Fences – Troy Monologue

Context: Troy tries to defend his reasoning for cheating on Rose through a baseball metaphor. Troy: Rose, I done tried all my life to live decent . . . to live a clean . . . hard . . . useful life. I tried to be a good husband to you. In every way I knew how. Maybe I come into the world backwards, I don‘t know. But . . . you born with two strikes on you before you come to the plate. You got to guard it closely . . . always looking for the curve-ball on the inside corner. You can‘t afford to let none get past you. You can‘t afford a call strike. If you going down . . . you going down swinging. Everything lined up against you. What you gonna do. I fooled them, Rose. I bunted. When I found you and Cory and a halfway decent job… I was safe. Couldn‘t nothing touch me, I wasn‘t gonna strike out no more. I wasn‘t going back to the penitentiary. I wasn‘t gonna lay in he streets with a bottle of wine. I was safe. I had me a family. A job. I wasn‘t gonna get that last strike. I was on first looking for one of them boys to knock me in. To get me home. Then I saw that girl . . . she firmed up my backbone. And I got to thinking that if I tried . . . I just might be able to steal second. Do you understand, after eighteen years I wanted to steal second.

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