Man on Wire, Exquisite

Man on Wire is a documentary about a French man who (illegally) walked a tightrope between the World Trade Center towers in 1974. The film is a beautiful story about the events leading up to the daring feat and those who helped him pull it off.

It was in the middle of watching the film a few hours ago that I realized what draws me to French culture. At one point, Philippe speaks about the reaction of the American public to his tightrope dancing; he remembers that Americans wanted to immediately know why he had done it. And in doing so, he suggests that they somewhat missed the point of doing something beautiful and surprising.

American culture is known for its optimism, but French culture knows how to appreciate slivers of beauty. There is a spontaneity, an acceptance of the dark side of life, and a willingness to appreciate the exquisite, be it in a moment or a pastry. Without knowing how to put words to it at the time, I adored this about living in France.

Mission for the week: find something exquisite and appreciate it for what it is.

1 comment:

Courtney Russell said...


One of my students' favorite books last year. Check it out.