I was talking tonight with Charlie, a dear brillilant friend of mine from high school who's been through hell with me (he's in Mom's Cancer as the one who gets Mom the prestigous doctor who saves her life). Charlie was helping me focus my life plan, kindly asking me to reconsider having biological children, and...may have convinced me to keep my baby grand piano.
This problem is not new to any of my close friends or family, but is certainly new to my blogreaders. See, I have this very expensive albatross around my tiny porcelain single-lady neck. It's not easy to find an apartment that I can afford that affords me the luxury of keeping the baby I've had since I was nine.
I studied classical piano for 12 years, and it's not really something I talk about. It's perhaps the only thing I do JUST FOR ME. I don't perform for people like a trained seal. Piano is my only pure emotional outlet for my loneliness and longing and melancholy; and as mom said, I make the piano weep. (Again, picture Marion Dashwood). That's not something I share.
Besides, growing up I found playing Russian dirges and endless Liszt wasn't really a popularity contest winner among my peers.
But music is in my blood, and of course it informs all my writing and filmmaking. Particularly my editing choices. But truly, even when I write a script, one reason I'm praised for nailing mood and dialogue is because in my head I'm already hearing the musicality of the scene.
It's been an accepted conclusion with my next move (my lease is up), I'd be selling the baby. Because I have to get rid of half my stuff yet AGAIN, and this time I actually want to. I want to scale down, live more simply, and be in a space I can lock up and leave to travel or go make movies or join the Peace Corps or whatever. I'm done with being owned by my family heirlooms. I don't want to be the ancestral memory keeper anymore. And boy that piano is filled with pain.
But Charlie, being a classical pianist and proud owner of a Steinway upright, reminded me of fun times we had gathered around the piano back in high school. He remembered me just learning the Twin Peaks theme song and playing it at one of my theme parties. Gosh we were happy back then. He talked about the sound a concert piano makes, and how even if I only play it three or four times a year it could be worth it to my soul to keep it.
And the old family joke about me: that I could always sleep under or on my piano.
His new take? "Maybe it's like a Spartan shield. You either come home with it or on it."
Zut alors. He had to go and challenge my warriorhood.
Sigh. Now I have to dig deep and find my inner bulldog.
It's not enough to be a struggling, dissident female artist in the most competitive, misogynist, high-stakes industry in the world. Now I have to win carrying the weight of my underdog constituents and a 500 pound baby.
Well, if it's time for a female winner on The Biggest Loser, maybe it's time for Hollywood to make room for one more y chromosome-impaired auteur.
Hoo-ra masterchief. Bring it.
By the way, Charlie's other insights over the course of us drinking and eating dinner together via cell phone were equally compelling. As he said, sometimes we all just need to think a little more like Elinore Dashwood. He also reminded me of Juptiter's machinations in Cymbeline:
Whom best I love I cross; to make my gift,
The more delay’d, delighted.
I promise, gods. My delight would be infinite. Now.