“ARE YOU OKAY?”
A kind and thoughtful phrase, you might say. Well, yes, that’s true. BUT….. If you watch any TV shows or go out to see movies, whether they’re dramas, romances, comedies, action, horror, science fiction or whatever, you already know all about “Are You Okay?” – but you might not know that you know.
I am convinced that there is a “Script Writing School”. And in this School, there is a considerable time slot set aside to teach aspiring script writers that “Are You Okay?” is absolutely necessary for inclusion to any script they write. Any. They probably spend weeks teaching this – maybe months. In fact, they probably have refresher courses from time to time to remind writers of it’s importance, or to put new twists on it.
I am so attuned to “ARE YOU OKAY?” that every time I hear it now, I snicker. That’s a bad thing: that’s wrong, of course. I should do what the script wants me to do – feel deep concern that the person IS okay, and relief when I hear the given response “I’M FINE.” After all, I’ve been on the edge of my seat throughout the action and the drama, and I, too, want to know if he/she/it/they are okay, right?
I told my daughter about “Are You Okay”, and she began listening for it too. Now she’s mad at me because she can’t stop listening for it. You will probably get angry with me too, because if you’ve read this far, those words are now imprinted on your brain. The idea that they are in almost every script will even make you listen for them all the more – everywhere, even in National Geographic specials. And the weird thing is, you’ll quite often find them where you least expect them to be. It’s insidious how those words have been inserted into every facet of our watching/listening lives. Even in the world of televised sports – hockey, basketball, football, soccer, volleyball, badminton, maybe even golf and ping pong. And for all of you who’ve sworn off watching the television set and/or visiting your local movie theatre, I’m sorry, but even radio broadcasts are not immune to the “Are You Okays?”.
Recently, I heard “Are You Okay?” in Falling Skies, Under the Dome, Longmire, The Killing, Hell On Wheels, to name a few….. and since I am a movie nut who saves them on my magic gizmo to watch later, in the five or six movies I saw – guess what — each and every one wanted to know “Are You Okay?” – sometimes more than once. In one movie, first the hero asked the heroine “Are You Okay?” and when she said she was okay, then she asked the hero “Are You Okay?” A double-whammy.
Sometimes you’ll find the script writers get carried away – they just can’t seem to help themselves. In a recent scene I watched the heroine asked the hero “Are you okay?” When he replied “Yes, I’m okay.” she persisted, saying “But are you really okay?”
A seasoned listener will find subtle variations on this phrase, of course, and I think they are all fair game to be counted. I’m pretty sure the “Script Writing School” has been teaching sneaky ways of using different words to trick you, like:
“Is he okay?” – (she/it/they)
“Do you think you’re okay?” – (he’s/she’s/it’s/they’re)
“Do you think you’ll be okay? -(he’ll/she’ll/it’ll/they’ll)
“Do you think you’re going to be okay?” – (he’s/she’s/it’s/they’re)
“Are you okay now?” – (he/she/it/they)
I also count statements like “I’m okay” or “I think I will be okay” or “I’m alright” as belonging to this group taught in the “Script Writing School” as well. It’s also counted if they drop the “Are” and just say “You okay?” – or even, “It’s okay?”
Oh, and yes, don’t let them fool you with any of these alternatives and slight modifications on the theme, such as:
“Are you all right?” (Is he/she/it/they)
“Are you going to be all right?” (is he/she/it/they)
“Everything okay?” or “Everything alright?” (covers anyone and everyone)
“How are you?” (is he/she/it) (are they)
“Are you hurt?” (is he/she/it) (are they)
Or “Can you walk?”- “Can you move?” – “Can you stand?” I’m sure the “Script Writing School” is creating even more, as we speak….
I’ll pass on a very valuable pointer to you that might save your sanity.
If you become addicted to listening for “Are You Okay?” and all the possible variations of it, try not to let it take over your real life. Keep it where it belongs – in the fantasy world. For instance, do not, under any circumstance snicker or smirk when someone in real life takes a tumble, and you hear the words “Are you okay?” It might be someone who doesn’t take kindly to the fact that you laughed when they fell, and you might regret your mirth. Or, what if you are the one who has tumbled? We all need to hear those words, and they do need to be said from time to time.
But — if you have a bit of a mean streak in you, (I seem to have developed one) you might want to pass this “Are You Okay?” message on to others you know, just to get revenge from the fact that you became addicted to it. That’s what I’m doing – at every opportunity. I want revenge.
Oh, by the way — I’ve found a few other commonly recurring phrases, but I won’t go into them with you now – it could really cause insanity. You might even stop watching movies and television, and the Script Writing School would go out of business…..
(hint…. “we need to talk“…. “hang in there“….. “you lied to me“….. etc.)
Out of curiosity, I checked YouTube to see if there were any “Are You Okay?” tunes out there, and here are just a few of the many I found:
Here’s Nashville’s Coin performing “It’s Okay” (audio only) – posted by IndieCurrent
Some 1990 nostalgia from Detroit’s Was (Not Was) – “Are You OK?” – posted by Hatter1950
Here’s a Michael Jackson hit from the 1980’s – “Annie Are You Ok?” – posted by DrMuriloGu
Not music, but certainly in the same theme….
Did you know there’s an Annual Day In Australia called “RUOK?” – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GmFtQxWPyy8&feature=youtu.be (and, if you’d like to know more about it, visit here https://www.ruokday.com)
Here’s a crazy scene from “Billy Madison” where Adam Sandler asks the wrong person – “Are You Okay?” – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HLO4C3_iERw
Finally, for all you old school action video gamers out there, here’s Terry from “Garou: Mark of the Wolves”, where the inevitable question is asked (you guessed it) ” Are You Okay?” – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xLxrjitrkIs&feature=youtu.be
Quotes: (Just a few……. )
“everything turns out okay…..”
“Ask yourself the big question: Is that okay?” (John Rohn)
“It’s okay to talk to yourself just don’t interrupt.”
“I am me, and I am Okay.”
“‘It’s okay‘ is a cosmic truth.”
“Never say ‘Are You Allright?’ to someone suffering from a breakup… it doesn’t help.”
“You think everything’s ok, and it is…. ’til it’s not.”
A shorter blog than usual… but another one is coming…..
Signing off… ej.