dreadedcandiru2 (dreadedcandiru2) wrote,

Elly versus herself: a study in self-defeating behavior.

As we've seen, a lot of the conflict Elly has with her family is the amount of free time she has to pursue her own self-interests. John's need to have an unpaid domestic servant means that she has to rush home at a certain time of day, Mike's need to have a mother who wants to pay attention to him means that she always ends up screaming threats at him for doing the "I know you're busy but I need to talk NOW" dance and Lizzie's need to feel loved means that she has a wriggling little barnacle clinging to her when she needs to concentrate on something. That being said, you end up asking a question that might drive Lynn as batty as Mike's constant Mom-mom-momming does Elly: "Why doesn't Elly work on her column for the Valley Voice when nobody is in the way?"

The reason that Elly would probably stand there showing us John's handywork is that we'd be asking her to let the housework slide and thus expose herself to criticism from her family; after all, we do have proof that the only time they notice that she does work her ass off is when she hasn't so she does have something of a point. What she doesn't realize is that even if John didn't take a sick pride in looking helpless and didn't expect her to do everything, her bellowing at him for not doing things exactly how she would would kill any interest he might have in helping out. The same thing tends to go for the kiddies also.

We'd also be asking her to not have a social life; what she means by this is that she wouldn't be able to gossip with one of the two friends she has about how the other one is living her life all wrong. Heck, we'd even be asking her to miss out on her story for the day and that can't happen. It doesn't matter that the beautiful thing about soaps is that you can miss a year and catch right back up again at the end of the episode, she can't miss a scene.

This, therefore, mandates that, just as her attempts to sew her own clothes collide with Mike's need to have attention be paid, she's gotta type her article when he's underfoot. What it also means is that she's the proof of something Parkinson said about work expanding to fill the time allowed; since she has all day to live her life, she ends each one prostrated by exhaustion. Were she actually busy, she'd have more spare time.
Tags: elly versus the real world

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