What Kind of a World Do We Live in When Shows About Mermaids Are Fake?

With any luck, by this time next week, I should be on full summer mode as opposed to the semi-pseudo summer mode I’m on right now. Sure, there’s a lot of grading to be done between now and then, but it’s a lot easier to look on the bright side when the bright side is two months off. Lynnette and Madison visited some of our family members who have passed on Sunday while I was attending graduation. We spent Monday together looking for deals.

Looks like we've all got one thing in common other than our last names.

Looks like we’ve all got one thing in common other than our last names.

"Stop looking at me, red fish!"

“Stop looking at me, red fish!”

It looks as if what has been a gradual development has finally crested. It would appear that Madison has inherited her mother’s and father’s shared affinity for footwear. The Nordstrom Half-Yearly Sale is dedicated to women and children, kind of like the Titanic’s life boats – and as such, there were racks on racks of discounted footwear for both demographics.

Madison scored a pair of red glitter-covered Vans slip-ons just the day before, and she was at it again yesterday, trying on any shoe/sandal that featured any combination of pink or flowers or glitter. She’s such a girl. She scored a pair of Toms (to replace the Abby pair she’s sadly outgrown) in neon pink with black swirls. There is glitter all over the pair, which means the landing at the bottom of our stairs will be covered with a mixture of dirt, sand, and glitter. “There’s fur inside! It keeps my feet warm!” Madison said of the Toms. Well, it’s only a matter of time before that fur becomes tinged with the smell of sour vinegar feet.

As Lynnette waited in line to pay for Madison’s new kicks, the Goob took up coloring in front of the salt water tank in the kids’ shoe section. A red fish seemed particular interested in Madison. I walked over when I heard Mad shout “Shot looking at me!” I thought she was talking to another human, but it turns out she was speaking to this red fish that hovered near the tank’s bottom directly in front of Mad. It would stare at Mad head-on, then turn its body to fix one large black eye on Madison. “I think he likes you,” I said. “I think he wants me to feed him,” Mad replied. We split the difference and Mad used my phone to take this picture of him.

*whispering* "Fawn-dawn-go!"

*whispering* “Fawn-dawn-go!”

It’s disappointing, but by no means surprising that Madison’s sick again. She’s got a smoky-raspy voice that she can’t get enough of hearing. In the car yesterday, she tried to sing along with the radio and there were a few moments when she went completely silent. I looked in the rear view mirror and saw her smiling to herself. She get a real kick out of it.

Additionally, she’s prone to bouts of listlessness. She’ll look utterly helpless for 15-minute periods, then spring back into life just as quickly. As she ate lunch at CPK yesterday, she was concerned about the presence of bee that had made its way into the restaurant but could not find its way out. After she had expended all of that nervous energy, she fell into a bit of a rut. She ate slowly (like always), and then without any kind of provocation, shot up in her seat, cupped her hand near her mouth and whispered “Fawn-Dawn-Go!” at me. I had her do it again so I have proof of her clownishness.

Just gotta get me to the 5S/6, or whatever it is Apple's going to release in the fall.

Just gotta get me to the 5S/6, or whatever it is Apple’s going to release in the fall.

The main reason we went to Ala Moana was to get my phone’s battery replaced. I had gone there a few months ago with concerns about the battery life, but was assured by a woman who checked my phone that it was fine. In recent weeks, however, I noticed that I could go from 95% to 65% in about ten minutes if I was playing a game on my phone. The guy at the Genius Bar did a diagnostic test on my phone which confirmed my suspicions. In a stroke of bad luck, he looked over my warranty information and discovered that it had lapsed by seven days. Luckily, however, they decided to honor my warranty anyway. My iPhone 4 has a new battery. It’s perfect timing right before our trip to California. Also, it just has to get me to the fall, when Apple will release whatever iteration of the iPhone they’ve got planned. I’ve been looking outside of the iPhone at Windows Phones and Droids. If anyone has a Nokia 928, let me know how you like it. I’m trying to consider all my options here.

If I ever come across a mermaid, I'm going to punch it in the gills just because of this stupid show.

If I ever come across a mermaid, I’m going to punch it in the gills just because of this stupid show.

6

“C’mon, you guys, you’re supposed to protect me and love me.” -Abby

Granted, I don’t watch a lot of television anymore, so I suppose I can’t really speak to the type of programming that airs in this climate. If I do watch TV, it’s sports or some syndicated crime drama. Somehow, however, Lynnette finds these really odd documentaries on obscure subjects like aliens, haunted historical sites, and presidents. Well, we can add mermaids to that list.

Discovery was running a program called Mermaids: The Body Found. I suppose because it was on Discovery, we approached the show with an open mind. About 4 minutes in, though, I was uttering words like “terrible,” “garbage,” and “horseshit.” I posted about it on Facebook and one of my former students forwarded me a link about the show. Apparently, it’s not even a horseshit documentary. It’s complete fiction, which is somehow worse. Whenever we watch things like this on The History Channel, Discovery, or Animal Planet, part of the fun is marveling and how nuts the people on the show seem to be. Maybe they really do believe that the ghost of General Custer resides in their basement and rides the washing machine at night. I don’t know. But Mermaids: The Body Found is insincere, it takes that format, employs actors as the nutjobs, then pieces together shitty CGI as “proof” of the possibility that mermaids exist. It even follows the show with text that relays information about the present circumstances regarding mermaid culture and supposed government interference.

When I told Lynnette the entire thing was fake, she was crestfallen. It wasn’t that she had believed in the existence of mermaids, it was more that she was having a great time scoffing at the scientists (actors) and their claims. “I didn’t believe them,” she said. “I know, sweetheart, it’s a terrible, terrible joke,” I said. Maybe this kind of stunt programming is perfect for the times. It’s completely untrue and doesn’t try very hard to hide that fact. All it really does, is grab attention for the network, which is an end itself, I suppose. It was so popular that they produced a sequel even after it was revealed as fiction. Apparently there’s a market for a fake show that everyone knows is fake. But there is a downside.

Screw you, Discovery Channel and Mermaids: The Body Found. My wife will never be able to enjoy a stupid documentary about a conspiracy theory bolstered by flimsy evidence ever again. How dare you take that away from her.

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