April 2008

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You might not know this about me, but I love movies.  When I started this whole blog endeavor, I knew that I would write about them, but what troubled me was deciding which one to write about first.  Some might say, how about your favorite?  Ooh la la! The word favorite is very tricky because it is so exclusive.  Here’s an example:

What is your favorite food?

Well, what time of day is it?  Are we talking breakfast? Lunch? Snack? Dinner?  Dessert?  What is the weather like?  Am I feeling melancholy?  Happy?  Mellow?  I mean gosh, there are so many variables to contend with.  Yikes!

So here we are, after doing some serious calcualting, I arrived at Drugstore Cowboy, what I believe to be Matt Dillon’s finest work.   The other actors aren’t too shabby either.  I think this is Heather Graham’s first.  And if you’re a Sex and the City fan, you’ll recognize Gentry right away.

To say that my mind is blown every time I view this film is putting it mildly.  There are so many reasons to love it. 

First off, the characters, and their very calculated means of staying high and breaking the law, are very real.  Yet, I can’t help but root for them, especially Bob Hughes (an aside – this is always my bowling name).  He’s a dope fiend, thief, not-so-nice person, but I like him more and more as the film progresses.  Perhaps it is his honesty.  This guy knows precisely who he is and what he’s doing.  

Second, the cinematography, coupled with the lovely landscapes of the Pacific Northwest, is amazingly beautiful.  I love the cows and hats dreamily floating through the moisture laden sky. 

Third, this movie is filled with wonderful one-liners:  “What’s a transom Bob?”  “Lord, it’s my dope fiend thief of a son and his crazy little nymphomaniac wife.”  “Jesus, Bob, you never told us anything about not mentioning dogs.”

Fourth, the soundtrack is mighty fine: “The Israelite,” “For All We Know,” “Psychotic Reaction,”  and many more.

Then there’s the story, it always comes back to the story.  For me, it is a wonderful coming of age tale.  Bob finally learns what is important in life and is willing to pay a very high price for it.  So very, very good. 

When Martin Luther King, Jr. died on April 4th 1968, I was three years from being born.  As a white girl, living in a predominantly white neighborhood, I would only be scarcely aware of his existence until I bought my favorite U2 album The Unforgettable Fire in 1984.  Despite this pathetic history, he is ever present in my life now, providing me with a shining example of goodness, bravery, intelligence, and wisdom. 

There is rarely a day that passes that I do not think of him and find inspiration in his deeds and words.  Through them I find my own strength and courage.  Here are just a few: 

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

“The hope of a secure and livable world lies with disciplined non-conformists who are dedicated to justice, peace, and brotherhood.”

“On some positions, Cowardice asks the question, ‘Is it safe?’  Expediency asks the question, ‘Is it politic?’  And Vanity comes along and asks the question, ‘Is it popular?’  But Conscience asks the question ‘Is it right?’  And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but he must do it because Conscience tells him it is right.”

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

“The strong man holds in a living blend strongly marked opposites. The idealists are usually not realistic, and the realists are not usually idealistic. The militant are not generally known to be passive, nor the passive to be militant. Seldom are the humble self-assertive, or the self-assertive humble. But life at its best is a creative synthesis of opposites in fruitful harmony. The philosopher Hegel said that truth is found neither in the thesis nor the antithesis, but in the emergent synthesis which reconciles the two.”

This is me now, sending a little prayer out for peace and happiness to all.  Infinite blessings upon your path…

In January, after one of my quarterly trips Buffalo Exchange to sell and donate clothes, I had an epiphany.  If I “am” my possessions, why am I constantly getting rid of them?

What does that say about me?  “I am constantly getting rid of me?”  Why do I have so much of myself that I don’t need?  Which brought me to the next question – what, in life, do I really need?

I’m sure you already know the answers.  So, then and there, I made a decision to do something that I previously considered radical.  I would not buy any clothes until June.  I love clothes! 

Then, after looking at the giant pile of other miscellaneous junk waiting to be chauffered off to the Goodwill, Gregory and I decided together to not make any purchases, besides necessities, for our entire household until June.  No clothes, no shoes, no gadgets, no art, no CD’s.  Zip, zilch, nada!

Our start date was February first, and, with the exception of an Easter Lily ($6.49 at Trader Joe’s – brain fart!), we have kept our word.  It’s been really exciting, not just to see the savings add up, but to know that we can set a limit and stick to it.  

By my calculations, after a couple years of whining that we didn’t have the money, we’ll have enough to reupholster some chairs that are in dire need (darn kitty claws).  Who knows what other seemingly monumental task will be within our grasp?  I can’t wait to find out!

The picture is what our garden looks like in June, full of flowers and lush greenery.  Right now, there are some weeds and a few sprouts.  I think I forget that we already have all we need – with a little patience, the blooms reveal themselves!

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