Monday, August 29, 2005

Conversations With My Mom: Toronto

Mom: So, tell me about the friends you'll be in Toronto with.
Me: Well, let's see. Doug is a graphic artist who works at Cal Tech and lives in Los Angeles; Darren is finishing up his PhD in English literature, and will be a lit prof soon — he lives in Knoxville, Tennessee; Rob, from San Francisco, is a computer whiz but I think he's going to be a full-time writer of fiction one day; and J. Robert is a film critic from Chicago. And if we're lucky, a friend from Brooklyn may fly in too.
Mom: And what about your friend who sent us the gift of those great Ozu movies that your dad and I have been watching?
Me: Acquarello — he lives in Washington DC, and is a space engineer at NASA. He won't be in Toronto though, he'll be in New York instead.
Mom: So, where will you stay?
Me: We'll all be together at the same hotel.
Mom: What will you eat? Are there Indian restaurants in Toronto?
Me: Yes, Mom, there are. And I like Western food a lot too, you know.
Mom: Try to be good, okay? [she means "no alcohol" — it's a Hindu thing]
Me: Okay, Mom. [shame on you, lying to your own mother]
Mom: How many movies will you watch?
Me: I'll probably see about thirty. Like three or four a day.
Mom: Won't that make your head spin?
Me: No, it's great fun, although it takes a day or two to get into the rhythm of the thing. It's actually such an intense jolt of movie-watching and socializing that the week after the festival is brutally depressive.
Mom: Will you get a chance to go to the jazz nightclubs like you usually do?
Me: No, but I'm excited for a rock concert we have tickets for.
Mom: Tell me, do they show any Indian movies at the festival?
Me: Very few. Perhaps a couple of high-profile Bollywood films but they don't usually interest me.
Mom: What about New Cinema movies?
Me: Alas, almost zero. No Mrinal Sen or Shyam Benegal or Mani Kaul or Aparna Sen. Which is a drag. But on the plus side, they screen something like 300 films, and I'll be lucky if I can squeeze in a tenth of those.
Mom: Well, don't watch too many movies. Your eyes'll go bad.
Me: Mom, we're not discussing that again.
Mom: Okay, but make sure you eat well in Toronto. You're a growing boy.
Me: Mom, I'm not a growing boy.
Mom: But you're skinny, you need to eat.
Me: Mom, I just remembered something. I gotta go.
Mom: Yes, that's what you always say.
Me: Do I?


Blogger Doug said...

Funny and touching as usual, Girish. I can't wait for TIFF!

August 29, 2005 12:01 PM  
Anonymous Darren said...

"You're a growing boy." Ah, that's cute.

August 29, 2005 12:21 PM  
Anonymous acquarello said...

Hey, all I can say is, be grateful that your parents don't live near an old-fashioned style ice cream parlor like mine do. :)

August 30, 2005 4:30 AM  
Blogger Ed Garrity said...

This is your month!! Toronto Film Festival, your birthday, return to teaching with rave reviews, and of course, we're getting back to cool weather. Enjoy the TIFF! I want a full report of the best films and where I can get a hold of them ...

August 31, 2005 6:41 AM  
Blogger Jordan said...

Curious to hear about the Zizek doc.. have a blast.

August 31, 2005 11:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I m an outsider (not one of ur friends) but was just touched by the conversation and hence wanted to let you know that a stranger was here reading some of your blgs. I've been looking for some of the non commercial movies and I was wondering if you you help me find a good website where i can buy the DVD's. I see that you've been to some of these film festivals and surely you must know more than me. So what say you think you could help me. My email. just drop me any info on websites and that should do.


September 05, 2005 11:19 AM  
Anonymous Missy said...

I know what you mean about the post-fest blues. Seeing people you get to see maybe only once per year, being somewhat surprised by the energizing momentum to watch so many films. The last day and the days following I was a total grump.

Glad you had a good time.

September 22, 2005 7:32 PM  
Anonymous rakesh said...

God! I can relate to

October 13, 2005 10:46 AM  

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