A Movie Critic's Inspiration
In his book People Only Die of Love in Movies, Steve Haruch recalls that Nashville Scene movie reviewer Jim Ridley had an envelope over his desk with the words “THAT’S WHAT I’VE GOT” written in green Sharpie. It’s a memorable line from Rio Bravo. As John Wayne’s John T. Chance prepares to go up against the bad guys with his ragtag crew of two, a friend says to him, “A game-legged old man and a drunk. That’s all you’ve got?” “That’s what I’ve got,” Chance replies. Haruch quotes Scene staff writer Steven Hale: “‘Jim told me he had put that sign on his wall to remind him not to give in to the discouragement that could come from being short-staffed and under-resourced . . . He made you believe that in a pickup game of journalism, with everyone on the field to choose from, he’d want you on his team.’” It’s another small, empowering moment. If you’re from a cultural wasteland, if you’re not surrounded by like-minded folks, if this or that goes wrong, if you don’t have the same advantages that the other person has, well, you have what you have.
From “You Can Find Your Voice by Loving Things” by William Boyle for Oxford American
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