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Chris Treece, Peyton McCarthy and the last cruller


Rehearsals are notoriously tedious, denoted by lengthy periods of down time as directors, their tech assistants and the stage manager confer on blocking, props, costumes and sound and lighting cues. Some actors read. Others listen to music. And some just goof around. The latter can sometimes have catastrophic consequences.

Take what happened on the set of Unnecessary Farce for instance. Chris Treece and Peyton McCarthy play two bumbling police officers who are setting up a sting operation in a local motel. True to form, wherever you find police officers, real or fictional, you’re likely to find donuts … or in the case of Unnecessary Farce, crullers.

On this particular day, Treece and McCarthy gave into temptation and actually ate some of the props.

“Oh God,” McCarthy exclaimed when they both reached for the last cruller.

Treece was quicker and snatched up.

“Oh shit,” said McCarthy. “Flip you for it!”

“I have a better idea,” chuckled Treece. Eyeing his partner’s thin frame, he figured she couldn’t weigh a hundred pounds soaking wet. “Let’s arm wrestle.”

“Sure,” smiled Peyton, clearing a spot on one of the desks that’s part of the Unnecessary Farce set.

The two kneeled on the stage and entwined their right hands and arms.

“Ready?” Treece challenged.

“Born ready,” McCarthy countered.

Treece figured this would be quick and easy. That cruller was all his. But he’s a gentleman, so he offered to split the pastry right down the middle instead.

“Nope,” McCarthy smugly replied.

“Your funeral,” Treece scoffed.

“Brigadoon,” McCarthy shot right back.

Then the two went at it.

Thirty seconds later, Treece grimaced in shock. He hadn’t budged McCarthy’s arm a single inch.

A minute in, beads of perspiration began running down his forehead and ruddy cheeks.

Across the table, McCarthy looked unfazed, unflappable, bemused and even a little bored.

By then, the rest of the cast and crew had gathered ‘round, shouting encouragement to both of the competitors.

“Had enough, Chris?” Peyton taunted.

Treece redoubled his efforts. He grabbed the corner of the table with his left hand to gain some additional leverage.

“I’m famished,” Peyton yawned. “If this is all ya got, it’s cruller time!”

And with that, she nailed Treece’s right arm to the tabletop with such force and rapidity that she tore his rotator cuff and bicep tendon, causing nerve damage in his shoulder as well.

Of course, McCarthy felt awful and drove Treece to the emergency room, munching the cruller as she dodged traffic lights.

When the ER nurse asked how the injury happened, Treece fixed Peyton with a scathing look. “Donuts,” he spat.

“Donuts?” asked the perplexed nurse.

He nodded toward Peyton. “This one can’t get enough of them. We got to the last cruller and decided to arm wrestle for it. Obviously, I lost.”

The nurse wheeled around, then did a double take as she surveyed her slender physique. “Why didn’t you two just split it?”

Peyton shrugged nonchalantly.


“Why not.”

“It was from Divine Donuts.”

Say no more.

Draw your own conclusions from this cautionary tale, but suffice it say that this has been an unnecessary farce of poor Chris Treece’s actual injury.

Unnecessary Face plays at The Belle Theatre in Cape Coral January 5-21. Chris Treece and Peyton McCarthy appreciate your support in this time of great personal pain and tragedy.

Read an advance for the show here.

Go here for play dates, times and a full cast list.

January 5, 2024.

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