8 Simple Rules

8 Simple Rules
a kate west reflection

Dear John,

I'm sorry I missed you in the first couple of seasons of "8 Simple Rules". I only caught part of the third and last season so I really didn't get to see you spar with your annoying t.v. neighbors, love your t.v. wife or lecture your t.v. children. I tuned in on reruns when they were all lamenting your passing. I'm so sorry. But you've really got to hand it to the writers - they did a fine and sensitive job incorporating those inner and outer worlds (with the exception of the what-were-they-thinking "Freaky Friday" episode - ick). That's what grabbed my attention in the first place. I was intrigued by the genuine emotion from the actors. It really helped audiences deal.

Kaley Cuoco and Amy Davidson are evenly matched sparring night-and-day sisters as the blonde peppy Bridget and the red-headed passionate Kerry and Martin Spanjers is adorable as your son Rory. Oh and I'm a big fan of Katey Sagal - she was so great as your grieving widow Cate. Did you get to work with James Garner as your father-in-law? Classic. Or David Spade as your cousin-in-law C.J.? Love the sarcastic one-liners.

I never read W. Bruce Cameron's original book "8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter" but I love the idea. I'll have to order a copy from Amazon now. And I'll have to Netflix your earlier episodes. It really is a charming show and I know everyone still misses you terribly. I watch when I can.

The 8 Simple Rules:
Rule One: If you pull into my driveway and honk you'd better be delivering a package, because you're sure as heck not picking anything up.

Rule Two:: You do not touch my daughter in front of me. You may glance at her, so long as you do not peer at anything below her neck. If you cannot keep your eyes or hands off of my daughter's body, I will remove them.

Rule Three: I am aware that it is considered fashionable for boys of your age to wear their trousers so loosely that they appear to be falling off their hips. Please don't take this as an insult, but you and all of your friends are complete idiots. Still, I want to be fair and open minded about this issue, so I propose this compromise: You may come to the door with your underwear showing and your pants ten sizes too big, and I will not object. However, In order to assure that your clothes do not, in fact, come off during the course of your date with my daughter, I will take my electric staple gun and fasten your trousers securely in place around your waist.

Rule Four: I'm sure you've been told that in today's world, sex without utilizing a "barrier method" of some kind can kill you. Let me elaborate: when it comes to sex, I am the barrier, and I WILL kill you.

Rule Five: In order for us to get to know each other, we should talk about sports, politics, and other issues of the day. Please do not do this. The only information I require from you is an indication of when you expect to have my daughter safely back at my house, and the only word I need from you on this subject is "early."

Rule Six: I have no doubt you are a popular fellow, with many opportunities to date other girls. This is fine with me as long as it is okay with my daughter. Otherwise, once you have gone out with my little girl, you will continue to date no one but her until she is finished with you. If you make her cry, I will make YOU cry.

Rule Seven: As you stand in my front hallway, waiting for my daughter to appear, and more than an hour goes by, do not sigh and fidget. If you want to be on time for the movie, you should not be dating. My daughter is putting on her makeup, a process which can take longer than painting the Golden Gate Bridge. Instead of just standing there, why don't you do something useful, like changing the oil in my car?

Rule Eight: The following places are not appropriate for a date with my daughter: Places where there are beds, sofas, or anything softer than a wooden stool. Places lacking parents, policemen, or nuns. Places where there is darkness. Places where there is dancing, holding hands, or happiness. Places where the ambient temperature is warm enough to induce my daughter to wear shorts, tank tops, midriff T-shirts, or anything other than overalls, a sweater, and a goose down parka zipped up to her chin. Movies with a strong romantic or sexual theme are to be avoided; movies which feature chainsaws are okay. Hockey games are okay.

Goodnight John. Rest well.



John Ritter: Paul Hennessy (d. September 11, 2003)
Katey Sagal: Cate Hennessy
James Garner: Grandpa Jim
Kaley Cuoco: Bridget Hennessy
Amy Davidson: Kerry Hennessy
Martin Spanjers: Rory Hennessy
David Spade: C.J.

Production Credits:
W. Bruce Cameron (Book Author)
Lori Openden (Casting)
Tony Askins (Cinematographer)
Dan Foliart (Composer (Music Score))
Gil Junger (Director)
Joe Bergen (Editor)
Michael Bostick (Executive Producer)
Flody Suarez (Executive Producer)
Tom Shadyac (Executive Producer)
Tracy Gamble (Executive Producer)
Franco E. Bario (Producer)
Jay Pelissier (Production Designer)
Tracy Gamble (Screenwriter)

The Book:
8 Simple Rules For Dating My Teenage Daughter

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