Thursday, June 5, 2014


Do I say what I want and cast my fate to the wind?
Now, here's an explanation if ever there was one
There's a wonderful little sitcom that we watch just about every evening.  It's in reruns and comes on at that time of the day when we are home, just after dinner and it usually marks the beginning and end of our nightly T.V. viewing.  The name of the show is "Modern Family".  In the twenty minutes of dialog, we follow three families, each in different phases of life, offering us a glimpse at their trials and tribulations which the writers deftly weave into stories that correspond to each other in some fashion. The father, Jay Pritchett, is often shown as the least sympathetic to his family's needs but it is he who comes through, says the right thing, and fixes their problems.  Bottom lines are met before the show ends and I often find myself seeking the parallel stories of the three sets and finding in them, series of life-lessons.  This genre is not new. It is one that has been used in the entertainment world for years and sadly, is over-used today in the reality show world.

  Do you recall a seventies show called "Family"?  I had a friend who used to write on her walls the bits of beautiful insights that she heard coming from Sada Thompson, the actress who played the wise and prolific Kate Lawrence.  She was the mother, the one we wished we all could adopt as our own or invite to our homes to speak to our children during complicated times.  She always seemed to have ex-act-ly the perfect answer and we totally disregarded the fact that those words came not with spontaneity, but as the result of hours and hours of work done by professionals behind the scenes. Sada was a great choice for the role of mother.  She knew how to land a line and she made it all seem very, very real. I recall one episode in particular when Kate had taken a teaching job and returned home after her first day.  She was tired, shaken and so in need of comfort and it was the familiar routine of cooking dinner that brought her relief.  She talked to the chicken prior to roasting it, as if it were a friend. She understood the cooking routine and knew she was about to do it well.  It was going to go far better than her first day back at work had gone.

All good entertainment aside, there are no easy answers to some of the questions that life asks.  We're humans, we make mistakes.  We stay things that we live to regret and we repeat the process over and over, as if we had never ventured into that same field.  It's as if we're always walking on the beach before the season starts, heading into the wind, freezing.  The lifeguards are never on duty.  If we're fortunate, we have a Jay Pritchett or a Kate Lawrence waiting in the parking lot, ready to wrap a blanket around us after we've fallen into the water. Most often, we do not and so we go right back to the beach, head into the wind, and keep right on walking.

Life is anything but a reality show.  Life is a reality and families are the realist of the reals.  At the end of the day, they bring us answers and deliver us from all evils, allowing us to continue our lives, un-guarded but always redeemed and reeled in, no matter how far we've walked.

1 comment:

  1. You have certainly said a lot in this post. How nice it would be to have someone to pat us on the back and right some of our wrongs for us. I have never watched Modern Family nor do I remember Family, but they both sound like good shows.

    I hope you have a wonderful weekend- xo Diana