House of Gucci

There is nothing like taking the afternoon off to spend at the movies with a girlfriend, a bit tub of popcorn, and Lady Gaga, Al Pacino, and Jared Leto. Wow. Great acting, great story, great everything. If Gaga isn’t best actress, and Leto isn’t best actor for the upcoming academy awards, I’ll be greatly surprised.

Acting is something not everyone is cut out for. Seriously. Especially for a movie, there needs to be a great story first. Those based on real life are favorites of mine. You can’t make that stuff up. But relatives of people told about could sue you. “Based on real events” gets you off the hook, I think.

But having people who can act the parts is important. Adam Driver, IMHO, was a milquetoast kind of character. I didn’t see him as a powerful force at all. Maybe he’s that good an actor, you know? I can’t say because I’ve not seen him in anything else. His wife pushed him to get involved, advised him on business decisions, and insisted on running the show. The driving force behind her ambition was greed. It’s the oldest story in the book, right?

You just can’t beat Al Pacino as family patriarch. He was in his element, as the aging, Italian businessman. He’s had a storied career as a method actor and is always good. His performance is great, as always, and I just wasn’t surprised by anything. He was typical Al Pacino. Always awesome.

Jared Leto? You just won’t believe him. He’s so unrecognizable. And the acting. Go enjoy the movie in a theater while you can. The pandemic may change the availability of theater viewing in the near future, so go while you can. It was perfectly safe. Go. You’ll come back refreshed for the experience. It’s great story telling.

The best part of the whole day? Spending time with my longtime friend Kris. She has been in my life since our junior year in high school. We have been friends for over 50 years, and kept in touch over the years. She and her husband Lenny invited us to the VFW in the first place, and the rest is history.

She lost Lenny in August. She is doing well, and I want to spend time with her much more than we have been. She doesn’t drive anymore, but that doesn’t matter since I do. I’m very aware we need to spend all the time in the world with each other because some day, we won’t be able to.

I’ve been so focused on writing I haven’t spent time with friends as I should. A NYT best seller wouldn’t be worth losing precious time with them while we still can. Sometimes we don’t get a choice in when those friendships end. A stroke or serious illness can happen at any age. We’re boomers, and you never know if you may have cognitive issues with age. This is not a doom and gloom attitude; it’s the reality of life in our late 60s and early 70s.

Think about who you can spend more time with during this season. It doesn’t have to be a family member. Friends need our presence this time of year, too. Don’t overlook people right in front of you! It will do you a lot of good, too. You can never regret presence instead of presents. It’s what the season of love is all about. It helps our worlds all become a better place.

Yes, some people with greed in their hearts and hate in their souls behave like the real-life characters in the House of Gucci. Some people live to bulldoze people out of their way, on the way to power and wealth. You can have it. Not my style at all. Remember who is with you during the tough times, the hard times, the times you want to give up. Those are your real friends.

This Christmas season, be a good friend. Start now. By 12/31/2021, it will be a habit, a big part of your life and character. See you tomorrow!

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