Tuesday, July 5, 2011


I actually went on a date this past weekend, which is a rare and wonderful thing. Sadly, the date was not with Jon Stewart, who has apparently yet to realize we are soulmates. Until that happens, though, David is pretty good company. David seems to be trying to postpone the day that I finally sail off and leave him by reminding me on a regular basis how short Jon Stewart is. I realize he doesn't want to hear about my celebrity crush, but I will make it up to him by being very generous with the alimony.

David and I went out to see a movie, and got my sister to babysit the kids. I'm not originally from Madison, but I moved here after college, and when my sister graduated from college in Pennsylvania and wasn't sure what to do next, I suggested she move to Madison. She's been here ever since and lives about a mile from us. My 1999 self didn't think about all the potential free babysitting when I convinced my sister to move here, but my 2011 self sure finds it handy. Nice job, 1999 self!

My sister has been a huge help with taking care of the kids. She doesn't have any children, and for the past five years she's been doing us child-related favors. If and when she does have kids, we are going to owe her BIG TIME. I figure we're going to have to let her (hypothetical) baby move in with us for the first couple years, just to even things out. My sister will come and visit on alternate Tuesdays.

Because we were a little late to the
movie, we didn't even get popcorn.
That's how bad it was.
So David and I decided to go out and see a movie, with my sister babysitting the kids. We decided to go see The Tree of Life, which I knew nothing about other than it had gotten good reviews. (This is what's known as foreshadowing.) We headed to the theater, and I was slightly miffed with David because I thought we were going to be late. So we agreed that if the movie had already started by the time we bought our tickets, we'd go see something else.

Well. Let me tell you, it mattered not one whit whether we were on time to the movie or not. This was a very, very unusual movie that I also found to be very, very bad. I think I would have liked it better had I been stoned. But even though we went to the fancy theater in town that offers upscale refreshments, that particular kind of refreshment was not on the menu. 

I bailed on the movie after about half an hour. A quick Google search shows that I wasn't the only one. As I walked out, I did some soul-searching, asking myself whether it was possible I had so much exposure to formula-driven, mainstream movies that I didn't recognize true quality when I saw it. But in the end, I decided that it's okay that I like narrative and story-telling, complexity and mystery in a movie. It's hard to pack those qualities into a movie about the creation of the universe. And the movie starred Brad Pitt yet it didn't even make him look cute. If that's not a reason for walking out, I don't know what is.

David decided to stay for more of the movie, and I hung out on bench outside the theater, reading a book I had stashed in the car. If I have learned one thing in my 37 years on this planet, it's to always have a book stashed in the car. Ideally that and some Mike's Hard Lemonade, but in a pinch a book alone will do. 

As I sat outside, a friend happened by, and she took pity on me and gave me $10. This meant that I could go to the cafe and have a treat and read my book, which is pretty much my idea of great evening anyway. A date with myself, if you will. 

Flavor: spinach-saffron-caviar.
David wound up bailing on the movie too, in part to keep me company. We decided to hit a fancy chocolate shop, the kind with really elaborate flavors, like lemongrass-shittake-oyster. Each individual piece of chocolate costs $2 and you're supposed to eat the chocolate slowly and savor the distinct flavors. This is a change from my usual approach to chocolate, which is to shove it in my mouth and look around for more.

After the chocolate, the date was over and we headed back and relieved my sister. David and I don't get to go out very often, and we're already looking forward to the next time we can do it. I might give my sister a break, though, and see if we can get somebody else to stay with the kids. Do you suppose Jon Stewart is free?

1 comment:

  1. I have to say that I am SO relieved to hear that I was not the only one who really didn't like this movie. We saw it on Ken's birthday, so I didn't feel like I could walk out. I was tortured by the whole thing and Ken LOVED it, so I've been feeling really shallow for not feeling the same way. I'm glad someone else is in that camp with me--not that I'm saying you're shallow, maybe just realizing that I'm not!?