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    « Only The Good Die Young | Main | Clinterview: Man vs. Emotion (part 8) »

    True Love And Spinal Tap

           Attending summer school in July of 1984 at Villanova, my good buddy and roommate Billy suggested we go see a movie called This Is Spinal Tap, which was playing at a small independent theatre near South Street in Philadelphia. This was the hip, artsy section of the city. So one night we drove down in Billy’s big white Mercury Cougar and sat through what ended up being a watershed event of my life.
           The movie was a magic symphony that struck my entire being, like that one loud, powerful, note that shatters the glass. This Is Spinal Tap  sympathetically resonated with my very essence. That’s what great art does. Whether it’s a song, a movie, a painting, a book, or the love of your life who you want to share it all with. Your very self resonates with a beauty and a force that can not be contained. It’s magic.      
           I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve seen the movie since then. But I do know that, without exaggeration, I can quote virtually every line of the entire picture; and not only can I quote it, but I can duplicate the nuances, inflections, and timing of the lines as well. It’s more like, when I choose to, I can breathe the movie out of me. Because the movie is so completely in me. Like air.
           Last night, I saw the movie again, after having not seen it in years. And on the big screen to boot, which I hadn’t done since the summer of 1988 at The Kenmore Theater in Boston (that viewing is another story in itself). Last night in Coolidge Corner, I saw it with my twin brother and a bunch of his friends. Mike and I laughed so hard I thought one of us would pass out.
           How the hell can I laugh so hard at a movie that I’ve seen so many times that I don’t see anything new anymore? I know what’s coming. I know when it’s coming. I know how it’s coming. And yet I respond like it’s all happening for the first time. What would I call that? True Love.
           True Love, of anybody, or of any work of art, strikes you on a level that’s not completely perceptible or understandable. But only if you allow yourself to be struck that way. Some people never allow themselves to be struck like that, by anybody or by anything. Some people have great difficulty allowing themselves to be that vulnerable. Where they let their insides be so exposed as to be so touched by another or by art that they feel a vibration that shakes them to their core. It’s a scary thing. For all of us. But that vulnerability is essential if you want to be moved on this level.
           I’ve been all over the spectrum of vulnerability, from walled off shut down to raw nerves feeling every breeze of emotion. And I know I can help people open up, access their vulnerability, and thus allow themselves to be profoundly touched and moved.
           I don’t know if they’ll connect to “Spinal Tap”, but I know they can connect to themselves. To their feelings. To their life. And that’s magic.

    ©2013 Clint Piatelli, MuscleHeart, and Red F Publishing. All Rights Reserved.

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