" Synchromysticism:
The art of realizing meaningful coincidence in the seemingly mundane with mystical or esoteric significance."

- Jake Kotze

August 16, 2019

Do You Get By With a Little Help From Your 'Friends'?

"“Friends” ran for 10 seasons from 1994 through 2004 on NBC’s once-mighty Thursday night lineup that dominated television.
It has since been syndicated widely, but the show has found an especially receptive audience on
Netflix, where it became available in 2015.

Its popularity among the streaming set even prompted a 2016 New York magazine article,
Is ‘Friends’ Still the Most Popular Show on TV?
Whether it is or not, Netflix has decided it’s worth $100 million.
I was reading Miriam Lancewood's book 'Woman in the Wilderness' and in the chapter titled 'Civilization' Miriam and her friend/husband Peter stay at a friend's home in Wellington for a while.
This "friend" is the French jogger Celine, who I wrote about in this recent post -
Three Queens, a Women in the Wilderness and Sea-lions?
Celine was/is a cancer doctor living alone in her house in Wellington, New Zealand, and Miriam and Peter would cook her meals for when Celine returned home from long hours of working at the hospital.
Personally I've never been a fan of the TV show 'Friends', even though my ex-wife and kids would sit up and watch it, if not on TV, then on DVDs they had bought.
To me it was just a bullshit formula TV show with canned laughter and a cast of "friends" you'd like to secretly f#ck, with hot women for straight guys (like myself), hot men for straight women, spin that all the other way round for Gay people, or all of the above for Bi people's fantasies I guess.
That show just made me want to vomit more than laugh.
But hey, whatever floats your boat.
I could never work out why this show was such a smash hit with viewers, apart from what I already wrote above, but Celine's words in the book gave me a very good reason just why this show is so popular.
"'Life in the city is quite lonely without a partner or children,' she said, as she scrolled through the movies on the screen. 'I often watch romcoms. Pathetic isn't it?' She laughed. 'Watching these cushy, undemanding movies gives me the illusion of belonging. I feel I'm not so different from everyone else.'
'Really?' I said incredulously.
'Yes. Plus sometimes I just need to zone out and stop thinking about work or career.' She looked up. 'Every week I tell people they have cancer. When I save lives, my job is wonderful and rewarding. But sometimes there's nothing I can do for a patient, and that's really tragic.' She glanced at the coffee table, silent for a moment. 'Now,' she said, 'let's watch this one. I think you'll like it.'" 
No, that trailer above wasn't the movie Celine had suggested in the book.
In fact you don't find out just which movie Celine suggested, but 'Patch Adams' sprung into my mind as I read that passage, as well as a quote from Robin Williams real life experience, which I have on my side bar to this blog.
Believe me Celine sometimes the times you will feel the loneliest is in a relationship is with a partner and children.
When I would come home from work most times the kids wouldn't leave their bedrooms, because they both had a computer in their bedrooms to "talk to friends" and play games and watch TV shows and movies (their mother's brilliant idea, just because all their school friends had computers in their bedrooms) and my wife would just lay on the couch watching her shit TV shows and zone out.
If I dared to strike up a conversation with her most times she would tell me to shush in case she missed something vital in the story-line of the crap she was watching.
Then when a commercial would come on she would ask, 
"now, what were you saying?"  
Now that I've been living alone for years after the divorce I find that I'm less lonely than I was in a marriage with zombie computer aged kids.
I can full well relate to Robin Williams sentiments about loneliness in a relationship with people who don't even try to be social, and these days I see it everywhere with people on their phones 24/7.
I found this passage in the same chapter enlightening, too -
"We spent some time discussing world events, then Peter asked Celine, 'So, what are the medical concerns today
- still a pandemic is it?'
'Pandemic?' Celine looked surprised.
I laughed, as I remembered our first conversation quite well. 
'Oh, no,' said Celine. 'Don't worry about pandemic. I'd say obesity is the latest worry. People are losing the ability to take charge of what they eat and how to prepare their food. Another problem is mental health. People are working long (I nearly typed lone there instead of long:-) hours, which causes depression and burnout.'"
Back, After the Break ... LIVE?
I wonder, have things really changed all that much in 50 years?
Certainly not for the better iFeel;-)

Anyway, I gotta go, my phone is ring(go)ing:-)
Probably just some of my old IKEA workmates wanting to plan our trip to next year's Midsommar festival?-)
That should be fun, as I won't have to cook for myself and I'll be among old friends;-)

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