Never, never, interrupt me, okay? Not if there’s a fire, not even if you hear the sound of a thud from my home and one week later there’s a smell coming from there that can only be a decaying human body and you have to hold a hanky to your face because the stench is so thick that you think you’re going to faint. Even then, don’t come knocking. Or, if it’s election night, and you’re excited and you want to celebrate because some fudgepacker that you date has been elected the first queer president of the United States and he’s going to have you down to Camp David, and you want someone to share the moment with. Even then, don’t knock. Not on this door. Not for any reason. Do you get me, sweetheart?
Jack Nicholson Monologues
Take caution in your tone, Commander. I’m a fair guy, but this fuckin’ heat’s making me absolutely crazy. You want to know about code reds? On the record I tell you that I discourage the practice in accordance with the NIS directive. Off the record I tell you that it’s an invaluable part of close infantry training, and if it happens to go on without my knowledge, so be it. I run my unit how I run my unit. You want to investigate me, roll the dice and take your chances. I eat breakfast 300 yards away from 4000 Cubans who are trained to kill me. So don’t think for one second, that you can come down here, flash a badge, and make me nervous.
Time changes things like the fruit stand that turns into a filling station. But the footprints and signs from the past are everywhere. They’ve been fighting over this land since the first Spanish missionaries showed the Indians the benefits of religion, horses, and a few years of forced labor. The Indians had it right all along. They respected ghosts. You can’t forget the past any more than you can change it. Hearing Katherine Mulwray’s name started me thinking about old secrets, family, property, and a guy doin’ his partner dirt. Memories are like that – as unpredictable as nitro, and you never know what’s gonna set one off. Like the clues that keep you on the right track are never where you look for them. They fall out of the pocket of somebody else’s suit you pick up at the cleaners. They’re in the tune you can’t stop humming, that you never heard in your life. They’re at the other end of the wrong number you dial in the middle of the night. The signs are in those old familiar places you only think you’ve never been before. But you get used to seeing them out of the corner of your eye, and you end up tripping over the ones that are right in front of you.
Wendy, let me explain something to you. Whenever you come in here and interrupt me, you’re breaking my concentration. You’re distracting me. And it will then take me time to get back to where I was. Understand? I’m gonna make a new rule. Whenever I’m in here, and you hear me typing, whether you don’t hear me typing, whatever the fuck you hear me doing in here, when I’m in here, that means that I am working. That means don’t come in. Now do you think you can handle that? Why don’t you start right now and get the fuck out of here?
I don’t want to be a product of my environment. I want my environment to be a product of me. Years ago we had the church. That was only a way of saying – we had each other. The Knights of Columbus were real head-breakers; true guineas. They took over their piece of the city. Twenty years after an Irishman couldn’t get a fucking job, we had the presidency. May he rest in peace. That’s what the niggers don’t realize. If I got one thing against the black chappies, it’s this – no one gives it to you. You have to take it.
Well as near as I can figure out, it’s because I fight and fuck too much. … She was fifteen years old, going on thirty-five, Doc, and she told me she was eighteen, she was very willing, I practically had to take to sewing my pants shut. Between you and me, uh, she might have been fifteen, but when you get that little red beaver right up there in front of you, I don’t think it’s crazy at all and I don’t think you do either. No man alive could resist that, and that’s why I got into jail to begin with. And now they’re telling me I’m crazy over here because I don’t sit there like a goddamn vegetable. Don’t make a bit of sense to me. If that’s what being crazy is, then I’m senseless, out of it, gone-down-the-road, wacko. But no more, no less, that’s it.
Okay, I’ll make it as easy for you as I can. I’d like an omelet, plain, and a chicken salad sandwich on wheat toast, no mayonnaise, no butter, no lettuce. And a cup of coffee. … Yeah, now all you have to do is hold the chicken, bring me the toast, give me a check for the chicken salad sandwich, and you haven’t broken any rules. … I want you to hold it between your knees. … You see this sign?
I don’t know if you’d be particularly interested in hearing anything about me. My life, I mean… Most of it doesn’t add up to much… that I could relate as a way of life that you’d approve of…I’d like to be able to tell you why, but I don’t really…I mean, I move around a lot because things tend to get bad when I stay. And I’m looking…for auspicious beginnings, I guess…I’m trying to, you know, imagine your half of this conversation…My feeling is, that if you could talk, we probably wouldn’t be talking. That’s pretty much how it got to be before… I left…Are you all right? I don’t know what to say…Tita suggested that we try to…I don’t know. I think that she…seems to feel we’ve got…some understanding to reach…She totally denies the fact that we were never that comfortable with each other to begin with…The best that I can do, is apologize. We both know that I was never really that good at it, anyway…I’m sorry it didn’t work out.
Oh, yeah, that’s right. That’s what’s it’s all about, all right. But talkin’ about it and bein’ it, that’s two different things. I mean, it’s real hard to be free when you are bought and sold in the marketplace. Of course, don’t ever tell anybody that they’re not free, ’cause then they’re gonna get real busy killin’ and maimin’ to prove to you that they are. Oh, yeah, they’re gonna talk to you, and talk to you, and talk to you about individual freedom. But they see a free individual, it’s gonna scare ’em.