Friday, February 10, 2012

Three O'clock In The Morning

In the real dark night of the soul, it is always three o'clock in the morning, day after day.
F. Scott Fitzgerald

Sometimes, while watching a movie, I find some bit of dialogue that a screenwriter has written for a character resonating within me. This happen to me earlier this week while I was watching Infamous (2006). Infamous is about Truman Capote and his research into the the Clutter family murders in the small town of Holcomb, Kansas back in 1959. The information he gathered there became his best selling book In Cold Blood.

In one scene of the movie Capote and Nell Harper Lee are standing in field with a farmer who knew Herb Clutter, the head of the Clutter family. The farmer is giving examples of how Herb Clutter was a good and decent man when he pauses and says:

I've always believed that whenever you do something right it gives you a little bit of weight so that you come to feel rooted to this earth, you know? Solid. Secure. Now what scared me is that, well, sometimes, out of nowhere a bad wind blows up. Now it could be cancer, could be drink, could be some woman that don't belong to you. And despite the weight that's holding you to the ground when that wind comes, it picks you up light as a leaf and takes you were it wants. We're in control until we're not. Then we're helpless.

That, ladies and gentlemen, is someone describing the horror of his three o'clock morning moment. And isn't this realization, that we aren't in control of our lives the way we think we are, that in reality we are helpless, every soul's three o'clock in the morning?

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