Thursday, June 5, 2008

Way to go, A.C. Slater!

You remember. I know you do. You watched it religiously, like the rest of us. And you made fun of it and knew that it was very, very bad, but you watched it anyway. And part of you loved it. It was Saved by the Bell, and it is now one of many skeletons in the closet labeled "the early 90's".

On Tuesday night, I took my parents to see A Chorus Line on Broadway - they wanted to see a show, and we'd watched that movie ad nauseam when I was a kid. And who was playing the role of lead character Zack, who interrogates sixteen would-be chorus dancers to decide if they're good enough for his line? Why, none other than Mario Lopez, otherwise burned into our collective memory as A.C. Slater!

It was a little spooky - he looks exactly the same. He's kept in shape, no doubt, and he can dance like the prettiest little ballerina you ever did see. He still can't act, but then, it's a musical. I couldn't help but ponder, though, is he having any sort of emotional dilemmas with the fact that he's playing a character named Zack, of all things? Did he have to weigh the pros of a lead role in a Broadway play against the cons of the obvious, impossible-not-to-be-drawn connections to his early work? Does Mark-Paul Gosselaar call him up drunk, late at night, accusing poor old Mario of riding his coat tails and bemoaning his own semi-failed career? Or is it all Kool-and-the-Gang, a hilarious joke between old friends who admire each other's accomplishments? One has to wonder.

The show was pretty fun, if you enjoy watching people sing and dance. You know what's not fun? Times Square. Or more to the point, maybe, my parents in the middle of Times Square. Yes, this experience was the one that finally cracked me. So our nice evening out is forever blemished, like so many other events, with me losing my shit and screaming at people. But oh well. I'm only human, and it's all water under the bridge at this point. They blissfully forget every fucked up thing that they do; maybe they'll forget my outbursts as well.

I put them in a cab today at approximately 11:50 am; at this moment they're probably sitting at their designated gate in the Jet Blue terminal of JFK. Dad is complaining about traveling; my mom is making faces and whining about her shoulder hurting or her hand tingling. Doubtless their flight will be delayed. Doubtless I'll hear every detail of every hassle when they call tonight to say they've arrived home.

But no matter. No matter at all. Because they're going home, where they belong; where they can bitch and complain in a place where there comfortable, and where I don't have to take care of them or even hear most of it. 1,200 miles away? Or is it 1,500? Glorious, marvelous distance, how I do love you so.

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