BULLETT just posted A Psychopath’s Guide to Enduring How I Met Your Mother.
W. M. Akers lures you in with the title (“I watch How I Met Your Mother… Wait. Am I a psychopath?”) and then proceeds to put your fears to rest. No, you are not a psychopath. But guess who is?
As a How I Met Your Mother fan who is not ashamed to admit it, I would like to give an account for my behaviour. Because I welcome HIMYM* reruns. Because a large portion of my socially-alienating humor arsenal is made up of legen—wait for it—and I hope you’re not lactose intolerant because the second half of that word is—DARY—zingers. Except they are not really alienating, because 98.5% of people will laugh.
And that number is an official statistic.
Much like the non-coerced 9.67 million “very bored people” watching HIMYM and the “lot of people” doing their utmost to not talk about the show. Theory: maybe none of your friends watch HIMYM. Or maybe they are a taciturn bunch. Or maybe they just have strange ideas about what constitutes a deep personal secret.
deep personal secret = watching sitcom?
Let’s move on to the (could I call it “crazy”?) assumptions that (a) Ted Mosby has brain damage and (b) at some point in the future, he abducts two children.
A. Could you tell a story that happened twenty-five years in the past and spans eight (plus) years, recalling intricate details of circumstance and conversation, with as much precision as Ted Mosby? The man has an eidetic memory.
So he jumps around a bit. It’s a TV show. There’s such a thing as poetic license.
Ted is romantic and sentimental. He makes grand gestures. He puts his heart on the line. He breaks into Robin’s apartment to serenade her with a cerulean symphony.
Maybe it is insane—but not in the way you think.
Ted is possessed by the insanity of love.
Hear me out. There is a certain point where the cost of love seems to outweigh the benefit. You have to put yourself out there. You have to wait. You have to try and fail, sometimes with a lot of people. You have to take a risk on someone. You have to be vulnerable. You have to give yourself fully and receive wholeheartedly. You have to bear all things, believe all things, hope all things, and endure all things.
And yet, we all look for love. We cannot ever be happy without it. Ted represents our burning thirst and our endless search for love. He keeps going even when it gets hard. Even when it seems like there is no one and nothing around the corner, he keeps looking.
Ted lives the eternal hope that we do not always let ourselves feel, because we are too afraid of getting hurt. We live vicariously through him.
Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results—like watching HIMYM, a show narrated by and about Ted Mosby, attempting to ignore him and—when that fails—continuing to watch the show (maybe next time you’ll like it!)—may be the definition of insanity. But as another inventor said, “I have not failed: I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
Ted: don’t give up.
*For non fans: How I Met Your Mother.