Ed loves movies.  There are two movies he loves most.  The first is What About Bob?

I don’t remember Ed loving movies when we were young.  I did.  I craved them.  I just don’t remember a movie that seemed to have an impact on him until a few years after his accident.  He had a VCR and I bought him a copy of What About Bob?  Those were the years when Ed did not laugh easily.  He was too close to his old life as a successful businessman and sexy beast.  He grieved.

The first time we watched What About Bob?  was the first time I remember hearing his laugh…his post-accident laugh.  It is a glorious laugh.  I can’t recall the laugh of my brother out of a wheel chair.  It was probably a little unkind…sneering…at least when I was around.   His laugh for the past twenty-six years is one-of-a-kind.  It is hilarious. 

It consists of a huge inhalation.  If there happens to be anything in his mouth…like food or drink…(which there often is)…it is pulled down into his windpipe like krill into a Humpbacks mouth…and he chokes.  He is used to choking so he has a good cough response that clears his throat…completely… at these moments.  The food or drink projects out of his mouth with force and speed.

This will be important as other movie stories emerge.

So we began watching the movie starring Bill Murray as a mess of man going to a psychiatrist office.  The psychiatrist, Richard Dryfus, has just written a book and is very full of himself.  He is in a hurry to see this guy and then leave on vacation so he gives Bob a copy of his book entitled Baby Steps.  Bob feels he is greatly helped by the book so when he starts to get panicky again he gets on a bus and goes to find the doctor at his vacation home.

It is hilarious.

Ed watched What About Bob? every Friday night for almost fifteen years…until he got his computer.  Every few years we had to get a new copy because the previous one had worn through.

One night after he’d been watching it for over a decade he invited me to watch with him.  I did.  I couldn’t believe how loud he still laughed…and at every single gag.  .  It was hard to breath because Ed’s constant oxygen sucking laughs had almost cleared the air dry of the stuff we need to inhale.

He got very serious at one point in the movie because he wanted me to verify that there was an editing error.  He stopped the movie and showed me the moment over and over.  I watched.  He was wrong.  I showed him how he was wrong.  He started laughing. 

“I have watched that a thousand times and I always thought that was a mistake.  He laughed hard at himself…a skill few have mastered as well as he.  “That’s so funny!” he said over and over.

I’ve always loved when people say, “That’s so funny.”  Ed is generous with that phrase, and he means it, and he says it about almost every movie that he loves…which brings us to the part 2 of Ed’s love of movies….