Last night I was in the mood for a movie so I checked to see what was on HBO. (For some reason, Verizon gifted us with three free months of HBO so I’ve been taking advantage of it.) Moonstruck was one of the offerings, one of my favorite films. So many lines in that movie are ones that have been adopted by my own family: “Snap out of it!”, “I’m confused,” and “Bring me the big knife!” are a few.
After the movie ended, I wracked my brain trying to remember where, when and with whom I saw this movie. Was it ten years ago with my husband? No, it must have been made in the 90s, I thought, since the World Trade Center buildings figure so prominently in a few of the scenes. Then I convinced myself I’d seen it with a boyfriend in the 1990s. To verify, I checked IMDB, where I was stunned to learn this film was released in December 1987. Then I remembered: I’d seen it during my senior year in college … over 25 years ago!
It seems like yesterday I saw Moonstruck in a theatre, and indeed there’s little about the film –sans the Twin Towers– that dates it. Yet I can’t remember who was with me: the guy from my hometown in CT who I pined for my senior year? A blind date set up by my ex-boss? Perhaps I saw it with my college friends … my mind is blank on the details, except for how much I remembered from the movie: the plot, the argumentative Italian-American family, much like my own argumentative Irish-American family; the funny, clever one-liners.
Today I’m peevish and melancholy. I think how fast those twenty-five years have slipped by me. Yet, when my eyes tear up, I think of how much has changed. In 1987, I was unsure of myself or what I wanted to do with my life, even though I harbored the hope of becoming a writer of some sort. I remember all the years I spent working in advertising, then marketing, feeling like the proverbial square peg in a round hole. I remember turning 30, when suddenly I wanted to settle down yet everything around me was in flux. I met my husband when I was 32, we married, we had a baby in 2001. Now that baby is 12, a funny, articulate sixth grader who spends at least 30 minutes every morning getting his hair just right before he gets on the school bus. I’ve beaten cancer, said goodbye to my last two living grandparents, and traveled all around the world, visiting countries I’d dreamed about as a child. My corporate days are long behind me, and after countless magazine articles, four non-fiction books, and two novels (published under pseudonyms), I can unashamedly call myself A Writer. And now that I’ve reached that goal, I find myself casting about for my next act: a nurse? An MSW? I just want to feel useful, to feel like I’m making a difference in someone’s life: I’ve closed the book on chasing money and fame.
Looking back at those 25 years has reminded me how much really has happened, yet how much slid by unnoticed. And rather than continue to feel melancholy about it, I’m determined now to capture more of it so that the next 25 years –which I’m sure will fly by even faster than the last quarter century — can be more accurately measured for its riches.
It means I will post here more frequently about the seemingly mundane, but special things I want to remember. Of course I will continue to talk about all things Anglo that catch my fancy, but you’ll have to forgive me if I veer off the path, which may happen more frequently than before.
Onward to 2038!