Let’s face it, when I watch this movie I feel nothing less than Complete Joy, and if I tried to explain to you why that is, it just wouldn’t work. Either you know what I'm talking about or you don't.
Tyler getting the “perfect” sock in the ear.
Marla “not making a big deal out of it.”
That bathrobe. Those slippers. That guy with the hose.
You know - just every second of it.
And then there's this: Tyler explaining -- over a lye-soaked hand -- the importance of accepting one's own death.
Part of what he says (and I'll skip to the chase, here) is this:
"First you have to give up. First you have to know -- not fear, but know -- that you are going to die."
Good old Tyler. He's telling us what we have to do to achieve enlightenment, I guess. Or maybe he's just telling us what we have to do in order to relax and recognize what's important so we can finally start having a good time for once in our lives.
Sock it to me, Tyler-baby.
And then there's Paula Deen, who says kind of the same thing.
And while I wouldn't exactly say that Paula and Tyler are as alike as two peas in a pod, I will say that they do have a thing or two in common.
Because when The Queen of Adding Butter, Mayonnaise and Cheese to Simply Everything did an interview with Larry King last August and described how she recovered from her agoraphobia, one of the things she said about getting over it and finally starting to enjoy her life, was this:
"I accepted my mother's death, my father's death, the death of everybody that I loved. I accepted my own death because I couldn't change that, you know. None of us are going to get out of this alive."
Well sock it to me, Paula-baby, too! My heroes.
But enough about them. Now I'm going to tell you about me. Because just after this last New Year's Day I was diagnosed with breast cancer.
Spoiler and not to tell you how to feel about this or anything but: I'M FINE!!!
I really am. I was told after the biopsy that this cancer was aggressive, and learned, too, that the pathology report contained an item that didn't look so hot, so about a week ago I can tell you that Robert and I were pretty scared.
Imagine our happiness, then, we we learned on Saturday that my scans (bone and PET) show that there is no sign of cancer anywhere else in my body.
Oh, man. Let's hear it for straightforward, simple, curable breast cancer!!!! I'm not kidding you guys -- all I have to do is get rid of this, which'll be a snap, you know, especially when compared with the alternatives.
Sigh. I feel wonderful.
Which brings me back to those peas I'm in the pod with, sort of. Because one thing I've been given the chance to know --not fear, but know -- is that I'm going to die one day. And so is everyone I love. Which may include you, by the way.
Now. Why should this make me so happy, and don't you just loathe rhetorical questions?
I'll tell you why anyway: Because now I can stop wasting valuable time fearing the reality of my "someday" death and the "someday" deaths of my loved ones, too, and start spending that time enjoying this here moment right now.
And I'm not saying I didn't fear my own death last week, but I will say that there was a "click" at one point -- a "change of channels," as my friend Julie would put it. I went off the "fear" channel and turned onto the "this is real" channel, and I'm here to say, for what it's worth, that Love transmits much more clearly, definetly, and practically on this reality channel than that fear one.
So maybe that's what Tyler's talking about, and Paula, too.
Anyway: I think I'd like to talk about this some more, because I gotta tell you -- there's vampires a'plenty to contend with on this journey.
So I'll keep you posted.