Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Eat, Pray, Love

Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia

I loved this book. I know, me and 14 trillion other ladies. The movie is coming out soon. I'm anxious about it, I saw the trailer and - uh-boy. I don't remember a best friend that she confides in all the time from the book, do you? They invented a confiding best friend and that makes my heart sink.

A couple years ago around the time it was becoming the ginourmaous massive hit it was to become, one of my BF's and I  went to hear Elizabeth Gilbert speak.  She was on tour with Annie Lamott and I thought boy is that worth the 50 bucks or whatever it was - these were two amazing women breathing the same air. And this is BEFORE I read Operating Instructions, I thought I loved Annie Lamott from Bird by Bird but I had not idea that I loved her as deeply as it turns out I do.
But I digress.

Eat, Pray, Love. What an amazing journey. Such unbearably beautiful writing. I love her voice. I love her. I love her talent and guts and her unbearably beautiful writing. She is worthy of idolizing, and, clearly -  I do it.
I don't think Julia Roberts should've played her.

There, I said it.

I don't.
I'm sure no one had a choice in the matter. But, let me tell you who should have played Elizabeth Gilbert in this movie that is DOOMED to fail because holy crap we all love this book too much and there's no way, just no way that a 95 minute movie is going to take us on the ride it needs to to even for a second give us a glimpse of the page turning goodness.

So yes, here is who it is.
Kate Winslet.
Am I right? I'm so right.

Oh dammit, I just googled that combo and I see that I'm not the first to come up with this. I'm sure everyone else said the same thing. Julia Roberts? Really? No! It should be...Kate. or Laura Linney. That's a great idea too.

Anyway, the point of all of this is that I just finished re-reading EPL and it totally inspired me. Not to leave my husband and go on a soul searching journey, but to stay with my husband and tiny tot and go on a soul searching journey. I think I'd call my version Sweet, Play, Love.

God bless me and my cheesy ways but I need to make that my mantra. What else is there really? That little boy shows me these all the time. His sweetness overflows in the little fountain of joyful squeals, fast crawling toward our waiting arms, and in his sweet smelling hair. If I actually sit and play with him, we find each other. We bonded today over the moving of the big legos from this bin to the other spot.  He stared into my eyes and laughed at my random observations. He's like a little alien who doesn't speak the language but gets it more than anyone I've ever met. And love? As you know, it's all we need. My damn cute husband is a walking lovebomb - when I stop and focus there instead of 18 other places, I hear birds and notice good lighting. So - when I come back to those things,  along with the gratitude I have for the health we have, the love of friends and family, that hummingbird that was hanging around this afternoon -  I can't get all freaked out by the future and all the stuff I'm freaked out by.

Although, frankly,  I'm kinda freaked out.
The trouble with coming out of the movie coma I'm faced with reality and it's a bit daunting.

Towards the end of EPL she talks about this time that she went to an island alone for a week and sat in solitude and silence and faced down her fears. She literally sat still, watched the feelings come and go and then invited her fears, shame and hurt into her heart. I have never heard of anything so brave. I was so moved when I read this, it floored me. Again let me tell you - she sat STILL inside of squirmy awful feelings and let them move through her - and then she INVITED them into her heart. Who does that? Seriously? Rockstars. Not real ones, I use that as a complimentary term. She's my hero.

So there you go. A little sass and sap for you on a Tuesday night, as I continually try to talk myself down from the freak out and back to the SPL.

Your memoir writing mama wanna-be,

PS - Here's some eat play love - stop it with the cuteness, right?
The boys making the birthday cake for the belated birthday party.  Not sugar of course, sweetened with maple syrup...


  1. You might want to post the recipe here because a cake sweetened with maple syrup...yum!

    Also, when did you talk about the movie Babies? I'm sure this is where I heard of it first, right? I might get to watch it in Thursday!! I'm so excited!

  2. Oh, Sweet Jane. I'm so sorry. I have to disagree. Did we read the same book? I thought Ms. Gilbert's travel descriptions were beautiful, but to me, she came off as selfish, entitled, and holier-than-thou. She just isn't humble enough. And there was too much crying. She should have written this book as thinly veiled fiction.

    Kate Winslet is too deep for "Eat, Pray, Love". And she already did something kinda similar in "Hideous Kinky". I love Julia Roberts, but I agree she's not right for this part. It should have been Laura Linney!

  3. Juli beat me to it -- I loved Hideous Kinky. And I sorta fall in between the two of you on EPL. Sort of: amazing journey, beautifully told; heavy on the 'tude. It did make me wish I'd had the insight (not to mention the MONEY) to travel as she did when I was 30. Now, Julia Roberts comes across to me as totally selfish, entitled, and holier-than-thou, so maybe it will prove a good match after all?

  4. Fun a debate on the comment section! Keep it going. Who else hated it? Loved it?

    Juli - I cry alot so I related to her. I'm amazed that you got to selfish and entitled though - selfish why? Because she left her hubs? I'm so curious, I didn't think of that for one minute. And holier b/c she went and hung out with a guru? And met a dude who called her groceries? I love that detail. My friends know Richard from Texas who sadly died recently, I wish I could have met him. But, do tell!

    Robin - interesting point about Julia. Maybe since I want to Be EG I want to cast someone more likable as her - or in my mind - me. Hmmm.


  5. Yay, a debate! I emailed Jane, but I'll take a stab at a reply here too. I liked EPL, even though I didn't love it. Lots of good passages. I just wasn't totally sympathetic to Gilbert in the book, which is why I think she should have written it as fiction. Did NOT think she was selfish for leaving husband. Her journey was about her--OK, fine, great. But in the book, she seems kinda blind to her surroundings, eg abject poverty in India and Bail. Richard (sorry to hear he died) came off as too down-home for me. (Maybe I have a problem with Texas.) He reminded me of some guy I want to vote off Survivor. Hanging out with a guru is terrific. But you need to be humble when you describe your transcendental uh trips and not describe yourself a medicine man, or a goddess. Be a bit humble. Think Robin's right--Julia Roberts is perfect for this role after all. I'm probably just jealous, cuz no one has given me a $200K advance to travel the world and write my book. Sour grapes! xo's


    And then I started cyber-stalking Elizabeth Gilbert and saw all sorts of cool speeches she has made and I just LOVE HER. Did I mention I love her?

    I agree about Kate Winslet. But Laura Linney would have been good, too, because she is a terrific actress but not super well known to the masses, so people wouldn't come see the movie with pre-conceived notions like they do with Julia Roberts or Kate Winslet.

    And I would have done just about anything - and I do mean anything - to see Elizabeth Gilbert and Annie Lamott in one room. Whew.

    Sweet, Play, Love. That's PERFECT.