So, as you know, I’ve been jilted, once again, by a man. Although crazy artists do occasionally provide the boost needed during the work day, I find I need something stronger to really handle my emotional scandal once I’m away from the distractions of the plantation. Oftentimes this is some sort of documentary on Discovery Health, where I can watch everyday people suffer unspeakable tragedies and display the triumph of the human spirit.
I realized the effect these documentaries had on me many moons ago, when I was watching the special “I Eat 30,000 Calories a Day,” which followed 3 morbidly obese people as they consumed more food than it seemed humanly possible. Each segment reached its crescendo when the omniscient director would place all the food the person ate in a given day on one table, so they could really see how much they were taking in.
“I guess do eat a lot.” Said one British woman matter-of-factly.
Yes. Yes, you do.
Lately, Discovery Health hasn’t been doing it for me, and last weekend I needed a fix to get through the dark times.
That’s when I discovered the National Geographic Channel—or “Nat Geo” as they like to call it—where they aren’t afraid to go to the far reaches of the third world and beyond to bring you images of terrifying and captivating deformities. These tales of genetic anomalies are most effective for silencing my tears, for nothing really helps you put petty crap in perspective like seeing an Indian girl who was born with 8 limbs (I HEART LAKSHMI).
I learned the story of Lakshmi last Sunday night, when I was only able to fall asleep after watching “The Girl With 8 Limbs,” followed by “The Science of Dwarfism,” and then “The Science of Gigantism.” (Watching the gigantism doc actually made me feel somewhat better, as I realized it was possible for a glass of milk to be too tall.) As I stared at the television, transfixed, I felt a spark of hope as the Indian doctors took on this groundbreaking surgery. When Lakshmi survived—with only 4 LIMBS—I knew that all was right in the world, even if I was destined to die alone.
The magical effect of this programming is potent, but not long-lasting, and over the last two days, I’ve been in need of another hit. Unfortunately, every time I check the program listings, it’s just stuff about “cooking light” and “people who get kidnapped while vacationing overseas”—bor-ing! I quickly changed the channel to Showtime so I could watch Dexter On Demand. Because, when all else fails, nothing lifts the mood like watching an hour-long drama about a serial killer who makes other serial killers his victims.
I started watching Dexter for the first time about 3 weeks ago, when I stayed in on a sunny Memorial Day and ended up watching 7 episodes in a row. For some reason, getting into the mind of a psychopath was riveting, and that Michael C. Hall is no slouch to look at—even when he’s killing. He really shows the seedy underbelly of everyone, and after a couple of episodes, I kinda start to get where he’s coming from. (Apparently, my therapist thinks this is a “red flag”—to me, it’s a sign of fine screenwriting)
I started season 2 a couple of weeks ago, and came home last night ready to dig back into the show—and take my mind off of things. However, when I went to the On-Demand menu, I was greeted with a site more frightening than the girl with 8 limbs: DEXTER WAS NO LONGER AVAILABLE ON DEMAND.
Um, Showtime, how the f*&% can you tell me I can watch something when I want, but then not let me watch it?! How can you suck me in with your riveting nail-biting drama and then yank it away from me before I can get closure?! How am I supposed to get through this latest rejection without you, Dexter, to tell me all humans are worthless?! HOW?!!!!
How could they both leave me at the same time?!
So, I’m going to go home to night and pray to black Jesus (hair like lamb’s wool!) that there’s some damn good documentary on Nat Geo or D-Health—I don’t know, something about a girl born with a twin inside her liver, a boy with the genetic makeup of a Labrador, or a paraplegic who climbed an ancient Mayan temple. Whatever will remind me that it’s not as bad as I think it is.
Please come back to me, Dex. I need to know how it ends. You're the only man I can trust, because....well, I know that if you didn't like me you'd kill me in a methodical manner. There's no in-between with you.