For the last week or two, one storyline on General Hospital has been irritating me.
Sam and Jason discovered Alexis, once the hidden Russian love child of the Greek prince Mikos Cassadine, was forced to give up her illegitimate baby when she was sixteen, and Sam was that baby! Sam loves Jason the mobster and Jason and Sam hate Alexis, the selfish, insecure, controlling, not-listening to anyone, superior bitch lawyer.
…I know! That plotline has a z-axis. But wait! There’s more!
Jason met Sam on a balcony and a shot meant for him penetrated her back and – it’s a soap opera – she either can’t or probably can’t have babies. Oh, the humidity! Anyway, her blood won’t clot and Dr. Rick Springfield’s Son (Patrick) says Sam needs an operation Jason grants permission to do but Alexis shows up with a court order refusing permission because she’s Sam’s mother, damn it, and severing your parental rights means never having to say, “Well, she’s an adult now and can make her own decisions.” Alexis keeps talking about this and that but what she’s really saying is: MINE! MINE! MINE! AND I’M NOT SHARING! The hospital staff is sympathetic to the mobster and his scrappy gal so they trick Alexis and do surgery but, post-op, Alexis spirits the unconscious Sam off to a “facility” because Sam who lives with Jason hasn’t publicly and absolutely expressed her wishes to be with Jason –
…and I am going to lose my mind.
My relationship with my mother improved 100% after I moved out when I was 18 but 100% was not enough for the two of us to have a calm conversation for twenty years afterward. Miss Sasha wondered for years why the Grandma she adored and I were seldom in the same place; the simple explanation was I felt Miss Sasha should form her own relationships with her family members and be able to freely love the family members for whom I felt stabby-stabby murderous rage.
Wait! There’s a plot twist!
Nobody else had the same problems with Mom so until people outside the family saw that Mom was different with me than anyone else everyone thought I was crazy. Sometimes I agreed. When Miss Sasha moved to Charleston with the then-pre-Mr. Sasha, it was as if the clouds parted and my mother became a ration human in my presence and my bitey-gnashy anger cooled. What I didn’t realize was the moment my sisters and brother had children they found out that not only wasn’t I out of my mind but they needed my help dealing with Mom’s baby-related/time-mysterious control issues. No one – I mean no one – saw that coming!
And because Alexis does the same kind of “Because I said so” talking, based on reasoning with the tensile strength of used Kleenex that Mom presented every day when I was in high school – it is not rational to demand I ask to go to play practice every day for months on end, so I didn’t ask, making everyone the tiniest bit tense – the emotions come flooding back. It’s not especially fetching to say that when I see the character’s face and she draws a breath to speak, I feel the same powerlessness, the same rage and the same desire to kill myself rather than listen to another illogical word. I’m thinking I need to shut off General Hospital for a week or two, which is a shame because Luke, Robert, Holly, Anna and Tracy on an island together with pop guns, stolen jewels, and some very healthy men carrying a litter was a hoot.
Still, real life has a way of twisting storylines that would soap writers blush.
Last night, I went to Our Lady of Peace in South Brunswick for Mom’s and Tom’s Philomusica concert to keep statistics; I arrived before the other volunteers and could answer no questions because I was full of no information whatever. The choir was warming up so I sat on the floor of the vestibule and read a book Siobhan loaned me called The Stupidest Angel. This book made me bark with laughter, and eventually I had to quit reading it when during the concert I read where the town’s corrupt developer/traditional Santa says, “Eat me, you little vermin” and I couldn’t stop choking for five minutes. So I put the book away and went to help the volunteers set up a rather lavish refreshments table. My help was not so much needed, which I figured I should tell Mom about before I left.
After the concert, the choir members joined the audience in the vestibule, where I found members of the extended family, in a friends-of-the-family-all-my-life sense. They also live three blocks from my apartment, and I see them outside gardening quite often. Mom finally joins us.
Tata: So, there’s a thing I have to tell you before I leave.
Mom: What’s that?
Tata: There’s this lady who was in charge of setting up the refreshments table and I went to go help her. She was putting little cream puffs on a tray and she said, “I should have stacked them in a pyramid.” I said, “That would require caramel.” She stared at me, then she made a face.
Tata: You know, for the woot-woot-woot –
I am making the international gesture for spinning sticky sugar over a pyramid of cream puffs.
Diane, Mom, Alan: Oh!
Mom: Which lady?
Tata: Over there.
Mom: I don’t know her!
Tata: Well, that’s settled. I don’t know what she thought I was talking about. She did not find me funny! I made a perfectly legitimate croque en buche joke –
Diane: Apparently, your mom’s your target audience.
Tata: I did not see that coming…yet, the croque en buche jokes kill…Anyway, after that, she didn’t really want me standing near the food so I sat in a corner and read porn.
Mom: Did you remind Father John that a year ago today Sasha got married here?
Tata: No. Should I? Isn’t my presence tonight punishment enough?
It’s true he seems surprised.