dreadedcandiru2: (Default)
The odd thing about the whole business about the Circle of Life bird's nest is that we have to deal with an annoying trend that makes the Pattersons look like worse people than they actually should be: their insistence on being abysmally ill-informed about pretty much everything while at the same time being convinced of their having the best words and the best knowledge. The reason for their being given a free pass for being a whole damned family of Cliff Clavin can best be summed up by the following rule of thumb:

If a character is attempting to appear profound, intelligent or worldly-wise and, in doing so, reveals him or herself to be laughably ignorant, we should take the incoherent and factually incorrect gibberish he or she pushes past his lips to be the Wisdom of the Gods.

which is balanced by the corollary

1. If someone who is not a Patterson offends a Patterson by saying something that most people would regard as both reasonable and sensible, that person is in the wrong.

2. If April is oppressing another Patterson by saying something reasonable and sensible that he or she doesn't feel like hearing, she can be considered a non-Patterson.

This is why April is an extra-selfish drama garbage troll princess person for making ill-informed and selfish drama queen noise about how Liz is big enough to get her own damned apartment and should also maybe feel guilty about rewarding a skeevy little thief.
dreadedcandiru2: (Default)
The interesting thing about watching Connie be an inept fool who blundered her way into being an antagonist step-mother because she was too stupid to know what she was doing is not that she still doesn't realize that she brainlessly set herself up to fail yet another of life's challenges. The interesting thing is that her failure as any sort of effective parent to the Thomas girls reaches the point that their father has to do something Lynn finds to be unnatural and wrong and be primary caregiver in the face of his wife's incapacity.

This breezy assumption that a mother must resent the unrewarding necessity of being the only person competent to be a parent to a child seems to inform Liz's hatred and need to see Therese as her inferior. She can't live in a world where a woman would be indifferent to the need to nurture because it's been hammered into her skull all her life that her job is to pop out a squawler who will never thank her. Having a man come in and do her function as well as her or better means that her parents and friends are full of shit and not worth impressing and Liz isn't strong enough to face that.
dreadedcandiru2: (Default)
Now, I think that it's pretty obvious that a horribly distorted body image such as Lynn's cannot exist in full bloom unless it's on a leafy-green background of projecting her belief that really, she is too ugly to deserve love onto the world. This is not only why we have Elly and Liz staring holes in the mirror convinced that they are too hideous to be worthy of the affection they crave, it's also why we have to deal with the very superficial Connie being praised for what Mira is an evil person for wanting WHEN she gets her bowels in an uproar because Dirk Dagger isn't conventionally handsome.

This is rather idiotic because Dirk could, despite his looking like he died ten years ago but came back for his car keys and his lack of interest in talking to older people ginned into hating him by a news media looking for the next great moral panic to scare the rubes with, be a pretty good guy and the best male bargain Molly could hope for. The problem is that raindrop shallow Connie sees ugly grandchildren who are ugly and people blaming her for the ugly children. It's also why Eric pulled much the same shit Howard Erk did but Lizardbreath doesn't want him off the planet because ugly people need to die.
dreadedcandiru2: (Indignant Candiru)
Somehow or other, I've managed to find myself in the possession of the collection If This Is A Lecture, How Long Will It Be? and noticed something annoying. Not only do we have to deal with Lynn/Elly bleating about how men objectify women by having Mike a cloud that could either be Mickey Mouse ears or a pair of breasts as the latter, we have another piece of annoying interstitial art that has him scowl because either the school boards or Elly's idea of appropriate material for studying reproduction is a cutaway of a flower instead of the 'good' stuff. The reason that I mention this is that a certain fear of talking about sex is part of the strip itself and it ain't just her freaking out about Mike somehow getting a copy of a skin rag.

The arc I have in mind is all about Elly, her squealing about how it should be the State's job to save her from having any discussion about sex at all by making it illegal for kids to express any sort of curiosity about anything like that and the cowardly means by which she avoided doing so with April. While we are clearly meant to cheer her on for remaining woefully ignorant about her body and about human reproduction, the facts of the matter tend to cast her in something of a negative light. It's as if she's living proof that abstinence campaigns backfire because all three kids and Meredith were unplanned and came at super-inconvenient times. This wouldn't have happened if the dumb people allowed themselves to understand sex.
dreadedcandiru2: (Default)
Now, to get back to the blizzard arc, it seems to me that we get to see three examples of characters making fools of themselves because they answer a vital question incorrectly because they fail to understand the people around them. Said question is, of course, "What did you think was going to happen?"

First off, we have to deal with Elly's angry astonishment when confronted with something she actually should have seen coming. While she'll deny it with her dying breath, she shouldn't have actually expected John to be honest about the Yellow Penis-Mobile Of Overcompensation's ability to handle a Canadian winter any more than she should have expected him not to want to glom on to her ride. She should have remembered that he and the kids see the non-job she has too much of her identity invested in as a sort of paid hobby and also remembered that he saw taking a cab to work as being almost as big a humiliation as riding the bus.

Second, John should have remembered that Elly wasn't going to just let him borrow her wheels no how. He should have remembered that she hates the idea of being stuck at home because she hates the idea of being thought of as the organic adjunct of a gas range just because he doesn't seem to want her to get the degree of being treated like his equal.

Finally, we have Mike who seems to have expected the city plow crews to leave the town immobilized just so he could sit home the following day instead of going to the evil building of being told that he's a lazy ignoramus with an inflated self-concept. About the only person who didn't flunk that question was Lizzie and that's only because she didn't notice that her teachers are chicken too.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As we know, Elly never managed to disabuse herself of the notion that Mike's job is to take care of Lizzie for her. She's never going to admit that the worst possible person you could put in charge of (say) a three year old is a six-year old because even with all the good will and caring in the world, Mike didn't have the stamina, awareness, skills or authority to salvage the situation if it got really bad. Any hints otherwise and any anecdotal evidence that disproves Elly's philosophy would be waved aside because what happened to someone else couldn't possibly happen to her because she's a good parent.

The reason that I mention this is that now that we're in the middle years, it's getting even harder for Mike to actually do the job he actually shouldn't. Lizzie is large enough and fast enough and sufficiently articulate to subvert any attempts Mike might make to assert authority and he's complacent enough to assume that an older child would know better than to do things that would disturb him. The kid who understood that he had to keep an eye on her is being replaced by another improvident adult who lives and loves to tempt fate. Eventually, he'll howl Deanna's name because for reasons that elude him, his kids want him to look at them.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
Of course, the really irritating thing about the way Deanna treated April is that she shared with John the idea that she'd allayed a concern instead of confirming a decision. John has yet to truly acknowledge that when he'd tried to reassure April that a fait accompli was simply spit-balling, he hadn't fooled her at all, Deanna has yet to get it through her Romulan hairdo that April immediately realized that someone who made glib comments about turning her into a servant thought of her as hired help.

I'm not sure exactly why it is that the Pattersons really tend to suck at reassuring people as regards their intentions but I do know that they don't even realize it. This tells me that the reason Therese is suspicious of Liz is that the Breath only thinks that she didn't do anything to agitate the woman. Given how she had to be told not to make a big, ugly spectacle of herself at Therese's wedding (all the while complaining about the cruel unfairness of not calling attention to herself or upstaging a boyfriend stealer like she was in middle school or some such malarkey), it's quite likely that she made an immature fool of herself and couldn't wait to tell Therese what a bad person she was intruding in her friend's life. It's like watching the title character from the webcomic Candi get all judgmental and huffy because she seemed to think that she had right of first refusal on who someone she was never gonna date had relations with.

This leaves us, of course, with the question of who a Patterson thinks he or she is fooling in cases like this. The answer is either 'no one' or 'just themselves.'
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
Of course, the real problem with April is not that in any real universe, she'd be having a rather depressing life being compared unfavorably to her idiotic drudge sister and lottery winner brother. The real problem is that we're dealing with a bunch of idiots who sort of think that she arrived when she did in order to inconvenience them all. It's probably futile to try to convince stupid people that no, there isn't a connection between a run-of-the-mill Alberta clipper dumping ice, sleet and snow on their stupid heads and closing roads to the hospital and the arrival of a child at home like farmers and poor people.

After all, Elly's cathartic poem of "I'll write a passive-aggressive pile of crap poem about sleepless nights attending to a colicky baby instead of beating it to death" reminds us that we are dealing with a very stupid and angry woman who doesn't understand that babies can't not react to pain and discomfort just so some overgrown five-year old who wanted a REALLY fancy doll she could put away when it became a bother can get some sleep. Assuming April was sitting in there consulting the weather forecast so as to determine the best time to make everyone's life worse is just par for the stupid course.

What makes things worse is that she's got an idiot husband who feels as if his peers think less of him because April wasn't born in a hospital like normal, said bovine twit sister who resents having to have ben her primary caregiver and said louse older brother who's still wetting himself when he has to remember being exposed to childbirth. Since the inconvenience of having a sister so much younger than they are is compounded by the melodramatic entry of said sibling, they too think that Family Guy is a documentary.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
If you'll allow me, I'd like to transition from reminding you how Elly warped the children to showing how she and John teamed up to ruin them before talking about his solo contribution to making Mike, Liz and April a drag on society. The first thing that should be noted is that both she and John seem to believe that the worst thing that a person can do it to make them feel guilty about an activity that pleases them. The strip is marred by one of them doing something selfish and stupid only to turn around and bitch about the terrible people who want to deny them their harmless amusements and pleasures that affect no one and infringe on no one's rights.

This is owing to a sort of wishful thinking on their parts. They want their actions to not have consequences or to inconvenience other people in order to preserve an illusion of perfect innocence therefore anyone who might be run over in their quest to seek out comfort as if it were the sovereign goods either ceases to exist or actually knows that they should get out of the way but, owing to a love of chaos and hatred of the good, stand in their path with their demands. Since the children learn how to see people by emulating them, we see children who want to run over other people who blather about wars being declared by pop stars they aren't jealous of and pregnant women willing them to slip on the ice when they're called on for violating the standards of common decency.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
To continue merrily on from talking about how Michael made a mess of his love life by doing unto Martha what he would do unto Rhetta and how he basically hastened the permanent alienation of respectability-seeking hysterical idiot weakling Connie and Lawrence, it's fairly obvious that the horrible decision making process of the Patterson family seems to be the result of a fairly rigid pattern. As before, I will use the Housening as an example of this horrid decision making process because everyone is expected to like Mike's brain fart. How it was that Elly ended up having to play catch-up and April had to be defamed by a father in name only can be broken down in discreet steps.

  • Stage One: Crisis Mongering. As we know, Michael insisted on not wanting to consider the many suitable dwellings suggested as substitutes for Lovey Saltzmann's Death-Trap Of Love. The ostensible reason is that most of the places were too expensive, too small or too run down but he gave the game away when he objected to having to deal with a lease. Mike and Liz seem to have been brought up to think that having to deal with a legal contract that explains what they are allowed to do as being a form of tyranny because they have idiot parents who don't like having limits set on their behavior. This inability to see the world properly also explains his fear of Mira. He can't cope with generosity because it's not something he grew up with so has to assume there's a catch.
  • Stage Two: Self-imposed Blindness Michael might have spent most of his time talking about how hard things were on April but he never really did anything to defend her from her persecutors because he never really bothered understanding how the others reacted. He didn't take into consideration the fact that Liz was too preoccupied with the mess she stupidly made of her love life to care, he didn't want to look at his wife and see someone who wanted to turn the child into her serf, he didn't want to look at a mother who had decided to stop being a parent and he especially didn't want to look at a father who does not want to admit that children have feelings that can be hurt because doing so would make him look in the mirror and see the ugly fool we know him to be. All he could do was wish that he could move out but he had no solution to a problem that didn't involve being enslaved to Mira's family politics.
  • Stage Three: Idiotic Deus Ex Machina Luckily for him, his need for a place that had an alcove wherein he could be protected from being part of his family coincided with John's infantile need for a smaller house that had land that could be wasted idiotically. Everyone was happy expect April for some reason that was probably just teenage hormones because the alternative is that they were dicks to her and that couldn't be the case.
  • Stage Four: Sordid Victory The same asshole who wrote a break-up email because he was too lazy and blind and stupid to find out what Rhetta thought thinks that his bullying his mother and kid sister out of their home because he's a lazy, ignorant shmuck is a wonderful thing that everyone loves because the alternative is seeing that people are right to see him as a repellent joke.

We can plug anything into that structure and get the same result. We can plug in Liz getting all butt-hurt because Therese doesn't like her unwelcome presence in her life into it. We can plug Mike refusing to admit that Martha isn't trying to make a fool of him and also tell a crazy lie about crazy friends who have the crazy idea that her wanting to have a private life means she thinks they're better than they are. We can plug in his stupid belief that Lawrence tried to hide his sexual orientation in order to humiliate him. We can plug in April's refusal to admit that Becky brings out the jealous idiot in her. We'll get the same result: the Pattersons making ugly fools of themselves and thinking that they're great people.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
One of the themes that we're going to be bludgeoned over the head with in a few weeks' time is that math is something of a hardship. We have Mike's constant beefing about he hates stoooooopid numbers because it's tooooo haaaaaard and he haaaaaaates it and teachers just make him do stoopid math because they hate him and want to torture him. Also, Lawrence's section of "The Lives Behind The Lines" has him be confused and angered by anything that involves an equation as he questions the need for something he's never going to use in real life so getting a C should be just fine.

The form Lynn's anti-mathematics propaganda is going to take is a strip in which Liz's first grade teacher talks down to her because she has yet to figure out how to do addition in her head. Like a lot of well-meaning but ineffective dumb people, Miss Blais probably spent her career never having realized that not all children develop at the same rate. As someone who was treated like a side-show freak because I could sort of read at a grade two level before entering school, I can attest to the horrid power of the institutional failure to admit that children aren't interchangeable, act-alike, think-alike drones who are all at the same level. What this means is that children like Lizzie (and Mike and Lawrence) fall through the cracks and end up having their enthusiasm for a subject destroyed by a teacher trained to ignore common sense in favor of a dogma.

The ultimate end result of all of this is to produce adults who struggle to understand how to budget because a Miss Blais killed the part of his or her brain that can learn math. This, I think, is why Mike and Dee were so pooooooor despite both of them making loads of money. The little boy who hated stoopid math and stoopid numbers because his stoopid vanity and stoopid need to avoid effort collided with his stoopid teacher's stoopid need to think of him as being stubborn and bad because he wasn't able to do what some abstraction said he should became a stoopid man who stoopidly wastes his money because he can't picture in his head where it's all going.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
At first blush, the Sunday strip that Elly not see any sort of use in all the hard work Brian had to do to programming his jumping man computer sprite because she can make a crude flip book in seconds looks like the bog-standard "Elly versus technology" strips that had her do battle with machines that weren't designed for an impatient idiot who resents the fact that the world doesn't have to freeze in place because she doesn't feel like catching up. The problem is that the computer is not really the problem. What I think that the problem happens to be is that Brian can't say "Computer....make a jumping man" any more that Phil can play something Elly can sing along to without having to do anything haaaaaard and baaaaaaad and wrooooong like thinking about what she's doing.

This is because if you look at the strip's history, you'll notice it's the hard work, dedication and skill that are the real problem the Pattersons have with other people. After all, whenever you see the Martian yap about the war Becky doesn't realize that she's declared, what she really means is that she resents that Becky is driven to get good at something because her parents declare that to be a pernicious and unnecessary hindrance to the good life. This ill-informed yapping about her turning her back on friends and fun to chase an evil, distracting star is little more than the balm people who don't have the stamina or will-power to get what they want use to soothe themselves when confronted with genuine greatness. It was ever thus, though. For every man or woman of genuine skill, there are at least a thousand resentful pygmies kicking at his or her shins because they won't put in the effort but still expect a pat on the head and a cookie for breathing.

Also, for those of you who talk about how much rushing about Elly does and how tired she always seems to be, let me point out that she wouldn't have wasted all that time if she put in real effort. If she'd learned to do the dishes and the laundry properly, she'd have saved herself at least ten man-years of wasted effort.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
The odd thing about this particular summer is not that it's spent watching John and Phil act like panicky idiots because Lynn wants to prove that men are crazy and wrong and silly and stupid for taking pride in shared discomfort instead of whining piteously about it like she would. The odd thing is that this and the next are the closest Mike and Lizzie have to a normal summer at home. Sure, this summer is wasted by having to walk on eggshells because John is what Heavy Weapons Guy would call "a tiny baby man" who can't take being laughed at while the next is spent watching a short-tempered idiot girl land on both feet on Mike because she's too stupid to close her blinds in a neighborhood filled with idiot boys who want a peep show but they do actually spend time at home without someone screaming about surviving contact with her horrible children who want to devour her brain.

This sort of thing is why I miss [livejournal.com profile] aprilp_katje's "April's Real Blog"; that's because [livejournal.com profile] howtheduck's Michael would, if prompted, deliver a long-winded, distraction-laden and pompous defense of his parents' overweening need to deny him and his siblings a normal summer that would somehow manage to point out the flawed logic behind it. My guess is that he'd be made to say something like "The neighbors have an odd habit of saying that they prefer my having my children play with the junk I spread all over the lawn like some kind of farmer to having the shrieking idiot who used to live there screaming at children she just let wander around aimlessly until all hours" while at the same time not realizing that they're actually talking about Elly. This is because the Michael Lynn created would probably be saying the same thing for the same reason. He defends the stupid way Elly raised him in such a manner as to be an indictment of said method's pernicious uselessness.
dreadedcandiru2: (Royally Peeved Candiru)
It occurs to me that a cursory reading of Annie and Steve's Liography leads one to a fascinating discovery. When you end up getting told that Annie's happy ending is worth more because she had to work like a piston to get it and that Steve's major malfunction is that he's a day-dreaming, apathetic, shiftless clod who waits for miracles and magic to happen when he should have worked and worked and worked and worked like he was supposed to, you end up with the realization that there's one law for pretty much everyone else on the planet and another law for the Sainted Patterson Family.

After all, most of the people who they deign to hate insist that they too must strive and be ambitious so that they can waste their lives and exhaust themselves and miss the miracle that Fate had granted them to balance out a life of privation and sorrow. Hard work is a wonderful thing for a Gordon Mayes because it serves the greater good and the sovereign cure to Steve Nichols because he's an ordinary man but plugging away at something and trying to be more than they are is a terrible thing for the Pattersons because it makes them bad people who want too much and also prevents them from experiencing the miracle of having what they want simply fall in their laps.

Now, a lesser person would assume that the strip is written by someone who's basically still a child who insists that while all of her classmates had to do the work and obey the rules that bore her and get in her way, she's a special snowflake that the rules don't apply to. A lesser person would also remember that such a person either doesn't notice the people who hold the door open for her or, like Mistah J, assume that people are put on this Earth for the sole purpose of holding doors open and needn't be thanked. Since most of the Pattersons are Lynn, what we end up with is a family of unappreciative clods who believe in a world of magic and unicorn farts because they refuse to acknowledge the people they're climbing over.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
Of course, distracting yourself from the realization that you yourself might be a monster isn't the only thing they're good for. John's need to believe in monsters so as to avoid having to agree with Porkypine when he said "Don't take life so serious, son....it ain't nohows permanent!" is counter-balanced by April's need to not face the fact that her family are monsters.

First off, we have to remember that April is blessed with a mother who blames her for the loss of options she would have been too chicken-hearted to explore in the first place. It really isn't April's fault that Elly has no idea how to function in the modern labor force and tends to lose interest in attempts to get that degree she'd like.

Second, we have to remember that she also has a father who had no use for her because she wasn't a "real" little girl. When one considers that this means that he wanted a passive doll-child who'd stroke his ego, flirt with him and not challenge him, one is less than sympathetic to his plight and perhaps wishes that rabid cop Elliot Stabler would show up and adjust his attitude.

Third, we have to remember that she has had an older brother who ignored her, an older sister who sees her as part of the reason that no one wants to talk to her and who thus needs to be slapped down and a sister-in-law who regards her as someTHING to be exploited. The realization that April sometimes makes is that no one really wants her around unless they can get something from her and are trying to get away from her. The problem is that the people who treat her like crap don't want to admit that their motives aren't virtuous so encourage her fears about this person who makes her feel uncomfortable. This means that she has to ask herself the same thing Ol'Porkypine told Pogo and Howland that Churchy La Femme should have asked when faced with the minor dilemma of having three predatory idiots using a witch-hunt to make him into an entree; she too gotta decide which is most insultin': to be cooked by such monsters as is agin her or WITH such monsters as is for her.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
In a recent discussion of a Lynnsight, [profile] howtheduckgetting a reward for turning in on-spec alphabet samples while hers would have to drastically improve in order to qualify as being illegible. Years of being told to pay attention in class end up leaving Liz with the mistaken impression that people who expect her to understand the entire core concept behind education are horrible people who hate her for no reason and single her out for abuse because they hate the idea of her being happy.

The reason that she'd go on to accuse Evil Career Woman of willing her to slip on glare ice because the alternative of having to admit that she was so pissed off at being accused of trying to destroy someone's marriage to look where she's going is that she's been raised to think a certain way. Michael's struggle with playing the trumpet shows us what that belief is when Phil makes the stupid-ass mistake of showing him what a real master of the form sounds like. While Phil has the same work to win philosophy that his parents have, he doesn't realize that Mike has grown up in an environment where the following belief:

"If doing a certain thing means that I can't have all the praise right now, I should quit in despair and wail about the cruelty and injustice of the world and all the uncaring and horrible people who hate me and want me to suffer and mock me who live in it."

is held as being axiomatic because Elly never quite managed to figure out that people who tell her that her work needs improvement aren't trying to destroy her because they hate her. This is why I almost prefer John's active antipathy to his kids' interests to Elly's poisoned support; at least with him, you know what you're in for. With her, you get mixed signals, hypocrisy and bafflegab.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As we know, one of the plot threads involved in Lynn's current attempt to nag Rod about how bad an idea pursuing his love of dentistry when the superior destiny of caring for someone who was busy willing herself into becoming helpless awaited him is her nagging Aaron about expecting his mother to actually do the odd bit of housework so that his classmates wouldn't ride him about how odd the dentist's wife is. When he isn't wailing about how deprived he is because his mother hasn't been forced to put her life on hold just in case a lazy, selfish, thoughtless little rat bastard idiot kid might need his shoes tied or some damned thing or how he's been reduced to the sort of horrible slave called a housewife, he's busy conjuring up a doomsday scenario in which his vindictive parents will make him work and work and work and work and never play or laugh or be happy if he doesn't peel carrots.

This sounds somewhat familiar to me because it reminds me of a scenario in which Elly clearly seemed to believe that the police were going to gun him down in the streets like a dog because nuclear war made him turn his back on happiness, kindness and goodness and dress like Adam Ant for Halloween. It also reminds me of an insane scenario in which John thought that the princess he'd had no idea that he'd raised wanted Mike and his family to freeze and die so she could have her bedroom because teenagers are short-sighted....not to mention how Liz is still convinced that Therese is an evil, puppy-kicking reptilian alien who wants her to die alone because she can't quite figure out that Anthony isn't the last best hope but just the one most convenient for the people of Milboring. It even reminds me of how April is still probably convinced that Becky wants to crush everyone and laugh because the alternative is admitting that yes, she is jealous of her talent. In all of those cases, crazy-ass bullshit apocalyptic scenarios are preferred to the truth because the truth is a lot harder to take. In Mike's case, the fear has the rather obvious source of his being made to admit that now that Lizzie is here, he's just the old model and has to settle for less in life. Every damned thing is seen as a sign that he can't be listened to or allowed to enjoy things because no one wants to have him around now that they've got the baby who can just burp and she's loved and no one is listening and no one loves him.

In this, he's rather similar to Elly and her fear that no one wants to listen to a word she says. Behind her shrill screams about how much trouble Mike would get in for wearing the costume of anarchy and ugliness and war and doom is a woman who feels as if she's supposed to have her voice surgically removed because she's just a housewife. The problem is that the two of them are too similar to really communicate all that well.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
As you might know by know, there's a disturbance in the force in Foob's spiritual successor "Stone Soup." This is because for the very annoying reason that the other female characters have decided sight unseen that the main character cannot possibly be happy with her life as it is, she's pretty much being frog-marched down the aisle in order to be really happy because none of the meddling idiots have ever stopped to consider the idea that maybe, they don't really understand what's going on and are just letting their own need to have a great big party override the happiness of the person they falsely claim to be looking out for.

The reason that I mentioned this idiot plot wherein people who call for sanity and actually figuring things out before they do something stupid are extra-bad and selfish people who want Val to die alone and unhappy and not cared for and all the other imbecile justifications Joan makes for being a presumptuous twit who doesn't want to understand the situation because Lifetime rules the world is that I can readily believe that the same shit is happening to April right now. After all, it happened to Liz. It happened to Mike. It's gonna happen to her because two sets of hillbillies who got married way too damned soon think it worked out great for them and want to make sure that everyone gets married before they find out who they actually are. If it ain't Elly whining pathetically about how lost and unhappy she really is, it's gonna be Gordo and Tracey flinging bullshit about biological clocks April's way.

If that ain't bad enough, they're going to be pointing to the wonderful success of Mike's marriage to Deanna and how happy Liz is to be a frustrated lardarse married to a demeaning jackass who treats her like an inanimate object and who ascribes her baffled longings for more than suburban ennui to having the same crazy woman hormones that made his first wife call him a sub-human piece of shit. Little do they realize that the more they laud John and Elly's ugly marriage of inconvenience as a model, the less she's going to want to get hitched.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
Michael is, of course, the example of the Pattersonian inability to appreciate what and who they have in their lives that's currently being the most annoying. The blanket refusal the characters have to accept people around them for who they are and be glad of their presence is something that will ruin their lives for quite some time. Even unto the latest days, the Pattersons are never happy with what they've got and who they have to share it with. This, I should think, is because the Pattersons tend towards believing that appreciating what you have right here and right now is for quitters. Since whatever they have right now is obviously far worse than what the people who clearly have to be lording their blessedness over them have, they can't be grateful for the mere pittance a cruel fate allotted to them lest they have to accept the cruel mockery of people who think that they're better than they are. Trying to explain to them that no, no one is trying to enslave them with their family politics or crush them with their star power isn't going to work because the depressive element of their narcissism needs to see cruel enemies that want to kick them and mock them for wanting to be happy because otherwise, they're a bunch of grasping jerks who are consumed with jealousy and besotted by egomania.
dreadedcandiru2: (Snarky Candiru2)
The odd thing about the lemonade stand arc that isn't all about how no one is yet aware that Lawrence is about to be dragged away from his home because his immature dimwit mother can't decide if having no one comment on her love life at all is scarier and more humiliating than the scorn she'd probably prefer because it feeds her vanity is that for some reason, Mike decided that he should be in charge of things. The problem I have with putting him or any of his relatives in charge is that they're too much like Pattersons to be in charge of anything. If you'll indulge me, I'll remind you of why the Foobs have no business calling the shots in any group endeavour.

First off, we have to remember that we're dealing with a group of people who don't like being told what to do because they hate the idea that the world is not themselves. Like Hilary Forth, your typical Pattersaint's default belief is that whatever stupid idea they might cough up is far better than any competing concept.

Second, there's the reason this constitutes a problem: the fact that they all have what Red Green once called 'negative courage.' As I described it earlier, this is described as blindly proceeding on a potentially dangerous course of action despite lacking knowledge, awareness, intellect, humility and above all, an ability to properly remember the past. This is why Mike should have never been allowed back to the Portrait offices; Gluttson would have been better off letting a trained ape run the thing instead of an improvident dullard with delusions of being almost adequate to pound sand in a rat hole.

Thirdly, there's the fun problem I call their inability to handle any sort of difference of opinion with any sort of grace. Just as Elly and John react to the least disagreement from the offsprings as if they're being backed into a corner by implacable monsters who want to enslave them, a Patterson confronted with the horror of letting someone competent dictate to her and silence her and use her STAR POWER to crush her and laugh at her for daring to speak because that's just what pretty people like Becky do acts like a stupid, vain child with a fragile ego and a fear of being in the wrong.

Finally, we have to deal with their low boredom quotient. There's nothing a Patterson likes to do more than to quit doing something that doesn't provide instant gratification because they think that hard work is for horrible people who don't wait for miracles and muses and gods like all good-hearted people. I should think that if Gluttson hadn't forced Mikey Girl to run home to Mommy whining about the mean man who expected a poor little boy to act like a man and be haaaaaaaaaaaaated, he would have resigned out of sheer boredom like his worthless mother.


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