In the predictable and consistent space of Thanksgiving, we created our own camaraderie, a sense of togetherness that we solidified from year to year.

Whatever the case may be in the Chinese production of black-market DVDs, my companion friendship-harpooned my fantasies that night and forever: instead of inhabiting glamor, I was the same old me, with my hopes of a night spent canoodling and dissecting a thought-provoking foreign film burning a hole in my bag.