Sunday, September 23, 2007
A couple of Sundays ago at the dinner table I made the unfortunate error of recommending and sharing detailed insights about my new fav movie, Babette’s Feast. Because of the mockery suffered at the hands of JLW and B Gomer, I am reluctant to ‘cast my pearls before swine’ as it were and share my intense love for this movie publicly in my blog, but my feelings are such that I can no longer remain silent. I must recommend it to you all, no matter the risk I take in experiencing further ridicule and taunting. What can I say, some people are nincompoops.
Anyway, this movie. I cannot say enough about it as it is meaningful on so many levels such as what it means to be an artist, making choices, etc and of course, through it all run strong, powerful references to Christ.
The Christology in this film is very hard to miss and I view the story as one mostly about grace. How hard it is for people to accept it, recognize it for just how wonderful it is, or even appreciate the fact that it is offered for free and yet cost the giver everything she/He had.
This movie is in Danish (with some French sprinkled in as Babette is afterall from France) with English subtitles. The performances are superb and give new meaning to the word acting. Did I mention I love, love this film?
And just so you don’t think I am just blowing ‘artsy fartsy’ smoke, it comes highly recommended from other church members as well.
Truman Madsen said:
We watched this film years ago in the presence of Elder Jeffrey R. Holland. He has written what for me is one of the clearest and most in-reaching talks ever given on the relationship of souls, symbols and sacraments. He helped me see this story as an elaborate metaphor of what the scriptures call the wedding supper ”or the marriage supper” of the Lamb. Jesus, does indeed, liken the kingdom of heaven to a wedding feast. He calls the church His bride. And when she is adorned as a bride, He, as the Bridegroom, will come in triumphal reunion. To this consummating feast the poor and the meek of the earth will be invited. It will be a feast of feasts.
You can read the rest of the talk at: http://ce.byu.edu/cw/womensconference/archive/1999/madsen_truman.htm
The story also illustrates in an unusually poignant way that lives can be transformed by sharing a meal.
Babette, once a renowned chef in Paris, fled to the Jutland coast in 1870 to escape the fighting in France. She served as chef and housekeeper for two sisters in a tiny fishing village whose inhabitants were members of a devout religious sect.
Each of the twelve who gathers for Babette’s feast is in some way troubled about choices they have made in the past: loves they have lost, roads they have not taken.
As one character puts it, We tremble before making our choice in life, and after having made it again tremble in fear of having chosen wrong.
Nevertheless, as Babette cooks and serves her feast, the food and wine become a means of grace to the troubled souls gathered around the table.
Each feels embraced by life and comforted by the company of friends.
Babette’s Feast is based on Isak Dinesen’s short story (which I found on the internet btw), which sums up the effect of the feast in this way:
Of what happened later in the evening nothing definite can here be stated. None of the guests later on had any clear remembrance of it. They only knew that the rooms had been filled with a heavenly light, as if a number of small halos had blended into one glorious radiance. Taciturn old people received the gift of tongues; ears that for years had been almost deaf were opened to it. Time itself had merged into eternity. Long after midnight the windows of the house shone like gold, and golden song flowed out into the winter air.
Every time I watch this film I weep. It inspires me, on so many levels. I would love it if at my table those who supped there found strength and warmth even if all we are having is Sloppy Joes. Good things can happen to families and individuals who make time for rituals that attend to our need for nourishment. Maybe this is because what we find in our communion around a table is sustenance that nourishes not only our bodies, but our souls as well. Geez, I wanna be Babette when I grow up.
Yeah, okay. You get it. I really, really liked this film. I am certain that you will too, that is the non-nincompoops will. It ‘s a BM club choice.
See it. I can think of very few films that are more spiritual in depth and scope.
Monday, September 17, 2007
I've been thinking about dumb party games. You know the ones. They are on my mind as we have a Society of Relief Board Social coming up. And it would be nice if said Social could be fun but not too lame. Tall order, I know.
In Young Women, I had this down. We played great games. Stuff like Human Lemonade, Spam Carving, Cheeto Head and Peanut butter Baseball. Great fun. Messy and gross, but it kept things lively. Somehow I can’t see our Society Sisters gettin’ into Pantyhose Golf either. Sigh. You see my dilemma.
I am stuck with boring games. Remember the one called “I Have Never” where you say something you have never done before and then everyone runs around and scrambles to find a seat if they have done it. Is that just not soooo fun? Whew Whee.
Just thinking about all that party game hilarity makes me want to play a game right now. Because there’s no more ice cream in the freezer and I’m excessively bored, er, distracted.
So. Game on. I’m calling it Blog tag and it goes like this: I name 5 unknown facts about me ( so fun and fascinating, I know) and then I run around cyberspace chasing all my fam and then when I catch you, I reach out and touch, say, Devry or Wendy or Brig, etc. And then I grab you by the shirt and squeal excitedly, ‘Tag, YOU’RE IT’.
Is that not just the funnest? Then on your blog, you have to name 5 unknown facts about yourself. You know give us all the goods. Because revealing is so much fun. And you all suffer from A.S.S, so if it’s about you, then you are VERY interested. Yup.
Here goes. Heretofore unknown stuff about me, cs:
1. My name is biblical. (See page 1380 in Holy Bible) It’s even spelled authentically.
2. I drank coffee once. In the motel room we stayed in for HB’s college graduation. I went into the bathroom, locked the door and mixed me up some brew from the coffee machine sitting on the counter. I spewed it out fast as my Mom could sniff me out and that is the only time I have ever broken the W.O.W except, of course, the time I ate some candy cigarettes from SunGold Market.
3. My secret ambition/fantasy in life is/was to write the essays in the back of Time magazine.
4. I am one of .006 tenths of the world’s population who is able to discern a distinct flavor from ice. Really. And no, ld, it’s not the same gene involving asparagus. Don’t go there. Don’t.
5. I play the accordian. Not really play, mind you, but well enough for people to make fun of me. If I really like you, I whip it out on occasion. I can do a real inspiring and reverential version of ‘Sweet Hour of Prayer’ and a lilting ‘Pokey Polka’.
6. Oh, and one more. I forgot. I threw a pair of scissors at my teacher's rump in the 2nd grade. But with good reason, mind you. I had my hand raised and she was not coming fast enough. Mrs. Shelton I am so sorry. And I am sorry you had to tell my Mom. But in my defense I had not yet turned 8. I was an unbaptized, unaccountable brat. I would never throw scissors at anyone's rump now.
There. I am fdl (falling down laughing). What a game, eh?
And now. Run run run and pant pant pant...Ha, ha ha!
YOU’RE IT, Lindsay!
Sunday, September 2, 2007
Last summer when Brig first showed up around here I called him "Marty Poppins". Behind his back, of course. I called him this because like Mary Poppins he just came riding down the wind one day, plunked down on our doorstep and caused quite a stir, changing our family forever. And, just like Mary, who came and lightened and lifted and made lives better just by being her, Brig has been a breath of fresh air. He is quite possibly the most optimistic, gregarious and sincere disciple of Dale Carnegie on the planet. And if all this were not enough he is also a very good husband to Kenz. Good as in holding Kenzie's head and hair back while she pukes her guts out (so admirable considering seeing someone puke makes him want to puke.) I don't know why this should be so touching to me but it is.
But what's not so touching to me is being attacked by miniature marshmallows. What was I thinking in giving you a marshmallow launcher as a birthday gift? My bad. Very bad. Of course you would actually use it and of course you would find perverse enjoyment in shooting up your mother-in-law. Still, even as I am digging spent marshmallows out of the couch cushions and out of my hair and the one stuck to my leg, I am smiling. You can be so endearing.
For all your A.S.S. tough guy ways, I know the truth about you B.Gomer. You are an amazing and wonderful and super person and we love you. Dearly.
To be sure though, next year I will get you socks.