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Someone, Someday, Will Write a Better Show

2003-10-17 - 1:10 p.m.

Tonight I will attend what will no doubt be a fabulous evening of musical deliciousness over at The House of Love (1000 S.1st, for any Austinites reading this), where the Divine Ms. Ginger Leigh will welcome back her old singing partner, Sarah Dashew, for what will be, according to everyone who ever knew Ginger back in the Ginger'n'Sarah days, a night of rock like I wouldn't believe. Hopefully, it will be the perfect ending to a week that included my favorite writer and one of my favorite singers, and a hell of a lot of work stress.

Even if Ginger and Sarah both get laryngitis, it will still be better than watching Still Clueless: The Further Adventures of Cher Horowitz.

Better known as Miss Match.

Some of you may be thinking "Now now, RRZ, Alicia Silverstone is a talented young actress who made some bad decisions, we should not assume that everything she does will be a rehash of her only real success, even if she's playing the wealthy daughter of a Los Angeles lawyer who plays matchmaker to her friends with amusing, nay, hilarious results!"

I will ignore you.

Others may be thinking, "Hey, dipshit, don't you dare compare an intelligent adaptation of a classic of English literature turned into a well-researched satire of upper-class teen mores to the latest attempt by Darren Star to photocopy the success of Sex and the City, because it is an insult to everyone from Amy Heckerling to the girl who played Amber and gave us the now immortal 'Whatever' handsign to do so."

And you're right. I'm sarong and sari.

However, I will say that, when Kate Fox (whose nickname, for everyone involved in Penn theatre between Fall 2000 and Spring 2004, is Katie, don't think I'm not already teasing our Katie Fox about this, except that our Katie Fox could out-act this one using only her left leg) was on the phone with her male best friend, who was practically comparing her to a summer's day while she remained completely oblivious, I kept waiting for a fountain to rise up behind her and for her to say "Oh my God . . . I LOVE JOSH!" This happened twice during the course of the show. The phone call, not the fountain.

As with many things that wind up annoying me, it's not so much that the show is that bad in and of itself that bothers me--it's just a lighter-and-sweeter-and-pinker-than-cotton-candy show, complete with theme song sung by Macy Gray--it's that it could have been so much better. I'll admit that when I first heard the premise, "Alicia Silverstone is a divorce lawyer by day, matchmaker by night" I thought to myself, "That'll last three episodes." However, after seeing it, I realized the potential for such a premise if you just change the name of the actor to, say, Linda Fiorentino or Cynthia Nixon, herself a Sex and the City star about to be without a show. It could even work with someone like Laura San Giacomo, who was so good before the whole Just Shoot Me thing and is no doubt looking for work. Hell, kill off Abby Lockhart on ER and let Maura Tierney go back to comedy where she belongs. Let Heathen (the ER recapper) do a guest spot on ER as the woman (probably another bipolar family member) who kills her; it will be fabulous.

Because I feel like a show about a hopeless-romantic, drop-dead gorgeous twentysomething losangelina just starting out in the divorce AND matchmaking business, wondering how the heckity heck these marriages went wrong, looking for love for herself and others, isn't a great show.

However, a show about a thirtysomething divorce attorney who's seen a lot of broken hearts who, while certainly beautiful (because God forbid a show like this, or any show, feature a woman who isn't), is also capable of looking harried and unglamorous, trying to match up friends with the awareness that sometimes great couples just can't work, and that love often is nowhere near all you need, would be a very cool show. It would be even better if she were married, so that 1) you could have Mrs. Match, or even better Ms. Match, and handle the stupid pun better, 2) you'd have someone who knows that even if you find love, you need to deal with a lot of crap to keep it going, 3) she could get more business from her husband's friends, and it would be a better source of comedy because she might be having to fix up guys she doesn't want to fix up, and 4) you could still deal with her own problems with commitment, in that she'd be paranoid about divorce and might even be thiking about, say, having a baby, which would mean that the stakes of the marriage would be higher.

Now, when I had this thought, I realized I was having it because, in the past couple of weeks, I have found out about a number of people I know becoming engaged, or getting pregnant, or giving birth, and as much as I am happy for the ones who are going into these decisions having thought things out (which is most of them), I am forced to accept the terrifying reality that I have left the relatively carefree dating scene of college and entered a world where "married" is a category, as is "married with children," and as the years go by these categories will become ever more preferrable, in the eyes of the world, to single, which is the category my ass has rested comfortably in for all but one month of my life.

Not, of course, that I can legally get married in this country, but that's another entry.

Speaking of other entries, all morning long I have been trying to think about how to finish this essay. Seriously, I got to that point before 9am, and have been writing and rewriting the ending ever since, and now I'm hungry and need to go to lunch. So I'll say this:

The feelings I get when another friend around my own age (23) tells me they are about to be married or parents are so cliched, ridiculous, conflicted, complicated that I can't even write something without making me sound horribly cliched, ridiculous, conflicted, and complicated. I am all those things, but I don't really want to cover all this in one diary entry, particularly since I haven't even written fifty of these yet. The briefest way I can put it is this: I deeply admire my friends that are entering into these life changing decisions who have made them carefully and who understand what til death do us part means, and want to honor that, or who have decided they are financially and emotionally ready to bring another person into the world. This doesn't mean I don't worry about what might happen to them, and am afraid of the moment when I will have to make these decisions, and that I will make the wrong ones, and that I won't even get to the point where I am able to because I have yet to find myself compatible with anyone for more than one evening at a time, and that people will look at me at that point and say "What went wrong?"

Before you write in and tell me I'll find Someone, Someday, be aware that I have made a vow to cut off the limbs of whoever says that to me next and then express mail them to Antarctica with a note that says, "Maybe Someone, Someday, will rescue your ass. Hope the penguins don't eat you beforehand, bihatch!"

That was a joke, because I laugh about almost of all this love stuff, even when I've got the pain-ridden chick singer on the cd played and am considering changing my friendster status from "Seeking Friends" to "Seeking Dates, LTRs." I only get pissed off when I watch shows where Alicia Silverstone thinks she can find the shortcut through all this that I and so many other people have stopped looking for, and that includes happily and not-so-happily married couples all over the world.

In other news, the sun rose in the east today. Austin is warmer than Philadelphia. If you didn't think this was funny, try, which has a really funny fairytale on it. And I am going to lunch.

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