“Diana Lambart,” I say, trying to mimic the A.I. of “The Center” as my sister sits in front of her computer, streaming another episode of Martin Mystery while she eats her lunch. “Clear.”
“Lombard,” she corrects me, frustrated for the third time that day I couldn’t get the name right.
I know I must have seven years ago, back then when we would huddle around our old Windows XP computer to watch Martin Mystery together during our free time or while we had food. I don’t ever remember watching it on TV when it would air new episodes, but she must have, before Nickelodeon decided to drop it eleven years ago.
Most people don’t recognize the show when I tell them the name, or when I show them an image of the characters. They don’t recognize the iconic trio starting with Martin Mystery, the flirtatious prankster with gravity-defying blond hair, usually clad in a fiery red and yellow shirt, and always looking forward to annoy his step sister and fellow member, Diana Lombard, the smart-aleck straight-A’s student, but also the quick thinker and more logical one of the group. Then comes their friend, Java the Caveman, a caveman as you might have guessed, who is around 200,000 years old (but is also a lunch lad and janitor at the school Martin and Diana go to). They are agents of “The Center” who investigate paranormal activity. Definitely the type of show my sister would gush over, while I would over Totally Spies! (Martin Mystery was never really my type.) Not many people remember Totally Spies! either, but that isn’t the point.
The point is that it was seven years ago when we would watch Martin Mystery together and a bunch of other obscure shows no one ever remembers. Six/seven years ago when I could go to my siblings, tell them a corny joke referencing the shows and books we enjoyed together, and laugh about it. Five/six/seven years ago when I would try to say the jokes to my friends, but they would never understand them. My friends still don’t understand my jokes. But my siblings don’t either. Not anymore.
I’ve branched off. I found something new, I guess. While my sister continues to watch Martin Mystery as she eats, I’ll be listening to music (sometimes watching AMVs because I am such a huge nerd), trying out a new anime or a cartoon, or watching some hockey or VLD.
But she disapproves of me listening to music while I eat. She doesn’t like anime. And she hates watching hockey during dinnertime.
I guess it’s fine. I’m doing what I want to do, and she is too. But sometimes I wish I could shut down my laptop or hand over the TV remote to my mother so then I could lean in over my sister’s shoulder to catch a glimpse of the show that would bring us together every single mealtime seven years ago.
And maybe then I’ll finally get Diana’s name right.