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Letting the Tiger out of the Cage
Several years ago...
Whitey & I have been out somewhere all day--I believe beer may have been involved.
We come stumbling back to his apartment in Hoboken (a 5th floor walk up, to my cardiovascular systems horror) & Sue (his wife) has been extraordinarily gracious & not only rented a movie, but got what was theoretically a boy flick--Everybody's All-American.
We watched in dumbfounded silence as one of the most excrutiating pieces of dreck ever committed to celluloid unfolded before our glazed eyes.
Finally (or after 15 minutes), I begged to shut it off. Chuck hesitated, but when Sue said it wasn't that bad, he agreed to continue the audio-visual crime.
He came over to my side about 10 minutes later. but Sue held fast.
At last the movie reached it's emotional climax, Randy Quaid & Tim Hutton have a huge confrontation at the LSU Homecoming game & happen to be directly in front of the LSU mascots cage. We see a tiger pacing back & forth in back of them as they mewl about 20 years of emotional wounds that no men with penises would ever suffer, let alone admit to in front of another man.
And, like Saul on the road to Damascus, it came to me:
"The only way to save this movie is to let the Tiger out & have him maul everyone"
By then even Sue waited with baited breath, hoping against hope that the Tiger would make it a Blockbuster night.
Since that time, we refer to shutting off an awful movie as "Letting the Tiger out".
I have no way of proving it, but I believe Pat Conroy must have stolen this idea, because just as Prince of Tides is getting too awful for words, a tiger gets loose & kills everyone.