Thoughts on a Rainy Day

It’s too bad she won’t live, but then again who does?

Rainy days are my favorite days, it’s like weather has conspired to put into action the feelings within my soul.

That sounds so dramatic!  We fours can be that way. If you aren’t familiar with the Enneagram, check out this link to learn more. Fours, also known as Romantics or Individualists, are very dramatic and kinda broody. We are the dreamers, staring off into space on a rainy day. Some would say there is nothing there, in that look of lost-ness, the truth is, there is so much there you would be sucked in if we let it out. We are staring off into space for your safety, don’t disrupt us!

But really, what truly defines the 4 for me is the emptiness. It’s like something is missing, and someone stole it and won’t give it back. I love the song “River of Dreams,” by Billy Joel, he sings about “looking for somethin’, taken outta my soul. Somethin’ I would never lose, somethin’ somebody stole.” I relate to that. I sing the hell out of that line every time I sing along in the car. It just seems to me to be me.

So rain really is the melancholy, somber type of weather that perfectly speaks to the feeling of lost-ness that I feel so regularly.

Rain is so symbolic. It can mean a washing away, a new beginning. Often we see rain after certain intense character development moments in movies to signify the character being washed clean and moving forward. This echoes our views on Baptism.

Rain as a symbol is most prevalent in Film Noir, a type of film popular in the 1940’s and 50’s. Noir was known for movement, cars, panes of glass, pictures, broken panes of glass and pictures, smoke, femme fatales, and rain. The overwhelming feelings of noir films are pessimism, being trapped in a bad situation, and desperation. Pretty much all of those are in every Noir film I’ve ever seen. Many of those aspects are still used in other forms of film for the same meanings.

One of my favorite films of all time is Blade Runner, and it takes most of it’s cues from Noir. Harrison Ford does a wonderful job playing a police officer in a near future, where robots, known as Replicants, are used off-world for war, and service, but aren’t allowed on Earth. Ford is brought back to bring down four Replicants that have gotten to Earth, and that all sounds like it should be PsyFi, but it kinda isn’t. There isn’t a scene in the film where there isn’t rain or smoke.

The interesting part is that Replicants have come back to Earth to, quite literally, meet their maker. They want to live longer! Replicants were created to have a lifespan of mere years, and these Replicants wanted longer life. Who would have thought a robot would want to live longer?

Well, spoiler alert, but they don’t get the extra life they were hoping for. Their programming can’t be changed, and after the final showdown between Roy, the Replicant leader, and Deckard, Ford’s character, the two characters wind up on the roof of an old hotel. Deckard is finished, near death, but Roy doesn’t kill him. Instead, Roy delivers a monologue.

“I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched c-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhuser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain.”

That line is amazing to me. What he is saying is that these memories make him human in some strange way. That although he is a machine, he has these memories, and feelings, and regrets, and, for a short time earlier in the movie, hope. Roy is also saying that no one will experience what he has, and that all of that will be lost with his death. It’s possibly the most beautiful thoughts I’ve encountered in any film I’ve watched, better than the ending to Casablanca, better than when Gollum and the ring go plunging into Mount Doom. Better than when the violins and trumpets start at the end of A New Hope. It gives me goosebumps.

As Deckard (Ford) begins to walk away, the creepy deputy, played by Edward James Olmos, is standing nearby. He says to Deckard, who has found a 5th Replicant but is keeping her safe, “It’s too bad she won’t live, but then again who does?” This is the shot in the heart that drives home the theme of the entire movie, “You won’t be remembered, your memories will be lost, and yet you strive to live for that instead of enjoying the moment.”

It’s too bad she won’t live, but then again who does?

This is the entire summary of Ecclesiastes. Although we try to make a difference, and do new things, and we try to be remembered, “there is nothing new under the sun,” and “For the wise and the fool there is no lasting remembrance.” The Preacher extols us that “There is nothing better for a person than that he should eat and drink and find enjoyment in his toil.”

It sometimes makes me sad to think that there is nothing new, nothing truly novel, nothing lasting.

But then I look up, and the sun’s come out.

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