Monday, January 11, 2016

"That Reminds Me Ofr Someone"

It was a startling revelation.

This post is appearing today, January the 11th, the day I officially bid adieu to my Upper Right wisdom tooth, and my Bottom Left one.  The post itself was written some two or so weeks earlier.

That’s what I do.  I write posts ahead of time – call them “Safety Posts” – so that if I am unavailable to write one day, the “Safety Post” will satisfactorily fill the gap.  While, in this case, they are creating one in my mouth.

The thing is, I am reluctant, bordering on stubbornly unwilling, to fill an “Open Writing Day” with a “Safety Post”.  Even though that is exactly the objective the “Safety Post” were intended to perform.  My reasoning being…

If I use up my “Safety Posts”, I will not have any “Safety Posts.”

I realize how that sounds.  But I am not backing away from it, although it appears some re-thinking is in order, as I am standing on unfirm, questionably reasonable ground.

Not that my position isn’t true.  It is true.  If I do use up my “Safety Posts”, I will indeed have no “Safety Posts” left.  Notwithstanding the fact that using the “Safety Posts” is what the “Safety Posts” are for.  Otherwise, what’s the point?

Sorry.  I am still not using them.

(It is difficult, I am noticing, to make a persuasive argument when you’re wrong, my “Logic Boat” filling rapidly with water.)

Yet despite that…


That’s when the “startling revelation” showed up.

We “FADE BACK” to 1967, and a movie I really like called Two for the Road, written by Frederick Raphael.  Two for the Road intermixes a number “road trips” in Southern France taken by the same couple at various stages of their relationship.

In one interlude – when they are hitchhiking teenagers – the couple is picked up by an upscale American family, including their obstreperous, permissively-raised offspring.  When the boy, during a tantrum about something, throws the rental car’s car keys out of the window, the boy’s parents and their passengers are left searching for them by the side of the road.

When Albert Finney – of the hitchhiking young couple – asks William Daniels, who plays a controlling, supercilious nincompoop whether he has a replacement “spare” set of car keys, the William Daniels character haughtily replies:

“If we use the ‘spare’, then we won’t have a ‘spare.’”

Are you noticing a connection here?

When I first saw Two for the Road, that line made me laugh as hard as I had ever laughed in my entire life, harder – I immediately discovered – than anyone else in the movie theater. 

There were literally tears streaming down my cheeks, and, though the movie inevitably moved on, I continued laughing hysterically at that line.

Why did I laugh so hard?

Because, I realized decades later, that William Daniels character…

That's me.

Only I’m worse, because, while the William Daniels character is opposed to using the sole “spare” set of car keys – and I totally identify with his reasoning – I have, at the moment, more than ten “Safety Posts”…

And I am unwilling to use any of them. 

Making me ten times the controlling, supercilious nincompoop than the William Daniels character!

How about that?

Will this illuminating insightful change me?


If I use up my “Safety Posts”, I will not have any “Safety Posts.”

That is simply the way it is.

And there’s not a thing I can do about it.
Personal Update:  Due to a persistent cough, my rendezvous with dentistry was pushed back for another week.  That means that anyone who wants to make the heroic gesture and go in my place?

There's still time.


Wendy M. Grossman said...

I would, but I haven't had wisdom teeth for 30 years...

I too like TWO FOR THE ROAD. Worth noting that William Daniels was married to Eleanor Bron in that movie, and Albert Finney to Audrey Hepburn. The child was indeed awful. Finney, in response: You still want a child? Hepburn: Yes. Just not *that* child.

Jacqueline Bisset also featured in a small role - her first, I think.


Pidge said...

This is one of my favorite films, too. Great structure and characterization. Riviera scenery for dessert!
Side note: the child is a little girl with the most 'farbissineh' face ever seen on a child actor. No Margaret O'Brien, Natalie Wood or Shirley Temple, she!
I love the scene in the car when Daniels character "Howard" goes into raptures describing the elaborate anti-venom snake bite kit he's brought along and Finney comments, under his breath, that he certainly hopes someone gets bitten so the purchase is not in vain.
Earl...use up the 'spares'. There's more where they came from. Really. Don't hold out on us.

frank said...

Only way I could work up a dentist visit was by thinking of the joys of laughing gas.

FFS said...

I don't wear my good sweater because then it wouldn't be my good sweater. Not my only piece of unused clothing.