The guy behind the counter at the bagel shop is a low-talker. I see his lips moving but I can’t hear a word he’s saying. I nod my head and hope I add the “hmmns” and “uh-huhs” at the appropriate intervals. Fortunately, this has never resulted in me having to wear a puffy shirt on The Today Show because I missed something important in the conversation.
If you’re a Seinfeld fan you know exactly what I’m talking about. The show’s quirky characters and brilliant writing created a new lexicon, SeinLanguage. (That’s also the title of Jerry Seinfeld’s book, a collection of his observational comedy.)
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve related real life to Seinfeld and people know exactly what I’m talking about. The wife of my ex-boss was a tall, burly woman. She spent a lot of money trying to look more feminine: she had a boob job, got her teeth fixed, bleached her hair (or were her gorgeous locks really extensions?), got acrylic nails, and she could open her own store with all of her couture clothes and handbags. A personal trainer came to her house several days a week and she had her own tanning bed. But how did I describe her after meeting and shaking hands with her? “She has man-hands.”
The show about nothing was actually about everyday life, situations that apply to many of us. Ever had to send someone an obligatory invite to a party, an un-vitation? Ever think about celebrating Festivus instead of Christmas when the holiday season gets too stressful? Ever lost a friend due to break-up by association? And how annoying do you find close-talkers? What don’t they understand about personal space? Nobody likes the hand sandwich either. Very awkward.
Because of Jerry I now think of all dermatologists as pimple-popper MDs. Like Elaine, I think you should be able to simply order a big salad in any restaurant. And like George, in a moment of intense frustration I have been known to shout Serenity Now!
I’ve used “yada yada yada“ to tell a story faster. I’ve re-gifted and been in a must-lie situation. But you can trust me when I say that if you tell me a secret I’ll put it in the vault and no one has the combination.
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When Madison was little I realized we were watching too much television when we had the following conversation on a Friday evening:
Madison: Mom, how late can I stay up tonight?
Me: Well, it’s a weekend. We can talk about it. What time were you thinking?
Madison: Well, just tell me – what time do you think I have to go to bed?
Me: I don’t know honey. If you want to stay up a little past bedtime that would probably be fine.
Madison: Can I stay up until eight – seven central?
Me: (laughing) Um, is there something on T.V. that you wanted to watch?
Madison: Yes. Roger Rabbit. It comes on at eight – seven central.
Yes, I let her stay up.