Saturday, January 28, 2006

'It's gonna be cold. It's gonna be grey. And it's gonna last for the rest of your life.'

Groundhog Day's next Thursday, and what better way to celebrate than to watch, as I did this evening, Groundhog Day, an underappreciated comedy that actually has a lot of philosophical ideas embedded in it. When offered a given set of recurring (and not 100% appealing) circumstances, how are we to react? Run amok, as "Phil" (Bill Murray, not the groundhog) does in the first part of the movie ... improve merely for personal gain, as he does in the middle ... or try to live as much for others as for ourselves, like he does on the final day of his test. I actually found myself tearing up first during the scene in the diner where he sits down with Andie MacDowell's character after doing a tour of all the customers' lives and then recites some of her childhood memories and persistent dreams. It was at that point, I guess, that the selfish funk I've been stewing in for part of today finally got thrown back in my face. It's easier said than done, of course, but what I've so often been told about cheering yourself up by trying to do for others really does make sense.

Today wasn't all that bad. Went jogging in Fort Tryon Park. Picked up some things at Target. Got new sneakers. Tidied the house. Went to church. Attempted to see the Adaptation-esque Tristram Shandy starring Steve Coogan (whom I've loved since 24 Hour Party People and snippets of Alan Partridge), but it was sold out (surprise, surprise—second day, Saturday night, Loews Lincoln Square). Poked around for a place to eat, finally settling on Pappardella. Then reveled in the greatness that is Bill Murray back at home.

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