Monday, January 29, 2018

Surreal Conversation

Sorry, missed Lancelot Link this week!

From 2007...

So, I’m talking to a friend of mine, guy I’ve known for almost ten years, telling him that I’m on my way out of town for the holidays because there’s Thanksgiving and Christmas and New Years and in the middle of it all one of my nieces is getting married - so I might as well stay the whole danged month, and he asks...

“Where you going to stay?” he asks.

“At my parent’s house - in my old room,” I answer.

“Your real parents?”

“Well, yeah.” (?)

“So, you know who they are?”

“I’m not understanding what you’re saying,” is he implying my parents are fake?

“You know who your biological parents are - and you’re going to stay with them. Does that bother your other parents?”

“What other parents?” (One set of parents is enough... sometimes more than enough.)

“You know, the people who raised you.”

“My parents raised me.”

“But not your biological parents...”

“What are you talking about?”

“You know, the people who adopted you...”

“I'm not adopted.”

“Sure you are. You told me you were adopted.”

“Um, I’m not adopted and I don’t ever remember telling you that I was. If I did, I was just joking.”

“No. You were serious. You *are* adopted.”

“Look, I would know if I’m adopted or not, and I’m not.”

“Yes you are.”

“No. I am not adopted.”

“But you told me that you were. You are adopted.”

“Okay, somewhere along the line I must have made some sort of joke and you –“

“No. You weren’t joking. You were serious. And you *are* adopted.”

“But, I’m not.”

“Whatever... I *know* you’re adopted, I don’t know why you’re lying to me about it...”

Okay, I don’t understand conversations like this, because it seems he wants to convince me that I’m adopted. I don’t even remember joking about it. I’m thinking he has me mixed up with somebody else... but once I’ve said I’m not adopted, why doesn’t he believe me? Why would he even consider that he knows me better than I know me? Does he think he can persuade me that he’s right about me and I’m wrong?

People can be strange.

- Bill


Anonymous said...

Bill, he has the two of us mixed up, I think. I'm the one who's adopted.



Emily Blake said...

If you're staying at your adopted parents' house, where are you going to bring all the sluts?

Anonymous said...

whoa, weird! Why doesn't he believe you *now* if he believed you *then*! What is his own story? And, the important point, is there a way to use this type of disturbing dialog in a script?
p.s. what do you think of ScriptLink putting up video pitches? WOrthwhile? Will appropriate players look at these? I saw two sample pitches, and both seemed eerily like famous movies from the past (before these people were born).

odocoileus said...

Dude, you are sooo adopted.

Leslie Bates said...

Some people insist on rewriting reality.

Queen Kellee said...

I'm totally stealing this exchange for my CURB spec. ;)

James Patrick Joyce said...

Maybe you're like Jason Bourne.

Your adoption isn't the only thing you've forgotten.

Leif Smart said...

Was the person you were having this conversation with your adopted brother by any chance?

Cunningham said...

Some people should change their meds...

[IMH] said...


He might have thought you were jerking him around, and was trying not to be an easy mark.

Not saying that you're like that, but some are, and he might've got burned by one or two.

Anonymous said...

Maybe you are adopted. Maybe the guy secretly did a DNA test, went to your parents and confronted them with the evidence (did I mention that the DNA revealed you were female and from good Norwegian stock and that you were a pretty good at curling - you ere an alternate on the Nordic Olympic team). They confessed, but begged him not to tell you. He asked for a few dollars to stay quiet and not say anything to you. They refused, thus your odd conversation.


The guy is just nuts.

If an adopted guy falls in the forest...

Anonymous said...

People become attached to their beliefs. He instinctively reacts against contradiction without stopping to consider the source of the contradiction as an authority on the matter. There's something in the commentary for Se7en, where the writer met a woman who complained that they shouldn't have shown the head in the box. The writer assured her they didn't show the head in the box, but she refused to accept the word of someone who had worked on the movie.

Richard McNally said...

Plain and simple, the guy's fucked in the head.


Anonymous said...

Put that in a script and everyone will tell you your dialogue is too unconvincing...

Anonymous said...

“but once I’ve said I’m not adopted, why doesn’t he believe me?”

Well, it could be…when you told him that your WERE adopted (according to him, not you)
you made that statement more believable to him than when you told him that you WERE NOT adopted.

“Why would he even consider that he knows me better than I know me?”

I don’t think he’s trying to say that he knows you better than you know you. I mean, I really don’t know. He’s your friend, you probably know him better than I do. It sounds like he’s saying that when you told him that you were adopted, he believed you.

“Does he think he can persuade me that he’s right about me and I’m wrong?”

I don’t know.
He could be.
He’s your friend.

”People can be strange.”

Is this the first time in ten years that you’ve noticed this bizarre behavior?

I’m just saying (or rather, asking.)


Anonymous said...

If they weren't strange, we'd have nothing to bitch about or write about.

Richard McNally said...

Perhaps what he was trying to say was: "True knowledge of the self is not a means to salvation, it is salvation."

Anonymous said...

"True knowledge of the self is not a means to salvation, it is salvation."

Forget what I said. Richard makes a great point.


Swinefever said...

I loved that post. I had a similar incident once with a guy in a supermarket who was convinced I had told him I was divorced. It took some explaining to my wife who was, incidentally, standing next to me at the time, especially when he said he wasn't talking about her, but about the 'other one'....weird!

I can imagine a similar conversation in a screenplay. Two teenagers in a High School in, say, Beverly Hills, one that's full of kids from divorced families and with two sets of parents. The new kid - whose parents are still together - totally phases a local who has never met anyone with only two parents before.

"Whoa, dude! Only the two? Whadaya do for extra presents on like..erm..birthdays, and christmas and shit?"

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