florafloraflora (florafloraflora) wrote,
florafloraflora
florafloraflora

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Amy Hempel; Love Actually

So I’m being a good girl and reading The Collected Stories of Amy Hempel the way the New York Times’s 10 Best Books of 2006 list told me to. I have to share with you this one-page story:

In the Animal Shelter

Every time you see a beautiful woman, someone is tired of her, so the men say. And I know where they go, these women, with their tired beauty that someone doesn’t want—these women who must live like the high Sierra white pine, there since before the birth of Christ, fed somehow by the alpine wind.

They reach out to the animals, day after day smoothing fur inside a cage, saying, "How is Mama’s baby? Is Mama’s baby lonesome?"

The women will leave at the end of the day, stopping to ask an attendant, "Will they go to good homes?" And come back in a day or so, stooping to examine a one-eyed cat, asking, as though they intend to adopt, "How would I introduce a new cat to my dog?"

But there is seldom an adoption; it matters that the women have someone to leave, leaving behind the lovesome creatures who would never leave them, had they once given them their hearts.


I finally watched Love Actually over the weekend, three years late, I know, but I liked it. Good stuff, hugely entertaining, and it was nice to see the Prime Minister finally stand up to the US even if only on film. Only… the sequence at the end, with the boy in the airport? Why why why why? Why did it go on so long? I wasn’t buying it at all. I was waiting for him to be shot, which would be horrible, but then if he didn’t get shot it would just be goofy. It made me cranky. Oh and the part in Milwaukee was just ridiculous. Still, I will probably end up watching this again, and maybe even adding it to the Christmas-favorites lineup along with Bad Santa and The Grinch.
Tags: movies, reading
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