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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

enik1138
-at-popapostle-dot-com
Twin Peaks: The Autobiography of F.B.I. Special Agent Dale Cooper Twin Peaks
The Autobiography of F.B.I. Special Agent Dale Cooper
Book
As heard by Scott Frost

(Page numbers come from the 1st printing, May 1991)

 

A record of the life of Dale Cooper from his own audio tape recordings since the age of 13.

 

Read the book at Glastonberry.net

 

Didja Know?

 

The Autobiography of F.B.I. Special Agent Dale Cooper is a transcription of the audiotape journal of Dale Cooper from the age of 13 up to his being given the assignment to Twin Peaks for the Laura Palmer case 22 years later. The subtitle of the book is My Life, My Tapes.

 

The book's author is Scott Frost, brother of Twin Peaks co-creator Mark Frost. He also wrote a couple episodes of the TV series.

 

Characters appearing in this novel

 

Dale Cooper

Lewis Nordine - childhood friend of Dale's; USAF, Ret.

Jim Nordine - older brother of Lewis

Emmet Cooper - older brother of Dale; moves to Canada to be a lumberjack to avoid the draft

Bradley Schlurman - childhood friend of Cooper's; minister

Marie Schlurman - sister of Bradley, first potential love interest of Dale

24th Street gang - a gang of young toughs in Dale's neighborhood who steal from and bully other kids

Tom and Will Johnson - brothers, Tom was friend of Dale's, Will was killed in Vietnam

Mr. Botnick - neighbor of the Coopers, goes crazy and runs down the street naked

Mr. Barstow - a history teacher at Dale's school

Mrs. Winslow - girls sex education teacher at Dale's school

Mr. Brumley - the janitor at Dale's school; later won $50,000 in Atlantic City and retired

Mr. Tooley - Dale's scoutmaster when he was 14

Daren Seedler - boyfriend of Marie Schlurman

Mr. Nordstrom - neighbor of Cooper's family, possibly the father of Nancy Nordstrom

Mrs. Nordstrom - wife of Mr. Nordstrom who painted a version of the Last Supper, possibly the mother of Nancy Nordstrom

Newt Cummings - fellow scout member of Dale's

Al Cooper - Dale's uncle

Howard - another boyfriend of Marie Schlurman

Michael Bishop Tree - Native American dinner guest at the Cooper home

Anne Sweeney - girl from the Midwest who moves to Philadelphia and attends Dale's school, he develops an immediately crush on her, but later realizes she is a lesbian

Nancy Nordstrom - student at Dale's school, lesbian girlfriend of Anne Sweeney

George - an employee at Cooper's Offset Printing who loses his hand in a printshop accident

Star - hippy who picked up a hitchhiking Dale, boyfriend of April Larken

April Larken - hippy who picked up a hitchhiking Dale, girlfriend of Star

Allen K. Boyle - men's hairpiece salesman who picks up Dale hitchhiking

Sparks - a man Dale meets while hitchhiking outside Reading, PA

Carl Engler - childhood friend of Dale's, electrician

Mrs. Peale - Dale's English teacher at Germantown Friends School

Mr. Hord - Dale's American history teacher at Germantown Friends School

Mrs. Laudner - neighbor of the Coopers with a crooked nose

Jim - Dale's digging partner in a job digging holes

Andy - a woman Dale falls for from Bryn Mawr college

Tim - Andy's estranged husband

Howard Teller - friend of Dale's at college, U.S. Army Captain

Charlotte - a potter, Mr. Cooper's second wife, soon divorced

Lars - Dale's ski instructor

Lazer - a female artist Dale meets in New York City

Margaret Hastings - Dale's psychology professor in college

Dr. Perkins  - Dale's mentor at the mental ward of the county hospital

Allen - a mental patient with whom Dale interacts at the county hospital

Betty - a mental patient with whom Dale interacts at the county hospital

L.B. Johnson - Marriage officiant for Mr. Cooper and Charlotte

Lena Fraser- a girlfriend of Dale's from Bryn Mawr college

Todd Fraser - Lena's brother (mentioned only)

Bill Fraser - Lena's father

Joan Fraser - Lena's mother

Windom Earle - former FBI agent and partner of Cooper

Caroline Earle - wife of Windom Earle, lover of Cooper

Ted - a former member of the 24th Street gang

John Lewis - Dale's roommate at FBI Academy

Eugene L. Motts - an extortionist in an historical FBI case file

Robin Masters - classmate of Dale's at FBI Academy

Aldo Smith - FBI agent

Diane - Agent Cooper's secretary

Chris Roe - a kidnap victim in a case investigated by Cooper

Steven Petrini - owner of Petrini Smoke and Book Shop, kidnapper

Tess - beekeeper, kidnapper

Mr. Baldini - owner of the bakery below Cooper's apartment in Pittsburgh

Louis Dante - an organized crime figure found tortured and murdered

Jimmy Lester - thief who is found murdered

Bill Raum - FBI agent

Gordon Cole - FBI Regional Bureau Chief and Agent Cooper's immediate superior

Shamrock - Mr. Cooper's third wife and current stepmother of Dale

Spider - friend of a male prostitute who was murdered in San Francisco

Mr. Bush - killer of a number of male prostitutes in the San Francisco area

Randy - a male prostitute who became a murder victim

Dennis Bryson - DEA agent

Mr. Weller - owner of the Cross River Café

Teresa Mary Banks - murder victim in Deer Meadow, WA

 


 

Didja Notice?

 

The back cover of the book has the header "Give yourself a present today". This refers to Cooper's advice to Truman in Episode 6: "Realization Time", to give yourself a gift once a day, every day.

 

1967

 

Cooper's audio tape entries begin on December 25, 1967, when he is 13 years old. This matches his birthdate of April 19, 1954 as stated in the Twin Peaks collector card set.

 

Dale is a Cub Scout of the Boy Scouts of America at the beginning of the book. Later, he achieves Eagle Scout status.

 

As a boy, Dale lives with his parents and older brother at 1127 Hillcrest Avenue, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. There is an actual Hillcrest Avenue in Philadelphia, but there doesn't appear to be an 1127 address.

 

    On December 25, Dale mentions Sears.

    Dale states that he requires a password to enter his room and the password changes every week, this week being "Dark Passage". This may be a reference to the 1947 film by that name since he is seen to be familiar with crime noir films from his having a poster of Jimmy Stewart in The FBI Story (1959) above his bed.

    Dale receives his first tape recorder as a Christmas gift, a Norelco B2000. I've been unable to confirm if that was a real model made by Norelco. In current times, the Norelco brand name is used only on electronic personal care devices such as electric razors, but in the 1960s-70s, the parent company, Phillips, marketed a number of home electronics, including tape recorders, under the Norelco brand.

    Dale notes that for Christmas he got his father Old Spice (a brand of aftershave) and a pair of Totes (probably referring to the cold-weather gloves line).

    Dale attends Germantown Friends School as a boy. This is a real world private school run by the Quakers in the Germantown district of Philadelphia. Quakers are a Christian religious denomination most prominent in Pennsylvania.

    The book implies that the Cooper family are Unitarians, a branch of Christianity.

    Dale's father owns and runs Cooper's Offset Printing on Germantown Road. There is no Germantown Road in Philadelphia, but Dale may be referring to Germantown Avenue, which does exist.

    One of Cooper's father's heroes is Benjamin Franklin. Franklin (1705-1790) was one of the founding fathers of the United States and a polymath. Like Mr. Cooper, he was a printer as well.

    At the end of the family's personal Christmas celebration at home, Mr. Cooper reads a page from The Grapes of Wrath rather than the Bible. The Grapes of Wrath is a classic 1939 novel by John Steinbeck about the plight of the poor during the Great Depression in the United States.

 

On December 26, Dale purchases a battery pack for his tape recorder at Simms' Hardware. This appears to be a fictitious business.

 

Young Dale suffers from occasional bouts of asthma, treated by his mother with VapoRub.

 

Dales's mother often has disturbing dreams. She believes people can see things in dreams they can't see in the waking world.

 

Dale's friend Bradley received a new Stingray bicycle for Christmas. Sting-Ray is a bicycle line made by Schwinn Bicycle Company.

 

Dale comments that members of the 24th Street gang were arrested outside the Band Box Theater for stealing a car. The Band Box Theater was a real art house theater in Germantown at the time; Cooper returns to Philadelphia to visit his father in 1988 to find that the Band Box has burned down at some point in the past.

 

1968  

 

    On January 10, 1968, Dale has written a letter to Efrem Zimbalist to tell him how much he likes his show and if he has any advice for someone who would like to make a career in the FBI. Efrem Zimbalist Jr. was the star of the 1965-1974 TV series The FBI. The series was partially based on The FBI Story film mentioned earlier. Zimbalist soon sends Dale an autographed photo, though does not appear to offer advice (as expected since he's not an FBI agent, he only plays one on TV).

    Dale also mentions enjoying The Wild, Wild West and Hawaii Five-O. These were two popular TV shows at the time.

    Dale also considers writing to "Mr. Hoover" about his interest in the bureau. This refers to J. Edgar Hoover, the director of the FBI from 1935-1972.

 

    On January 12, Dale notices that after eating asparagus, his pee smells like asparagus. This is a known trait of that particular vegetable.

    A man seeks sanctuary in the school library from the draft. At the time, the U.S. had a wartime draft instituted for military recruits to send into the Vietnam War.

 

    On January 14, Dale remarks that Marie's dancing was like an ice skater on Wide World of Sports, a sports features program that aired on ABC in the U.S. from 1961-1998.

    Dale follows members of the 24th Street gang to an alley next to Fairmount Park. Fairmount Park is the largest park in Philadelphia.

 

On January 31, Dale takes his pledge to become a Tenderfoot Scout. This is the first level of the Boy Scouts, having graduated from Cub Scouts. He's already making his preparations to become an Eagle Scout within two years; this is the highest rank for Boy Scout members.

 

On February 8, Dale writes that the Schlurmans have a picture of Old Faithful hanging in the hallway. Old Faithful is a geyser at Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, which erupts in a predictable manner, roughly once every hour.

 

On February 16, Dale tells of pretending to kill Japs while playing WWII with his friends outside. The term "Japs" is short for Japanese and is now largely considered an ethnic slur.

 

On March 8, Dale explains that his Grandmother Cooper died of a stroke in his house while making a cherry pie that day.

 

On March 30, Dale reports having finished reading the Sherlock Holmes novel The Hound of the Baskervilles. The novel by Arthur Conan Doyle was originally published in 1902.

 

On April 4, Dale reports on the assassination of Martin Luther King. This was the actual date of his assassination.

 

Dale receives a Timex watch for his fourteenth birthday and he submerges it in water for 15 minutes to see if it still ticks afterward. Presumably, his model was a waterproof one and he wanted to prove it, based on the Timex commercials of the time which used the slogan, "Takes a licking and keeps on ticking."

 

On April 20, Dale performs the Heimlich maneuver on scoutmaster Mr. Tooley when he chokes on a dandelion during an "eating in the wilds" demonstration. The Heimlich maneuver was developed by American physician Dr. Henry Heimlich, the use of abdominal thrusts under the victim's diaphragm to clear an obstruction in the windpipe.

 

On June 6, Dale reports on the assassination of Bobby Kennedy.

 

    On June 14, Dale reports his friend Bradley is off to camp in Maine to learn French and he doesn't know why Bradley has to go to Maine to do that. Maine was first settled by the French in 1604 and still has a fairly high French-speaking population today.

 

    The rest of the Schlurman family heads off for a tour of the national parks for the summer, including the Grand Canyon.

 

On June 20, Dale writes to J. Edgar Hoover, stating his intention to become an FBI agent and explaining that his recent trouble at school with secretly audiotaping the girls' sex education class was purely for scientific reasons, not personal gain. Then he asks Hoover if he has any experiences with the use of audio tape he could share and discuss. Hoover was known for his use of audiotapes of the conversations of personal enemies, the politically powerful, etc.

 

Mrs. Nordstrom painted a version of the Last Supper on a visit to the Poconos. The Last Supper was the final meal of Jesus before his crucifixion. The Poconos are a mountain range in northeastern Pennsylvania that is a popular vacation destination for the state's residents.

 

On July 3, Dale receives a letter back from J. Edgar, congratulating him on his esprit de corps in the taping of the sex education class. Esprit de corps is a French phrase that has come to represent the ability to optimistically plunge ahead towards a goal despite opposition.

 

On July 15, Dale meets J. Edgar at FBI headquarters in Washington, D.C. (at the time still housed within the Department of Justice building). He even gets his picture taken with him, holding a Thompson submachine gun.

 

While touring FBI headquarters, Dale sees the eyeglasses John Dillinger was wearing when he was shot in Chicago. Dillinger was an infamous gangster and bank robber during the Depression. He was killed by FBI agents during a shootout in Chicago on July 22, 1934, wearing eyeglasses as part of a disguise.

 

In his August 10 entry, Dale mentions Marie's visit to the Grant Tetons. This refers to Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming.

 

Dale's entry for September 1 may explain why he does not like birds. The 14-year old even says, "I do not like birds," the exact phrase he uses in regards to Waldo the myna bird in Episode 6: "Realization Time".

 

Dale has an Uncle Al Cooper, his father's brother, who is somewhat of a con artist, magician, and gambler.

 

Uncle Al teaches Dale card counting for playing blackjack. The limited way he describes it here though (keeping track of every card in the deck) does not sound like the real world way card counting works. In real card counting, the player assigns points to groupings of the card faces and then adds and subtracts the points mentally to gauge how likely it is the next deal will yield an advantageous card to the current hand. Cooper seems to be using this traditional method at One-Eyed Jacks in Episode 6: "Realization Time".

 

On October 6, the Schlurmans go out to eat at Mr. Steak. This was a chain of steakhouse restaurants in the U.S. at the time.

 

On November 6, Dale reports that Nixon has been elected president. This is true, Richard Nixon was elected November 6, 1968 and re-elected in 1972, serving until his resignation due to the Watergate scandal in August 1974.

 

On December 18, Dale has a dream about a man he doesn't see trying to get into his room. The man calls his name and roars like an animal. This sounds similar to BOB or another malignant entity from the Black Lodge (as seen in later stories set in the town of Twin Peaks). When Dale tells his mother about it, she claims she knows about the man and that he must never let the man into his room.

 

1969

 

On February 10, 1969, Dale witnesses a murder scene being investigated by the police at the corner of Chelton and Greene. This is an actual intersection in Philadelphia, though "Chelton" should be spelled "Chelten".

 

On February 28, Dale expresses concern about the growing frequency of his erections. He finds that thinking very intently about Disneyland can help suppress them. This may indicate that he has been to Disneyland (located in Anaheim, CA) in the past, despite the distance from his home.

 

On June 10, Dale sees Anne buying a Willa Cather book for Nancy. Cather (1873-1947) was a novelist who embraced male values and who whom some scholars believe was a lesbian.

 

Dale reports on the Apollo 11 mission and the Eagle lander, July 16-21. The Apollo 11 mission lasted from July 16-24, putting the first men on the Moon, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin. The Eagle is the lunar module that landed on the Moon during that mission, landing in the Sea of Tranquility, a lunar mare region of the Moon. The first men on the moon seems to be a minor recurring motif in Twin Peaks; besides the mention here, Dr. Jacoby is seen to have a labeled drink unbrella in his collection from the date of the landing mission in Episode 7: "The Last Evening" and a post card has a "First Man on the Moon" stamp on it in The Secret History of Twin Peaks.

 

On July 16, Marie tells Dale she has not used amphetamines in six months. Amphetamines are a type of stimulant.

 

On July 23, a rival scout troop fights with Dale's at the Boy Scout jamboree and he suffers a chipped tooth. No mention is made of the chipped tooth after this, but he presumably got it fixed at some point.

 

It's not stated where the scout jamboree is taking place, but page 34 implies it is about 176 miles from Dale's home in Philadelphia. However, the official national scout jamboree that year (held every four years), from July 16–22, 1969, was held in Farragut State Park, Idaho, over 2,000 miles away!

 

Attempting to walk/hitchhike back home from the jamboree, Dale stops at the Post and Beam restaurant on Route 487 for a slice of warm cherry pie and his first cup of coffee. The Post and Beam appears to be a fictitious restaurant, though Route 487 is an actual highway in Pennsylvania running north-south from Shamokin Township to Dushore.

 

On July 30, Dale is picked up hitchhiking by a hippy couple in a VW bus on their way to protest at the Pentagon. The VW bus is the classic automobile most associated with the hippy lifestyle in the 1960s.

 

Dale is picked up hitchhiking by Allen K. Boyle outside of Bloomsburg and a man called Sparks outside Reading, PA.

 

In the early hours of November 15, Dale's mother is hospitalized at St. Joseph's in Philadelphia (now closed) for a brain aneurysm. She dies later that morning. Dale's description of an aneurysm is fairly accurate.

 

The Unitarian funeral for Dale's mother is on November 17. After the service, punch, ham, and Jell-O salad are served for the mourners at the Cooper house.

 

1970

 

On April 20, 1970, Dale's father discovers a new crater on the Moon with his telescope. According to page 194, he was able to name it after himself, Cooper's Crater, just on the edge of the dark side's shadow. As far as I can tell, there is no crater by that name on the Moon.

 

On April 21, April reads the poem "Gloire de Dijon" by D.H. Lawrence. Lawrence (1885-1930) was a British writer and painter. Dale remarks that he only remembers the last few lines of the poem, but those he records are just the last few lines of the first stanza; there is actually another stanza after it. Gloire de Dijon is a breed of rose originated in France, in the poem compared to a beautiful woman bathing.

 

    On May 25, Dale has a dream of being visited by his mother. When he awakes, he is clutching a ring that fits perfectly on his little finger. He shows it to his dad, who remembers it as one she had worn when they first met; it had been her father's and her mother had given it to her when he died. She stopped wearing it when they got married; he had no idea what happened to it after that.

    In Fire Walk With Me, Laura Palmer also sees a ring in a dream (the Owl Cave ring) and awakens clutching it. 

 

On page 46, Mr. Hord talks about George Washington's wooden teeth disappearing after his death, only to be mysteriously found 30 years under his bed by a maid. As far as I can tell, this myth was made up for the book. Additionally, Washington's various sets of false teeth were not made of wood as commonly believed, but of ivory or human teeth.

 

For their vacation trip with the Schlurmans to Promised Land Lake, Dale's father packs the Scrabble game. Promised Land Lake is part of Promised Land State Park in Pennsylvania.

 

Dale graduates from high school early by testing out of the remaining requirements on September 10, 1970.

 

1973

 

Dale's friend Bradley buys a Dodge Charger in spring of 1973.

 

After travelling for three years in a largely unrecorded portion of his life, Dale returns in spring of 1973 saying only that the whole universe is one bright pearl. This is a saying among followers of Buddhist religions.

 

During his travels, Dale found three things he is interested in: the circus, puzzles, and sex.

 

In 1973, Dale takes the SAT and scores 800 in both English and math. The SAT is the Scholastic Aptitude Test, a standardized college admissions test in the United States. 800 is the top score possible in each section of the test.

 

On page 61, Dale lists some skills of his: fire building, map reading, walking, knife throwing, chanting, breath control, bread baking, juggling, rice planting, and sitting in small dark rooms.

 

On page 62, Dale mentions Zen practice. Zen is a school of Mahayana Buddhism in China.

 

On July 1, Dale accepts an offer to attend the all male Haverford College. Haverford is a real world college outside of Philadelphia that started as a men only school, but has since been made co-ed since the 1980s.

 

Before heading off to college, Dale goes on a short vacation with his father to see Mt. Rushmore and Custer State Park. At Mt. Rushmore, Mr. Cooper remarks that Lincoln would not have wanted to be remembered as a large piece of granite hanging on the side of a mountain with rain dripping off his nose. Mt. Rushmore is a gigantic granite sculpture, in the rock of the mountain called Mt. Rushmore, of four of what have been considered America's greatest presidents, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln.

 

Mr. Cooper protests that Mt. Rushmore should be given back to the Sioux. The land was seized from the Lakota Sioux tribe by the federal government after the Great Sioux War of 1876.

 

Returning home on July 15, Mr. Cooper finds that the National Park Service has ordered calendars printed from his shop.

 

On August 21, Dale witnesses his first pep rally at Haverford College. A pep rally is a gathering popular in U.S. schools to encourage school spirit and support for the institution's activities such as sports, academic decathlons, etc.

 

On September 12, Dale receives a cassette recorder from his dad to replace his old reel-to-reel.

 

On September 15, Dale visits the nearby women's college, Bryn Mawr. He winds up with the worst case of post-alcohol abuse he's ever experienced through conversation that drifted through tequila, rum and Coke, beer, bourbon, and common household chemicals.

 

On September 25, Dale calls his father and learns that he is doing a brisk business printing "Imprison Nixon" posters. At the time, President Nixon was embroiled in the Watergate scandal, which had many citizens calling for his impeachment and prosecution.

 

On November 7, Dale attempts to follow someone who winds up killing a young woman and he believes the killer was within striking distance of himself when he discovered the woman's body. Dale mentions his own shaking hand during the moment. Is the killer related to the Black Lodge? Is Dale's shaking hand related to the shaking hands of various individuals (including Dale Cooper) in Episode 28: "Miss Twin Peaks"?

 

On November 23, Dale suffers from a 103-degree fever. He does not believe it is an infection, but an attempt by the evil that took the young woman's life to enter him.

 

    On December 28, Dale begins a sleep-deprivation experiment on himself. In Episode 8B: "Answers in Dreams", he comments on the effects of 3 days of sleep-deprivation.

    At 3 a.m., Dale wonders whatever happened to Ronald Colman and what was the name of the fifth Marx brother. I'm not sure what he means by the reference to Ronald Colman; he was an English actor in the 1930s-40s who died in 1958 from emphysema. The Marx Brothers were a comedy vaudeville and film act of brothers Chico, Harpo, and Groucho, and, during the vaudeville years and for a few early films, Zeppo. The fifth Marx brother, Gummo, did not appear in any films, leaving the act after vaudeville.

    Dale remarks that the test pattern used in television broadcasting is similar in its ability to clear the mind to the Tibetan prayer wheel.

    At 5 a.m., Dale sings along with the national anthem on the television. The U.S. national anthem is "The Star-Spangled Banner" by Francis Scott Key.

    At 9 a.m. Dale admires the perfection of design of the modern doughnut.

    At 3 p.m., Dale views Miss December. This refers to the Playmate of the Month in Playboy magazine. Miss December of 1973 was Christine Maddox.

    At 6 p.m., Dale checks all the closets in the house to be make sure none of the "little people" are hiding in them.

    At 8 p.m., Dale remarks that he has never liked the name "Dale" and always wished he had been born an Apache named Ten Sticks.

    At 11 p.m., Dale sings "99 Bottles of Beer". This is a popular drinking song in the U.S. and Canada, based on the British song "Ten Green Bottles". The Icelanders sing it in Icelandic in Episode 6: "Realization Time".

 

On December 29, Dale states his conviction that Lee Harvey Oswald did not act alone in Dallas. He also believes the death of Marilyn and that of the President were not unrelated. This refers to Oswald's alleged guilt in the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in Dallas on November 22, 1963 and the earlier death of Marilyn Monroe, now known to have been one of Kennedy's many illicit lovers, on August 5, 1962.

 

1974

 

On January 10, 1974, Dale learns to ski at the Fernwood ski area in the Poconos. This probably refers to the Fernwood Resort.

 

On January 17, Andy gives Dale a book on the Kama Sutra. The Kama Sutra is a world renown Hindu book on human sexual behavior composed in India between 400 BC and 200 AD.

 

Throughout the night of January 20 and early morning of the 21st, Dale records a tally of 14 to 14 with Andy in a study of mind/body limitations. This likely refers to the number of orgasms achieved by each.

 

On March 10, Dale walks through Central Park. Central Park is a public park in the center of Manhattan and one of the largest urban parks in the world.

 

On March 11, Dale mentions a coffee house in Chelsea. Chelsea is a neighborhood in the Manhattan borough of New York City.

 

On page 88, one of Dale's former college professors mentions him taking psychology courses Visual Information Processing, Thinking 3005, My Mind, Your Mind 4001, and Why We Forget 4002. With the exception of Visual Information Processing, these appear to be fictitious courses.

 

As he begins an internship in the mental ward of the county hospital on March 16, Dale remarks, "Is it true that as a species we are drawn to that one thing that most terrifies and confounds us? I am most excited. But if what I have just said is true, then I am not looking at a hospital. I am standing on the edge of the abyss." This is likely a reference to German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche's (1844-1900) quote, "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Later on, after returning from a 3-day disappearance, Windom Earle tells Cooper he saw the abyss and found wonderful things.

 

On April 6, Dale remarks, "I would very much like to walk hand in hand with a beautiful woman who I am deeply in love with," (presumably referring to Andy). In Episode 8A: "May the Giant Be With You", he makes a similar statement as he lies bleeding from a gunshot wound, "I would very much like to make love to a beautiful woman who I had genuine affection for," (presumably referring to Audrey). On May 1, 1978, he also records, "I would like to be in a high meadow in the Himalayas, living only for and within the moment." The Himalayas is a reference to the Himalayan Mountain Range in Asia which hosts the world's highest peaks.

 

On May 1, Dale attends a May Day ceremony at Bryn Mawr. His description of the event is quite close to that of the traditional European May Day celebration of the coming of spring.

 

On May 20, Dale sees a man who appears to be painted blue standing outside his apartment in the wee hours of the morning. The sighting is unexplained.

 

At job day on the college campus, Dale picks up brochures from the FBI and the Peace Corps.

 

Dale's father marries Charlotte at a little red chapel in Las Vegas, Nevada, the ceremony being performed by the honorable L.B. Johnson. The state of Nevada is known for its quick and easy marriage process. The marriage officiant may be named for former U.S. President Lyndon Baines Johnson.

 

While in Vegas, Mr. Cooper and Charlotte take in the ice skating show "Nudes on Ice". The real world show by that name did not start until the 1980s, featuring topless (not nude) women skating and performing song and comedy routines.

 

Dale recalls seeing Ice Capades when he was a kid. The Ice Capades was an ice skating show that travelled around the U.S., performing from 1940-1995.

 

Mrs. Johnson takes Polaroid snapshots of the Cooper wedding and couple. Polaroid is the company that introduced instant film to the camera community in 1948 and the photos taken on this film were often referred to as Polaroid prints or just Polaroids. The Polaroid company has not manufactured instant film since 2008 due to falling sales as a result of the popularity of digital cameras.

 

The new Mr. and Mrs. Cooper spend their honeymoon in Reno.

 

While his father and stepmother are honeymooning, Dale spends a day at Hoover Dam. The Hoover Dam is a large dam that produces hydroelectric power on the Colorado River along the border of Nevada and Arizona. Dale seems to be under the impression the dam was named after J. Edgar, but it was actually named for President Herbert Hoover, who began the construction as a way of employing U.S. citizens through public works projects during the Great Depression.

 

On July 5, Dale eats at the Lunch Pal restaurant in Philadelphia. As far as I can tell, this is a fictitious establishment.

 

On September 10, Mr. Cooper learns that he has become sterile and is not able to father any more children, which ends his marriage to his pregnant wife.

 

One of Dale's classes at Haverford was Medieval Epics.

 

Dale's disturbed girlfriend Lena takes classes in Shame and Mother and in Fear and Anxiety.

 

Dale and Lena visit her parents in Hershey. Hershey is a town in Pennsylvania and is the home of the Hershey's Chocolate candy factory.

 

On August 17, Dale says he thinks it was Holmes who said that truth is often arrived at by two roads pointing in very different directions. I have been unable to confirm a quote quite like this by the character.

 

On December 18, Dale meets Windom Earle for the first time at the FBI booth at a job fair at the Philadelphia civic center.

 

On December 26, Dale meets up with Ted, a former member of the 24th Street gang at Don and Jim's Body Shop in Philadelphia. This appears to be a fictitious establishment.

 

On December 27, Dale meets another member of the 24th Street gang and is beaten up by the man and a couple of his friends, with some other cloudy events also taking place in his foggy memory of the incident. Dale's description of the incident sounds somewhat similar to those that happen to the character of Jeffrey Beaumont, played by Kyle MacLachlan, in the 1986 David Lynch film Blue Velvet.

 

1976

 

In 1976, Mr. Cooper sells the family house due to bankruptcy. Dale empties his old room, keeping only about 20 items, including a Duke Snyder (sic) baseball card and a copy of Moby Dick. Duke Snider was a Major League Baseball player from 1947-1964. Moby Dick is a classic 1851 novel by Herman Melville.

 

On February 10, Dale remarks he is completing his final tests for early graduation from college and that he will submit his papers to apply to the FBI "as soon as I get the sheepskin." "Sheepskin" is an informal term for "diploma", as school diplomas were originally written on sheepskin.

 

Dale finds that he is one year short of the minimum age requirement to join the FBI. He would have been 18 years old at the time, making the age requirement 19, or more likely, 20 (he takes the FBI written test and interview in June 1977, after his 20th birthday in April). I have been unable to confirm that age requirement in 1976. When J. Edgar Hoover established the formal training course for new agents in 1928, the age requirement was 25-35. Currently, the age requirement is 23-37.

 

1977

 

Dale's whereabouts during the year until he turned 20 are unknown. In February 1977, he records the sentence, "Evil does have a face." No explanation is ever given. Possibly he finally saw the face of the man in his recurring dreams who is trying to get into his room who calls his name and roars like an animal and whom his mother warned him to never let in.

 

In August, Mr. Cooper sells the remaining stock of his moon maps to National Geographic, the magazine published by the National Geographic Society, known for its pull-out maps of regions of the Earth and even other planets in the solar system.

 

In September, Dale reports to FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia for 14 weeks of training. The academy is located on Marine Corps Base Quantico. The FBI's current academy curriculum lasts 20 weeks; I've been unable to confirm a 14-week one in 1977.

 

On September 12, Dale records, "Crime can be broken down into three simple categories: crimes of passion, crimes for gain, and crimes of insanity." In regards to crimes of insanity, he goes on to say, "It can, and often does, manifest itself as either of the other two. There is no more focused mind than the one that has created its own reality. And for that reason, it is the insane criminal who is to be feared more than any other. There is no gray area in madness. It is an absolute form of twisted truth." The crimes of both Windom Earle and Killer BOB could be considered crimes of insanity.

 

On September 22, Dale records that he studied the case history of extortionist Eugene L. Motts. As far as I can tell, this is a fictitious case.

 

A female classmate of Dale's at FBI Academy who graduates to become an agent is named Robin Masters. Possibly, Frost borrowed the name from that of the unseen novelist who owned the estate where private investigator Thomas Magnum lived in Hawaii in the 1980-1988 TV series Magnum, P.I.

 

As a gift for his graduation from FBI Academy, Mr. Cooper gives Dale his first pocket-size recorder.

 

Robin is the valedictorian for the FBI Academy graduation ceremony that year. In the U.S., the valedictorian is the student chosen to deliver the closing statement at the end of the graduation ceremony.

 

After graduation, Cooper is assigned to the violent crimes task force in the Pittsburgh field office. There, he is assigned a secretary named Diane. He describes her as a cross between a saint and a cabaret singer.

 

After becoming an agent, many of Cooper's tapes are withheld for reasons of security.

 

1978

 

On January 10, 1978, Cooper begins investigating a kidnapping in Perrysville. Perrysville is a town in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.

 

Also on January 10, Cooper explains why he has begun addressing his tapes to Diane. "Diane, I hope that you will not mind that I address these tapes to you even when it is clear that I am talking to myself. The knowledge that someone of your insight is standing behind me is comforting."

 

On January 11, Cooper visits the Petrini Smoke and Book Shop as part of the Chris Roe kidnapping case. This appears to be a fictitious business.

 

On February 4, Cooper meets Agent Albert Rosenfield for the first time. Albert's last name is misspelled here as Rosenfelt. This may have been a nod by Frost to the fact the characters in the show and in the Twin Peaks fan community often mispronounced his name.

 

On February 5, Cooper records that he fears the force behind his latest murder case is the same one he encountered at Haverford. He goes on to say, "I have not expressed this to anyone. The recognition that evil exists as an entity outside our understanding of life is not official policy of the Bureau."

 

On May 1, Cooper is stationed outside Eastern Savings and Loan during a hostage situation. Eastern Savings and Loan appears to be a fictitious business.

 

On May 2, Cooper reports that Windom beat him in chess in seven moves. "I have much to learn about the game of chess." On this same visit, Cooper meets Windom's wife, Caroline, for the first time and comments that she is a remarkable woman.

 

On July 2, Cooper discusses a dream he had as "more than random synapses discharging electrodes into my subconscious." I think he means "electrons" rather than "electrodes".

 

During the FBI agent portion of his recordings, Cooper dictates into his recorder at times while in action. This seems highly illogical, not to mention dangerous and unlikely to be approved of by his superiors in the Bureau. At one point (on page 135) he is even recording while moving through a building in which suspects may be hiding, potentially providing his location to the enemy from the sound of his voice.

 

On August 2, a case takes Cooper to an abandoned barge on the Ohio River. The Ohio River is a tributary of the Mississippi River that runs from Pittsburgh, PA to Cairo, Illinois.

 

On August 3, Cooper meets Gordon Cole, deputy director of the Criminal Investigation Division, for the first time. The real name of that division of the FBI is Criminal Investigative Division.

 

1979

 

In January 1979, Cooper is told to use some of his vacation time. He takes Windom's advice and visits La Casa el Corazon on a small Caribbean island where Windom and Caroline spent their honeymoon. La Casa el Corazon is Spanish for "House of the Heart". As far as I can tell it is a fictitious establishment.

 

On January 25, the old man Cooper meets at La Casa el Corazon says to him, "La muerte." This is Spanish for "Death".

 

During the night of January 26, Cooper has a dream or vision under the spell of what he believes was a powerful narcotic given to him without his knowledge. Part of the vision involved a "monkey's hand". Possibly this is a reference to the 1902 short story by W. W. Jacobs, "The Monkey's Paw", in which the possessor of a severed monkey's hand is granted three wishes which come true, but with an enormous price. This is also somewhat similar to what seems to happen to individuals who put on the Owl Cave ring (see Fire Walk With Me and The Secret History of Twin Peaks).

 

On April 10, a report of a woman meeting Caroline's description is reported in Lower Manhattan and the NYPD puts out an all-points bulletin for her. Lower Manhattan is the downtown portion of Manhattan Island, part of New York City. NYPD stands for New York Police Department.

 

On April 11, Caroline is found, suffering from heroin addiction and is checked into Bellevue Hospital. They also find small amounts of an unidentifiable drug in her system; on April 15, the same drug is found in her IV, causing a slight color change to the fluid. Jean Renault and Blackie also attempt to addict Audrey to heroin in early second season episodes of the series. In Episode 10: "The Man Behind Glass", Ronette Pulaski's IV is tainted with a drug that colors the fluid blue.

 

On April 20, Cooper refers to Windom Earle as "the best mind in law enforcement I have ever known." In  Episode 17: "Dispute Between Brothers", Truman says something similar about Cooper, calling him, "the finest law man I've ever known."

 

On May 20, Cooper reports that his father and Gordon have met and seem to have hit it off.

 

Caroline dies in 1979 here, but Cooper tells Truman it was in 1985 in Episode 13: "Demons"; this may be an intentional discrepancy in the established timeline as similar discrepancies occur in The Secret History of Twin Peaks.

 

On an unknown date after the death of Caroline, Cooper records the entry, "I don't know who I am. We search and search, and always end up looking into the same mirror, at the same reflection, hoping that we will find something different." This sounds like a reference to Leland's (and later Cooper himself) looking into a mirror and seeing BOB.

 

1980

 

On February 1, 1980, Cooper records that he believes that Windom was taken over by evil during his disappearance and then manipulated he and Caroline into falling in love so that he could have the pleasure of destroying it.

 

On February 11, when Cooper records a conversation with the insane Windom Earle in the institution, he asks Windom, "Where is Windom?" and Windom responds, "Around, here and there, over hill over dale . . . dale, I will hit the dusty trail." Windom's response is a play on lyrics from the official song of the United States Army, "The Army Goes Rolling Along", Over hill, over dale, we will hit the dusty trail. It is likely also a play on Dale Cooper's name.

 

On March 12, Cooper and Diane receive word they are being transferred to San Francisco. In May, Cooper travels with his dad by car most of the way to San Fran, passing through Terre Haute, St. Louis, Hannibal (where they visit the home of Samuel Clemens and Cooper laments not having been born 100 years ago where he could have been Tom or Huck), Kansas City, the Great Plains, the Rocky Mountains, Salt Lake (where he sees a large number of Mormons floating in formation just offshore of the Great Salt Lake), and Reno. Samuel Clemens (better known as Mark Twain) was an extremely popular American writer and humorist of the 19th Century; Tom and Huck (from the novels Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn) are two of his most well-known and popular characters, who spent their time rebelling against authority and having adventures on and along the mighty Mississippi River. The Great Plains are a broad, mostly flat, expanse of land covering portions of the Midwest states. The Rocky Mountains are a major mountain range in the western portion of North America. The state of Utah, and especially Salt Lake City, is the cultural center of the Mormon religion.

 

On May 7, Mr. Cooper gets married again in Reno, to a woman named Shamrock. They spend their honeymoon in a little hut on top of the Continental Divide. A continental divide is the (usually mountainous) hydrological divide of a portion of a continent. In this case, the couple would be staying at a peak of the Rocky Mountains.

 

Wondering at his father's whirlwind courtship and marriage to Shamrock, Cooper wonders if he was left at his parents doorstep by Gypsies. Gypsies are a nomadic ethnicity living mostly in Europe.

 

On May 11, Cooper finds an apartment with a view of the Golden Gate in San Francisco. The Golden Gate is the strait that connects San Francisco Bay to the Pacific Ocean. It is spanned by the world famous Golden Gate Bridge.

 

On May 12, Cooper makes a tourist visit to Alcatraz Island, home of the now-closed Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary.

 

During Cooper's investigation of the murder of a male prostitute, he notes that at least two other male prostitutes in the Mission District are known to be missing. The Mission District is a neighborhood of San Francisco on land that used to belong to the Mission San Francisco de Asís.

 

During the prostitute murder case, Cooper goes undercover as a gay man at a gay bar called Club Y. This appears to be a fictitious establishment. The name of the club is a reference to the Y chromosome of males. During Cooper's undercover investigation, Gordon tells him to watch his backside; this is probably a double-entendre joke by Gordon in reference to gay sex. San Francisco is a city known for its higher than average gay population.

 

On June 30, Cooper approaches a suspect in a blue Ford LTD with California license plate 203-CYH. The suspect turns out to be a salesman from Mill Valley. The LTD was a car model produced by Ford from 1965-1986. Mill Valley is a city about 14 north of San Francisco.

 

Later on June 30, Cooper pursues a late model Dodge Dart.

 

On July 30, Cooper is assigned to the counterintelligence task force where he remains for the next 6 years. The FBI has not released any of his tapes from that time. Only two short letters to his father in 1983 and 1986 are available. In the 1986 letter, Cooper remarks, "To the best of my knowledge and those here at the Bureau, you cannot contract Legionnaires' disease from unwashed fruit. From the sounds of it, you had a common case of food poisoning. Suggest Shamrock rethink the diet you both are on. I don't seem to remember a ban on refrigeration being an integral part of a macrobiotic life-style." Legionnaires' disease is a form of pneumonia contracted through inhalation of Legionella bacteria. The disease got its name from the first recorded cases of it among a group of people at an American Legion convention in Philadelphia in 1976. The "macrobiotic life-style" Cooper refers to is the macrobiotic diet, a diet regimen of mostly grains and vegetables, with occasional local fruits, seeds, nuts, and fish.

 

1987

 

In August 1987, Cooper spends time in a joint FBI-DEA drug interdiction program. It is here that he first meets DEA Agent Dennis Bryson.

 

August 24-26, Cooper evaluates a new investigative technique based on the writings of a Tibetan monk named Gumm. His first substantial tests of the technique suggest that Lee Harvey Oswald did not act alone on that fateful day in Dallas, and Jack Ruby is still alive and living in Peru. I am not aware of an historically prominent monk by the name of Gumm. It may be someone Cooper met or heard of during his travels in the unrecorded portions of his life mentioned in the book. Jack Ruby was convicted of assassinating Oswald before the man could be tried for the assassination of Kennedy; Ruby died of a pulmonary embolism in prison in 1967.

 

In September, Cooper works on a case with Bryson in Tijuana on a covert operation in limited cooperation with the Mexican government, entering from the U.S. border city of San Diego. The two agents stay at the Casa de Vista motel in Tijuana during the operation; Cooper complains of a lack of the advertised view from their room, so it's ironic that the name of the motel essentially translates to "House with a View".

 

On September 4, Cooper records that the drug seller drives a Mercedes four-wheel drive truck.

 

On September 10, Cooper mentions a maxim that Ulysses S. Grant lived by: overwhelming firepower, with maximum force. Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885) was the victorious Union general in the Civil War and, subsequently, the 18th president of the United States. I have not been able to confirm him living by such a maxim.

 

Page 181 mentions an article in the San Diego Mirror. The article mentions the Book of Job. The San Diego Mirror appears to be a fictitious newspaper. The Book of Job is one of the books of the Old Testament of the Bible.

 

On November 9, Cooper is assigned to a drug case in Oakland, CA.

 

1988

 

On January 7, 1988, Cooper receives a tape in the mail from Windom Earle with a threatening limerick on it, stating "There once was an agent from Dover". "Dover" is generally considered to be a reference to Dover, England, but Cooper, of course is from Philadelphia, PA.

 

On January 17, Cooper is assigned to investigate the Teresa Banks murder in Deer Meadow, WA, the southwest part of the state. This appears to be a fictitious town, though there is a small village called Deer Meadows in the northeast corner of the state, not too far from where Twin Peaks is alleged to be located! The date here is different than that stated in Episode 8A: "May the Giant Be With You", February 9.

 

Cooper catches a flight to Portland, Oregon, then rents a car to drive to Deer Meadow.

 

During the flight to Portland on January 17, Cooper asks Diane to remind him to bring a Thermos of coffee in the future, due to the low quality of the so-called coffee served on commercial air carriers. The term "Thermos" is capitalized because it is a registered trademark in many countries (though it is considered a generic term in the U.S.). Cooper also makes a disparaging remark about airline coffee in "Diane..." The Twin Peaks Tapes of Agent Cooper.

 

The investigation of the Teresa Banks murder presented here does not conform with that seen in Fire Walk With Me, largely due to Cooper himself being assigned to investigate the case, with no mention made of Agent Chester Desmond. This book was written before Fire Walk With Me was even considered, and when the film was being cast, Kyle MacLachlan only agreed to participate if his role was limited, so Agent Desmond was written in as the major FBI investigator of the case. This may be considered another discrepancy in the established timeline similar to those in The Secret History of Twin Peaks.

 

In Deer Meadow, Cooper meets with Sheriff Cable, an ex-marine. Cable appears in Fire Walk With Me.

 

Cooper refers to Cable's report on the murder investigation as a work of fiction worthy of a Pulitzer. The Pulitzer Prize is an award for achievements in journalism and literature.

 

Cooper states that Teresa's residence was unknown, but Fire Walk With Me reveals it to be the Fat Trout Trailer Park in Deer Meadow.

 

Teresa's body was found wrapped in plastic and duct tape. This is how Laura Palmer's body is also found in Episode 0A: "Wrapped in Plastic". But here, Teresa's body is said to have been found in a ditch, while in Fire Walk With Me, it was in Wind River.

 

Cooper records, "Teresa Banks last worked at a roadhouse about ten miles outside of town at a whistle stop called Cross River." Cross River appears to be a fictitious town. In Fire Walk With Me, the roadhouse she works at was called Hap's Diner, but here Cooper refers to it as the Cross River Café.

 

Cooper stays at the Loggers Inn in Deer Meadow. This appears to be a fictitious motel.

 

Cooper feels that the unknown evil he has come into contact with before is also responsible for the Teresa Banks murder.

 

On January 18, Cooper records what he knows of Teresa Banks' past: "She was born Teresa Mary Banks in Tacoma, Washington, on July 11, 1970, to Ellen and Tony Banks. At age twelve her parents were killed in a car accident, and she became a ward of the state. At age fifteen she ran away from a state facility and was not seen again until the day her body was found."

 

On January 20, Cooper reports that the small piece of paper with the letter T on it found under Teresa's fingernail was an acid-free typing paper, very expensive, with the typed letter appearing to be from an old Smith-Corona Model 99. I've been unable to confirm Smith Corona producing a typewriter Model 99, though it's certainly possible.

 

On February 2, Cooper reports having a dream the night before of dancing with "a tiny little man, and a very beautiful young woman." This sounds similar to his dream in Episode 2: "Zen, or the Skill to Catch a Killer".

 

In June, Cooper receives a tape from Windom Earle that mentions Bobby Fisher (sic) giving up chess and turning to God. Bobby Fischer (1943-2008) was an American chess grandmaster, considered by many to be the greatest chess player of all time. Fischer went into semi-retirement a few times and was a religious person, but did not officially quit chess due to his religious beliefs.

 

Cooper and Diane once had a social dinner together at a Chinese restaurant. Diane's description of the preparation of Peking duck is roughly accurate.

 

On June 11, Cooper admits that he does not know Diane's last name.

 

In July, Cooper has stops in Medicine Hat and Moose Jaw. These are both cities in Canada.

 

On July 24, Cooper remarks that his brother Emmet is now in South America and they have not seen each other in over 20 years.

 

On August 5, Cooper tells Diane that if she is ever in Flin Flon, she should stop at the Florida Cafe for a piece of strawberry mousse pie. Flin Flon is a mining city in Canada. The Florida Cafe appears to be a fictitious establishment there.

 

On a visit to Philadelphia in 1988, Cooper recalls having seen Bonnie and Clyde at the Band Box Theatre. Bonnie and Clyde was a 1967 film about the notorious bank robbers Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker.

 

On September 27, Cooper makes mention of the Civil Corps of Engineers. Possibly he is referring to the U.S. Navy's Civil Engineer Corps.

 

November 20, Cooper gives a talk at the Rotary. This likely refers to the service organization Rotary International.

 

Cooper laments on not being able to combat the malaise of boredom, remarking that Holmes' use of cocaine is unacceptable to him. It is true that Sherlock Holmes was depicted as a cocaine user in his stories. Cooper goes on to wonder if there are any more great cases like the Lindbergh kidnapping, a Brinks robbery, a John Dillinger, a Professor Moriarty. The Lindbergh kidnapping refers to the kidnapping, and eventual murder, of the 20-month old son of famed American aviator Charles Lindbergh in 1932. Brinks is an American security and protection company. Moriarty was the arch-nemesis of detective Sherlock Holmes in the Holmes novels of Arthur Conan Doyle. Cooper ends his thoughts with, "As the saying goes, be careful what you wish for, you may just get it." Of course, he does get it very shortly, with his assignment to the Laura Palmer case.

 

1989

 

On February 20, 1989, Cooper quotes Groucho Marx as having said, "Harpo, you talk too much." I have not been able to confirm Groucho making that statement, but Harpo did not speak in the Marx Brothers films since he was not good at memorizing dialog, so fell into the classic vaudeville character of the silent dunce.

 

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