A couple years ago I made the not so difficult decision to exit a crummy job. Maybe you have found yourself there before. But hopefully not. What I bet you didn’t know is how I spent my first three weeks of unemployment. I watched Cheers. Let me re-phrase. I watched eleven seasons (272 episodes) all day and all night for three weeks of non-stop Cheers. And now you know.
Hindsight should I have been making contacts or stressed about where I would come up with the money for next month’s rent. Well, yeah. I probably should have been doing a lot of more productive things with my time like updating cover letters and other relevant work experience. I did neither of those things. My friend said I didn’t come out of my room for weeks. And she was probably right.
Cheers first aired in the early 80’s and centered around a bar in downtown Boston. Sam “Mayday” Malone former Red Sox player and recovering alcoholic owned Cheers. He had great full set of hunkish 80’s hair and a five year long love-hate relationship with know-it-all Diane Chambers. The show revolved around the relationship he built with his employees and the customers who came into his bar. Customers who were more like friends and where everybody knows your name ( a popular 8th grade graduation song). I had a place like that too. There is something comforting about a local bar. I never found it in my new neighborhood. There are plenty of bars in Chicago that serve vodka sodas. But only a handful out there where they don’t need to ask what you are having. They just know. In college we would spend many nights at the local bar shooting darts, drinking a pitcher and reading for class the next day. My drink of choice was a Miller light with green olives. Don’t knock it til you’ve tried it, Chicago. I do realize the more conventional method of studying would be to hit up the library. However, we all went on to graduate and build up successful careers.
The series finale ended where it began, and where it had been for eleven seasons, at Cheers. Sam is torn up about what he wants to do with his life. He is alone, not married, no kids. He just has this bar. In the final scene Norm says “Sammy you can’t leave your one true love”. Sam looks confused and Norm responds with “just think about it”. Norm walks out of the bar and Sam turns off the lights. He knows who his true love is. It is Cheers.
A man knocks on the door of the bar.
Sorry, we’re closed. Series ends.
I turned off my computer and the harsh reality hit that I was not only jobless but clueless. I had spent four years at an expensive liberal arts school studying political science, two years at a well paying paralegal job with benefits, and I ditched that to spend the next three weeks of my life watching a t.v show that had already been off the air for twenty years? I never told my parents. But then it hit me, I knew what my true love was. I had known it all along but was afraid to actually hear my self say it outloud. Or think about the financial repercussions to come. I think deep down we all are. Days later I applied to go back to school to be an Interior Designer and have gone part time for two years. I will graduate next summer. I went across the street to my Cheers bar to tell everyone the good news.
Nooooooooorrrm! How you doing today Mr. Peterson?