I rent movies, all the time. I go to Family Video, and get a few– some Raisinets.
Almost always, a love story. Comedies.
I just watched a new one– “My Blueberry Nights.”
It’s one of my favorites– a quiet film. About people, and what makes them human. Their losses, addictions, and moving on. About taking risks, trusting, and healing. About the power of ordinary people, working regular jobs.
The main character is Elizabeth, played by Norah Jones. She ends up visiting a NYC coffee shop run by Jeremy, (Jude Law) on a brokenhearted night. She calls to find out of if her boyfriend is there– to learn that he shared pork chops with someone else. She drops off a set of keys, with instructions that Jeremy deliver them to the jerk if he stops in. She begins a ritual of stopping by to check if the keys have been picked up– they haven’t.
Then, Elizabeth begins stopping by just to chat with Jeremy. They don’t flirt. They hardly even laugh. Just two people, sharing time together, in a raw state.
He listens, and one night tells her about the guaranteed blueberry pie that’s left over at the end of the night– untouched. Jeremy faithfully makes this blueberry pie. When she asks what’s wrong with it, his answer is perfect.
Jeremy: “There’s nothing wrong with the blueberry pie. It’s just people make other choices. You can’t blame the blueberry pie. It’s just, no one wants it.”
“I want a piece,” Elizabeth volunteers.
With that simple conversation, their relationship is cemented. From acquaintances, to friends, with an act of nurturing from Jeremy. And she becomes the one customer who chooses the blueberry pie– because no one wants it. She then begins stopping in for the pie itself– and we suspect, the company of Jeremy. The simple routine of blueberry pie with ice cream feeds Elizabeth, and Jeremy falls for her.
Haven’t we all felt like that blueberry pie? What a beautiful metaphor.
I love that idea. That we don’t need to be any different, or better– than we are. We just haven’t yet met the person who likes the blueberry pie. Even better, I like that Elizabeth is the only person in the movie who chooses the blueberry pie. Who would think the idea of soul mates could be expressed in such a simple way? One flavor of pie, meant for one person. It’s also reassuring that Elizabeth never asks to try another flavor. The blueberry is for her– and it’s all she needs.
Then one day, Elizabeth gets drunk. After another evening in the cafe, she leaves town without saying goodbye. She writes Jeremy post cards, but never a return address. He tries to find her– by phone calls, post cards. She works various jobs in a diner, a bar, a casino– serving people, and saving up for a car. She listens to her customers, the way Jeremy listened to her. She doesn’t make judgments, doesn’t say much. She serves everyone equally, and makes a gambler friend. She bets high, and wins.
Elizabeth ends up back in NYC– and at Jeremy’s coffee shop. She’s recovered her broken heart, bought a car, and become whole.
Their reunion isn’t dramatic– just two friends, not surprised– and happy. Though it was unspoken, they both have been waiting for each other. And we know that the time is right for Elizabeth and Jeremy– that they now will share more than blueberry pie.
Lately, I’ve been in a quiet mood. I have’t called or made plans with many people– preferring quietude. I feel like just doing simple things, and creating small routines. I’m listening more, talking less.
I feel good. I haven’t been posting much. I’m just writing more quietly, to myself.
Like blueberry pie, this phase of being quiet is calming– a simple routine. Usually after seeing a movie I enjoy, I’ll look it up on imdb.com, and Rotten Tomatoes. Read the trivia, quotes, and movie reviews.
But today, I just want to write what I think– and quietly share it.