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    Bridge Ladies Sometimes I think a meteor could strike the earth and wipe out mankind with the exception of my mother’s Bridge club — Roz, Bea, Bette, Rhoda, and Jackie — five Jewish octogenarians who continue to gather for lunch and Bridge on Mondays as they have for over fifty years. When I set out to learn about the women behind the matching outfits and accessories, I never expected to fall in love with them. This is the story of the ladies, their game, and most of all the ragged path that led me back to my mother.
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I Knew All Along That He Was All Wrong

The problem with watching too much In Treatment is that you begin to take on Gabriel Byrne’s characteristics, his brooding mien, his Irish accent, his eye twitches that signal he gets it. You start telling people to get a good look at themselves, to find the connections among various life events, to pick up the almighty pattern.  And then you try to offer a little  hope, just a wee bit of salvation or redemption or revelation. You know: insight.

I’ve always fancied myself an armchair shrink, so it doesn’t take much for me to get into character. Though, I usually wind up feeling more like the patient. Of course, I love seeing Byrne with his shrink. You know, the doctor heal thyself crap. Sometimes when I stare at my shrink, I imagine her in the most banal situations, waiting for a mammogram, running back into the laundry room to throw a Bounce in the dryer, mindlessly playing with green beans on her square plate.

Therapy is to writing as writing is to ____________________________.

37 Responses

  1. Angel food cake. Or English muffins. Or Cheetos.

    I’m not that deep, and I need a snack.

  2. Wanking?

  3. Therapy.

  4. remaining mildly adjusted within the intense absurdity.

    (wait, there’s a problem with watching too much In Treatment? what about watching Stigmata and then In Treatment so i can have the mix bag of gabe as priest AND therapist before i lay me down to sleep. how’s that for therapy?)

  5. Therapy seems to me like the spoon in the pot, stirring things up. only they take years to float to the surface. Writing is what goes on all the time anyway.

  6. as love is to sex (can only make it better)

    I’m an In Treatment addict. Gabriel Byrne (I should say Paul, I guess) is– well, perfect. Hot, smart, fucked up, sensitive, caring, dark, and with that below-the-surface passion that even his shrink knows is there.

  7. Therapy is to writing as writing is to drinking.

  8. Himitsu-Bako

  9. OMG Betsy! Now I have to think back over my entire career as a shrink knowing that patients were imagining me flossing my teeth or vacuuming instead of paying full attention to my pearls of wisdom?

    Thanks very much!
    B

  10. Therapy is to writing as writing is to excavation.

    In Treatment watching improves dialog tags. All that introspective display. I love it.

  11. Therapy is to writing as writing is to masturbation.

  12. Therapy is to writing as writing is to people reading your writing.

  13. my husband and i have that show coming through Netflix today. i’m excited, it looks great.

  14. another IT thought: it’s so fascinating to watch Debra Winger. She’s such a great actress. What’s cool is you can still see Sissy from Urban Cowboy in there and that layers in all the how-were-we-all-then stuff. Such a great show. Every single actor is incredible. And Jhumpa Lahiri’s involved in Sunil’s story

  15. Therapy is to writing as writing is to life.

  16. Therapy is to writing as writing is to madness (that makes you seek therapy: yay symmetry!).

    Am I at liberty to ask for some crossed fingers out there in Betsyland? Started querying agents this week and had a couple of requests for fulls…

  17. Loving the interview, Betsy.

  18. drowning

  19. …as writing is to typing.

  20. Therapy is to writing as writing is to chaos.

  21. I somehow expected you to finish this part: “I stare at my shrink, I imagine her in the most banal situations…” with: “masturbating, giving blowjobs…” Perhaps that’s offensive, but my mind went there with you. Whoops? Hopefully, when/if I ever have clients (leaning toward never), I’m too ugly for anyone to dare. But someone will. Someone probably has…

  22. writing poetry

    (my brain went all pretzel for a minute! And my problem with In Treatment is that there are such frequent dollops of insight and breakthrough. In reality — in therapy reality — oxymoron — you get one of those maybe once a month…)

  23. I don’t know, but this is funnny:

    “Sometimes when I stare at my shrink, I imagine her in the most banal situations, waiting for a mammogram, running back into the laundry room to throw a Bounce in the dryer, mindlessly playing with green beans on her square plate.”

  24. Therapy is to writing as writing is to spotting an expensive diamond ring in an open sewer. Plenty of those around here (sewers, that is).

    Do you jump in and grab it, especially if you know you’re going to miss the first time? Or do you watch it float away, gently down the stream?

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