Peter O'Toole

Goldberg: Why we've let actors become our moral guides

Goldberg: Why we've let actors become our moral guides

There's a great scene in the wonderful 1982 movie "My Favorite Year," which is set in 1954. Peter O'Toole plays a semi-washed-up actor named Alan Swann, famous for swashbuckling roles. For reasons too complicated to explain here, Mr. Swann tries to shimmy down the side of a building using a fire hose. He ends up dangling just below a cocktail party on a balcony. Two stockbrokers are chatting when one of them notices Mr. Swann swinging below them. "I think Alan Swann is beneath us!" he exclaims.

The second stockbroker replies: "Of course he's beneath us. He's an actor."

It may be hard for some people to get the joke these days, but for most of...

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