I don’t know what YOU did…

but on my son’s first day of kindergarten I cried like a baby.  I cried because watching him reach yet another major milestone made me think of every other milestone that would come all too quickly.  Soon he would be an adult and wouldn’t need his mom any more. At the time, it hadn’t dawned on me that he would always need his mom.  I was too focused on what the future might hold in store for my kiddo.  I was terrified, sad, hopeful while looking forward to the future.  The first day of kindergarten was wonderful for him – I’d hoped that every day after that would be just as wonderful.  It’s why I find the NYTimes article about a couple who met while dropping their children off at pre-k so shocking – and to some degree, disquieting:

Carol Anne Riddell and John Partilla met in 2006 in a pre-kindergarten classroom. They both had children attending the same Upper West Side school. They also both had spouses.

What you’ll find on further reading is that their attraction blossomed into an emotional affair, and later into a remarriage between the two of them.  With a greater than 50 percent divorce rate, that they divorced their spouses is not a shock,  it’s almost to be expected.  One of the big ‘nuggets’ in that piece is that they dragged their respective spouses into the burgeoning relationship.  That’s right, they convinced their spouses to ‘couples date’, the four of them becoming friends.  Of course, the spouses, indicated in the article, didn’t know about the deepening attraction between Riddell and Partilla.  Can you image, after the fact is revealed, remembering every time your spouse convinced you to have dinner with the other man/woman?  What would it be like to wonder if they were secretly holding hands under the table whenever you were all together?  Could you stop yourself  from wondering if they’d stolen kisses during ‘game night’, when they disappeared from the room – or some such thing?  How could you help from feeling foolish?  It would be almost impossible to not wonder if you missed clues.

One argument for dragging the spouses into that mess is that Riddell and Partilla may have been  trying to fight their mutual  attraction and by having their spouses present, they would have constant reminders of what they had to lose.   To that point it would seem to me that having no contact with the other person would be the best way to fight the attraction, but for each of us our mileage varies.

While later reports suggest that this couple regrets giving the interview about the way their relationship developed, I can’t help wondering why Partilla and Riddell aren’t speaking out about regretting something more, like how they left their respective spouses feeling and then rubbing salt in the wounds with this very public tribute to their new beginning?  If the ex-spouses are comfortable with this very public airing of what was surely a painful time in their lives, bless them.  Given Riddell’s ex husband’s response to the article, I’m thinking that “comfort” is not apt description for at least one of the two spouses:

“You could easily try to brush this off as a kind of self-evidence, a self-serving act by a couple of narcissistic people who for whatever reason have a need to try to persuade people…”  Bob Ennis

Ennis is primarily concerned about his daughter who is featured in the NYT’s article.  Who could blame the guy?

Whatever happens, I hope that the children involved survive the upheaval in tact.

I hope the spouses who found themselves on the outside find the grace to forgive and move on with their lives — each for their own sake.

“This is life”?  (read the article, you’ll get that quote).  I hope not.

Black Swan and the Big Time

I think I’m ready for the big time!  I think I can make it as a prime time, or even big screen, writer!  Take a gander, and take a pick:

HE is a former ___________ (police officer/hit man/gangster/CIA agent/FBI agent/thug/law abiding citizen) who wanted nothing more than to ___________ (forget his past, retire in peace/start a new life/raise a family), until THEY___________ (killed his wife, killed his wife and children/killed his dog/framed him for the murder of his family/took his family hostage).  Now they’ll ___________ (live to regret taking everything from him/never see him coming/ wish they’d never heard his name/die slowly and painfully).  Things will never be the same!

The only problem is that they’re too often the same.  The above scenario is the plot for:

  • The Punisher
  • Kill Bill (Female Protagonist)
  • The Brave One (Female Protagonist)
  • Max Payne
  • A Man Apart
  • Urban Justice
  • Hard to Kill
  • Out for a Kill
  • Law Abiding Citizen
  • Death Wish (1, 2, 3, and 4)
  • Last House on the Left (a modern re-imagining of ‘The Virgin Spring’)

That’s the short list.

There’s nothing Hollywood loves more than death women (or dead women and children) as the motivation behind 1- 1/2 to 2 hours of the goriest, scariest, vilest deathfest you can image.  Add a dead pet (furbaby) and you’re GOLDEN! I haven’t even included the films that lead to revenge due to the death of an old friend.

It’s why I’m making a pitch for films like ‘Black Swan’.  Destruction doesn’t always come at the end of a bullet or from sharp edges.  It’s sometimes quiet and calm.  It smiles and embraces you.  It’s the destruction we’ve openly  welcomed into our hearts and homes and it’s every bit as dangerous as the blood and gore found in revenge films.  You’ve probably already read the synopsis for “Black Swan” – sweet and innocent Nina auditions for the role of the Swan Queen only to find out that she’s considered “too innocent” to play both the “White Swan” and the seductive “Black Swan”.   Lily, Nina’s understudy for the role, helps her find her ‘dark’ side by taking her out on the town and showing her  a good time.  At times, Nina can’t tell if Lily is real or if she’s nothing more than a being she’s constructed to help her find her inner black swan.  The movie going audience may, at times, end up just as confused as Nina.

Why does  Lily continue to show up at just the right time?  Is she trying to help Nina, or clear the path for her own ascent as the Swan Queen?  Mila Kunis’ performance will make you forget about her ‘Meg Griffin’ and ‘Jackie Burkhart’ roles.  It’s hard to believe that Kunis’ Lily is portrayed by the same actress – this role makes it evident that Kunis has an impressive range.  Portman, as always delivers a solid and engaging performance.  To say anything more constitute gushing over Portman’s incredible work.   With many films I find myself wondering if casting did it’s job and found just the right people and put them in just the right roles.  Not this time, the casting is on point.

There will be other days to catch films about avenging the deaths of beloved family members and furbabies.  This box office moment should belong to “Black Swan”.  It’s a psychological thriller that gives from the moment the film opens until it closes … Still not convinced?  FINE!  There’s nakedness, too!  How’s that?

Why I no longer blog about soaps

Hello, all.  If you’re still reading this blog and occasionally checking it, I owe you a huge apology.  I just reviewed the blog posting  calendar and it seems that I haven’t updated since August.  Time flies when you’re having fun… not watching soaps –  which is why I haven’t been blogging… I’m just not watching the stuff.  I quit the day I realized that I had to strain to find something positive to say about daytime.

Coming up with a decent comment about daytime is the equivalent of fishing a diamond ring out of a dirty toilet bowl.  Oh sure, you know that if you find the diamond there’s a huge payoff, but is it really worth having to dig around in crap to find a hidden gem?  I don’t think so.  No one is that desperate.  Just find a replacement!  That’s what i did.  Daytime?  DONE!  I hope those of you who love the genre are still enjoying it.  I’m moving on to other things.  And hey, sorry about the toilet bowl humor.  It’s just the mood I’m in when I discuss daytime soaps.

I plan to continue blogging, but about anything and everything (everything but daytime that is).

To DOOL writers – Eat it for making me wait too long for Sami and Rafe.  I was done when Sami shot Ej and then had to pretend they were still in love to help him through his injury.  Only in daytime do writers try to make heroes and love interests out of rapists.  Every other genre uses good men and women to hunt rapists down and put them in prison.  The world grew up, daytime stayed the same.

TO BnB writers/producers/directors: – LOOOOONG done with you, folks.  By the time Brooke and Oliver were sexing up the wall, I was deprogramming the timer.  Thanks for the extra half hour.  I’ve put it to good use.

T0 YnR writers/producers/directors:  Has anyone affiliated with the current regime ever thought of ways of trying to make characters like Adam, Phyllis, Lily, Chance, or others interesting without having to destroy at least half of the remaining cast to make the above appear useful by comparison?

To GH writers/producers/directors: – <sigh>  All hope is lost.  I won’t even bother to tell you why GH got the kiss off from me – not that you care.  I’m pretty sure that even if you did care, it wouldn’t make a difference.  You’d continue to write, produce, and direct the exact same tripe.

To OLTL writers/producers/directors: – Rex, Todd, Kelly and her insane instant love for nuJoey after having left her son behind, the pregnant Buchanan sisters, The Ford brothers and their parents,  John McBain, etc, etc, etc.

To AMC writers/producers/directors:  There is just not enough bandwidth to cover your issues.  Your love for Ryan (and Greenlee) is akin to GH’s obsession with Sonny… You’re the duller sleep producing version of GH in my opinion.  I’m falling asleep just thinking about you.

All I can say is that I feel FREE, and refuse to go back.

Readers and friends, see you around and thanks to all of you who made this blogspot your home for so long.  If you’re interested in something other than daytime, I hope to see you around again, soon.