The Art of Racing in the Rain… movie review (warning: spoilers!)

Oh my goodness, this movie. If you haven’t seen it yet, please do. Especially if you’re a lover of dogs. I will warn you though, it’s one that will have you sniffling and wiping away tears more than once… unless you’re one of those cat people. Hee hee meow.

The Art of Racing in the Rain was a book before it was a movie, and one which I read a few years back. Sidenote: one of the best books I’ve ever read! So when my friend told me it was becoming a movie I had mixed feelings. Not because I wouldn’t want to see it, but the opposite! I knew I’d want to see it but wasn’t sure about going through the heart wrenching parts again.

The movie was in theaters, I didn’t go. Then it went to DVD, I didn’t buy. But then I mustered up some courage and brought home the DVD. Even then, it took me a few days to muster up more courage to watch the movie. I don’t know what it is, but any movie about a dog really gets to me. Short tangent: I still remember watching Benji as a young boy and being so affected by it. There was a scene where the family was moving away but just before they left the house for the last time, Benji escaped. They couldn’t find him so they got in the station wagon and were leaving for good. Then Benji returns home and is running behind their station wagon, like “Don’t forget me!” Whew, that was a memorable scene. Rant: Who moves away without their dog? That should be a crime! Maybe that family was more into cats. Hee hee meow.

I knew going into this movie I’d have to have my big boy pants on.

Well, I made it through pretty much OK! There was humor, drama, sadness, thrills, and love. The perfect recipe for a great movie… and great book, too. It had been a while since I read the book so I was happy to not remember every little detail, which helped make the movie “new” in a way.

There were 3 dogs that played the part of Enzo and I was so impressed with them. I watched the DVD extra about these dogs and it’s really impressive how well they were trained, and how the handlers worked with them to get the emotion and action they wanted for the film. Even while I was watching the movie, I thought many times, “Wow, the dog is showing such genuine emotion, this is great!” It never looked fake, ever.

I haven’t had any spoilers yet, but now I simply must share my favorite scene. Very near to the end of the movie, Denny (the main male character) is driving a vintage Ferrari with Enzo buckled in as the passenger. As wind blows through his ears and fur, Enzo is reflecting on his life with Denny and their family. His narration pauses, and Denny steers the car around the track, looks over to Enzo and says, “You’ve been a good friend. A real good friend.” Oh my goodness. Another cat slam: If that scene doesn’t cut right through your heart then you must be one of those cat lovers. Hee hee meow.

You definitely need to watch the movie, and snuggle up with your furry loved ones while you do. Ruff ruff!

-Out of the Wilderness

I bet it was satisfying for her

I’ve been spending quite a bit of time on the road and I always imagine I look like Jimmie Johnson out there. Great hair, perfect beard, manly, the envy of all my peers. The problem is I don’t drive anything like he does professionally. But sometimes, yes sometimes, I like to think I’d win a track race. Or heck, even just cruise ahead of the cars next to me on a regular road. It rarely happens because I don’t have a Subaru. Or a Porsche. Or a neat little Ferrari.

Today, I swear I came off the line first, but there was not much else I could do driving the ultra gas-friendly hatchback Nissan Versa. Take a look.

The driver next to me, while slower to put her foot on the gas, passed me with ease and soon enough she was rolling off into the sunset, with another trophy marking the implosion of my pride. Good for you, woman!

-Out of the Wilderness

Bad drivers and my dramatic experience with one

I came across another driver in Nashville that thought he owned the road. It wasn’t this guy, though:

 NERD ALERT: It was me! I’m actually pretty embarrassed by what I did. I’ve decided to punish myself by exposing my mistake to the world. I’ll explain more after you see the dash cam video, here:
 Explanation: When I’m driving, I can be a bit short-tempered. I don’t have a high tolerance for people who are indecisive, make the wrong decisions, or mess with my agenda in any way. It’s a fault, I know. I’m working on it, and that’s mostly why I decided to upload my embarrassing act on YouTube; to publicly shame myself. As you can see in the video, the lady in front of me needed to change lanes. I assumed she was about to miss a left turn and didn’t want to simply go down to the light and make her way back properly. So I let her have it, laying on the horn for nearly 5 full seconds!

Who does that?

Then, to ice the cake, I decided to pull out ahead of her. That’ll teach her a lesson! I did so, as you saw in the video, and very quickly realized the reason she was stopped: the third lane was being used as street parking! I was so embarrassed and full of shame. Instead of teaching her a lesson, I got schooled on being a jerk, judging too quickly, and acting like a real idiot. Ironically, the song playing on my stereo was GNR “Patience.” What scares me about this: I wasn’t even mad, so this must be habit. Ayiyiyiyiyiyiyiyi I need to change!

Whoever you were, lady driver on West End, I’m sorry. I was wrong and I know that.
-Out of the Wilderness

The Odd One Out

In a crowded room, do you ever feel like everyone knows something you don’t? When I go to Los Angeles, California that’s how I feel. Everyone’s trying to be somebody. Everyone wants everyone else to think they are somebody. If you don’t drive a Porsche or a Ferrari then you’re not quite successful. If you don’t have a view of the ocean or live in a gated community, then you’re not totally awesome. Status. If people see you in a nice car or owning a nice home overlooking Paradise Cove in Malibu, then you’re somebody.

Paradise Cove, Malibu, CA

Well, I know something they don’t; we don’t have to be ‘on’ all the time. Feel free to apply that to material possessions, career accomplishments, or personalities. It’s cool that you’re funny, but you don’t always have to be funny. It’s cool that you’re a serious person, but you don’t always have to be serious. If you’re an adventurous person, it’s ok if you’re boring sometimes. In the end, it won’t matter who you entertained and how much people liked you. It’s ok to be a boring person. If that’s what makes you truly feel alive, then be the best boring person you can be. There’s something refreshing about a confident person who knows when to be ‘on’ and when to lay low. When to tell a joke, and when to be silent. When to offer a hug, or threaten a punch. When to be the Porsche and when to be the Honda.