In between gigs, I’ve been working through The Most of Nora Ephron, a posthumous collection of Ephron’s essays, scripts, blog posts, books. Mostly I love it. Even When Harry Met Sally is less cloying on the page, and her early work is so smart and acerbic that it makes me envious of a girl she left behind long before she died. Sure, her class biases are a bummer but in her writing (less in her films) she relishes so much–and with such a crisp specificity–that her pleasure is infectious. It hits me: Imagine what this woman would have accomplished had she lived to the age she’d assumed she would. (In early pieces she blithely refers to her 80s though she died at 71.) Once she’d achieved grand dame status, she’d likely have maintained her generosity of spirit while taking off the good girl gloves that never suited her anyway. Oh, how our spines would have straightened. The lesson is there for the taking: Let none of us assume we’ll achieve a ripe old age. Everything we do may duly suffer.