MOM (backseat, driver’s side): Well, that was fun, seeing the movie all together like we did.
GRANDMA (front passenger’s seat): Why didn’t we stay for the last part? She was just about to jump on that Arab.
DAD (seated in the way back, next to a partially deflated snow tube and an economy-size bag of dog food): It’s interesting. I found the ending to suggest a kind of eternal life for the protagonist. It’s very Kierkegaard in that idea of the immortality of the soul.
MOM: I don’t think he was really an Arab, Mother. Plus, it was obvious he was about to die. Who wants to see that? Right, Tyler?
ME (driver’s seat): …
DAD: Look, you can find threads of the Zoroastrian tradition, which dictates that on the fourth day before death our souls leave our bodies and the human form sits idle—a hollow shell. Randy the Ram, one could argue, was, for all intents and purposes, “dead” four days before he stepped into that ring, and what we saw was his defeated chrysalis in a type of metaphysical purgatory.
GRANDMA: Well, if she did die, it serves her right for that scene she caused at the deli. The nerve of that woman.
DAD: Can you guys hear me?
SISTER (backseat, middle): He sooo dies. It’s obvious. I’m sure Dad has some long-winded thing to say about it. I’m going to see what they say about it on metacritic.com. Oh my God! Liz just Facebooked me and she was in the same theater we were! Isn’t that weird? I’m so sure she’s going to pledge Kappa, right? She probably won’t even get into State. I so love her, but, yeah, uh, “hello,” total uggers. And she got like a 1080 on her SATs.
DAD: Hello? Is anybody listening to me?
MOM: Well, if he didn’t die, I hope they make part 2 where he and the My Cousin Vinny woman meet up in Haiti or some other warm and exotic place. I’ll bet she leaves him for a younger wrestler, though, like Stone Drunk Steve Austin. Is that his name, Tyler? I remember when you used to dress up like a little wrestler. You’d put these tights on and then you and your little friends would pretend to be Randy the Ram or whoever was big at the time. Remember, Tyler?
GRANDMA: That was back when we thought Tyler was gay.
SISTER: I think Marisa Tomei seems like somebody I could be friends with, you know? She’s totally chill, like Hank. He could totally be an actor. He and his friends are so funny. If you filmed them, it would be sooo much funnier than Saturday Night Live. Right, Hank?
HANK (backseat, passenger’s side): I know a dude that sells steroids at my school.
MOM: Anyway, Tyler, remember how you’d run around the yard jumping on your friends in those tights? It was the cutest thing, because your father was just certain that you were gay, and he thought he’d try to toughen you up by reading to you from Günter Bork’s Die großen Basketball Stars.
DAD: No, it was the Iliad!
MOM: You had a guinea pig named Ajax. Arthur, is that from the Iliad? You know, Ajax? Oh, he can’t hear all the way back there. But, let me tell you, that guinea pig would squeak to no end, and let’s just say I wasn’t devastated when its gall bladder popped. Didn’t somebody feed it a magical mushroom? No, that was later. That was the cat. Mickey Rourke was so much cuter in Diner and Cocoon and what’s that one I love?
GRANDMA: Police Academy.
MOM: Yes, that’s the one. So funny.
DAD: You’re talking about Steve Guttenberg! Rourke wasn’t in Police Academy.
MOM: What’s that, dear?
MOM: Say again?
MOM: Like the Bible? What’s he blabbing about? Anyway, Tyler, what did you think of the movie?
ME: Police Academy was a hoot.