As I was watching The Hobo Code, I was profoundly struck by the scene between Pete and Peggy in his office after they make love. Physically, it is almost perfectly echoed by the scene between them in Meditations in an Emergency.
Hobo Code: Pete & Peggy are the first ones in the office.
Meditations in an Emergency: Pete & Peggy are the last ones in the office.
Hobo: Peggy stops by Pete’s office just to offer him coffee, he invites her in.
Meditations: Peggy stops by Pete’s office just to say goodnight, he invites her in.
Hobo: Pete tries to get heartfelt with Peggy, at first she stops him, but he persists.
Meditations: Pete tries to get heartfelt with Peggy, at first she stops him and he points out that it’s always hard to talk to her, and then he persists.
In both, they sit side-by-side on a couch, facing each other, Pete leaning forward on his knees, Peggy holding herself in a more restrained way.
Hobo: As she leaves, she touches him on the head in a comforting way.
Meditations: As she leaves, she touches him on the shoulder in a comforting way.
Hobo: After Peggy is gone, Pete sits alone in his office, holding a drink.
Meditations: After Peggy is gone, Pete sits alone in his office, holding a shotgun.
These are the bookends of this relationship. In The Hobo Code, Peggy was full of longing for Pete, she was trying to find a way to extend and rely on the intimacy, while in Meditations in an Emergency, she appreciated him, was kind towards him, but was done with all that.
One more thing: In Hobo Code, a few hours after Peggy had accepted this intimacy from Pete, he rejected her with great cruelty. In Meditations, we can see that she was self-contained, that her rejecting of Pete’s love was about who she was and where she was, and not about Pete at all. Yet can we truly say that she doesn’t feel, somewhere within, where accepting Pete ultimately leads?