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I was born to be a parent

Posted on 17 July 2010

“I was born to be a parent.” Before that her films had been in the nature of A Nightmare on Elm Street, Dream Warriors, and – really – Prayer of the Rollerboys. “Nice parts offend me.”Right after that, Sam Shepard cast her in Far North, Diane Keaton cast her in the award-winning Wildflower, and she was in Sean Penn’s The Indian Runner and played the luckless orphan in Ethan Frome Good credibility. But True Romance was turnaround time: she says she didn’t have that much in common with Alabama, her sweet trainee hooker, but she kept the purple and leopard-skin Cadillac the director gave her anyway. Not that she found it politic to drive it around the streets herself very long. “I get a lot of heavy mail from prisons already.”She did Kathy in Tim Burton’s Ed Wood, as wife to the famously transvestite film director, and Holy Matrimony, besides a jeans ad for Armani and the innocent discovering Burma’s troubles in John Boorman’s Beyond Rangoon.

But when that came out 18 months ago people were interested as much in her marriage, to Cage, as in her movie. Yet that, again, isn’t the showbiz story it seemed to be.Word had it that the wedding was based on a two-week acquaintance. People today ask, “Are they still together, then?”, rather surprisedly. In fact, though the decision to marry was taken at short notice, theirs was an off / on eight-year courtship, during which they were both involved with other people, but kept telephoning each other to talk about marriage, half jokingly Arquette set Cage a list of tasks to complete. He had to get her J D Salinger’s autograph, which cost him $2,000, and a black orchid, for which he shelled out the price of a can of black paint and a purple orchid.When they first met, she was intimidated by his success Now there is more equality. But Arquette still talks about Cage in terms for which glowing is hardly an adequate description.

“The reason I’ve always loved Nick is his nobility.”I don’t know who made up this idea of the perfect lover who’s going to solve all your troubles, because really when you want to fall in love you should say ‘God, please send me someone with a whole new set of problems’ That’s what love is. It’s not about perfection, it’s about working your whole life towards something.”Kevin Jackson reviews ‘Flirting With Disaster’, page 15. A leisure centre where you can chill out on bean bags, lounge on colourful low-slung sofas, chat at coffee bars equipped with laptops – and they pay you? Well yes, if you’re lucky enough to get a job. For the late 20th-century office is less like a hive of industry, and more like a club, internet cafe or chic drop-in facility, replete with whispering mobile technology and attractive interior design … If that doesn’t sound like an exact description of your own workplace, take heart.

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