When I was a new dad, I would sing my favorite Frank Sinatra melodies to get my boys to sleep — “Fly Me to the Moon” for the older one, “Time After Time” for the younger guy.
Occasionally, in the midst of those lovely fatherly moments, I couldn’t help but think: What if through some quirk of time and the cosmos, Sinatra, or the composer, or even the lyricist were to suddenly hear me and say, “Oh my God, please stop.”
That kind of just happened to Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, who is surging of late in the polls of likely voters for the GOP presidential nominee.
Cruz is a “Princess Bride” geek — the kind of geek who recites not just a line of dialogue every now and then, but whole scenes, and while he’s on the job. Videos of Cruz in action are proliferating on social media, and a lot of them are landing in the inbox of Mandy Patinkin, of “Princess Bride” and more recently “Homeland” fame.
Patinkin, an unabashed liberal, is not happy.
“I would like to be with Senator Cruz for a moment and I would like to respectfully ask him, since he quotes all the lines from ‘The Princess Bride’ and certainly all of my character, Inigo Montoya’s, lines, I would like to know why he doesn’t quote my favorite line?” Patinkin told the New York Times this week.
Patinkin’s favorite line, which comes after Montoya avenges his father’s death: “I have been in the revenge business so long, now that it’s over, I don’t know what to do with the rest of my life.’”
Patinkin says this line underscores the emptiness of revenge, something he wishes that Cruz, who has pledged to carpet bomb areas of the Middle East controlled by the Islamic State, would understand. He cites particularly the plight of the Syrian refugees, whose entry into the United States Patinkin favors and Cruz opposes.
In contrast, Cruz’ favorite line is Montoya’s declaration earlier in the movie, “My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.”
“This man is not putting forth ideas that are at the heart of what that movie is all about,” Patinkin tells the Times. “I would love for Senator Cruz, and everyone creating fear mongering and hatred, to consider creating hope, optimism and love. Open your arms to these people, these refugees trying to get into our country, and open your hearts.”