William Goldman had me. I mean he really had me. Completely believing, absolutely hoodwinked, downright oblivious.
I saw The Princess Bride sometime in the early 90s. I think we still have a tape of it recorded off a '93 Christmas TV special. Some time after that I read the book.
And was just blown away. For those of you who have never read this book, you're missing out on one of the greatest literary pieces ever. It's amazing. I can't pick favorite movies, songs, or books, but if I had to, you'd better believe this would probably be it. Ever since my exposure to the book, though, I've had to wonder, does Morgenstern's version really exist? I went back and forth, discussed it with friends, definitely believed it for a period, but in the end, decided inconclusively that it didn't. Still doesn't change my high opinion of this amazing book -- in fact, it heightens it.
Yesterday I went to the library to drop off my over due books (typical). While I was there I decided to pick up a few books on film making. I saw that Goldman had written a book about his adventures in film and screen play writing, and I was so delighted I got it. I was reading through it eagerly, when I read a reference to his ex-wife, Ilene.
Ilene? I thought to myself. No, that's a mistake. In the Princess Bride forward, he said his wife's name was something else... Helen, that was it. Has he been married more than once?
I read on. I came to another startling part in which Goldman talks about his two daughters. Daughters? What about his son? His son, his son, the one in the forward of the Princess Bride.
It's dawning on me... Of course Morgenstern's Princess Bride is fictional. But more than that, what I hadn't realized until now, but so is Goldman's forward. I go on to read about the conception and struggle that was the Princess Bride, and I am blown away.
This man is a genius!
I can't get enough of thinking about it. This man has completely hoodwinked me, even when I thought I knew what was going on. I really thought he had a wife Helen and a fat son and maids that changed every couple of weeks because his therapist wife scared them away with her "understanding" of their feelings. I completely bought him.
I hope there's someone else out there who also thought like me, not because I wish to feel any less foolish (which I do, I'll admit), because I want someone else to share with me this awe of Goldman's ability, and I don't think that can happen unless you too were completely fooled.
I want to tell him. I want to tell him so badly how he completely had me. Maybe when I get time, I'll write him a letter. He may find it foolish, but I think it will give him a laugh.
Besides, he deserves to be told just exactly how brilliant he really is.