Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Gimme Shelter (Island)

On last night's episode of How I Met Your Mother, Ted and Stella proceed to the altar in her dream wedding locale, Shelter Island.

It wasn't the first time the island, "sheltered" in between the north and south forks of New York state's Long Island, was used as a sitcom setting. Back in 2002, the gang from Will & Grace invaded the normally peaceful place, when Will rescued Karen from certain humiliation at the hands of Beverly Leslie by providing her with a partner for their country club's annual "spotlight dance" at Valentine's Day. Then, three seasons later, they returned and integrated the place with homos, as Will danced with Jack, and two closeted lesbians played by Chita Rivera and Michele Lee dared to tango.

But if you've ever been to the actual Shelter Island, you know that both shows took some liberties and/or got some things a little bit wrong. The place has very few commercial establishments, save for a few restaurants and a supermarket in a strip at its center, and I think one small restaurant/hotel in the ritzy Heights section. So it's not too likely that there would be a hippie/vegan lodge of the sort seen on HIMYM last night, with its hellish prohibitions on meat and ale. Moreover, Ted and the other characters kept saying they were going "up" to Shelter Island, which would imply north -- but the Island is several hours due east of Manhattan. When we New Yorkers venture to Long Island, we say we're going "out" to the Hamptons, Shelter Island or Montauk, not "up."

And I think poor Robin would be a little more pissed than she seemed to be at having traveled all that way, only to be uninvited upon her arrival. Yes, she was relieved not to have to watch her ex get married. But not only did she spend 24 hours, as she said, on a flight from Japan, but then, being that she probably flew into JFK, she then also spent several hours in a car to either Greenport (on the North Fork) or North Haven (on the South Fork.) From there, she had to wait for the passenger/car ferry service (the show got this part right), which would dump her at the base of Shelter Island Heights. Then, it's a hard-to-find taxi to wherever that hippie-dippie hotel was. And then, Ted uninvites her? I was pissed for her!

Poor Ted. He never should have shlepped a funny guy like Jason Jones out to see Stella. And poor Robin. As she watched Stella and Tony hug it out, that must have been one long ferry ride home.

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