The murder of actress Adrienne Shelley is just a sad story about how quickly life can change. Of course people get murdered in much more horrific ways (ex: Iraq) but sometimes stories come along that really punctuate how simple events can lead to extrodinary tragedy.
For those unaware of who Adrienne Shelley is, go rent yourself some of Hal Hartley's early films (Trust and Unbelievable Truth are highly recommended). She was a pixey of a woman who's acting chops contradicted her physical prescence.
She was murdered by a 19 year old construction worker last week because she had complained about the noise he was making in an apartment being renovated in her building. Apparently they had gotten into a fight, she slapped him, and he hit her and rendered her unconscious...it's not clear if he actually killed her at this point. To cover up what he had done, he dragged her back to her apartment, and strung her up on her bathroom shower rod with an old bed sheet to make it look like suicide. Sad Sad Sad.
Life changes quickly. One minute you're a successful independent film actress with a film about to come out, the next you're murdered by someone who isn't even half your age.
I can't help but think back to Malaysia. Had one thing gone differently in Malaysia I could have also been murdered. What if I had a panic attack and started freaking out? What if my bank account didn't have any money in it and they weren't satisfied with the loot they'd scored? So many what ifs? All of which mean nothing at this point. I'm alive. I'm back in NY. I've since hugged my mom and dad and had dinner with them on multiple occassions.
I saw Martin Scorses' film 'The Departed' a few weeks back. It was amusing. There is a scene very early in the film where two people are murdered by some thugs along a desolate lake. That shot, for whatever reason, just wigged me out. Possibly because in my minds eye that's pretty much how I imagined I was going to be murdered back in Malaysia. It was almost the exact set up that I imagined in my head. On my knees, hands tied behind my back, shot in the head, at point blank. Wiggy. Wiggy. Sometimes I still think about this image. Sometimes it still wigs me out. I should see a therapist.
What made me so lucky and Adrienne Shelley so unlucky?
Life can change quickly. Embrace what you have. Enjoy what you have. Tell people you love them. Life can change quickly.
Live with passion. Don't be afriad of failure. Nothing is failure except the missed opportunity to live. All those cheesy inspirational statements on greetings cards are true. Who would have thunk it? If you wanna run a marathon go and sign up for one and start training. Grad school...start studying, take your GREs and apply. Wanna take up photography...sign up for a class, buy yourself a camera, go and shoot lots of film. Wanna have a baby...well, that's more complicated depending if you're single or married...but consider your options and do what you have to do (freeze those eggs, visit a sperm bank, make lots of whoopy with your hubby or wifey). Be like Nike...Just do it.
Don't hold grudges. Arguments mean nothing. Tell someone you are sorry. It's okay to say sorry and that you've made a mistake.
When you think you're going to die, you don't think about the times you fought with someone, you'll only think about how much you wish you could hug them and kiss them and tell them you love them one more time. I can actually guarantee this first hand. All you want is one last moment.
Hugs, kisses, caresses...things we give so freely and casually. They mean the world.
Life is beautiful...it's all beautiful. Let's not forget that and let's not forget to share that.
Okay, soapboxing over...I'll step down now.