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S06.E16: Skippy And The Knowledge Hole


paulvdb

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With family members who have ADD and who have struggled with addiction, this one really hit home. I actually teared up during Bonnie's share because it was so familiar. I didn't find the humor of this episode to be funny at all, though.

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Not one of their funnier episodes, but definitely relatable between the realization well into adulthood that there was a previously unknown common denominator in seemingly random and self-sabotaging behavior and the horror of suddenly being confronted with change in a predictably comfortable safe space.  Part of the deal of being a regular at a restaurant like that is that you know what you're getting and don't ever have to devote mental space to thinking about it.

I increasingly love what Tammy adds to the dynamic of the group now that the show has wisely scaled her back a bit.  I expected Bonnie to fail, but I honestly wouldn't have been surprised to see that she had distracted the entire row into failing with her.

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5 hours ago, sleepysuzy said:

With family members who have ADD and who have struggled with addiction, this one really hit home. I actually teared up during Bonnie's share because it was so familiar.

I teared up when I saw that Tammy and Wendy were tearing up along with Bonnie. It was a great moment.

Thank goodness Christy is quitting smoking!

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My husband, who's been an on and off smoker for forever, commented that they got the economics of trying to quit right.  Yes, buying a pack or two at a time can quickly add up before you know it too as Christy found out, but most common aides to help quitting like nicotine gum or patches can be prohibitively expensive in large enough amounts to truly be effective to someone who's really hooked but already nickle and diming their way through life to the point where it feels cheaper to just keep smoking.  The rest of the girls pitching in to buy Christy a bag full of gum may be what she needs to get her over the hump.

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I think it's a little contrived to assign some new ailment/syndrome to Bonnie this far into the run of the series. Seemed like an attempt to either white wash the character or else just an issue one of the writers wanted to talk about for personal reasons. Very random.

I think the idea behind the nicotine gum is that while it's expensive you aren't using it forever, just to get you over that first week or so. As an ex-smoker myself I can attest to the fact that not everything works for everyone though. Some of the most common stop-smoking aids simply didn't work for me, and health insurance usually does not cover Chantix or other prescribed aids. And that shit is REALLY expensive.

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Kudos to Wendy for suggesting ADD (I just wish someone had thanked her or at least acknowledged her contribution, especially since it turned out to be such a hugely important thing for Bonnie).  Didn't she also help setting up an appointment for Bonnie to be tested?

Also kudos to her for bringing the nicotine gum for Christie.

More Wendy, please.

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2 hours ago, AnimeMania said:

Usually printing new menus doesn't involve a wholesale adding or removing of items on the menu or changing the ingredients in the items on the menu.

Unless the restaurant also got new management... when a new menu style comes with changes in the food as well.

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4 hours ago, AnimeMania said:

Usually printing new menus doesn't involve a wholesale adding or removing of items on the menu or changing the ingredients in the items on the menu.

I don't think it was just the physical menus which changed, but the actual food being served.  Like what Chili's has done over the last year - which, btw, made me stop eating there because they got rid of most of what I liked, and their "homemade" barbecue sauce is now just nasty, slightly spicy ketchup.

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16 hours ago, AnimeMania said:

I thought as Bonnie was getting closer and closer to the door before the test, she was going to run out of the room.

8 hours ago, nodorothyparker said:

I expected Bonnie to fail, but I honestly wouldn't have been surprised to see that she had distracted the entire row into failing with her.

I thought switching seats at first was going to have something to do the with results. I wondered if they had already signed in/had assigned seats and switching seats was going to cause accusations of cheating or trying to get around the system. Once she switched to a different row, I realized my first guess was wrong. 

5 hours ago, iMonrey said:

I think it's a little contrived to assign some new ailment/syndrome to Bonnie this far into the run of the series.

I don't think it's that contrived. When Bonnie was growing up people weren't as aware of ADD/ADHD and people weren't tested for learning disabilities as often as they are now. Also, girls/women are less likely to be diagnosed with ADD/ADHD to begin with. 

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7 hours ago, nodorothyparker said:

My husband, who's been an on and off smoker for forever, commented that they got the economics of trying to quit right.  Yes, buying a pack or two at a time can quickly add up before you know it too as Christy found out, but most common aides to help quitting like nicotine gum or patches can be prohibitively expensive in large enough amounts to truly be effective to someone who's really hooked but already nickle and diming their way through life to the point where it feels cheaper to just keep smoking.  The rest of the girls pitching in to buy Christy a bag full of gum may be what she needs to get her over the hump.

Colorado Quit Line will give you gum and patches for free.

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I diddnt mind this episode. Pretty much actually. I liked the last episode too. Seeing Jill blow it with that cop guy. Was unfortunate I liked his character. But seeing Christie go through withdrawal symptoms over giving up smoking. Was believable, funny, and made me feel sympathy for her. That she was trying to do the responsibile thing. Although nicotine’s can get very expensive. So watch this space. 

Other plot. I agree I don’t think it’s all that contrived. Most likely ADHD ailments weren’t diagnosed as much in the 70s. I laughed at the scene between Bonnie and Tammy. When they were going for their GED. Trying to figure out how many years it’s been since 1975 lol. Although they seem to be phased out Adam a bit. Only getting a couple of scenes. I hope he stays but might be unlikely. 

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On 2/22/2019 at 9:19 AM, iMonrey said:

I think it's a little contrived to assign some new ailment/syndrome to Bonnie this far into the run of the series. Seemed like an attempt to either white wash the character or else just an issue one of the writers wanted to talk about for personal reasons. Very random.

Given Bonnie's established history, she fits an extremely common pattern. She spent most of her youth in foster care. My understanding is there can be a lot of overlap in behaviors between children dealing with trauma and with ADD, and it can be hard to tell which is the case. If you're in FC, you've experienced trauma. So even if one social worker, one foster parent, one teacher -as she said in her share -thought to have her evaluated, they still might not have come to the diagnosis. Add to that girls are much less likely to be diagnosed (and that was even more true decades ago when Bonnie was growing up), it's a totally realistic scenario. It's unfortunately also realistic what she was doing at the end blaming every small little thing on her ADD, but that's more of a character issue.

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I know adults who are OBVIOUSLY undiagnosed with ADD, or dyslexia or other learning disabilities. When we were kids, there just wasn't an awareness of this issue. You were "disobedient" or "a troublemaker" or "lazy" or "a bad kid". End of story. Many of these people are incredibly annoying to deal with, and have trouble keeping jobs or relationships, even if they aren't substance abusers-- but a lot of them do use various drugs to cope. There is a huge swath of population that simply did not get help when it would have made a difference, and are so used to thinking of themselves as fuck ups that it's practically their identity at this point. Some are defiant about it "I'm a fuck up and proud! All rules are for suckers!" and some are self-hating "I'm a loser, I can't do anything right." I think Bonnie's story is perfectly credible. I really like that this show continues to explore different angles on addiction and recovery. It's a way more complex problem than is generally considered, and here we are with a bloody sitcom that keeps peeling away the layers.

Edited by possibilities
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2 hours ago, possibilities said:

I know adults who are OBVIOUSLY undiagnosed with ADD, or dyslexia or other learning disabilities. When we were kids, there just wasn't an awareness of this issue. You were "disobedient" or "a troublemaker" or "lazy" or "a bad kid". End of story.

"Hyperactive" was a common diagnosis and sometimes given ritalin. And yes, it was usually boys.

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I think the show established Christy had Violet when Christy was 17. Violet was 16 in S1 I think. So Christy should be 39 now. I think the show also said Bonnie had Christy when Bonnie was 16. So Bonnie should be 55. So whatever that makes her.

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8 hours ago, kariyaki said:

Well, I'm talking about Bonnie's. Maybe. What the hell generation is she again? Baby boomer?

Bonnie is the start of Gen-X. She's part of the cohort that most likely would not have been tested or diagnosed with ADD or something similiar. 

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On 2/23/2019 at 4:19 AM, iMonrey said:

I think it's a little contrived to assign some new ailment/syndrome to Bonnie this far into the run of the series. Seemed like an attempt to either white wash the character or else just an issue one of the writers wanted to talk about for personal reasons. Very random.

I think the idea behind the nicotine gum is that while it's expensive you aren't using it forever, just to get you over that first week or so. As an ex-smoker myself I can attest to the fact that not everything works for everyone though. Some of the most common stop-smoking aids simply didn't work for me, and health insurance usually does not cover Chantix or other prescribed aids. And that shit is REALLY expensive.

I agree, it wasn't very funny either. Having her sit there and blame just about everything on ADD was pretty pathetic. We haven't seen any real evidence of ADD in her prior either. Simply being a screw up isn't enough to brand someone as ADD. Doesn't matter knowing how these shows work it will be forgotten about in the next couple of eps anyway. 

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Add to the Bonnie grew  up in the foster care system so it is likely any behavior issues she had was just labeled as being a bad kid.  I doubt anyone took too much interest in digging deeper.

Edited by Chaos Theory
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22 hours ago, possibilities said:

I know adults who are OBVIOUSLY undiagnosed with ADD, or dyslexia or other learning disabilities. When we were kids, there just wasn't an awareness of this issue. You were "disobedient" or "a troublemaker" or "lazy" or "a bad kid". End of story. Many of these people are incredibly annoying to deal with, and have trouble keeping jobs or relationships, even if they aren't substance abusers-- but a lot of them do use various drugs to cope. There is a huge swath of population that simply did not get help when it would have made a difference, and are so used to thinking of themselves as fuck ups that it's practically their identity at this point. Some are defiant about it "I'm a fuck up and proud! All rules are for suckers!" and some are self-hating "I'm a loser, I can't do anything right." I think Bonnie's story is perfectly credible. I really like that this show continues to explore different angles on addiction and recovery. It's a way more complex problem than is generally considered, and here we are with a bloody sitcom that keeps peeling away the layers.

I have dyslexia and dyscalculia.  I wasn't diagnosed until right before 12th grade.  Early 90's.  I was placed in the gifted program in 2nd grade for everything except math and science, and was reading well above grade level.  Conventional wisdom in the late 70's/early 80's when I started showing issues with math was that you can't be gifted and learning disabled, so I was labeled as "lazy".  They told me that because I didn't like math or science, I just didn't try and didn't want to do it.  It was a math and science teacher who banded together to get me tested, leaving behind years of bad grades.

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8 hours ago, Morlock said:

. Having her sit there and blame just about everything on ADD was pretty pathetic. 

However, it is unfortunately very realistic. I have worked with plenty of people who think they can blame every screw-up on some contrived condition they claim they can't control. "I couldn't answer the phone because I have [insert name of illness here]." The real illness is just plain laziness. It is also very common in addicts. "It isn't my fault I got addicted to Percocet. It's a disease." They must of had someone force-feeding them Percocet. How else could you devoid yourself of any responsibility?

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My point is that we haven't really seen any evidence that Bonnie has ADD until this episode. We're six seasons in and not once has anyone speculated that perhaps Bonnie might have ADD based on her behavior. Plenty of people are commenting about personal experiences with being diagnosed later in life, presumably those people recognize the signs. At some point in six seasons, someone, at least one person, might have asked, "Do you think she might have ADD?" Nobody has. This is just out of the blue.

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1 hour ago, eel2178 said:

However, it is unfortunately very realistic. I have worked with plenty of people who think they can blame every screw-up on some contrived condition they claim they can't control. "I couldn't answer the phone because I have [insert name of illness here]." The real illness is just plain laziness. It is also very common in addicts. "It isn't my fault I got addicted to Percocet. It's a disease." They must of had someone force-feeding them Percocet. How else could you devoid yourself of any responsibility?

Oh for sure. I know people who blame their bad choices on all sorts of things. In terms of the show and Bonnie it just came from left field and I doubt the story line will even continue. Ironic in a sense given it is about ADD, see what I did there?

1 hour ago, iMonrey said:

My point is that we haven't really seen any evidence that Bonnie has ADD until this episode. We're six seasons in and not once has anyone speculated that perhaps Bonnie might have ADD based on her behavior. Plenty of people are commenting about personal experiences with being diagnosed later in life, presumably those people recognize the signs. At some point in six seasons, someone, at least one person, might have asked, "Do you think she might have ADD?" Nobody has. This is just out of the blue.

I agree. It's one of those pointless things they throw into a show and chances are we will never hear about it again. The problem is it has still disrupted and altered the character. 

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16 hours ago, Sarah 103 said:

Bonnie is the start of Gen-X. She's part of the cohort that most likely would not have been tested or diagnosed with ADD or something similiar. 

gen-x? or baby boomer? irl isn't she over 60?

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6 hours ago, iMonrey said:

My point is that we haven't really seen any evidence that Bonnie has ADD until this episode. We're six seasons in and not once has anyone speculated that perhaps Bonnie might have ADD based on her behavior. Plenty of people are commenting about personal experiences with being diagnosed later in life, presumably those people recognize the signs. At some point in six seasons, someone, at least one person, might have asked, "Do you think she might have ADD?" Nobody has. This is just out of the blue.

I think there have been signs that could be attributed to ADD. She frequently is not paying any attention to what the other women are saying. I’ve just always attributed it to her selfishness but I could see it being a symptom of ADD. 

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On 2/22/2019 at 12:26 PM, treeofdreams said:

Kudos to Wendy for suggesting ADD (I just wish someone had thanked her or at least acknowledged her contribution, especially since it turned out to be such a hugely important thing for Bonnie).  Didn't she also help setting up an appointment for Bonnie to be tested?

Also kudos to her for bringing the nicotine gum for Christie.

More Wendy, please.

Yes, more Wendy, particularly since we're getting too much Tammy.  Six seasons in we know virtually nothing about Wendy.  She cries a lot, is a good Nurse, and has a lot of roommates.  That's it.  We see Tammy get laid, but Wendy only occasionally mentions male companionship.  The character deserves a stand-alone episode, at least.

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On ‎02‎/‎24‎/‎2019 at 4:52 PM, kariyaki said:

Well, I'm talking about Bonnie's. Maybe. What the hell generation is she again? Baby boomer?

I'm roughly two years younger than Bonnie.  My generation was most definitely not generally tested for ADHD, especially not girls.  Students who would now be tested for it were just considered ill-behaved, troublemakers, etc., then.

Edited to note that although Allison Janney is 59, I think her character is a few years younger.

Edited by proserpina65
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12 hours ago, Dani said:

I think there have been signs that could be attributed to ADD. She frequently is not paying any attention to what the other women are saying. I’ve just always attributed it to her selfishness but I could see it being a symptom of ADD. 

I have seen it too, but perhaps it's because I'm LD that I notice the traits.  She's so easily distracted, never pays attention to anyone else, talks over people, half-asses things without thinking them through, etc.

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They've established that Christy is 40 (or maybe 41 by now), so Bonnie should be 57/58. That would make sense with her and Tammy being in class together in 1975 - they were supposed to be early high-school age when they were in that group home together.

That places her in late Boomer territory.

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19 hours ago, kariyaki said:

Bonnie is right on the line. She could be classified as either a Baby Boomer or Generation X. Christy is definitely Generation X, though.

1 hour ago, Blakeston said:

They've established that Christy is 40 (or maybe 41 by now), so Bonnie should be 57/58. That would make sense with her and Tammy being in class together in 1975 - they were supposed to be early high-school age when they were in that group home together.

That places her in late Boomer territory.

Demographics is not an exact science. I have heard people say the Baby Boom ends in 1960 or 1965. I tend to go with the earlier date because there are so many major events that shaped the boomer generation, and someone born in 1965 would barely remember them. Someone born in 1960 would at least have some vague memories of 1968 and might be able to understand why what was happening was important. Also, by 1965 many of the children born would have had boomers as parents. (person born in 1945, who marries and has kids at age 20 would make it 1965). 

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1 hour ago, Sarah 103 said:

Demographics is not an exact science. I have heard people say the Baby Boom ends in 1960 or 1965. 

I've always been told the baby boom ended in 1963 when birth control pills went on the market. It was definitely true where I grew up. I was born the end of 1961. We had three first-grade classes my year. The year behind me had only two. 

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On 2/25/2019 at 5:21 PM, kariyaki said:

Bonnie is right on the line. She could be classified as either a Baby Boomer or Generation X. Christy is definitely Generation X, though.

Yep. I’m September of 64. Last three months of the boomers. Gen X is something I’ve never been associated with or relate to, we weren’t tested for ADD in grade school. 69-78. 

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Just FYI The Baby Boomer generation is in two parts: 1945-1955 (flower children, hippies and Vietnam) and then 1955-1965 (Disco and cocaine).  I was born in 1960 and kids were not tested for ADD in elementary school.  They were just dumb and unruly.  Sad.

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 I honestly wouldn't have been surprised to see that she had distracted the entire row into failing with her.

That's so Bo! (Did Adam ever get his tattoo finished?)

As for learning disabilities/behavior problems/generations, I think a lot of good points have been brought up here: If you consider the Baby Boom to have ended in 1965, then Bonnie is on the cusp (and Allison Janney is a Boomer!) 

And yes, boys were more often diagnosed with behavior disorders than girls, and not nearly as much in the '60s and early '70s. And a kid with behavioral and emotional issues like Bonnie, bouncing around the foster system, would most likely never have been referred to a social worker or shrink. So an adult diagnosis of ADHD is quite likely...and yes, from an online survey. 

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