Sunday, May 24, 2009

Love for Randy the Ram

Finally saw Oscar sleeper The Wrestler last night. Tremendous movie. Sad and honest, but filled with the beauty that only comes from a life long passion.

So certainly I don't want to pay short shrift to the true meaningful messages of the film -- in the end you really only have the life you created. Would you rather have the one thing you've been obsessively passionate about, or the many human parts of life you missed? One particularly cool tenet of the movie is that Randy clearly drove his path, and still can. He's not invincible and far from perfect, but he's driving the bus of his life and can even steer it significantly if he chooses. Unlike many others in the world, he's never really whipped around by the random impact of life. As one of the co-stars says, "like always, I'm the heel and you're the face." People want him to have whatever he chooses. He just needs to make the choice.

While significantly less important in the grand scheme, I was extremely taken by the deli counter scenes. Scenes where he's demeaned, amused, confident, and finally self-destructive. I love the wry approach he picks up to making the best of an otherwise belittling situation. He's a showman, and a wonderful one.

But beyond that, it entirely reminds me that people -- in this case the customers -- have these few weird places in life to show their ass, and the deli counter seems to be one. There is little as frightening as a bitchy little old lady at the deli counter in a New Jersey Stop & Shop. You know she doesn't pull that attitude anywhere else but at the deli, in her car, and probably at the DMV. Why should the deli man take the brunt of your years of attitude?

But when a sales counter like that is humming, it's a show, and a fun one. It only takes one person to crack a joke about the chicken breasts. So I figure we all get to drive the bus a bit, at least on the tone of the situation. Best to enjoy the moment.

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