I was watching the latest episode of my current favorite television show, "Friday Night Lights", when one of those pesky details moved in and almost stopped me from enjoying seeing Tim Riggins in football pants. And missing that would be a crime, especially since Tim graduated from Dillon High last season and I didn't expect to ever see him in football pants again
Anyway, Principal Tammy Taylor's secretary was verbally relating a whole string of phone messages to Tammy, working up to the one that really mattered, which I won't go into here because it's the forest, and the tree stopped me from thinking about the forest.
The secretary opened her mouth and fired off this tree: "The PTO meeting has been changed to Friday, the twenty-eighth."
What is wrong with this picture? In case you know nothing about the show, it's about high school football in a small Texas town—hence the title "Friday Night Lights". I have never known a PTO that met during the day—committee meetings certainly, but not the whole PTO. You just can't have a PTO meeting on a Friday night in the fall because that is game night.
But let's just say for the sake of argument, that Dillon High's PTO does meet in the daytime—though I don't know when that would be since the "T" stands for teacher and the teachers are teaching class. Even during the day, there are pep rallies to attend, hair to get done, clothes in team colors to press, and somebody's got to take the team's lunch to the locker room. Usually, those who are willing to do that are also faithful members of the PTO. I know all about this. My godson, Precious Angel, plays football and we don't even live in Texas.
This editorial faux pas did not ruin the episode, but it certainly did distract me.
Keeping up with the details in a story can be scary. I recently fed a bagel with peanut butter to our hero, who is allergic to peanuts. I caught it on the read through before I sent it to Plotter, but I did own up to it.
"I fed Luke peanut butter," I told her.
"We did not plot a medical emergency for Luke," she said, thinking I had, once again run off into the Twilight Zone without consulting her.
"No. I changed it to cream cheese, which hurt me because I don't like cream cheese."
"Luke can like things you don't," she pointed out.
That's true. But Dillon High School cannot have a PTO meeting on a fall Friday.
Can a detail ruin a story for you?