Apis Mellifera or, The Only Reason For Being a Bee Is To Make Honey. And the Only Reason For Making Honey Is So I Can Eat It. by Katy Alexander Characters Documentarian Queen Drone 1 Drone 2 Baby Bee/ Pupae Bee/ New Bee Worker Bee Other Bees Some bees are congregated on the stage, buzzing around each other in a “hive.” They buzz around each other and do their little bee dances that communicate where the honey is. Some of them congregate around a queen, and feed her and preen her. The Narrator of the Documentary walks on and observes. DOCUMENTARIAN Ah, the honey bee hive: a bustling, complex society. One single bee hive may contain tens of thousands of insects. The species Apis mellifera has a fairly complex social structure – including a caste system. There is the Queen bee (the queen bee presents herself, waving stoically to the crowd, not unlike Queen Elizabeth), the drones, who are male, and mate with the queen, but have no stinger (the drones moan in a zombie like fashion) and the workers, who are the nonreproducing females, making the hive run (the workers do a chant together, something like “We can do it! We can do it! Put a little muscle to it!”). The honey bee goes through many stages of development in its life cycle. After the drones have mated with the queen (the drones all groan, some of the bees sing the porn music “Bow Chica Bow Wow!”), the Queen lays her eggs in specially prepared “cells” of the bee hive. (The Queen bee stretches out on the ground, as if she’s giving birth) QUEEN Oh God! Oh God! DRONE 1 What should we do? DRONE 2 Can we get her anything? QUEEN AHHHHHHHHHHHHHRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHH!!!
DRONE Oh no! QUEEN GET THIS GOD AWFUL THING OUT OF ME!!!!!!!!! (The Queen gives birth and some new bees curl up in the ground in a fetal position.) DOCUMENTARIAN The eggs incubate for approximately three and a half days. When the eggs hatch, the infant bees are known as larvae. (The baby bees uncurl and start to cry and whine.) The larvae remain in the cells as worker bees come to feed them and care for them. (Some of the worker bees come by with bottles and toys and play with the baby bees. They coo at them and make baby talk, or baby buzzing talk.) BABY BEE Waaaahhhh!! WORKER BEE Buzz buzz? Buzzzy buzzy wuzzzy! Wuzzy fuzzy buzz buzz! DOCUMENTARIAN As the larvae continue to develop, they reach the pupae stage, in between infancy and adulthood. (The baby larval bees are now pupae bees, moody and surly, prone to outbursts. A Worker bee comes to one of the larval bees and tries to play peek a boo with it) PUPAE BEE Oh my GOD, that is SO DUMB! God! Why do you always think I’m a LITTLE KID? Why do you always TREAT me this way? GOD I HATE YOU!! You don’t understand me at all! (Throws a baby bottle across the room) Whatever, I’m out of here. WORKER BEE Come back here mister! You do not speak to your surrogate mother that way! And pick up that bottle! And you are NOT going out tonight, do you hear me!? You come back in here, you have more developing to do! PUPAE BEE Uuuuuggggghhhhh! Develop develop develop! That’s all you want to talk about! I hate you! (His cell phone starts vibrating) Hang on, I’m buzzing… Yo? What up? Yeah, whatever, it’s just my stupid worker surrogate mom bee, I know. She’s says I can’t go out tonight. WORKER BEE You had better hang up that phone mister and listen to me!! I have had ENOUGH of this! YOU’RE GROUNDED!!
PUPAE BEE Oh my GOD! FUCK YOU! WHATEVER!! (The pupate bee storms off into his “cell” and slams the door) DOCUMENTARIAN When the pupas have reached this stage, the worker bees cap the tops of their cells with wax and they continue to develop in solitude. (The pupae bees are all grounded and sent to their rooms. The Worker bees all breathe in a deep sigh of frustration, and shake their heads. We see one pupae bee in his room, dressed up in black, Goth clothing, writing furiously in his journal and listening to Marilyn Manson.) What goes on in the cells during the pupae stage is a wonderful mystery of nature. These tiny larval bees are transformed in these sequestered days into beautiful adult bees, ready for the world. This process takes approximately 10 days, and the secrets of it are largely unknown to science. It’s really a miracle of nature. (The pupa bee turns off the Marilyn Manson, puts on something not black and is ready to be a productive member of society. The new adult bee emerges from its room and greets the waiting Worker bees.) NEW BEE Hi! Wow, what a beautiful day! Shall we go find some pollen for the hive? WORKER BEE Ah, first, you have to learn the dances that communicate to other bees where you’ve found food! Dances are very important in bee society. We’ll show you all the steps, though, don’t worry. NEW BEE Ah, swell! DOCUMENTARIAN During the first day of the new adult bee’s life, other worker bees attend to it once again, getting it oriented in the hive, cleaning off its body, and preparing it for work. WORKER BEE Come on, New Bee, let’s show you how to DANCE! (Funk music comes on and all the Bees start dancing and getting jiggy with it. They’re basically at a bee club. They dance and dance and dance and booty dance and have a lovely raucous time of it. They’re really all pretty drunk. They eventually collapse in exhaustion.) DOCUMENTARIAN After this first day, the bee is now expected to work continuously as a productive member of the hive. Each bee works very hard to fulfill their role in caring for larval bees, searching for food, or caring for the queen. Without each bee working, the hive of Apis mellifera would quickly fall apart. (The New Bee is lying on the ground, snoring loudly, quite passed out. Worker bees are buzzing all around him, and begin prodding him to wake up. The Queen bee sees the distress and takes it upon herself to straighten things out.)
QUEEN BEE Come on, New Bee, you need to go get some pollen! I’m quite hungry you know! Wake up! Come on! NEW BEE Uuuughhh. Oh man… my HEAD. Oh jeez, I’m really not doing so hot…. You know, I’m pretty hung over, I’m not doing so well… I think I’m going to just call in sick today…. Yeah, I’m sick, I’m going to back to bed… (The New Bee falls asleep and starts snoring while the other bees buzz around him nervously.) End