It Hardly Matters

Friday, February 17, 2006


This past Valentine's Day, my date was not with some charming, attentive boyfriend or even a mildly interesting single acquaintance--it was with the television set. (No, I don't own any cats.) I had a plan, demonstrated by the following equation:

Red Wine + Olympic Speedskating =
A relatively-happy-and-somewhat-distracted-from-loneliness Mega.

An attainable goal...or so I thought. Little did I know I was about to have a Reality TV Meltdown.

I'm pretty much a reality TV whore, and will watch anything involving fat people trying to resist pyramids of glazed doughnuts, drunken college kids making out with each other in hot tubs, teenagers trying to marry off their parents, or starving yuppies battling for a coconut. But my favorite reality shows are those that pluck the fabulously talented from obscurity: Project Runway, America's Next Top Model (yeah, talented may not be the word here), and the mother of all reality shows: American Idol. So every Tuesday and Wednesday nights, I'm glued to the TV to hear every cracked note and every powerhouse rendition of "Chain of Fools". I've been known to weep when underdog-type contestants get through to the next round. I said I don't own any cats!

This year, my roommate Saint Peg and I have what's commonly known as Olympic Fever. We've been watching as much lugeing, curling, snowboarding, and skating as we can stand. Feverish as I was, on Tuesday, while purchasing my Sauvignon Blanc, I was contemplating the American snowboarding team's curious choice of pinstriped uniforms and the mystery wrapped in an enigma wrapped in a vest that is Johnny Weir. The night before, as Saint Peg and I watched the women snowboarders rip up the halfpipe, we became hungry for more competition during the commercial breaks. After a brief trip though Time Warner Cable's offerings, we decided to counterprogram with 2-minute glimpses of Pomeranians and Shiba Inus at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. Yes! We had it down: the second Bob Costas started to speak, we'd leap for the remote and press "Last Channel" and a millisecond later we were studying Rocky Balboa's Uncle Tipsy the Rottweiler's textbook gait. Counterprogramming: a thing of beauty.

Anyway, Tuesday, the plan was more of the same. Peg and I ordered pizza, and endured the final moments of women's curling, settling in to behold another night of our new reality habit, Olympic sporting events. I called my sister to remind her about the Dog Show. She had already missed the first night--tonight was the crowning of Best In Show. After my spiel, she asked, "What, no American Idol for you tonight?" Lightheaded...mouth glass very nearly dropped. I had forgotten about Idol. Everything started to go dark. I hung up and leapt to the small TV set in the other room, frantically switching channels to FOX 5. My head spun. I think I screamed. Peg laughed and started eating the pizza, while I ran from room to room in my fuzzy slippers, a whirling dervish.

After a minute or so, I caught my breath. I planted my ass in front of Idol, poured another glass of wine during the commercial break, and cried when the little skinny kid with the bad haircut sung Josh Groban's "You Raise Me Up," well, just like Josh Groban. I felt warm and fuzzy. Valentine's Day had surpassed my expectations.

I'll wrap up this whole box of chocolates with this, a paraphrase of my AM New York Horoscope dated 2/15/06: If you don't have a sweetheart, get a dog or a cat or a bird. Or a fish or even a plant.

A plant.


  • Try Lisa Loeb's new reality show - #1 Single. She seems to have luck meeting guys at those dog parks they have there in the Big City!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:49 PM  

  • Beware of that lisa loeb show. I've seen clips of her bare ass as she walks around in a thong.

    I feel like I can safely admit here that I have a secret reality TV addiction as well.

    Beauty and the Geek is my shit!

    By Anonymous Jason Justice, at 2:49 PM  

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