Joseph is speaking into a mobile phone.
Hello, Mother, it’s Joseph… Joseph… your son! Yes, I know it’s been a long time since I last rang, but I’m afraid I’ve been rather busy… (Joseph looks rather bored) Yes Mother, I’m still here… Oh, I’m fine, fine… Mary? She’s fine… The carpentry business… Yes, it’s fine…
Look mother, I think I ought to come round and see you sometime soon… Oh, it’s no trouble, I’m actually in Bethlehem for the census… Ah, well, of course I would have stayed with you, but I, um, knew how busy you’d be with everyone coming home for the census, without the three of us landing on you… Did I say three? I did!? I was talking about Mary, me and the… um… donkey… That’s it… No its OK we got a room… well more of a stable really… Oh now, Mother, don’t get upset… I only said stable because it’s full of straw and animals and… (sniffs air) things. No what I should have said is “Stable-Like building…” extremely stable-like!
Mother, are you sitting down? Well, its just that I’ve got something to tell you that I really think you would be better hearing in a seated position… Ready?
I’m a father… only I’m not… What I mean is that I’ve got a son… in a manner of speaking… What I’m trying to say is that Mary has had a baby boy which is, I suppose, in some sense mine, if not actually my own… In so many words… If you get my drift… Mother? (no reply) Mother? Mother, are you still there… (Suddenly holds receiver at arms length) Yes, you are still there, are’t… Well, if you’d just let me explain! (Shouting) Well what would you do if your fiancée told you she’d just been discussing family planning with an Archangel? Of course I didn’t believe her… At least not until I’d talked it over with him myself…
Yes I know it doesn’t take an angel to make a baby… Of course I remember you teaching me about the birds and the bees! How could I forget? I was 10 year old at the time, and I spent the next 2 months in terror of being stung by a wasp in case I got pregnant.
Look sorry mum, I‘ve got to go. We’ve got guests… 4 shepherds 3 oriental diplomats, and a baby lamb, No I know it doesn’t sound terribly hygienic having a lamb around a newborn baby… But things are getting out of control here… See you soon. Give my love to Father.
Adapted from a monologue entitled "Maternity Ward" by Nick McIvor in his now unobtainable book "The Greatest Burger Ever Sold." He gave me permission to use and adapt his stuff years ago but when I tried getting his permission to post this, I had no joy in tracking him down.