Quote of the Day: Goddamn Norwegian Mad

Norwegian Mad

Ending our series of zingers from Nicholas Ray:

Here’s Ray, after describing how he and his family were persecuted in Wisconsin during WWI because they were of German-Norwegian origin ~

“The story begins at the in-between time of November 8, 1918, the day of the false armistice. I was seven and had become a Lutheran monk sulking under the butternut trees, lying in a hammock, wearing bell-bottomed sailor trousers, teasing my sister to tickle up or go. That night my oldest sister Alice drove my other sisters, Ruth and Helen, my mother, and myself through the town of Galesville and, we all beat pots and pans and lit torches, honked the two horns, and yelled out ‘PEACE PEACE PEACE!! ARMISTICE ARMISTICE PEACE PEACE!!!’

“The next morning Alice came into my room to say with heavy doom that it had been a false armistice. I hadn’t yet observed that that was the nature of life, so I got goddamn Norwegian mad and ran slamming doors through the house to the front porch. The walls were covered with antler heads, the floor with the tears of my mother and our neighbours, the Beizers. The Beizers’ house had been painted yellow during the night to show that they were still dirty yellow huns.

“The best epitaph I can think of is:




“And it happens ever day.”

~ From I Was Interrupted, Nicholas Ray on Making Movies. Edited by Susan Ray.


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