Still more lazy thoughts from this one…

TMT: First Date in the Empire of the Sun

This is the next entry in a Theatre… a Movie… and a Time, a series, one that was begun here. Timing is everything. Cliche, I know, but still true. I moved this one into place because tonight The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will honor Takuo “Tak” Miyagishi (one of the pioneers of the anamorphic lenses for widescreen cinema in use today). And for this celebration, the Academy will screen this, one of the first feature films to use the spherical lenses, in his honor.

“Amatus sum, amatus es, amatus est.”


National Theatre



January 9, 1988: Loaded word, ‘sometimes’. I met the significant other that would become my wife — and the mother of my children — years before we ever ‘dated’. It happens that way… sometimes. Things (or people) divert us from what, or those, we later find are so central to our lives. By good fortune, she and I owe it all to a photocopier machine at work. I’m talking about the ancient ones of a time the size of veritable mainframes.

We came face to face because there were so few then, and in the building where we worked. Call it Tech Kismet. Even so, it didn’t translate into us being with each other back then. That would come later, as she-whose-name-must-not-be-mentioned was still around. But when I had the epiphany, it shed new light to what (who) was already there. When I posted my musical valentine earlier this year, I alluded to this moment.

Despite the fact I had taken her to lunch months before this, we agreed that wasn’t exactly a date — first or otherwise. It came down to an early Saturday night in the new year that saw us make it official. She accepted my invitation to see Empire of the Sun together. Although, for my retarded realization of not first seeing her for who she was, I was not allowed (by said woman) to even pick up my future [insert: girlfriend, fiancée, or bride] from her place of residence for the first of our formal social engagements.

I’d have to meet the elusive one right outside of the National Theatre in Westwood Village for this ‘rendezvous’. Luckily for me, and I continually thank the stars, the series of dates had only begun. As much as I enjoyed Steven Spielberg’s film adaptation of  J.G. Ballard’s semi-autobiographical novel, and our talk about it over dinner afterword, it was she who had my clarity and focus. Not the movie.

“We were given: Two hands to hold. Two legs to walk. Two eyes to see. Two ears to listen. But why only one heart? Because the other was given to someone else. For us to find.”

The entire TMT series can be found here. If you’re interested how it’s put together, click here.

16 Responses to “TMT: First Date in the Empire of the Sun”

  1. the sci-fi fanatic

    Very nice. I saw that film for the very first time recently my friend. wow. A young Christian Bale. It’s a good film. It never quite matches the sweeping scope Spielberg intended on the level of his classics. But I did like it.

    Honestly, I enjoyed your story even more. Very nice my friend.
    best. sff


    • le0pard13

      Yeah, I think Empire of the Sun is one of Spielberg’s underrated pictures, and the young Bale is something in it. Thank you for the kind words, my friend.


  2. rtm

    Awww… gotta love a romantic man! Thanks for sharing this, Michael. Man, if only I remember what movie my hubby and I first saw together. We’ve been together for 17 years now since we started dating my 2nd year in college, but we used to go to the movies together even before we dated. Again, lovely story!


    • le0pard13

      It’s great that you share that, Ruth. Sounds like you two were friends before things got serious, just like us :-). Thanks so much, my friend.


  3. Rachel

    As we say in my household when feelings of goodness overwhelm us: HEART!

    The hubby and I saw THE TRANSPORTER when we were dating before he knew we were dating (long, silly story:) and we saw SPIDER-MAN whilst baking a cake as we decided we should go on our first OFFICIAL date. Thanks for helping all of us find our memories.


    • le0pard13

      Great saying! Gotta remember that one. Transporter and Spider-Man, huh? Ooh, good stories on your part. Thanks for the comment and memories, Rachel.



Are you talkin’ to me?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Basic HTML is allowed. Your email address will not be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS

%d bloggers like this: