Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Tuesday Reminiscences slash Paper Heart

Tyler and I watched Paper Heart last night. Well, more like, I watched it while Tyler sat next to me and read a book, but I think it mostly counts.

It's a documentary about comedienne Charlene Yi and her quest to figure out what love is and/or find it, as she believes she's never been in love. Throughout the movie, she interviews people who have been or are currently in love, and somewhere along the way, she meets Michael Cera at a party and... yadda, yadda, yadda.

The movie, I felt, was generally just OK, but I thought it was pretty interesting hearing people talk about falling in love, and what that was like. A few people mentioned the "lightening bolt" aspect of falling in love. The crazy, euphoric high of being with another person.

This did not happen for me (sorry honey). So, for today's Tuesday Reminiscence (I know, you're thinking, 'does she still do that?'), I thought I'd tell a story of something that dramatically shaped my views on love.

When I was a freshman at UCSB, I knew that living in the dorms would be my own personal hell, so I asked my brother (who was attending UCSB at the time) to ask around and find me a roommate. Through an amazing stroke of magical-ness, one for which I will be forever grateful, he (or his wife) hooked me up with Vivian. I don't think she could have a better name, because living with her was so fun and lively and vibrant and exciting. Vivian comes from a family of 6 sisters (Claire, trusty friend and neighbor and also one-time roommate being among them), and grew up in a rural town outside Fresno. That year, she invited me home for Easter.

On their property, they have a little concrete patio-like area among the trees by the creek, and we were all sitting around, chatting. Vivian's older sister, Beth, was there with her husband and small children. Someone called Beth's name and asked her to do something, but she didn't hear. She was just sitting there, staring at her husband with the most contented, happy, peaceful look on her face. "Beth! What are you doing?"

"I was just... admiring my husband," came her answer. He was also just sitting there, not doing anything particularly manly, or impressive. (Although, my memory is not particularly reliable. He could have been chopping wood with his shirt off, or something... but I don't think so.)

At first, I thought this was bizarre. I didn't have much experience with love; my parents got divorced when I was 16 and I don't remember them ever staring at each other.

I soon forgot this small encounter. A few years later, I met Tyler and we started dating. As we moved toward that 'are we, aren't we' moment, I caught myself just looking at him and smiling. In a flash, I remembered Beth and Tim and the patio. And, I knew.

How does love work for you?


Binkley said...

I was the premiere of this film at Sundance and I feel I should point out that is a pseudo-documentary. Most (if not all?) of the stories are true, but some people have been replaced by actors.

Also the main story (Charlene Yi's story) was written up to have an ending and the documentary director is an actor, the real director is behind the camera.

Tyler Ball said...

I feel I should say my lightning bolt moment was when I first saw Amanda chopping wood with her shirt off.

A.Calder said...

danielle made me a sandwich while I watched a car show, then after she did the dishs she gave me a back rub. And I just thought "this feels right"

Myriah said...

Yeah, I watched Paper Heart and thought, "huh."

And that was all I thought about it.

I wanted to think more, but I just couldn't.

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