Brought my dad to see ROOM at the Angelica Theater tonight in NYC. The ineffable movie, directed by Lenny Abrahamson, starring Brie Larson and Jacob Tremblay (who plays her 5 year old son, and who I do believe will be nominated for an Oscar. The kid is A STAR! A beautiful little, shining star). contributed to the roller coaster of a ride of emotions I've experienced having my Dad visit me here in my apartment in NYC throughout this past week. It's been one of the few times he's been here since he moved out and into his own apartment, an Assisted Living facility a few year ago. Yes, in case you didn't know, my father lived with me in my NYC apartment after my Mom died in 2007. I couldn't leave him alone. I didn't know what to do once she was gone, nor did he. The day she died I looked over at my Dad, who was bent over my Mom's body on that gurney, moments after she died, and I said, "Don't worry, Dad. You can come live with me.
And he did.
ROOM. It's what we New Yorker's live quite comfortably. We are not forced. We are not prisoners. It may not always be THE easiest way to live, the cheapest place to live, but we do it. We want to do it. We are proud we have the constitution and temperature to "do it." ROOM. A relative concept.
I am fortunate enough to have a "real" ONE bedroom apartment in NYC, in Chelsea, which is considered pretty damn special considering most people who live in NYC do not get more than "A ROOM", never mind an bedroom with an actual door with hinges and a lock and door knob (it' matters, trust me), a kitchen that I can actually bake a cake in without standing in a tub (yes, a friend of mine years ago had an apartment on the LES and her bathtub was IN THE "KITCHEN", which was actually a closet with plumbing). I have an actual living room with a TV and real couch and chairs and coffee table… Yup, I do! I have proof. People have visited my home, lived with me in this home. I'm one of the lucky NYer's not to open a set of cheap wooden louver doors that are really the doors to a closet, then pull out a Murphy Bed and have a guest sit so close to me that it would be difficult to tell what "this visit" was all about. You get my drift. I have an apartment. People who live in the suburbs, people with big homes, people who couldn't imagine living in my home, always say, "Wow, you must really love it in NYC, huh?" It's sorta the same as saying, "Are you really X nationality?" "What does it feel like to be X?" "You don't seem like you're from Enfield, CT." Huh! Interesting, these questions, aren't they? I hold on to some of these memories and words. ROOM for interpretation Leave ROOM for open conversation about such issues, Hope. ROOM.
In the movie, ROOM, there are many references to sky, leaves, real people, fake people, earth, cartoons, trees, smells, backyards, dogs, TV, space, love. I found a red leaf on the walk home after the movie. I took a picture of it. I placed the red fall leaf in the mouth of my little nut cracker dog that I keep on my working / writing desk. I call him my pet. Jack, the little boy in the movie had an imaginary pet he named LUCKY. My little friend, my little nut cracker pretend pet dog's name is DOG. I name everything eponymously: A stuffed bear is BEAR. A stuffed animal dog is DOG. A girl puppet is GIRL. My favored Tiffany lamp is LAMP. The man who fathered me is Dad. You get the point.
You have to see this movie. The movie entitled ROOM. I know it will ring a bell, touch a nerve, strike a chord, I know it. The tag line of the movie is: LOVE KNOWS NO BOUNDARIES. It's true. This is true. Love transcends the moments you want to scream when your 87 year old parent is dawdling, or leaving the water running in the bathroom, leaving the keys in the door, pulling away from you when you grab him back from oncoming traffic in New York fucking City, walking slower than a snail when you think, when you KNOW he can walk faster than THIS…when he's repeating the same story you just discussed minutes ago, when he states aloud that he's staying for TWO WEEKS when you outline the visit for 8 DAYS, not 14 or 16 or 20, but EIGHT DAYS and there are "words."
But tonight, ascending the 4 flights of stairs to my apartment, after seeing this incredibly touching film at the Angelica Theater together, after sharing a strange dinner at Arturos, where the pianist played Burt Bacharach at an unprecedented tempo, a blur like Rimsky-Korsakov's Flight of the Bumblebees, and all the while 100 year old wait staff yawning & watching customers from their peripheral vision, moving like the wind, but oddly not attending to any one table adequately (we forgive Arturo's—the venerable Village restaurant that I've fallen in love, had a break up and some other "unspeakables"—let's just say there is a tub in the customer bathroom, a chalkboard and chalk, too. Enough said).
As my dad wheezed, literally wheezed while climbing these fucker 4 flights of stairs, I turned to him tonight and said to him, during mid step to the 3rd floor landing, "Dad, I have some good news…at least I don't live on the 6th floor." He laughed. Looked at me. Took the last 5 steps up to the 4th floor landing to my apartment and said, "There is no 6th floor."
Touché! Love knows no boundaries. Guess he loves me despite all my baggage and personal crap, too. Oh, Hope. There's always ROOM for improvement. There's ROOM.