“What are you doing tonight?” A typical conversation with my parents starts.
“Well, I don’t know. Raymond is on.”
Did you know that if you have basic cable, you can watch at least 5
episodes of “Everybody Loves Raymond” a day if you want? I have seen every
single episode, multiple times. I love the one where Debra and the kids go on vacation, leaving Ray home alone. Or the one where Debra makes fish instead of Turkey for Thanksgiving. Oftentimes, I can recite certain lines on cue.
Why, then, do I continue to watch it? Why do I keep it on as background noise as I do the dishes (Yes, I DO do dishes), or browse Facebook? It’s a concept that probably doesn’t make much sense to most people.
I’ve searched and found the answer deep inside myself. For me, I guess,
Everybody Loves Raymond is not just a show, but a fond memory. I had to be
in middle school, maybe younger, and I remember the new episodes came on
Monday nights. I used to sit with my mom in bed and we would watch it,
laughing at Raymond and his shenanigans.
Later on, I used to ride my bike through town, along the river down to my
Grandma and Grandpa’s house on Monday nights. Grandma always made us some
sort of snack, and we would watch the new episodes of Everybody Loves
Raymond together. We would talk about life/school, whatever, all the while
inviting the Barones into our family room.
My Grandpa would come home from his job at the local police station in the
middle of the show, and sometimes he would join us in laughter.
After Raymond, my Dad would come over, sit and chat with my Grandpa for a
bit before tossing my bike in the trunk and driving me back home.
When I went to college, Raymond was a comforting constant. Whenever I
missed home, somehow having Everybody Loves Raymond on in the background
eased the homesickness I felt. Today it remains instead of comfort food,
It serves as a reminder that despite where I am living, where I am working,
who I am dating, who I am fighting with, or who I am hanging out with, I am still Megan. And no matter what kind of a day I had, I can always come home, turn on Everybody Loves Raymond, and let the memories flood back.