Joan of Arcadia
Common Thread

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Luke of Narcadia

As Sars's recaplet informed you, God smote me with technological difficulties for the second time this month, and therefore I am recapping this episode from a tape provided by Sars. I mention this only because I get to have the semi-fascinating experience of seeing the show as it's presented on American television, with CBS promos and American commercials and everything. Rest assured, I'm staying home this Friday night for the finale, hovering over two VCRs, and lighting novenas. Feel free to pray for me, or sacrifice virgins, or whatever your creed would have you do.

Joan and Grace are wandering listlessly through the school library, talking about their upcoming physics test. Joan's blithering about dimensions and begging Grace to come over and help her study. Why doesn't she just get her brainiac brother to help her? I strongly sense Luke can hardly the resist the opportunity to impart geek knowledge, not unlike someone else I could be sitting on the couch with. Grace grabs a book she thinks will help them and they head for a table, only to notice Adam's in the library. They stop short as Grace asks if this is going to be weird. Joan, trying to act blasé, claims they're fine: "People break up all the time and they stay friends…" She sucks in a bunch of air. "Right?" She looks doubtful. Grace: "You are so not fine."

They walk over to their table and sit down. Adam approaches to tell them his boss just called him: "I think I'm getting a promotion." Grace: "Mazel tov, dude!" They glance at Joan, who says, "Cool. We were, um, kinda studying." He asks if it would be weird if he joined them, since this is the only opportunity he has to study. Grace looks at Joan, who keeps her eyes down. Adam: "It would…obviously. It's too soon for that." Well, yeah. Grace tells Joan they could study tonight. Joan reminds her she has to work. Joan grabs her stuff: "You know what? Forget it. I'm fine." She bails. Adam shrugs at Joan: "What's her problem?" What? Come on. It's bad enough that Adam was suddenly written to cheat on Joan with Bonnie…now we're supposed to believe he's so clueless and insensitive that he has no idea why she feels uncomfortable around him? Even if he thought, after they re-exchanged their stuff, that things were a little less ugly, it's not like he could possibly, all of a sudden, have no freaking idea what's eating her. ["Or that he'd be all dishy like he was written here. I should just let this go, probably; it's not like it's getting better." -- Sars] Grace's reaction is a little less incredulous and insulted than mine: "You're not seriously asking me that, are you, dude?" Adam just says, "Whatever," and walks off. Just then Luke swoops up behind Grace to share his happy news: the Sims II is coming out this afternoon. "Wanna help me install it?" Grace vents her annoyance on Luke: "You want a piece of me, too? I am one person, okay? Just one. Uno. So why don't you and everyone else just take care of themselves?" She marches off. Luke, mystified: "Virtual reality's looking good."

Walking home in the rain, Joan passes a young woman, sitting on a park bench under a spotted umbrella…and knitting. Should I take anything from the fact that it's often hard to distinguish God from a mental patient? Knitting God (played by Shelly Cole, Madeline Lynn of Gilmore Girls) is wearing a vest that looks crocheted but is apparently knitted, according to the sort of folks who know about these things and post about them online. She comments as Joan walks behind her: "Awesome pattern, don't you think, Joan?" As long as we're not talking about the one on your vest, which is riding the Retro 101 bus to Funky Station but got off two stops early at the corner of Vintage and Fugly. Joan: "God knits?" Knitting God: "It's a great way to centre yourself when you have to pass the time alone." And my question would be: "God has a lot of free time on her hands?" Joan: "Oh. Subtle reminder that I don't have a boyfriend anymore." She sits down on the wet bench. "Cute. So you want me to be spinster Joan…knitting her way to the grave." Oy. So many times, despite the fact that God is talking to her, Joan can hardly see beyond the end of her own nose. In the first season she was all desperate for a boyfriend; I hope we're not returning to that. Also, get over yourself. You're seventeen, not seventy. Knitting God claims, "Knitting is the new yoga. Very meditative. I knitted this top." Joan's impressed: "No. That is seriously nice. But you're God. I could never do that." Both God and Joan are wearing striped knee socks. Knitting God: "You used to love knitting, remember? When you were eight and reading those Little House on the Prairie books?" When she says "Little House on the Prairie books" she stretches her mouth in this weird way as if to register mild aversion. Stow it, Knitting God. Joan says she tried to make a scarf (heh -- I guess it started early on) but she just made a knotty mess of it. I can certainly relate. In my early attempts at knitting, which mostly consisted of trying to knit things for my Barbie dolls, the tension kept getting tighter and tighter until I eventually couldn't move the yarn at all without breaking it. I am just wound too tight for anything like knitting. Knitting God tells her she can't put too much tension on the arm: "You have to relax, get into the groove." Joan: "I'd look like a total dork knitting. No offense." Not as much of a dork as you look like getting your ass soaked on this park bench. Knitting God cuts to the chase: "You have important work ahead of you. It requires focus and understanding." Joan: "What work?" Of course, just then, the bus comes along and Knitting God takes the opportunity to avoid the question, telling her, "Finish the scarf, Joan," as she boards the bus. Because if there is one thing Joan Girardi needs, it's another scarf. Joan: "But I don't even know where it is anymore!" The bus drives off.

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Joan of Arcadia

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