ROY:Strict.JOE:Ishouldn'tbebotheringyouwiththis.ROY:No,please. Hearttoheart. Want another.. . .Whatisthat, seltzer?JOE:Thefailuretomeasureuphitspeople very hard. From suchastrong desireto begood theyfeelveryfarfromgoodnesswhen theyfail.Whatscaresme isthatmaybewhatIreally lovein heristhepartof herthat's farthestfromthelight,fromGod'slove; maybeI wasdrawntothatin the firstplace.And I'mkeepingitalive becauseIneedit.ROY:Whywouldyouneedit?JOE:Therearethings.. . .Idon't knowhowwellweknowourselves.Imean, whatif?IknowImarriedherbecauseshe. . .becauseIloveditthatshe wasalways wrong,alwaysdoing something wrong, likeonestepout ofstep.InSalt Lake City that stands out.Inever stood out,on theoutside,butinside,it washardfor me. Topass.ROY:Pass?JOE:Yeah.ROY:Passaswhat?53
ANGELSINAMERICAJOE:Oh.Well.. . .Assomeonecheerfulandstrong.ThosewholoveGodwithanopen heart uncloudedbysecretsandstrugglesarecheerful;God'seasy simple loveforthem showsin howstrongandhappy they are.Thesaints.ROY:But you hadsecrets? Secret struggles. . .JOE:Iwantedto be one of theelect,one of theBlessed.Youfeelyououghtto be,thattheblemishesareyoursbychoice,whichofcourse they aren't. Harper's sorrow, that reallydeep sorrow,shedidn't choose that.Butit's there.ROY:Youdidn'tput itthere.JOE:No.ROY:Yousound likeyouthinkyoudid.JOE:I amresponsibleforher.ROY:Because she's your wife.JOE:That.And I dolove her.ROY:Whatever. She's your wife.And sothereareobligations.Toher.Butalsotoyourself.JOE:She'dfallapartinWashington.ROY:Thenlet herstay here.JOE:She'llfallapartif Ileave her.ROY:Thenbringher toWashington.JOE:Ijust can't, Roy.Sheneedsme.ROY:Listen, Joe.I'm thebest divorce lawyerin thebusiness.(Littlepause.)JOE:Can't Washington wait?ROY:You dowhatyouneedto do,Joe.Whatjyowneed.You.Letherlifegowhereitwantsto go.You'll bothbebetterforthat.Somebodyshouldgetwhat they want.MAN:Whatdo youwant?LOUIS:Iwantyou tofuckme,hurtme,makemebleed.54MILLENNIUMAPPROACHESMAN:Iwantto.LOUIS:Yeah?MAN:Iwanttohurtyou.LOUIS:Fuckme.MAN:Yeah?LOUIS:Hard.MAN:Yeah?Youbeena badboy?(Pause.Louislaughs,softly.)LOUIS:Very bad.Verybad.MAN:Youneedto bepunished, boy?LOUIS:Yes.I do.MAN:Yeswhat?(Littlepause.)LOUIS:Um, I ...MAN:Yeswhat,boy?LOUIS:Oh. Yessir.MAN:Iwantyou totakeme toyour place, boy.LOUIS:No, Ican'tdothat.MAN:Nowhat?LOUIS:Nosir,Ican't,I ...Idon't live alone, sir.MAN:Your lover know you'reoutwitha mantonight, boy?LOUIS:Nosir,he ...Mylover doesn't know.MAN:Your lover knowyou . . .LOUIS:Let's changethesubject,OK? Can we go toyour place?MAN:Ilive withmyparents.LOUIS:Oh.55
ANGELSINAMERICAROY:Everyonewhomakesit inthis world makesitbecausesomebody olderandmore powerful takesaninterest.Themost precious assetinlife,Ithink,is theabilityto beagoodson.Youhave that, Joe. Somebodywho can be agoodsonto afatherwhopushes them farther than they would other-wisego.