Sandra Tsing Loh becomes glued to the AMC series "Breaking Bad."
It's 8:30 a.m. on a blindingly bright Wednesday morning. I am stumbling home through an unfamiliar part of town - a strip of auto repair shops, paint suppliers and junk stores. My head throbs. My eyes water. I've had almost no sleep. It is because I have become an addict. An addict of "Breaking Bad."
I'm actually having my Volvo wagon serviced this morning, so I thought I'd walk to Starbucks for breakfast. But I have spent so many evening hours glued to Breaking Bad that everything around me looks like Albuquerque, the show's blasted, meth lab-rich desert setting. And I feel, in some way, that I am becoming a kind of Breaking Bad character myself. With cunningly slitted eyes, I poured Vanilla-flavored creamer into my coffee as carefully as though it were - I want to say - "methylene."
That coffee jolt was needed because I had woken up with what felt like flecks of fine crusty crystals on my face. I put my finger up to them. Yellow. Salty. Chip crumbs. Oh God no! With a start, it all came flooding back. Last night, around 11 p.m., that quiet time of night, I made a quick, brutal decision to cross that great divide-to bridge the abyss--to part that dark curtain that no working parent of school-aged children should cross. . .
Which is to say instead of stopping at the climax of Breaking Bad's Season One, I started in on Season Two. I was just too curious about what was going to happen next with Tuco, the crazy drug lord, who dragged our two main characters at gunpoint to a shack in a desert.
Bizarrely, Tuco slung his uzi on the wall and started making fajitas to bolster everyone -including his mute, wild-eyed, wheelchair-bound father - for the long drive into Mexico.
It was then, hearing that sizzling sound, feeling suddenly peckish, that I did it, the unthinkable.
With the steely resolve of a felon, I paused Netflix, padded on silent jaguar feet to the kitchen, got that half-finished satchel of Trader Joe's salt and pepper kettle-style chips that I knew was there nestled discreetly behind the toaster - oh yes, I KNEW my children's Labor Day picnic remains were there. In truth, they were all I had been thinking about.
Anyway, I got that bad boy-that, that EIGHTBALL of kettle chips and devoured it in bed one delectable fat and carbohydrate-laden bomb at a time while watching my fourth hour of Breaking Bad.
And that's how I woke up with chip imprints on my face. Oh oh oh oh... I had been a very very naughty high school chemistry teacher.
Next week: High season two.