pacing in front of the sofa while Eddie stands between him and the door.
Alan: Just as I was settled in after pulling a double shift – a brutal double, might I add. My uniform tossed somewhere on the floor, forgotten along with the day. Me in nothing but a pair of cozy boxers, in the recliner, about to eat a reheated steak accompanied by a cold beer in a frosty mug with a quarter inch cloud of head. Then the phone rings. It’s Eddie. He’s frantic. I say, ‘Eddie, what’s wrong, my man?’ But Eddie won’t tell me. He says I have to come over. I tell him that I, friend and confidant, am here for him in audio form. He can tell his old pal Al all his troubles right over the phone. But no, Eddie insists that I come over. Immediately. I tell him of the steak, of the frosty mug. ‘It’s an emergency’ he says. ‘What’s the emergency?’ He won’t say. ‘Just come over now’ he says. So I put on some clothes. Then I drive all the way over here. Across town. My steak? No doubt cold and rubbery. And that beer? Oh! what of the beer? It is surely warm and flat. But that doesn’t matter. I’m here now for my friend Eddie. (He puts his hand on Eddie’s shoulder and shakes him) Eddie? My man? Are you going to tell me what the hell the problem is?
Eddie tilts his head towards the closet.
Eddie repeats the tilt.
Alan: Are you kidding right now? You make me drive all the way over here and then you just nod?
Eddie is silent.
Alan: Well! (He tilts his head towards the front door) See ya!
Alan turns and heads to the door. As he passes Eddie, Eddie grabs his arm and stops him.
Eddie: The closet.
Alan: It speaks. But what did It say?
Eddie: The closet.
Alan: ‘The closet.’ ‘The closet.’? What about the closet?
Eddie: There…There’s something in there.
Alan: There’s something in the closet? What? A skeleton? R. Kelly? (He huffs) Bother Gordon with this bullshit. I’m out of here.
Alan makes towards the door.
Eddie: Goddammit, Al! Look!
Alan turns around at Eddie’s scream and follows Eddie’s outstretched arm and finger to the closet. He sees the glowing light around the door. He stares at it for nearly a minute and then looks back to Eddie, studying him.
Alan: (Laughs) Alright. I’ll bite.
Alan walks over to the closet.
Eddie: Al, no!
Alan: ‘Al, no! Don’t open the closet and fall for the dumbass prank I’ve dragged you from your steak and beer for.’
Alan opens the closet. The heliotrope light splashes out onto the entire living room. Music starts up from inside. It is disco-/electro-like.
Alan: What the hell?
Inside the closet is a cave, its rocks glittering and the same color as the light. Several feet from the closet door, at the cave’s entrance, there is a woman. The woman is short and curvy with blonde hair. She wears a black body suit which exposes her entire right arm, left leg and the right half of her abdomen. The woman begins singing along to the music.
Alan: Is that Shakira?
Eddie comes running up to the closet. He pulls Alan from the entrance and slams the door. The music continues though is now muffled.
Eddie: That’s the She Wolf! The She Wolf in my closet!
Alan: ‘She Wolf’? Dude. That’s Colombian-American singer/songwriter, musician, record producer, dancer and philanthropist Shakira.
Alan opens the closet door again and peeks in. At the front of the cave, still singing, and now dancing, her body lithe, the movements clipped, is SHAKIRA. He closes the door.
Alan: Yep, that is definitely Shakira. Eddie. (He puts his arm around Eddie) I take back everything I said earlier. I’m glad you pulled me away from my reheated steak and frosty brew. Now I just want to ask you something. And I want you to be straight with your old pal Al, ok? We’re best friends and best friends are honest with one another. That is what I ask for from you at this moment: Honesty. And Trust. Ok?
Eddie stares at him.
Alan: Ok. Now what I want to ask you, Eddie, is, Why is Colombian-American singer/songwriter, musician, record producer, dancer and philanthropist Shakira in your living room closet?
Eddie: I don’t know.
Alan: You don’t know?
Eddie: No, I don’t know.
Alan: Ok. Well how did you find her?
Eddie: I came home from work today and was going to hang my coat up in the closet. I opened the closet door and instead of the hangers, coats, shoes, and stuff there was this cave. I stood in the doorway and looked at this cave. It was sparkling and its color was comforting. A woman came down the cave. She was beautiful. Music began to play and she started to sing. I watched for awhile mesmerized. I got a little turned on. But then she began to move strangely and howl. She had claws. I got scared and closed the closet. I thought maybe I had just smoked too much on the ride home. I opened the door again. She was still there. I shut it again and sat on the couch. I guess a few hours passed. I went to the closet. I closed my eyes and opened the door. When I opened my eyes, there she was. Still. Dancing like…like an epileptic robot or something. But like a tigress pretending to be an epileptic robot. I don’t know. It freaked me out, man. So I called you.
Alan: Dude, Shakira is in your closet. In some kind of purple cave. Do you know how insane that is? It’s like some kind of Latina Pop Portal.
Eddie: She Wolf.
Eddie: You say Shakira but it’s She Wolf.
Alan: What is with this ‘She Wolf’ business?
Eddie: That’s what she is singing about. How she’s a She Wolf.
Alan: It’s Shakira. Trust me. (Sings off key) ‘I’m on tonight you know my hips don’t lie, I’m somethin’ somethin’ somethin’’.
Alan grins at Eddie but Eddie looks uneasy. Alan punches Eddie’s arm.
Alan: Dude! Lighten up! You’ve got Shakira in your closet!
Eddie: She Wolf.
Alan: (He rolls his eyes) Fine. You’ve got She Wolf in your closet!
Eddie: You act as if that’s a good thing.
Alan: Isn’t it?
Eddie is silent. He walks over to the sofa and sits down.
Eddie: Al, we’ve got to do something.
Alan joins him on the sofa.
Alan: What do you suggest, sir?
Eddie: I think we have to let her out. But I’m scared of what may happen.
Alan: You really don’t know Shakira?
Alan: She’s a Colombian-American singer/songwriter, musician, record producer, dancer and philanthropist. What’s the worst that could happen? She offers a song and some belly dancing for our benefit?
Eddie: Those moves and those claws didn’t scream altruism, Alan. Nor did that howl or those words.
Alan: The words! There’s an idea! Why don’t we hear what she has to say? Shakira es una chica inteligente. I’m sure we can determine from her lyrics what she wants.
Eddie: I don’t know, man.
Alan: Oh come on! We’ll stand in the doorway, alright? That is a safe distance for us to observe.
Eddie rubs his head.
Alan rises first and heads to the closet with Eddie slowly following. The pair stands in front of the door. Alan looks at Eddie.
Alan: Ready, Eddie?
Eddie looks down at the floor and takes a deep breath.
Alan opens the door. The men and the living room are bathed in light. The cave is empty.
Alan: Where’s Shakira?
The music begins.
Eddie: She’s coming.
Shakira emerges at the end of the cave. She begins to sing and dance. Alan and Eddie watch and listen.
Shakira: S.O.S. she’s in disguise. S.O.S. she’s in disguise. There’s a she wolf in disguise.
Eddie: See? I told you. She Wolf.
Shakira: The moon’s awake now with eyes wide open. My body is craving, so feed the hungry. I’ve been devoting myself to you Monday to Monday and Friday to Friday.
Alan: Now what I like about Shakira – other than her sexy Colombian-American body – is this broken English quality to the lyrics.
Shakira: I’m starting to feel just a little abused like a coffee machine in an office.
Alan: Like that!
Eddie: I don’t know if that’s really broken English.
Alan: True. I think she writes in Spanish and then translates it to English. That is why she writes such odd metaphors and similes. Wait. She probably thinks in Spanish and then translates. (Looks at Eddie) Have you ever thought about that?
Eddie: About the She Wolf in my closet thinking in Spanish? No.
Alan: No, not that! I mean people whose native language is different than the one they’re speaking. Like a German in France probably thinks in German and then speaks in French.
Eddie: If you knew the language wouldn’t you think in it? The mind uses words as symbols for objects. Sometimes there are different symbols for the same object. Like stone and rock. Same thing, different words. So someone who knows different languages would think of it that way.
Alan: And a fine point you’ve made— Whoa. Did you just see that move?
Eddie: That’s what I was talking about, man.
Shakira: There’s a she wolf in the closet. Open up and set her free. There’s a she wolf in your closet. Let it out so it can breathe.
Alan: Did you hear that?
Alan: Shakira wants out.
Eddie: I don’t know. What’s gonna happen?
Alan: She’ll probably twitch and writhe her way right out of the door.
Eddie rubs his head.
Eddie: Ok. Let’s open it up and get out of the way.
Eddie opens the door up fully. He and Alan move to the sides of the door. They watch as Shakira, still singing and dancing, notices the open doorway and exits the closet. Eddie and Alan follow her into the living room with their eyes. The light from the cave goes out but neither Eddie or Alan notice.
Eddie: Where the hell’s my sofa?
In the place of Eddie’s sofa is a silver cage. Its dimensions are roughly 6 x 6 x 6. Around the cage are strips of light that illuminate the cage. Eddie and Alan look at the cage and then at one another.
Alan: The insanity of this situation has gone insane.
Eddie and Alan look back at the cage to find Shakira now inside of it and in a different outfit: a skin-tone leotard with a black belt. She continues her song.
Alan: Is Shakira in the raw?
Eddie: I think it’s a bodysuit or a— How is she putting her leg like that?!
Shakira: Sitting across a bar staring right at her prey. It’s going well so far, she’s gonna get her way. Nocturnal creatures are not so prudent. The moon’s my teacher, and I’m her student.
Alan: I do believe Shakira is offering us a feminist anthem. That cave was rather womb-like now that I think of it.
Eddie: Your nonsense is not helping matters.
Alan: It’s not nonsense. She’s talking about empowerment. And the colors from the cave? They were womb-like. Or vagina-like, if you prefer.
Eddie: If you’re trying to console me, it’s not working.
Alan: I do believe you mentioned earlier feeling a sense of comfort coming from the cave. Perhaps because of its womb-like nature? Is not the womb the epicenter of comfort?
Eddie: Not when you’re joined by a howling, beclawed She Wolf.
Alan: She is a woman expressing herself. And you and your masculinity are threatened by her raw femininity.
Eddie turns to Alan.
Eddie: Are you serious? I came home from work and there was some freaky chick in my coat closet!
Alan: ‘Freaky chick’? Such patriarchal nomenclature, Eddie.
Eddie: Goddammit, Al!
Shakira: There’s a she wolf in your closet. Let it out so it can breathe.
The music stops. Eddie and Alan turn back towards the cage but it has been replaced by the sofa. Shakira stands between the sofa and front door. She is now wearing pajamas consisting of a white top and gray shorts. The moonlight shines through the window and illuminates her. Eddie and Alan stand staring at her for a few moments as she smiles politely back.
Eddie: (To Alan) Say something.
Alan: Uh…Hello Colombian-American singer/songwriter, musician, record producer, dancer and philanthropist Shakira!
Shakira: In the past, there were many times when I felt alone pushing that huge, massive, heavy structure. By the time I was 10, I was laying one brick after the other, under the sun, by myself. I wasn’t too much of a sociable animal. But we live in a predatory society, in an animal city. It’s like an interruptus intercourse.
Eddie and Alan look at each other.
Shakira: In action I am a humble piña colada.
Alan: (Laughs awkwardly) I enjoy a piña colada when the mood strikes me.
Shakira: Today I can stand one or two cocktails.
Eddie: (To Alan) She wants a drink? (To Shakira) Would you like something to drink, She Wolf— I mean, Shakira?
Shakira: By the way, the mongoose couldn’t come. He couldn’t make it today because he’s getting ready for the tour. But I’m here and in his representation… I guess I’m in an existentialist mode right now. That’s why I’m sounding like an old-fashioned hippie.
Eddie: Um, alright. Since you’re in an ‘existential mode right now’, could you explain how you got in my coat closet?
Alan: Yeah. Is it a Latina Pop Portal? Should we expect Paulina Rubio or Gloria Estefan tomorrow?
Alan: I’m just trying to help. If Gloria Estefan and the Miami Sound Machine show up tomorrow, you’re going to need my help. That’s a large and lively crew. Un nightmare de logisiticas.
Shakira: My legs were hairy as hell!
Alan: Come again?
Shakira: Whatever I cannot say through my songs, I say through my paintings. For example, I have a full collection of fried eggs. I paint fried eggs. I painted Sherlock Holmes with a fried egg in his brain and I called it Fried Sherlock Holmes. And I did a pregnant woman with a fried egg inside her belly. I did a profile of the woman eating a carrot.
Eddie: I’m sorry Shakira, but I don’t understand what you are saying.
Shakira: You know what? Jazz makes me happy.
Eddie: Uh, ok. I have some jazz. I’ll put some on.
Eddie turns around to exit the room.
Alan: Eddie, I think she’s leaving.
Eddie turns around. Shakira walks to the front door, opens it and exits. Eddie and Alan stand still for a moment before rushing to the window and looking out.
Eddie: Do you see her?
A howl is heard. Eddie goes to the front door and locks it. He leans with his back against it and looks at Alan.
Eddie: What in the hell just happened?
Alan: I’m not entirely sure. That song’s kinda catchy though. (Sings) ‘There’s a she wolf in my closet. Open up and set her free. Ahwooooo!’