Last Wednesday in the New York Times Magazine, Jacob Bernstein, son of Carl Bernstein, yes that Carl Bernstein, and Nora Ephron, wrote about his mother in her final years.
He wrote, "At 10 p.m. on a Friday night in a private room on the 14th Floor of NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital on 68th and York Avenue, my mother was lying in her bed hallucinating, in that dream space people go on their way to being gone....All her life, she subscribed to the belief that “everything is copy,” a phrase her mother, Phoebe, used to say. In fact, when Phoebe was on her deathbed, she told my mother, “Take notes.” She did. What both of them believed was that writing has the power to turn the bad things that happen to you into art."
The article was beautiful. He told the story of his mother, her life and her legacy. And he told the story of how she died, gracefully and on her own terms. [She even dictated who would speak at her funeral and how much time they would be given.]
The article, got me thinking about the many things that I learned from her work. Because yes, she did write, produce and even direct almost all of my favorite movies: When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle, You've Got Mail and Julie & Julia. There are so many great quotes I love and live by because of her. And so many great characters, too.
"You're going to have to try and find a way of not expressing every feeling that you have, every moment that you have them" - Sally Albright to Harry Burns, When Harry Met Sally
"When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible." - Harry Burns to Sally Albright, When Harry Met Sally
"Why are you getting so upset? This is not about you." - Harry Burns, When Harry Met Sally
"It's so nice when you can set with someone and not have to talk" - Harry Burns, When Harry Met Sally
"Destiny is something we've invented because we can't stand the fact that everything that happens in accidental" - Annie Reed, Sleepless in Seattle
"I'm gonna get out of bed every morning...breath in and out all day long. Then, after awhile I won't have to remind myself to get out of bed every morning and breath in and out...and then after awhile, I won't have to think about how I had it great and perfect for awhile." - Sam Baldwin to Dr. Marcia Fieldstone, Sleepless in Seattle
"It was a million tiny things that when you added them all up they meant we were supposed to be together, and I knew it. I knew it the very first time I touched her. It was like coming home, only to no home I'd ever known... t was like magic." - Sam Baldwin to Dr. Marcia Fieldstone, Sleepless in Seattle
"You don't want to be in love. You want to be in love in a movie" - Becky to Annie Reed, Sleepless in Seattle
"When you're attracted to someone, it just means that your subconscious is attracted to their subconscious. So what we think of as fate is just two neuroses knowing that they are a perfect match" - Dennis Reed to Annie Reed, Sleepless in Seattle
"The Godfather is the I-ching. The Godfather is the sum of all wisdom. The Godfather is the answer to any question. What should I pack for my summer vacation? 'Leave the gun, take the cannoli.' What day of the week is it? 'Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Wednesday.' - Joe Fox to ShopGirl, You've Got Mail
"Sometimes I wonder about my life. I lead a small life - well valuable, but small, and sometimes I wonder, do I do it because I like it or because I haven't been brave? So much of what I see reminds me of something I read in a book, when shouldn't it be the other way around? I don't really want an answer. I Just want to send this cosmic question into the void. So good night, dear void" - Kathleen Kelly to NY152, You've Got Mail
"The whole purpose of places like Starbucks is for people with no decision-making ability whatsoever to make six decisions just to buy one cup of coffee. Short, tall, light, dark, caf, decaf, low-fat, non-fat, etc. So people who don't know what the hell they're doing or who on earth they are can, for only $2.95, get not just a cup of coffee but an absolutely defining sense of self: Tall. Decaf. Cappuccino." - Joe Fox to ShopGirl, You've Got Mail
"People are always telling you that change is a good thing. But all they're really saying is that something you didn't want to happen at all... has happened." - Kathleen Kelly to NY152, You've Got Mail
"Don't you love New York in the fall? It makes me wanna buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address. On the other hand, this not knowing has its charms." - Joe Fox to ShopGirl, You've Got Mail
"When you read a book as a child, it becomes a part of your identity in a way that no other reading in your whole life does." - Kathleen Kelly, You've Got Mail
"The odd thing about this form of communication is that you're more likely to talk about nothing than something. But I just want to say that all this nothing has meant more to me than so many somethings." - Kathleen Kelly to NY152, You've Got Mail
"If no one's in the kitchen, who's to see?" - Julia Child, Julie & Julia
"You are the butter to my bread, the breath to my life" - Paul Child to Julia Child, Julie & Julia
"I could write a blog. I have thoughts." Julie Powell, Julie & Julia