the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

A New Hobby


A few weeks ago, Jenny wrote this on her blog;

So what do you do with yourself when you stop looking for love? I realized recently that I have spent so much time as a single person looking for love, that I’ll need to take a up a new hobby when I finally do find it.

Jenny, Jenny, Jenny, I laughed for ten minutes after reading that.  Don’t you realize the trouble hasn’t begun UNTIL you meet someone to love?   Your relationship will be your "hobby."

Most of us learn about love from books and movies.

In a movie, the story usually ends when the couple kisses at the altar.

In the real world, we each walk around with our own personal movie projecting in our head.  In each movie, we are our own star.  Most of the hard work in any relationship revolves around this problem.  How do you make sure that you are both in the same movie?  Are you equal co-stars?  Do you both have the same size trailer?

Like most bloggers and writers, I enjoy sitting down by myself and making things up.  I am usually my own main character.  In the movie in my mind, I am the hero — a little bit of James Stewart, Bruce Willis, Bill Murray, and Viggo Mortensen.   I make jokes, I flirt with women, I hang out with the guys, I save the day from the bad guys.

I thought I reached my final goal when I married Sophia.  Like Jenny, I figured there was nothing more to worry about.  I was the luckiest guy in the world.  I met Sophia —  someone so beautiful and fun.  Someone who actually agreed to marry a klutz like me!

But it took a while for me to realize that Sophia had her own movie in her head.  And she was the heroine in her movie — a little bit of Lucille Ball, Sophia Loren, Lauren Bacall, and Angelina Jolie. 

There is always trouble brewing when a couple is not in the same movie. 

At the top, is a photo from our wedding.  Can you tell who is the star of this movie?   The photographer surely did.  Every other photo has Sophia front and center, and all you see of me is my back and yarmulke.    Sophia and I always joked that if she ever remarried, she could just keep the same pictures and say this is her new husband.  And I won’t even mention the fact that I was propped up in front of a piano I can’t play at all.   Can you see some of the issues that we ended up having to deal with?

Here’s another photo from our wedding.  A beautiful, sexy woman.  A generic guy with a nice yarmulke.


So, Jenny, don’t worry about needing a new hobby after you fall in love.  Trust me — you’ll be busy enough.


  1. -RM

    This post was comical and twistedly romantic. Shit Neil, it was semi fuckin’ flattering. I can’t wait to hear about what Sophia thought of this one.

  2. Josia

    More incredible insight from you Neil …

  3. Spirit Of Owl

    I’ve hardly even been scripted in as an extra in my movie. I need to talk to the caster, the writer, and the director! Someone! Anyone!

  4. JJ

    In the movie in my head, I’m more like the hero’s chauffeur, like Kato for the Green Hornet but without all the Kung Fu fighting. Mostly it’s just opening doors and driving.

  5. MA

    I’ve not even come up with the plot of my movie yet.

    You two look like movie stars in your wedding photo. Well, Sophia does…maybe the photographer had a crush on her. She does look beautiful.

  6. kate

    This is a fabulous post Neil. You are so right about everything. I hope when I finally fall in love that we’re both starring in the same movie cause if he’s lying on a piano posing for the camera we’re going to have problems. LOL.

  7. akaky

    I think I was cut from my own movie.

  8. helen

    “There is always trouble brewing when a couple is not in the same movie.”

    Heck, what’s wrong with a little make-believe, a little imagination in our life. I believe that 2 person could be living it out on different movies but, if both are striving for the same ending, it might work out fine. lol

  9. Tim

    well, maybe your new movie could be Ray. I never saw it, but I think it’s about some guy who plays the piano, and gets tons of chicks and saves the day and kills terrorists. I think. Like I said, I never saw it.

  10. Pearl

    Beautiful photo…and for a time you did make beautiful music together, even if it ended up being for different movie soundtracks. (Was your movie a silent/romantic comedy, and hers a foreign/action adventure film?)

    I’m married almost 12 years — hubby and I luckily are in the same movie, but damn if we can ever *agree* on a movie!

  11. Megan

    Oh Neil, you and your words of wisdom.

    (Sophia, you look amazing in that photo, btw. Gorgeous.)

    When I first read that quote from Jenny, I assumed she was talking about giving up LOOKING for love and what do you then do. I want to know what happens in the movie if I never find my male protagonist. I better at least earn an Academy Award for my performance as the only lead actor in the film!

  12. Leesa

    Great post, Neil. My hubby and I sure walk around in different movies. But it works.
    The photo is beautiful and so is Sophia:)

  13. Lizzie

    So very true! And practical. When I get married I’m going to make sure that only one of our faces is visible in each picture. I’ll be able to save on the photographer for the second wedding. (Although I guess hubby #2 will have to look vaguely similar from behind.)

  14. tinapopo

    Maybe your movie is just one of those where the lead actor and actress part for a while, and the plot of the movie is how they realize they need each other more than they need their separate roles. Maybe? Or it could be like what Tim said, and you could find fame as a blind piano player addicted to heroine, but with lots of lady loves.

  15. mysterygirl!

    This was a great post, and then Kate’s comment almost made me fall out of my chair.

    One of the hardest parts of a relationship is trying to line up those inner-movies, making sure that at least a few plot points overlap… sorry you ended up being the Sam in this scene instead of Bogey… 🙂

  16. modigli

    I can see the cute, funny side of this post. And a little bit of the sadness, too, that the movie in your heads are not the same. Why can’t it be easier? That wedding picture is so sweet and promising. It looks like Sophia is the star, but if you notice, she is gazing adoringly at her husband, Neil.

    What if you were both like your own superheros? – sometimes SuperNeil is the star, and sometimes WonderSophia is the star! You each could have your solo movies when needed and then star together in the big huge summer blockbuster. … Hmmm… or is that already the definition of where you two are at? (seperated, but sometimes together.)

  17. Deb

    I think that two individuals who are joined together out of ~chemistry~ and love, should be different. They should be from two different ‘movies’. Why? Because it makes the relationship, or ‘the movie’ if you will, that much more interesting.

    My girlfriend and I have been together for eleven years. We are so different from one another. Our interests range from so many things. Makes for good conversations, and it also makes for some good experiences…trying new things and seeing a different world.

    If one is more of a ‘ham’ than another (which is me in the relationship)—–it can make for a good time, if you’re not intimidated by that sort of behavior. Being outgoing and flamboyant is great on Sophia’s part. That’s what makes her interesting probably.

    You sound like you have it good over there! 🙂 Best of luck to you!

  18. Leese

    You look like you were trying to push the piano away.

    Nice tux!

  19. 3rdtimesacharm( 3T )

    This was an intriguing analogy Neil. You just gave me a great discussion topic for the evening with the hubby.
    Don’t worry, I’ll give you credit. 😉

    Sophia is a very beautiful woman by the way. If Sophia is not to be your leading lady, I’ve no doubt you’ll find the right one for the new part.
    Loved this post.


  20. Jacynth

    What about the soundtrack to the movie in your head? That’s why I heart my ipod, always adds to the happiness or the drama of the scene that is unfolding (even if it’s just me on the bus).

  21. Angie

    Tonight I have a last drunk fest with a friend who is moving in with her fiance. She’s terrified (though she won’t admit it) and It’s my job to send her off with the worst fucking hangover known to man. Hopefully she doesn’t come out of it until like Wednesday.

  22. ms. sizzle

    that’s it! you have to both be in the SAME movie. i feel much better after this realization. thanks neil!

    and by the way, not that sophia doesn’t look stunning…your photographer is crap. i mean, what kind of photographer has the groom turn his back in the photo!? plus, you blend in to the piano so i missed you on first glance.

    😉 sizz

  23. Edgy Mama

    Astute and funny, as always. And freaking wise.

    Photo is brilliant. What a pose!

  24. communicatrix

    I will do your excellent analogy one better: not only do you have to be in the same movie, but each has to believe the other is the star of it.

    Lovely photo. Lovely post. Lovely, lovely people.

  25. Sandra

    I actually used to always say, “that’s not how the script went” when things didn’t turn out the way I wanted them to…someday, though, I’m hoping that my life will be like the director’s cut. 🙂

  26. Brooke

    1. There is always trouble brewing when a couple is not in the same movie. Brilliant, simply brilliant.

    2. Sophia looks incredibly beautiful in those photos. You know why? Because she is not only incredibly beautiful, but because she was happy – you can see it all over her face. Too bad your photographer was crap – as Sizzle said. Bet you looked handsome and happy as well! Come on Neil – there must be one or two shots where we can see your face!

    3. You mentioned Viggo for me, didn’t you!

  27. jenny

    well thanx for the plug, sweets! and well, i think you are right…relationships are never easy, but i guess you have to find the one you are willing to work on for it be successful. i love the movie metaphor, it’s quite true. all i know is, i’m gonna be the star :).

  28. sac

    Nice back.

  29. LisaBinDaCity

    I love this post! I never really thought about it that way but you are absolutely right. We are definitely all starring in our movies, (and hopefully our significant other has at least seen it 😉 )

    You’ve been linked!

  30. Bama Girl

    Don’t be down on yourself! It’s nice that you are still so complementary of your bride, even though she is not 100% your wife anymore.

  31. bella

    If life is a movie, then I want a sequel. Or two.
    And yes, Sophia is beautiful. And the back of your head does look nice…. there’s a quote there…. from “You Can’t Take It With You”…

  32. bettyonthebeach

    My Italian mother(although I’m beginning to think she has some Jewish in her too)emailed me this week and said: “I had a dream about you last night and you were getting married and having a baby…don’t take this the wrong way. My friend is always talking about her daughter with hopes that she’ll find someone. I told her maybe she doesn’t want to find someone, maybe she’s happy with the way things are. Anyway no reflection on how I think.”

    Don’t take it the wrong way??!!! I don’t even know where to begin with this one.

  33. He's Dead, Jim!

    Sure, one is the “star” in one’s movie.

    But sometimes the director quits because of artistic differences with the producer, the script ends up so-so since it’s based on a crappy novel. You’re way over budget so the costume designer and hair stylist are off on the period. The cinematographer is forced to change shots to hide discrepancies. Sometimes the co-stars are fickle and unreliable. Sometimes they clamor for bigger roles or you’re forced to co-star with your producer’s latest couch companion.

    In light of all of this it comes down to the character and talent of your star. Your star knows where the movie ought to go and does his best to perform his role with style and class.

    And that is all one can do. One cannot be concerned with what is happening on the neighboring lot.

    And hope that the sequel to your movie is not “Freddie versus Jason.”


  34. akaky

    Neil, those are great pictures, but your kippah doesnt look kippish, capische? It looks like a rolled up sailor’s hat.

  35. Bill

    Movies as metaphor is an interesting, though worrying notion. You know, I finally saw The Miracle of Morgan’s Creek (and damn near peed my pants) and, given this idea of living a movie, I’d have to say I’m Eddie Bracken, though I still haven’t found my Betty Hutton. (Actually, as I think of it, I have … but she’s in an Ernst Lubitsch film that, strangely, has several bit parts all played by Dennis Hopper.) (Don’t ask.)

    Anyway, my only real thought on this is … what happens in the third act? Are people living different movies, or one movie with several storylines? If the latter, it’s all about the third act. Everything else is exposition.

  36. groovebunny

    Wow Sophia looks gorgeous! And from what I can see of you in the photo…great hair!

  37. I love Mark Darcy

    the movie that keeps running through my head is “DAZED & CONFUSED”…. I’m not sure what that means but ….

  38. Lexie

    you douchebag.

    everyone knows the wedding is about the woman – THAT’S why she’s in the majority of the photos.

  39. Neil

    Lexie — majority, yes. All of them with just the back of my head visible, no.

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