Posted by Posted by Dark Beige On 11:21

By The Wonder Years’ Kevin Arnold


Hi, it’s Kevin Arnold here. Yeah, the Kevin Arnold. Oh, I’m alright, got a wife and kids, hold down a pretty good job, and still keep getting residuals from letting my life be dramatised for TV. The money has been great, but sometimes I can’t help thinking that that whole show was a blessing and a curse.

Here’s the problem: I can’t stop having overly meaningful epiphanies wherever I go. And I’m sure making that show was to blame.

The way it all happened was simple: I had some pretty great teenage years growing up in suburban New York back at the turn of the seventies. Years later, I used to shoot the shit with my buddy Alan Peterson, and I ‘d often tell him about those crazy times. Alan was a writer, or rather he wanted to be, but nothing he had tried to sell got picked up.

Then one day we were at his apartment, really drunk, and I was telling him about a time my mom didn’t wash my gym vest and that that’s when I knew; I knew that my mother was a real woman with thoughts and feelings of her own, and that sometimes in life we’ve all got to do our own laundry – in our heart. In all honesty, I was very, very drunk, and when reminded that I’d said this the next day, I didn’t have a clue what I was talking about (I still don’t).

But the thing is, Alan suddenly went totally nuts. He said that that was it – what TV was crying out for was a show where a guy looks back at his teenage years – and narrates in hindsight all those defining moments we go through. He was really whipped up into a frenzy about the whole thing. And the more he spoke about it, the more excited I got too.

Anyway, to cut it short, me and Alan collaborated on the script together – me remembering, him writing, and soon we had something we knew was hot. All the stuff of life was there – those intense teenage friendships, first love, family rivalries, jealousy, pain and forgiveness. NBC loved it – but they didn’t feel that the dramatic tempo was sustained throughout. Sure, I loved Winnie from the moment I laid eyes on her – but I didn’t kiss her for another two years! Sure, dad got sacked, but he got back on his feet pretty fast. When it came down to it, I experienced epiphanies once in a while, not every damn day!

Not good enough. NBC wanted Kevin to constantly be living, loving and learning, and so, me and Alan went back through the script, adding meaning and newly found wisdom wherever we could. When I was 15, I have a vague recollection of going to see my grandmother in Virginia for a weekend, where nothing happened, and Wayne being sick in the car. In the script, my grandmother and I played together in a field at midnight, then Wayne symbolically vomited away his youth out of the car window.

And that’s when I realised – I couldn’t do anything at all, without saying "And that’s when I realised". See?

Now it’s happening all the time. I go to the store to buy milk, and find myself realising that sometimes we all have to sip the milk of kindness from the carton of hope. I go for a jog and I realise that I’m running away from the mistakes of the past. I miss my train to work and that’s when I realise that sometimes we’re so busy worrying that we’ve missed the thing we wanted to catch that we don’t realise we’ve caught the thing we wanted to miss (regret).

It’s becoming a real pain in the ass. I just don’t know what to do about it. Damn those Wonder Years!

And that’s when I realised: I wasn’t mad about the constant stream of meaningless epiphanies, I was mad because I’d never given my father a hug.

Sometimes we’re all just raindrops in the night – but that night I didn’t get wet at all.

Oh God, someone please help me.


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