The waitress brings out my pie. It was bubbling, and she comments "It may be a little hot. I think I put it in for too long." Yes, she did. In fact, it ended up caramelizing to the point of being burnt. I had a few bites and did not eat anymore. I explained this to the waitress and she took it off our bill. My friend picked up my coffee on her tab.
We then went across the street to the theater. We got a great parking space in a very packed parking lot. We walked in, "I'd like a ticket for the Life Of Pi." "Sorry we are sold out." I can't even remember the last time I have heard this. Are movies even sold out anymore? It's not like this was opening night. This movie has been out for quite sometime. But there is was. Pi was sold out - the 2D playing of Pi. We checked my friends smart phone and found that the next playing of Pi was across town, in 3D at 8:40pm. Neither of us really wanted to see it in 3D, but we did wanted to see it, so we headed across town.
As we approached the theater, we realized we had about 40 minutes until the movie started. My friend suggested we go somewhere to get dessert since she hadn't had any, and neither had I. As we approached the theater, she noticed a coney island. Sure enough, we pulled in.
My friend, who can't have dairy, is very limited in the kinds of desserts she can have. So pie was one of the only desserts available to her. She asked for the apple pie. The waitress left and came back "I'm sorry, we're all out of apply pie." My friend settled on the cherry pie. A few minutes later, the waitress shows up and sets on the table a piece of apply pie. We looked at each other confused. The waitress says "This pie is free. I found it way in the back and it's all kind of mangled up, so you can just have it for free." We both look down at the pie. It looks in perfect condition. It looks like any other normal slice of apple pie. My friend later comments "I can't get my slices of pie to turn out this good!" The waitress tells us she has put everything on one check - I now get to pick up my friend's coffee, as her pie is free at this place.
We head over to the theater. Get there on time. Get another great parking space. Purchase our tickets, $3 more than a normal movie because it is in 3D. We settle in, and as we are preparing for our movie, it starts to dawn on us that we have just both had pie at two different places and it was free at both - now we are sitting in a movie called The Life of Pi! And we realize it was a Pi/Pie night.
-----But there's even more---- (WARNING SPOILERS TO THE MOVIE)
As I wrote in my journal after the movie about this experience, and the movie, I realize the whole pie/Pi similarity.
The Life of Pi takes us through a life journey of a young boy named Pi. It is the story of how he was on a ship that sank and at first, he was on a life boat with a zebra, orangutang, jackal, and tiger. The jackal ends up killing the zebra and later the orangutang. Then the tiger kills the jackal. So the only survivors on the boat are Pi and the tiger. The majority of the movie takes us through this story of survival and the relationship between Pi and the tiger. It's quite a breath taking movie and also very nerve racking at some points.
Near the end of the movie, the boy is being interviewed by the company of the ship that sank. He told them the story (the one we saw played out on the screen). But they are not satisfied with this. So he tells another story. Instead of it being the zebra, orangutang, jackal and tiger that are on the life boat, it is a buddhist, his mother, the cook and himself. It's not a pretty story, but more believable to the shipping company, and maybe even to the audience.
We are left to wonder, which story was true. The one we say played out on the screen, or the one described and probably more realistic. In the end, we are left wanting to believe in the one we saw played out. It's a story of hope.
BACK TO THE PIE
My friend asked for apple pie. Apple pie sometimes symbolizes freedom and truth in our country. She asks for a slice of apple pie. She is then told there is no apple pie, so she settled for cherry. Not what she wanted or asked for, but it's what they have. Next thing that turns up is apple pie. Apple, cherry, apple.
In the movie we are given a "slice of Pi" in the story of the tiger, but then told a story about people on the boat. But we want to believe, and Pi believes, in the tiger story. Tiger, people, tiger.
The cherry pie never had any substance. It was just a concept we were given as an alternative to the apple. It was all just a tale that we never really wanted. The tiger (apple pie) story had more substance. Something to believe in. It's a story we want to hear. It's a piece of pie we want to have. Moreover, the apple pie, in the waitresses view was "mangled". Just as the story of the tiger was "unbelievable". But not to my friend and I. We thought the pie looked perfect. And the story of the tiger was perfect. It's all in how you see it. It's all in what your perspective is. The waitresses perspective was that the pie was mangled. The shipping company's perspective was that the story was unbelievable/mangled. So much so they asked for another story. But then we are left with a story about people that is unsettling, unnerving and leaves you feeling empty - just like the cherry pie would have left us feeling. It's not what my friend wanted. It's what she would have had to settle for because. The apple pie, the story of the tiger, leaves us feeling full and fulfilled. Pi does not want cherry pie...and neither do we.
At 4:44pm as I stood in my kitchen with no plans and I made that first phone call, I had no idea I'd be at 3 coney islands within a 3 hour time span. I had no idea I would have so much pie in my life that night. But I love how it all played out. And I love the way the universe puts these experiences out there for us, just waiting for us to wake up and see them.