I’m sitting in the back of a small café sipping my tea. My purse is beside me on the table along with my notes. I’ve already been waiting 20 minutes before Godot finally arrives. He is wearing a pair of Pierre Balmain jeans, open vest with no shirt underneath, a blue Portolano scarf and cradled in one arm is a white Mal-Shi. Godot approaches my table and without apologizing for being late, he sits the dog on the table. Both dog and owner look hung over. The waiter takes our orders and I dive right in with my list of questions.
M: You just won your fourth Oscar and you’re working on a new movie called, The Sacrifice. What is the movie about?
G: Yes, I have four Oscars; I would have five but the Academy is biased. The movie is about the sacrifice a family has to make after the stock market crash of 1929. The family has to get rid of most of their help; they can only afford to retain one maid. I play the role of the father, who is desperately trying to hold his family together.
The waiter comes back with our order. He puts a plate of Cobb salad in front of me and a cappuccino in front of Godot and without drinking it he tells the waiter it’s cold and to take it back.
M: How did you prepare for that role?
Godot doesn’t answer right away. He takes out some paper along with a pouch of tobacco from his vest. He lays the paper on the table and dumps the tobacco out, some of it lands on the paper, but most of it lands in a big heap on the table. He starts rolling the cigarette, while the Mal-Shi starts licking the pile of tobacco. Godot lights the cigarette and takes a long puff from it. A woman sitting at the table next to us complains and he calls her a slag.
G: I got rid of all my staff except for one maid. It was okay at first; it was kind of like camping, but after a while we began to tear each other apart. We lived like animals for a year.
I take a bite of my Cobb Salad, while Godot puffs away and the Mal-Shi stares at me with his judgmental eyes. He thinks I’m fat. The waiter brings Godot another cappuccino.
M: Most directors won’t work with you because you are habitually late and argue with your fellow cast members. Why do you always make people wait for you? Do you feel like one day you will unemployable?
G: They can either wait for me or find another actor, because I arrive when I’m ready. I can be a father trying to keep his family together, an astronaut, the President…I can be fucking God anytime I choose. I have a rare talent; I will never be unemployable.
M: You and your wife recently had a baby. How has fatherhood changed your perspective of the world?
The waiter approaches our table with trepidation and asks Godot to put out the cigarette, which he does by throwing it into the cappuccino. The Mal-Shi who is also offended, lifts his leg up to pee on my Cobb salad.
G: It hasn’t; the world is a toilet bowel and everyone is a pile of shit and I still believe that.
M: You learned your craft from the great Samuel Beckett who was your mentor. How were you influenced by him?
Godot pounds on the table. The Mal-Shi barks at me and starts to chew on my purse strap. He knows it is from last season.
G: Samuel Beckett was second-rate playwright. He did not make me into an actor; I made me. I have four Oscars.
He starts gesticulating wildly with his hands. The Mal-Shi is still attacking my purse. Everyone in the café is now looking at Godot, because he is shouting and looks like a wild man. The waiter who is about to cry, tells him to keep his voice down. As if my intuition or perhaps because his owner has done it a thousand times, the Mal-Shi jumps off the table right before Godot flips it over. My purse lands on the floor and the pissy Cobb salad lands in my lap.
G: You are a hack writer and your magazine is shit.
Godot picks up the Mal-Shi and storms out of the café. The waiter, who is weeping, offers me a towel and the bill.