Thursday, June 19, 2008

Haiku: Movie, date, job

Moment: sell out shlock
Christmas tears, your just desserts

Speed killed kids, I quit

1. Worst Movie:
Moment by Moment (1978) with John Travolta and Lily Tomlin. A review (see below) says "A failure compared to nearly anything you've seen in your life", which explains why 30 years later it is indelibly, painfully etched in movie-memory.

Also, I am so sorry a
(now out) lesbian and an (alleged) gay man were talked into "acting" in this vomitously lame love story (which was written by Tomlin's long-time partner, the usually brilliant Jane Wagner). Review capturing its full awfulness here.

2. Worst date
:
If you call it a date when you are married to somebody, this has to be when my then-husband left for several weeks to "take time to think" but actually was cavorting with a new woman (as opposed to the 'old' women I was already dealing with).

When he returned to announce his decision (he was leaving), it was just before Christmas. He thought I should not be alone on Dec. 25, so he took me to dinner at an intimate, posh restaurant, where I wept nonstop, resulting in

1. Abysmal service because the waiters were terrified to approach

2. Poisonous looks from families there to make merry or at least have a pleasant meal


The Sequel: We divorced, he married her, they lasted five or six years, during most of which she was miserable because, news flash, he ran around. I was single for five years and then married le Duc, an absolute lambchop.


3. Worst Job:
With a newly minted MA, barely 22, I was hired as a counselor in a government drug treatment agency in a gritty, industrial city. I had a wise, kindly Dutch boss and a caseload of tough, often funny, substance-using adolescents right out of The Wire.

Their overdoses, suicides and fatal accidents tore me up. I see their faces as I write: Whitey, Karen, Greg. Al, who was straight for awhile, then broke into a hospital and boosted a supply of morphine. And their parents, angry, frantic or buried in their own alcoholism. After three years, I felt like a casualty too and got out of the people-patching business forever.


I can't pull a life lesson out of that movie (other than 'be who you are'). That last dinner was my first step toward really growing up. The job taught me that addiction has very little to do with intelligence and a good deal to do with what kids experience in their first few years.

Thanks for tagging me, materfamilias!

1 comment:

materfamilias said...

I'm so glad I did -- as I expected, your response is entertaining and clever, and it fleshes out the wisdom behind your style/fashion commentary.