"If I'm going to sit down and eat with you, just tell me the truth."

May 30, 2010
New York Magazine published a fantastic interview with Joan Rivers (I'm pretty keen to see the new documentary about her.) It's so great when a comedienne is still fun to listen to when she's being earnest.

I liked a lot of what she said, especially her thoughts on friendship-- I agree that it's so important to really be able to talk to people about more than just the weather. Here, she describes what it was like to spend a lot of time with the high society crowd in New York:

"... It’s all very glamorous at the beginning. Going to the Metropolitan Opera, taking a table here, being on a committee there. Going out all the time all dressed up."

She levels me with a look. "And then I got bored to death. Nobody tells you the truth. I once asked one of the ladies, 'Did you ever have an affair?' And she stared at me like I was crazy. 'Why would I tell you?' she said. Another time, someone had just bought an apartment and I said, 'How much?' And she said, 'That is really none of your business.' And I thought, Fine. Then we are not friends and I don’t want to spend any more time with you. I was friendly with one couple who I no longer see at all. They would always say, 'We're such good friends.' And then I found out that their daughter had a complete nervous breakdown. For a year, I was always told everything is wonderful. Well, then what are we wasting our time here at [Upper East Side restaurants] Elaine's or Mortimer's or Swifty's? I don’t want to sit in Swifty's and not say anything about anything. I just totally stepped away.

... All I want you to do, if we are sitting down and it's after 6 p.m., is tell me the truth. Because we've all lied to each other all day long in business and we've all had these lunches and we've all ass-kissed to the point where I carry Chapstick. If I am going to sit down and eat with you, just tell me the truth and let me say to you, "Things are lousy and I’m sad.'"

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Bon Appétit

Aug. 10, 2009


On Sunday night, I was craving popcorn and passive entertainment, so I went on a little movie date to see Julie & Julia. Let me just say: I heartily recommend spending the $10 or so to go see this movie in a theater.

It's not that the film itself is so fantastic-- I mean, I liked it and it's cute, but it didn't alter my worldview or anything. It's that something happens about halfway through the movie that you'd just have to see for yourself to believe.  Get this: A very, very visible boom mic dips and lingers into the frame no fewer than three separate times within a couple of minutes. In a scene that includes Meryl Streep, no less!

I'm no A.O. Scott or anything, but even I can tell that that's pretty awesomely bad. I've heard phantom stories of boom mic appearances in, like, Star Trek Season 1 episodes from the 60's, but I'd never actually seen one for myself. And for it to make it into a modern, big budget movie's final cut is amazing. What's most remarkable to me is that I hadn't seen mention of it in any reviews-- how did that happen?

So please, do yourselves a favor and see it on the big screen for yourself, before it's airbrushed out of the DVD version.
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