How can I begin to tell you about Chaz? She fills my horizon, she is the great fact of my life, she has my love, she saved me from the fate of living out my life alone, which is where I seemed to be heading. If my cancer had come, and it would have, and Chaz had not been there with me, I can imagine a descent into lonely decrepitude. I was very sick. I might have vegetated in hopelessness. This woman never lost her love, and when it was necessary she forced me to want to live. She was always there believing I could do it, and her love was like a wind forcing me back from the grave.Does that sound too dramatic? You were not there.
We like to tell people we were “introduced by Ann Landers,” which is technically true, although Eppie Lederer didn’t know her at the time. The night I took Eppie to an open AA meeting, we decided to go out to dinner together afterwards; this was the first and only time we ever had dinner for two. In the restaurant, Chaz was at a nearby table that included a couple of people I knew. I didn’t know her, but I’d seen her before and was attracted. I liked her looks, her voluptuous figure, and the way she presented herself. She took a lot of care with her appearance and her clothes never looked quickly thrown together. She seemed to be holding the attention of her table. You never get anywhere with a woman you can’t talk intelligently with.
At Cannes we bought a chicken sandwich for Quentin Tarantino in a beach restaurant, after “Reservoir Dogs” had been a success but he was broke. The next time we saw him at Cannes was after “Pulp Fiction,” when Miramax had rented a ballroom in the Carlton for him. It was the first time we remembered. Another night, after seeing “Boys N the Hood” and being awed by it, we drove out of town for dinner with John Singleton, so young and filled with plans. Chaz seemed to know everybody and to remember all the names; I had often been more abstracted than anyone realized.