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10 Things I Learned From Melrose Place

March 20, 2009

I’ve been re-watching Melrose Place lately. This is not a shock to people who know me in real life; I was quite vocal about my passion for this stupid show, which I watched religiously from start to finish.

The nighttime soap, which spun off from Beverly Hills 90210 in 1992, broke every record for bizarre, over-the-top, ridiculous soapy goodness. But it also captured my generation perfectly: I was 24 in 1992, the same age as the characters, and as my life has progressed I’ve had bizarre, over-the-top, ridiculous soapy circumstances happen to me. I am not making this up. It was just a different kind of soapy goodness.

Here’s the thing: man cannot live on horror, science fiction, action and mystery alone. Every once in a while, I have to cleanse the palate. For this, I tend to turn to Melrose, Little House or the Waltons. It helps give me balance. Go ahead and laugh; while you’re laughing, I’m glowing with inner peace.

Here are 10 life lessons I got from Melrose Place:

  1. If you divorce someone at the start of an episode, you can still sleep with him or her at the end, even if you married someone else in the same episode.
  2. If you are a woman on the show, you will sleep with Jake.
  3. If you contract a fatal disease or disability, it will vanish on its own, unless you were faking.
  4. If you want to make it in Hollywood, but you have no talent, can’t act, look stupid and actually are stupid, it’s okay, because you’ll make it. All you need is to be Andrew Shue.
  5. If you’re a gay man, you’ll file about a dozen discrimination lawsuits before you even see another gay man around.
  6. You can get away with anything — attempted murder, blackmail, extortion, kidnapping — if you’re a doctor.
  7. Your first death probably won’t take. Your second? It’s 50-50. You’ll have to be killed three times for it to be real.
  8. Struggling? Unemployed? Broke? In Los Angeles? You can afford a sweet-ass apartment with a clean pool and no crackhead neighbours.
  9. Heather Locklear is really easy.
  10. There aren’t any black people in Los Angeles. Well, there were a couple, but they left in Season 1.

So, the question is, how have I applied these lessons to my own life? Well, I haven’t, not really. When I was broke and stupid, I lived in a crappy apartment, and I’ve actually had all the illnesses I’ve had. But I intend to start applying the Melrose method to my life. And things should start looking up. I’ll keep you posted. Now, I have to go — Heather’s on the other line. Cheers.

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