Blood and Bathtubs

by marinashifrin

Cahue: My Brazilian Neighbor

The backside of a sweaty cameraman greeted me as I stumbled out my bedroom Monday morning.

Rubbing my sleepy eyes with the hand not holding my toothbrush, I side-stepped the cameraguy hanging out of my bathroom. Curiosity got the best of me so I peaked in.

My neighbor was contorted in a strange position in the tiny bathtub. His legs were awkwardly sprawled over the edge and his head dangled limply at his chest. Blood was slowly dripping from one upturned hand onto the dirty floor.

I glanced at the clock hanging in the hallway.

This is a really inconvenient time to get murdered. I need to get to work in 30 minutes.

I crossed my arms and rolled my eyes. Just as I started tapping my foot, Cahue’s head popped up and he brightly exclaimed,

“Marrrina, Good morning. My movie, it’s in your way, no? Please come, come brush your teeth it will not bother filming.”

I loved the way his Brazilian accent rolled the R’s in my name. I couldn’t stay mad at his cheery smile. I proceeded to brush my teeth while trying to make pleasant, yet foamy, conversation with the cameraman.

Before I left, Cahue begged me to ask all the older-woman actresses I knew if they could fill in last minute for his movie. His NYU Final Film Project was due at the end of the week and the woman playing the role of his mother had to drop out. I didn’t have the heart to tell him that mature female actresses didn’t make up my inner circle in New York. All I came up with in response was, “I’ll see what I can do.”

Later in the week I bumped into Cahue. His head was shaved and he’d gotten rid of the long beard accompanying his face all summer. A friendly skin-head came to mind as I stared at his naked scalp and big smile. When I asked about the new look he explained;

“Ah yes, the film you know, yes? I decide I play all three characters: Mother, son and brother. When I play woman I can’t have the hair. You know?”

I laughed and agreed. You really can’t play a woman with the hair.

Walking to work the next day I thought about Cahue’s solution to his problem. The day before filming a script he’d worked so hard on 33% of the cast dropped out. He didn’t even let it become an issue for his grandiose plan of directing this murder film. I decided that I would save this lesson and tuck it away for when I hit my next bump in the road.

Lesson 2: Sometimes in life, the people you expect to have your back dissapear. Don’t dwell on their unreliability; just shave your beard and play the woman yourself.