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A special place in hell

As the final episodes of Ted Lasso came upon us, I found myself in a state of longing to know how the story unfolded with an unexpected sadness for the story to come to an end. I found myself searching the internet for some show-ending predictions, to see if they matched up with what I was thinking/ hoping/ wondering.

What I was not looking for were spoilers. And I most certainly was not looking for video clips and photos clearly taken from the final show. Alas, and unfortunately, I found some, so I did the unthinkable and pulled away from social media, lest I inadvertently catch a glimpse some twat posted.

Now, I’ve been a cusser all my life, and probably will be ’til the day I die, but I don’t cuss much in my writing because I can edit my words before hitting “publish,” but today and in this post, I might just cuss.

f.u., f.u. and f.u.

I understand we live in a wild and weird world of attention, likes, views, personal branding, social media channels and some illusory vision that likes and retweets and followers create some sort of notoriety, sense of power and, for some, possible income from their “fan” base.

I get it. It’s a weird world.

I get that being on the inside, being in the know and being privileged with access to information is a sign (could be a sign) of some sort of specialness, or connections or supposed power.

I get it. It’s a weird world.

I get that being first, being among the privileged and being the source for coveted information can have its appeal.

I get it. It’s a weird world.

What I don’t get is how someone could take away from others an experience so precious: the opportunity to travel along with someone–many Someone’s in the case of Ted Lasso–and watch their lives unfold, watch their choices add up, watch the challenges and changes in life and how they respond.

What I don’t get is why someone–someone who felt compelled to post spoilers–would deny another the glory, the joy and the deeply human experience of listening to a story and journeying along on the ride.

stories are life

We each live the vast complexity of our own intricate and intimate lives. Some of us struggle more obviously and painfully. Some of us struggle in the quieter parts of our minds. Some of us push our struggles down and cover them with false stories of everything being hunky dory, 100 percent of the time. We each have our unique paths.

But stories are a chance to be with another, to be inside their lives, to have a perspective that allows us to see not just one person’s mind but many connected and impactful events and conversations and people and situations. Stories allow us to imagine being someone else without having to go through their particular brand and flavor of challenges. Or to honor and love another for their path and how they are handling the vagaries of life. Or to witness the power of standing up for one’s convictions. Or to feel as someone’s situation seems dire and impassable, only to watch them later navigate, recover and find their own victories.

Stories–to borrow for a moment from Dani–are LIFE!

so, yeah, screw you

Truth: In the last few days before the final episode, I actively sought and read (scanned) about a dozen articles with predictions for how Ted Lasso would end. That was my choice. I was curious. I had my own theories (and hopes) and even wrote about them here.

But when I saw in my Twitter feed two different pre-final episode video clips of what was clearly video content from the final episode, I felt robbed. Robbed of the right to follow along with this amazing story and to have my own feelings, my own thoughts and my own joys flow in response to the story’s unfolding. I felt angry and disgusted by the people who felt the need to “ruin it” for others with their own need to be first. I felt disappointed that A Bunch of Someones (or Nobodies, if I want to be more cutting)–knowing how much people loved this show–felt their need to be the publicly “privileged one” trumped other’s right to experience the story themselves, free of spoilers.

Stories are Life! Stories are critical to the human experience. Stories are part and parcel of how we understand ourselves and others. And while, arguably, there have been many great TV series and great shows and great characters and great story lines, the intimacy I felt in watching Ted Lasso unfold was, for me, deeper than anything I’d experienced before. And the Spoiler-posting Arseholes took something from me and others. They took our right to be surprised, delighted and connected when they broadcasted their pitiful crumbs of glory and insider knowledge.

Yes, I still enjoyed the final episode. Yes, I still experienced many surprises. Yes, I still loved it.

And, yeah, screw you, Spoiler-posting Arseholes. May there be a special place in Hell (on Earth) for you: one where you can sense and feel what you took from others in some loss you experience yourself.

Or better yet–as Ted Lasso is as much about second chances as anything else–may you reflect, repent and never do such things again.



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