Tuesday, December 17, 2013

When You Need to See

One of my dearest friends, Nicca Ray, and I were talking about an old movie director that she has been gathering stories on for a book about her father, the director Nicholas Ray. While not giving the story away, this famed director suffered ailments that required a lot of personal attention and limited his ability to accurately assess his work later in life--or so many people thought. However, that appeared to be a little trick of his. To paraphrase, he dropped bombshells like, "I see when I wish to see," etc. "I see when I wish to see" has become Nicca and my catchphrase of late. We have had many catchphrases over the years - she can be oddly indecipherable to others, something I never understood, because I understand her perfectly. Our editing teacher, the wonderfully wry Mr. Richard Pepperman, once called me "The United Nations of Nicca" because I'd translate her at the Steenbeck. No other students in class existed when we were with him and I'm sure they hated us, but it was a great time. In the edit bays, we stood side by side, me cutting to The Clash, she to Iggy Pop, unlit cigarettes in our mouths, mumbling but not incoherently, seeing when we needed to see. Naturally, in retrospect, we always see what we have needed to see. The events of the past week have been so tumultuous, quick and devastating but I cannot say I did not see. I saw what I needed to see. What I see before me now,  however, is ... that's what sends me on endless Hollywood walks, focusing on the small details, like neon, or sidewalk stars, or my favorite waiter's smile, or my 93-year-old man friend/mentor who insists that he has dementia as we assemble his photographs for his next retrospective and then argue over the cultural validity of Vince Edwards. I see things that he doesn't in Honor Blackman, but he sees things in me that I never considered.  Today I left the house with two distinct errands and got a parking ticket. A man apologized to me as I returned to my car. I laughed, saying, "It's my fault, you don't need to apologize for my ticket," and then he laughed at the absurdity of it all. Did I look at the sign? No, of course not, because other cars were parked there too! I even made another stupid mistake over an email name, all because I didn't look at the auto-fill. It's all there. We see when we need to see. It's all there, waiting for you.

4 comments:

Elizabeth Chapman said...

Whats funny is I was reading mr. Blunder and my sigjt was going in and out.

Donna Lethal said...

I need reading glasses now and I still don't use them which results in some pretty funny mistakes.

nicca ray said...

I wear bi-focals and I still misread things. DL, could that be because Mr. Magoo was one of my stepfather's?

Donna Lethal said...

Remember when Magoo taught you to drive?
I saw a sign for "Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones" and I thought it said "THE MARRIED ONES."