Saturday, 27 February 2010

The Caul

Harry Caul spies on people, making a living from listening in. He is the best bugger on the west coast. He is paranoid, secretive and wears a dirty translucent rain mac. He hears but he can't always see and that leads to confusion. While we were watching Harry overhearing a murder in the adjacent hotel room my felonius neighbour was banging on his front door yelling "I kill you, I kill you". It soon went quiet. A 'caul' is a bit of amniotic sac that is sometimes present on a newborn baby. It is rare though, roughly one in a thousand people are born wearing a caul. Amongst the superstitious it is seen as lucky, as a protective charm against drowning and as a sign of greatness and clairvoyance. But in eastern Europe, backward peoples believe that a caul bearing child will become a vampire. I was born with a caul.

Francis Ford Coppola, "The Conversation" 1974

No comments:

Post a Comment