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Xena Country

by Albuquerque Annie and Gopher
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(To Jett with lots of love from Gopher and Albuquerque Annie)

BACKSTAGE AT A COUNTRY BENEFIT CONCERT, LATE AFTERNOON Several participants are lounging around practicing their number, working on new songs, or just talking. Xena and Gabrielle arrive.

Gabrielle: Where are we?

Xena: Who knows? (pulls out a scroll with a map on it) Oh, I get it! Argo should've turned right at Albuquerque!

Tanya Tucker comes up and welcomes Xena: Hi, Hon!

Xena: What?!

Xena gives Tanya "the look."

Tanya: Hi, Hon!

Gabrielle senses a nasty confrontation, pulls Xena aside, and explains: They talk like that.

Xena (flatly and still not amused): Uh-huh.

Michelle Wright skulks up, checks out Xena, and does a little pose: Ooh! I love that outfit! Where'd you get it?

Xena and Gabrielle don't pay attention to her. Instead, Reba McEntire catches their eye.

Gabrielle (to Xena): Look at that hair! It's as big as Mt. Olympus!

Xena: Yeah. I know some small animals who'd love a home like that.

Reba overhears and gives Xena her version of "the look." Xena does "the look," and after a minute, Reba amazingly backs down.

Xena and Gabrielle walk to the other side of the room where Bob Dylan is practicing. They listen a while, then they whisper to each other.

Gabrielle: He's not supposed to be here. He's not a country singer. What's he saying, anyway?

Xena: How should I know?

Gabrielle: You're supposed to be the foreign language expert!

Xena: You're the bard!

Gabrielle: So what?!

Xena: You deal with language!

Gabrielle: So what?!

They look at each other, knowing what is on each other's mind.


Kris Kristofferson, inebriated after spending a night out with the rest of the Highwaymen, volunteers his services.

Xena (to Gabrielle): I guess only drunk people can understand Bob Dylan!

Kris to Xena (Kris's words are so badly slurred that we'll have to translate for you): Well! Aren't YOU a tall drink of water! (hiccups, then looks at her outfit and tries to laugh) It must've taken a whole side of cow to make that thing!

Kris passes out, Xena and Gabrielle step over him, then the ladies meander over toward the sofa in the center of the room where Albuquerque Annie, Emmylou Harris, and Gopher are talking about music. Gabrielle and Xena hungrily eye Gopher.

Gabrielle (whispering to Xena): I think I know what we're having for dinner tonight. You keep them busy while I get her.

Albuquerque Annie (to Gopher who's nibbling the edge of the wooden coffee table): Don't, Goph! I told you you could come with me as long as you were nice!

Emmylou (explaining to Albuquerque Annie): See? This is what I mean by describing it as a sort of musical onomatopoeia. (picks up her guitar and sings) Beneath still waters, there's a strong undertow....

Xena interrupts: That's what I told Gabrielle.

Gabrielle (pausing with her hands around Gopher's neck): Did you? I wasn't listening.

Albuquerque Annie (seeing Gabrielle try to strangle Gopher): What are you doing?!

Gabrielle: Trying to get tonight's dinner.

Albuquerque Annie: Well, DON'T! She's with me!

Gabrielle: Okay, okay! What's your problem?!

Gabrielle backs away and Xena rolls her eyes impatiently.

Albuquerque Annie: Don't you EVER touch my Gopher again!

Gopher happily nibbles on the edge of Albuquerque Annie's guitar case.

Albuquerque Annie (to Gabrielle): On second thought, she's all yours!

Jett then bursts through the door and storms into the room as heads turn and everyone quiets down.

Jett: Yeah, CATS STINK! [Parody writers' note: "Stink" is supposed to be a more family-oriented term than Jett would actually use. ] I'm late 'cause drunk dancing cats kept me up all night. Then, they got tangled up and passed out in one massive hairball that blocked my driveway. I finally ran 'em over.

Gabrielle's eyes light up: Uh, Xena, I think I know what we're going to have for dinner. Buffet time! The drunk cats already marinated themselves, and we also have rodent!

Gopher: I AM NOT A RODENT!!!! And I protest your using me as dinner!

Gabrielle (momentarily startled): A talking gopher? (angrily) Who asked you, anyway?!

Xena: Not now, Gabrielle! (smiles charmingly at Jett and waves) Hi, Jett!

Albuquerque Annie: Howdy, Sis! (goes over to Jett and gives her a Milky Way and a big bearhug)

Jett: Hi, Little Sis! Hi, Xena!

Albuquerque Annie: Would you please play "You Are My Sunshine" for me?

Albuquerque Annie gives Jett an evil grin.

Gopher (stops gnawing on Gabrielle's leg for a minute): Yeah, please, Jett?

Jett (playing and singing): You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. You make me hap-PY when skies are gray.

Gopher: Watch-out-Jett's-on-the-loose!

Jett starts giggling like a schoolgirl and gives Albuquerque Annie an I-really-don't-wanna-do-this look. Then, Jett can't control her laughter and has to stop the song. Everybody laughs until they hear a strange, high-pitched, horrible sound.

Albuquerque Annie: Jett hit the whammy bar again!

Jett: Nope! The drunk cats are alive and are plotting their revenge!

Reba: Nope! Someone stepped on Cowcat's tail!

Emmylou: Nope! Gabrielle has Gopher in a headlock!

Gabrielle: Nope! Xena just broke all the strings on Albuquerque Annie's guitar! (to Xena) Sorry! I just had to get that one in.

Xena (glaring at Gabrielle): Nope! Kris is singing again!

All: YEAH! THAT'S IT!!!!

Lucy Fan: Hey, don't knock it! He sounds a whle lot better when he's drunk than when he's sober!

Gopher and Albuquerque Annie (blowing everyone a kiss): Thank you, thank you! Goodnight, everybody!

[Parody writers' final note: Albuquerque Annie actually spelled "onomatopoeia" without using a dictionary!]

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