I don’t tend to be an envious person. I know I’ve got it pretty darn good, but sometimes, as I am positively human, and therefore absolutely imperfect, my little green monster rears its tiny head. And so it did during Julie and Julia, an utterly delightful Sunday afternoon movie, if ever there was one.
The film follows Julie Powell, a rather mousy Amy Adams, as she flounders at a considerably depressing and highly unsatisfactory job. All of her friends are wildly successful, with assistants, lots of money, and the like, while she can’t seem to get it together. Save for her saint of a husband and her love of cooking, she’d be one unhappy camper.
Enter Julia Child, played by the incomparable Meryl Streep (seriously, what can’t she do?), and the seminal Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Julie decides to make, as well as blog about, all of the 524 recipes in the span of one year. 365 days. A whole lot of cooking.
In the mean time, dear Julia is furthering her exquisite love of butter and eating, in general, while she flounders a bit herself. What is she to DO with her life now that she is no longer a spy? Okay, maybe this is a slight exaggeration, but she did work for the OSS in China for Pete’s sake. I digress a bit here, as the thought of this makes me chuckle – the six foot two inch gregarious woman in China? I don’t suppose they were looking for someone inconspicuous, were they?
Anyway, I watched with rapt attention as Julie and Julia struggle, in their own ways, to find fulfillment and happiness, their days chockablock with writing, perfecting recipes, and, of course, eating. Not to mention their fantastically supportive husbands, kind, patient, loving, and sexy, too. Though they aren’t without their troubles, either: failed recipes, complicated relationships, trouble at work, and infertility among them.
And this is where I circle back to me. Me, me, me. It is my blog, after all. I could not help but identify with these women as they struggled to find someone to take an interest in their work, to share their passion, and, ultimately, to one day be published, to feel as though their time and sincere effort had not been lost or wasted.
I count myself in their fine company knowing that, first and foremost, the work is for the person doing it. Just as Julie and Julia cooked and wrote to save themselves from despair and boredom, I write to express my love for life and this wondrous third planet from the sun. Then, like them, it is my great hope that others will find my work and be inspired or tickled or perplexed by it and keep coming back for more.
But where they found success in the form of published works, television shows, and movies, I have yet to do. This is where I turn a slightly green hue, where I cry just a little bit and feel sorry for myself. Don’t fret, however, as it doesn’t last terribly long, for like the movie and these fine women in real life, I know good things are on their way and the music will turn from maudlin to cheery, and I will be reminded that life truly is sublime.
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