Writing My Life

Now and Then


Julie, Julia, & Me

Julie Cooking

Julia Cooking

Last weekend G.E. and I watched Julie and Julia, and were surprised that it was as wonderful as everyone claimed – everyone except for some grumpy critic who thinks Nora Ephron “misses the mark” and should lace her sassy romantic comedies with commentaries about corporate America squashing small business America (You Got Mail) or how much work it is to accomplish something without a platform as in Julie VS Julia.

Nevertheless, I WAS surprised because often times I am disappointed in a “picture show” that receives rave reviews from MY movie-going friends. Yes,  I LOVED J&J, and my major ChickFlick critic even liked it! (He actually belly laughed at a couple of scenes I didn’t think were particularly funny!) 

Me, NOT Cooking

Continuing on. You know the old debate about art imitating life or life imitating art?Well,  there were a couple of lines in the movie that imitated comments I had uttered just hours before watching this Nora Ephron production. One statement centered on NOT finishing what is started. Of course, G.E. and I were not speaking of cooking or blogging. 

You see, for the past few days, I have tried to move my husband towards joining a gym with me, hoping that both of us would encourage the other to lose weight and get in shape. He soon asked if he could be honest with me, and I knew what was coming. He said something like “I am hesitant to join because you don’t always FINISH what you START.” 

After a few rounds of defensively listing my MANY completed goals, I admitted that losing weight and exercising were two areas I had failed OVER and OVER and OVER again. When we listened to Amy Adam’s Julie admit that she, too, was a GREAT starter but a MEDIOCRE finisher, G.E. and I launched into laughter. (Well, we thought it was funny.)

The second life-imitator, among several, was about blogging. When I first learned about this newest craze back in ’02, I thought it was insane! Who would ever want to read other people’s journals – besides snoopy mothers of bratty teen-age daughters? And why would anyone want to plaster their inner-most secrets thoughts all over the world-wide web. But here I am. 

The movie’s sainted husband (whats-his-name) makes an enlightening observation about this Internet phenomenon: blogging IS ego-centric. Writing about yourself and hoping people read your little vignettes plus comment does shout, “LOOK at ME, WORLD! Check out MY pictures! READ my WITTICISMS! WRITE to ME and tell ME how AMAZING and CREATIVE I am! How FUNNY and CLEVER my WRITING is!” (One of the first comments I received on my school-related blog was from ANNE RICE! I”m not kidding! It went to my head for awhile. I was running all over the district office like some kind of groupie showing off underwear I’d stolen from a rock star. Disgusting.)

Of course, there is always the fantasy that the Salt Lake Tribune will run a story about your WonderBlog and up your readership, and then an independent film company will contact you to see if they can put your story on the silver screen – Renae and Eliza: Modern Mormon Woman Writes to Brigham’s Wife. Or something inspiring like that.  

BUT after the 5th or 6th post and you realize how much work  this blogging is, how few people, including YOUR OWN CHILDREN, stumble upon your masterpiece, and how ordinary your blog really is. At this point, you either fade into Internet oblivion or learn how much you REALLY love writing and how you DON’T care who or how many read your prose (except for maybe your children). These are the survivors who keep posting regardless of their blogs’ UNpopularity because they enjoy it so dang much.