Saturday, June 21, 2008
TR (ANNC): And now. The story of one man, his mother, and the 8.6 miles of copper wire that separate them. It's Duane, The Chosen Son.
(PHONE RINGS 3X, PICKUP)
SS: Duane? Gosh honey I just
GK: Mom— before you start in, could I just say something?
SS: "Start in" — what does that mean?
GK: I know you're calling about the trip to Ohio, Mom, and look, it's a great idea, but I'm trying to finish a book and I just can't say yes right now. Okay?
SS: Are you on drugs, honey?
GK: I'm fine.
SS: I ask because that's a symptom of crystal meth use, Duane. Lashing out. You lash out and you also lose your teeth.
GK: I'm not on crystal meth, mother.
SS: Because if you're not coming, then we need to arrange for someone to lift the wheelchair.
GK: A wheelchair!!!! You're in a wheelchair???
SS: I shouldn't have mentioned it. Just put it out of your mind.
GK: Mother— are you in a wheelchair right now? Yes or no.
SS: No, but I'm going to get one. A motorized one. It's called the Jazz Penguin and it's blue.
GK: What's wrong? Why do you need a Jazz Penguin?
SS: Well— I fell yesterday.
GK: You fell.
SS: Yes. I fell.
GK: Are you alright?
SS: Well. That depends on what you mean by "all right."
GK: Why are you going to Ohio, Mother?
SS: Well, your father wants to visit the Tire Museum in Akron. It's a spiritual pull for him, Duane. And I want to go see the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland. So.
GK: I didn't know you liked Rock and Roll, Mom.
SS: Well I don't. But they have a big new exhibit on RocknRoll stars who died young and how they died and they're showing the clothes they died in and it just sounded interesting to me. I just thought I should see it so I know what not to wear.
GK: Isn't that a little morbid?
SS: No more so than these people who tour Civil War battlefields.
GK: It's just a strange reason to go to a Rock and Roll Museum —
SS: Well, for your information, I was a big fan of the Bluebirds. A band of rock and roll.
GK: I never heard of them, Mom.
SS: That's because they died young. Right after their first big hit— (SHE SINGS) I've got a feeling...my life will not last…..Time is going…by so fast……we'll reach the top and...gain fortune and fame...and then we'll crash….and burn in the flames…… Oooooooooo
GK: And they died in a car crash, the Bluebirds?
SS: No, they were attacked by dogs.
SS: German Shepards, jumped out at them as they were having a nice picnic and chewed them to pieces. I'm getting all choked up, thinking about it. (TR MURMURS) Talk to your dad, Duane, I've got to go blow my nose. (OFF) Here Hank. Take the phone. Don't twist the cord, Hank. Now you've got it all tangled. Take it. Take it.
TR (MIDWESTERN): Hello son.
GK: Hi dad.
TR (MIDWESTERN): Hear you might come with us to Ohio.
GK: I don't know. I'm sort of working on a book.
TR (MIDWESTERN): Oh. (LONG BEAT) You don't want to see the Erie Canal.
GK: I do but I'm a little busy dad. But you and mom should have fun—
TR (MIDWESTERN): 83 locks. 18 aqueducts. Gonna be something.
GK: I thought the Erie Canal was all filled in.
TR (MIDWESTERN): Nope. Still there. Gonna drive along it. Good times.
GK: You okay otherwise, dad?
TR (MIDWESTERN): Oh I guess. Good enough.
GK: That's good to hear.
TR (MIDWESTERN): Well good talking to you son.
GK: Bye dad.
TR (MIDWESTERN): I'll get your mother here-
SS (MIDWESTERN, OFF): Give me the phone, Hank, give it to me-(ON PHONE) Duane honey, are you still there?
GK: I'm here, mom.
SS: So I'll pack some green grapes and we'll bring sudoku and whatever CDs you want to listen to in the car, it's okay. Your choice. Duane's choice. I've still got the Lionel Ritchie from last time—
GK: Mom, I'm not coming.
SS: Duane, this may be our last chance to take a family car trip.
GK: Mom, you're perfectly healthy.
SS: Remember Mr. Munson?
GK: Not the Mr. Munson story.
SS: Sixty-five years old. Healthy, strong as a bull.
GK: I know, mom, I've heard it.
SS: And his leg hurt and he went to the doctor and it was a big leg tumor and he was dead in a week.
GK: Does your leg hurt?
SS: My leg has hurt for twenty-five years. And you're just asking about it now? Why don't you just say the real reason, Duane? It's because you hate us and you can't stand to be around us.
GK: Mom, that's not true.
SS: We make you miserable and angry and you know something? Why suffer any more? You might as well just bury us in sand, Duane. Up to our necks.
GK: Bury you in sand?
SS: (CRACKS) Up to our necks. Out by the bluffs where the cougars live.
GK: Oh, please.
SS: And they'll come sniffing around and they'll rip our heads off, like you always wanted to, Duane, and then the vultures will eat the rest.
GK: Mother, I mean really.
SS: They'll have to tunnel down, but they'll get it. And then you can have the car, Duane.
SS (MIDWESTERN ON PHONE): You can have the car and drive it wherever you want and go find your bliss, Duane. Because you never found it with us. You never did (SOBS)
GK: I'll go to Cleveland.
SS: You will?
GK: I will mom. I'll go as far as Cleveland. Okay? And you can continue on.
SS: Oh I don't want to make you do something you don't want to do, Duane. I'm done with that. Just do what you want.
GK: It's okay mom, I have a friend there, so I'll just come to Cleveland and it'll be fine.
SS: What, a lady friend?
GK: Mom, she's just a friend, okay? That's all.
SS: Well whatever it is I'll just pack the grapes and the juice boxes and we'll come by to pick you up tomorrow.
GK: Okay mom. Love you.
SS: Bye now Duane.
GK: Bye now.