Opinion by Jake McDagitt
Right now it seems like the whole world is caving in on me. I’m in the middle of a messy divorce, I just lost my job, I live in a seedy apartment with no furniture and no one believes in my dream to build a glass walkway under Lake Michigan.
Every day gets just a little bit worse. The rent is overdue, every piece of mail is a bill or collection notice, and up until last Wednesday the phone rang incessantly with more of the same. My ’82 Datsun got repossessed, and I still owe $800 on that, not including the repair bill for a transmission that I now cannot prove was faulty.
I fit the general description of the suspect in a string of robberies that dot my neighborhood. I don’t have an alibi because all my friends disowned me and I can’t afford to go out.
I finally stopped telling myself that it can’t get any worse because I have been consistently wrong.
But all that is going to change one day. I do not know what form it will take, but it will eventually be condensed and edited together as the turn-it-all-around segment of an adequately produced Lifetime or Hallmark Channel movie called “A Man, A Plan, A Tunnel” about my life. A real Hero’s Journey kind of thing.
I don’t know if they will ask me what music they should use, but I would caution against anything too retro, like “Don’t Stop Believin” by Journey. I guess they have musical directors who pick things like that.
Right after the lowest point, I’ll meet that perfect woman who sees through all the layers of stuff going on in my life. She believes in me and my dream, even when the guy at the permits office points out that the lake is too murky for visitors to see anything under water.
At about the 70 minute mark, the montage will take about three minutes and juxtapose shots of us painting our new apartment with shots of my doing a series of menial jobs, depositing my first paycheck in the bank, drawing up plans for the tunnel, meeting with investors, going back to the drawing board, a kitchen table full of bills, thinking that it’s all just a useless lie, crying in a darkened stairwell, my hot new girlfriend telling me that it’s going to be okay, a bank statement that shows a growing balance, quick interspersed shots of the pile of bills
getting smaller, us rollerblading in the park and feeding each other strawberries at a picnic overlooking some beautiful skyline and finally us at the bank hugging and waving a big fat check. They may want to end it with the champagne popping scene, but that may be a bit overdone.
The remaining twenty minutes of the movie will be about the actual construction of the tunnel and the grand opening, which won’t be a montage and will probably have a triumphant original score. It’s hard to say, though, because none of that part has happened yet.
Right now I’m hoping the present time in my life is the part about 65 minutes in where I’m about to meet the hot new girlfriend. She’s going to be incredible, because I know what a leap it must be to fall for a guy living in an apartment like this.