“Tessio: Barzini's people chisel my territory and we do nothing about it. Pretty soon there won't be anyplace in Brooklyn that I can hang my hat. Michael: Try and be patient. Clemenza: I'm not asking for help, Mike, just take off the handcuffs. Michael: Be patient. Clemenza: We gotta protect ourselves. At least give me the chance to recruit some new men. Michael: No. I don't want to give Barzini any excuse to start fighting. Tessio: Mike, you're wrong. Clemenza: Don Corleone, you once said the day would come when me and Tessio could form our own families. Until today I would never think of such a thing but now I must ask your permission. Don Corleone: Well, Michael's head of the family now and if give his permission then you have my blessing. Michael: After we make the move to Nevada you can break off from the Corleone Family and go off on your own. After we make the move to Nevada. Clemenza: How long will that take? Michael: Six months. Tessio: Forgive me, Godfather, but with you gone me and Pete will come under Barzini's thumb sooner or later. Clemenza: And I hate that goddamned Barzini. In six months time there won't be nothin' left to build on. Don Corleone: Do you have faith in my judgemnt? Clemenza: Yes. Don Corleone: Do I have your loyalty? Clemenza: Yes, always Godfather. Don Corleone: Then be a friend to Michael. Do as he says. Michael: There are negotiations being made that are going to answer all of your questions and solve all of your problems. That's all I can tell you right now. Carlo, you grew up in Nevada. When we make our move there you're going to be my right hand man. Tom Hagen is no longer Consigliari. He's going to be our lawyer in Vegas. That's no reflection on Tom it's just the way I want it. Besides, if I ever help who's a better Consigliari than my father. That's it. [Everyone except Hagen leaves] Tom Hagen: Mike, why am I out? Michael: You're not a wartime Consigliari, Tom. Things could get rough with the move we're making. Don Corleone: Tom, I advised Michael. I never thought you were a bad Consigliere. I thought Santino was a bad Don, rest in peace. Michael has all my confidence as do you. But there are reasons why you must have nothing to do with what's going to happen. Tom Hagen: Maybe I could help. Michael: You're out, Tom.”

Tagged: handcuffs , Brooklyn , Nevada , Consigliere

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“When the bass drops on Bill Withers’ Better Off Dead, it’s like 7 a.m. and I confess I’m looking over my shoulder once or twice just to make sure no one in Brooklyn is peeking into my third-floor window to see me in pajamas I haven’t washed for three weeks before I slide from sink to stove in one long groove left foot first then back to the window side with my chin up and both fists clenched like two small sacks of stolen nickels and I can almost hear the silver hit the floor by the dozens when I let loose and sway a little back and just like that I’m a lizard grown two new good legs on a breeze -bent limb. I’m a grown-ass man with a three-day wish and two days to live. And just like that everyone knows my heart’s broke and no one is home. Just like that, I’m water. Just like that, I’m the boat. Just like that, I’m both things in the whole world rocking. Sometimes sadness is just what comes between the dancing. And bam!, my mother’s dead and, bam!, my brother’s children are laughing. Just like—ok, it’s true I can’t pop up from my knees so quick these days and no one ever said I could sing but tell me my body ain’t good enough for this. I’ll count the aches another time, one in each ankle, the sharp spike in my back, this mud-muscle throbbing in my going bones, I’m missing the six biggest screws to hold this blessed mess together. I’m wind— rattled. The wood’s splitting. The hinges are falling off. When the first bridge ends, just like that, I’m a flung open door.”
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