Well, my family's embargo on the news is over: one of my immediate relatives has one of the worst forms of cancer. The aftermath of it all (my new phrase of 2014 is "receiving catastrophic care," yaaay) is horrible, but it's equally daunting to manage the daily grind of life - work, chores, friends, future plans - while trying to maintain oneself through it all.
It's less scary, in a way, because you join in the familial effort to "steer into the skid." But being a grown-up means not only accepting bad news and helping out instead of feeling self-pity, it means adding this new burden to all that you had going on before. It means not snapping at annoying co-workers, or being harsh with a roommate when they screw up. It means showing up to a party or a date in good spirits. It means not taking your personal pain and drama out on others, because that only makes things worse - and represents a failure to act like a proper adult.
And, fortunately, it's not too hard to maintain my perspective, because I've grown up in terrible neighborhoods, because of attempted muggings and beatdowns, because of managing the family medical business at 17 years old under great pressure - with a loaded gun under my desk. Big problems shouldn't overwhelm a proper adult - and, if you're like me, it means that you try to let hard times bring out what's truly best in yourself... Even if at the end of the day you find yourself having a drink or two to help decompress.
It gets hard, though, as the initial shock at the news fades into months of sleeping in spare hospital beds and scheduling visits. But, in times of crisis, I find it helps to turn to a doctor - and not just the ones I am related to.
I was so glad when I saw this picture of George Clooney from his early TV days. It was not just a nice reminder of how times have changed, but also it suddenly struck me that holy crap, George Clooney totally looks Indian in that picture!
Even better for my mood, Clooney's appearance reminds me of a figure from one of the funniest movie posts I have ever read. The link was sent to me by Nikhat, a wonderful woman who I adore and whose blog, Being Norma Jean, can often put mine to shame.
The post in question is a plot summary of Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham..., and you will laugh hard and often throughout the course of Imaan Sheikh's coverage. KKKG's story is so uniquely insane, and Sheikh's humor - both in text and through many cool gigs - is so infectious, that I now plan to see the picture as soon as possible. I didn't even get 70% of the Indian-specific jokes Imaan made (I like just learned what Diwali is), and yet I was wiping tears from my eyes. Fine writing and comedy truly do transcend cultural boundaries...
Even better, reading the movie's surprisingly-long wiki entry reveals that the crazy-ass movie has received a ton of critical analysis, bigtime box office success, and even awards.
Yes, multiple awards! For a movie that sounds like it was written on a fever dream and directed on a dare.
Hell, at this dark time, my sense of humor is working as hard as it can, and it really helps to be reminded of something that made me laugh so much. So I feel blessed that the old Clooney picture reminded me of the film, as I can put it into my DVD queue before I forget.
And who, then, does Clooney remind me of? An actor called Hrithik Roshan, whose role in this family drama is the once-chunky and now-hunky youngest brother Rohan. Sadly, his name does not mean that a Bollywood film managed to include the country full of horsemen from Tolkien's novels. Just take a look below, read that review I linked to, and make your owns plans to watch KKKG asap.