It's not that I've been completely oblivious to the whole "Game of Thrones" phenomenon. I did, after all, used to work for the same company that published George "Really Rad" Martin's books, and when the series came to HBO, I took note, mainly because people wouldn't shut up about it.
I am deliberately slow to embrace trends (please see: lack of Benetton, 1987; the "who's Pearl Jam" conversation with Shawn Staley, 1989; and "four single women are having sex in New York City??", 2001). I still have not watched "Downton Abbey" (and that show sounds right up me olde cobblestone street). I purchase shoes only after three trips to the store and 12 eye rolls from the salesperson. I do not know what "twerking" is. That is my modus operandi. (People still speak Latin, right?)
Since "Game of Thrones" debuted in only 2011, I felt like it wasn't too late to join the party. Which means from here on out, you will refer to me as Lady Tarja of House Chalupa. Thank you.
I watched approximately 30 episodes in 20 days and became immersed, baptized in blood and treachery! I started equating the show with my own life, playing games like WWNSD (What Would Ned Stark Do?), believing leather tunics to be flattering and that if I saw an ugly old man, there was a 90% chance he was an incestuous lecher who would cut my throat if I didn't betroth my first born son to his disgusting daughter.
I wanted everyone to enjoy this world with me, and who better than my husband to share this adventure? I tried very hard to convey the awesomeness of it all, the honor of House Stark, the beauty of Daenerys Targaryen, the cunning of the Lannisters, but he left the room when I told him about the dragon eggs hatching.
So I turned to Twitter, where I knew I would find acceptance and camaraderie. I tweeted "8 episodes into #GameofThrones. Is there a 12 step program for this?" Everyone stay calm, but not only did @GamefThrones favorite my tweet, but so did @Lord_Joffery_! Squeee! Lord Joffery might be the most sadistic, monstrous character ever, but who am I to argue if he says he's the one true king of the Seven Kingdoms? Besides, I'm pretty sure he likes me.
"Game of Thrones" mirrors my own life in so many ways. I go to my bootcamp class ("Game of Moans"), then hit Starbucks ("Game of Scones") and make a quick stop at the bank ("Game of Loans"). It forces me ask tough parental questions, like 'is my child fit to be a king?' (FYI: If you suspect he would behead his future father-in-law, the answer is no.) And of course, sitting on the Iron Throne is at the heart of it all -- JUST LIKE IN MY HOUSE! Please substitute "Iron Throne" for "Porcelain Throne" -- it all comes down to poop, ammaright?
George R.R. Martin bandies around the themes of 'night' and 'winter' -- the symbolism of evil and death hanging over each season -- and I love it. Somewhere in Season 2, the red-headed sorceress Melisandre intones ominously and repeatedly, "The night is dark and full of terrors." Nothing more perfectly expresses how I felt for the first three months of my first son's life. Which leads me to believe that I would probably best be suited for the Night's Watch. In fact, as a mother, I am a member of the Night's Watch. Standing on the great wall of preschool, bedtimes and sticker charts, I'm the only thing standing between civilization and the wild lands. What lies beyond the wall? White Walkers. Zombies. Which are just fancy names for new parents, a breed of people forced to endure the dark night, people who would cut you for some caffeine. Beyond the wall is bitter and frozen -- or maybe I'm just remembering the icy stares from the people next to us at the Cheesecake Factory when the baby wouldn't stop screaming.
Which brings me to the catch phrase of the series, "winter is coming." Dude. Tell me about it. Every October, I'm like Paul Revere yelling, "The flu season is coming! The flu season is coming!" In Martin's epic fantasy, winter can last for years -- remember the five-year winter? I'm in the middle of a seven-year winter myself. I think it's going to end when my younger son either turns 4 or acquires rational thought. I'll keep you posted.
In the meantime, I'm going to sit down with the rest of the nation this spring and watch as "Game of Thrones" returns with Season 5. A glass of Dornish wine and a bowl of snacks in hand, I'm going to make the narrow sea (of my waist) a little wider. I'm going to say hello to my old friends danger, chaos and the unknown! Hello to greed, bloodlust and conniving! Hello to the dwarf on TV -- and careful not to wake the little people down the hall!
I know which king I serve.
And I pay my oath of fealty to Comcast monthly.