Posts Tagged ‘Bingeing’

Bingeing: Grace, Midge … Cauliflower

Thursday, March 25th, 2021

By Bob Gaydos 

 The marvelous Mrs. Maisel. Too funny for her own good?

The marvelous Mrs. Maisel. Too funny for her own good?

    I have a love/hate affair with bingeing.

     … Let me start over. Who ever came up with the concept of bingeing? I mean, putting your feet up and watching hours of your favorite show in one sitting? No commercials and no waiting a week for the next episode? What a concept! What a great idea. I love it.

     Until the episodes end and the seasons end and the pandemic doesn’t end and no one can film new episodes because the actors don’t want to die. And I’m left wondering what, if anything, will ever happen to the marvelous Midge Maisel.

     So I hate bingeing because, well, I always want there to be another episode. So I resist bingeing. Just two episodes a night is enough. Sometimes.

     Living in a locked-down world requires having something to look forward to tomorrow. At least it does for me. Netflix has provided thousands of options to take my mind, and millions of other minds, off the infection curve. Right place, right time. Sign in, Robert; take your pick. Who knew from streaming shows after growing up and getting old on weekly TV series? I don’t watch regular TV and you can only read so much and you can’t go out to the movies. 

    So, “What’s on Netflix?”

    “How about ‘Grace and Frankie?’”

    How about Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin!? And Martin Sheen and Sam Waterston! What a show! Who knew? Well, apparently lots of people who caught on to streaming before me because there were six seasons. Anyway, we loved it. Four veteran actors defying aging and other stereotypes. Funny. Binge!

    And then, uhh, is it over? Apparently, for now. They’re talking about filming the final season. Before the stars really fade, I suspect.

      So now what? Well, Michael Douglas has a show that looks kind of interesting. “The Kaminsky Method.“ He’s an acting coach. And Alan Arkin is in it. More talented veterans. God, I remember when Michael was too young to have his character dealing with prostate problems. “Greed is good!” No matter. Excellent. Funny. Binged. That’s all? Still waiting for a promised new season.

     Then we discovered “The Good Girls.“ Bingo! It’s dark and funny and it’s impossible to watch just one at a time. Usually, it was three, although I tried hard to argue for two. Always wanted to have something left for tomorrow. It ended with a cliffhanger, but came back. Then it went away again. But it’s coming back again. Soon I hope. 

      While exploring and waiting on the “Girls” to return, we looked in on “The Good Place.“ After being mildly interesting, it turned out to be pretty much the same place every episode. Sam Malone seemed a little out of place running Heaven. We didn’t stick around to see how it turned out since the whole concept is really about how it all turned out.

     Umm … Pass the chips, please. Speaking of bingeing, you can’t watch all this great stuff on an empty stomach, right? Apparently, a lot of people put on a lot of weight sitting around for a year bingeing on snacks. Not me. I may have even dropped a couple of pounds

      They call the shows comfort bingeing and I can see why. It certainly helped my mental health. But the new way of watching shows also led to a venture into new comfort foods. To be more specific, more healthful snack foods that satisfy the need to munch, but won’t make me regret all the bingeing later on.

      The basic concept is that the potato isn’t the only vegetable that can be made into a chip, to dip or just munch straight out. As long as we were trying a new way of watching shows, why not new munchies? Let me say straight out, they are all a bit light and airy, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be tasty and also satisfying. Veggie Crisps are mainly rice, peas and black beans and I can polish off a whole bag without feeling guilty. Not bad. Organic lentils (with turmeric) and organic sweet beet crisps didn’t really do much for me, taste wise, but again, they filled the void. Sweet potato crackers held their own. Skinny Pop popcorn, though, is a major favorite. Also pita chips, especially when scooping hummus.

       But the surprise thus far is cauliflower. Cauliflower puffs or sticks, doesn’t matter how you shape them, they just taste good. It’s like eating air with flavor. No heavy aftertaste and no extra pounds after many hours on the couch. It probably should go without saying, but I’ll say it: It’s important to try to stay healthy when bingeing during a pandemic, people.

       It also pays to be adventurous. When Netflix came up dry, Amazon Prime rewarded us with “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.” I love it. My era. Greenwich Village in the ‘50s and ‘60s. Lenny Bruce. And all the music. The best. A wonderfu ensemble cast and a meshugganah script. Funny stuff.

      And yeah, we’re waiting for the new season. Midge’s personal brand of humor got her into trouble one more time in the last episode. We left her standing at the airport, alone. Maybe she’ll spend more time with her kids in the next season. Or maybe the pandemic will end before we run out of shows and cauliflower puffs. Or maybe Grace and Frankie will return. The Good Girls are already on regular TV, so it won’t be long before they’re on Netflix, right? Right?

       Pass the Skinny Pop, please. I have a feeling this will not be the end of bingeing.

rjgaydos@gmail.com

Bob Gaydos is writer-in-residence at zestoforange.com.