Granted: A New View of An OLd Favorite

Today I watched An Affair to Remember.  An old favorite for many reasons. One through one hundred being Cary Grant. Even now, no male movie star comes close. How could they? He never disappoints. Even a “bomb” with him in it is eminently enjoyable.

I don’t recall why I tuned into this, or how. But there it was on You Tube. And I couldn’t resist.

Call me nostalgic. Who cares? The past is with us right here, right now,  at every moment, in more ways than we recognize. It connects me to my romance gene. And I choose to honor it with both sentiment and longing.

I’ve attached  a clip from the movie.  Watch it. And see the most romantic, sexy, classiest scenes, without any real sex in them at all. A look. A glance a nod, a raised eyebrow, a flirtatious smile, was all it took

Today, they hammer us over the head with whatever it is they want us to feel and  know. They tell us. They show us.  Then they tell us they told us and show us again, to make sure that we get it. They don’t trust us to get it on our own. Cary never did that. He didn’t need to. All he had to do was to “be there”. A hand in his pocket, that look on his face.

Grant created himself anew at the age of fourteen. From humble beginnings. From his father’s lie about his mother’s death. Then learning 20 years later she was alive and well, he literally tumbled and leapt his way into a new life in the U.S where he struggled on stilts at Coney Island, then made it to the Broadway stage, and on to Hollywood. After that, the way opened and it never closed.

Married five times, rumored to be bi-sexual, a rumor he neither confirmed nor denied, and while in his sixties, fathering a daughter and diving into the off- limits world of LSD as a form of psychotherapy and an exploration of spirit,  he walked a walk like no one else’s. Even the wives he left in his wake, loved him to the end. They couldn’t help themselves.

They say George Clooney is the new Cary Grant. They are Wrong! There is no new Cary Grant. There never will be. There’s only one Cary Grant. The one who left us too soon. It doesn’t matter that he was 81. I miss him. And wish he were here.

But I guess we need to make do with what we have. I’m glad I’m not young anymore. This way I don’t need to fake it. I don’t even need to try.

 

Word Power

The night before she died, Joan Rivers performed at a club in New York and spoke these darkly prophetic words:

 ”I’m 81 — I could go at any moment, I could fall over right here and you all could say, ‘I was there!’”

She was off by only a hair”s breadth. And she was far too close for comfort. Yet as she riffed on death, death seemed a million miles away. One big joke. But the universe had other things in mind. Things for which Rivers failed to account. Like the fact that the power of Words is great, indeed, and not to be joked with. Unless it’s okay if the joke’s on you.

Coincidence? I don’t believe in it. Bad luck? I think not. Randomness, Chaos? Too easy. Too pat. A poor excuse.

Existence Vibrates, So Do Words 

Existence is vibration. We exist, inside and out, of what we think, say, and do. Everything: you, me them, the street you stand on, the chair you sit in,  the food you eat, carrots, chocolate, potatoes, and steak, the color of your shirt,  boiling water, ice water, still water, the sound of music, pain, pleasure, birth and death.  It’s all vibrating, moving, open and susceptible to our thoughts. Certainly to our words. Remember: First there was the Word.This is not witchcraft, or woo woo, or new age feel good. This is science. Go. Look it up. Go Check it out.

My Christian Scientist Aunt Warned Me

So we had best watch it. Watch what we think. What we say. Not be so cavalier. Not unless we’re disinterested passersby, alien presences in a world, strangely and  invisibly connected. When I was a child my Aunt Roy, the Christian Scientist,  insisted I not say “hate.” I thought she was being silly. It was only a word. As an adult, I see she was right. I stop myself when that word comes sailing out of my mouth. I try not to use it. For when I do, it reverberates in my consciousness for hours.

I wish that Joan had said something else. I wish for once she hadn’t been too big for her bloomers. Though I  disliked her cruel edge,  her craving for worshipful attention, I was in love with how she could make me laugh. She was smart as a whip. The best at what she did. And she did it easily and often.

Rest in peace Ms. Rivers. And the next time around, Please! May you draw the line when it comes to laughing out loud at death. Especially your own.


Remembering Joan

I found a New York Times clip on line today — A montage of Joan Rivers moments. Seeing how she changed herself over the years is both amazing and scary. Before she put on the  Zsa Zsa face, she was no ugly duckling. Indeed, there was a time when she looked quite lovely. But Joan wanted more than lovely. She always wanted more.

 

I never really liked Joan. Her mean streak put me off in life, as it did on stage. But despite my judgment call on her character, she made me laugh. I loved her wit, her work, her ceaseless energy, her fearlessness, her devotion to making her audience happy, and to them loving her, at least a little.

I once had a dream where both Joan and Woody Allen made brief appearances. In the dream, Woody was my friend. He liked me. Joan was not my friend. She didn’t like me. In fact she hated me. For years, when either of these people were mentioned, by me or anyone else, I explained that Woody liked me, while Joan hated me. It became part of my shtick. It made me famous by association..

Though I never actually met Joan, I did come face to face with Woody at the Cafe Carlyle some years ago. He was walking toward the stage to perform with his jazz band, I was on my way to the ladies room. The aisle between the tables was so narrow he stepped aside so I could get past. And call me crazy, but I swear there was a moment of recognition. How could there not be? We had already met in my dream.

The good thing in all this, a kind of blessing really, is that Joan was in top form to the end. No withering away. No extended painful illness. She went out looking and performing the way she wanted. At the top of her game. No downturn. No dementia. No final act. She was the energizer bunny of female comedians. Like Robin Williams, when she was out there, on stage, she kept going and going and going. But unlike our dear tortured Robin, she wanted to live forever. And I get that. For so do I.

Use this image if you dare to experiment with Living forever:

Eternity

Close your eyes, breathe out one long exhalation, and see yourself living forever. No beginning no end, just you and eternity. See, sense, feel, and know this endless state of being. Cast off your fears and be.in this one timeless moment. What happens how do you feel? What do you see, learn, discover, know?
Then breathe out, return, and open your eyes.