I started a new book this week, “Love in the Time of Cholera.” Popular and well-known, it’s also “Now a Major Motion Picture!” I’ve just never read it and a general Pance rule-of-thumb is to always read before watching. Whilst waiting for the G train last night, an older gentleman, dressed in a skirt and knee-highs and a blazer decorated with numbers and letters (thinking the local Lion’s Club or some retired military outfit?) sat down next to me.
He commented, “Greeeat book.”
Pance, stating the visually obvious, “Yeah, I just started it.”
Lion Soldier, “Just don’t see the movie.”
Pance, “Well, that’s kinda why I’m reading it first.”
Lion Soldier, “Yeah, as my ex-wife says, ‘I read the movie.'”
I paused here, thinking that was a clever little statement, and was surprised I’ve never encountered it before. I didn’t respond, wanting to return to reading and to put a period on the awkward subway stranger banter. Then he starts digging in the pocket of his flashy blazer and pulls out a silver flask.
Lion Soldier, “Scotch?”
Success. Nothing says, “I don’t want to talk to you anymore” more than turning down an offer for free alcohol.