|One of many (many. many) soulful glances.|
I needed a little vacation on Saturday night so I rented "Eat, Pray, Love," with Julia Roberts and I have to honestly report that, despite an apparently new-found acting technique of intense nostril-quivering, she looks as luminous as ever.
For those of you unfamiliar with the book-turned-movie (I haven't read it but learned all about it on Oprah, of course), it's about a woman who reaches a point in her life where she decides to reawaken her senses, sensually and spiritually, by spending a year traveling through Italy (Eat), India (Pray) and Bali (Love).
In Italy, she discovers the joys of unrestricted eating...the close-ups of both pizza and pasta leaving me little choice but to go to the kitchen to boil water and assemble ingredients for an ambitious midnight snack. The rich reds of the sauces in the movie had to be created by chopping fresh tomatoes and so I did, mincing garlic and grating cheese while the cats gathered to stare. If they could have spoken, they would have explained that not only can Miss Roberts afford a few extra pounds on her willowy frame but that this "snack" would cause epic heartburn that would keep me up, moaning,until sunrise. In the movie's Italy, everyone was friendly and gorgeous, seemed to love Americans and spoke plenty of English.
India was magnificent, as well. While Julia sought spiritual enlightenment, however, I was preoccupied by her cute little earrings and groovy embroidered tunics. Despite the emphasis on selflessness, I proved exactly what I'm all about by wishing not for oneness with spirit but oneness with cheekbones just like hers. I also now want to travel there and renew my marriage vows in a flower-filled Indian ceremony. Seth hates to travel and is more likely to agree to gender reassignment surgery (except, of course, if Beyonce invites him to India. In that case, he'll be packed and waiting--tail wagging--at the airport within an hour).
From India, Julia's off to Bali, where,of course, she rediscovers the ability to love with none other than the dashing Javier Bardem. Javier portrays the "perfect man." In touch with his emotions, a doting father and unashamed to wear his heart on his sleeve, he makes Bali the fulfillment of the final concept of our heroine's odyssey. Bali was gorgeous, too but tsunami-anxiety and an abject hatred of monkeys has ruled it out as a stopping point along my own journey.
Speaking of which, my journey has been and will continue to be a lot less glamorous. Though I am perfectly capable of just as many searching glances and soulful stares as Miss Luminous can muster, I will be wearing elastic pants and sweating like a stevedore. Javier Bardem will mistake me for someone's mother instead of the one with whom he will rekindle his own damn abillty to love again and, somewhere along the way, I will become disoriented in a chaotic open-air market while searching for cute earrings and wake up to find that someone has left me in a tub of ice after removing one of my kidneys.
So, I think I'll skip the travel and stay local. Despite my lack of cheekbones, I've learned plenty--both petty and profound. Oprah, however, has not yet called me to appear on her show. I'd be more upset about that if there wasn't plenty of left-over pasta in the fridge.....