In Laundry and Bourbon, we visit Elizabeth's back porch in Maynard, Texas, on a hot summer afternoon. Elizabeth and her friend Hattie are whiling away the time folding laundry, watching TV, sipping bourbon and Coke, and gossiping about the many open secrets that are so much a part of small town life. They are joined by the self-righteous Amy Lee, who can't resist blurting out that Elizabeth's husband has been seen around town with another woman. While the ensuing conversation is increasingly edged with bitter humor, from it emerges a sense of Elizabeth's inner stregth and her quiet understanding of the turmoil which has beset her husband since his return from Vietnam.
Lone Star takes place in the cluttered backyard of a small-town Texas bar. Roy, a brawny, macho type who had once been a local high-school hero, is back in town after a hitch in Vietnam and trying to reestablish his position in the community. Joined by his younger brother, Ray (who worships him), Roy sets about consuming a case of beer while regaling Ray with tales of his military and amorous exploits. Apparently Roy cherishes three things above all; his country, his sexy young wife, and his 1959 pink Thunderbird. With the arrival of Cletis, the fatuous, newlywed son of the local hardware store owner, the underpinnings of Roy's world begin to collapse as it gradually comes out that Ray had slept with his brother's wife during his absence and, horror of horrors, has just demolished his cherished Thunderbird. But, despite all, the high good humor of the play never lapses, and all ends as breezily and happily as it began.
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