Extract from ‘The De-territorialisation of Nick Nolte’ [taken from ‘Hollywood on the Edge of Forever’]
We’ve done Tom Cruise and his many cabinets, now for Nick Nolte and the losing of his mind:
‘ The two other cops who liked to know why asked Nick Nolte the wildman drunk why he’d been trying to strangle a tramp.
‘Where’s the camera, padre?’
They asked him what provoked the attack.
Nick Nolte the wildman drunk reached up and checked his hair.
‘You haven’t taken the picture…’
They asked him if he had some kind of vendetta against the homeless.
‘No…shit, I was trying to help that fucker. He attacked me. Now what about that picture?’
They asked him if it was part of a belief system.
‘The picture, man… mugshot…con-pic…whatever we’re calling it…’
Did he believe the homeless were weak and deserved to die?
‘No…just take the picture, man, come on…’
Had he read something that gave him this idea? Dostoyevsky’s The Devils perhaps?
Nick Nolte the wildman drunk put both hands on his hair, pushing it down.
‘I can’t hold it much longer…I can’t…’
Or Crime and Punishment? Did he believe he was better than everyone else?
‘Take my fucking picture, man…’
They told him to calm down, just answer the questions.
The cop who liked to know why checked his watch. Lunch time. He nodded at his colleagues and walked off.
Nick Nolte the wildman drunk disappeared under the table after the next question about nihilism.
He pulled at his hair and chipped away at the desk with his fingernails and muttered, ‘I ain’t no fucking nihilist, man, and I ain’t no fucking tramp strangler, and I ain’t no…ain’t no whatever you’re saying I am…I’m…’
Nick Nolte the wildman drunk came back up from under the desk and grabbed a pencil. He tried to lunge at the cop nearest to him, one of the ones who liked to know why, but it was too far to reach.
He said sorry and put the pencil down.
Next to the pencil was a stapler.
Nick Nolte the wildman drunk picked it up and lunged for the other cop, whose hand was flat on the desk, and tried to staple his hand to the wood. Again, too far, and he was too slow anyway.
‘Shit, sorry man,’ he said, and put the stapler down.
He grabbed at his hair, pulling it this way and that…
Another cop, one who liked to slap, came close and asked him for his autograph. Hanging at his waist was a firearm.
Nick Nolte the wildman drunk smiled, took the pen and paper and wrote, ‘Fuck you, inquisitor.’
The cop who liked to slap tried to read it, and as he did, Nick Nolte the wildman drunk grabbed his firearm and shot him in the gut.
‘Got a hole there in your gut, padre…’
He stood up, laughed, and shot the two cops who liked to know why point blank in the chest.’