A place to indulge my narcissism... and write stuff...

Life Worth Living

After a trip to the big city two weeks ago, a Manhattan hangover still lingers. Following the remedy of “the hair of the dog that bit me,” I rented “Manhattan(1979).

The colorless imagery captures the glory of the city from countless perspectives: the art museums, restaurants, city streets, Central Park at night from a horse drawn carriage, and the magnificent skyline. The signature image is the bridge shot, a scene that captures moments of intimacy just before dawn. Dwarfing the cinematography is the script. Manhattan” was nominated for a best screenplay Oscar in 1980, and has one great Woody Allen one-liner after another. After he quits his job as a TV writer, Isaac (Woody Allen) describes his financial plight. One of my favorite lines occurs in a scene where Isaac and Mary (Diane Keaton) are strolling at night getting to know each other after an art opening. After Isaac tells Mary his ex-wife left him for another woman, she asks if he has any children.

Isaac – “Yeah, I have a kid. He’s being raised by two women.”
Mary – “Two mothers are absolutely fine.”
Isaac – “I always feel very few people survive one mother.”

Toward the end of the film, Isaac is laying on a couch dictating writing ideas…

“Why is life worth living? It’s a very good question. Um…Well, There are certain things I guess that make it worthwhile. uh…Like what… okay…um…For me, uh… ooh… I would say … what, Groucho Marx, to name one thing… uh…um… and Willie Mays… and um … the 2nd movement of the Jupiter Symphony … and um… Louis Armstrong, recording of Potato Head Blues … um … Swedish movies, naturally … Sentimental Education by Flaubert … uh… Marlon Brando, Frank Sinatra … um … those incredible Apples and Pears by Cezanne… uh…the crabs at Sam Wo’s… uh… Tracy‘s face …”

What makes your life worth living?


  1. Blogger User

    I suppose being able to get up each day, think clearly, walk normally and have all my facilities intact. We take that for granted.

    I also like monkeys.

  2. fifteenkey

    Don’t forget about Stewart’s Key Lime soda…

  3. Paul

    I love that scene in Manhattan. Here are a couple of mine:

    -Ellington’s 1930 “Mood Indigo”
    -The first 31 seconds of “I Want You Back,” and the last 43 seconds of “God Only Knows”
    -Half Dome in the late afternoon, as seen from Glacier Point

    Nice blog. I got here from RustedRobot.com…


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