The other day I was talking about Bette Davis looking around Joseph Cotton’s house and exclaiming “What a dump.” It got me to thinking of other famous movie lines. Why do we love them so? (Two of them are from my favorite philosopher, Mammy (Hattie McDaniel) from Gone With The Wind
What a dump.
Sometimes I get up and say that to my house especially if it’s in disarray and I have just visited a person who lives in a really good house while I still live in what the realtors like to call a ‘starter house.’ That’s realtor speak for “Let’s face it, that’s all you can afford.” My house can hardly be called a starter house since I have already had all the children I can have and they are out in the world with their own kids. I should be living in my “finish” house with all the money I accumulated. Where is that money by the way?
Most times I LOVE my house especially in winter when the big fat iron radiators are scalding hot and the rooms are like a sauna. When I come home after a trip I say, “Hello, my friend. I missed you.”
You can’t handle the truth.
My first response is, “You’re right.” I can’t handle the truth. There are all kinds of truths. Some truths are always changing and some never change. If the truth has to do with my self-delusional mistakes where I wasn’t paying attention or just let whatever happened happen, then I need a shot of whiskey before absorbing it. After about a minute, having fortified myself, I would let the truth wash over me and seep into my consciousness and if I don’t die on the spot I guess I can handle the truth.
You done had a baby, Miss Scarlett and you ain’t never going to be no 18.5 inches (in the waist) again. Never. And there ain’t nothing to do about it.
The speech Mammy gives to Scarlett after the birth of Bonnie is a good reminder that once we’ve had a baby we will probably not ever have Gisele Bundchen’s butt no matter how many squats go down. More important, our girlish consciousness will be replaced by a gritty (grim?) confidence. We have been to a strange place. Even Snookie got it. “It’s different now,” she said.
Mr. Rhett you is bad!
What’s that rustling noise I hear? “
Lawdy Mr. Rhett that ain’t nothing but my red silk petticoat you done give me.
Nothing but your petticoat? I don’t believe it, let me see … pull up your skirt.”
Mr. Rhett you is bad. Yo lawdy hoo hoo!”
We love a bad boy. Always have, always will. I’ll take a bad boy anytime.
I don’t know nothin’ bout birthin’ babies!”
Who hasn’t exaggerated on the resume only to have it come back and bite.
Prissy could have walked a little faster to get the doctor.
You complete me.
I have never heard this quoted with any seriousness. It’s always a joke as it should be. We come into this world complete and we leave it complete. Any missing parts have to be self-generated.
(This notion that we need another person to complete us is one of the more misguided myths alive today. The origins of the “soulmate” are found in the writings of Plato who surmised that there was once a “super race” comprising both male and female in one person. They were getting too powerful so Zeus cut each of them in two. This forceful separation left both halves desperate to be reunited.)
Love is never having to say you’re sorry.
This ridiculous idea is exactly what was wrong with the Fifties and even the Sixties and Seventies. The truth according to MGM. Wrong. Unrealistic. Delusional.
Oops how did that get in here although if there’s a better example of a good working marriage than George and Louise Jefferson's, I can’t think of it.