Friday, December 21, 2001

"Romy and Michelle's High School Reunion" was on ZTV here in Sweden last night, and I'd forgotten the whole "I'm the Mary and you're the Rhoda" shtick, which I really relate to, and which probably really dates me.

I remember watching that show every Saturday night - or was it Friday? - from the time I was about 9 years old until I was 14. By that time, the old Saturday-night lineup - first "All in the Family," then "The Mary Tyler Moore Show," then "The Bob Newhart Show" and finally "The Carol Burnett Show" - had lost its shine and the original "Saturday Night Live" had become the thing to watch, which I did as I babysat for the same family every Saturday, their strange children asleep in their beds upstairs and me downstairs leafing through The Joy of Sex, worried that the parents would come home and catch me drooling over the bad seventies-style drawings of not very attractive men with beards and/or long hair having sex with women who looked like Jane Fonda (in her "Klute" shag-hairstyle days) in a wide range of positions, from the prosaic to the obscure. (They also had a rather peculiar book that I remember quite well - Transcendental Meditation for Tiny Tots - all about warm fuzzies and cold pricklies and just as oh-so-seventies as The Joy of Sex, but much more confusing. Worse, when I tried to find a link for it, there was only one source listed, a scary Christian site entitled "Combat Tactics against Satanism and the Occult: Guerilla Warfare for Young Adults." I couldn't be bothered to read the 25-page article to find out exactly where they mention this obscure book from my adolescence.)

Me, I wouldn't exactly say I'm the Rhoda, but the husband is definitely the Mary in our relationship.

The Swedish word for the day is 70-talet. It means the '70s

- by Francis S.

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