Incidentally, I loved a lot of films in the 2000s, and here's an alphabetical list of some of them:
Adaptation, Almost Famous, Amélie, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Brokeback Mountain, Catch Me If You Can, Dreamgirls, Elf, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Finding Nemo, I’m Not There, The Informant!, Junebug, Juno, Kill Bill Vol. 2, Milk, The Royal Tenenbaums, Shaun of the Dead, Spider-Man 2, The Station Agent, Up, WALL-E, Wet Hot American Summer, Wonder Boys
“'You appear to me so superior, so elevated above all other men,' she said, 'I contemplate you with such a strange mixture of humility, admiration, revenge, love, and pride that very little superstition would be necessary to make me worship you as a superior being.'”—"Up, Aloft in the Air," Donald Barthelme
“How was it possible to be afraid and in love, Therese thought. The two things did not go together. How was it possible to be afraid, when the two of them grew stronger together every day? And every night. Every night was different, and every morning. Together they possessed a miracle.”—The Price of Salt, Patricia Highsmith
“The left won’t let you eat trans fats!”—Claim I was 100% sure I heard my uncle making at our Christmas gathering this evening. My father, who was actually paying attention, says that my uncle was actually making an analogy of some kind when he uttered these words. But I’m going to conveniently ignore that fact for the sake of comedy.
“Oh Linus! I think I know just the park of which you speak! Yes, there is a fine contingent of pigeons there, but I also recall once seeing a small boy running from something unseen, which (it now occurs to me) might have been a flock of invisible pigeons.
I was very interested in the work of Dr. T.R. Escher that you spoke of earlier, and read a few of her studies in the last week or so. She seems like an enormously intelligent and probably very pretty woman, with a lot of insight into the lives of pigeons. I’ve found that her work is best complimented by the studies of Professor L. Van Pelt, who is based in County Kerry, Ireland. Van Pelt is actually an incredibly good-looking farmer whose farm boasts, alongside two aptly-named horses, a number of very fine pigeons. I must say, Van Pelt’s line of thinking is so congruous with Escher’s, one can’t help but imagine that a collaboration between the two would be a most lovely and joy-making one.”—It’s possible that early on in our relationship, Kevin and I conducted flirtatious conversations in code in the comments of articles about pigeons on the New York Times website.
In our last workshop on Monday the professor asked, “Why do you write?” and people started saying things like “Therapy!” and “Because I didn’t want to follow the career path I’d started as an undergrad!” and “I use it to communicate with the world and three-dimensionalize things” (???) and “Because not writing began to feel like a disease!” And then the professor asked if anyone wrote for a different reason and I answered exactly as follows, question marks at the ends of my sentences and all: “Because I like writing? I think it’s fun? And I think I’m pretty good at it? And I like to laugh at my own jokes? And give my stories to my friends and sometimes they laugh too? And it’s pleasurable?”
The professor liked this. Then she said that she hoped none of us were in it for the money, because there was no money in it. I kept quiet then but outside in my red hat with every breath visible, I told a classmate, “I fully intend to make a lot of money out of this.”
Kevin laughs at the fact that though I am ridden with guilt and panic and doubt about every other move I make in life, my confidence in my own ability to write is invulnerable (he laughs because he loves. Right? Right?!?!). And maybe someday I will be rudely awakened (when in fifteen years all of humanity communicates via Twitter), but right now I’m feeling good. Right now I’m all choked up because one of my favorite writer-peers sent me an e-mail today with the sentence “I know you’re realizing your genius” in it, and I am just happy to be doing the thing that makes me happy, the thing I do the best.
I had one of those nights where you can’t sleep and it’s like you’ve suddenly entered a dimension of hell. I lay down at 11 p.m. and was still awake at 3:45 a.m., so that should give you an idea of how bad it was. There was a lot of helpless silent weeping, tossing and turning, inhaling panicky breaths and exhaling desperate sighs. And Kevin slept soundly through the whole thing. At around 3 a.m. I got the idea that maybe I needed to sleep in my own, freezing apartment (really good idea?) and so I started to write a note to leave on my pillow to explain my absence, but what I wrote was “cant’sleep” followed by a series of question marks (thanks for everything, grad school!) and so I decided that it was probably inadvisable to enter the outside world at that moment. I lay back in bed. Then suddenly, Kevin started crying out, “NO! YOU CRAZY BASTARD! DON’T EAT ME! NO!” and I touched his arm and he woke up and asked what happened and I told him what he had said, and basically we just giggled until we were all tuckered out.