Before Sunset

October 21, 2008




Do you consider the book to be autobiographical?
Well, I mean, is anything autobiographical?
We all see the world through our own tiny keyhole, right?
I mean, I always think of Thomas Wolfe, you know,
if you ever seen that little one page note to reader
in the front of “Look Homeward, Angel”, you know what I’m talking about?
Anyway, he says that we are the sum of all the moments of our lives,
and that anybody who sits down to write
is gonna use the clay of their own mind,
that you can’t avoid that.
So when I look at my own life,
you know, I have to admit, right…that I’ve…
I’ve never been around a bunch of guns, or violence.
You know, not really.
No political intrigue or… helicopter crash, right?
But my life, from my own point of view, has been full of drama, right?
And, so, I thought that if I could write a book that…
…that could capture what it’s like to really meet somebody
I mean the most exciting thing that’s ever happened to me
is to really meet somebody,
make that connection, and if I could…
…make that valuable,
you know, to capture that,
that would be the attempt or…
Did I answer your question?
I’ll try to be more specific…
Were there ever a French young woman on the train you met,
and… spent an evening with?
See, to me, that…
that’s not important, you know?
So that’s a “yes”.
All right, since I’m in France
and this is last stop in my book tour,
“yes”.
Mr. Wallace,
the book ends on an ambiguous note.
We don’t know!
Do you think they get back together in six months,
like they promise each other?
Like they promised, uh…
I think I answered that. You know, it’s…
It’s a good test.
Right? If you’re a romantic or a cynic.
I mean, you think… you think they get back together,
you don’t, for sure,
and you hope they do, but, you know, you’re not sure
so you’re asking the question.
And… do you think they get back together?
I mean, did you, in real life?
Did I real…
Look, see, in the words of my grandfather, ok…
to answer that,
would take the piss out of the whole thing.
Oh, no…
We just have the time for one last question.
What is your next book?
I don’t know, man, I don’t know…
I’ve been…
I’ve been thinking about this…
Well, I always kind of wanted to write a book
that all took place within the space of a pop song,
you know, like 3 or 4 minutes long.
The story, the idea is that…
there’s this guy.
And…
he’s totally depressed!
I mean, his great dream was to be
a lover, an adventurer,
you know, riding motorcycles through South America,
and instead he’s sitting at a marble table,
eating lobster,
and he’s got a good job and a beautiful wife, right.
You know, everything that he needs.
But that doesn’t matter,
’cause what he wants is to fight for meaning.
You know, happiness is in the doing, not in the…
getting what you want.
So, he’s sitting there,
and just at a second,
his little five year old daughter
hops up on the table.
And he knows that she should get down
’cause she could get hurt,
but she’s dancing to this pop song,
in a summer dress.
And he looks down,
and all of a sudden, he is sixteen.
And… his high school sweetheart
is dropping him off, at home.
And they’ve just lost their virginity,
and she loves him,
and the same song is playing on the car radio,
and she climbs up and starts dancing on the roof of the car.
And now, now he’s worried about her!
And she is beautiful, with a…
a facial expression just like his daughters’.
In fact, you know, maybe that’s why he even likes her
You see, he knows he’s not remembering this dance,
he’s there.
He’s there in both moments simultaneously.
And just like for an instance,
all his life is just folding into itself Sunset
and it’s obvious to him that time is a lie…
that’s it’s all happening all the time
and inside every moment is another moment, all…
You know, happening simultaneously.
And, anyway, that’s kind of the idea… anyway
Well, our author has to be going to the airport soon,
so he’ll thank you all very much for coming here this afternoon.
And a special thanks to Mr. Wallace for being with us.
We hope to see you again here on your next book!
Merci a toutes et a tous qu’etre venus.
Comme vous voyez y a du champagne, y a des petites choses,
donc servez vous.
Thank you all.
How much longer before I have to go to the airport?
Oh, you should leave at 7:30.
7:30 at the very latest!
Ok
Hi
Hello
How are you?
Good, and you?
I’m good, yeah, I’m great, I’m…
Do you want…
maybe get a cup of coffee?
Didn’t you just say you have a plane to catch?
Uh, yeah…
but, I mean, I have a little time.
Okay
I’ll meat you outside, okay.
I’m just gonna go out, get a cup of coffee,
Did you sign all this?
Yeah, I sure did.
Well, get your driver Philippe’s card
so that you can call on the cell phone if you’re running late.
And we will put your bags in the car
so you are not late going to the airport.
Thanks for everything. Merci beaucoup.
Which one’s Philippe?
Philippe, passe lui ta carte pour qu’il le forme numero portable.
Merci.
I can’t believe you’re here!
Well, I live here in Paris.
Are you sure you don’t have to stay,
you’re not suppose to talk some more?
No, no, no, they sicken me,
I spent the night here last night.
Oh, you did?
Yeah, yeah, they’ve got a waft upstairs…
Anyway, how are you? This is so weird.
I’m fine, it’s…
It’s good to see you!
It’s good to see you.
So you wanna go to a cafe?
Uh, yeah…
Okay, there’s one a little further,
that I like.
I thought I was gonna totally loose it in there.
When I first saw you…
I mean, how did you even know I was going to be here?
Well, it’s my favorite bookstore in Paris. I…
You can sit down for hours and read…
I love it.
There’s flees, but, you know…
I know, I think a cat slept at my head last night.
So, I saw your picture on the calendar about a month ago,
and that you were going to be here.
It’s funny because I read an article on your book,
it sounded vaguely familiar…
Vaguely, yeah…
Yes.
But I didn’t put it all together until I saw your photo, so…
Did you have a chance to read it?
Yes, I…
I was really, really surprised as you can imagine, I mean…
I had to read it twice, actually.
Yeah?
Yeah.
Comme Si, Comme Ca?
No, I liked it!
It’s very romantic, and I usually don’t like that…
but it’s, it’s really well written.
It’s really well written,
no, I really… Congratulations!
Wait!
Before we go any anywhere, I have a…
I have to ask you…
Sure, what?
Did you show up in Vienna, that December?
Uh, did you?
No, I couldn’t, but…
Did you? I need to know, it’s important to me!
Why, if you didn’t?
Well, did you?
No.
Oh, thank God you didn’t!
Well, thank God you…
I mean, thank God I didn’t, and you didn’t!
I mean, one of us had shown alone…
and that would have sucked.
I know, I know, I was so concerned with that.
I always felt horrible about not being there, but I couldn’t!
You know, my grandma died a few days before,
and she was buried that day.
December 16th, that day!
She died, the one in Budapest?
Yes, you remember that?
Yeah, I remember everything.
Of course, it wasn’t in your book.
But anyway, I was about to fly to Vienna, you know,
And I… and we heard the news about her,
and of course I took her to the funeral with my parents.
Well, I’m sorry to hear that.
I know.
You weren’t there anyway…
Why?
Why weren’t you there?
I would have been there if I could have,
I made plans, and we…
You better have a good reason!
What?
Oh, no!
No, you were there, weren’t you?
Oh, no, that’s terrible!
I know I’m laughing, but I don’t mean it!
Did you hate me? You must stop hating me.
Have you been hating me all this time?
You have!
– No, no… – Yes, you have!
Oh, but you can’t hate me now, right?
– I mean, my grandma… – I don’t hate you, all right?
Come on, it’s no big deal, all right?
I flew all the way over there, you blew the thing off,
and then my life has been a big nose dive since then,
but it’s not a problem.
No, you can’t say that! No, I’m kidding, I’m kidding…
Oh, I can’t believe it, you must have been so angry with me…
I’m so sorry, I really wanted to be there,
more than anything in the world! I swear…
Honestly, I swear…
I mean, you can’t be angry… my grandmother…
No, I know, I know,
I honestly thought that something like that might have happened.
I was definitely bumped, but…
Mostly, I was jut mad we hadn’t exchanged any phone numbers
or any information.
I know, that was so stupid, no way to get in touch.
– I didn’t even know your last name – I know, I know…
I mean we were both afraid that if we started writing
and calling, that it would slowly…
you know, fade out.
– Yeah, it definitely wasn’t a slow fade. – No, it sure wasn’t.
I know, we wanted to pick it up were we left off.
– Which would have been fun if it worked… – Yes, a good idea…
Ahh,
so…
How long were you in Vienna, then?
Just a couple of days.
Did you meet another girl?
Aah, yeah. Her name was Gretchen, and she was amazing.
You did? Yeah, the book is really
a composite of the two of you.
Really? Oh, no… No, I’m kidding!
You wouldn’t believe it, I even went back to the train station.
I put up, you know, signs of my number, and the hotel,
in case you’ve been delayed. I was a total dork.
Let’s go this way. Did you get any calls?
Just a couple hookers, looking for a gig.
No, it was awful. What do you want me to say…
Oh, it’s so sad. I’m so sorry!
I walked around for a couple of days. Eventually, I flew home,
I owed my dad 2000 bucks,
who had warned me about French chicks, I have to say.
What did he tell you about French women?
Nothing, the guy… he’s never met any French women.
He’s never been east of the Mississippi.
So why didn’t you put “Six months later, the French bitch didn’t have show up”
You know, like… But I did, I did.
– You did? – Yeah, no, I mean I made it more hopeful.
I wrote this whole fictional version in which you actually do show up.
– Oh, what happens? – Uhm…
What?
Uhm, we make love for about ten days straight, that’s one part of it.
Oh, that’s interesting. So, the French slut…
– Yeah – Ok, ok…
It’s just, then they, you know, they start to know each other better
and they realize that they don’t get along at all.
I like that. It’s more real.
Yeah, well, my editor didn’t think that way.
No, everyone wants to believe in love. It sells, right?
Yeah, exactly…
So things are going well for you, right?
I mean, your book is a best seller in the US…
– It’s a tiny best-seller. – Oh, come on…
All right, yeah, officially, yes,
but I mean all those people haven’t read Moby Dick,
you know, so why should they read my book?
I haven’t read Moby Dick, and I liked your book, so…
Nice
You know, I thought you idealized the night a bit.
Oh, come on, it’s officially fiction…
– I mean, I’m supposed to… – No, no, I know, I know.
I know, I thought…
You know, there were times when you made me a…
Huh, I mean her, right?
No, me… Ok, whatever!
Ah… a little bit neurotic!
You are a little bit like that, aren’t you?
– You think I’m neurotic? – No, no, no, come on, I’m kidding!
Where did I do that? I didn’t do that.
Maybe it’s just me You know…
Reading something knowing that the character in the story is based on you…
it’s both flattering and disturbing at the same time.
How is it disturbing?
I don’t know, just… being part of someone else’s memory.
Seeing myself Sunset through your eyes.
How long did it take you to write it?
Uhm, 3 or 4 years, on and off.
Wow, that’s a really long time to be writing about one night!
Yeah, I know, tell me about it.
I always assumed you had forgotten me.
No, I had a pretty clear picture of you in my mind.
I have to tell you something.
– I just… – What?
I wanted to talk to you for so long, you know, now that…
– Yeah, me too – …it’s just so real, you know,
I feel I can’t get anything out of my mouth.
I know, I know, how long do we have? 20 minutes and 30 seconds?
Let’s go! No, we got more than that.
I wanna know about you.
Tell what are you doing… you know, what are you up to?
Uhm, where to start… I work for Green Cross.
– It’s an environmental organization. – What are they all about?
Well, we basically work on different environment issues,
from clean water to disarmament of chemical weapons.
You know, international laws that deal with the environment.
And, and, what do you do for them? We’re going this way.
Uhm, different things.
Like last year, I was in India for quite a while,
working on a water treatment plant.
– Wow! – Well, yeah, the cotton industry there
is a major source of pollution, so…
I mean, this sounds like you’re actually doing something, you know,
I mean, most people, myself Sunset included, just…
sit around and bitch, you know,
America’s consuming all the world resources, SUVs suck, global warming is real…
You know, I’m really relieved you’re not one of those
Freedom Fries kind of Americans.
Hey, you know… But, how did you get into that?
Ah, I came out of political science
and I was hoping to work for the government.
And I did, for a while… eh, terrible!
– Not good? – Yeah, no.
Anyway, I got really tired… let’s go this way
… of having those endless conversations with friends
about how the world is falling to pieces.
So I decided what I really wanted to do
was to find things that could be fixed, and try to fix them, you know?
I always thought you’d be doing something cool like that.
– I did! – Thanks!
I just… no, really, really like you to be doing a job that I like.
You know, I actually alternated between thinking that…
You know, everything is irrevocably screwed up,
and that things might be getting better in some ways.
Better? How could you possibly say that?
Well, I just mean, you know… I mean, I know it sounds weird,
but there are things to be optimistic about.
Okay… I know the book you’re selling,
which is great, I’m very happy for you, but…
let me break the news for you, ok?
– The world is a mess right now! – I wasn’t saying that…
Ok, we’re moving all our industry to developing nations.
We can get cheap labor free of any environmental laws.
Ok, the weapon industry is booming,
Five million people die every year for preventable water disease.
So, how is the world getting any better?
I’m not getting angry, I’m not getting angry, but…
come on, I want to know, I’m interested!
Ok, I realize that there are a lot of serious problems in the world.
– Ok, thank you! – I mean, I don’t even have
one publisher in the whole Asian market.
Ok, all right. Say “stop it”!
What, what? “Stop”.
No, look, all I’m saying is that there’s more awareness out there, right?
People are going to fight back!
You know, I mean I think the world might be getting better
because people like you are educated into speaking out.
Even the very notion of conservation, environmental issues,
those weren’t even in the vocabulary until fairly recently,
and now they’re becoming a norm,
and eventually might be what’s expected all over the world!
I agree with what you’re saying,
but at the same time, it’s dangerous!
An imperialist country can use that kind of thinking
to justify the economy greed. You know, human rights…
A particular imperialistic country you have in mind there, Frenchy?
No, not really Bon soir!
Bon soir
So, you want to sit over there?
Yeah, this is perfect.
Oh, wow, maybe what I’m saying is the world might be evolving
the way a person evolves.
Right, I mean… me, for example Am I getting worse?
Am I improving? I don’t know!
When I was younger…
I was healthier, but I was racked with insecurity.
Now I’m older, my problems are deeper, but I’m… more equipped to handle them.
So, what are your problems?
Right now? I don’t have any.
I don’t. Just…
…damn happy to be here!
Me too.
So, how long have you been in Paris?
I got in last night. I’ve done 10 cities in 12 days,
I’m a wreck… I’m so glad it’s over.
I’m tired of being a hugster.
Ques-ce que je vous serve?
What do you want?
A cup of coffee…
Un cafe et un citrone, s’il vous plait
God, I love this cafe. I wish they had places like this in the US.
Yeah, I missed cafes when I was living over there.
I mean, I find a few places I really liked, but there was…
You… You were living in the US?
Yes, from… ’96 to ’99.
I was studying at NYU.
Oh, God, don’t tell me that, Celine!
– What? – No, it’s just…
– Nothing, I mean I… – What?
I’ve been living in New York since ’98.
You know, we were there at the same time!
– In New York? – Yeah…
Oh, that’s weird…
It actually crossed my mind a few times that I might run into you, but…
The odds are so slim, right? So…
I didn’t even know what city you were living in.
Weren’t you somewhere in Texas?
– You were in Texas… – Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Definitely, I just… I was for a long time, I just…
You know, wanted to try New York.
What brought you back here?
I had finished my masters, for one. And… no visa. No more visa.
And, anyway, I was starting to get paranoid.
All… the violence in the medias. Gang violence, murders…
Especially serial killers.
But, the final stroll was: One night I heard a…
some noise on my fire escape, so I called 911.
– And the cops came, eventually. – Yeah, like 3 hours later.
Yeah, after I had been raped and killed about 30 times.
No, but… It was a man and a woman officer,
and I was explaining to them what I had heard,
when the woman had to run downstairs to move the police car.
So, I was left alone with the male cop.
And right away, he asked me if I had a gun…
And I said no, of course not, I…
And he told me: “You better think about getting one.”
“This is America, not France”. Okay?
And I said to him, you know, I have no idea how to shoot a gun,
and, I have no interest in firearms, whatsoever.
And that’s when he pulled out his gun, like this…
and he went:
“On one day… you’re gonna have something like this in your face,
and if you wanna have a long life,
you’re gonna have to choose…
between you… alone.”
And they left… And the next morning I called
for an application to get a gun.
Me, with a gun! I mean, that’s really scary…
But then I realized something was wrong, the way that cop
had pulled out his gun out, and everything…
So I canceled my demand for the gun, and…
and I called the police station,
and tried to complain about that cop’s behavior, but…
– What happened with that? – It was so much paperwork…
and then I got scared, with my shity student desire.
– Yeah, you thought you’d get deported. – Yeah, exactly!
So I gave up and I forgot about the whole thing.
– Well, I guess I never forgotten. – Obviously… yeah.
But, still, you know… I really enjoyed being there.
There’s a lot of things I miss about the US
Yeah, like what?
Well…
The overall good mood people have there,
Like, you know, even if it can be bullshit sometimes.
Like “How you doin’?” “Great!” “How you doin’?” “Great!”
“Have a perfect day!”
I don’t know…
Parisians can be so grumpy, have you noticed?
No, everybody seems pretty happy to me.
– They’re not happy… – They’re not happy.
No, they are, I don’t know. Maybe I just meet French men…
They drive me nuts!
What is it? What about them?
Well, they’re very nice. They’re great, you know,
to be around, they love food, wine. They’re great cooks…
But, I don’t know, maybe I’ve had really bad luck with them.
Why? What do you mean?
Uhm, well…
– I guess they’re not as … – What?
What’s the word?
Uhm…
Horny?
– They’re not as horny… – Horny?
All right, well, listen to me on this one:
In that regard, I’m proud to be an American.
And you should be, in that regard only.
Merci.
Have you ever spent some time in Eastern Europe?
Eastern? No, no…
No?
I remember as a teenager I went to Warsaw,
when it was still a strict communist regime.
Which I don’t approve of at all.
Sure you don’t…
– No, I do… -No, I’m just kidding!
But, anyway, something about being there was very interesting, I found.
After a couple of weeks,
something changed in me.
The city was quite gloomy and gray…
but, after a while, my brain seemed clearer.
I was writing a lot more in my journal,
ideas I never thought of before.
Communist ideas?
– Listen, I’m not… – I’m sorry, I can’t…
Go on!
I’ll send you to a Gulag!
No… But, it took me a while to figure out why
it felt, you know, so different.
And then, one day, as I was walking through the Jewish cemetery,
I don’t know why, but it occurred to me there,
I realized that I had spent the last 2 weeks
away from most of my habits.
TV was in a language I didn’t understand,
So, all I’ve been doing was…
walk around, thinking right!
My brain felt like it was at rest, free from the consuming frenzy.
And I have to say, it was almost like a natural high.
I felt so peaceful inside,
no… strange urge to be somewhere else,
to shop…
Maybe it could have seemed like boredom at first,
but it quickly became very, very sore full.
It’s interesting, you know?
Can you believe that it was 9 years ago that we were walking around Vienna?
Nine years? No that’s impossible…
It was, it feels like two months ago to me,
but it was summer ’94.
Do I look any different?
I do?
I’d have to see you naked.
– What? – I’m sorry…
Your hair was different back then, it was like…
– What, it’s the same… – Take it down, let’s see!
– Down, it was down. – Yeah.
Ok.
Well, voila!
So?
Ok, come on, tell me.
Skinnier, I think, more thinner.
Did you think I was fat before?
No.
Yeah, you thought I was a fatty. No, you thought I was a fatty…
You wrote a book about a fat French girl!
– Oh, no. – Seriously, all right,
you look beautiful.
Do I look any different?
No.
No, no real… oh, actually, you have this line.
– I know. – Looks like a scar.
A scar? What, a gun shot wound?
No, no, no, I lied to you, I’m sorry.
I had this funny… well, horrible dream the other day.
I was having this awful nightmare, that I was 32,
and then I woke up, and I was 23!
So relieved…
And then I woke up for real, and I was 32.
– Scary! – It happens.
Yeah, time goes faster and faster.
Apparently, it’s because we don’t renew our synapses live to 20.
So, it’s pretty much downhill from then on.
I like getting older, you know, it feels…
I don’t know, it feels more immediate.
You know, like I can appreciate things more.
No, me too, actually. I really love it.
I was once a…
…a drummer in a band.
You were?
Yeah, we were pretty good, actually.
But the lead singer guy, he was just so obsessed
with us getting a record deal.
You know, it’s all we talked about, it was all we thought about,
getting bigger shows,
and everything was just… focus on the future, all the time!
And now, the…
… band doesn’t even exist anymore.
Right, I’m looking back at the… at the shows we did play,
even rehearsing, … it was so much fun!
Now I’d be able to enjoy every minute of it.
Can I have a trier?
Well, your book has been published, that’s…
that’s pretty big deal, and you’ve been all around Europe with it.
Are you enjoying every minute of it?
– Not really… – Not really?
Do you have another one of those?
Yes, of course.
Here.
In my field, I see these people… oh, sorry… coming to it with big
idealist visions of becoming the new leader that will create a better world.
They enjoy the goal, but not the process!
Right.
But the reality of it is that the true work of improving things
is in the little achievements of the day.
And that’s what you need to enjoy, just take my field.
What, what do you mean, exactly?
Well, for example, I was working for this organization that helped
villages in Mexico.
And their concerns was how to get the pencils
sent to the kid in these little country schools.
I was not about big revolutionary ideas,
it was about pencils!
I see the people that do the real work
and what’s really said, in a way, is that…
the people that are the most giving, hard working
and capable of making this world better,
usually don’t have the ego and ambition to be a leader.
They don’t see the interest in superficial rewards,
they don’t care if their name ever appear in the press,
they actually enjoy the process of helping others,
they’re in the moment!
Yeah, but that’s so hard!
You know, to be in the moment,
and I just feel like I’m…
designed to be slightly dissatisfied with everything…
You know, I mean, like… always trying to better my situation.
You know, I satisfy one desire, and it just…
agitates another, you know?
Then I think: to hell with everything, right?
I mean, desire is the fuel of life
I mean, do you think it’s true that if…
if we never wanted anything, we’d never be unhappy?
I don’t know…
Not wanting anything, isn’t that…
a symptom of depression?
Yeah, that is, right?
I mean, it’s healthy to desire, right?
Yeah…
I don’t know,
I mean, it’s what all those Buddhist guys say, right?
You know, liberate yourself Sunset from desire
and you’ll find that you already have everything you need.
Yeah, but I feel really alive when I want
something more than just basic survival needs.
I mean, wanting whether it’s… intimacy with another person,
or a new pair of shoes, is kind of beautiful…
I like that we have those ever-renewing desires.
Well, maybe it’s just a sense of entitlement.
You know, like whenever you feel like you
deserve that new pair of shoes, you know.
It’s ok to want things as long as you don’t get pissed off
if you don’t get them.
– Yeah. – Right, life’s hard.
It’s suppose to be.
If we didn’t suffer, we wouldn’t learn a thing, you know?
So, what? Are you a Buddhist or something?
No.
No? Why not?
I don’t know, I…
Same reason I don’t consider myself Sunset anything, really.
Yeah, I know. I decided a long time ago that
I was gonna to be open to everything,
but, not buy into any one-and-only belief system.
I went to this…
trapist monastery, a couple of years ago.
Trapist?
Yeah, they’re Catholics, Cistercians.
Why did you do that?
Why? I had just been doing some reading, I guess…
I don’t know, I thought it’d be cool.
Have you ever spent any time with any monks and nuns?
No…
It’s not really my style.
No?
I expected them to be all glowering and stern, but they weren’t…
they were really quick to laugh, really easy to be around.
Seriously, very attuned to everything.
They were just…
You know, they weren’t trying to hustle anybody.
They’re trying to live and die, in peace with God, you know,
or whatever part of them they feel is eternal.
It was just so refreshing to be around.
You know, you realize that most of the people that you meet
are trying to get somewhere better,
you know, they’re trying to make a little bit more cash,
trying to get a little more respect, have more people admire them, you know,
It’s just exhausting!
You know, it’s exhausting to be one of those people yourself Sunset.
I mean, there I… there I am, right,
you know, all greedy to be more spiritual,
you know, I wanna be a better person.
You can’t escape!
I had this…
this boyfriend of mine,
many years ago, that wanted to be a Buddhist, and…
so he went to Asia to visit some of this monasteries.
Yeah, I thought about doing that, too.
Yeah, you should. I’ll tell you why.
Aaa, he was quite good looking,
and, each time he went to one of those monasteries,
a monk offered to suck his cock.
True story…
Well, then, it all comes down to that, doesn’t it?
I mean, I think that’s why I really admire what you’re doing.
What do you mean, sucking cock?
Ah, no…
I was gonna say…
you know, you’re not detached… from life.
You know, you’re putting your passion into action.
Well…
I try.
You know something,
I’m…
I’m gonna be on planes, and like, an airport
for the next 8 hours.
I’d just love to…
to see a little bit more of Paris.
– Could we walk, right… – Yeah, yeah, let’s do that!
– Do you mind? – No, no, no, that’s great!
– Do you want to? – Yeah, yeah, that’s great!
What do we owe here?
4,50…
No, no, I got it, I got it.
Is this good for like a two?
Yeah, that’s fine! That’s more.
All right, is anywhere to go around here?
It’s sales day, today!
What’s that?
It’s when everything is on sale in Paris.
It’s twice a year.
Au revoir!
Au revoir, merci!
All right, let’s go shopping!
No, no, no, that’s a bad idea. I don’t want to inflict that on you.
It’s madness…
Let’s just go
to this garden path.
All right.
It’s really nice…
All right, that sounds better than shopping, actually…
I mean, not that I wouldn’t do whatever you wanted.
You know, sometimes I don’t even need to buy anything. I just…
get high on trying on and looking at things.
Yeah, well a therapist would tell you… Is this where we’re going?
– Yeah! – A therapist would tell you
it’s all good.
– Really? – Yeah.
– Are you ever in therapy? – Oh, no!
Do I seem like I’m in therapy?
I’m kidding…
Has it helped your sex problems?
My sex problems?
– No, I’m kidding… – Like what? Tell me the truth.
We didn’t have any problems that night.
No, I’m kidding!
We didn’t even have sex, anyway.
But, that’s a joke, right?
No, we didn’t!
I mean, that was the whole thing.
No, of course we did!
No, no, no, we didn’t.
You didn’t have a condom, and I never have sex without one.
Especially on a one night thing.
I mean, I’m extremely paranoid about my health.
– There’s no way I would have… – Whoa, I find this very scary
that you don’t remember what happened.
No, listen, ok…
I didn’t write an entire book,
but I kept a journal, ok?
And I wrote the whole night in it.
That’s what I mean, you idealizing the night!
All right, listen!
I even remember what brand of condom we used.
Okay, that’s disgusting. I don’t want to hear it!
It’s not disgusting…
Ok, you know what, when I get home,
I’ll check my journal from ’94, but I know I’m right!
– Wait a minute… – What?
Was it in a cemetery?
No…
No, we went to the cemetery in the afternoon,
it was in a park.
Very late at night.
In the park!
Wait a minute…
Okay…
Is it that forgettable?
I mean, you really don’t remember… in the park!
Okay, wait a minute.
I…
I think you might be right…
All right now, you’re messing with me, now.
Are you messing with me?
Ok, no, I’m sorry!
I think you… I mean, you’re right, okay?
Sometimes, I put things in drawers inside my head, and forget about it.
I guess it’s less painful to put certain things away than to live with it!
– I’m sorry! – It’s like that…
… that night was a sad memory for you?
No, I didn’t mean that night in particular…
I just meant certain things are better off forgotten.
I remember that night better than I do entire years.
Me too.
Really?
Well, I thought I did…
But, maybe I…
Maybe I put it away because of the fact that…
My grandmother’s funeral was the day
we were supposed to meet again.
It was a tough day for me, but must have been worse for you.
It was unreal.
I remember looking at a dead body in the coffin.
Her beautiful hands so warm, so sweet, that used to hold me, that…
Nothing in that coffin resembled what I remembered of her.
All the warmth was gone.
Then I was crying…
so confused if I was crying because I was never gonna see her again,
I’d never gonna see…
… you again.
I’m sorry.
I’m sorry to go on like this,
I’ve been a little down this week, I don’t know…
– Why?
I don’t know, nothing bad, just…
reading your book, maybe?
No, but…
thinking about how hopeful I was that summer and fall,
and since then it’s been kind of a…
I don’t know.
Memory is a wonderful thing, if you don’t have to…
deal with the past.
Memory is a wonderful thing, if you don’t have to deal with the past.
Can I put that on a bumper stick?
No, you know what? If you wrote a book about our life,
that would be a good title!
Yeah, it could be a totally different book.
Yeah, there’d be no sex nights.
But you know what?
What?
Now that we’ve met again,
we can change our memory of that December 16th.
It no longer has that sad ending of us never seeing each other again.
– Right? – Right.
I guess a memory is never finished.
So long as you’re alive…
Yeah, I know.
I have this memory from my childhood,
that, I realized recently, never happened!
What?
Well, when I was 8 or 9,
my mom was so paranoid when I was walking home,
from my piano lesson at night,
she would always warn me about dirty old men,
giving me candy,
and then showing me their penis…
She was so obsessed with it, that…
later in life, you know, I had…
I had this image in my head that that’s really happened!
To the point that I even associated sex with that walk home.
I mean, sometimes, even now,
when I’m…
when I’m having sex, I see myself Sunset walking down that street.
I swear!
It’s so weird, right?
Well, is that street near by?
I mean, could…
No…
Very far.
Did you ever keep a journal when you were a kid?
Uhm, yeah…
On and off, I guess.
It’s funny, I read a…
one of mine from ’83, the other day.
Yeah
And, what really surprised me, was that
I was feeling with life, the same way am now.
I was much hopeful and naive,
but the core,
and the way I was feeling things,
is exactly the same!
It made me realize I haven’t changed much at all.
Yeah, I don’t think anybody does,
and people don’t want to admit it, but it’s like we just…
we have this innate set points.
– Aha. – You know, it’s like…
nothing much that happens to us changes our disposition.
Really, you believe that?
I think so. I read this study where they followed people
who won the lottery, and people who had become paraplegic, right.
You’d think that…
you know, one extreme is gonna make you…
euphoric, and the other suicidal.
But the study shows that after about 6 months,
– Uhum – Right…
As soon as people got used to their new situation,
they were more or less the same.
– The same? – Well, yeah…
Like if they were basically an optimistic, jovial person,
they’re now an optimistic, jovial person, in a wheel chair.
If they’re a petty miserable asshole,
ok, they’re a petty miserable asshole with a new Cadillac, a house and a boat.
So, you now be forever depressed,
no matter what great things happen in my life?
Definitely!
– Great! – No, come on…
Are you depressed now?
No, no, I’m not depressed.
But, sometimes I worry that
I’ll get to the end of my life feeling I haven’t done all I’ve all I wanted to do.
Oh, what do you wanna do?
Oh, I want to paint more, I wanna…
play my guitar everyday,
I wanna learn Chinese,
I wanna write more songs…
There’re so many things I wanna do,
and end up doing not much.
All right, well, let me ask you this:
Do you believe in, like…
ghosts or spirits?
Uhm, no.
– No? – No.
Ok, what about reincarnation?
Not at all.
God?
No.
That sounds terrible.
No, no, no
But, at the same time
I don’t wanna be one of those people that don’t believe in any kind of magic.
So, then astrology.
– Yes, of course! – There we go!
I mean, that makes sense, right?
You’re a Scorpio, I’m a Sag, so we get along.
No, no.
There’s an Einstein quote I really, really like.
He said: “If you don’t believe in any kind of magic, or mystery,
basically, (you’re) as good as dead.”
Yeah, I like that.
I’ve always felt there was some kind of mystical chord in the Universe.
More recently, I started to think that…
that me… you know, my personality, whatever, that…
I don’t have any permanent place here.
You know, in Eternity, or whatever, you know.
And the more I think that, I can’t go through life
saying that this is no big deal, you know.
I mean, this is it!
This is actually happening.
What do you… think is interesting, what do you think is funny,
what do you think is important?
You know, every day is our last!
When I feel that way, I…
usually call my mom to tell her how much I love her.
Yeah
And she’s always: “Are you ok?”
“Do you have cancer?”
“Are you going to commit suicide?”
It’s almost not worth it.
So…
So, what about us?
What about us?
No, what I mean is, if we were both going to die, tonight…
What, like if the Apocalypse was coming?
No, no, that’s too dramatic.
But, what if…
you know, just the two of us were going to die.
I mean, would we talk about your book, the environment or…
If today was our last day?
Yeah, what would we talk about, what would you tell me, for example?
Well…
– That’s hard. – No, I’ll do it, I’ll do it.
I definitely…
would stop talking about my book.
I have to admit I would probably drop the environment.
But, I would still…
want to talk about,
you know, magic and the Universe.
I’d just wanna do it from a…
What?
… a hotel room.
You know, in between sessions of us…
… wildly… fucking, until we die.
Wow!
Well, why waste time with an hotel room?
Why not do it right there… on the bench?
– No… – Come here, come here…
Ok
We’re not gonna die tonight.
– Ok? – All right, too bad…
I’m sorry.
That was an extreme example.
– I’m sorry. – Ok.
What I… My point was, you know,
to truly communicate with people is very hard to do
I know, I mean most of our… most of our day to day exchanges
Yeah, I know, I mean…
not to bring everything back to sex
But, why not?
No, no, this example,
this friend of mine, she…
she was talking about she and her boyfriend, problems at bed…
Right…
… and how when, they had been dating for a year,
she started telling him what he could do to please her more.
And it totally freaked him out!
– Why? – Totally.
Well, he felt all threatened and he thought he was a bad lover.
Maybe she shouldn’t have waited so long.
– You know, after an year… – Well, yeah, but,
men are so easily offended!
Oh, what, more than women, you think?
– Oh, definitely on that subject! – You think so?
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Well, maybe it’s because, you know…
Men are…
easier to…
you know,
… to please.
– Well, I don’t know… – Yeah, they are, they definitely…
definitely.
Anyway, this friend of mine, she was telling me that,
next time she dates another man,
she’s gonna make a little questionnaire,
about what they like and dislike, for the event…
Like written down, or out loud?
Yeah, yeah, written down, mostly written down.
But it wouldn’t be just…
you know, yes or no,
it would be a little more complex than that.
Like for example, if the question is:
“Are you into S and M?”
The answer could be “No, but…”
“… a good spanking once in a while, doesn’t hurt.”
– Right? – Right. Or like:
“Do you like talking dirty in bed?”
That kind of thing?
Yeah, yeah, yeah, but not just like…
any dirty talk.
Just like: “What specific word would you like to hear?”
– You know, like… – What, me?
Well, yeah.
Like, for example, like what specific word would you like to hear?
I don’t know…
Uhm…
What do you feel about the word “Pussy”?
I… love it.
Good.
It’s amazing what…
perverts we’ve become in the past 9 years.
I know, I know.
Well, at least now we don’t have to pretend that
each new sexual experience is like a life altering event.
I know, by now, you know you’ve stuck it in so many places,
it’s like, about to fall off.
I mean, you know, I can’t realistically
expect you to have become anything but a total hole, at this point.
Yeah, thank you.
No, I’m sor…
That’s true, what can you do?
What can you do…
So…
What kind of songs do you write?
– I didn’t know you did that. – What kind?
– Yeah, sure. – I don’t know, just songs.
Like some are, you know, people,
Uhm, relationships… one’s about my cat!
Sing one!
– Just… – No, I can’t, I don’t have a guitar.
Come on, acapella.
No, no, no, I’m not singing a song without a guitar, you’re nuts!
Why not?
It’s…
Oh, ok, not now.
No.
If not now, when?
You want to meet here in six months, with a guitar?
You know, I’ll fly all they way over here, you may or may not make the metro…
Ok, that’s… that’s funny.
We’ve got to get going back to the bookstore!
You’ll miss your flight. Come on, let’s go!
– All right, all right. – We can walk down La Sennes.
It’s a nice thing.
So, you’re flying back to New York?
Yeah, yeah.
So I read in that article that you’re married, with a kid.
That’s great!
Yeah, he’s… he’s…
He’s 4.
Uhum, what’s his name?
Henry.
Little Hen,
he’s so much fun.
Oh, wow, I’m sure!
And, your wife, what does she do?
She teaches elementary school.
Do you have kids?
Yes, two.
Hih, shit!
– What? – I left them in the car!
With the windows up, it was 6 months ago…
No, I’m kidding…
No, but… I want to have kids someday, I’m just not ready, yet.
Yeah, I’m in a good relationship, though.
– Oh, yeah? That’s good. – Yeah.
What’s he do?
He’s a photo journalist,
he does war coverage.
He’s away a lot, which in a way is good for me, because I’m so busy…
Yeah, but isn’t it dangerous?
I mean, aren’t a lot of this guys getting killed this days?
He promises me he doesn’t take risks.
But I often worry,
he goes in this trance when he starts to photograph some things.
What do you mean?
Well, once we were in New Delhi
and we pass a bum, that was lying down the sidewalk,
– A bump? – A bum!
A homeless…
– A bum, all right.
Anyway, like,
he looked like he needed help,
but his first reaction was to photograph him!
He went, like, really close to his face,
fixing his collar, to make it look better.
He was like totally detached from the person.
Yeah, but you can act to be like that, to be good at that job.
Yeah, I mean, I’m not…
you know, I’m not… I’m not judging him for it,
you know, what he does is essential and incredible.
All I’m saying is that I could never do it.
Let’s get on that boat!
– Come on!
– No! – No, come on, it will be fun!
You don’t have time! We gotta go.
It’s just about to take off. Look, I’ve got… I’ve got…
15 more minutes… Do you have a cell phone?
– Yeah. – Look, I got that…
that driver guy’s number, and I can call him, and then they…
… pick us up at where ever they stop this.
– Ok, I’ve never been on this boats, it’s for tourists, it’s embarrassing!
Ok, all right.
Uhm, c’est bon? Pouvons-nous entrer?
– Deux tickettes, s’il vous plait! – No, I’ll get it, I’ll get it.
– Non, non, c’est bon! – All right, all right, all right.
C’est qu’il s’arette du prochain arette?
So, you’re in love with that guy?
What guy?
The… the war photographer.
Yes! Of course.
Merci.
I’m sorry, do you… do you have that cell phone?
Oh, yeah.
All right, what do I tell him?
Tell him to pick you up at “Quai Henry IV”
Oh, shit. At “Que…”
Henry quatre
Quai Henry IV
… HENRY QUATRE…
What’s wrong with you?
No, do you want me to…
Henry quatre.
Henry four?
Yes!
Come on, why didn’t you says so?
I’m sorry!
Yes, is this Philippe?
Yeah, Philippe, this is Jesse Wallace…
Yeah,
Listen, I’m…
I’m on one of those boats, right?
And we’re gonna arrive at…
at…
Henry Four… four, Henry Four, you know that is?
All right, gre… And you have my bags, right?
Yeah, so will be there in… I don’t know, it’s the next stop.
Ok, au revoir.
– Ok? – Yeah, yeah.
Oh, wow!
Notre Dame… check that out!
I heard this story once, about when the…
the Germans were occupying Paris and they had to retreat back,
they wired Notre Dame to blow.
But they had to…
they had to leave one guy in charge of hitting the switch.
And the guy, the soldier, he…
he couldn’t do it!
You know, he just sat there, knocked out
by how beautiful the place was.
And then, when the allied troops came in,
they found all the explosives just lying there…
and the switch unturned. And they found the same thing at…
Saicre Coeur…
Eiffel Tower…
a couple of other places, I think.
Is that true?
I don’t know…
I always liked that story, though.
Yeah, that’s a great story.
Did you have to think that Notre Dame will be gone one day…
There used to be another church or cathedral, at the same…
right there.
– What, right in the same spot? – Yeah.
Yeah, this is great, I’ve never done this!
I forget about how beautiful Paris was.
It’s not so bad being a tourist, you know.
Thank you for getting me on the boat.
Well, you’re welcome.
You know, I think that book that I wrote,
in a way, was like building something.
So that I wouldn’t forget the details of the time that we spent together.
You know, like just a reminder that…
that once we really did meet, you know, that this was real,
this happened.
And, how can you say that? Because…
I mean, I always feel like a freak because I’m never able to move on like…
…this! You know.
People just have an affaire, or even… entire relationships…
They break up and they forget!
They move on like they would have changed a brand of Cereals!
I feel I was never able to forget anyone I’ve been with.
Because each person have…
you know,
specific qualities.
You can never replace anyone.
What is lost is lost.
Each relationship, when it ends, really damages me.
I haven’t fully recovered.
That’s why I’m very careful with getting involved, because…
It hurts too much!
Even getting laid!
I actually don’t do that…
I will miss of the person the most mundane things.
Like I’m obsessed with little things.
Maybe I’m crazy, but…
When I was a little girl, my mom told me that I was always late to school.
One day she followed me to see why…
I was looking at chestnuts falling from the trees,
rolling on the sidewalk, or…
ants, crossing the road…
the way a leaf casts a shadow on a tree trunk…
Little things.
I think it’s the same with people.
I see in them little details, so specific to each other,
that move me, and that I miss, and…
will always miss.
You can never replace anyone,
because everyone is made of such beautiful specific details.
Like I remember the way…
your beard has a little bit of red in it.
And how the sun was making it glow that…
that morning, right before you left.
I remember that, and…
I missed it!
I’m really crazy, right?
All right, now I know for sure.
You wanna know why I wrote that stupid book?
Why?
So that you might come to a reading in Paris,
and I go walk up to you and ask:
“Where the fuck were you?”
No,
you think I’d be here today?
I’m serious, I think I…
I wrote it, in a way, to try to find you.
Ok, that’s…
I know that’s not true, but that’s sweet of you to say it.
I think it is true.
What do you think the chances were of us ever meeting again?
After that December, I’d say almost zero.
If we’re not real, anyway, right?
We’re just…
characters in that old lady’s dream.
She’s on her death bed, fantasizing about her youth…
So, of course we have to meet again!
Oh, God!
Why weren’t you there in Vienna?
I told you why!
Well, I know why, I just…
I wish you would’ve been!
Our lives might have been so much different!
You think so?
I actually do…
Maybe not, maybe we would have hated each other, eventually.
Oh, what, like we hate each other now?
No, maybe we’re…
we’re only good at…
brief encounters, walking around in European cities,
in one climate!
Oh, God, why didn’t we exchange phone numbers and stuff?
Why didn’t we do that?
Because we were young and stupid?
You think we still are?
I guess when you’re young… you just believe…
there’ll be many people with whom you’ll connect with.
Later in life you only realize it only happens a few times.
Yeah, you can screw it up!
You know, misconnect…
Well, the past is the past. It was meant to be that way.
Yeah, you really believe that?
That everything is faded?
Well,
you know, the world might be less free than you think.
Yeah?
Yeah, when given this exact circumstances, that’s that will happen every time.
Two part hydrogen, one part oxygen, you’ll get water every time.
No, no…
I mean, what if your grandmother had lived a week longer, you know?
Or passed away a week earlier,
days even, you know.
Things might have been different, I believe that!
– No, you can’t think like that. – I mean…
I know you shouldn’t on most things, but…
It’s just…
On this one, it seemed like something was off!
You know, I mean…
In the months leading up to my wedding, ok,
I was thinking about you, all the time.
I mean, even on my way there… I’m in the car,
and a buddy of mine is driving me downtown,
and I’m staring at the window…
and I think I see you.
Not far from the church, right.
Folding up an umbrella, and walking into a deli, on the corner of…
13th and Broadway.
And I thought I was going crazy, you know?
But now I think it probably was you…
I lived on 11th and Broadway.
You see.
So, what is it like to be married. You haven’t talked much about that.
I haven’t?
How weird?!
I don’t know, me met…
you know, when I was in college…
And…
we broke up and got back together, for a period of years,
and then…
What?…
We were sort of back together, and…
she was pregnant…
So, marriage.
Maybe she lied.
She’s a great teacher, a good mom…
Uhm, she’s smart…
pretty…
I remember thinking at the time, that…
so many of the men that I admire most, you know,
that their lives were…
were dedicated to something greater than themselves…
So, you got married because men you admire were married?
No, no, no, it…
It’s more like I have this…
this idea of my best self Sunset!
You know?
And I wanted to pursue that…
even if might have been overwriting my honor other self Sunset!
You know what I’m saying?
I mean, it’s funny like…
in the moment, I remember thinking that it didn’t much matter
the “Who?” of it all…
I mean, that nobody is gonna be everything to…
And that ultimately, it’s just a simple action of committing yourself Sunset,
you know, meeting your responsibilities that…
that matters.
I mean, what is love?
Right, if it’s not respect, trust, admiration? And I…
I felt all those things!
So, cut to the present tense, I feel like I’m running a small nursery
with somebody I…
used to date.
I mean,
I’m like a monk, you know.
I mean, I’ve had sex less than…
… 10 times in the last 4 years.
What?
What, what?
Are you laughing at me?
No
It sounds pathetic?
What monastery you know where monks have sex 10 times?
Ok, I’m doing better than most monks. All right?
But I do, I feel like if somebody were to touch me, you know,
I would dissolve into molecules.
Well, we’re here. We’ve gotta go.
Come on.
– Bon soir! – Bon soir!
I’m sorry, uhm…
to hear that…
– You know, that… – What?
you’re not that happy with your marriage.
Well, this friend of mine, she’s a shrink, and…
Yeah? How’s she doing?
She’s a mess, but…
No, she was telling me that she’s been dealing with a lot of couples
that are breaking up for the same exact reason.
Uhum, what reason is that?
Well, all this couples expected after a few years of living together
for the passion, that consuming desire, to be the same as in the beginning.
– It’s impossible! – No, I know, I know that…
I mean, God, otherwise we would end up with aneurism
if we were in that constant state of excitement, right?
We would end up doing nothing at all with our lives.
Do you think you would you would have finished your book, if…
if you were fucking somebody every 5 minutes?
I might have welcomed the challenge…
But, you know, it’s not true,
for your wife, after the birth of your son…
She has to give all her love to the little one!
Imagine that she was totally obsessed with sex, right?
And you like walk out…
That wouldn’t make any sense, right?
Everything you say makes sense!
It’s… it’s not about sex. I…
No, I know, it’s…
obvious.
I…
You know, couples are so confused lately.
I think it must be that…
men… need to feel essential, and they don’t anymore.
Because it’s been imprinted in their heads, for so many years,
that they had to be the provider…
Like, I…
I’m a strong independent woman in my professional life.
I don’t need a man to feed me, but I still need a man to love me,
and that I could love, you know.
So…
Your driver’s here.
Well, I guess this is goodbye, and…
– You’d better give me your… – No, no…
Why don’t we just give you a ride home, wherever you’re going.
Well, I can take the Metro…
No, no, no.
My flight it’s not until 10, right?
I think I’m arriving two hours early. This way we can keep talking.
Monsieur…
Ca vous arrive me deposer au passaje Dix Rue et Curie?
Oui, oui.
Allons-y!
No, no, ce n’est pas de probleme!
Vous pouvez me laissez au metro… au metro Chateau d’Eau.
– Ca ira tres bien. – Entendu!
Merci!
You told him where you are and all that?
Oui, oui, yeah.
– So, he knows where he’s going? – Yes.
Let’s hope he does.
Now, this is better than Metro, right?
Definitely!
I was thinking…
For me it’s better I don’t romanticize things as much anymore.
I was suffering so much all the time.
I still have lots of dreams, but they’re not in regard to my love life.
It doesn’t make me sad, it’s just the way it is.
Is that why you’re in a relationship with somebody who’s…
never around?
Yes, obviously, I can’t deal with the day to day life of a relationship.
Yeah, we have, you know,
this exciting time together and then he leaves and I miss him,
but at least I’m not dying inside.
When someone is always around me, I’m like suffocating!
No, wait, you just said that you need to love and be loved…
Yeah, but when I do, it quickly makes me nauseous!
It’s a disaster…
I mean, I’m really happy only when I’m on my own.
Even being alone…
it’s better than…
sitting next to a lover and feeling lonely.
It’s not so easy for me to be a romantic.
You start off that way, and,
after you’ve been screwed over a few times…
You… you forget about all your delusional ideas, and you
just take what comes into your life.
That’s not even true, I haven’t been…
screwed over, I’ve just had too many…
bla relationship. They weren’t mean, they cared for me, but…
they were no real… connection, or excitement.
At least, not from my side.
God, I’m sorry, is it…
Is it really that bad?
It’s not, right?
You know…
it’s not even that, I was…
I was fine.
Until I read your fucking book!
It stirred shit out from you,
It reminded me how… genuinely romantic I was,
how I had so much hope in things and…
now it’s like…
I don’t believe in anything that relates to love,
I don’t feel things for people anymore.
In a way…
I put all my romanticism into that one night
and I was never able to feel all this again.
Like…
somehow this night took things away from me and…
I expressed them to you and you took them with you!
It made me feel cold, like if love wasn’t for me!
I… I don’t believe that.
I don’t believe that.
You know what?
Reality and love are almost contradictory for me.
It’s funny…
Every single of my ex-es…
they’re now married!
Man go out with me,
we break up,
and then they get married!
And later they call me to thank me for teaching them what love is, and…
that I taught them to care and respect women!
I think I’m one of those guys.
You know, I want to kill them!
Why didn’t they ask me to marry them?
I would have said “No”, but at least they could have asked!!!
But it’s my fault, I know that it’s my fault, because…
I never felt it was the right man.
Never!
But what does it mean the right man? The love of your life?
The concept is absurd,
the idea that we can only be complete with another person is…
EVIL!
Right?
Can I talk?
You know, I guess I’ve been heart broken too many times.
And then I recovered.
So now, you know, form the starts, I make no effort.
– Because I know exactly what hap… – You can’t do that.
You can’t do that, you can’t live your life
trying to avoid pain, at the expense of en…
Ok, you know what? Loose our words!
I’ve gotta… I’ve gotta get away from you…
Stop the car, I want to get out!
No, no, no, don’t… don’t get out…
– You know, it’s being around you… – Keep talking…
Don’t touch me!
– You know, I wanna get on a cab… – Monsieur…
Monsieur, aretes vous!
Non, non, c’est bon, aux faux la!
No, no, no, don’t, keep going…
No, listen, I’m just so happy… thank you, just keep going…
All right.
Look, I’m just so happy, all right…
to be with you.
I am. I’m so glad you didn’t’ forget about me.
No, I didn’t…
and it pisses me off, ok?
You come here to Paris,
all romantic,
and married.
Ok?
Screw you!
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to get you, or anything.
I mean, all I need is married man!
There’s been so much water under the bridge, it’s…
it’s not even about you anymore, it’s about that time, that moment in time,
that is forever gone, I don’t know!
You… you say all that, but you didn’t even remember having sex.
So…
Of course I remember it…
You did?
Yes!
Women pretend things like that.
They do?
Yeah, what was I supposed to say? That I remember the wine in the park, and…
us looking about the stars fading away as the sun came up!
We had sex twice, you idiot!
All right, you know what?
I’m just…
happy to see you, even if… you’ve become an angry, maniac depressive activist.
I still like you, I still enjoy being around you!
And I feel the same.
I’m… I’m sorry, I don’t know what happened.
I just…
– I had to let it all out. I… – Don’t worry about it.
I’m so miserable in my love life, in my relationship, I always act as…
Like…
you know, I’m detached, but I’m…
I’m dying inside.
I’m dying because I’m so numb,
I don’t feel pain, or excitement…
I’m not even bitter, I’m just…
You think you’re the one dying inside.
My life,
is twenty-for-seven…
MAD.
– I’m sorry… – No, no, no…
I mean, the only happiness I get is when I’m out with my son.
I’ve been to marriage counseling,
I’ve done things I never thought I would have to do,
I lit candles, bought self Sunset-help books, lingerie…
Did the candles help?
Hell, no!
All right, I’m in love with the way she needs to be loved, and…
I don’t even see a future for us.
But then I look at… at my little boy,
sitting at the table across from me,
and I think I would have suffered any torture
to be with him for all the minutes of his life.
You know, I don’t wanna miss out on one.
But then, then… there’s no joy,
or laughter, in my home.
You know, and I don’t want him growing up in that!
Oh, no laughter?
That’s terrible, my parents have been together for 35 years
and even when they have a bad fight, they end up laughing like crazy…
I just… I don’t wanna be one of those people who are…
getting divorced at 52, and falling down into tears,
admitting that they never really loved their spouse,
and they feel that their life has been…
sucked up into a vacuum cleaner!
You know, I want a great life.
I want her to have a great life.
She deserves that!
All right. But we’re just living in a pretense
of a marriage responsibility, and all this…
just…
ideas of how people are suppose to live.
Then I…
I have this dreams…
What dreams?
I have this dreams,
you know, that…
I’m standing on a platform,
and…
you keep going by on a train,
and…
you go by, and you go by, and you go by,
and I wake up with the fucking sweats, you know?
And then I have this other dream,
oh… where you’re…
pregnant, in bed, beside me, naked, and I want so badly to touch you,
but you tell me not to,
and then you look away.
And…
and I… I…
I touch you anyway,
right on your ankle, and your skin is so soft,
and I wake up in sobs, all right?
And my wife is sitting there, looking at me,
and I feel like I’m a million miles from her and I know that there’s something…
… wrong!
You know, that I ca…
that I can’t keep living like this, that there’s gotta be something more to love
than commitment…
But then I think that…
I might have given up…
on the whole idea of romantic love.
That I…
I might have put it to bed, that…
that day when you weren’t there.
You know, I think I might have done that.
Why are you telling me all this?
I’m sorry.
I don’t know, I’m… I… I should… I…
I shouldn’t have.
You know, it’s so weird…
people think they are the only one going through tough times.
I mean, when I read the article, I thought…
your life was perfect.
A wife, a kid, a published author!
Your personal life was more of a mess than mine…!
I’m sorry!
Well… I’m glad it’s…
good for something.
Oh, monsieur, c’est la!
Rentre dans la place la.
This is… this is… this is where you live?
Yeah.
So, you’re just relieved that I’m in even more deep shit than you are?
Yes.
You’ve made me feel better.
Oh, good, I’m glad…
No, I really wish you the best.
It’s not because I’m incapable of having a good relationship or a family
that I wish everyone to be doing like me.
I’m sure you may be a great mom someday!
Really, you think so?
Oh, yeah. A few anti-depressants… you know, you’ll do great!
Ok, say “Stop”!
Uhm, “Stop”!
Heey!
You’re ready?
So…
I will try something.
What?
Wanna see if you stay together or if you dissolve into molecules…
How am I doing?
Still here.
Good, I like being here.
Is this your apartment?
Oh, no, I live down there.
– Down there? – Yeah.
Uhm, monsieur…
I’m gonna walk her to her door.
Il va m’accompanier… a la porte.
This is incredible!
This is where you live?
Yeah.
How long have you been here?
Four years.
So tell me…
What?
Is it all true, about your dreams, or…
you just say that to hopefully get in my pants?
Oh, I just said that to get into your pants!
– I use that all the time… – Oh, ok.
Does it work?
Eh, you know… sometimes.
Here is my Che!
Oh, so cute…! Look at her.
You know what I love about this cat? It’s that…
every morning I bring him down to the courtyard…
And every single morning…
he looks at everything like it was the first time!
Every corner, every tree, every plant…
He smells everything with his little cute nose…
Uh, I love my kitty!
I love my kitty!
What’s his name?
Che.
Che?
Aham.
What?
Commie!
No, “Che” in Argentina means “Hey”!
Oh, baby!
Oh, yes, yes, yes.
We’re having a little party.
It’s so much fun!
Qu’est-ce que vous avez fait bon pour ce soir?
Un tabule!
Je vais descende in cinq minutes!
Salut!
Uhm…
Salut!
So…
C’est qui celui la? Il est minion!
– Il mange avec nous? – Non, il prend l’avion.
Pour-quo’il ne mange pas avec nous?
Il n’aime pas ton short!
Mais qu’es-ce qu’il a mon short?
You know what I’ve…
I was thinking, uhm…
Would you play me one of your songs?
– You’re gonna miss your flight! – I won’t, I won’t!
I will be sitting in the airport for over an hour, reading the newspaper.
Wishing you played me one of your songs.
– One song? – Yeah.
Ok, but quickly.
Ok.
God, I love this old staircases.
Hold this!
Hey there, buddy!
Che…
Would you like some tea?
Yeah, sure.
Is chamomile ok?
Yeah.
Great.
Merci!
Messy?
You think my apartment is messy?
No, no, no. Merci, merci… merci beaucoup.
Ah, “merci”.
I meant to tell you… Your French has improved a lot.
– Really? – Yeah!
Yeah, you’ve really mastered the language…
All right, all right.
What song are you gonna play me, huh?
Now, I…
I can’t. It’s too embarrassing. It’s been…
Wow!
No way, no way!
I came all the way up here, you cannot crap out of me now.
One song, anything will be great.
No, but listen, you’re gonna laugh at me…
– You think so? – Yes!
I doubt it.
Ok.
What do you want to hear?
I have a…
I have 3 songs in English.
One’s about my cat,
one’s about…
my ex-boyfriend,
well, ex-ex-boyfriend,
…tuoba eno s’ereht dna
well,
it’s just a…
little waltz.
A waltz? Yeah.
Put the waltz.
I haven’t played it in a while, you sure?
All right, the waltz.
“Let me sing you,
a waltz.
Out of nowhere,
out of my thoughts.
Let me sing you,
a waltz.
About this one night stand.
You
were
for me
that night,
everything I always dreamt of in life.
But now you’re gone.
You
are
far gone.
All the way to your
island of rain.
It was
for you
just a one night
thing.
But you were
much more to me,
just so you know.
I don’t care what they say
I know what you meant
for me
that day.
I
just wanted
another
try.
I just
wanted
another
night.
Even
if it
doesn’t seem
quite right.
You meant for me
much more
than anyone
I’ve met before.
One single night
with you, little…
Jesse…
is worth a thousand
with any-body.
I have no bitterness,
my sweet.
I’ll never forget
this one night
thing.
Even
tomorrow
in other
arms.
My heart
will stay yours until I
die.
Let me
sing you
a waltz.
Out of nowhere,
out of my blues.
Let me
sing you
a waltz.
About this
lovely
one night
stand.”
No! One more, one more.
– Please, please. – No! No, no, it was our deal.
One… one song!
No, no, no.
You can have your tea, and then…
All right, let me… Let me ask you one question.
Do you just… plug that name in for every guy that comes up here?
Oh, yes, of course!
What do you think, that I wrote this song about you?
Are you nuts?
Oh, is this you?
Little cross-eyed Celine?
Yes.
That’s funny…
Is that your grandmother?
Yeah.
Oh, wow.
You want some honey?
Yeah, sure.
Did you ever see Nina Simone in concert?
No, I never did…
Can’t believe she’s gone…!
I know, it’s so sad!
Thanks.
I saw her twice,
in concert.
She was so great!
That’s one of my favorite songs of hers.
“…I know where I’m going…
…No more doubt of fear…
…Found my way… click, click, click.”
She was so great!
She was so funny in concert!
She would…
she would be right in the middle of a song,
and then…
you know, stop, and…
and… and walk from the piano,
all the way to the edge of the stage.
Like, really slowly…
And she’d start talking to someone in the audience…
Oh, yeah, baby…
Oh, yeah…
Uhum…
I love you too…
And then she’d walk back,
took her time,
no hurry, you know.
She had that…
big… cute ass!
She would move… whuh!
And then she would…
go back to the piano, and play some more.
And then she would…
I don’t know, just…
start another song, in the middle of another, you know, like…
stop again…
Like…
“Oh, you…
can you move that thing?
Uhum.
Wow…
you’re cute!
Oh…
Oh, yeah! Uhum.
Maybe…
you are…
gonna – miss – that – plane!
I know…

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2 Responses to “Before Sunset”

  1. Vimal Says:

    i remember watching this movie
    it was quite a treat

    have u seen “waking life”

  2. scarletpoetions Says:

    hello vimal! nope not yet,. i’l look for a dvd then hopefully watch waking life… thanx


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