Yesterday I got to see The Time Traveler’s Wife. I’d see the previews and sigh wistfully and say to my husband Tom, “Doesn’t that look like a fantastic movie?”
“No,” Tom replied bluntly because unless a character in the movie blows up or has an elaborate sex scene, he’s not interested.
I went by myself. I used to be freaked out over seeing a movie on my own. Would people think I was a total loser? But here’s the thing: other people really don’t care about you in a movie theater so long as you don’t block their view or chat on the cell phone during the movie.
I walked into the theater armed with my popcorn slathered in butter and salt and my large diet coke (hey, I meant to get a medium but the teenaged girl behind the counter chirped, “You can get a large for fifty cents more!” and I’m sorry, that just seemed like a fantastic deal..) and found a seat in the middle. No one else had arrived yet so I sat there munching on my popcorn and watching the trivia on the screen. Did you know that Drew Barrymore was the younger person ever to host Saturday Night Live? (She was seven.)
Of course, sitting there alone in a darkened room can be a tad disconcerting. I have this fear that a Crazy Guy will be hiding in the back and will leap out in the middle of my popcorn feast and grab me. So I kept turning around as I ate to make sure no one was going to race out. As I was reassuring myself that I wasn’t sharing the room with one of the guys I saw on America’s Most Wanted, two women walked in.
Surely Crazy Guy wouldn’t strike with other people in the room?
You wouldn’t believe all the commercials that air in before the movie. Not previews. COMMERCIALS. I was a little irritated as a commercial for Coke filled the screen. I see enough commercials at home, thanks. I don’t need to see it before my movie.
Then the previews began and it showed one for The Lovely Bones which is a fantastic book. Go read it. I must see that movie.
Thirty minutes later, the movie finally started.
It was….okay, I sort of felt the way that I do when I’m watching Lost. I wasn’t quite sure what was going on. One second Eric Bana was there, the next second he wasn’t, then he was old, then he was young….
I felt like I was in math class again when I couldn’t comprehend why my teacher was trying to get me to understand this thing called a matrix. Wasn’t a matrix a movie? Why was she pestering me to figure out a number?
Oh, you also got to see Eric Bana’s butt twice, but I wasn’t impressed. He’s not my type. Plus I was distracted because I know he speaks in an Australian accent and I had just heard him talking in the movie Funny People in that accent—and then there he was, prattling on in an American accent and I was all, “But no, you’re Australian…”
Also, there is a kid named Alba in the movie. What kind of name is Alba? I understand it for a last name but as a first name? That also was distracting. I kept thinking, “Who would name a poor kid Alba?”
The movie was okay. I thought it would be better. I’d never see it again unless someone offered me a baked good in return for watching it with them.
Still, it was nice to get out.
When I returned home I noticed that Tom’s truck wasn’t in the driveway. Where did he go? Did he leave a message on my cell phone? I turned it back on (I’m a polite movie patron and always turn my phone off—this is something that other people need to learn to do because they STILL text and that’s DISTRACTING. Stop it) but there was no message.
I unlocked the door and hoped to find a note from Tom.
But no, the man has grass for brains and there was no note. So I sort of walked around the house a few times in confusion. I didn’t quite know what to do.
Write your novel. Take advantage of the silence….
So I settled down at the computer chair and brought up my novel. But I just stared at the words as though they were in an entirely different language.
Where did everyone go? Did one of the kids get hurt? WHAT IF HE’S AT THE ER?
I practically lunged for the phone and tapped in Tom’s number.
It went straight to voice mail.
DID SOMEONE ABDUCT THEM?
I started pacing the house again. I was so busy trying to determine what had happened that I didn’t hear the front door open. I nearly collided into Tom.
“Move,” I barked and then realized, hello, he was who I wanted to see!
My eyes immediately swiveled to the children, who looked healthy enough.
“Is everything okay?” I said, resisting the urge to add, “You idiot with grass for brains!”
“Everything is fine,” Tom said, giving me a baffled look.
“I mean, I came home and everyone was gone….”
“I had to drop something off at the office,” Tom said with a shrug.
“And you couldn’t leave a note?”
Tom blinked at me.
“Oh never mind.”