Dave Moss: What’s your name?
Blake: Fuck you. That’s my name. You know why, mister? ‘Cause you drove a Hyundai to get here tonight. I drove an $80,000 BMW. THAT’s my name.
Long before Alec Baldwin did his Saturday Night Live impression of Donald J. Trump, Trump appropriated Baldwin’s sadistic “motivational” character, Blake, from Glengarry Glen Ross. Blake is a caricature of the salesman-as-sociopath. Baldwin refers to him as “an asshole.” Trump dialed the “you’re fired” performance down a notch with a wink of tongue-in-cheekiness.
Watch the “always be closing” scene and judge for yourself which impersonation came first:
The tenth anniversary DVD of Glengarry Glen Ross includes a special feature in which the documentary film maker, Albert Maysles recounted the story of a sales manager who, as he approached the prospect’s door, started swaying his body and shuffling his feet. After the sale, the manager asked Maysles if he had noticed the odd movement and then explained,”when you’re moving your body this way it’s very hard for somebody listening to turn you down.”
This calls attention to the erotic dimension of the sales transaction. Sometimes the commodity isn’t the most auspicious thing being exchanged. Cue the traveling salesman jokes… did you hear the one about Amway Dream Night?
Where pathos rules, where pathos is finally derived, a character has fought a battle he could not possibly have won. The pathetic is achieved when the protagonist is, by virtue of his witlessness, his insensitivity, or the very air he gives off, incapable of grappling with a much superior force. — Arthur Miller, Tragedy and the Common Man