jessica tholmer
May 20, 2013 5:00 am

I am here and ready to admit that I am a soap opera watcher. That’s right, you guys. I have been watching Days of Our Lives since I was eight years old–back in the day when Marlena Evans was possessed by the devil. You see, my mom wouldn’t let me watch when I initially wanted to (when Sami stole her sister Belle because she was jealous? Probably?) because it was “too inappropriate” for my age, but I will never forget the day when she was like, “Jess! Come here! I think you’d like this devil possession storyline on my show.” Yeah, along the same parenting lines of the Rugrats being the only show we weren’t allowed to watch. “They’re a bad influence, those babies throwing their bottles at the camera!” But you know, the documentary called Killing in a Small Town was educational.

I wish I was kidding. Welcome to my childhood. Oh, Mom.

That being said, my best friend and I bonded in the seventh grade over soap opera storylines. Though we touched on General Hospital, there was nothing quite like Days. To this day, though she lives in Pittsburgh and I live in Bellingham, Washington, there is a large chunk of our text messaging, facebooking, and gchatting dedicated to the fictional characters of “Salem.”

And yes, we are both single. Line up, guys!

Everything I Need to Know I Learned From Days of Our Lives

1. Don’t lie about the father of your child.
Everyone lies about their baby daddy on this show. EVERYONE. Everyone lies so much that I genuinely have no idea who the dad of anyone is.

Me: Isn’t he like…kind of related to him?
BFF: Hahaha, he’s his dad!

Text message conversation from the other day. Oh come on, I barely know who my dad is, how can I keep track of everyone else’s?

2. Beware of randomly tuning into a soap opera.
Though I have been watching Days for a million years and can usually catch back up right away, my friend group has a running joke because one of us (Megan, a non-soap watcher) tuned into Days one day during something that we call the Paris massacre.  John Black and Victor Kiriakis both were killed, though they both weren’t really killed because…

3. The dead can always come back.
And not can always come back, I mean will. John has died like a billion times. I think Victor has, as well, and this one time, he was in a coma for like years and my mom and I used to call him the Magic 8 Ball because everyone used to come and talk to him about their problems and he wouldn’t respond because he was…in a coma. It was weird.

I named my phone “Stefano” because if it died or was lost or stolen or kidnapped, I guess, chances are he would come back to me. Guess what?! It’s happened twice in a year! Stefano has held true to his name.

4. Interrupt weddings only if it is really important.
…like if someone is lying about the father of their child!

Like Sami and Austin. Sami tried to get Austin to love her for literally my entire life, but he loved Carrie (her sister) and then she lied about him being the father of her son (Will) even though it was his half-brother’s kid (Lucas) and then she finally got Austin to “love her” and agree to marry her and then at the wedding, Carrie burst in and put a stop to it! And I think this only happened once, but it seems like it happened a bunch of times. I think I get confused because Sami ruined Carrie and Austin‘s wedding with the announcement that she was pregnant with Austin’s kid (though as I just mentioned, she was lying). So it really seemed like the same thing, but it wasn’t.

Anyway, I think the reason I have a hard time watching a TV show where stuff just works out the first time around is because of Days of Our Lives.

PS I’m still team Carrie and Austin.
PPS When I say “watching a TV show,” I mean “participating in my real life,” as well.
PPS I’ve never been the “dream about my wedding” type, but when I was a little girl, I wanted to wear the dress Carrie wears at her wedding-that-didn’t-happen because she sounded like a waterfall when she walked.

5. Always use hideous nicknames for your lover.
Bo and Hope, one of the longest lasting couples on Days (until now because Bo isn’t on the show, I guess?) were a couple I wanted to really love, but I could never get past the whole “Fancy Face” thing.

Granted, they were always pretty nauseating, though maybe I was jealous of Hope because of they way I feel about Peter Reckell.

Okay but the lesson here is…don’t call your lover/wife/girlfriend/fiance(e) “Fancy Face,” though “Doc” is adorable.

6. Traditions are important.
One of the sweetest parts of Days is the Horton family Christmas traditions, and the show lovingly pays tribute to Alice and Tom every year when they all hang those adorable handmade ornamental balls on the tree. Every ornament has the name of a family member on it, so yes as you can imagine, there are like a million balls on that tree. I really, really want to make this a tradition with my own family one day, but since I don’t want to get married or have kids, I would probably just write the names of the Days characters on them. Or at least make one for Alison Sweeney, my favorite woman alive.

7. Kids can age however they want.
Sometimes kids stay kids forever like Will, Sami and Lucas’ son, didn’t “grow up” to teenage age until very recently, which is pretty accurate, but Sean, Bo and Hope’s son, grew up to be the same age as Belle, John and the late Isabelle’s daughter, even though she was definitely a baby when he was kicking it at summer camp every five minutes at age 11 or something. And I don’t know, something similar happened with Abby, Jack and Jennifer’s daughter. They aged her really awkwardly for storyline purposes multiple times throughout the show, and I actually have no idea how old she is now.

But let’s be real: this happens on a lot of television shows. Little Nicky, anyone?

8. Watch out for mind control.
Like when Marlena was possessed, or when Stefano controlled Hope’s mind via satellite, making her believe she was Princess Gina. And actually, I am pretty sure Marlena has been under Stefano’s mind control like fifty billion times. And actually, maybe the lesson here is: never trust a DiMera. (Even a hot one like EJ.)

9. You can totally have two twins by two different dads.
Sami is my favorite character on Days of Our Lives, hands down. The only one that comes close is Bo Brady, because duh.

But anyway, some of the best Sami storylines have been about her love triangles squares hexagons between her and Lucas and EJ (and Rafe, and Austin, and, and, and). My favorite came when Sami got knocked up and we were like…who’s the daddy(s)?! Because she was having twins! Naturally, it came out that both EJ and Lucas were the fathers.

Sami has the best life ever. I wish I had kids from Lucas and/or EJ and/or both. What a bunch of great looking dads.

10. Be careful who you date! Everyone is related.

Ew. Days of Our Lives is worse than The Bible, or the first chapters of Fellowship of the Ring. 

(Am I going to get in trouble for saying that?)

John and Jennifer image via justjared, Sami wedding image via salemonsalem, Bo and Hope image via fanpop, Christmas with the Hortons image via fanpop, Sami and Lucas image via facebook. family tree image via carolsealock

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