Page:Manhattan Transfer (John Dos Passos, 1925).djvu/246

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234

Manhattan Transfer

"But it all may be an idea. You may be able to get over it. Go to a psychoanalyist."

"I cant talk to anybody. It's just that tonight I'm drunk. I've tried to look it up in the encyclopedia. . . . It's not even in the dictionary." He stopped and leaned against a lamppost with his face in his hands. "It's not even in the dictionary."

Jimmy Herf patted him on the back. "Buck up for Heaven's sake. They're lots of people in the same boat. The stage is full of them."

"I hate them all. . . . It's not people like that I fall in love with. I hate myself. I suppose you'll hate me after tonight."

"What nonsense. It's no business of mine."

"Now you know why I want to kill myself. . . . Oh it's not fair Herf, it's not fair. . . . I've had no luck in my life. I started earning my living as soon as I got out of highschool. I used to be bellhop in summer hotels. My mother lived in Lakewood and I used to send her everything I earned. I've worked so hard to get where I am. If it were known, if there were a scandal and it all came out I'd be ruined."

"But everybody says that of all juveniles and nobody lets it worry them."

"Whenever I fail to get a part I think it's on account of that. I hate and despise all that kind of men. . . . I dont want to be a juvenile. I want to act. Oh it's hell. . . . It's hell."

"But you're rehearsing now aren't you?"

"A fool show that'll never get beyond Stamford. Now when you hear that I've done it you wont be surprised."

"Done what?"

"Killed myself."

They walked without speaking. It had started to rain. Down the street behind the low greenblack shoebox houses there was an occasional mothpink flutter of lightning. A wet dusty smell came up from the asphalt beaten by the big plunking drops.