“One more time” – James Spader’s monologue from 11/25/13 The Blacklist

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I didn’t want to get hooked into watching another television series but, while taking a break from NaNoWriMo last night I came across NBC’s The Blacklist and was immediately drawn into the episode. I haven’t watched any previous episodes but, judging by the superb acting and writing in last night’s episode, a Blacklist binge weekend on Hulu is definitely in order.

One scene in particular really struck a chord with me. While taking Reddington “Red” – James Spader’s character who plays the “bad” guy – to safety,  an FBI agent (Ressler) is seriously wounded.  Red protects him from the attackers and drags him to safety. He locks them in “the box”, a steel and glass, bullet proof, bomb proof? structure. They are in the box for the remainder of the episode while the villian lurks outside.  While Red tends to Ressler’s wounds, Ressler says they aren’t going to live through this. Red says he thinks they will. “How?” Ressler asks.

Here, Red gives one of the most touching dramatic monologues I have heard in a long time. Please watch this episode to see how beautifully James Spader gives voice to the excellent script. I see Emmys for both Spader and the writer(s) of this episode.

“How?”

“Have you ever sailed across an ocean, Donald? On a sailboat surrounded by sea with no land in sight, without even the possibility of sighting land for days to come? To stand at the helm of your destiny?

I want that one more time.

I want to be in the Piazza del Campo in Siena, to feel the surge as ten racehorses go thundering by.

I want another meal in Paris at L’Ambroisie  in the place des Vosges.

I want another bottle of wine and then another.

I want the warmth of a woman in the cool set of sheets.

One more night of jazz at the Vanguard.

I want to stand on summits and smoke Cubans and feel the sun on my face for as long as I can.

Walk on the Wall again.

Climb the Tower.

Ride the River.

Stare at the frescos.

I want to sit in the garden and read one more good book.

Most of all I want to sleep. I want to sleep like I slept when I was a boy.

Give me that. Just one time.

That’s why I won’t allow that punk out there to get the best of me, let alone the last of me.”

Red and Ressler

Ah. I just love good writing.

The Billionaire, or an Average Joe – which do you prefer?

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This is my official post for the Home for the Holidays Hop.  Like this post or Follow my blog to be entered to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card (from me)!  Be sure to leave a comment below along with your email to enter the drawing for the Home for the Holidays Hop Prizes!

(Since my blog mentions Billionaires I thought this yummy recipe was appropriate. I’ve been making these every Christmas for the last ten years).

Holiday Nuggets

Holiday Nuggets

Ingredients
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sifted confectioners’ sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped nuts
Confectioners’ sugar
Colored crystallized sugar

Directions
In a bowl, cream butter and sugar. Blend in vanilla and almond extract. Gradually add flour and salt. Stir in nuts. Shape into 1-1/4-in. balls; place on ungreased baking sheets. Flatten slightly with fingers.

Bake at 325° for 25 minutes or until the bottoms are lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack. When cool, sprinkle with a mixture of confectioners’ and colored sugar. Yield: 3-1/2 dozen.
Originally published as Holiday Nuggets in Reminisce November/December 1991, p31

I made the mistake of turning on the television the other afternoon when I should have been writing and came across Pretty Woman about 15 minutes in to the movie. What is it about movies like Pretty Woman, or The Proposal, or Sleepless in Seattle, that I start watching them if I happen upon them while flipping through the channels? Do you do this to? It doesn’t matter that I might have them on DVD or could watch them on Netflix, Amazon Prime, etc. I am caught like a fish, hooked in to watching them for the umpteenth time—even sitting through the commercials! I know exactly what’s going to happen next, I could quote the dialogue word-for-word, but, still, I sink down into my sofa, pull the comfy throw over me, and snuggle in to watching yet again. It’s kind of like having a “remember when” conversation with a dear friend.

As I watched Pretty Woman (laughing out loud at that scene on Rodeo Drive showing the father and son talking on giant cell phones in a convertible—you know which scene I’m talking about) it struck me that things really haven’t changed much since the first fairytales came to be. Little girls grow up believing that some handsome, wealthy Prince Charming is going to swoop in on his white charger and carry them away into their Happily Ever After. Cue sunset and fade out.

Plug in “Billionaire” or “Billionaire Romance” on an Amazon book search and you’ll get page after page after page of results. All pretty much follow the same theme: girl meets (or works for) extremely wealthy and extremely good-looking and powerful man who eventually (if not a first sight) falls in love with her and guarantees her a lifetime of pampering and riches beyond her wildest dreams.

Funny thing is, these billionaires are so busy wining and dining (or flogging and spanking) their woman, that I can’t possibly see how they get any work done! Sure, you might see them occasionally sitting at their desk, or speaking with a colleague or client on the phone (until they are distracted by their woman), but most of the time they’re playing. After a while, for me anyway, it just all becomes one big yawn.

Give me the working man. Give me the average Joe who works with his hands, be he a plumber, electrician, builder, roofer, welder, floor installer, you name it. He gets up each morning, throws on his Carhartts and Timberlands (Love me a guy in blue jeans and steel-toed boots), and hits the road running. You may see him on the jobsite wearing a hardhat with a clipboard under his arm, or straddling the ridge of a roof, hammer in hand, or wielding a bulldozer over a tricky excavation site. He brown-bags his lunch and drinks his coffee from a thermos. His face may be lean and sunburned, maybe with a little bit of bristle, or a full beard. He has crinkles around his smiling eyes. He may come home smelling of sawdust, or grease, and good, honest, hard-working sweat. He picks you up in his strong arms—arms with muscles earned from manual labor, not a gym workout—plants a kiss on your lips, looks at you with love in his eyes. You ask him, “How was your day?” And he says, “It was good, and now it’s even better.” And he smiles the smile of satisfaction that comes with knowing he put in a long day of good, honest hard work.

You’ll find this average Joe (maybe more than one) in my next novel. I’m falling more in love with this guy with every word I put on the page. Follow my blog for sneak peeks and updates on the release date!

Thanks for reading! If you’re reading this as part of the Home for the Holidays Romance Troupe blog hop, please be sure to leave a comment with your email address in order to be entered in the Grand Prize Giveaway! First prize= $450+ Gift Card, Second prize = 1 eBook from each participating Author.

After leaving your comment/email, please return to the Troupe page for the list of stops: http://www.theromancetroupe.com

Happy Holidays!

Sophia