Your Weekly Dose of EEE #14: Coming to Terms With The Imperfect Final Season of Ted Lasso
And celebrating the end of a great sci-fi serial
Good Morning, Friends!
I hope you’ve had a good week. We happen to have had some pretty spectacular weather in Massachusetts, and I am looking forward to a late spring/early summer that is neither a total washout like 2021 nor a complete drought like 2022. Something in the middle, please!
It’s been one of those weeks over here, full of meetings and desk work and driving from this place to that, but all in all I feel pretty good about what I’ve been able to accomplish (1,200 words on the novel, as well as beginning a new project) and what I’ll likely get done in my bonus work day today (looking for at least 2k words and a video!). But first, I have some thoughts to share with you.
What’s Exciting Me?
This week, five people reached out to tell me they’d finished (and really enjoyed!) When We Were Mothers. These are friends who got the book last month, or the month before that, or even way back in January when it came out, and let it naturally rise to the top of their TBR (to-be-read) list. This is super exciting since, as one of them mentioned over Zoom the other day, if they didn’t love it, they wouldn’t have bothered telling me they did. So, that is amazing.
Also exciting is that there are book sales! Not as many (yet) as launch week, but definitely more than in the last few weeks. I’ve change a couple of things, and I think they’re hitting the right places. I can’t wait to start reaching milestones there, too.
If you’d like to help further boost sales, don’t forget to
Review When We Were Mothers on Amazon and Goodreads
Share the book with online and IRL people you think will enjoy it! Feel free to tag @kadilakwrites in your post!
What’s Entertaining Me?
📺 Ted Lasso isn’t over yet (and I’m an episode behind, anyway). But I’m sorry to say that I’m really disappointed with the way this season has sagged in the middle. I make no secret about my love for Ted himself, and for the uplifting tenor of the show and its other characters. But the last couple of episodes I’ve watched have been a train wreck.
Three weeks ago, I would have said that this season was the best yet. Episode 7 of Season 3 was definitely up there with the best episodes of the whole series. But I’m sorry to say that Episodes 8 and 9 were kind of a train wreck. I appreciate that they’re trying to shed light on contemporary social issues like race, immigration, women’s bodily autonomy and privacy, etc., but the content came through as overly didactic and predictable, the dialogue was forced, and everything looked staged. (Yes, I know it’s television and it is all staged. But it’s not supposed to look that way.)
Also, I am just angry that, after being a bitter little jerk and betraying the team and Ted as its manager, Nate (the manager of the rival team) is getting any airtime at all. The season has set up a redemption arc for him, but I don’t want him to be redeemed. The fact that he knows he’s being awful and chooses to do these things anyway makes him just as bad as Rupert, in my mind. Yes, you see glimpses of conscience, but his true values (elevating himself and pushing down others for no reason) have shone through at every opportunity.
I hope the last three episodes can lift the show out of its slump, because it would be a real bummer to end on a low note.
📖 I finished my friend,’s, serial novel, The Memory of My Shadow. I came on about two-thirds of the way through the book, but of course I went back and started from the beginning. And let me tell you, I binged that thing.
This is an artificial-intelligence sci-fi novel about a super-smart woman who suffered a terrible tragedy and spent her entire life trying to both understand what happened and create something that would prevent it from happening again. Eventually she goes too far, and the AI does what we cynics often expect AI to do, developing sentience and a will of its own. I don’t want to spoil anything more, but if you’re a sci-fi geek like me, I bet you’ll like this book—and you can read the first two installments (and lots of Ben’s other creative work) for free at the link above.
🎶Throwback to The Offspring this week. Remember them? (If you don’t, don’t tell me. It’ll just make me feel old.) I heard a song by them at the gym the other day and decided to give a new listen to their debut album, Smash. What a wild, nostalgic ride. I didn’t ever listen to much punk music, but I get the sense The Offspring’s cynicism and criticism of old folks (probably people my current age lol) was a common theme.
I didn’t think much about it when I was 12 and yelling out the lyrics with Dexter (Bryan?) Holland—because of course old folks are morons and our generation of kids has it worse than any generation before it. But looking back, I can see how evergreen the disaffection—and the dialogue—really is. They were talking back then about gun violence, lack of empathy, and mental health. Yeah, I guess I thought they were glorifying it back then. But that’s because I was 12 and didn’t understand their use of language. (“Dog eat dog / Every day / On our fellow man we prey / Dog eat dog / To get by / Hope you like my genocide”? I see now this is a powerful message steeped in sarcasm and cynicism.)
So. Maybe listen to Smash as you’re going about your weekend activities. Do you remember this album from 1994? How have your thoughts about it changed in the last (*gulp*) three decades?
What’s Enlightening Me?
I’m inclined to say, “See above.”
I put on Smash as I started writing the music section, and I’m more than halfway done now. (Yay, short punk songs!) My impression of this album has flipped nearly 180° since I pressed play. And my least favorite song from the 90s is the one speaking most loudly to me right now: “If you take home anything, let it be your will to think. The more cynical you become, the better off you’ll be.” Not that I’m a huge advocate of cynicism, but I do think it’s healthy to ask questions (especially of authority) and take in a broad range of information rather than just accepting what we’re told.
I didn’t expect to be enlightened while writing the actual EEE report, yet here we are.
I hope you have a great weekend, and I’ll see you next week!
When you have an unchanging and unchangable character like Ted Lasso in the center of a show then I think there's a danger of going amok with the supporting characters and especially with plot. I think Ted Lasso did that with the rather clumsy take on social issues, which is a common problem in any fraught political time. I think the artistic reaction to Trump has created some middling art. Overall, I think Ted Lasso was a nimble comedy that got too serious about itself.
Great stuff. Loved the picture here as it just show spring in bloom. Enlightenment comes from different places 🤩