Last week, my cousin was in the path of the hurricane, and this week, my brother is in Irma's path! As I thought about him, my mind took me all the way back to the Stone Age when we were kids, and the "Good Humor" man was the guy who drove the musical truck that sold ice cream bars on a sultry southern summer afternoon.
ASIDE: Obviously that was the beginning of my belief that ice cream makes everything better, but right now, I don't think there's enough ice cream in the world to make it better for the millions in Mexico, the Caribbean, and the U.S. who have suffered, and are about to suffer, the devastating effects of two hurricanes and an earthquake on their homes and the infrastructure of their towns. I pray that everyone in jeopardy finds safe shelter.
Over time, "The Good Humor Man" developed a more malevolent meaning than that of a good-natured ice cream purveyor. Zack, who is both sinister and charming fits the bill. From the beginning of our acquaintance with him, he's seemed pleasant, intelligent, and easygoing, but once or twice, we saw that undercurrent of violence lurking just below the surface, but no longer. The veneer was peeled off when Zack spoke to Crystal and then told Alice to move Crystal. It surfaced again briefly with Abby. I think that Zack is going to be one very bad dude. I also think that he has a boss or partner that we haven't seen yet, perhaps even the repugnant Benjamin Hochman.
Zack will probably end up taking Abby hostage -- once she realizes that she's been duped -- and hurting Abby in some way that will require Scott to ride to her rescue. Nick and Sharon are busy bonding for their next connection, potentially when Nick finds out that Christian is not his and that Chelsea has known it all along. I anticipate that Victor will use that information if Nick tries to keep Victor away from Christian. I don't mind. I always loved Nick and Sharon together in the long ago time before she became crazy. Now that Sharon's meds have kicked in, she is normal again. It only took twenty or so years to find the right combination, but who's counting?
Once again, Tessa is acting impulsively and will further endanger Crystal. The upside will be the look on Alice's face -- priceless -- when she meets Mariah for the first time, which I hope happens next week should Mariah decide that she has to rescue Tessa. That would provide some humor for what has been, for me, a decidedly humorless summer -- therefore the question, "Where's the good humor, man?"
I miss Kevin, Chloe, Mariah, and all the funny, fast-paced barbs that flew around when they conversed. Also, on the one-year anniversary of his passing, I miss the impish, insouciant Adam. Everyone seems so heavy and troubled right now. I say again, at a time when we need it most, "Where's the good humor, man?"
While interesting, the sex trafficking story is not a pretty one, even if Sharon becomes the next "Detective Olivia Benson" for the SVU of the GCPD. Sharon would make a great cop, and it would be fun to listen to Nick list all the reasons that Sharon shouldn't! Sharon might even surpass Dylan for fastest student to complete the Police Academy.
The Newmans are no longer a happy family, either. It's mostly anger and fighting, no humor whatsoever there. Victor and Nick are feuding, and Nikki is dallying with Jack, who has family problems of his own. Neither Jack nor Ashley is happy that Dina shared confidential information about Jabot with Graham, and they are grousing not laughing.
I am beginning to think that Graham is Dina's son and will prove to be a sibling to Jack and Ashley, which is why there has been no romancing between Ashley and Graham. I think that Graham knows who he is but is keeping quiet because Dina wants it that way. I think he was given up for adoption and came back into Dina's life recently. I still think Dina has the beginning stages of Alzheimer's. What do you think? Huh?
Another sad storyline is the Cane/Lily/Juliet/Jordan fiasco. No one can win in this derivative, ridiculous, overused, "unprotected one-night stand leads to pregnancy" scenario. The best that can be hoped for is that Cane and Lily reunite after much pain and harm to the Ashby family, who will still have to get used to single mom Juliet in their lives.
I've gained a lot of respect for Lily, not only because she seems genuine and committed to doing right by her family and her marriage vows, but because she, the high-class fashion model, is the only woman in town who's wearing sensible shoes at home and at work. Even pregnant Juliet was seen scurrying up the stairs in ice pick stilettos. I do wonder why Lily gets comfortable shoes and Nikki doesn't. It seems like the higher they make Nikki's heels, the harder it is for her to stand up straight -- they throw off her center of balance or something -- plus she's older, so if anyone deserves good shoes, it's Nikki! (This message brought to you by AARP…or someone who could be a member.)
Right now, my favorite character is Hilary -- I know, I know, she's a viper -- because she's everywhere, sticking her nose into everyone's business in an absolutely shameless way that provides some dark humor. Hilary is supremely confident and extremely insecure. Her ability to be in the right place at the right time to overhear or see the most secret of secrets is uncanny, except for locating the sex traffickers -- when such a skill would be helpful. Instead, her ferreting skills mostly promote Hilary's agenda, which is always to humiliate Lily, to self-aggrandize, and to have both Devon and Jordan in her orbit.
Hilary is certainly succeeding with Devon, who seems no wiser to her tricks and is just as vulnerable to her charms as he was when he was married to her. I am glad Mariah has someone else, though I don't want to see sweet Noah's heart broken, either, but maybe it won't come to that. Again, little or no humor in these stories, though both Hilary and Mariah do land the odd jab once in a while.
Now that Hilary knows about Mattie and Reed, will she aid or hinder their budding romance? Whatever suits Hilary's purpose, I think, so I'm guessing that she will aid the teens. Personally, I think it's poor parenting to prevent them from seeing each other just because the parents have issues with each other, but what do I know? I never had children during my brief marriage, and I used protection, which, wonder of wonders, always worked for me, unlike unmarried soap opera women.
I've been rough on Cane these past weeks, but he is finally taking responsibility for his actions, and I support him. So, if he grovels to Lily awhile longer, and she forgives him, then I will also be willing to forgive and move forward. It may not go so well for Cane with Victoria, who is not so forgiving and has little sense of humor -- not to mention some kind of medical issue. Business business is different from personal business, and I do think that Cane made some very bad business decisions that cost Victoria and Brash & Sassy a lot, so I can see why she'd be ticked, and I can see why Cane thinks its not as big a deal as Victoria does. It's the difference between being the owner and the employee. If the situation had been reversed, I think Cane would have dumped Victoria in a hot minute just like Victoria did Cane.
Cane has never struck me as loyal to any of the many businesses that he has worked for in the past. A little like the larcenous Colin, I think, just like Victoria has a lot of Victor in her because, after all, she did learn business from the Mustache himself, also humorless. As far as Victoria's personal business is concerned, I have no doubt that she will use every weapon in her arsenal to reclaim Billy from Phyllis. I find that somewhat needy when she has a company to run and three children to care for. I'm glad that Johnny is finally going to kindergarten. I could be wrong, but it seems like he's been a toddler for a very long time. Maybe Victoria could fall for a nice teacher or find a househusband who would cook, clean, and care for Victoria while she took on the stress of running the business. Let Phyllis have Billy. Victoria and Billy have danced this dance before, and they always stop dancing before the music is over.
I would love to see Y&R break from the traditional male-female roles and be a little more daring -- not too much -- because I do enjoy a good rom-com where the hero rides to the rescue, as Scott will eventually do for Abby. But I also like empowered women stories, where women are treated as equals to men, instead of stereotypically, as Nick did, when he discouraged Sharon about Alice, and she bowed to his "superior?" wisdom; as Devon did, when he succumbed to Hilary's point of view and felt the need to confront and warn Jordan off Lily; and as Cane did when he dictated his daughter's friendships. Perhaps that's why I like Hilary. Even if it's wrong-headed, Hilary makes a decision and owns it.
If I had a nickel for every man who felt free to give his opinion about what I should do or how I should do it on every subject under the sun, I'd have a lot of nickels. If I had a nickel for every time I took unsolicited advice, I'd be dead broke, because, as I constantly explained in my youth, being ultimately responsible for making my own decisions is one of the perks of being single, even when, like Hilary, I may be wrong-headed. However, like Hilary, I own my actions and would never deny that I prefer being in charge of own my life rather than doing what someone else says I should do.
I have babbled on long enough, dear readers, and I need to humor myself by getting back to hurricane coverage. Expect Teddi to return next week. Your continuing prayers and well wishes for those experiencing devastating hurricane damage are appreciated. If you also want to contribute $10.00 to the Red Cross, text 90999 and the word "Irma." It helps a lot if all of us can give a little.
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