Friday, September 2, 2011

Saying goodbye to "The Kids."

Sometimes, an event will take you by surprise. You'll feel a little too emotional about something—something which you definitely hadn't anticipated.

When McDonald's discontinued the "McDLT" back in 1991, I was floored, yet understood America's demand for a vegetable-free burger. Hey, if we want lettuce and tomato, we'll go to the freakin' Sizzler salad bar.

After leadfooted executives screeched the brakes on clear "Crystal Pepsi" in 1993, I reeled in anger and confusion. Finally, I could see exactly what I was drinking...which was absolutely nothing.

I've already discussed my aversion to change, so after ABC announced the cancellation of All My Children after its forty-one-year run, it struck me particularly hard.

The last episode is scheduled to air September 23.

I haven't even watched the show for ten years, but this king-sized kibosh, for whatever reason, hit me at the source of my life-sustaining Chi energy spring.

I kindled my romance with AMC during the summer of 1972. Erica Kane, Phoebe Tyler and Palmer Courtlandt were the prehistoric predecessors to Atari and Nintendo for a certain pre-adolescent boy. I was compelled to watch the program since it wedged itself between Joker's Wild and Let's Make a Deal, comprising the day's sole game-show free hour of television.

My burgeoning fascination with physical adult relationships was fed on a daily basis. From twelve to one, the camera panned in as closely as humanly possible on two finely coiffed heads as they savaged one another's uvulas into scar tissue.

So that was pretty cool.

A soap opera is an interesting beast; after watching for about a week, you've got most of the characters and story lines established and you can walk a away for another six months, only to re-establish your long distance relationship anew.

Such was the case with "The Kids," as the show came to be identified during my college years. What began as a closet group, much like a quilting bee or Scientology auditing session, eventually evolved into a substantial gathering huddled around a small black and white TV in my fraternity room, to catch up with Greg and Jenny, Jessie and Angie, and Tad and...whomever.

Why do I love this show so very much? Is it because it mirrors real life? Perhaps.

How often does someone just show up at my front door to confront me about my secret twin who's been robbing armored cars?

Boy, if I had a nickel.

Did my own children age twenty years in six months, like many soap opera children have been known to do?

No, but I certainly have.

Forty-one years—that's a year for every freakishly long eyebrow hair on my face. On September 23, I'll be tuning in for that final episode of All My Children.

Or else my twin will.

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