Happiness is probably my favourite movie. Well it's up there at least, cause who am I to choose favourites? I prefer a grouping to a singularity. Regardless, for those of you who have not seen Happiness, you might well be thinking, sounds like a charming movie. Nothing wrong with happiness. For those of you who have seen the movie, you might well be thinking, what the fuck is wrong with her? And for the tiny few of you who get it. Get why Happiness is such a fantastic movie, this post is for you.
Over a year ago I posted about the breaker of my young heart. Astoundingly named Hart, which is why I mentioned it before. And his actual name is really that, and I wish I could change that I used it. I used it back when he was mostly imagined. He was constructed out of memories drugged with young person passion, so he was not so much a real thing as he was the perfect story. And I had to use his name, because it was such a perfect name.
I was sitting playing nerdy boardgames with my ex and kid. We have family board night in a kinda cool little cafe that has some superior coffee. I was distractedly looking at my phone while my kid was off playing with a friend. I saw an email came in. It was from Hart. The real one, not the imagined one. I was surprised as my heart actually skipped a beat. But I left it. To be read later, when kids are in bed and ex husbands are home.
He was feeling nostalgic. It made me smile that I was a source of this for him. When I wrote the post Superheros, I was in those feelings too. What I want to say here is not the details, but the feeling, the very strange sensation of walking slowing into your memories with a person you have not seen since those memories were made. I sent him to this blog, but to the front page, knowing Superheros was in there, buried and dripping with young girl angst. I thought, if he reads down far enough he will find it. I woke up the next morning with a message. He had.
We started going over memories and trading one liners and I caught myself flirting. With Solondz -esque compulsion I could not keep myself from talking to him. Here I was chatting with a memory.
Though bit by wit we started to catch glimpses of the older versions of ourselves. And with what I can only describe as discomfort, I began to yearn just slightly for the lost possibility. He did too, and upon his discovery of my love of the afore-mentioned movie, it came into sharp focus what he had lost. A girl who could see the humour in the pain.
I got him on okc. To get him laid, I guess. Who knows, he seemed to be in need of connection, and for me it's always been a good place for that. He lives a million miles away, so compulsive need to seduce aside, it was impractical. Plus it's funny. It's Happiness funny. It's bittersweet, sarcastic and darkly human funny. The kind of funny that not so much makes you laugh out loud, but rather makes you shake your head and shut your eyes. He showed me who his first date will be with, and she looks perfect. I don't mean, sparkly teeth, shiny hair and nails perfect, but smart and sassy and able to hold her own, perfect. She looked like a good fit.
When Hart first wrote to me, he wrote of compersion. It's the word poly people give to the feeling of happiness you feel when your partner is happy with someone else. You are happy for their happiness. It's a Solondz kind of happiness. One that hurts to feel. Happiness and irony and pain all in one. Hart later wrote that what we we doing felt like the opening of a movie, and maybe it is. Perhaps more in the middle or the end. But it has the elements.
It's not a Huges', boy meets girl/ boy loses girl/boy gets girl... it is more, boy meets girl/ girl loses boy/boy finds girl/girl gets boy to go online to find another girl/girl ends up back where she started. In there somewhere, the boy keeps losing the girl too. But it's whimsical and funny and smart and filled with nostalgia. It shows the reality of trajectories. How sometimes you just jump in at an opening and jump out again at another. I love Solondz Happiness, its hard to watch, but if you do, there is stuff in there that is beautiful.