The happiest moments in the play are the moments that exist in the past, as the characters recall their prior existences. Both Margaret and Brick reference the beginning of their marriage as a happy time, for example, though their present reality proves to be anything but happy. Brick also drinks because he can’t let go of his relationship with Skipper—and his role in Skipper’s decline and death. Brick also speaks about how people like to do the things they used to do, even after they’ve stopped being able to do them—hence, his accident on the high school track field trying to jump hurdles. Similarly, Big Daddy speaks about pursuing women and regrets the fact that he didn’t pursue more women in his youth, instead expending his sexual energy on Big Mama.
Additionally, Big Daddy and Big Mama’s desire for grandchildren from Brick stem from a desire to preserve Big Daddy—they believe that Brick, more than Gooper, is Big Daddy’s son and image, and a grandson fathered by Brick would represent a kind of immortality for Big Daddy and the masculine family line.
Memory, Nostalgia, Regret ThemeTracker
Memory, Nostalgia, Regret Quotes in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
Born poor, raised poor, expect to die poor unless I manage to get us something out of what Big Daddy leaves when he dies of cancer!
Oh, but St. Paul's in Grenada has three memorial windows, and the latest one is a Tiffany stained-glass window that cost twenty-five hundred dollars, a picture of Christ the Good Shepherd with his Lamb in his arms.
Jumping the hurdles, Big Daddy, runnin' and jumpin' the hurdles, but those high hurdles have gotten too high for me, now.
I think the reason he buys everything he can buy is that in the back of his mind he has the crazy hopes that one of his purchases will be life everlasting!—Which it never can be….
I'll smother her in—minks! Ha Ha! I'll strip her naked and smother her in minks and choke her with diamonds and smother her with minks and hump her from hell to breakfast.
A drinking man's someone who wants to forget he isn't still young an' believing.
Sit in a glass box watching games I can't play? Describing what I can't do while players do it? Sweating out their disgust and confusion in contests I'm not fit for? Drinkin' a coke, half bourbon, so I can stand it?