Sunday, February 12, 2012

Whistle in the elevator!

HAPPY: (...) The trouble with you in business was you never tried to please people. 

BIFF: I know, I -

HAPPY: Like when you worked for Harrison's. Bob Harrison said you were tops, and then you go and do some damn fool things like whistling whole songs in the elevator like a comedian. 

BIFF (against Happy): So what? I like to whistle sometimes.

HAPPY: You don't raise a guy to a responsible job who whistles in the elevator!

BIFF: I don’t care what they think! They’ve laughed at Dad for years,and you know why? Because we don’t belong in this nuthouse of a city! We should be mixing cement on some open plain or — or carpenters. A carpenter is allowed to whistle!

(Willy walks in (...))
WILLY: Even your grandfather was better than a carpenter. (Pause. They watch him.) You never grew up. Bernard does not whistle in the elevator,  I assure you. 

BIFF (as though to laugh Willy out of it): Yeah, but you do, Pop. 

WILLY: I never in my life whistled in an elevator! And who in the businessworld thinks I'm crazy?

from Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller, 1949.

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