Clifford, the Big Red Dog

I will not soon be forgetting this movie—not so much because of the profundity of the movie but because of the circumstances surrounding it. Two of my youngest grandchildren engineered the perfect Sunday afternoon to celebrate my birthday week. I was to be picked up, reminded to have my mask along, and taken to the theatre with seats that recline. The parents were doing the driving and getting our tickets. Our only decision would be picking out the snacks.

They chose Airheads, the most delectable tangy chewy things. I introduced them to one of my “forbidden foods”—Dibs, individual little ice cream bites, perfect for sharing.  We had two big bottles of water and paper  cups to pour it into. The previews were fun, including clips from “Encanto,” the long awaited animated film coming out on Thanksgiving.  In short, it was all divine, really, a joy out of this world with all its problems and fighting, variants of Covid, messed up supply lines, and Black Friday, etc.

The older grandson accepted the praise for having chosen the film, and the younger grandson explained to me that it was about people “accepting things that are different.”  Clifford was different—a really humongous dog that only a few people could understand and love despite all the commotion he caused because of his size.

The difference to those who loved him  was incidental.   So, actually, despite all the laughing, the movie had a profound message.

Many of the most profound truths and secrets to happiness aren’t really that complicated.  As the Zen masters discovered, it all begins with being present in the moment, open to whatever that moment offers, and embracing it with gratitude.