Notes on New York: Grocery Bags

I’ve now lived in New York for 145 days. With every new day, I have revelations and realizations about my favorite NY-based TV shows and films. For example, sometimes, a gag isn’t just a joke, it’s 100-percent based in reality.

Take one of my favorite Liz Lemon stories from 30 Rock: Liz is trying to take control of her personal life, and as she starts cleaning out, redesigning and perfecting her apartment, something happens just outside of her window that is completely out of her control: a Chinese take-out bag gets caught on a tree, and it makes her crazy (like have-a-conversation-with-the-bag crazy).

It's a happy accident that I left the closed-captioning turned on on Netflix...and took the screen cap when the bag said this to Liz.

It’s a happy accident that I left the closed-captioning on. The full quote: “Even your dream apartment can’t protect you from death. I’m not ruining your view. I’m reminding you of your mortality.”

When I saw this episode for the first time 2 years ago, I just thought that this was a wacky thing that they thought fit with the character of Liz Lemon … something that would be funny, fit in the story and let them animate a smiley face. What I didn’t realize is that this grocery-bag-in-tree situation is not just comedy gold, it’s a regular, annoying and creepy occurrence.

It’s been really windy for the past three days. The walk between my apartment and the train sounds like what I imagine walking through a forest full of monkeys sounds like. The first time I head the grocery bags rustling, I kept turning and looking behind me, thinking there was some crazed animal or person tailing me. Then, I realized the noise was coming from above me, and my initial thought was THEY’RE IN THE TREES! THE TREES! …and then I looked up and realized it was plastic bags (In my defense, it was pretty late at night and my imagination tends to run wild once the sun goes down. It’s why I don’t watch scary movies at night.). It makes me crazy enough hearing those bags on my commute, I can only imagine what it would be like right outside my window and out of my reach … actually, I don’t have to imagine it … 30 Rock already ran the algorithms and created “Everything Sunny All the Time.” I’m, like, this close to doing this:

This has been a Note on New York. You may now return to your regularly scheduled programming.


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