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Love, American Style

Are you singing that song in your head, folks?

You, fellow Gen X and up Americans, most likely know what song I’m referring to. It’s the one from that goofy t.v. show of the same title from the 1970’s. I think it might be the first tune that my brain latched onto as a youth.

For those not in the know, here it is:

Clearly, this is a post about love. It’s Valentine’s Day and yesterday was Galentine’s Day, my lovely readers!

I just had to give a shout out to a character I loved so much from one of the best American sitcoms ever: that waffle loving gal Leslie Knope from Parks and Recreation, played by the wonderful Amy Poehler.

Speaking of Parks and Recreation, Hubs and I recently began watching “The Last of Us” on HBO Max. And, to our surprise, Ron Swanson showed up.

Of course, the actor, Nick Offerman was not in character as Ron Swanson here. That would be weird. He was instead playing a character living in isolation after the world went to complete crap due to a fungal catastrophe that killed the majority of humans and turned them into zombies.

His character, Bill, encountered another man, Frank, who was seeking shelter. Bill opened up his home to Frank and they fell in love.

I applaud the writers and creators of this show for giving us a tender and honest story that reflects the vulnerability of falling in love. As a LGBTQ+ ally, I appreciate that they chose to validate and lift up same-sex love and romance in the way they did. This episode brought me to tears and I believe Nick Offerman deserves all of the awards that exist for sharing this character and his story with the world.

As Bill, Nick Offerman performed a song (originally sung by the songbird Linda Ronstadt), in such a beautifully vulnerable manner in this episode. It really touched my heart, and I can’t imagine it not touching yours. Here it is, courtesy of YouTube:

This gives me chills

Any of you who haven’t yet seen “The Last of Us” ought to really get on with it. It is just so well done.

Since I’m going on here about love-worthy American t.v. shows; I’ve gotta tell you I love the new show on Peacock, “Poker Face”. It stars the one and only Natasha Lyonne (who, incidentally, worked with Amy Poehler from the aforementioned Parks and Recreation to create Russian Doll on Netflix), and it’s a winner. One of the many cool things about this show, beyond Natasha’s portrayal of the character Charlie, is how the producers put in little bits of nostalgia for those old mystery shows that some of us watched back in the 70’s. Like good old “Kojak” and “Murder She Wrote”.

For instance, the font used in the credits. The titles of episodes (like “Exit Stage Death” which featured Ellen Barkin and Tim Meadows at their ridiculous best). The way how, at the end of each episode, Charlie presents her thought process on what really happened (i.e., who, how, and why the person was murdered). It’s so refreshing to see a t.v. show that is about murder yet not overtly violent. In one episode, Charlie made a reference to “Felix Unger” from the “Odd Couple”, which I thought was particularly clever.

I believe that American t.v. is very good at the moment and I am loving it.

How about you?

I hope your Valentine’s Day is full of sweet, funny, and lovely moments, whether you watch some good old (or new) American t.v. or not. And plenty of chocolate of course!