This is an excerpt from one of my all-time favorite books, No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy. Every time I read it I get a little chill. A master of prose, is Mr. McCarthy! If you haven’t read this book yet, do yourself a favor.
You all gettin any rain up your way? the proprietor said.
Which way would that be?
I seen you was from Dallas.
Chigurh picked his change up off the counter. And what business is it of yours where I’m from, friendo?
I didnt mean nothin by it.
You didnt mean nothing by it.
I was just passin the time of day.
I guess that passes for manners in your cracker view of things.
Well sir, I apologized. If you dont want to accept my apology I dont know what else I can do for you.
How much are these?
I said how much are these.
Chigurh unfolded a dollar onto the counter. The man rang it up and stacked the change before him the way a dealer places chips. Chigurh hadnt taken his eyes from him. The man looked away. He coughed. Chigurh opened the plastic package of cashews with his teeth and doled a third part of them into his palm and stood eating.
Will there be somethin else? the man said.
I dont know. Will there?
Is there somethin wrong?
Is that what you’re asking me? Is there something wrong with anything.