Northern Exposure s06e18 Episode Script

Little Italy

The acetaminophen should help.
Just keep her in bed, give her plenty of fluids.
She should be up and around by the weekend.
Thank you, Doctor.
Okay.
I'll check in with you tomorrow.
Chris! Chris! Hey, what's up? Smell that.
Do you smell that? Am I burning oil again? No, no, no, nothing like that.
I'm thinking the wind shifted.
What are we shooting for, Doc? It's a cooking smell.
Onions.
Gemma's sauce.
That's what it is.
It's my Aunt Gemma's spaghetti sauce.
I don't believe it.
Aunt Gemma's spaghetti sauce.
Spaghetti sauce, huh? No, not just any sauce.
My Aunt Gemma's spaghetti sauce.
The way they used to make it in our part of the old country.
Razor-sliced garlic, bay leaves, veal bones.
Who'd be cooking like that here? Beats me.
Boy, I'd give anything to know where that smell was coming from.
Well, I've got to get over to Cantwell.
Little Italy.
What? You were in Little Italy.
Little Italy? In this town? There's a Little Italy? On the corner of Caribou and Third.
Four houses.
Used to be five.
You're kidding.
There are four Italian families here? The Cusomanos, the Grippos, the Trapanis, and the Masellos.
Cusomanos.
Wait a minute.
Joe Cusomano.
The peptic ulcer.
That Cusomano.
Uh-huh.
Tell me about the others.
Well, there's Cesare Trapani, he's retired.
Bob Masello, he writes service manuals for Olivetti.
And Lowell Grippo, he's got a contracting firm.
And a restaurant.
A restaurant? Well, it's not much of a restaurant.
Stella Del Nord.
Well, how come I never heard of this place? Don't get your gonads in an uproar, Capra.
It's not much of a restaurant.
Momma Grippo just occasionally cooks a little extra and serves some friends in the basement, that's all.
Well, that sounds great.
What's the number? It's unlisted.
They only serve people they know, anyway.
Well, how 'bout it, Maurice, are you gonna put in a word for me? Maybe.
We'll see.
I'd really appreciate it, Maurice.
He likes to keep it a secret.
Why? He thinks success will spoil it.
This is All Things Considered, I'm Robert SiegeI.
Now, the view from Cicely.
Not the balmy Mediterranean isle, but Cicely, Alaska, where Ruth-Anne Miller, age 76, runs a store that sells a wide assortment of goods to a wide assortment of characters.
Quiet, back there! I want to tell you about the time my friend, Chris Stevens, flung a piano with a medievaI siege weapon known as a trebuchet.
Chris is our locaI DJ.
A self-taught, ex-con, maiI-order minister, with a passion for the transcendent.
All right.
The piano in question was a 1943 Baldwin upright, good, solid mahogany, which had been hauled all the way to Alaska from Last Chance, Idaho Ed knew that Maggie ended up with this piano and had little use for it.
Chris got it free of charge and the fling was on.
Chris told us all to meet him out at Ivory Springer's farm, where he where it flew into space, leaving a vapor traiI of broken keys in its wake.
And when at last it fell to Earth and broke into a million pieces, our spirits were elsewhere.
Somewhere still aloft, in the clouds.
Ruth-Anne Miller writes Tales of Cicely She comes to us via radio station KBHR.
And this is NPR, NationaI Public Radio.
Ruth-Anne Miller! Do you really think we should do this? Well, why not? Maurice said it was in the basement.
You know, I've been dying for an Italian meal since we left LA.
Even there, it was all that northern Italian cooking, you know, Tuscan.
All that risotto, and polenta, and white beans.
Oh, I'm telling you, this sauce was as red as your nail polish.
This sauce was home.
Yes? Hi, is Momma cooking tonight? Scusi? This is Stella Del Nord, right? We are not serving tonight.
What is that I smell? Is that eggplant parmigiana? Signore, Signore, please.
I'm Phil Capra.
I'm the town doctor.
My wife and I were hoping for a home-cooked meal tonight.
Capra? Calabrese.
Please, come in.
Grazie.
Benvenuto.
Oh, my God.
Signora? Thank you.
Thank you.
Enjoy.
Thank you.
Would you like to see the wine list? Yes, please.
Phil.
Maurice.
Thank you.
Oh, hi, Ruth-Anne.
Celebrating her radio debut.
Walt.
I recommend the ptarmigan cacciatore.
What they do with wild game here This wine list is incredible.
Yes, sir.
We'd like the number 136, please.
The Brunello.
Excellent.
Smoked buffalo mozzarella, roasted peppers, clams oreganato.
Enjoy.
Thank you.
I'm in heaven.
I have died and gone to heaven.
Third time's a charm, so they say.
Order's up.
Shelly.
Didn't you follow the directions I wrote out? Well, it's connecting, but it doesn't seem to wanna work.
Did you enter the last four numbers of Hayden's card? The last four? Hayden, I'm gonna void this out and start over, okay? I just wanna get out of here.
It's a new machine.
We've had it a week, Holling.
Well, uh Miranda's going to know how to use this before you do.
That Holling, he never gets mad at Shelly.
Uh-huh.
And she can get on him, all he does is smile.
You take my tables, H.
I'll take the register, or pretty soon we'll be serving these people breakfast.
Yeah.
Sign here, Hayden.
Good idea.
Oh! I can't move.
Me neither.
Momma's special cookies.
Oh, please, we couldn't.
No, no, no, just one.
Just one.
You know, my Aunt Gemma used to make cookies just like this.
Where are you from, Lowell? In Calabria, I mean.
Catanzaro.
Catanzaro? Please, you must let me buy you a drink.
Honey, Catanzaro! Yes? My mother's family is from Catanzaro.
No! Si! Ma! Ma! Ma, come here, Ma.
Meet a nice boy from Catanzaro.
Ah, fantastic meal.
Yes, fabulous.
Good.
Good, grazie.
Ma says you need to come back more often.
Well, we'd love to.
Lowell, do you like cigars? I stopped off on the way over and I picked up two fine cigars.
Please Phil, it's late.
I'm sure Mr.
Grippo Partagas.
Ah, my favorite.
Good.
Calogero, bring us some grappa.
The best.
I can't believe it.
Both from Catanzaro.
We're compari.
Heard you on the radio.
Did you? Hope the next one's funnier.
Well, I'll try.
Okay, bye.
Bye.
Hey, Marilyn.
Hi.
Hey, Ruth-Anne, getting lots of good feedback down at the station.
Me, too.
It's funny, some people really dig the thematic subtext.
The what? Well, the way you linked the Christ imagery with the reborn piano.
I did no such a thing, Chris.
Unintentionally, maybe.
I was just trying to tell a good yarn.
Well, you know, Ruth-Anne, art operates on lots of different levels, and all I know is the semiotic crowd can't wait till your next piece.
Hey, did those Hot Tamales come in? Aisle two.
So this is it, huh? Little Italy.
Yeah.
My father, a stone mason, came to Anchorage in '39 to build a cathedral.
The archdiocese never happened, of course.
The old man fell in love with this country.
Ended up in farming.
Broccoli, mostly.
What about the Trapanis? Nuclear physicist out of Chicago.
No kidding! Yeah.
Worked with Fermi on the Manhattan Project.
Now he's retired mostly, but keeps his hand in by modem, you know.
And the Cusomanos? You know Joe Cusomano? Yeah, he's a patient.
No kidding.
What's he in for? Well, I'm really not supposed to say, Lowell All right, all right, that's okay.
As long as it's painful and terminal.
What? Our families haven't exactly socialized in years.
Is that right? Look, he's got the Christmas lights up still.
What a cafone.
The Feast of San Giuseppe in three days, and he's still got his lights up.
You wanna see something? Come here.
Look at this.
Cusomano's dog.
He's got an entire national forest for a backyard, lets his dog use my front lawn as a pisciatoio.
Hey! Hey! What do you think you're doing? What does it look like I'm doing? I don't know.
You don't know? I don't know! You don't know? If I see your dog in my yard again, I'm going to take a backhoe to your solarium.
What? You heard me.
Your first-edition James Joyce, that phony Chagall litho.
Mulch! History! Hold me! Somebody hold me! Or what? Come on! Joey! Joe, remember your ulcer.
Take it easy, okay? Hey, ulcer! How nice! Your wife must be cooking for you again.
Son of a Joey! You with him? Yeah, he's with me.
You want to do something about it? No, no, no.
I'm not with anybody.
Come on, do something about it.
I should have known.
Well, what's that supposed to mean? You call that an exam you gave me last week? You didn't even scope me.
I didn't have to, your symptoms were classic.
Don't argue with him, he doesn't know anything.
I don't know anything, huh? I know I'm not getting any better.
Maybe if I had an Ivy League physician I'd see some results.
Well, maybe if you cut back on the Scotch, I wouldn't have to prescribe Zantac every damn week, all right? Now we know where we stand.
Everybody into the house! Oh, I shouldn't have said that.
Oh, come on, what are you gonna do with people like that? Come on, I'll make you a nice espresso.
Come on.
Don't worry about this guy.
Ma, would you please? Give me a break, already.
Like I don't know acute gastritis when I see it.
Ah, he's a cafone.
Don't worry The guy's killing himself and blaming me.
You insulted him? He insulted me first.
You should apologize, Phil.
Why? Well, because Joe Cusomano is your patient.
So? So, you shouldn't get involved in a tiff between him and Lowell Grippo.
It is not a tiff, Michelle.
It may be less than a vendetta, but it's definitely more than a tiff.
Well, even worse.
Well, don't worry about it, I'm not that involved.
Ah, here we are.
You're not involved? You trade insults with the man, he threatens you.
You're involved, honey.
I think that you should apologize, Phil.
I'll apologize to him when he apologizes to me.
You know, Joey's wife, Angela, is a friend of mine.
He brought it on himself, Michelle.
Well, wait, I thought it all began when Lowell kicked snow on Cusomano's property.
Because Cusomano's dog peed in Lowell's yard.
Oh Cusomano's a cafone, all right? He's low-class.
He's a peasant.
Says who? Says Lowell, and Lowell is mi compare.
So what about Cusomano? Isn't he your goombah, too? I thought you said he's Calabrese.
No, Cusomano's not Calabrese.
He's Campanese.
From Campania, it's a whole different region.
Calabria is in, like, the toe of Italy.
Campania is on, like, the lower shin.
Oh, well, that makes a lot of difference.
It does.
It's like comparing Cleveland and Cincinnati.
I mean, you're either a Browns fan or you're a Bengals fan, you can't be both.
Do you know how ridiculous you sound right now? I'm just getting back to my roots, that's all.
Your roots, Phil? God, the only time you act even remotely Italian is after you've seen a Scorsese picture.
That is not true.
It is true.
You don't even speak the language.
Oh Oh, okay, restaurant Italian.
Look, the ball is in Cusomano's court, all right? If he wants to apologize to me, fine.
If not Hey, do we have my mother's recipe for zeppole? Remember those little fried dough things? I promised Lowell that we'd man a booth with him at the Feast of San Giuseppe.
Hey, Ruth-Anne.
Working on your next piece? Uh-huh.
You know, Ruth-Anne, I was thinking.
People are really fascinated by bush pilots.
No, really.
Whenever I'm in Michigan, people can't get enough of my stories.
Well, I mean, not that I'm a writer like you, of course, but I have had all these really interesting experiences.
Close calls, unusual passengers.
So, I don't know, I was just sort of thinking that maybe you and I could sit down and I could give you my material and you could write it up.
Oh, maybe I should come back another time.
If you wouldn't mind.
Sorry.
Okay.
Hello, Ruth-Anne.
Mind if I join you? Frankly, yes.
What's this? Open it.
I don't want to open it.
Oh.
Well, all right, I will.
You know, we may have our hands on a very powerful franchise here.
Your little radio talks may just be the tip of the iceberg, young lady.
Take a look at this.
"Tales of Cicely: The Catalog"? Yeah, that Garrison Keillor fella, he had the right idea before he flipped out and moved to Sweden.
His Lake Wobegon merchandise is a marketing bonanza.
I'm not interested in marketing, Maurice.
Oh, come on, Ruth-Anne, your shelves could be teeming with Tales of Cicely merchandise.
Never underestimate the ability of the American public to buy tee-shirts.
Not to mention coffee mugs, beach towels, refrigerator magnets.
Why don't you just take that and go? Oh, come on.
Think about it.
I don't have to.
I think it's a terrible idea.
Any luck? Nothing.
What's up, babe? Darnedest thing.
You know those little Italian flag centerpieces we used to use for the Feast of San Giuseppe? I can't find them anywhere.
That's because I threw them out.
What? Well, last month, I was going through the cellar, just in a cleaning mood, I guess.
You threw them out? Well, there's a lot of junk down there, Holling.
I liked those flags, Shelly.
Those flags have been a part of this bar for as long as I've been here.
I What I mean to say is, what are we gonna use for centerpieces instead? Well, we haven't had a feast in eight years, Holling.
It always gets canceled at the last minute.
Still Besides, we never make any money off of it.
I don't know why we even stay open.
By the time people get here after the parade, they're so stuffed with sausages, all they want is a bromo and a nap.
Fiddlesticks! What? Nothing.
I'm fine.
Yeah.
I'm just fine.
You talking to me? You talking to me? That's a good one.
I got one for you, here you go.
What are you doin'? Don't overcook the steak.
It's like charcoal, it defeats its own purpose.
Bring it over here! Raging Bull.
Excellent.
Can I get you something, Joe? A ream of computer paper and a half a pound of provolone.
Whoa.
Great.
Oh! Please, stop! Thank God.
Angela.
Hey, Angela! I think I just need a jump.
I've got some cables, Angela, if you could just pull around.
Do you know what your husband said to my Joey? Yeah, I heard about it.
In front of that no-good Grippo, no less? Yeah, but what does that have to He had no right to talk like that.
Maybe not, Angela, um There'll be other cars.
What? You're not going, are you? Come on! You're my friend.
Maybe I'll radio the service station.
Angela.
What he said Angela, wait! Tequila sunrise.
I'm waiting.
Waiting for what? What do you think? An apology.
You? I'm the one who should get an apology.
I'm not the one who punched out a moose and embarrassed his wife in front of the entire town.
What did I do to you? If you don't know, I'm not going to tell.
Oh, really? There's no point in talking to you.
Tequila sunrise.
I don't believe it.
I do not believe it.
It's got to stop, Phil.
Did you hear me? This has gone far enough.
Lowell, Phil.
Yeah.
Listen, you're not going to believe this.
Michelle was out on Route 6, taking pictures, right? Her car wouldn't start.
Angela Cusomano pulls over, she sees that it's Michelle, and she just drives right off.
She just leaves her out there in the open.
Yeah, she could have been frozen to death, or eaten by a bear Phil! Let me tell you something, my friend.
You were right.
Cafone is too nice a word for those people.
Hang on one second, he wants to talk to you.
Hi, Lowell.
No, I'm fine.
Really.
No, Phil is exaggerating.
She called the gas station, they came right out Well, gee, that's awfully nice, Lowell, but we have dinner plans for tonight.
No, we don't.
I don't want to go.
Michelle, give me the phone.
I Give me Lowell, we'd love to come over.
Okay, ciao.
Perfect.
Michelle, you don't insult a man when he invites you to his house for dinner.
It's disrespectful.
Oh, excuse me, Godfather.
Phil, I don't want to go out.
I want you to call Joe Cusomano and tell him you're sorry and just forget this whole thing.
After what they did to you? Eh! And what is this "Eh"? This Italian stuff is driving me nuts, Phil.
It's time to come home! See, that's what you don't understand.
In the middle of nowhere, in Cicely, Alaska, I have finally found my home.
The Grippos are not family, Phil.
You barely know them.
Look, I know this seems strange to you, but some things you don't have to know.
Some things you just have to feel.
Holling, Shelly, what a surprise.
May we come in? Yes, I was just heading down to the movie theater.
See? I told you we should have called first.
Oh, no, no, no, it's okay.
I mean, I've got a minute.
What can I do for you? I mean, you want to sit down? I'll let Holling tell you.
It was his idea.
Well, we were wondering if you could help settle a domestic dispute.
What? In your capacity, you know, as the mayor, I mean.
Uh, I recall mediating several squabbles when I was mayor myself.
It's in the charter, you know, under mayoral powers.
Being isolated like we are here, you know, the mayor is somewhat like the captain of a ship.
You can perform marriages, you know.
Act as a judge, and then there's that clause about ensuring domestic tranquility.
Well, um Have a seat.
I mean, if it's in the charter, I'll certainly give it a try.
So what seems to be the problem? So, how are you coming with your Saint Joseph's Day plans? I spoke to my mother this morning, she gave me her recipe for zeppole.
Let me tell you, my friend, if we get some Amerena cherries, we are in business.
Excellent.
It's really a big deal here, huh? The feast? Oh, yeah, yeah.
That is, if the Cusomanos don't spoil it like they do every year.
What do you mean? It's always something with them.
They got to carry Saint Joseph, or they don't have enough booth space, whatever.
We've had to cancel eight years in a row.
How did this get started? The feud, I mean.
It was la busta.
I'm sorry? Tell her.
Well, when somebody dies, it's customary for the family to give a busta.
It's like a boost, to help the family defray the funeral expenses, you know.
So eight years ago, when Grandma Grippo, rest her soul, passed away, Joe Cusomano gave us an envelope of $5.
No, $5? I should have stopped speaking to that lousy bum right then.
But I got an idea.
I'm going to build a wall, eight feet high, between the two houses.
In fact, I'm going to sneak in on his side of the property.
Good, good.
What, Ma? She wants to show you her new dress.
Oh, come here, sweetheart.
Come on, come on, come on, show Nonno.
Oh, look how beautiful.
Ah, che bella.
It's for the feast.
It's bedtime now.
Give Nonno a kiss.
Buona notte.
Excuse me, but I just can't believe what I'm seeing here.
I mean, one minute you're plotting against your neighbor, and the next, you're fawning all over a little girl's patron dress for a Catholic holiday honoring the patron saint of all families, of community.
Yeah? I'm sorry about the change of venue, it's just that we're a little shorthanded tonight.
So who wants to start first? Go ahead, Holling.
You're the one who wanted to do this.
Well, I Well, I suppose it goes all the way back to April of last year.
April? A year ago? You remember those videotapes you didn't return, like you said you would? Unforgiven and My Little Pony, as I recall.
So what? It costs us $2 in extra rental fees.
But that's not the point.
The point is Shelly told me she was going to return those tapes.
Now I could have taken them myself.
In fact, I had business at Ruth-Anne's later that day.
But I just assumed that Shelly was going to do what she said she would.
And that made you mad? Well, what really made me mad was later, when I was pointing this out to Shelly, politely, I might add.
You know what she said? "Big wow.
" Yeah.
So? Well, and Holling, what did you say? Nothing.
I just returned the tapes the next day.
Ancient history.
Anyway, about two weeks later, I was taking this photography course in Cantwell, over at the community college.
Holling, could you hand me that popcorn? Sorry.
Thank you.
Anyway, one Sunday, I came back early because Shelly told me that we were having dinner with Walt and Ruth-Anne.
And so I came back in a rush, got home, Shelly wasn't there.
She'd gone to a movie with Marilyn instead.
So, I forgot.
Shoot me.
What did you say then, Holling? Nothing.
Holling, you know what I want you to do? I want you to pretend that Shelly's not here, okay? Not here? Uh-huh.
And I want you to tell me what you'd like to tell Shelly if you could.
Well, um I guess what I'd like to say is sometimes you make me mad, you know? Yes.
What did I tell you? Huh? I talked to you before, didn't I? Huh? Didn't I say, "Don't go out and buy anything?" Didn't I say, "Don't buy anything, don't get anything.
Nothing big"? What's the matter with you, huh? It's a wedding present, Jimmy.
It's under my mother's name.
I don't care whose name it's under.
What's the matter with you? You stupid or what? I apologize.
What's the matter with you? I'm sorry, Jimmy.
Are you nuts? What's the matter with you? What It's Robert De Niro.
Goodfellas.
I'm going to lunch.
Okay, whoa, whoa.
Don't we have a 12:00? Canceled.
Oh? Who was it? Joe Cusomano.
Canceled? Uh-huh.
What do you mean he canceled? What, all of a sudden his stomach isn't hurting anymore? He has to come in, Marilyn.
How could I treat him, if he won't let me see him? What does he want? A perforated ulcer? Sorry.
What the hell's the matter with him? I apologize, Jimmy.
Okay, that's enough, all right? It was a wedding present.
That's enough, already.
Sorry, Jimmy.
That's enough with the De Niro, already.
I'm tired of it.
Oh! Sorry, Dr.
Capra.
Tales of Cicely, take one.
I want to tell you about my friend, Holling Vincoeur, and a bear named Jesse.
I Hey, Ruth-Anne! Don't forget the ice sculpture! I'm sorry, Chris.
Could we start over? Sure, we'll just let it roll.
Tales of Cicely, take two.
I want to tell you about Look at that.
Suddenly everyone wants to get cutesy just to get into one of my stories.
I haven't seen Bobby Spellman on that thing in years.
Hey! Enough! Bob, get off that contraption right now! I'm not doing it! Hon, could you get that, please? I'm neck deep in zeppole, here.
Hello? Hey! Hello Lowell.
I'm afraid he's busy right now.
Really? Oh, that's too bad.
Yeah, I'll tell him.
I'm sure he'll want to call you back.
Okay, thanks, Lowell.
Mmm-hmm, bye.
That was Lowell, honey.
He and Cusomano had words today.
The feast is canceled, Phil.
Oh.
Hi, Shelly.
Hey.
Is Holling around? He's taking a walk with Randi.
Oh, good.
Listen, I think I've got this whole thing figured out.
The reason Holling exploded the other day is I think he doesn't know how to express anger with you.
I mean, he loves you, Shelly.
He doesn't want to upset you, so consequently he tends to keep everything inside.
I know.
You do? He lets me get away with murder.
You know that? Sure.
And I feel bad about it, too, sometimes, but I just can't help it, Maggie.
I hate apologizing.
It's such an un-chick-like thing to do.
"I'm sorry.
" I mean, I know there's plenty of times when I'm wrong, and Holling should just blow his stack, but I know if I don't cop to it, he'll just let it slide.
So what you're saying is, you knowingly take advantage of Holling's emotional vulnerability? Yeah.
Kinda.
Oh, Shelly, that's not a very healthy pattern, I mean, especially for Holling.
I know.
Well, as mayor, I suggest that you sit down with Holling and let him air all of his grievances.
And apologize.
Do I have to? Gentlemen, please.
Cesare Trapani.
And the other one? Running Bear Masello.
Siciliano on his grandfather's side.
Well, gentlemen, let's begin.
Before we start, I would like to thank our good friend, Dr.
Capra, here, for calling a meeting of the four families.
Thank you.
It's been much too long since we last broke bread together.
I only came out of respect for you, Cesare.
As for certain others We all have to talk.
That's right.
About what? Lowell, for the ninth year in a row now, you've canceled the Feast of San Giuseppe.
Huh.
As for you, Joe, your family abandoned my wife in a time of need.
What about you? I'm guilty, too.
I let a valued patient refuse treatment for a serious medical condition.
And why? Spite.
That's right.
The old country ways.
What's wrong with us? Is that why we came all the way to America, to this town? We Italians invented the vendetta.
I don't know, maybe that's a good thing.
Some people never invented anything.
What I mean is that we're a passionate people.
That's what makes us great painters, great poets.
Makers of what everyone acknowledges are the world's finest shoes.
We're emotional, we're a people of honor, we're easily insulted.
But this can get in the way.
Turn brother against brother.
We never turn the other cheek.
We love to hang on to our pain.
What is that supposed to mean? What went on this week is neurotic behavior.
I myself, I was responding to a deep yet unacknowledged feeling of homesickness, isolation.
But this is the frontier.
We need to put our differences aside and work together.
I don't know.
I never put much credence into this melting pot theory.
Not gonna start defending multiculturalism to me again, are you? If you would reread your Moynihan and your Glazer, you would understand my objection to Dr.
Capra's plea for assimilation.
The trouble with the melting pot, some people melt, others get scalded.
When Fermi and I came here to this country, you learned English and that was that.
There was none of this "English as a second language.
" Gentlemen, please.
I didn't come here to moderate a discussion on the changing views of the immigrant experience.
I just want to put this feast back on track.
Now, what do you say? Can we put this feud aside? You expect me to forget what he did at my grandmother's funeral? What? What? You give me a busta of $5 and you say "what?" Five? There was 25 bills in that envelope when I gave it to my cousin to deliver.
You remember.
It was your brother-in-law's kid.
Anthony.
Not Anthony.
The kid thought he'd cut himself in.
I wondered how he could afford that Raiders jacket.
Lowell, I'm ashamed.
Dr.
Capra, with all respect, I believe this is a matter the four families must now discuss among themselves.
When are you going to reschedule with Chris, Ruth-Anne? I don't think I'm going to do any more radio spots, Ed.
Early burnout, huh? No, nothing like that.
I just did it to have fun.
But people have taken the fun right out of it.
They all want to get their two cents' worth in, you know.
Some even want to cash in somehow.
Get a piece of the action.
It's not worth it.
Oh.
All right, you want to know the truth? You want to direct? The truth, Ed, is I'm scared.
The first piece was such a hit, and now everybody expects so much.
Sophomore slump.
You mean there's a name for it? Oh, sure, happens to all kinds of people, Ruth-Anne.
Steven Soderbergh, he made Sex, Lies and Videotape.
That took the Palme d'Or at Cannes.
It took him a long time to come out with his second picture.
What was his second picture? Kafka.
Oh.
Paul Brickman? Risky Business? Now that was a smash hit.
He fell off the map for five years.
Even me, Ruth-Anne.
Remember that short film I made three years ago? Uh-huh, and it won honorable mention at a student film festival, didn't it? If Bogdanovich hadn't gotten on my case, I don't think I ever would have finished the shaman script.
You know what I learned? That good reviews can be more damaging than bad ones.
Don't take yourself too seriously.
And get your second project done as quickly as possible so you can move on to your third.
Hmm.
Good.
That's good.
You're sure you want to do this, now.
Yeah.
I'm sure.
Well, there was that time that I mentioned before, you know, about the videotapes.
Right, I'm sorry.
In September you ruined my good number-three wood chisel, when you used it to remove the kitchen tile.
Sorry.
Oh, yeah, here.
There was that time that you gave away my old hunting jacket without asking.
It smelled.
I'm sorry.
Now, I don't know why this sticks in my mind, but it does.
July of '92? We'd just come back from a trip to Sleetmute.
You know, the most frequently asked question we get about your pieces is, where do you get your materiaI? Mostly by looking out the window.
Really? Is that true? Absolutely.
Well, what's going on there now, for example? Right now, I'm watching the parade for the Feast of San Giuseppe coming up the street.
First time in nine years.
Why is that? Well, it's a long story.
And one we'd like to hear sometime, too.
But right now we're out of time.
Ruth-Anne, may I call you again? Anytime, Robert.
Thank you, Ruth-Anne.
Tales of Cicely is a regularly produced feature for All Things Considered.
Ruth-Anne Miller comes to us courtesy of radio station KBHR in Cicely, Alaska.
I'm Robert SiegeI, and this is NPR, NationaI Public Radio.
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Hi.
Nice to see you.
Hey, Doc.