When it comes to Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck, together again for some time now, there remains a lot of questions, especially around how they found each other again all those months ago. Basically: What happened? Who made the first move? There was that fascinating quote in InStyle from him about her: “Where are you keeping the fountain of youth? Why do you look the same as you did in 2003 and it kind of looks like I’m in my 40s…at best?” Was it that cover story that did it? Did it provide an arena upon which to try again? Or was it some different situation? Something less industry-y? A re-meet-cute at a small independently owned bookstore just outside of Santa Monica—they both reach for the same book (The Rules: Time-Tested Secrets for Capturing the Heart of Mr. Right)? Or J.Lo, who wanted to drive herself for once, blew a tire on some random street in Miami, but, not to worry, here comes Ben Affleck, who happens to also be in the city and also had a spare in the trunk? How did it all go down?
Affleck isn’t telling, unfortunately. When interviewer Michael Hainey asked the actor for WSJ. Magazine, Affleck says, essentially, Wow, wouldn’t you like to know?
“It is a good story. It’s a great story. And, you know, maybe one day I’ll tell it. I’ll write it all out. [Pauses] And then I’ll light it on fire,” he said, laughing. The author does not add if that laugh is good-natured or maniacal. Affleck also said, “I can say that it’s definitely beautiful to me.”
He speaks of their rekindling romance in equally lovely terms:
I am very lucky in my life in that I have benefited from second chances, and I am aware that other people don’t even get first chances. I’ve had second chances in my career. I’ve had second chances as a human being. Life is difficult, and we are always failing and hopefully learning from those failures. The one thing you really need to avail yourself of the opportunities provided from that growth is the second chance. I’ve definitely tried to take advantage of that. I haven’t always been successful, but in cases in which I have, they’ve turned out to be the defining aspects of my life. But tell your wife to imagine the best story, and I’m sure that’s the true version.
Hainey had mentioned his wife wondered who called whom first. But isn’t that a wonderful gift Affleck has given us in lieu of the story? Their relationship becomes an exercise in our capacity for imagination. And yet. No. Well. I want to respect Ben and Jen and their round two of love. But also, the story! It would be so fun to know. This heartening tale of second chances, and love rekindled. Actually, never mind. I don’t even need nor want it! I’m fine without it! I will simply imagine the best story and that will be enough! You win, Affleck!
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