I’d rather regret the things I’ve done rather than regret the things I haven’t done.Lucille Ball
I love Lucy! And you must love Lucy too because who doesn’t just love everything about her? She reminds us that life can be absolutely hilarious. During this unprecedented year, if we stop to find the humor behind our new “normal,” maybe we will just find a piece of ourselves that has gone missing amid this pandemic.
I first started watching “I Love Lucy” when I was 9 years old. My grandmother had recently passed away, and I “inherited” her old black and white TV for my bedroom. If I could position the wiry rabbit ears just right, I could watch nearly 12 consecutive hours of my new favorite show. Little did I know I was TV binging long before the term (or Netflix) were even invented.
“I Love Lucy” aired from 1951 to 1957, and was the most popular TV show available for four of its six seasons. Another fast fact: it was also the first television program to showcase a pregnant woman! But, what made it exceptionally special was that it followed Lucy and Ricky, who weren’t just pretending to be married… they actually were married! There was such a hilarious honesty in the scenarios that the show depicted. Everyone could relate to it in the ‘50s. In fact, everyone still can!
Whenever I’m surfing channels and I’m lucky enough to land on it, I still watch the episodes and laugh and giggle as if it was my first time viewing her! So, let’s celebrate I Love Lucy Day on October 15th together with a few of my favorite episodes in a funny “life explored.”
In this iconic episode, Lucy and Ethel take a job at a chocolate factory. Their task seems simple enough: wrap chocolates as they pass by on the assembly line. With the threat of being fired if even one chocolate goes through uncovered, Lucy and Ethel start stashing away chocolates. Their mouth, the floor, their hat, and even their brassieres quickly become hiding places for the chocolates when they just can’t keep up.
When COVID started, everything slowed down. But now, as time flies, so does the ‘production line!’ Much like Ethel and Lucy, we might begin to ‘fake it till we make it,’ only to have the production line go even faster in the end! This comic episode reminds us to have a few laughs along the way and see our own strengths.
We are all concerned with our health during this pandemic. That means that the ‘Vitametavegamin’ episode (or ‘vita-meeta-meaty-man’ if you’ve had a little too much) gets a special mention! After watching it again, it made me wonder if I need a little vitametavegamin in my life! I’m “tired, run down, and listless.” (I’ve also “pooped out” at too many Zoom parties!) Maybe I should give it a try! Really, though, who doesn’t get a smile from seeing Lucy try so hard to please the commercial producers?!
In this episode, Ethel and Lucy set off to bake some bread from scratch, only to use too much yeast. (And make the world’s longest loaf!) Remember when COVID first started, and everyone was obsessed with baking homemade bread? While there is hardly anything more delicious on planet Earth, there’s definitely been some baking faux pas during the pandemic. Fallen cakes, burnt casseroles, and uncooked chickens… crazy things happen when you have too much time in the kitchen! I’m sure even the revered Pioneer Woman and Barefoot Contessa would agree! This one’s a good reminder to not take life so seriously and go ahead and laugh at ourselves.
We all have to come to grips with this fact of life: everyone is annoying in their own way. Have you noticed how magnified your family’s irritating habits have become during quarantine? Well, if you have, you are far from alone. (They’ve probably noticed yours too!) Ricky’s constant finger-tapping and Lucy’s perpetual coffee stirring had caused unmentioned friction for 15 years. In this episode with Rock Hudson, it is all finally revealed! But life was only beautiful when they decided to love each other despite these little faults. Talk about a life lesson! Next time your significant other does “that thing” (you know, that thing that drives you nuts), maybe laugh instead of frown!
In this episode, Lucy feels like Ricky is homesick. So, she decides to surprise him by bringing his home country to their NYC apartment. In true “Lucy style,” she goes all out! She teleports Ricky to Cuba with decorations and a lip-syncing performance of “Mama Yo Quiero.” It was a sweet gesture which naturally produces plenty of laughs. We may be feeling like Ricky right now… missing our home-town, home-state, or home-country or even our former home-routine. Why not eat some “home-cooking,” drink some iconic beverages, and play some of your old familiar tunes to remind yourself of your roots! (Okay, okay, maybe you don’t need to put a donkey in your living room like Lucy)
All of us are getting a little stir crazy. Travel is restricted and discouraged, so we may be looking for safe ways to ‘get away.’ Take some camping tips from Ricky and Lucy as they venture out on their woodland vacation. The best piece of advice may be to have your bestie camping somewhere nearby. That way, she can bail you out of any crazy situations you get yourself into. (And take a cue from Lucy, and bring your fish from the market so you can show off your catch!)
May we all learn from Lucy’s examples by laughing more and creating more experiences, no matter what kind of a pickle it may put you in. Live freely. Have fun. Enjoy life more like Lucy. That’s why I Love Lucy!
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