by Kleitia Vaso

While going out of the neighborhood mini market, slightly sick and really tired, J. and I were trying to fairly and equally divide our shopping bags full of both necessary and superfluous items. As each silently attempted to simultaneously help the other one without, in the process, hurting herself, we both quickly realized that the real dilemma lied not so much in the distribution of the weight as much as the prioritizing of values; one had to carry a gigantic bag full of toilet paper and the other simply had to bear the heavier weight of more dignified items.
“Which one are you going to choose?” asked J. with an innocent tone of voice but a devilish smirk on her face and I, as per usual, chose the lighter option for the moment but the most difficult one when viewed from a long-term perspective. “I’ll take the toilet paper,” I said, sure of myself. “I knew you would choose that one,” answered J., “between weight and dignity, you renounced dignity, as expected, for the lighter load.” As a result, for me, the road was easier physically speaking but with a gnawing conscience and heavy doubt regarding my strength of character. For J., the path was harder physically but simpler, morally.

In my head, the complementary relationship between people, the most rewarding one, in my opinion, merits the title Let the Right One In, a title which, unfortunately, a Swedish director claimed before me. This memorable title belongs to an interesting but slightly unpleasant movie, usually placed under the also interesting romantic-horror category, a natural but difficult-to-accept combination of genres. The movie presents the story of an eternally pre-adolescent, genderless, vampire, who becomes friends with a boy from the neighborhood, just as lonely as he/she but physically much weaker. The vampire fiercely protects the defenseless boy who is constantly taunted and bullied by his stronger, bigger peers. As the movie gradually unfolds, the vampire’s weak companion will later replace the older man who lives and takes care of the vampire; in the beginning of the film, the viewer assumes that this man is the creature’s father, but, actually, he is the vampire’s lover who furnishes him with food, i.e. blood, sometimes even through murder. And, thus, the title slowly assumes its meaning; each party must find the one who provides what the other one is lacking. And, although, one party might be outwardly considered the winner – for instance, the vampire who is eternally fed – in this specific case and, generally, in this kind of relationship, both parties actually receive what they lack and, apparently, the pluses outweigh the minuses.

 

by Kleitia Vaso