Lies Christina Applegate Told Me

So here’s the tl;dr version of my personal sitch right now:

  • Quit job in June 2018 to write
  • *cricket sounds*
  • I’m back at work today

And, in order to avoid dealing with my feelings of guilt and regret about how I’ve spent the last nearly 12 months (I could write a book about all the things I did this year that weren’t writing! Ha!  Hahaha… ha.  Seriously, though, maybe I should.  Would you buy that?  Is that marketable?  AM I VALID? *maniacal weeping*)…

IN ORDER TO AVOID FEELINGS, let’s take a look back at the first time I remember being betrayed by someone’s portrayal of work and what it would entail.

Namely, Stephen Herek’s 1991 underrated classic Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead.



Now this right here?  This is the kind of thing that gets me out of bed in the morning (besides the toddler foot jammed up in my face, that also helps).  This is an nearly perfect example of what makes Charlie chat.  (and yes, I do hate myself a little for typing that, thanks for asking) Let’s look at the check list:

  • B minus to D plus list actors?  Check
    • Bonus points for Josh Charles, Josh Charles-ing it up
    • Plus Danielle Harris and Keith Coogan?  Please.
    • While B minus is probably overly harsh, I’m going to go ahead and slot David Duchovny being uncharacteristically skeezy in this category as well
  • Sassy lady that tries to conform in order to succeed, only to end up needing to rely on said sassiness to fix her conformity’s total bunk up?  Check
  • Untimely death of beautiful young actor that you don’t realize has happened until you Google the cast decades later?  Check
    • I don’t know why, but this is a subject about which I have a disturbing amount of knowledge and unresolved sadness.  Anyone want to pitch into the tip jar for extra therapy?  No?  Okay, moving on.
  • Someone finding their life’s passion in food?  Check
  • Eternally relevant one-liners?  Check
    • See:  everything that comes out of Keith Coogan’s mouth.
  • Someone inexplicably becomes a “success” at their passion with no explanation?  Check

Looking at this list, this should be one of my favorite movies of all time.  It probably doesn’t make the list only because I’m trying to impress someone when making a favorite movie list.  (Again, I got issues, man)

Christina Applegate stars as the eldest sister of a group of trope-ish siblings (the only one missing is The Baby), unexpectedly having to stay home instead of traipsing around Europe with her friends.  Her mother and new boyfriend go off to Australia.  Except, she’s not in charge!  There’s a babysitter!  And she’s mean.  Don’t worry, now she’s dead.  But, you know, shhh, we’re keeping that on the dl.

Through a comedy of errors, they’re left with no money and Applegate’s character goes off to try to get a job to support the kids for the summer.  She tries fast food.  It bombs (but she meets Josh Charles, so, really not a loss).  She fakes a resume and lands a big fashion gig.  More comedy of errors, misunderstandings, and, one of my biggest movie pet peeves, easily repairable and unnecessary lies to ‘loved ones’ all leave her with a lot of ‘splaining to do.  She fixes it all and things end up great-ish.

Even as a kid, I figured that petty cash wasn’t going to be easily accessible at work (and even if it was, MORAL OF THE STORY, kids), but I was looking forward to giant QED reports, printed out and needing collating and organizing and balancing.


Lie.  My work life has been lacking in dot matrix paper since the early ’90s.  And I never had the joy of seeing just reams of it all piled up together with a paperboard cover sheet.

Speaking of, Office Space also gave me false hopes about how many giant reports I’d get to print and organize and cover with the new cover sheets.  For shame.

Christina Applegate also misled me about how easy it would be to date Josh Charles.  Though, admittedly, that worked out for the best for all involved.  But the ’90’s as a whole implied that he’d just be standing around with his dude friends waiting to rescue me from my random, hilarious, sometimes dangerous mess.

If you haven’t watched it in a while, you should.  It’s a nice little slice of Wow, the ’90’s were Super ’90’s, Weren’t They?

And, in case you were wondering…