Why are we fascinated with suffering? Obviously we try to avoid all forms of suffering, yet we can’t leave it be. Take the “coming of age” story: growing up is the single most definite, painful, and – dare I say – excruciating ten years of our lives (for some it never ends). The sucky thing is that adolescence gets piled right on top of whatever other crap life had in store: poverty, hunger, hateful family, bad luck, bad health, bad breaks, or just plain being born under the wrong sign. Just when life seems like its going to start to get interesting, it turns to bollocks. Right when the idea of independence ruminates, when self-awareness buds, the sh*t-storm gathers in the sky and rains down, long and hard. So then why were “The Wonder Years” and “Malcolm in the Middle” so huge? Because we love the pain. We glory in escaping from our own pathetic lives into someone else’s more pathetic life. Masochists! Bring on the crap, because we’re all in it. We are it. It’s therapudic, because together we’re all beautifully pathetic and unfortunate losers.