After seven seasons of laughs, tears, and waffles, it’s time to say goodbye to Parks & Recreation. I will cherish this clever show that introduced me to Galentines Day, Lil’ Sebastian (RIP), Mouse Rat, and Treat Yo Self. Pawnee will always hold a special place in my heart and not just because I’ve lived in Maumee, Ohio and it’s surprisingly similar. These characters have taught me so much about life, love, and the importance of hard work.
Thank you Ron Swanson, for teaching me that it’s okay to let others in. Ron may be a tough guy who enjoys breakfast food and woodworking, but he also isn’t afraid to show his sensitive side. He has nothing but respect for the strong women in his life and even acts as father figure from time to time. He may act stubborn but deep down he wants what is best for the people in his life.
Thank you Jerry Gergich, for teaching me the significance of taking the high road. He may be the butt of every joke but he never holds a grudge over his co-workers. He treats them with respect even when they don’t return the favor. He gives forgiveness easily because he knows that life is short and kindness is more important than revenge. Thank you Jerry, Terry, Larry, Garry, whatever your name is.
Thank you Donna Meagle, for teaching me the importance of self-respect. Donna’s true love may be her Mercedes, but she also knows how crucial it is to love oneself. Sometimes you need to step back and take some time to practice self-love. When life gets overwhelming, don’t forget to Treat Yo Self.
Thank you Chris Traeger, for teaching me the power of positivity. Chris can take any unfortunate situation and put a positive spin on it. His upbeat and energetic personality rubs off on everyone around him. He can LITERALLY find the bright side even in the darkest of times, and thanks to the help of Dr. Richard Nygard he isn’t afraid to admit that sometimes, it is hard to find that positive light. Don’t let that stop you from being optimistic and encouraging others to do the same.
Thank you Andy Dwyer for showing me I don’t have to always be serious. Face it, Andy is a goofball who loves having a good time. He may mess up sometimes but his intentions are always pure. He knows how to have a good time and will go out of his way to make sure his friends are included too. Sure he fell in the pit, and may not always think things through, but he’s spontaneous. Andy has taught me that finding the fun in life is pretty awesome-sauce.
Thank you April Ludgate, for teaching me not to care what others think of me. April doesn’t necessarily fit the mold of they typical twentysomething female. With that being said, she does struggle with the thing we are all secretly struggling with: what to do with our lives. April doesn’t change who she is to make other people like her and she definitely marches to the beat of her own drum. She may hate most people, but she still loves very deeply for her friends both human and furry.
Thank you Tom Haverford, for teaching me to never give up on my dreams. Tom may be the most ridiculous of the parks department crew, but he’s also got the biggest dreams. From Entertainment 7/20, to Rent-A-Swag, to Tom’s Bistro, he doesn’t let failure get in the way of his goals. Even when his business ideas don’t always work out, he doesn’t give up. He is full of ideas and isn’t afraid to sometimes BS his way to the top. Not to mention he has killer swag. I’ll never forget who taught me lingo such as food rakes, zerts, and DJ Roomba.
Thank you Ann Perkins, for showing me the benefits of being a kind and caring person. Ann is always willing to help others and tell the truth even when it hurts. She understands the importance of honesty when it comes to friendship, and that sometimes it takes work to maintain those friendships. She taught me that when it comes to romantic relationships we all deserve someone who respects and treats you right. Ann you beautiful tropical fish, thank you.
Thank you Ben Wyatt, for bringing out my inner nerd. His love for calzones is almost as endearing as his Game of Thrones fan-fiction. He taught me that you shouldn’t change your interests to fit in with other people. He also taught me that it’s possible to rise above after making mistakes. Sure ice town was a disaster, but look at him now! Ben does things by the book and follows the rules, but he also isn’t afraid to take a chance every now and then.
Thank you, Leslie Knope for teaching me the power of passion and hard work. Leslie is someone we can all look up to. She stands up for what she believes in even if she’s standing alone. She respects her enemies and does the right thing for the greater good. She works incredibly hard for what she wants and pushes boundaries when necessary. She taught me that no matter what gender you are, it should not limit your abilities or silence your opinions. Leslie also taught me the importance of friendship. You can spend all your time working, but in the end it’s the people in your life that can give you the most joy. Thank you Leslie, for teaching me what is important in life: waffles, friends, then work.
The parks finale won’t just be the end of a television series, but the end of an era as well. I feel so lucky to have been able to spend time with these characters through the good and bad in the wonderful city of Pawnee. Throw a calzone in the oven and stock up on whipped cream for your waffles, because it’s time to say goodbye to a show that not only made us laugh, but taught us so much about perseverance and dreaming big. Thank you Michael Schur for creating characters that will stay with me forever. Thank you, Parks and Recreation, for LITERALLY everything.