She’s Standing RIGHT Behind You
One of the side effects of my funk/depression/grieving process/whatever is that I have been watching back episodes of Gossip Girl.
Shut up. Like all you ever watch is nature shows on PBS.
I haven’t had a TV for 7 years, and it’s not because I am so above it all. Nope. It is because if I had had a TV all this time, I would have been watching crap like Gossip Girl all this time.
No teevee show is crappy enough for me not to watch. Except maybe that Honey Boo Boo horror. That’s too much even in my most brain-dead moments.
When I was a kid, I watched the soaps with my mom, but it has been about 25 years since I followed one with any regularity. Things have changed a bit – cell phones and text messages add new twists, and the characters change a LOT faster.
The type of characters who hung around for decades on All My Children are dispatched after three or four Gossip Girl episodes. Is this progress or due to shorter attention spans? I dunno.
Anyway, all of this has made me consider the conventions that make every soap opera possible. Things that rarely happen in real life, but which are necessary to keep story lines cranking along in the soaps. For instance:
- No one ever hears someone walk into a room behind them
- Everyone can clearly hear every word of a conversation at a table near them in a restaurant
- There is only one restaurant in town
- There is only one doctor in town
- No one ever says goodbye before they hang up the phone
- No one has a job that requires them to be there or stay there during regular business hours
- Every cell phone photo or video is sharp, well-framed and with perfect audio.
- People walk out of their homes, leaving others (who don’t live there) just standing there
- Secret documents ALWAYS fall out of the handbag/briefcase
- People ALWAYS walk into the room just in time to hear the incriminating end of the conversation
- The whole town goes to the same social event. The teens are eager to go to a Chamber of Commerce dinner.
- Empires rise and fall because someone doesn’t let another person finish a sentence, creating a huge misunderstanding
- People switch personalities like normal people change sweaters
- No one ever recognizes a close friend in disguise, even if the disguise is just putting on some glasses and changing hair color.
- The most common disease is amnesia.
- Pregnancies either last one month or four years.
- No one is ever really dead.