Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Bill Murray on my Bathroom Wall

I have a shrine in my bathroom to inspiring and beautiful bits of writing. Since my space heater takes a long time to warm up the house and my toilet seat is always warm, these days I spend an inordinate amount of time reading over the clips that have achieved shrine status. The following excerpt enjoys a prime location directly above the toilet paper. It's a story about Bill Murray told by one of his old friends which appeared in a New Yorker article around a year ago.

"One of my favorite Bill Murray stories is about when he went to Bali. I'd spent three weeks there, mostly in the south, where the tourists are. But Bill rode a motorcycle into the interior until the sun went down and got totally lost. He goes into a village store, where they are very surprised to see an American tourist, and starts talking to them in English, going 'Wow! Nice hat! Hey, gimme that hat!'" Ramis's eyes were lighting up. "And he takes the guy's hat and started imitating people, entertaining. Word gets around this hamlet that there's some crazy guy at the grocery and he ended up doing a dumb show with the whole village sitting around laughing as he grabbed the women and tickled the kids. No worry about getting back to a hotel, no need for language, just his presence, and his charisma, and his courage. When you meet the hero, you sure know it."

He smiled. "Bill loves to get lost, to throw the map out the window and drive till you have no idea where you are, just to experience something new."


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