Let’s go to the movies!

My friends and I went to see The Odd Life of Timothy Green yesterday to celebrate the odd life of Tami, Jan and Laura.

We’ve been celebrating our odd lives by going to the movies for nearly four years. The decadence of the mid-day movie thrills me still, but the real appeal of our afternoon outings lies in the opportunity to hang out with my witty and wonderful friends.

A tragedy launched our movie club four years ago when a massive stroke robbed Jan of the ability to swallow. As she battled back, we began planning regular outings to the theater, where with a still shaky Jan we found equal footing in the cushy seats and the opportunity to spend several hours together without eating or drinking.

As Jan grew stronger and regained her swallow, Tami began to fight a series of cancers that culminated in a diagnosis of Lynch Syndrome, a genetic condition that greatly increases the risk of cancer. Through her treatments and recoveries, Tami remained cheerfully uncomplaining and unfailingly kind.

When I had unexpected surgery last year to remove a tumor that turned out to be benign we joked that no one would want to join our club.

But here’s the thing about my friends: They remain two of the funniest, liveliest women I know. On our first movie outing, Jan listed up to the ticket booth with a cane in her right hand and stitches on left eye. “Well, aren’t you going to give me some kind of a discount?” she jokingly asked the attendant.

We’ve seen all kinds of horrible movies and a few excellent ones as well. Letters to Juliet proved to be an unexpected treasure, while The Back-up Plan still ranks as the worst movie we have ever seen.

But we’ve learned that really bad movies seen with really good friends can make for the best entertainment.

Here we are in the theater for the Odd Life of Timothy Green. We had the whole theater to ourselves, a situation I obnoxiously tried to document with my cellphone camera. Eventually, I found a concession worker to snap this beauty, the best of an awful series of dark, dark photos. If you squint hard and lean close to the screen you can practically see us.
I knew I wouldn’t have many photos for this post so I snapped a shot of the movie poster. We all three gave it a thumbs up, one of us even cried.
I took this shot of Jan in the car on the way home from the movie. She’s worked hard to reclaim her balance and her ability to swallow but she’s had that big ole smile all along.
I stole this shot of Tami and her nephew because I think it captures her joie de vivre and because she hardly ever lets me take her picture.

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