About 9 to 5
As different members of the ensemble appear, we meet Violet, the working mother, and her son, Josh. The sexy country gal, Doralee and her husband, Dwayne, are next. Finally, the new employee, Judy, introduces herself.
We arrive at the Office Bullpen. Violet is introduced to Judy, and Judy reveals that her husband left her for a younger woman, which is why she doesn't have much work experience. Violet shows her the ropes and introduces her to the other women in the office, including Doralee . Next, she introduces her to Franklin Hart. He is the epitome of a pompous, smarmy boss and immediately sends them off to fetch his coffee. Doralee comes in for dictation, but Hart begins an aggressive flirtation. She refuses his advances despite his numerous attempts to get her into compromising positions; he vows to have his way with her. The pursuit is abruptly interrupted by his wife, Missy.
In the Filing Room, Violet and the office gals are gossiping. Joe, a junior accountant, asks Violet out, but she rejects him. She believes she is too old. Back in the Xerox room, Judy is desperately trying to clean up a mess of papers everywhere, for which, Hart berates her. As Judy tries to hide the tears, it only becomes worse when her husband shows up to drop off divorce papers. Meanwhile, at Violet and Josh's home, Violet is fixing the garage door. Josh wants his mother to relax and gives her a doobie. At first, she refuses, but eventually has him put it inside her purse. Simultaneously, when Doralee complains to Dwayne that the girls at work treat her like an outcast, he reminds her that Texans are not quitters.
Back in the Bullpen, the secretaries are preparing to leave for lunch. Maria is convinced that the men make more money than the women, while Judy is getting overwhelmed on the phone bank. Doralee asks if anyone wants to grab lunch, but even Violet and Judy won't let her join their group. Lonely, she still feels misunderstood and judged . Doralee is then called in to Hart's office to fix his chair and she learns that Hart has been saying he's sleeping with her, which is why the office has been shunning her. Roz comes in to tell him of Maria's attempt to find out salary information on the office employees. Hart wants to fire her, but Roz says that he cannot do so legally. An angry Hart leaves to fire her, himself. Overwhelmed and extremely impressed, Roz basks in her feelings for Hart.
Violet, Doralee and Judy, who are upset by Maria's firing, meet at the elevators. With mixed emotions, the three decide to take a coffee break... but they end up in Violet's living room, smoking her son's doobie. The gals indulge, one at a time, each in her own fantasy of how to get revenge on Hart. Judy imagines a film-noir-style dance that ends with a stiletto in Hart's crotch ("Dance of Death"), Doralee imagines lassoing him and permanently branding him ("Cowgirl's Revenge") and Violet imagines brewing him a magic, poisonous concoction . They revel in their victory .
The next day, in the coffee area, Violet is complaining to Joe about having to shop for rat poison and having to make Hart's coffee. They have a moment. During this, Violet mistakenly pours rat poison instead of sweetener into Hart's coffee. Hart comes in and makes a crack about Violet, and Joe almost manages to confront him. In the mix, Violet realizes her mistake and rushes to Judy and Doralee in the ladies' room. She tells them what she has done, and they agree to wait and see what happens. Roz overhears the entire exchange in a neighboring stall and she rushes to the elevator bank to tell Hart that he's been poisoned. Hart concocts a plan to hide while Roz tells the gals that he's been rushed to the hospital in critical condition.
The gals arrive at the hospital, looking for Hart. They overhear a cop talking about a guy that's been killed by poison. They assume that it's Hart and try to find his body. Violet grabs a doctor's coat and impersonates a doctor, but they are unable to find him. They head back to the office to hide the evidence. Doralee goes into Hart's office to find his coffee cup, and Hart appears, scaring her. Hart attempts to blackmail her, threatening to call the cops. Fed up, Doralee hogties him with the phone cord, and the three decide to take him hostage in his own house.
Back at the office, Roz is looking for Hart. She is concerned that he hasn't called her back. Violet realizes that they have to find a way to blackmail Hart in order to keep him quiet. They find that he has an extra set of company books, but they have to be able to prove he's legitimately stealing from the company. In the meantime, they decide to post some changes from Hart to boost employee morale and lighten up the office environment. When the changes go over so well, Judy and Doralee voice their feelings that Violet should be the permanent CEO of the company. She imagines what that would be like .
Next, in order to keep her from meddling, the gals send Roz off on a language immersion course in Denver. She is sent away for a month to learn French and she reflects on her love for Hart before departing. Once Roz leaves, the girls put more of their office changes into effect, including rehab for Margaret, daycare for the other ladies and rehiring Maria. Over the course of the next few weeks, the whole office gets remade into a happier, more productive place.
At lunch, Joe remarks to Violet that someone else must be running the office since he's enjoying coming to work so much. Violet evades him, but she eventually tells Joe the truth of their ploy. Joe offers to help with the books, but he wants Violet to go out with him. She is still mourning the husband who died three years ago and isn't sure that she has the ability to love another man. He encourages her to open up to him.
Over at Hart's House, Judy is babysitting Hart. Her ex-husband, Dick, has followed her. He reveals that the relationship with his mistress was unsuccessful and he wants her back. Judy refuses and explains to him that she is not the same person she once was.
Later, Violet, Joe and Doralee enter Hart's office to finalize their evidence against him, when he suddenly bursts in with Judy and Doralee's gun. He was able to escape and has now turned the tables on them. When the group attempts to blackmail him, he calls their bluff and prepares to contact the authorities. Before he can, Margaret enters to announces that the Chairman of the Board, Mr. Tinsworthy, is on his way up to the office. Tinsworthy arrives demanding to know who is responsible for the 20% increase in company productivity. Hart tries to tell him about being taken hostage but Violet wisely preempts him and comes clean. Tinsworthy, believing it is all a prank, dismisses the claims; he wants to send Hart to Bolivia for the opening of their next big operation and Violet will replace Hart as CEO of the company.
Stand Up For...Theatre
How Do You Like Me Now (HDYLMN) Productions, Inc. exists because great success is the best revenge.
The organization formed following the suicide death of a local young man named Nicolas.
“Nic” had been bullied relentlessly about his perceived sexual orientation — perceived because, at 14, how could anyone other than Nick have known? — before ending his life on October 8, 2011. While his classmates celebrated a birthday less than two miles away, Nic tragically left this world, his family and his friends.
We, the founders of HDYLMN (Ed, Grant and Robert), felt compelled to take action. For months, we attempted to honor Nic’s memory and raise awareness of the devastating impact of bullying by working with local community theaters to bring a production of “The Laramie Project” to the stage.
Finally, frustrated by insurmountable obstacles, we started our own nonprofit theater to produce the play in Howard County, thus beginning an amazing adventure. And though Robert soon moved on to pursue other opportunities, HDYLMN continues to push forward in its mission.
The organization has expanded into two divisions: (1) Stand Up For…Theatre (SUFT) presents musicals and straight plays with themes that advocate acceptance over tolerance. (2) Erase Hate Through Art (EHTA) curates fine art exhibitions of original work by artists who support our fight against bullying and hate crimes in the LGBTQ community and for all of humanity.
EHTA also volunteers to curate exhibits at More Than Java Café (MTJC) on Main Street in Laurel, Md.
MTJC opened in 2015 planning to display the work of local artists to set a relaxing tone for customers to enjoy their coffee and healthy food.
Every 28 days, EHTA and MTJC — a minority, women-owned business serving coffee from Dublin Roasters Coffee of Frederick, Md. (also women-owned) and teas by local tea master Minna Nilanont of Hemp Kettle Tea Company — feature a new artist working in a unique medium using one-of-a-kind techniques.
Previous exhibits have included works created with encaustic (bees) wax, sharpie marker on canvas and even make-up on paper.
HDYLMN also produces the “Magic and Muggles” summer camp for 8–12-year-olds at the Chesapeake Arts Center in Brooklyn Park, Md. Loosely based on the J. K. Rowling books, “Magic and Muggles” is an art and theater camp structured to teach kids how to deal with bullying while creating on-theme art projects. The camp culminates in the presentation of an original play written by HDYLMN co-founder Ed Higgins.
Our motto is: “When you get there, look over your shoulder and ask, ‘How do you like me now?’”