Tuesday, December 02, 2008

felix or oscar?

My daughter has inherited my allergies (sorry, kid.)

When I was a kid I loved to watch the Odd Couple on television. In New Jersey it was on a re-run schedule of I think, two episodes in the early evening. I loved both characters, and especially, the setting of New York City, where I hoped to live as an adult (and I did, for about fifteen years.) When I was first watching it I related to Oscar's sports columnist. I liked to write, too, but especially appreciated his ability to come up with the perfect wisecrack for every occasion. I could forgive him his Mets cap versus my beloved Yankees. I could never be as sloppy as Oscar, but surely I could never be as finicky as Felix, right?As I get older and my allergies change, I can hear myself almost honking as Felix would do. I also find myself relating to his fear of mold and dust and whatever else might lurk in Oscar's unbelievably messy bedroom.

The other day we were watching Clean House, which is the "wise-ass" version of many cable if-you-clean-up-your-stuff-you-will-clean-up-your-head shows. Sometimes these people's homes seem fake, as they are just too messy to be real. Except I know someone with a crazy house like that, and I'm afraid that they could use some mental spring cleaning, too. It reminds me of the Odd Couple episode "A Taste of Money" where the guys meet two older men, also roommates. One of the rooms in their apartment has been completely taken over by a gigantic rubber band ball. Felix looks at Oscar and says, "remind you of anyone?" I wish they'd put that show back into syndication...

Felix Unger: Everyone thinks I'm a hypochondriac. It makes me sick.

Oscar Madison: You want brown juice or green juice?
Felix Unger: What's the difference?
Oscar Madison: Three weeks.

Felix Unger: Oh, Oscar, Oscar, Oscar!


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