There is moment in the movie Sound of Music where Dame Commander Julie Andrews sings, arms outstretched, twirling around in a gorgeous field of flowers surrounded by cold, impressive mountains. The internet latched onto the scene and uses it to create memes (amusing item[s]…captioned picture or video or genre of items that is spread widely online especially through social media — Merriam Webster.) I do not know if Dame Andrews has seen any of these memes, but something tells me that a woman married to Blake Edwards would find them amusing at the very least.
I had that meme, captioned in bold white letters that said, “Look at all the Effs I do not give” in mind when I wrote my previous post. It was appropriate at the moment, and I’m sure it will be again every now and then. I didn’t include the meme hoping the words would get the message across. Isn’t everyone tired of blunt internet tools banging on our weary brains? Well some of us are anyway.
I think about Dame Andrews and the life she’s had so far: her tough childhood, iconic roles, the loss of her soulmate Blake Edwards, and the needless, criminal loss of her singing voice. There’s a woman who could spend a lot of time cursing the darkness. There was a pause in her creative life, but she never completely succumbed to all the effs she could not have given, a la the memes. She continues to sing, act, and she’s written piles of books (32) on her own and with her daughter. She continues to be a woman, mother, grandmother, actress, writer, and everyone who meets her says the same: she is as positive and wonderful in person as she is onscreen. Authentic through and through.
There is irony (and some humor) in using a happy woman singing a happy song in a meme that expresses displeasure at best, misanthrope worst. Neither of us knows what it feels like to be hanging on by a fingernail to life or sanity, but we’ve had our share of life things that we work through in equal and unequal measures, no matter where we are on the globe. She reminds me that the trick is knowing how to hold onto happiness, blessings, caring, giving — life — no matter how effed up things feel. So I take a spoonful of sugar to help the medicine go down, the stuff that reminds me it’s time to go back to giving a Royal Eff, to get focused and stay focused and not let the paltry shit get me down, to keep the pen moving and the love flowing no matter what the volcano is spewing. Isn’t that what winners, those persons who find happy moments and contentment in their lives no matter how small, wind up doing after all?