I will admit, I don’t normally do homages when celebrities pass away. However, the news of Nora Ephron’s passing did pull a few personal heart-strings, so here we go.
Of course, I knew of Nora Ephron from her famous, fabulous movies When Harry Met Sally (“I’ll have what SHE’S having!”), Sleepless in Seattle and more. But Nora caught me in a different way (and who would be surprised by this): her writing. When I moved away from home, literature became not just a passion, but a friend. Among those friends, was Nora (and yes, I will call her Nora because referring to her as “Ephron” makes her feel distant, and that was not the relationship that her writing and I had). One of the first people I met in Montreal was a girl named (funny enough) Chelsea. We bonded over our love of books and I had been tearing through novel after novel on my long friendless nights in my apartment. Chelsea brought me a copy of Nora’s I Feel Bad About My Neck, promising that regardless of the fact that the book was about ageing, I would have a good laugh. And laugh I did. And cry. I didn’t expect Nora’s work to be so, well, true. Her exploration of the female purse had me giggling to myself on public transportation, while her deep reflections on illness, death and dying had me crying as I walked into a nearby Starbucks (I kid you not, I remember this vividly because I was quite embarassed to be crying in public). When I handed the book back to Chelsea, I had this feeling, like.. this woman rocks.
I scribbled a quote from the book into a notebook that I still have to this day. I completely forgot about it until I saw a friend had “liked” it on Goodreads this evening. This woman had a way with words. And life. Thank you, Nora Ephron, for being one hell of a woman.
“Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to talk about later on. Reading is the unbelievably healthy way my attention deficity disorder medicates itself. Reading is escape, and the opposite of escape; it’s a way to make contact with reality after a day of making things up, and it’s a way of making contact with someone else’s imagination after a day that’s all too real. Reading is grist. Reading is bliss.”