Freaks and Geeks

*Other posts about this scene. with-bill.html – and.html 

On the recommendation of my friend Keira i searched Freaks and Geeks on youtube. I’ve been watching it all week. The show ran one season, 1999 to 2000. It took place in the 80’s, kids in high school, their families and friends. I was in high school in the 80’s so a lot of the show resonates for me. Not sure why i’m writing about it, but i feel like crying when i think about this character Bill played by actor Martin Starr. He comes home from school one day and goes into the fridge. There doesn’t seem to be alot of food. He grabs some processed cheese and some bread and makes himself a grilled cheese sandwich. He puts his food on a tray and starts watching Gary Shandling. He’s laughing his head off, food is coming out of his mouth, but he’s laughing, and i am crying. He is one of my favourite characters on the show. He is physically the most geeky of the geeks, but he is by far the funniest, so much his own person, not even trying to fit, i love him for it. In the show he is raised by his mom who is a waitress and former exotic dancer, his dad is absent, and his mom has started dating his gym teacher. So why does Bill make me cry? I think its the brokenness that makes me cry, the eating alone, the not fitting and all the suffering he goes through because he doesn’t fit. I’ve had so many conversations lately about the brokenness of families and relationships. Kids who don’t want to see their parents and parents who don’t want to see their kids, siblings that don’t talk to each other, people escaping each other, ending up alone, eating alone, watching other people eating alone on a screen and crying.

I wouldn’t have qualified as a geek or a freak in high school, somewhere in the middle i guess. Always trying to avoid boxes. I have blended, i could fit anywhere, with freaks or geeks, developers or addicts, no one knows where i stand. I’m like tofu, i can be whatever people need me to be. I don’t want to be tofu. Maybe i am just Bill on the inside, awkward, a bit of a freak and a geek, thinks Bill Murray is one of the funniest guys around, is sad, but sweet, smart, weird, warm and generous, even to the prick who almost killed him sticking peanuts in his sandwich.


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