just come home and promised to clean his room.
But first,—any and everything else comes first—he had to call Neal and
find out if they were still getting together to write their TV pilot.
finishing my lunch and Max was sitting nearby on the phone, expressing
disappointment and frustration that his friend would not have time to see
him. Neal was in New York with his
family to attend the “Wolf of Wall Street” premiere, in which his father had played a role. Apparently, Neal had to
leave earlier than expected for the festivities and would be flying home to LA
the next morning.
Suddenly, my son’s expression
changed. He stopped scolding Neal for
not meeting him earlier. There was a long pause. “You want me to come with you
to the premiere?” Max asked, obviously awestruck and trying to
process what was apparently a spur-of-the-moment invitation. Later I would learn that Neal’s sister was too
sick to go, so there was an extra ticket.
Neal’s mother had overheard her son’s side of the conversation and
suggested he invite Max.
My son smiled
like he’d won the lottery. “I’d LOVE to!” Max blurted, his blue eyes,
popping with excitement. “Dude, I mean
if you want me to,” he backpedaled. “That would be great.”
From my son’s expression, I could
surmise that Neal had offered him some sort of challenge. But
Max was still smiling and so was I. It
had to be about the dress code. I could
imagine Neal warning my son: “You’ll have to wear a suit, and you probably
don’t have one...” Like most young men his age, my son hated to
get dressed up. Max rarely wore anything
fancier than an untucked flannel shirt with jeans and always griped if he had
to wear a blazer—or worse still—a tie (heaven, forbid).
a suit that’s perfect.” I heard Max announce with glee. “My Uncle Andy bought
it for me to wear to the job I still don’t have.”
I thought about the elegantly tailored,
black designer suit that Andy had so generously given to Max. There was also a
beautifully tailored white shirt, skinny black tie and expensive dress shoes.
The outfit was going to be exactly right for the red carpet affair, and –for
all the same reasons— exactly wrong for an entry level job.
can’t believe I might be going to meet Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin
Scorsese! Do you think I sounded too
excited?” My son asked, ever afraid of sounding uncool.
could you NOT be excited?” I enthused. “Your
friend’s life is filled with famous people.
For him this is just another family obligation. For you, it’s a unique experience.” I knew
I’d be excited if I could meet Leo DiCaprio. And who knew how many other handsome men
might be attending this premiere? I had
to make sure Max looked his best.
It was a mad race to plow through the mess in
Max’s room to assemble his outfit.
First, the shirt was MIA. After
rummaging through a mountain of laundry, Max extracted the lovely-but-wrinkled
Dolce & Gabbana.
I wear it anyway? Maybe we should try to
iron it.” My son wondered aloud.
would mean looking for the iron first.”
I couldn’t help smiling. “Even if
I manage to unearth it, I’m not very good at ironing, and you’ve never ironed
in your life.”
the ironing board.” He persisted. “It can’t be that hard.” His lovely, square
jaw was thrust forward with that same, stubborn, devil-may care attitude he’d
had as a boy.
me, you don’t want to burn a hole in that Dolce & Gabbana shirt or arrive
looking wrinkled and disheveled at the premiere. Borrow a shirt from Dad.” I handed my son his father’s shirt, only slightly
short in the sleeves and tight in the neck, but Brook’s Brothers, white, crisp
and clean. “Wear this.”
have to shave?” Max studied his face in the mirror. “I already have razor burn from shaving
smiled, knowing Henry would be horrified if his son didn’t shave for this
event. Henry believed Max should shave
every day to be well-groomed. “How about
if we touch it up a little?” I offered as a compromise. “Here, let me. “ I took the razor and gently went over the
area above his pouting lips and around the mole under his left ear, where he
always left a patch of stubble
struggled with the tie. “I’m terrible
at this,” he complained. The knot was
crooked, and the tie was askew.
take your time.” I buttoned the collar
and pushed the back of the tie underneath.
three or four attempts, the tie looked reasonable. Maybe a beautiful actress would come over
and fix it for him later.
only I’d had time for a haircut,” Max lamented. He layered on mousse in an
attempt to push back the long hanks of brown hair that kept flopping
“Do I look okay? Please tell me I don’t look like a greaser.”
"You look stunning. And I’m not just saying that because I’m your
Mom.” Even if his bedroom looked like a slum
hit by a hurricane, my son was capable of transforming himself into a
strikingly handsome young man. Max was
6’1,” 180 pounds with pale denim-blue eyes framed by dark eyebrows and
hair. Some people said he looked like a
young, Nicolas Cage.
don’t have a dress coat,” he fretted.
coat doesn’t matter,” I reassured him. “It’s snowing, and you’ll take it
off.” I dug out Henry’s old black parka,
which looked infinitely better than my son’s stained, khaki down jacket. “I bet you’ll meet at least one beautiful
once in his life, Max left early,
allotting an hour and a half to get to his friend’s house. He wasn’t taking any chances on being late
for the premiere. Plus he had the best
excuse ever to postpone cleaning his room.
“Have fun.” I waved. Watching him eagerly depart in Dolce &
Gabbana, I couldn’t help thinking my son was as handsome as any movie star he might meet.
Labels: Dolce & Gabbana, entry level jobs, film screenings, Leonardo DiCaprio, Martin Scorsese, movie premiere, movie stars, Nicolas Cage, The Wolf of Wall Street, TV pilots