In the third act of the most important film of our time, protagonist Navin Johnson hits rock bottom. Bankrupt and homeless, he abandons his beloved Marie, scoffing at the material possessions he once treasured.
"I don't need this or this. Just this ashtray. And this paddle game, the ashtray and the paddle game and that's all I need. And this remote control. The ashtray, the paddle game, and the remote control, and that's all I need. And these matches. The ashtray, and these matches, and the remote control and the paddle ball. And this lamp. The ashtray, this paddle game and the remote control and the lamp and that's all I need."
Navin continues to collect the detritus of his broken life until he waddles off awkwardly with an armful of random objects. So what's my point? I don't know that I have one. Nor do I have a clever sharecropper family that turned my Opti-Grab earnings into an impressive stock portfolio. Thus, I crack open each weekday with a fresh assignment and in doing so, invoke the ghost of one Navin Johnson, It usually happens early in the day. A reporter and I will arrive at some less than glamorous locale and since my they'll have their hands full of iPhone, notepad and the occasional stack of 8 by 10 glossy head-shots, it will be left to ME to round up the rest of the television station we brought along. "Are you ready yet?" my partner will ask between status updates. "Almost", I'll answer as I stare blankly into the abyss of a Ford Explorer liftgate.
"I don't need this or this. Just this camera. And this tripod, the camera and the tripod and that's all I need. And this microphone. The camera, this tripod, and the microphone, and that's all I need. And these lights. The camera, and this tripod, and the microphone and these lights. And this SD card. The camera, this tripod and the microphone and these lights and this SD Card and that's all I need..."
The reporter is, of course, twenty-five and doesn't realize I'm re-enacting a seminal scene from a film that helped shaped my psyche. Eventually they abandon me for the inside of whatever office building we're visiting and I can usually count on a dirty look when I follow them under heavy load, muttering antiquated movie lines all the way. Kids these days. They may consider themselves the most plugged-in media consumers ever, but they sure don't appreciate my love of the classics.
Wait until I show them my special purpose.