Josh Waitzkin
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Quotes for
Josh Waitzkin (Character)
from Searching for Bobby Fischer (1993)

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Searching for Bobby Fischer (1993)
Bruce Pandolfini: Bobby Fischer held the world in contempt.
Josh Waitzkin: Well, I'm not him.
Bruce Pandolfini: You're telling me.

Josh: Maybe it's better not to be the best. Then you can lose and it's OK.

Josh Waitzkin: [throwing baseball inside mansion against the wall] Come on, Bruce!
Bruce Pandolfini: All right.

Bruce Pandolfini: [sets each chess piece up] Now, which one is you?
Josh Waitzkin: What do you mean?
Bruce Pandolfini: Which one is you?
Josh Waitzkin: They're just pieces.
Bruce Pandolfini: [places King in front of Josh] This is you!

Bruce Pandolfini: It's white's move.
Josh Waitzkin: How many points is it worth?
Bruce Pandolfini: It's just an opening move.
Josh Waitzkin: I want to know how much it's worth.
Bruce Pandolfini: Just do it for its own sake. Do it for the love of the game.
Josh Waitzkin: I want to know how many more points I am away to getting the certificate.
Bruce Pandolfini: Forget the certificate.
Josh Waitzkin: Why?
Bruce Pandolfini: I don't know.
Josh Waitzkin: What do you mean?
Bruce Pandolfini: I don't care. It's... white's move.
Josh Waitzkin: I want the certificate.
Bruce Pandolfini: [sighs] You want the certificate. You have to have the certificate.
[gets briefcase]
Bruce Pandolfini: You won't move until you get the certificate.
[opens it]
Bruce Pandolfini: Fine. You win.
[gives him copy of certificate]
Bruce Pandolfini: Here's your certificate.
Josh Waitzkin: [takes it]
Bruce Pandolfini: Fill it out. It doesn't mean anything. It's just a piece of paper. It's a xerox of a piece of paper. Do you want another one
[gives Josh another copy]
Bruce Pandolfini: Do you want 10?
[gives Josh few more copies]
Bruce Pandolfini: Do you want 20?
[continues stacking them on chess board one-by-one]
Bruce Pandolfini: 30? I've got a whole briefcase full of them. They don't mean anything, though.
Bonnie: [entering the room]
Bruce Pandolfini: They mean nothing.
Bonnie: Get out of my house.
Bruce Pandolfini: [sits there grimly a moment and then collects the certificates and prepares to leave]
Bonnie: [goes over to comfort Josh]
Bruce Pandolfini: [while getting coat on] To put a child in a position to care about winning and not to prepare him is wrong.
Bonnie: Get out of my house.
Bruce Pandolfini: [leaves]
Bonnie: [comforts Josh]

Bruce: Do you know what it means to have "contempt" for your opponent?
Josh: No.
Bruce: It means to hate them. You have to hate them Josh, they hate you.
Josh: But I don't hate them.
Bruce: Well you'd better start.

Fred: You know you could give up the game, and that would be all right with me. In fact, I want you to give it up.
Josh: But I can't.
Fred: Why not?
Josh: Because I have to play. *I* have to.

Josh Waitzkin: You've lost, you just don't know it yet.

Josh: Can we get some brochures now?
Fred: Sure, pee and get your coat.

Josh: Can we go to the dealerships now?
Fred: But the game's not over, yet.
Josh: Yes, it is.

Josh Waitzkin: [talking to a friend on the phone] I'm playing chess with my dad.
[pause]
Josh Waitzkin: Chess. It's a game, like Monopoly.

Bruce Pandolfini: Paraphrase: Look at the board, can you see it?
Josh Waitzkin: I can't see it.
Bruce Pandolfini: [violently knocks pieces on the floor] Can you see it now?

Vinnie: What's that?
Josh Waitzkin: Schliemann attack.
Vinnie: Schliemann attack? Where'd you learn that from, a book?
Josh Waitzkin: No, my teacher taught me.
Vinnie: Oh, your teacher. Well, forget it. Play like you used to, from the gut. Get your pawns rolling on the queen's side. Come and get me.

Vinnie: He didn't teach you how to win, he taught you how not to lose. That's nothing to be proud of. You're playing not to lose, Josh. You've got to risk losing. You've got to risk everything. You've got to go to the edge of defeat. That's where you want to be, boy - on the edge of defeat.
Josh Waitzkin: But...
Vinnie: But what? Play. Never play the board, always the man. You've gotta play the man *playing* the board. Play *me*. I'm your opponent, you have to beat *me*. Not the board, beat *me*.

[first lines]
Josh Waitzkin: [about Bobby Fischer] In the days before the event, the whole world wondered if he would show up. Plane after plane waited on the runway, while he napped, took walks, and ate sandwiches. Henry Kissinger called and asked him to go for his country's honor. Soon after arriving, he offended the Icelanders by calling their country inadequate because it had no bowling alleys. He complained about the TV cameras, about the lighting, about the table and chairs, and the contrast of the squares on the board. His hotel room, he said, had too nice a view. None of this has anything to do with chess of course. But maybe it did. If he won, he'd be the first American world champion in history. If he lost, he'd just be another patzer from Brooklyn.