Learning Impulse Control from David Mamet

Remember writer David Mamet’s statement from the last two posts, that every scene in a play or film should answer three questions: “Who wants what from whom? What do they do when they don’t get it? Why now?”? This week we’re dealing in a very loose way with the last question, “Why now?”.

“Why now?”, to me, seems about a feeling of urgency, which speaks to impulse control. I need that brownie, or new pair of pants, or fourth martini, you say to yourself, when it’s just a want that will eventually pass. Confusing wants with needs is a common problem in people’s lives.

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