I had a fun conversation about music tonight, and because I can’t think of anything in life without relating it to a movie, it made me think of the (very fitting) Hugh Grant classic “Music & Lyrics.”
It particularly made me think of an argument between Sophie (Drew Barrymore) and Alex (Hugh) about the importance of melody versus lyrics. Sophie says that “a melody is like seeing someone for the first time – the physical attraction… But then, as you get to know the person, that’s the lyrics – their story, who they are underneath. It’s the combination of the two that makes it magical.”
Now if you didn’t think I could find some great brilliant wisdom to live by in a Hugh Grant movie, you clearly don’t know me very well. I think that line does a fantastic job of summing up the importance of melody and lyrics.
“Is there more I could have said? Now they’re only pictures in my head”*
Tonight I spent some time looking through old photos from high school and college. To be honest, I glanced through most without even stopping to take a closer look. But even with those quick glances memories flooded my head, some sad but most really happy.
As I’m sure anyone else would in the same situation, I immediately thought of the Muppets. More specifically, I thought of Kermit’s song “Pictures in My Head” from the newest movie (which I can’t wait to buy and watch again…). Kermit had various pictures of some of the most famous Muppets lining the walls of his home, and he looked at them to reminisce about the great times they shared so long ago.
All of this led to him asking the simple question of where it had all gone. He wonders what role he has played in the dissolution of these relationships, which has cast these experiences permanently into the past as mere memories. And he wonders if there was more he could have said.
It would be really easy to hear that and think about all of the ways I have not followed through on friendships over the years. After all, it takes two to be friends. Even if the other person did not put forth the effort to maintain the friendship, neither did I. But tonight I’m in a happy mood (it was a beautiful day today – nice enough for my first topless drive of 2012!), so I want to reflect on these memories from a more positive angle.
Some people are born with the gift of conciseness. These people boast the ability to sum up complex ideas in pithy statements of wisdom, which often become cliché over time as people continually use them since they are so true.
I am not one of these people. I am longwinded.
My stories can last for hours and my blog posts routinely fly past 1,000 words. Through all my journalism classes, the most common critique I received from professors focused on my wordiness.
Since I have been unable to find the happy medium of wisdom in few words, I tend to go to extremes. I will either allow thoughts to pour out of my mind and heart in full force, or I will clam up entirely and say little or nothing at all.
This has been a particular struggle for me as I strive to be more encouraging. My personality leans ever so slightly toward sarcasm (not that anyone has ever noticed, I’m sure), but the more I engage in God’s Word the more I realize that I need to be more encouraging.
We’ve been duped.
Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day, and with it come all the insecurities of the lie. For many it’s a day of misery and for many others it’s a day of unattainable expectations. All our lives we’re indoctrinated with an idea of romance that simply is not true.
You see, so much of the problem can be summed up in the stereotypical Disney movie. I love Disney movies, but we watch them and witness people being swept off their feet, falling madly for the one they’re “meant to be with” even as they’ve never really known this person for more than a couple days in many circumstances. We hear about “true love,” but witness nothing that resembles TRUE love (as in, love in the real world), but we’re drawn in by the idea of happily ever after.
Our first mistake is that we limit romance to so much less than God intended it to be. Romance is not merely something that draws two people together in a torrid affair the way we imagine it to be, the way we’ve seen in so many movies or read about in books with Fabio on the cover. True Romance is the divine reaching out to us, nudging us toward what we are meant to become.
I am going to begin this with two confessions:
- Until tonight I had never seen “Sleepless in Seattle.” Apparently this is some sort of heresy considering that I have lived close to a quarter of a century and spent almost that entire time in the vicinity of Seattle.
- Tonight I was alone and had nothing to do, so I watched it for the first time.
Now that those are out of the way, I’m going to offer you a couple minutes to judge me based on either/both of those confessions. Feel free to take your time; I’ll be here when you’re ready to move on.