It's Sunday night fans. Yet another weekend AAU basketball tournament has finally come to a close for me and my teen. Wineglass in hand, yellow pad at my side, uncapped blue pen lying atop it, I settle down to begin my marathon session of five days of Genoa City doings.
The VCR tape has been rewound. My bowl of popcorn is on the floor beside the bed. I have everything I need, so with an air of anticipation I press play, lean back and watch as the opening scene begins. Suddenly, the face before me distorts, the feminine voice cooing out of the TV speakers turns to a guttural growl that causes my wine glass to jerk so violently, Reisling wine soaks my summer PJs. The shock of cold wine drives me to my feet right into the bowl of popcorn, note pad going one way, bedtop remote controls flying in another. They hit the hardwood floor, the force of their arrival jolting off the battery cover on one and I can tell from the sound that one double A battery has rolled under the love seat and the other has likely been lost forever in the giant dustballs under my queen size.
But batteries are the least of my concern, because I know well the sound that has just penetrated my cranium. Because I've heard it before. Obviously, this particular tape has been used one time too many and that ominous whining sound, sort of like a mouse with its tail irretrievably caught in a trap, means it may be too late to save it.
But I leap across the room anyway, tromping on scattered popcorn and my fallen blue Uni-ball pen, which in mortal fear for its very life, rolls beneath my foot trying to escape, nearly sending me sprawling. Catching my balance just before I slam into my 25-inch, I fall to my knees, finger repeatedly poking Play, Stop, Rewind, Eject, anything to stop that high-pitched squeal. The innards of the VCR machine make ratcheting noises, trying to obey my frantic commands, but it obviously doesn't know which command to follow first. It stops, starts, tries to rewind, falters forward, then finally just spits out the tape. I grab at it, already knowing from the first touch that though the cartridge is out of danger, the tape inside it is not. I immediately try to gentle my movements, but it's far too late for that because after one last sound that sounds something like skuwerp-eeeek-shrree-squeal, the resistance is gone and off balance, I go too, my behind plopping down first, but the momentum carrying the rest of me backward until my head connects with the floor with a star-seeing thump.
Struggling to my knees, still clinging determinedly to my tape, I swipe my hair out of my eyes and straighten my glasses. I hear footsteps pounding up the stairs, and I reverse and crab-crawl backward to avoid the bedroom door that I suspect and am proven right is going to bang open. "Mom," my son yells as he looks down at me, a grin already chasing away his concern, as he sees the only injuries are to my ego. We both stare down at the VCR cartridge dangling from my hand, at the long strip of ripped and twisted tape curling from its edge.
Eyebrows climbing upward, his wry grin obviously being suppressed with a superhuman effort, my son asks matter of factly: "Young and the Restless?" trying desperately not to laugh at loud at my storm cloud face. "Grandma probably already taped over hers, huh," he says next. My ferocious glare tells him that was his second stupid question and if he valued his life it wouldn't be wise to ask a third, and since he already knew the Soap Net marathon was the day before, he wisely clammed up, slowly backed out and closed the door to give me privacy for my mourning. "Uhh, I'll bring up the broom and dustpan for that popcorn," he adds once he's safely on the other side of the door and in no danger from the useless and unwatchable tape that he knows I will fling at the door in answer. He was right.
So, fans, obviously, I won't be making any cutting comments this week about Gloria, Michael, Phyllis, Daniel, Victoria, Nikki or any other Genoa City resident. It's recaps for me which will at least give me the bare bones of what happened. That and a round of phone calls to friends and family who may or may not have an episode or two still on hand.
Until next week (when I will also tape Soapnet Saturday for backup), enjoy the comments of those fans who watched.
JM - Does anyone else remember when Victor went on his epileptic journey last year to Hope's secret farm and was told that Vic Jr. was at a sports camp? Now suddenly, he's in criminal activity overseas? How old is he supposed to be (real or soap years)? As for the Extreme Cat-Call story - I thought this was supposed to be a "national" show - as with everything else it must take place at the GCAC, tents on the BB court. GC must be the new fashion capital of the world. Where will all the residents dine/dish/sleep while the stage takes up the restaurant? And how much more of Aaaammbber (insert whine) do we have to endure. Her voice is like nails on a chalkboard and she's way too ghetto for Cane. By the way, does anyone know where I can buy some of Gloria's miracle libido solution - if we could all get our hands on that there would be happier women everywhere!
KAMAL - Nita, I love your alliterations. Hypocritical Hens. Genius! I am glad I'm not the only one in Jack's corner. I know what he did to Victor was wrong, but the payback that the Newmans and Michael have planned for him is way more intense than what he did. And what he did, I believe Victor would have done if the roles had been reversed. I mean, Victor has many a time tried to crush Jabot despite his "love" and "respect" for Ashley and John knowing full well that getting Jack through Jabot would hurt them. Please, Victor. No one feels sorry for you now. You've got NVP back, let it go. My one hope is that Jack has an ace up his sleeve regarding the info he learned from that crooked Senator about Victor. Lauren, I am through with her. She's officially a no good Fisher. Her anger at learning what Glo did and Kevin and Michael covering for her lasted 10 seconds. Yet she's still gung-ho about getting Jack? He's the bad guy? Right. Gloria needs to burn for all that she's done. If Jack is gonna pay, that woman and her hellspawn need to pay more.
LEANNE - When you call Gloria an HH for thinking J.T. should go to jail, you're forgetting that it's not her fault that Jack sent out the samples and that only she was supposed to get the rash. Ha ha! Is anyone else getting tired of Lily's holier than thou attitude? Is she surprised that her teenage husband likes looking a naked women? What men don't? I'm really done with this storyline. Also, didn't Phyllis own a percentage of NVP since the entire idea was hers? I thought I remembered once before that they couldn't just throw her out because of that? They are all being hypocrites with her. Who in the soap world hasn't used a little info they had to get someone to do something their way? Especially the Newmans! I can't believe I miss Nick. I used to hate him, but he's grown on me now that he's been with Phyllis and not the annoying Sharon. MAGGIE - RAS (rapid aging syndrome) making a comeback? I thought Victor Jr. was born in 1994 or 1995. So how is it that he's been fired from a job overseas and is now running amok? I wonder how old he'll be when and if he actually shows up in GC looking for dear old dad!
MARY R - I guess Y&R is about as good as it usually is, at least they abandoned the Nazi connection and Shyllis. I really tuned out when the Shyllis sl was on. It seems with all these soaps I get disgusted and them quit watching and eventually go back.
CABC - What's really going on? I know Phyllis is the bomb, but where's Neil? Paul? Can they get a date, or a decent s/l? If they gave some of that air-time Phyllis is getting and divided it evenly, then Y&R would rock! I guess the writers can't chew bubble gum and write at the same time, so it's Phyllis or nothing. The Baldwin Family, although not popular by many, I find them exciting and funny. After all, I've had to lower my standards for this show, so I'm not as pissed with the let down when these s/l end so poorly. LOVE Ji Min & Jill, can we keep this couple normal without adulteress affairs? Lily does not act married, has no marital chemistry with Daniel, should move back in with her daddy and continue to be daddy's little girl, cause that's how she acts. Give Daniel a real woman, someone who compliments him, because he is a great character in the making. Well, I guess the writers believe that everyone loves the Newmans. They may want to re-think that, and let someone else share that glory that they continue to give them, because they're tired and boring after all these years of having everything go their way Pleassssssssse! I'm still hoping we can get more of a balance with the characters.