I bought Mack having to turn Will into something just a little bit meaner than he was, to make her own actions make sense, and I bought Will, the adult child of an alcoholic, thinking the rules didn't apply to him at all. And then saying, "Take me apart." Because he's the adult child of an alcoholic and sometimes pain is the only thing that breaks through the fog.
Three cheers for Don, too, and his utter trashing of Jerry to his potential employer. God, have I wanted to do that to a couple of people, but none of them were ever dumb enough to put my name down. There's this woman who even now, if somebody called me, I'd say her every breathing breath makes the world a little worse and I wouldn't swerve if she walked in front of my car. Which is how I'd end up sued, and how I could hang out with Rebecca Halliday all night long drinking whiskey and wearing dresses that made me look like Jessica Rabbit and listening to jazz.
Well. That fantasy got pretty detailed.
This is the problem with mistakes. You try really hard on some stories. You research and you vet and you run it all past the lawyers and you scrutinize every word and you do everything right. And you worry and worry and worry. And most of the time, the Genoa sitch notwithstanding, you do in fact do everything right, and everything is fine, and you start thinking you're in the clear.
And then you throw away some little five-inch thing, some line item about a church brunch or a soccer practice or a fucking cop report, and that's the thing you fuck up utterly. It's the Michigan first, it's the item in the scroll. It's the one you don't think about at all, the one you don't see coming. That's your train wreck, your correction. I knew guys that kept track of their corrections instead of their awards. One guy went two years without having to write one and when he did it was about nothing, something happening at one time instead of another.
The Michigan first, the scroll, the prediction Jim and Maggie didn't even think about, the thing you scribble down when you're in a hurry, the provision you have put into your contract when you're not thinking straight, the trade you make in the heat of the moment: Those are the things that take you down.