Friday, July 25, 2008

Today I'm a very Mary gal

Usually when I reflect on the Mary/Rhoda dynamic, I consider myself Rhoda. Overweight but underloved, messy, a guy's best bud and a girl's best friend. Oh yeah, and I'm funny.

Yet at this critical juncture, I'm feeling very … Mary.

Specifically I'm thinking of the episode where Mary breaks down and cries about having "cute" and easy-to-dismiss problems. Like when she feels awful but is told she's lucky it's "just a cold." Or that people are amused that her weight problems are about not being able to keep weight on, etc. Like her pain, her worries, just aren't as valid as everyone else's.

Right now, that's how I feel. I am reasonably happy these days. That's a good thing, isn't it? Of course there are dark clouds on my horizon. (Doesn't everyone have problems on the horizon? Isn't that just part of being an adult?)

I feel, though, that I am being penalized by one of my friends for not being more dramatic, not being stranded in more dire straits. Since April, she has regularly asked how I am, I have answered, and she has either not listened or not retained what's going on with me. For example, the fact that my old boss almost frigging died escaped her. I shot her a nervous email about our all-agency meeting regarding the rumors in the local paper, rumors that have an impact on my job security, and she never asked me what happened. The thing of it is, compared to her bigger and very real problems, the things that trouble me just aren't interesting.

Fine. She's suffering, she's overwhelmed, and simply doesn't have time for me. Completely understandable. But then don't ask how I am. It's insulting to bare my soul to someone, and realize they simply aren't listening.

And it hurts. Do you suppose that's why Mary Richards cried at the drop of a hat?

But I find him a little disturbing

This is Benjamin Bankes, the pig from Feed The Pig. This public service initiative from the Ad Council and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants has a positive message for all of us: "Money shouldn't drive your life. But neither should debt. It's time to take control." It's got tips and calculators designed to make saving for the future seem a little easier. All good, right?

Except Benjamin himself kinda weirds me out. Maybe it's his fleshy pig ears. Or the monochromatic thing he has going with his skin and suit (and, in this shot, even the wallpaper). Whatever the reason, I find this pig (shiver) a little disturbing.