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A monologue from the play by William Saroyan
This is it. [Goes; into the act, with much energy.] I’m up at Sharkey’s on Turk Street. It’s a quarter to nine, daylight saving.
Wednesday, the eleventh. What I’ve got is a headache and a 1918 nickel. What I want is a cup of coffee. If I buy a cup of coffee with the nickel, I’ve got to walk home.
I’ve got an eight-ball problem. George the Greek is shooting a game of snooker with Pedro the Filipino.
I’m in rags. They’re wearing thirty-five dollar suits, made to order. I haven’t got a cigarette. They’re smoking Bobby Burns panatelas.
I’m thinking it over, like I always do. George the Greek is in a tough spot. If I buy a cup of coffee. I’ll want another cup.
What happens? My ear aches! My ear. George the Greek takes the cue. Chalks it. Studies the table. Touches the cue-ball delicately. Tick.
What happens? He makes the three-ball! What do I do? I get confused. I go out and buy a morning paper. What the hell do I want with a morning paper?
What I want is a cup of coffee, and a good used car. I go out and buy a morning paper. Thursday, the twelfth.
Maybe the headline’s about me. I take a quick look. No. The headline is not about me. It’s about Hitler. Seven thousand miles away.
I’m here. Who the hell is Hitler? Who’s behind the eight-ball? I turn around. Everybody’s behind the eight-ball!
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