Alison Berkley: Saying goodbye to great ‘Sex’
On Sunday, Feb. 22, I sat alone in my living room and cried like someone at work on a powder day. We’re talking sobs and fat, salty tears, snots stuck all over my face like a little kid after a cold day at ski school.
No one died or broke up with me or fired me from another job. It was worse ” the final episode of “Sex and the City” aired on HBO.
I swear to god I am not the type of loser who sits around getting hooked on TV shows. Just because I’m self-employed now and can watch Oprah if I feel like it does not mean I have a problem.
I do not need structure, I am a creative. Why, in order to get in the proper frame of mind to write, I must satisfy all my distractions in advance so I can sit down and focus as soon as I get inspired.
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That requires lots of different activities to balance out the mind, like sleeping late, going to Highlands after 12 so I don’t have to pay for parking and making sure I never miss another powder day as long as me and my snowboard both shall live.
Anyhoo, my point is, “Sex” isn’t any ordinary TV show ” it speaks to me, me, me. I mean, I am so Carrie Bradshaw!
She’s a columnist, I’m a columnist. She’s a short, skinny, cute little (sometimes) blonde, I’m a “petite” (bottled) blonde with cute feet. She has her own quirky fashion sense, and I have whatever isn’t in the hamper. (Whoever said socks have to match?)
She’s a 30-something single in New York City who writes about sex and love, I’m a 30-something single in Aspen who writes about fat kids with ADD. She has her picture plastered on the side of a crosstown bus, and I made national news after getting canned from Aspen Skiing Co. over one of my columns ” so we’re both famous in a way.
What made this show so unique was its bold honesty and groundbreaking portrayal of modern female sexuality. What could be funnier than sex from a woman’s point of view?
From jack-rabbit sex (“Bam! Bam! Bam! Bam! Bam!” as Carrie put it) and bad-tasting sperm to small penises (“My penis isn’t too small, your vagina is too big”) and even uncircumcised ones (“There was so much skin on it, it was like a Shar-Pei.”).
It was bold, shocking and dared go where no woman has gone before, even if it was written by a couple of gay guys. What’s up with that? I guess some homosexuals really are a girl’s best friend.
Between the humor and smut lay something smarter, the soul of single women who would rather stand alone than settle, who put their friends at the center of their universe, at least until the right one cometh.
They captured the real experience so completely that it was sometimes eerie to see these characters whose lives seemed to mirror my own, like the television was talking back to me: Carrie can’t think of anything to write about for her columns and hides from her editor; Carrie has no place to live and realizes she spent $40,000 on shoes; Carrie runs off to Paris with the wrong man; the wrong man proposes to Carrie; Carrie trips and falls when everyone is watching.
This character’s life is an ever-evolving course in humility, and it’s way too close to my own. I can’t help but wonder ” does HBO have the cornerstone on the real reality TV?
When the series ended, they called it “the end of an era,” and the same goes for my life as well. The quiet of that Sunday night the final episode aired was disrupted by phone calls from stuffy-nosed friends blowing nostalgia into a pile of crumpled tissues, sitting in the glow of their TV sets in places we once shared the same types of memories.
I don’t mean to sound cheesy (I only watched Oprah like once or twice), but the experience conveyed on this show was so real to us. Even though we weren’t sitting around a coffee shop in New York, we did surf together every day at sunset, bobbing on top of our boards, looking out for dolphins and that green flash that’s supposed to happen as soon as the sun goes down.
We did brave things and stupid things, accomplished a lot and digressed a little, worked hard and played hard and got our hearts broken more than once, more than twice even. But every night after work we paddled out into the surreal light of California sunset and left all our troubles on land behind us, at least for the moment.
Now I’m here, and they’re there, and we’re farther apart than ever as we move on with our lives. They’re getting married, having kids, traveling the world and I’m … I’m hanging out in Aspen doing whatever it is that I’m doing in Aspen.
At least I’ll get to see “Sex and the City” one last time, at the St. Regis Ballroom in Aspen tomorrow night. (Of course I got a ticket. I have my ways, so there.) But I am not one of those losers who sits around waiting for the once-in-a-lifetime chance to see their favorite stars in the flesh, sitting in the very same room in the very same town under the very same stars on the very same planet.
But since I didn’t get whisked off to Paris by my lover, only to be followed there by the love of my life like Carrie did, I’ll take whatever I can get.
[The Princess swears she will behave herself at tomorrow’s show, and there is no need for additional security. Sarah Jessica Parker can e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org]
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