As I was posting that last item, yet another question popped into my head: what snippet of old-movie dialogue would I most like to have written? While I adore the Bogart-Rains scene in Casablanca to which I made reference, there’s no doubt in my mind about the one I’d pick:
There’s a speed limit in this state, Mr. Neff, 45 miles an hour.
How fast was I going, Officer?
I’d say around 90.
Suppose you get down off your motorcycle and give me a ticket.
Suppose I let you off with a warning this time.
Suppose it doesn’t take.
Suppose I have to whack you over the knuckles.
Suppose I bust out crying and put my head on your shoulder.
Suppose you try putting it on my husband’s shoulder.
Excuse the hell out of me for being a philistine, but I’d rather have written that than anything by Shirley Hazzard. Or Martin Amis, for that matter. Or just about any novel written after approximately 1975, to be perfectly honest (there are exceptions). I guess I’ve got a film-noir soul, which is pretty funny considering how hopelessly bourgeois I am.
What about you, OGIC? What scene would you pick?