Fake Orgasms, Big Band, and Nora Ephron

Fake Orgasms, Big Band, and Nora Ephron

As is often the case in life, I didn’t realize how much I loved Nora Ephron until she died.

Over the past month, I’ve committed the cardinal sin of blogging and took a vacation from writing (because I was moving from my third apartment in three years into a home).  On the first day of my adventure packing with a toddler, I tried writing between his naps and sips of wine but nothing that I attempted to write felt natural or of quality.

How NOT to get shot in Chicago during the summer…

Is Rahm Emanuel the “Grinch Who Stole the Taste of Chicago”…

Did Chicago sell the lakefront to Nike…

…These were all topics that I considered penning over my break.

But it wasn’t until last night, when I heard the news that acclaimed screenwriter, director, and author Nora Ephron passed that something felt organic because though we never met, I think that Nora was one of the few people on this Earth who really got me.

I was first introduced to her quasi-feminist brilliance in 1989 when at the age of 8 I saw “When Harry Met Sally” for the first time.   This movie, which is still one of my long-standing favorite films of all time, introduced me to Big Band music, romantic comedies, and fake orgasms.   Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, and Duke Ellington weren’t played much in my house growing up, but her movies planted the seeds of romance, jazz, and witty humor in ways that impacted who I was to become as an adult.

…It’s very clear.  Our love is here to stay.  Not for a year, but forever and a day….

Though Nora is best known for her romantic comedies, what I appreciate most is that even though her films centered around the perplexity of romantic relationships, the stories were never about damsels in distress, weak minded women, or female characters without depth.  In a day and age where images of women are far less substantive - focusing on breast size, weave lengths, and injections - her ability to tell whimsical stories without demeaning or minimizing the intellect of her heroines is now something that can be appreciated as a rare quality.

"And I feel bad for the people who don't at some point understand that there's something funny in even the worst things that can happen to you," - Nora Ephron

So on this day, one day after her passing, this little blogger wants to send good vibes and many blessings to Nora wherever she is because I am sure she is somewhere having a good laugh and listening to a good song.

…In time the Rockies may crumble,

Gibraltar may tumble,

There're only made of clay,

But our love is here to stay…

Rest in peace.

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    Kay S

    Kay Smith is a Chicago-based freelance writer and blogger who focuses on race, politics and urban culture. Having worked on public policy at the state, regional, city and community level, her opinions have been featured in the Chicago SunTimes and a host of news websites (under very mysterious sounding pseudonyms). Follow her on Twitter @kaywillsmith or contact her at kaywilliamsmith@gmail.com.

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