Monthly Archives: October 2009

Go See “A Serious Man”

Saturday Paul and I went to Indianapolis to visit a man who had had his leg amputated, and since we were in the big city, we decided to go see a movie. We went to “A Serious Man” with absolutely no knowledge about it–had no idea who was in it, who directed it–we just wanted to see a movie and it looked like it was getting good reviews.

When it was over, my initial reaction was, “Wow, I do not understand this movie,” but it is one of those that makes you think and mull it over for days and days. “A Serious Man” takes on the very serious question of the human condition and a person’s relationship with God. But since it is a Coen brothers flick, it is also at times hilariously funny. It sent me back to the Old Testament to read the book of Job, and I think the movie makes more and more sense to me. It is brilliant, funny, tragic, and altogether wonderful.

Larry Samski becomes Everyman–a Jewish Everyman trying to see a rabbi so he can figure out why things are going so horribly wrong in his life and what he can do about it. The message on the goy’s teeth, the Grace Slick philosophy, the Bathsheba next door, and the uncle who has to keep draining his boils all blend together into a movie you will never forget. Go see it–and then let me know what you think.

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How’s that tasting for ya?

I have noticed a dark turn to my restaurant-going. In the past, a waiter might say something like, “Can I get you anything?” or “Is everything all right?” Lately the question has been, “How’s everything tasting?” or even the more horrible “Does everything taste wonderful?” This strikes me as being intensely personal (s/he is asking about my tastebuds!)–not to mention unhelpful.
How is one supposed to respond to “How’s that tasting for ya?”
1. It’s yummy.
2. It’s too salty.
3. The texture reminds me of sand and pinatas (an actual response to the same question when Greg was 9 and I wanted to know how he liked dinner–followed by “Please don’t ever make this again.”)
4. It has a subtle bouquet.
5. Don’t take my word for it–here have a little bite yourself!
Is there a way to thwart this trend? Probably not. In the meantime, it saves the waiters actually having to do anything for you–which they might have to do if they asked what you needed. In the future I am going to say, “I’m just curious–were you trained to ask that?” as my response. I’m heading toward curmudgeonhood at a rapid pace.