‘Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’ and the Portrayal of Mental Illness

In light of the vibrant, musical TV show ‘Crazy Ex Girlfriend’ coming to an end, I thought about its positive impact associated with the portrayal of mental illness. The story of the show follows Rebecca Bunch, of whom we as an audience are supposed to identify ourselves with. She’s funny, messy, boisterous, sharp, and one of the most interesting people you would ever find. However, she is quite flawed. In many episodes, she becomes obsessed with the love interest of whom she broke up with in her teenage years, and later moved to a city in California to pursue. 

As the show flies through each season, we watch Rebecca face more issues. She’s not just overly reliant on others, but also anxious, severely emotional, and has a history ridden with abandonment, leaving her with trauma and insecurity. But what I really like about the way the show is written, is that it’s not seen as this scary, irreversible, end-all-be-all problem. Instead, her issues are portrayed as musical numbers. She regularly sees a therapist, and reflects the ups and downs of dealing with a mental disorder, which we eventually discover to be BPD (Borderline personality disorder)

It shows that those living with mental disorders aren’t too different than those that aren’t; they’re in plain sight. Many TV shows will over-simplify the effects of disorders, making the character suffering from it appear malicious, crazy, or simply just project them in a poor light. This is also part of the irony of the show’s name. We find that Rebecca isn’t really such a “crazy” ex girlfriend after all. She’s just Rebecca; she’s genuine, honest about her feelings, high-spirited, and loyal to those she loves. 

Mental Illness is commonly misrepresented in hollywood. Suicide is glamorized, illnesses are seen as an inescapable black hole, therapists are for ‘crazy people,’ the characters are overly dramatized and usually made out to be the villain. This is unfair to people who actually suffer from mental illness, and see it from a completely different perspective.

I understand the counterargument; characters dealing with mental illness in healthy ways doesn’t make for good television. Well, to that I say: watch Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, the perfect example to oppose that stance. 

It’s 2019. People living with mental illness do not deserve to be stigmatized in TV and film. It just makes it less likely that people will reach out and get help. So, here’s to supporting quality television that positively impacts mental illness; let’s hope the future of hollywood holds more of it. 

Chronicles of a Caddy: How True “Caddyshack” Portrays the Experience

I caddied for five years at a wealthy, prestigious country club. I’ve picked up a lot of life experience, as well as some golf tips (don’t get me wrong, I’m still garbage at it). The movie Caddyshack is equally timeless as it is hilariously brilliant, and I find myself relating to a lot of it. Harold Ramis, Douglas Kenney and Brian Doyle-Murray began writing this movie by basing it off of true events from personal experiences as

Musical golf bags do exist, and they’re just as obnoxious as you think

In the movie, the character Al Czervik is a zany golfer with a loud, music-blasting golf bag that’s lugged around on the caddy’s shoulder. Fun as it would seem, the sad fact is that any music played is rich old white dude music, which isn’t good at all. This excludes any bops, bangers, or jams. When I came across this experience, I had absolutely no idea how to shut the music off, and was compensated far too little for the ear torture.

The “caddy scholarship” consistently referenced in the movie actually exists

Also known as the Chick Evans Scholarship, it was founded by Charles E. Jr. or “Chick” in 1930. It’s a full ride scholarship, offering tuition and free housing at a list of state schools, mostly in the Midwest region. And damn, is it sweet.

The life advice is real

While there are always golfers that prefer not to converse and simply focus on the game, I’ll find that a good amount of people will relate what they’ve learned about college, jobs, people, and life in general to what my future plans are. After all, if they’ve obtained a pricey membership at such an upscale place, and have found success in their field. Why wouldn’t their advice be worth taking?

The ass-kissing is also real

Whether it’s co-workers in an outing with their boss, or a caddy that wants to be promoted, there are always the brown-noses (another term consistently referenced in the movie) Many work/business opportunities are on the line, and people try to fight their way to them. It’s interesting to watch.

Serious cash is tossed around like it’s nothing

Again, the country club I worked at is extremely upscale. I’d see these golfers making bets on a putt for more than my monthly tuition payments. They throw around money like it’s not a problem, because for most of them, it isn’t. The only scary part of this equation, is when they would ask me to read a putt that’s worth 2-3,000 dollars. No thank you, sir.

The caddy masters/ owners won’t take your crap

They’ve got people to impress and–no– they don’t have time to pay you right now so hang on a damn second. If you fall out of line, they won’t be nice to you. One time, my boss went off on a caddy for ten minutes because he had his feet propped up on a chair in the caddyshack. (Not the friendliest person) When it comes to rules, it’s pretty much “put up and shut up.”

The “spoiled children” of members stereotype is hilarious

There’s a program where caddies keep score for the children of members while they play a shortened round of golf. Don’t get me wrong, most of the kids are polite and fun. But occasionally, there’s a child who just wants to go home, hates everything about golf, and WILL make everyone around them pay for it.

My years as a caddy have been eventful to say the least. It’s not an easy job, and never short of any chaos. It’s taught me a lot about life. I had my last loop a few months ago. So naturally, I blasted Kenny Loggin’s “I’m Alright” as I drove off, waving to the guard at the exit for the last time. Ironically enough, my little brother just began caddying. What’s his name? Danny.

 

Comedians that Dominated their Decade 1920’s-now

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1920’s : Buster Keaton: Known for his physical, slapstick antics, Buster Keaton was the ‘stone-face’ of comedy in the new platform of film. He’s famous for seemingly impossible gags, establishing a new territory of comedy in his era. You can’t take a film class without hearing his name. He’s known for his feature films like The General and Steamboat Bill Jr.

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1930’s: Charlie Chaplin: Relying heavily on pantomime and eccentric, quirky movements to convey humor, Chaplin paved the way for experimental techniques in comedy films. He’s known for his works like Modern Times, and The Great Dictator. (Side-note: he’s also infamous for his scandalous life outside of film.)

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1940’s: Bing Crosby: Known for his life in comedy motion pictures, as well as music, Crosby took the entertainment industry by storm in his era. He’s known for many comedic films like Going My Way and Road to Bali, especially when he was starring on the silver screen with classic comedian, Bob Hope.

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1950’s: Jerry Lewis: As the Paramount comedy star, and former duo member with Dean Martin, Lewis was a thriving entertainer of the 1950’s and beyond. Creating and starring in a plethora of comedy films, as well as being known for his quick improvisational humor on The Martin and Lewis Show on the radio, Lewis seemed unstoppable in his career endeavors. He went on to pursue a solo career, and later directed many films like The Bellboy and The Ladies Man.

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1960’s Joan Rivers: One of, or if not the most famous female comedian of all time, Joan Rivers was outspoken, fearless, and hilarious in her glory days of comedy. She pioneered comedy for females, as she was the first female late night television host and paved the way for stand up, igniting laughter with shocking comedy, insults, and witty observation.

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1970’s Rodney Dangerfield: Known as one of the greatest names in comedy, Dangerfield has mastered film, stand up, and simply being a hilarious person all around. If you’ve ever heard the phrase ‘I don’t get no respect!,’ you know who to thank. With stand up specials, No Respect and Back to School, and classic comedy films like Caddyshack and Easy Money, and hundreds of witty one-liners, it’s easy to see how Dangerfield rose to the top.

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1980’s: Robin Williams: Ah, the man himself, whom we all miss dearly. Williams’ comedic talents of improvisation, mastering impressions and voices, televised comedy and classic comedy films, is famously loved by many. Appealing to practically any audience, his legacy of comedy wins him a place as one of the greatest. Need there be a further explanation? 

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1990’s: Jerry Seinfeld: What is the deal with him? Inventing the best of sitcom comedy, Jerry Seinfeld is quite literally known as the ‘king of comedy’ by many. Exuding confidence, wit, and an expertise knowledge of humor, he’s the creator of one of the most famous, long-running comedy series. His stand-up specials and screenwriting skills have made him one of the biggest names in comedy. 

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2000’s: Dave Chappelle: Relaxed, philosophical, clever and brilliantly hilarious–Chappelle takes on broad topics in stand up from politics to sex and drugs, and many more. Creating the Chappelle Show, Half-Baked, and The Dave Chappelle Project as well as hilarious stand-up specials like For What It’s Worth, and Killin’ Them Softly. He’s known by many as one of the greatest names in the history of comedy.

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2010’s: John Mulaney: Taking the comedy scene by storm, Mulaney has created three successful stand-up specials (New in Town, The Comeback Kid, and Kid Gorgeous) undertook years writing for SNL, and co-created a new type of cartoon comedy on TV animation, Big Mouth. His aura of gentle, story-telling politeness is part of what ropes each audience in to roaring laughter. His talent in sketch comedy, self-deprecating nature, and surreal humor, are all what make him one of the current top names in comedy today.

 

 

 

An Angry Letter: Baby Boomer Edition

Dear Costco Customer Services and Management,

I’m writing today because I am extremely upset by the terrible service I received by one of your staff members earlier this afternoon.

The young, barely 17 year old cashier will rot in eternal hell for not providing me every damn thing I need. I was SIMPLY trying to make a purchase of 43 items, and return 56 items. When I tried to return the Aveeno lotion that I had used to its full proximity, the cashier, and I still cannot believe this, said ‘no.’ What, like a seventeen year old snowflake is going to tell me no? I don’t think so. So what’s mama’s next move? Calling the manager.

The manager came over, looked at the lotion and said that it “could not be returned whatsoever.” So, after screaming at the top of my lungs and waving my jiggly arms in their faces for a good ten minutes, I calmly settled and had the rest of my items sold.

As I tapped my poorly molded french manicured acrylics on the counter, I watched as coupon upon coupon scanned through the register. Then suddenly one coupon wouldn’t go through, as it was “not a Costco coupon, this is for TJ Maxx, ma’am.” Mmm, trying to play me as a fool? Not today, you’re not. I demanded for it to be put through at top volume, as the tiny, fragile cashier tried to search for a similar coupon online. Forget it.

Then came along my final attempt at bargaining. There was only one of my size of the fringed navy cardigan left and it had a small piece of fuzz on it. That’s right, you guessed it, say it with me ladies, “damage discount!” So as I pleaded my case, that it was clearly obscene for a microscopic sized fuzzball to be stuck onto the sweater I wanted so dearly, they said that there was “nothing they could do.” Truly sickening.

So, I ended off my purchase by telling the cashier that she has no future, no skills, and can’t do the easiest job on the planet. She started crying, which I did feel a little bad for, but that will just toughen her up. Teenagers these days, huh? Such pansies. Anyways. I’m writing to ask for a free lifetime membership to Costco after this incident, as I very much deserve one. If I don’t get one, this is not the last letter you will be receiving from me.

Warm Regards,

Your Least Favorite Baby Boomer

 

Inside Small-Town Tennessee’s Child Pageant Headquarters

Buckle in for the inside scoop to the beauty queen prepping process! What’s the magical secret to making these seven year old children look like Nicole Richie’s voodoo doll army? Let’s dive right in.

Let’s start with the foundation, the basics. The tan, sun-kissed glow is vital to winning trophies for these youngsters. So, every hour hired interns are paid to scrape the bronzy dust off of hot cheetos and doritos. The remains are added to the “little goddess dunk-buckets” and you guessed it! The children are dunked. Here we have little Anne Marie, taking in that beautiful glow right now. How are you feeling, Anne Marie?

Its stinging! I think I’m awwergic, wady, pwease hewp me–

How cute! Little Anne Marie! Next up, it’s hair time. This next room is designated specifically for extensions, curls and smiles! Here, we have the famous French stylist, Jean-Revatio. How do help these girls achieve perfect locks for the pageant on such a short budget, Jean-Revatio?

Budget cuts… zey have not been easy, see. But ze process, it is simple. We hand scissors to ze gals, along vith zeir beloved, how you say, american girl dolls, and we say, chop chop! No more pretty bangs on zee dolly, zey belong to you now.

Oh. There’s no better way to provide extensions?

Not if zey want to lose ze pageant and waste all of mommy’s money.

That checks out. Moving on, we’re going to take a gander at the runway. As stated before, money is tight here. So, with that stated, the runway is compiled of cardboard slats and boxes. There have been many complaints, and even more sprained ankles. Taking a look at this box in particular, it appears to be moving! I’m confused! Oh, would you look at that. There’s a man insi–

Who’s waking me up from ma nap? I paid rent on this here box, and you millenials had to go ahead and tow it.

Good luck with that, I’m leaving. And now, a producer is approaching me! Hi, sir! What? Why are you whispering? Oh… Okay. Understood.  

Well, folks, I have just been paid a time share in Honolulu sized amount of hush money to stop all continuation of the production of this documentary. Thanks for watching! Don’t forget to tune in next week on, “Sashes and Sales: Girl Scouts taking over Compton”

 

How to be the Worst Vegan in the Universe

~A step by step guide on how to screw up this lifestyle entirely ~

Live on sugary snacks

Now, to be a terrible vegan, you have to get most of your calories from nature valley bars, medium fries, taco bell cinnamon twists, and oreos. Vegetables exist, yes, but are they important? I just laughed. Vegetables who? What is that, if someone could comment below and let me know, I’d appreciate it. Am I even pronouncing that right? Velcro tables?

Don’t eat!

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Okay. So you’re out with the gals. Alyssa just ordered a jumbo cheese pizza for the table, and Tiffany already had the check split. You could’ve packed a quinoa salad beforehand, checked the menu for vegan items before agreeing to go out, or dropped that piece of shit friend group in the first place–but that’s crazy! Just. Don’t. Eat! Hunger is an emotion! Just don’t feel it, silly! They can chow down on the cheese pizza that you’re partially paying for, just play Words With Friends or something, I don’t know, why did you agree to go to a LOU MALNATI’S.

Make everyone feel bad

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Announce that you’re vegan everywhere you go. You’re making a bank deposit? The teller looks stressed and there’s a long line? This is the perfect time to give insight into your new vegan lifestyle. Tell her about how much weight you lost. Tell her about how it would help her a lot to make the change. Oh, your cousin just announced that he’s going vegetarian? EYE ROLL. Way to half-ass it, Robert. The true heroes aren’t mouth-harassing a triple decker stack of buttermilk pancakes and cheesy garlic bread. I can’t even look at you.

Cheat days!

Yes, ladies. Every Friday during a full moon, we ride into the woods on horses. There, we are greeted by both Ben and Jerry, dousing us in fountains of chocolate swirl rocky road. We crack eggs on each others heads while swimming in the fro-yo whirlpool. Suddenly, the ground rumbles. The soil begins to break up and a giant statue emerges from the beneath. It is Paula Deen. Butter blasts out from her eyelids, her nose, HER HAIR!? PEOPLE ARE DROWNING HELP PEOPLE ARE DY–

Stick with your trusty recipes!

Don’t switch things up with your meal planning. Change is scary! Eat dry spaghetti for seven days in a row. The soy milk is expired? Too bad, Sharon. Drink it. New recipes are for communists. Eat what’s in your pantry and fridge, and change nothing. If you run out of stuff, well, that’s why we have trees.

Well, there you have it! If you sufficiently follow these steps, congrats! You will be a terrible vegan, and everyone will want you to stop. If you do the exact opposite of these steps, you’re on a good path, I promise. 

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Modern Family episode five

Synopsis: Claire brings down the head of the PTA with an iron fist, Luke and Phil search for evidence to get revenge on a classmate, Gloria tries to convince Jay that her music is superior, all the while Cam and Manny go on a wild, psychic goose-chase, just for good skin care.

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Modern Family: Episode Four

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Synopsis: In this episode, Mitchell and Cam try to learn something new for fun (but mostly safety reasons). Luke and Manny take on their new dog walking business with eagerness and innovation. The battle for the perfect dress is fought between two sisters, while a jealousy-ridden game of golf plays out between two dads. ENJOY.

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