How Many Times Can Love Return

Saw the movie Happy Birthday starring Rene Liu and Louis Koo on my flight to Manila.  Amazing show.  Some parts were so funny that i had to cover my mouth hard ‘cos i was bursting with laughter… and some parts were so sad my eyes swelled with tears.  Was quite a torture trying to hold back my tears when lunch was being served!  It was like, “I’ll like the…” *sniff* “fish please”.

It was a simple movie.  Simple plot but beautifully shot.  Directed by my favourite director too – Jingle Ma.  His style is soooo recognisable… and it’s probably no coincidence that the other HK movie that i love, Summer Holiday, was also shot by him.

Anyway, the movie was about how this pair of college lovers, Louis Koo and Rene Liu were together, and were not together, over the years.  They never officially “broke up” but somehow just as distance separated them, time brought them together again.  Rene Liu always had insecurities about herself and the relationship ‘cos she was deeply scarred by her mom walking out on the family when she was a child.  And Louis Koo was quite the ladies’ man, flirting around constantly though he knew that the only woman he would ever marry was Rene Liu.

Then one day, Louis Koo told Rene Liu that he was marrying someone else.  Rene Liu was devastated.  ‘Cos throughout the years, even during the times when they were “not together”, they were always part of each others’ lives… keeping in touch through sms, ICQ, etc.  Their exchanges may be about small little things like a blackout caused by an earthquake, or complaints about exam stress, the purchase of a new car, etc… but through these little things, it was as though they were never apart.

After Louis Koo supposedly “got married and migrated to Shanghai”, both of them would still send each other a “happy birthday” greeting during their birthdays.  This went on for 3 years.  Then this year (forgot to mention that the movie starts in the present but the story unfolds in flashbacks), Louis Koo forgot to send Rene Liu a birthday greeting and she’s very upset of ‘cos.  The greeting eventually comes… 2 days late (if i don’t recall wrongly)… and Rene Liu is happy again. 

But (here comes the twist), their group of college friends then find out that Louis Koo passed away 6 months before Rene Liu’s current birthday… and that he never got married.  Louis Koo was diagnosed with rectal cancer and went away for 3 years to seek treatment.  But he couldn’t be cured and so before his death, he instructed his sister to continue to send Rene Liu a happy birthday message on his behalf.  (Oh damnit… i’m feeling soppy again!).  So sad right?  :`(  Boohoohoo.  *Sniff*

Anyway, i could really identify with various parts of the movie.  Like how it feels to wait for an greeting on your birthday… that totally reminded me of an old old friend of mine.  When he went overseas to study (which btw, the first time Louis Koo and Rene Liu were seperated was ‘cos he went overseas to study), we would chat on ICQ, and IRC, and we would talk on the phone pretty often too.  That slowly watered down to a birthday card snail mailed during each others’ birthdays… then it became a e-greeting… which eventually downgraded into an sms… and one day, it just stopped.  Well, he stopped… i still wish him happy birthday as i do with most of my friends.  Sigh. 

Actually i always knew that the birthday greetings would stop one day… and every year i got an sms wishing me happy birthday, it made the wait the next year worse.  I would start thinking about whether the greeting would come like 1 week before my birthday?  And the anticipation and anxiety would grow as my birthday drew nearer.  Then came one year when my birthday came and went… and no sms greeting came.  That was when i knew i was out of his life, permanently.  Sigh.

Another thing that i identified with the movie was when Rene Liu suggested being “best friends” with Louis Koo, versus being in a relationship ‘cos couples break up but best friends don’t, and she wanted to see Louis Koo for the rest of her life.  Don’t you think this is so true?  Sigh.  I mean, this is something that has certainly crossed my mind many times before.  This is definitely one way of preventing future “collateral damage”.  (Not to mention not getting involved with your buddy’s ex-gf/bf, which is a topic for another time).

A third thing that rang true for me, and i believe this is the case for many of us, is how sometimes you might have this incredible urge to just send an sms to tell someone what you’re doing?  And even though whatever you write in your sms may not warrant a reply, the other party will nevertheless respond because it’s just such a natural thing to do?  Just touching base with each other?

Oh well, there were other issues / themes / whatever you call it raised in the movie that i really identified with… but it’s 2:58am now and i’m working tomorrow (though T.G.I.F!) so i’ll have to end the post here.  Here’s a song that i’ve heard before but never appreciated the lyrics till it was featured in the movie…

 

 

有多少爱可以重来

常常责怪自己当初不应该
常常后悔没有把你留下来
为什么明明相爱到最后还是要分开
是否我们总是俳徊在心门之外

谁知道又和你相遇在人海
命运如此安排总叫人无奈
这些年过得不好不坏只是好像少了一个人存在
而我渐渐明白你仍然是我不变的关怀

有多少爱可以重来有多少人愿意等待
当懂得珍惜以后回来却不知那份爱会不会还在
有多少爱可以重来有多少人值得等待
当爱情已经桑田沧海是否还有勇气去爱

music……

谁知道又和你相遇在人海
命运如此安排总叫人无奈
这些年过得不好不坏只是好像少了一个人存在
而我渐渐明白你仍然是我不变的关怀

有多少爱可以重来有多少人愿意等待
当懂得珍惜以后回来却不知那份爱会不会还在
有多少爱可以重来有多少人值得等待
当爱情已经桑田沧海是否还有勇气去爱

有多少爱可以重来有多少人愿意等待
当懂得珍惜以后回来却不知那份爱会不会还在
有多少爱可以重来有多少人值得等待
当爱情已经桑田沧海是否还有勇气去爱

Collateral Damage

Two couples i know, both of which have been dating a long time, just broke up recently.  1 couple had been dating for 4 years, and the other 8 years.  I don’t know whether ‘incompatibility’ is a valid reason for a break up.  ‘Cos there are couples who do not seem to fit together at all, but their love is strong enough to bind them together.  Perhaps it’s the divergence of beliefs and dreams, and the increased number of choices that people have nowadays that make relationships so extra fragile.  Or maybe it’s just that we are becoming a more selfish lot, rushing into relationships more impulsively, and then running out even faster.

The first couple mentioned above belong to the same clique of friends and with their break up, which was initiated by the gal, she feels that it’s only right that she gives both of them a bit of space and so she won’t be hanging out with the clique of friends for a while… which is (i think) the right thing to do.  She said it was “collateral damage”.  A very apt description indeed.

A guy i used to go out with got married recently.  We’ve always kept in touch after our break up.  Maybe not frequently… but he would always refer any real estate deals to me (when i was still in the industry) and we would always say hi whenever we saw each other.  But after his wedding invitations went out, he looked right past me whenever our paths crossed.  Only one way to describe this – collateral damage.  I always refer to his now wife as a 3rd party, though to be fair, i will add that they only got together “officially” after we broke up.  But hey, what’s in a name?  A rose by any other name smells as sweet?  A nail stepped on by either foot would be as painful?

Then there’s my most recent dating fiasco.  My “former friend” is not only giving me a wide berth… even my poor sayang gets protracted replies from this guy with regard to group outings and the like.  I kind of suspect this “former friend” is hesitant in replying ‘cos he’s not sure if i’ll be there.  Sometimes i am, sometimes i’m not.  Whatever the case, get over it mate!  People move on you know.  He always said he uses a snail emoticon in his MSN nick ‘cos his life is moving too slowly for him.  Hmm… maybe that explains it huh?

Well, tragic as it is, the most common collateral damage is and will always be, friendship.