I'm pseudowatching Telefutura. They announce they will soon be replaying a pretty good telenovela, with some ridiculously good-looking people.
I don't usually watch Telefutura –Univisión's little sister channel. But there is something about being out here, out west in California and hanging out with Rev. Mom and knowing that we're floating somewhere three hours in the past, behind everyone else and putting the world to bed, that makes it okay to be lingering long and watching people bursting into tears inexplicably and at regular intervals.
There is something in the air here that is hard to define. Maybe it's the way the Pacific ocean colludes with clear, cloudless days here in the Central Coast to make the light so crisp and well-defined that you swear you can see individual leaves as they sit on the tree. It's like an HDR image.
I wish life itself could be as clear as these lovely sunny days with their high-resolution light.
I am keeping an eye on the telenovela as I write. The plot is, to be blunt, rather stupid– how can people who love each other pretend not to do so because they "want to set each other free so they can find their true love"?
But this is just the kind of circular logic that makes daytime dramas such hits: it's always refreshing to see really good-looking people doing really dumb things and making themselves cry needlessly. Somehow good looks don't assure that you'll be smart about your life's decisions, right?
And yet, there is also the pity element. You get to feel empathy for people– a luxury that can be afforded by even the most misanthropic among us.
But possibly the most important thing that one of these guilty-pleasure shows offers is perspective. Things have a beginning and and end, and you know that the better looking the character both inside and out, the better the odds that there will be a happy ending.
"Happy ending" optional.
This may be the last time my family and I get out to California in possibly a long while.
This is the place I feel most comfortable calling home in my life, and yet it hasn't been so for a while. There is something comforting here, in the light and in the windswept trees and in the crispness that cannot be found elsewhere — not even in the cool marble of the monuments of the city I presently call home.
Rev. Mom and I have been going through belongings, rolling our eyes at unexpectedly tacky finds (she's just unearthed a pink mirror etched with the words, "Your acts of caring are God's hands on earth!" appears in time to make my point) and reminiscing over books and clothes and glassware.
We need perspective.
We need the reassurance that we can have a happy ending soon, and that maybe that ending includes coming back here sooner than we think.
But suddenly all those telenovela tears over what may happen make sense. I'm not sad, exactly, but I am overwhelmed (again). And yet, it's also exciting to be in this postion– with life happening as it ought.
Stay tuned, folks.