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Filled with venom

At dinner the other night, Jacques mentioned that he’d never seen “Singin’ in the Rain.” I was incredulous. Even people who hate musicals have *at least* seen that one! So, against my better judgement, I invited him to come with me to last night’s showing. What can I say, I was feeling magnanimous.

The first problem with Jacques is that he is chronically late. Not charmingly or fashionably late, just maddeningly, predictably, horribly late. The showing was at 9:30 and we stupidly agreed to meet in the line at 9. I figured it’s a popular movie, the theater is smallish and if there was a long line for “The Pyjama Game” then there would certainly be an even longer one for “Singin’ in the Rain.” So, at 9:15, there is no sign of him, and the line is starting to move, so I call his mobile and leave a voicemail that essentially says I’m getting my ticket and I’ll save you a seat. At 9:25 as I’m crossing the threshold of the theater, about to get to the ticket window, he calls me and says “I’ve just parked, where is the theater, blah blah blah.” So I tell him to run because I nearly have my ticket and long story short, I buy my ticket and go get a seat because I don’t see him.

Once I’m seated, I realize my mobile is vibrating; I check it and there are 3 calls from him. Fucking hell! So I call him from my seat (which I hatehatehate to do) and he’s all pissy. This is the second problem with Jacques. He gets all pouty when things don’t work out exactly as he thought they would. “I thought we were going to meet in line. I don’t understand, I woke up late, realized the time, blah blah blah.” Aargh! I don’t want a fucking whiny explanation when the movie is 1 minute away from starting, goddammit! And sidebar, there were 2 totally cute guys who sat down next to me, the air was all electric with potential conversation, one guy’s elbow kept touching mine on the armrest--of course, that’s the moment Jacques decides to make his appearance! Such a buzz kill.

The minute he sat down, I realized he wasn’t kidding about the waking up late. He looked like hell! And he smelled of whisky and cigarettes and unwashed sheets. I mean, ok, this is not a date, you’re just a friend, but for chrissakes, make an effort! Or just call and raincheck. I can take it. If that weren’t enough, he made little comments during the film that I frankly did not appreciate.

So the movie was delightful as always, and I cried as usual. I was impressed that the French audience managed a tiny bit of applause after Donald O’Connor’s scene-stealing “Make Them Laugh” number. It made me a little homesick for the Castro Theatre and its loving, cheering and nostalgia-crazed cinephiles.

This afternoon, Terence gets back from a design workshop in Poitiers, and I am hoping to wrangle him into seeing “An American in Paris.” He will appreciate the film’s qualities, I’m sure. Besides, Terence knows better than to make snide comments about something I have an unhealthy amount of adoration for. He is a straight guy who sings along to the West Side Story soundtrack! How great is that?

(More Jacques bile: did I mention that the other night at dinner, he had no money to pay his half of the bill? He made a slow-mo turn to get up and... do what? Ask if he could wash the dishes? Ask for a favor from the barman? Instead of inquiring what he intended to do once he was on his feet, in a blur of speed and efficiency I pulled out my Carte Bleue and just charged it. I fucking despise people who become loris-like in their movements when the bill comes.)

2:36 p.m. - 2001-08-05



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