Lorna Thayer's Chicken-Salad Days

Lorna Thayer, Jack Nicholson and Karen Black in "Five Easy Pieces"

Lorna Thayer with Jack Nicholson and Karen Black in the fabled diner scene. Columbia Pictures hide caption

itoggle caption Columbia Pictures

Actress Lorna Thayer died recently, at 86. She had suffered from Alzheimer's disease. She made a career of minor roles, but she left a lasting impression as the by-the-rules waitress who served a rebellious Jack Nicholson's character Bobby in the 1970 film Five Easy Pieces:

Bobby: I'd like an omelet, plain, and a chicken salad sandwich on wheat toast, no mayonnaise, no butter, no lettuce. And a cup of coffee.

Waitress: A #2, chicken salad sand. Hold the butter, the lettuce, the mayonnaise, and a cup of coffee. Anything else?

Bobby: Yeah, now all you have to do is hold the chicken, bring me the toast, give me a check for the chicken salad sandwich, and you haven't broken any rules.

Waitress: You want me to hold the chicken, huh?

Bobby: I want you to hold it between your knees.

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