Saturday, June 30, 2012

We'll Miss You, Nora, Said Every Woman

Thank you, Nora Ephron. How many women have laughed, cried, and jabbed each other in the ribs over scenes you wrote in your wonderful screenplays? How many essays have we read and nodded in agreement? How many times have I looked at my neck in the bathroom mirror and remembered your hilarious and slightly stinging essay about it failing me? Try every day. Every. Single. Day.

"Our faces are the lies and our necks are the truth."  Was any more bitter truth ever spoken? But even while complaining more entertainlingly than anyone else you were able to remind us not to fall into the pit of self absorbed despair, because we do, after all have choices.

 “Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim.”

There was plenty of your advice that I wish I'd known earlier so have could have followed it religiously...

“Oh, how I regret not having worn a bikini for the entire year I was twenty-six. If anyone young is reading this, go, right this minute, put on a bikini, and don't take it off until you're thirty-four.”
 I Feel Bad About My Neck: And Other Thoughts on Being a Woman 

And then, of course, there were your screenplays. Films that women love and quote endlessly. They had those fantastical creatures, men who talk about women the way we want someone to talk about us and to us the way we want to be talked to.

(It occurs to me now, that men must really hate that.)

And on top of all of that, you did that really remarkable put our thoughts and feelings into words. Which is why we love you. Which is why when we run across one of your films while channel surfing we stop and watch until the man in the room asks "How many times have you seen this?"

To which we reply "How many times have you seen Tombstone?" because saying that we have seen You've Got Mail 56 times is something we don't really want to confess. 

What blogger hasn't felt this:  The truth is, no one knows about me. I feel like I'm just sending things into this giant void." ~Julie and Julia

 You've Got Mail

"The odd thing about this form of communication is that you're more likely to talk about nothing than something. But I just want to say that all this nothing has meant more to me than so many somethings." ~Kathleen Kelly 

 (Ah, the power of words)

“Sometimes I wonder about my life. I lead a small life - well, valuable, but small - and sometimes I wonder, do I do it because I like it, or because I haven't been brave? So much of what I see reminds me of something I read in a book, when shouldn't it be the other way around? I don't really want an answer. I just want to send this cosmic question out into the void. So good night, dear void." ~Kathleen Kelly

(What woman hasn't wondered that...)

Sleepless in Seattle


 "Well, how long is your program? Well, it was a million tiny little things that, when you added them all up, they just meant we were supposed to be together. And I knew it. And I knew it the very first time I touched her. It was like coming home, only to no home I'd ever known. I was just taking her hand to help her out of a car and I knew. It was like ... magic.



 Annie: "Now that was when people knew how to be in love. They knew it! Time, distance . . . nothing could separate them because they knew. It was right. It was real. It was . . ." 

Becky: "A movie! That's your problem! You don't want to be in love. You want to be in love in a movie."

(Isn't that EVERY woman's problem? Maybe every man's too, but those are different kinds of movies.)

Julie and Julia 

"I am way ahead of the others in this class, all men! All of them very unfriendly until they discovered that I was fearless, something I realized about the same time they did." ~Julia

 "What should I do, you think? I don't really want to go back into government work. Shouldn't I find something to do? Wives don't do anything here. That's not me, it's just not me." ~Julia

  "Someone is going to publish your book. Someone is going to read your book and realize what you've done because your book is amazing. Your book is a work of genius. Your book is going to change the world. Do you hear me?" ~Paul Child to Julia Child

(I secretly suspect that one of the reasons that women love this film, aside from the focus on food,  is because of how we see Paul talk to Julia.)


Streep: "You know, this is not your mother's house where you do something like that and everybody thinks it's cute."

Nicholson: "If it's not my mother's house, then why are you talking to me like I'm your kid?"

(Totally nailed both sides of this male/female dynamic.)

And thank you, Ms. Ephron, for reminding us that daisies are the friendliest flower, how spectacular Cary Grant was in An Affair to Remember, and that sometimes the perfect come back at the perfect time will only leave us feeling sorry and mean.

Good night, Nora. We'll miss you. 

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