My Internet is abuzz today with the news of ABC canceling both All My Children and One Life to Live to make room for some health & food shows staring B celebrities from reality shows*.
I used to watch One Life to Live with my middle school best friend Becky, but it was never dear to me. Though I am saddened by the shrinking of our daytime soap opera family, I am ultimately just glad it wasn’t Days Of Our Lives that was canceled. Days, recently renewed by NBC for another two years, has narrowly escaped the guillotine of our media revolution. Woot woot!
Where would we, as a society, be without the convoluted and often hilarious storylines soap operas bring to our lives? Take, for instance, Philip Kiariakis’ face transpant. Continue Reading
I heard a tale of a man named Saint-Simon. Every morning his valet would wake him and say, “Arise, sir!! You have great things to do today!”
We can’t all have a valet to wake us with such inspiring words. I created this little reminder of how awesome you are out of little bits of a Soap Opera Digest. The high resolution version is below. Download it, print it out, frame it and look at it every day and smile. Or make it your desktop background!
We all deserve to be reminded of how awesome we are as often as possible. The world will conspire to bring us down– let’s work together to stay afloat!
The BP oil spill fiasco seems to have fallen off our radar a bit, though the disaster is far from over. Will tells me spills of that magnitude have happened before on other, not so affluent off-shore eco-systems. Our Earth seems to have handled it; indeed if the last one was in the seventies, we ought to know if it hadn’t.
I can’t imagine seeing in the past those sickening images of pelicans and dolphins covered in oil, and having to see them again thirty years later. Those images are forever burned in my memory, and I imagine in yours too. I toyed with the idea of doing a Van Gogh My Pet series of oil slicked creatures, but I have never enjoyed portraying sadness and despair. It’s hard to imagine that our world would recover, and it’s rather sickening to me how little we hear about the continued fallout. I (perhaps conveniently) blame the media for our short attention span.
For the past few months, I’ve been obsessed with David Bowie. OBSESSED. Initially it was one of his earliest albums, Hunky Dory, on continual repeat, which was replaced after an appropriate amount of time with his subsequent album, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars. This album is a rock and roll opera, which Bowie intended to form the backbone of a stage show or television production (and it still should be).
The first track, Five Years, relates the devastating news that Earth’s days are numbered. Finitely numbered, in fact, with only five years to go. We’ve used up all our natural resources. Adults have given up; kids are left to plunder and ravage what’s left of the Earth.
The reality in their world seemed so hauntingly similar to our current situation, and so many other environmental situations I’ve worried and fretted about. This oil spill debacle seemed to me so much bigger than anything else. People close to me suggested that this spill would ruin the Southern portion of the United States, forcing a mass migration. The oil could be displaced via hurricanes and wind up poisoning our entire water supply. Crops could fail and even the salmon swimming happily in the Klamath River would sport a shiny black coat. Even without employing my overactive imagination, people were (are) out of work, and animals are dying (still!).
My favorite of the album is the fourth track, Starman. We learn of a being, “waiting in the sky; he’d like to come and meet us but he thinks he’d blow our minds.” He knows how to help us, but is afraid we might be be unwilling to accept him or his knowledge–a valid concern. I’ve heard so many rumors of BP executives ignoring advice; as humans, we think, we feel, and we are stubborn.
Opening our ears, the Starman tells us “not to blow it cause he knows it’s all worthwhile.” A glimmer of hope! No matter how dark our reality might be, it is still worthwhile–life is still worthwhile. We still love, we can still laugh.
The Starman continues, “let the children lose it, let the children use it.” And it is so true; we are merely the stewards of our home. It is our children who will inherit it when we are gone. They have the freedom to do with it what they will, just as we have the freedom to do to it what we will. If we consider how it affects those following in our footsteps, perhaps we would take different paths.
As a Girl Scout, I have always been taught to take care of my surroundings. When I leave a camp site, I pick up as many pieces of trash as I can find–far more, indeed than I have left there. I know that the people who are camping there next will probably destroy it again, but I can only do what I can do. I think Starman would want it that way.
To honor this ambassador of hope I created this work:
I started with EJ DiMira’s body, which I cut out of Soap Opera Digest (quite an inspiration for me of late), added some images from Wikimedia Commons, and Photoshop flares to create his body. I had it printed on this crazy metallic paper that adds just the faintest glimmer to finish the piece.
Will wants me to send one to David Bowie. Julia challenged me to find his address, which ten seconds on google yielded (though I will probably only reach his publicist).
I’ve taken this as a challenge to create a triad of David Bowie inspired art, that will likely include elements from Soap Opera Digest. Once the triad is finished, and only then, will I send them to David Bowie. He has a habit of supporting unknown and budding artists. I have a daydream that perhaps one day he will have to phone someone and he will pick on me.
You may not know this about me, but I am a huge fan of Days of Our Lives. I’ve watched the show since I was in high school, and am lucky to have witnessed Marlena’s head spinning and projectile vomiting a la The Exorcist when she was possessed by the devil, numerous serial killers and that time that Jack and Jennifer pushed some guy in that vat of acid (not really clear on the details there). According to my high school boyfriend, there was a time that I gave up Days of Our Lives (!!!) but I have no memory of that.
Somewhere along the line, my father started subscribing to Soap Opera Digest for me (I think he gets them for free), which is an excellent addition to my life. It is because of this excellent addition to my life that I have this awesome gem to share with you:
You're going to want to click on this to study it more closely. Seriously.
Yes, this cat that looks like a long-haired version of the Guster is staring at a giant litter scooper in the sky. Yes, the giant litter scooper in the sky is holding a purple blob that looks like a hybrid of Meatwad and a Teletubbie giving us what might be a thumbs up.
If that cat were anything like the Guster instead of just looking a little like him, he would have run screaming. He also wouldn’t even be on the moon because he’s not really allowed outside of house, even though he’s been embarking on a few sordid outside adventures of late (part one, part two).
Yet, here this cat is, staring–seemingly in awe–at this scooper and scoop-character (I think we’re supposed to believe his name is Clumpy) in the sky.
Lots of ads are weird and random so let’s forgive this part. It turns out if you look at the lower right hand corner, this is not an ad for a movie that no one in their right minds would want to see, but an ad for Scoop Away brand cat litter. OK, it’s an ad for cat litter.
Have you ever seen a cat poop? I think that most of us have, and for those of us who haven’t, it’s a lot like a little dog poop, which is somewhat like a little human poop. It looks nothing like Meatwad, and only nominally like a Teletubbie. They are not purple, they do not have eyes, and they are not shaped like a biscuit. Is this ad telling us that if we use the Scoop Away brand cat litter (which, btw, is terrible and horrible for the environment, though nothing compared to the BP oil spill), our cat’s poops will turn into little purple biscuit-shaped poops and fly away into space? Cause that would be pretty awesome, but a rather bitter pill to swallow, if you know what I mean (or if I even know what I mean, which is that it would be hard to swallow).
It turns out, if you visit www.scoopaway.com, as this ad urges you to, there are indeed movies–almost adventures–starring Clumpy. They all have the same general story line–Clumpy stays together while his counterpart falls apart, be it while lifting weights at the gym (while flirting–mind you–with a yellow clump of cat poo), catching rays at the beach or scaling the Alps. OK, Scoop Away brand cat litter, you got me to look at your website. I stared, transfixed in horror, at these elaborate scenes you probably hope will go viral and somehow increase your hold on the demographic of soap-opera-watching-cat-loving women who all share the same general distaste for litter box cleaning. You win. I’m even helping you by drawing attention on the Internets to your misguided attempt at viral marketing. But be warned: I predict a class action lawsuit on behalf of American housewives and other soap opera addicts who will soon find themselves haunted by these smiling purple cat poops in the sky.