Friday, November 22, 2013

"Lee. Fifty years from now, they'll still be arguing about the grassy knoll, the Mafia, some Cuban crouched behind a stockade fence"

2012.01.22-IMG_0652

50 years now since the JFK assassination and it still holds a fascination for us ... quote above is from "November 22, 1963" by Stephen Sondheim and his play, Assassins.

OSWALD
I didn't come here to shoot the president.

BOOTH
He didn't come here to get shot...All your life you've been a victim, Lee. A victim of indifference and neglect. Of your mother's scorn, you're wife's contempt, of Soviet stupidity, American injustice. You've finally had enough, so how're you planning to get even? By becoming your own victim.

OSWALD
I am not a murderer.

BOOTH
Who said you were?

OSWALD
You just said I should kill the President.

BOOTH
Lee, when you kill a president, it isn't murder. Murder is a tawdry little crime; it's born of greed, or lust, or liquor. Adulterers and shopkeepers get murdered. But when a president gets killed, when Julius Caesar got killed -- he was assassinated. And the man who did it...

OSWALD
Brutus.

BOOTH
Ah! You know his name. Brutus assassinated Caesar -- what? -- two thousand years ago, and here's a high school drop-out with a dollar twenty-five an hour job in Dallas, Texas, who knows who he was. And they say fame is fleeting...

OSWALD
This is stupid. Up here on the sixth floor, what would I do? Throw school books at him?

BOOTH
What's in the package?

OSWALD
What package?

BOOTH
The package that you brought to work. What's in it?

OSWALD
Curtain rods.

BOOTH
You sure?

...

OSWALD
To who? To you?

(a chorus of "yes"s from the Assassins)

I'm responsible to me and no one else!

BOOTH
Not anymore, Lee. Fifty years from now, they'll still be arguing about the grassy knoll, the Mafia, some Cuban crouched behind a stockade fence, but this -- right here, right now -- this is the real conspiracy. And you're a part of it.

OSWALD
Get out of my way.

BOOTH
Listen to me, Lee. You have to do this. Now. You won't get another chance.

OSWALD
So what? So I'll do something else. I'll shoot my wife. I'll shoot my kids. I won't shoot anyone! Who cares?!

BOOTH
He wants to know who cares...I care, you stupid fool! We all care! Haven't you been listening, for Christ's sake?! Are you such a vapid, vacuous nonentity -

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