Sunday, 4 May 2008

Martin Sheen's Marriage

OK, blogging every day means that certain things don't stay top of the page for long. So if you're looking for wank fodder press here. I probably could write about sex nearly every day but then we'd all get a bit bored so let's open our minds to some other considerations.

Martin Sheen is the quintessential US President. As Josiah (Jed) Bartlett, he portrayed the Leader of the Free World as a man of integrity and morals. He showed us the difficult choices that had to be made and helped us see the true path. If only it were like that in the real world. Apparently, Bill Clinton was a great fan but George Dubya wasn't anywhere near so keen.

He also had the sexiest way of putting on a suit jacket that I have ever seen - by flipping it over his head. Apparently this is because his left arm was crushed by forceps when he was born and he has limited lateral movement.

Besides being the father of several famous acting children, Martin is a political activist who is prepared to stand up for what he believes in by attending rallies and protesting. He recounts the story where there was a strong possibility that he might actually be sent to jail for one civil disorder offence that occurred whilst he was still involved with filming the West Wing. His lawyer persuaded him that the resulting controversy might have more widespread implications so it was plea bargained to three years' probation.

I have seen him on various talk shows and his self-deprecating sense of humour and genuine personality make him a joy to watch. This week he was on Graham Norton Uncut and, besides brilliantly replicating an unscripted 'walk and talk' scene from the West Wing, working the onlookers and pressing the flesh with the audience in true Presidential style, he said something which really struck a chord with me. He was talking about keeping the romance alive with his wife of 47 years - he got married in the year that I was born.

My wife keeps me honest.

As you get older your idea of romance changes.

We do still bother (with romance) but the ideal kind of way to go into a marriage is that you'll promise that person that you'll help them become themselves at all costs.

So you'll tell them the whole truth and nothing but the truth at all times and most of the time you'll be the only person that will. You have to love each other enough to risk their wrath by telling them the truth.

Graham Norton added the proviso: 'But you also have to be careful what questions you ask' :)

And there's also another level. People talk about happiness. They say: 'this makes me happy, I'm as happy as Larry' but they rarely talk about joy.

That's the thing that transcends the whole relationship - the element of joy and with gratitude and praise that the other person has allowed you to experience real joy.

I agreed with Graham Norton - that could be one of the most profound things I have ever heard on a talk show.

Blogging Every Day In May



Phil said...

I don't know what to say about Martin Estevez. I just stopped in to say Hi!

Lady in red said...

I don't watch an awful lot of TV but I did see this and I was captivated by his interview.

BenefitScroungingScum said...

I didn't see this, so thank you for a fantastic quote, BG

having my cake said...

Phil - Hi! x

LiR - Im so glad I was not alone in enjoying it.

BG - You're welcome. It might just still be available on iPlayer.

Vi said...

If only we could all have relationships like that!

Brian said...

I'm a fan too, loved the West Wing. Apocalypse Now is one of my favourite films he was excellent in it. I highly recommend Hearts of Darkness which is a 'making of' documentary of the film. Martin Sheen had a heart attack during the filming and he recounts it honestly.
Possibly the best 'making of' doc you will ever see.

I must look for this interview on the web.


Confessor X said...

Heart of Darkness was also a book, which inspired the movie Apoc. Now. But youre right, its a great "making of" movie aswell. Marty Sheen did a wonderful job in "The American President" ... which was the inspiration for the "West Wing" series...

Anonymous said...

I love Graham Norton. And I love the sentiment of this post :)

having my cake said...

Vi - I know, it made me so envious

Brian - MS referred to his health problems during the filming of Apocalypse Now during the interview. Apparently Francis Ford Coppola said something to the effect of 'You dont die til I say you can die'

Confessor X - The American President is one of my favourite films.

BC - Ive always enjoyed Graham's shows too. He does seem to bring out the best in a lot of the actors that you imagine to be more uptight. After Parkinson's experience with Meg Ryan, I wonder if Graham has tried to interview her.

Redhead Editor said...

Wow, happiness vs. joy. Much to think on.

And I would have voted for Martin Sheen for president any day. Too bad he never ran.

Anonymous said...

That's actually a really lovely statement. I idolised him as Jed Bartlet on the West Wing, nice to see he's an insightful man in real life, too!