Sex in Mayberry? Or is it Andy Grifith in the City…

I am all about contradictions. I see them everywhere. Especially in myself. The other day I was channel hopping between Sex and the City and the Andy Griffith show. I managed to watch two episodes of each and began to see a number of similarities. Let’s face it,  there were a number of differences as well. But overall I was surprised to see that two TV shows that at first glance have nothing in common actually have a lot in common. For example, in The Andy Griffith show you have two confirmed bachelors, Andy and Barney. Through the course of the show I don’t think that either of them marry but they have a number of girl friends.

In the episode I was watching Andy met a girl that he liked and his efforts at courting her were constantly thwarted by Barney’s bumbling efforts at helping him.  Andy wants to spend some time alone with this girl so that he can kiss her. It seemed that every way Andy turned there was Barney throwing a wrench in his plans. When Andy tells Barney that they have been going on double dates a lot and he thinks its time they spent some time alone, Barney thinks he wants to spend time alone with him and he calls his girlfriend to tell her that he can’t see her that night since he and Andy are going to have some guy time.

Finally, Andy just up and tells Barney that he wants to be alone with his girl, because he wants to talk to her, you know? He has some things he would like to say to her alone. Barney gives him that all knowing smile and a little friendly jab in the ribs that says he understands and then he proceeds to tell the whole town that Andy is planning to propose. Barney and the town plan a surprise party to celebrate with the couple. When the whole town intrudes on what was supposed to be a quiet relaxing date, Andy decides that he doesn’t even care anymore and he kisses his girl right there in front of half the town.

As I bounced back and forth between Sex and the City and The Andy Griffith Show there were several things that caught my attention.

First, some things apparently have changed over time. For example, the way we talk. Words like swell, dandy, fixin’, and courtin’, and the like just aren’t words that civilized folks use these days.

Also I noticed that Carrie and Samantha dress a little differently than Ellie and Thelma Lou. And lets not get started on names. Really? Thelma Lou, some things have definitely changed for the better!

As for the guys their fashion hasn’t really changed all that much. They wore a few more hats in the Andy Griffith show and I guess overalls are kind of a think of the past…

But when it comes to relationships I was surprised to see a lot of similarities. I watch Andy trying to ease his arm around Ellie’s shoulder, trying to get some time alone with her and I thought some things never change. I turned the channel and saw similar behavior on Sex and the City. Sure, once they made the moves things well… they moved…right into bed. Now there never was a bedroom scene in the Andy Griffith show unless you count Aunt Bea giving Opie a little Pep talk after his fight with the school bully but that hardly applies in this sense.

I saw Ellie and Thelma Lou working to get a commitment from the men, and I turned the channel to see Carrie complaining to Big about not having a key to his apartment.

So maybe I’m stretching the truth a little to say that they have a lot in common, but there were definitively some similarities. And although I know I haven’t seen every episode of either show I can’t for the life of me recall the main characters getting married, well, at least not staying that way.

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Celibacy in the Suburbs

While the rest of the world produces and watches tv shows like sex and the city, I sit in Provo, UT. living celibacy in the suburbs. I’m not complaining…not really. But if I’m honest I am a little tired of being single. One of my single friends was asked by her students if she was a nun since she wasn’t married. She simply informed them that she was not a nun..its just that when it came to guys…she had none.

Welcome to my life. Celibacy in the suburbs. I hope I’m not anything like Carrie, and I know my roommates don’t really resemble, Charlotte, Samantha, and Miranda but just for the fun of it I’m going to use their names instead of ours.

My episode would be called…

“The Last Kiss”

I have this theory about last kisses. There is no such thing. When you break up with someone and you think, I just want one last kiss. It never ends up that way. The minute the kiss is over you are thinking wait…just one more, one more, and one more. It never ends! That is why I have this theory that when you break up with someone you should just make a clean break and walk away. No strings attached.  No last kiss, no meeting up to talk and absolutely under no circumstances try to remain friends.

Mr. Big called me last night. Samantha and I were having a relaxing evening doing glitter toes in the basement when my phone rang. My special ring tone “Are you going to kiss me or not” alerted us both that it was Big calling. Samantha looked at me with that all-knowing look and said “You know you shouldnt answer that.”

But I did and as I walked up the stairs her words bounced off the walls behind me. “You need to make better choices!” Don’t we all.

Meanwhile across the country Charlotte was dealing with a break up of her own. Or not dealing with it depending on how you like to look at it. She and Trey had decided months ago that until certain issues were resolved they were better off on their own. But then after a few weeks Charlotte started to wonder if they would ever get back together and she wanted just one last kiss.

Having lunch one day at Zupas we had discussed the pros…well pretty much just the cons of the last kiss. The only pro is that it feels good for a minute. I shared with her the sage advice I had learned about last kisses from my own experiences with Big. “It will feel good for a minute and then you have to go through those first weeks without him all over again” I told her. “and before you know it a year has gone by and all you have are a handful of last kisses.” She agreed that it was not a good idea to have her last kiss. We both made a pact that no matter how much we thought it would help and feel good in that moment there would be no “last kiss”

But as so many of us do Charlotte found that she just had to learn from her own experience. She had her “last kiss” and the next thing she knew the last was just the first of many. She and Trey were right back where they had started, with their issues still not resolved.

After answering Big’s phone call we decided we needed to get together just to talk. I don’t want to hate him. I love him too much for that. Our relationship was special…is special in its own unique, often awful sort of way. So we needed this talk, I needed to see him, I needed to establish that while I know that marriage to Big is not a good idea as a person he still means a lot to  me. We decided that we would see each other more often, but in less intimate settings and we would try to work on our friendship. Which meant that there could be no kissing, none of that relationship stuff that makes things complicated. We talked, and we agreed. It was good to see him again. It was good to feel like I was finally moving on. Which led to the inevitable last kiss. The last kiss that I know is not a good idea, the one that just leaves you wanting one more, the one I thought would be the exception.

I deserve more than Big is willing to give me. I see the excitement and love and joy on people’s faces as they kneel across an alter and start a journey that will change their lives forever. I want that. I want a real relationship. I am tired of last kisses. Ironically, they never seem to last.