The Man In The Window

Today’s post comes from tim

mitch

i feel bad

real bad

a couple of weeks ago we had a police car pull up in front of the house and i told my son he was in trouble for parking his car on the streets of prestigious west bloomington and as he cursed the uppity neighbors who would call on a wonderful guy like him it became obvious that the cops were there for a different reason.

i had to go to a meeting but i got a call half an hour later from my family that a body bag came out of the house and the intrigue was too much to handle.

i have a hot tub between my house and the neighbors and i was doing my late night dip 4 nights in a row when at 1030 or so the alarm would go off on the truck in the driveway next door and not just for a couple of beeps of the horn either, it was a good couple of minutes of horn honk honk honking followed by mitch the next door neighbor coming out and shutting off the alarm but starting the truck then sitting in the truck with it running in the driveway for 10 minutes before leaving. i would finish my hot tub and go in wondering for a minute or two what that was about but getting on with my life. even the 4th or 5th night i found it odd but not odd enough to have me try to put together the puzzle.

i remembered the scene in rear window where the wendell corey as the cop tells jimmy stewart that he should allow other people the privacy they deserve. a lot of things appear odd when observed for the outside.

i started working the theory in my mind. the mom who i had met. kind of an aunt bea sort of woman had the son mitch who i met the day debbie first came to the house to unpack boxes in the kitchen. he came in the garage and gave one of those helllloooooo call out from his entry through the open garage door. i went to say hello and his intro was to say “ hi… my name is mitch. i live next door, do you want me to plow your driveway this winter?”

i laughed and said “no, we can cover this ourselves” (we had just laughed about how the driveway was barely big enough to park the cars on and how it would take 15 minutes to shovel after a foot of snow) mitch shrugged and waved goodbye as he retreated back through the garage full of unpacked boxes. mitch is a cross between a cave man and a troll who danced when he stepped and looked like a refugee from a russian circus troop. that was the last i saw of him other than as he drove off regularly in his truck.

my theories were based totally on my thought of the moment.

maybe he was a wild man who was needing to get away from his mom who was beating him and so he pushed the alarm button on his key ring until she let him go shut it off. he sat in the car until he couldn’t stand it any more then drove off to return after she had fallen asleep.

maybe she was the one getting beat up and she pushed the button so he would have to stop and go out to shut it off. he would sit and cool down until he drove off to return later and try it again when cooler heads prevailed.

then one day the cooler heads did not prevail and he killed her and was on the run, the truck had not been in the driveway for a week and so they hadn’t caught him.

the story needed a little adjustment when the junk inc truck showed up and took away 1 large piece of furniture like a love seat or an oversized chair . the windows on the house were opened to let the odors out both upstairs and down so the body must have been there long enough to start to stink.

people started showing up in the driveway and going in to clean and pack stuff up.

the comings and goings were the riddle and then the pickup truck mitch drove showed up.

so he wasn’t on the run… but wait it had duct tape over the rear window covering a hole about the size of a bullet hole made by a pistol or a rifle.

how did that fit into the equation?

my next theory was that mitch got shot and took a cab home or got a ride home and died in the basement. his mom must have been in florida on vacation and when he didn’t answer the phone she called the police who checked it out and discovered the body… but this was all conjecture.

we don’t know any neighbors and don’t know of a way to find out what happened. the other night my son devin looked up police reports for the house next door and found out mitch was a troubled guy who had been sited for carrying a gun while on parole as a felon and was in trouble for that.   a bit more research discovered his obit saying he had died unexpectedly on february 8th. that didn’t shed any light for me but my son said “died unexpectedly” is code for suicide in the lingo of police and obits.

so i feel guilty for dreaming up all the fantastic stories about the beatings and who did what to who. i feel bad for not being aware that the troubled guy next door was needing something and i was oblivious.

it makes you realize that there are people out there that you stand next to everyday that are in need of something, maybe a smile or a kind word or a job other than plowing driveways on a mild minnesota winter in order to make the demons move back a little

my family is glad we don’t have a felon who danes like a troll and carries guns living next door. i hadn’t thought of that. i just feel bad that a soul in need was next door and i didn’t even realize it.

i guess the reality is that i still don’t know anything for sure but it gives me a funny feeling every time i look in the window 50 feet away from the hot tub and realize he was so unhappy.

miss true heart, miss torso and raymond burr all lived outside jimmy stewart’s window in alfred hitchcock’s story. mitch lived outside mine.

different stuff touches us and makes an imprint. some good some bad some potent some just a little angle kiss.
what’s your favorite movie?

83 thoughts on “The Man In The Window”

  1. Rise and Shine Baboons!

    Mitch was a troubled soul, wasn’t he? They do live next door and shop for groceries with us all.

    I have a list of my faves, but not just one that stands head and shoulders above them all. The list is mostly human dramas and comedies that are character studies of one sort or another that reflect on how any person responds to a challenging situation: Ordinary People, Tootsie, Four Weddings and a Funeral, To Kill a Mockingbird, etc. I love the old Katherine Hepburn/Spencer Tracy movies–great characters. Hook– a modern day myth about how men grow up.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I second all of those, Jacque. Another film from long ago that I have seen a couple of times is The Tree of Wooden Clogs. It may be time to view it again. Another one, a little more recent is My Sweet Little Village, is such a lovely little film.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I feel your pain, tim. It’s always sad to realize that you failed to make a connection that may have made a difference. Nice job on telling the story.

    I’m notoriously bad at remembering films. Three that come to mind that I do remember, and that I enjoyed are: The Wizard of Oz, The Shawshank Redemption, and Fried Green Tomatoes. As with so many other things, I wouldn’t necessarily call them my favorites, but they were certainly satisfying.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Casablanca hands down. But another one near the top of my list that many people wouldn’t think twice about is Silverado. Directed by Lawrence Kasdan and featuring a truly all-star cast; Scott Glenn, Kevin Kline, Danny Glover, Kevin Costner, Brian Dennehy, Linda Hunt, Lynn Whitfield, Jeff Goldblum. A modern version of the quintessential Western. I never get tired of watching it.

    Aall time favorite comedy is Young Frankenstein. Features two of the greatest one-line jokes ever written; “He …vas….my… boyfriend!” and,
    Oh, sweet mystery of life, at last, I’ve found you!” Honorable mention one-liner goes to Madeline Kahn’s character when she says. “C’mere, you little zipper neck!”

    Uh-oh. Now that I’ve started quoting one-liners I may be at it all day! 😉

    Chris in Owatonna

    Liked by 4 people

  4. I don’t watch many movies more than once, but I can watch The Reivers (based on a Wm Faulkner novel) with (one of if not the last Steve McQueen’s) over and over and over. Especially one of the best horse race scenes ever, voiced over by Burgess Meredith and words by Faulkner. Other favorites include Some Like It Hot and Singing in the Rain and of course To Kill a Mockingbird (if only to see and hear Gregory Peck). Lordy, am I showing my age?

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I very much like the film A Thousand Clowns staring Jason Robards. I saw this in the late 60s and it had a tone to it that struck home with me. I especially like the scene where the nice social worker tells Jason Robards she might have ro ask him to give up the boy he is raising and he jokingly falls over dead.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Oh yes, of course. I was married to a man who constantly quoted from the film, imagining, I suspect, he was the Jason Robards character in the flesh, which I would disagree with…one summer a group in Moose Lake decided to perform the play, I got to be the social worker. My ex didn’t get the lead, but the man who did was more like the character in real life, but it was his first play sober and he had difficulty learning his lines. After the play he received rave reviews while the rest of us “seemed a little nervous” (not knowing what he was going to say or how it would end…) The other thing I remember is I fell off a horse and cracked ribs the week of performances…when I was suppose to cry, I didn’t have to act…it hurt!

      Liked by 4 people

      1. Good to hear there are other fans of that movie including you, Cynthia. I don’t know why it sticks out in my mind over so many other more famous movies that I seen. It is still my top favorite.

        Like

  6. A more recent favorite is “Cuckoo” a film set in 1944 with a Finnish sniper, a Russian soldier and a Sami farm woman, none of whom speak the same language. It is funny and sweet.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ll have to check that out. I much prefer quiet, thoughtful films over the noisy, action packed ones that seem to appeal to audiences these days.

      Liked by 2 people

  7. The Lion in Winter is a favorite. Anything with Katharine Hepburn is worth the couple of hours. Also It’s a Wonderful Life, which pops up regularly, usually on Christmas Eve.

    One of the things I dislike about the way TV has changed over the years is that they’ve pretty much stopped showing movies on broadcast television. You have to get cable or satellite or Netflix or something.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. I can’t pick just one. I’ll go with three offbeat gems that most folks haven’t heard about.

    “Strangers in Good Company” is a semi-documentary depicting the lives of eight older women who become stranded when a bus breaks down, obliging them to improvise while someone fixes the bus. We gradually get to know these women, coming to appreciate how lovely and interesting they are. The film is gorgeous to look at, with performances that are memorable and endearing.

    “The Straight Story” is a true story about how an old man travels from Iowa to Wisconsin to see his seriously ill brother. Because Alvin Straight has medical issues that prevent him from getting a driving license, he makes the 240-mile voyage on a riding lawn mower. It is a “road story” with many unexpected and touching twists as Alvin meets people along the way. Especially vivid are the hitchhiking teen runaway and the woman who can’t drive anywhere without colliding with deer.

    “The Japanese Story” is a flawed but fascinating little film about two highly dissimilar people thrown together in the Australian outback. They have a brief affair that ends in a shocking way. One of them is catapulted into grief and confusion, trying to see an appropriate way to deal with the horror life has served up for her. The film starts weakly but gets better and better until it ends in an elegiac and deeply moving way.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I have seen the two first films you mentioned, Steve, and I agree, both are wonderful little gems. I’ll have to check out The Japanese Story.

      In the vein of offbeat gems, have you seen My Brilliant Career and The Rabbit Proof Fence?

      Like

  9. Morning. tim this is a much more sobering ending than I imagined when you told us the beginning of this story at Blevins. How can we be sure though that “died unexpectedly” isn’t obit code for murder?

    Favorite movies…. (not in any particular order)
    Star Wars IV (others are OK, but this is my fav)
    Princess Bride (“You keep using that word”)
    Sahara (classic buddie flick)
    Jumpin Jack Flash (“I got moths. Big, mutant, junkie moths!”)
    Murder at 1600 (not sure why I like this so much, but I do)
    The Incredibles (“I never look back, darling; it distracts from the now.”)
    To Catch a Thief (Grace Kelly – need I say more?)
    Sneakers (“You guys’ll be chalk outlines without me.”)
    American Dreamer (classic mistaken identify film)
    Hopscotch (“Money is too expensive to be earned that way.)

    I’ll stop now……

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Netflix came into my life during a sedentary period of boredom.

    Two movies come to mind as favorites:

    -Haute Cuisine-I am fascinated by the life of Hortense Laborie and her experience as the personal chef for the President of France.
    It is adapted from true life…French…with subtitles.

    -Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries-set in late 1920’s Australia this series fascinates me not just by the characters woven into Miss Fisher’s life nor the mysteries…but her fabulous wardrobe and those marvelous automobiles! It is a series with several seasons…but I believe it is a MUST to start from the first season.

    I have more…but those are two that I can watch a second, third time
    Haute Cuisine simply entertains me with “feel good” and a bit of humor. I love that it is from a true event.
    Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries are rather light hearted and even my husband enjoys them. (That is how I watched a second time)

    Like

    1. I finally watched Haute Cuisine…and, yes, enjoyed it. Miss Fisher goes without saying as most fun and the costumes as visually as pleasing as downton abby…maybe more.

      Like

  11. OT. Several of you have heard me say I won’t click on any Trump stories out of principles (I don’t want any of my “clicks” attributed to him), so I’m only seeing headlines. Somebody PLEASE tell me that the GOP has not disintegrated to manhood insults! CNN headline is “Trump defends size of his . Good grief.

    Like

    1. The funny thing for me is that I’ve been predicting Trump would do this very thing. Given his ego, his attacks on others, his boorishness and given his obsession with physical attributes it seemed inevitable that he would sooner or later brag about the size of his “manhood.”

      Liked by 1 person

      1. the amazing thing to me is that 70% of the gop backs the trump cruz whack act and i kinda think has runnig will be a great wake up call. im concerned that we dont realize that the whack show is for real and they all vote every time. lazy dems had better wake up and show up at the voting booth in november or we will remember jesssie ventura as a voice of reason in comparison

        Liked by 1 person

  12. Such a strange event, tim. Life’s a mystery, and there are very few people we meet where we know what’s going on in their lives. The serenity prayer comes to mind.

    Shirley Valentine
    Fried Green Tomatoes
    A Thousand Clowns
    The Parent Trap (Hayley Mills one)
    Cabaret

    Many others mentioned above, but I know there’s at least one more off-beat one if I can think of it…

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Can’t ever forget Harold and Maude, indeed. First time I saw it was after spending a couple hours in a live performance of Sleuthe…then Harold and Maude? My head felt like I was on drugs…but pleasantly.

        Liked by 3 people

  13. I would have to list mine by category (drama, comedy, foreign language, classic, etc.) – way too many to enumerate here. There is one movie that I have seen a gazillion times and never get tired of – “The Great Escape”. I do tend to like the indie “art house” movies and certainly prefer character/dialogue driven flicks to the loud, blow-em-up variety.
    Was thrilled that “Spotlight” claimed the big prize at the Oscars.

    Other faves (in no particular order):

    The Stoning of Soriya
    The Secret of Roan Inish
    What’s Eating Gilbert Grape? (wonderful performance by a young Leo DiCaprio)
    Strictly Ballroom
    The Counterfeiter
    To Kill a Mockingbird
    Star Wars Episode IV
    The First Grader
    Monsoon Wedding
    Casablanca
    Sunshine (Ralph Fiennes playing father, son, and grandson)
    The Magdalen Sisters

    I could go on and on but will stop here…………..also really liked Rabbit Proof Fence and Fried Green Tomatoes…

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I’m chuckling here – as always, I tend to get so engrossed with the story any TB member writes, that I miss the question following it! I’m wondering about the cause of death (unless I missed it), and how vital that would be to conjuring up multiple scenarios.

    My all-time forever favorite movie: Harold and Maude. The older I get, the more strongly identify with Maude’s character. I loved the Cat Stevens sound track and, to this day, find myself singing, “If you wanna be you be you and if you wanna be me be me cuz there’s a million things to do, you know that there are”

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I can’t resist naming four more old favorites. The funniest lines I’ve ever encountered were in Tremors. The most fascinating set of insights into human relationships were in Lone Star. The most shocking plot twists were in The Crying Game. The finest character studies were in Tunes of Glory. I’d like to name more!

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Still struggling with whether or not to watch Zorba again. I have the beheading scene so entrenched in my mind’s eye, I can’t bear to see that again. But I feel in love with Alan Bates in that movie. And Greece.
        (Anthony Quinn was already a favorite).

        Like

  16. Local Hero
    Cold Comfort Farm
    Shipping News
    Midnight in Paris
    Tampopo
    Cosi
    Oh Brother Where Art Thou
    Big Night
    Time Bandits
    Silent Running
    Buckaroo Banzai

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Oh… I love Buckaroo Banzai! “I’ve been ionized. But I’m OK now.” The final credits and music are great.

      Like

  17. How about double features, like
    The Grey Fox and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, or
    That Thing You Do and Almost Famous

    Like

      1. Once saw Alan Bates in a play in San Francisco…just because he was in it. But we were in the nosebleed section and had been drinking all afternoon so I kept falling asleep. Such a shame.

        Liked by 1 person

  18. Since Woody Allen was mentioned, I’d throw in Bullets Over Broadway. John Cusack and Dianne Wiest were wonderful.

    In the same vein as Shirley Valentine… I liked Enchanted April.

    In the “musicals” category, Fiddler On the Roof. I could watch it once a week and not get tired of it.

    “Kolya” was a wonderful foreign film, featuring the most remarkable performance I’ve ever seen by a child actor under the age of 6.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Evening! I crawled back out of the woodwork to talk about movies.
    I like the old ones filled with witty dialouge and handsome movie stars.
    ‘The Night They Raided Minskys’ is a favorite.

    (It’s not the greatest movie, but there’s the man with the eyebrows and a great speech about ‘The Finger of Righteousness!’ )

    ‘Pocketful of Miracles’ is another late night classic for me.
    Glen Ford, Bette Davis, Peter Falk, and, my hero, Edward Everett Horton.

    “Nobody arrives first, sir. They all arrive last.”

    Then there’s ‘All That Jazz’ and ‘Up’ and ‘Wall-E’.
    The music from ‘The Mission’ and ‘American Beauty’ and ‘Oh Brother….’ I have the audio track of ‘All That Jazz’ and I play it, loudly, for a few days before I open a show. It keeps my creative juices primed.
    The cinematography (if you can still call it that in an animated movie) of ‘Ratatouille’ when Anton Ego tastes the ratatouille and flashes back to his childhood.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. casablanca

    Ordinary People,
    Tootsie,
    Four Weddings and a Funeral,
    To Kill a Mockingbird,

    old Katherine Hepburn/Spencer Tracy movies–great characters (there are 9).
    pat and mike, woman of the year, desk set, guess whos coming to dinner,keeper of the flame, the sea of grass, without love, state of the union, adams rib
    Hook– a modern day myth about how men grow up.

    a tree of wooden clogs
    My Sweet Little Village
    The Wizard of Oz,
    The Shawshank Redemption,
    Fried Green Tomatoes.
    My Brilliant Career
    The Rabbit Proof Fence?
    The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter
    Harold and Maude,
    King of Hearts
    big fish

    silverado
    young frankenstein

    the reivers
    some like it hot
    breakfast at tiffanys
    cuckoo
    Australia…
    Priscilla, Queen of the Desert

    the station agent
    Friendly Persuasion
    The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence
    Amelie
    Shirley Valentine
    Tom Jones

    the trip to bountiful
    our man godfrey
    second hand lions
    sullivans travels

    strangers in good company
    the straight story
    the japanese story

    a thousand clowns

    charade

    the lion in winter

    Star Wars IV (others are OK, but this is my fav)
    Princess Bride (“You keep using that word”)
    Sahara (classic buddie flick)
    Jumpin Jack Flash (“I got moths. Big, mutant, junkie moths!”)
    Murder at 1600 (not sure why I like this so much, but I do)
    The Incredibles (“I never look back, darling; it distracts from the now.”)
    To Catch a Thief (Grace Kelly – need I say more?)
    Sneakers (“You guys’ll be chalk outlines without me.”)
    American Dreamer (classic mistaken identify film)
    Hopscotch (“Money is too expensive to be earned that way.)

    -Haute Cuisine-
    -Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries

    Shirley Valentine
    Fried Green Tomatoes
    A Thousand Clowns
    The Parent Trap (Hayley Mills one)
    Cabaret

    The Stoning of Soriya
    The Secret of Roan Inish
    What’s Eating Gilbert Grape? (wonderful performance by a young Leo DiCaprio)
    Strictly Ballroom
    The Counterfeiter
    Star Wars Episode IV
    The First Grader
    Monsoon Wedding
    Sunshine (Ralph Fiennes playing father, son, and grandson)
    The Magdalen Sisters
    Rabbit Proof Fence
    spotlight
    the great escape
    north by northwest
    Hugo
    A Separation
    The Lunch Box
    Pretty much anything with Daniel Day-Lewis.

    Tremors.
    Lone Star. The Crying Game
    Tunes of Glory.
    zorba the greek
    I Know Where I’m Going
    Local Hero
    Cold Comfort Farm
    Shipping News
    Midnight in Paris
    Tampopo
    Cosi
    Oh Brother Where Art Thou
    Big Night
    Time Bandits
    Silent Running
    Buckaroo Banzaii

    The Grey Fox and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, or
    That Thing You Do and Almost Famous
    Paris, Texas and Little Miss Sunshine
    Manhattan and Annie Hall or Sleeper

    diva
    ronan
    bullets over broadway
    fiddler on the roof
    koyla
    room

    The Night They Raided Minskys
    Pocketful of miracles

    All That Jazz’
    Up
    Wall-E
    The Mission
    American Beauty
    All That Jazz
    Ratatouille

    harvey

    Liked by 1 person

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