Do you feel like a fish in a barrel, rifle readied, just because you smoke cigars? Read on:
If you’ve ever watched “DJango Unchained” (2012) directed by Quentin Tarantino, there’s a sequence in the film when the former dentist now a full-fledged bounty hunter, Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz), and his newly purchased slave, DJango (Jamie Foxx) walk into a saloon in Daughtrey, Texas. The owner panics, “Whoa! What the hell you think you doin’ boy, get that n….. outta here!” When he sees this, he skedaddles for the sheriff. Dr. Schultz reminds him in a loud voice, “Innkeeper! Remember, get the sheriff, not the marshall.”
The sheriff walks into the saloon and asks them to step out of the saloon, which they do. “Now why y’all wanna come into my town, start trouble, and scare all these nice people? You ain’t got nothin’ better to do, then (sic) to come into Bill Sharp’s town and show your ass?”
And this they do, leaving the saloon and stepping out into the street.
The former dentist walks toward the sheriff as if to shake his hand and instead a slight metallic sound produces a derringer and Schultz puts a bullet in his heart. Then he walks over to the body and fires one into his head. The Innkeeper runs to get the marshall with the echoes of the former dentist’s voice crying out, “Now you can go get the marshall.”
Now the two men return to the building and are holed up in the town of Daughtry’s saloon immediately after Schultz shot, in cold blood, the town’s sheriff.
Now this entire scene is being played out because not only did Dr. Schultz, former dentist cum bounty hunter, shoot the town’s sheriff, but he also allowed Django (for those of you who haven’t seen the film, I urge you to do so), a slave – a black man – to walk into the saloon and have a beer! Gasp!
So now it’s up to the United States Marshall to set this whole debacle straight.
It’s only moments later when the entire town is walking behind the Marshall who is giving orders right and left of how this is going to play out. “Move that buckboard over there long ways across the street from the saloon. And I want six men and six Winchesters behind it. And I want two men with two rifles on this roof, and two men with two rifles on that roof, with all barrels pointed at that front door. And somebody git poor Bill outta the goddamn street.” (imsdb.com)
So the Marshall arrives and he’s talking loudly and directly towards the saloon doors where the two men are inside. “We got eleven Winchesters on every way outta that buildin’! You got one chance to git outta this alive! You and your n….. come out right now with your hands over your head, and I mean, right now!” (imsdb.com)
Dr. Schultz, the refined gentleman that he is, answers from the inside the marshall in duly polite fashion by slightly raising his voice and asks, “First things first! Is this the marshall I have the pleasure of addressing?” The marshall answers back in the affirmative, “Yes it is, this is U.S. Marshall Gill Tatum.”
“Marshall Tatum,” Schultz continues, “may I address you, your deputies, and apparently the entire town of Daughtrey, as to the incident that just occurred? Again, the marshall agrees with the caveat that both men will exit unarmed.
Dr. Schultz continues his planned exit by stating, “I have relieved myself of all weapons, and just as you have instructed, I’m ready to step outside with my hands raised above my head. I trust as a representative of the criminal justice system of The United States of America, I shan’t be shot down in the street, by either you or your deputies, before I’ve had my day in court?
“You mean like you did our sheriff? Shot ’em down like a dog in the street?”
“Yes, that’s exactly what I mean! Do I have your word as a lawman not to shoot
me down like a dog in the street?”
The Marshall agrees. But before they exit the saloon he cautions Django by saying, “They’re a little tense out there. So don’t make any quick movements, and let me do the talking.”
Both men walk through leaving the two swinging saloon doors behind them with their hands held high in the air. The marshall asks if he or the slave are unarmed and he reassures the marshall that neither of them has weapons. And then he goes into his explanation of why what took place – took place.
“My name is Dr. King Schultz. And like yourself, Marshall, I am a servant of the court. The man lying dead in the dirt, who the good people of Daughtrey saw fit to elect as their sheriff, who went by the name of Bill Sharp, is actually a wanted outlaw by the name of Willard Peck, with a price on his head of two hundred dollars. That’s two hundred dollars – dead or alive.”
The marshall seems to talk to himself saying, “The hell you say.”
Dr. Schultz goes on to further explain what Peck was doing prior to being elected as Daugherty’s sheriff about two years ago. And the Marshall is amazed to find out that the town’s sheriff was a cattle rustler at the “B.C. Corrigan Cattle Company of Lubbock Texas.”
Then the former dentist goes into the legal details by saying quite clearly, “In my possession (pointing to a tri-folded piece of paper held high) is a warrant made out by circuit court Judge Henry Allen Laudermilk of Austin, Texas. You are encouraged to wire him. He will back up who I am, and who your dear departed sheriff – was. In other words marshall, you owe me two hundred dollars.”
Yep, that’s how I feel sometimes in this business. You gotta take what’s yours as long as you know the law. You gotta do what you know is right, no matter what the shop owner thinks is right.
Which is happening right now with the FDA breathing down our necks and the shop owners are not too far behind looking for all sorts of insane deals to keep profits high to pay the fees that the FDA is requiring for inclusion. Ergo my stance as an ersatz Dr. Schultz just doing my job. Preserving my livelihood. Dissing the discounts. “Duz does everything.” (Look it up.)
Interesting business, this. But I’m hanging in there (excuse the pun) cuz I believe there are enough bodies, ahem – cigars, and sensible bounties, nay discounts – to go around.