Icing: Relationship Renegade – CHELSEA DALLAS FALATO Gives Us the Breakdown on ‘Beth and Tim Are Breaking Up’
Is there such a thing as an amicable break up? We’d like to (stress on the “like to”) think so, and that’s exactly what Chelsea Dallas Falato is examining in Beth & Tim Are Breaking Up. This brilliant nine-part series really gets in there (We do love that!) and explores the rippling effects of mutual friendships, ex sex and the dreaded Facebook relationship status change. With all these goodies, in addition to horrifying in-laws and territorial losses, we had to ask Chelsea to spill her enlightened guts about everything relationships – therapy session cancelled! So, get ready to explore her thoughts on the right time to get married, getting dumped over AIM (been there) and find out if she’s Team Jen or Angelina – we forgot we were still mad about that!
COMEDY CAKE: What do you think is most important to consider, when attempting an amicable “Clean Break?”
CHELSEA DALLAS FALATO: I think amicable break-ups are hard in a lot of cases, unless the couple is completely on the same page. And even then, as seen through Beth and Tim, as hard as you may try to keep the peace, it doesn’t always end up going so smoothly. I think break-ups tend to bring out the worst in people. It’s an emotional and stressful time which can cause people to act irrationally.
I think the most important thing to consider, if you are trying to keep it amicable, is not to be petty. If you decide to break-up, try not to constantly bring up the past and what went wrong and the little things that annoyed you about the other person. Try to have a little more respect for the person who was a big part of your life. You know what went wrong. It’s why you’re ending things. No need to constantly harp on the past as you both try to move forward.
Also, don’t like, set their house on fire. That’s usually not the way to go. Though I guess there are always exceptions.
CAKE: What/Who was the inspiration for Beth and Tim, the couple?
CDF: There was no specific couple I had in mind when writing Beth & Tim. And it does not come from personal experience. The idea behind Beth & Tim came from wanting to show a different side of a couple in their twenties, who may not fully feel like or be adults yet. We constantly see couples in their late-20s on television and in movies portrayed as moving toward marriage and kids and everlasting love. That no matter what love conquers all. But I think we all know that’s not true.
You’re less likely to see a couple on screen that recognizes their issues, sees that they have different goals, realizes they may not able to fix things and then dealing with a not-so-happy ending no matter how much they love each other. To me, I wanted to write a story that was true to life and relatable. I wanted viewers to be able to see a bit of their own lives and past relationship experience in the series.
And you know, I wanted to make people laugh. Laughter is good. Love the comedy. Best medicine or whatever.
CAKE: What’s the dumbest thing you ever dumped someone, or got dumped, for?
CDF: Many years ago I got dumped for an ex-girlfriend, through AIM mind you, which at the time I thought was pretty dumb. I think for the most part, most guys I’ve been involved with have ended for pretty standard reasons. Sorry that’s not more exciting.
CAKE: We see Beth’s and Tim’s “Couple Friends” Greg and Rachael championing for them to stay together. How often do you think people stay together because of this kind of peer pressure?
CDF: I’d definitely do not think it’s uncommon. I think many people have an innate sense of fear that they will be letting friends and family down by ending a relationship, especially one that is long-term. However, I believe deep down that fear is just an excuse to prolong the inevitable. Break-ups are obviously messy and people will find any reason to put it off. But clearly, how friends and family may feel about it, is no reason to stay.
So listen, don’t worry you guys! Phil and Janine will get over it when you break up. I promise you. Just tell them nicely. Maybe with the help of a beer! Beer makes everything every thing a bit easier.
CAKE: Speaking of Greg and Rachel, they fight more than Beth and Tim. Were you hoping to make a case for going against the grain and ending a relationship, rather than staying in a mediocre union?
CDF: Absolutely. I am 28, going on 29-years-old. I am very much at the age where friends, acquaintances, people I went to high school with, etc. are settling down. I am lucky enough to be surrounded by many strong, loving couples in my life but I also cannot help but notice the flipside. That some people seem to settle for a relationship because they say to themselves “Well, we’ve been together a few years. We’re a certain age. What else are we going to do besides just get married?” And that drives me crazy. You shouldn’t get married or stay in a relationship just because it’s what you think you should do at a specific age and time in your life. I think it’s brave to be able to recognize that a relationship may not necessarily be what you need or want, no matter what expectations may be. I wanted to show that it’s okay to have a not-so-happy ending or be on your own and that it doesn’t mean your world will fall apart.
CAKE: In episode Six, we see Beth and Tim complete the Facebook Status Phase in “their” coffee shop. What was the most coveted “territory” you lost in a break up?
CDF: There are definitely certain places that remind me of gentlemen from my past, but I don’t think I’ve ever really lost territory. The biggest thing I ever lost, was music. Music is such a huge part of my life, and was definitely a shared experience with a few guys I had dated. There are certain albums I cannot listen to because I think of nothing but that person. And I don’t even mean in a bad way. I have little ill will toward most of the guys in my past, but that doesn’t mean I want to put on a record and think about them even for a little while.
CAKE: We also see their waitress (and in Episode 3, their pizza guy) mourn their relationship. What couple’s break up have you mourned like that?
CDF: In terms of mourning relationships of people I don’t truly know, as the waitress doesn’t truly know Beth and Tim, I’d say the closest experience I have had has been with celebrities. There have definitely been celebrity break-ups that have legitimately made me sad. Because we know them guys! US Weekly tell us that celebrities are just like us. So we feel, what they feel. I mean, Amy Poehler and Will Arnett?! Stop it. I was heartbroken. Also, TEAM JEN FOREVER!
CAKE: Of course, “Ex Sex” makes the list. What do you think makes Ex Sex the greatness that it is?
CDF: I think it’s a combination of things. It has a bit of a forbidden aspect to it because you are no longer with this person. The relationship is over. You’re suppose to have moved on. But somehow, you have ended up in bed together again despite your better judgment. Then, there’s obviously a familiarity with the person. You have had sex before. You most likely know what they do and do not like in the boudoir. So you’re combining the idea of doing something you should not do, with the ability to do it up real good. I think that can work out well… at least in the moment. Usually, it’s a big, messy, bad idea in the end.
But you know what, the reason that it’s so great could simply be that since you’re just out of a relationship, you’re probably not getting any elsewhere, so you’re just grateful to be having sex at all.
CAKE: Also, in this episode, their neighbor cheers on their Ex Sex, hoping Beth and Tim stay together. What’s the most embarrassing scenario, in which someone overheard you doing the nasty?
CDF: Oh my. If anyone has ever overheard during… relations… they have not informed me thank goodness. It may have occurred at some point being that NYC apartment walls are thin but I shall keep myself blissfully ignorant for as long as possible. I embarrass a little too easily to think about it.
CAKE: Tim’s sister really has it in for Beth (We’ve been there!). What was the worst in-law/ dating in-law experience from your own life?
CDF: You know what, I haven’t had one. I’ve always had nice interactions with parents and siblings. I know it would be great to have some crazy story here about how the mother of a guy I dated sabotaged our relationship by hiring a man to pretend to be my lover and getting my boyfriend to believe I had been having a dirty affair, but I got nothing for you.
However, I now have a pitch for Shonda Rhimes as that scenario would end with me being accused of killing my mother-in-law, who was a high-powered attorney working for big time health care lobbyists and now I need Olivia Pope to help me prove it wasn’t my fault. It was the hired lover! She refused to pay him! He wanted his money! Dun dun duuuunnnnn!
CAKE: Are you a nice in-law? Explain yourself.
CDF: I am! I have been with my boyfriend for nearly a year, and have been able to spend some time with his lovely parents and younger sister. They’ve made it very easy to be nice to them as they are great people. And they seem to like me so far, so hopefully that keeps going.
CAKE: How important do you think it is for couples to avoid complacency?
CDF: I think complacency to an extent is to be expected. And that isn’t necessarily a bad thing!!! Long-term relationships have their ebbs and flows. There will be constant, unpredictable changes in any relationship, some of which could involve stretches of times when nothing too exciting is happening. I think it’s good to just be able to recognize sometimes as a couple it’s important to try new things together. Shake it up. Keep each other on your toes. This was an issues dealt with in Beth & Tim. Tim just didn’t seem to care enough to try new things as Beth had hoped he would. He wasn’t cognizant that she was unhappy about the stagnant state of their relationship.
If you’re in a relationships, and you are really in it for the long haul, it’s nice to continue to be surprised by your significant other and it’s nice to be able to surprise them too. Don’t try to be the couple you were when you first started dating. You’re never going to be able to get that back. Grow together and continue to become the couple you want to be now and in the future. And don’t be afraid of the quiet comfort that can come from being in a steady relationship.
But honestly, what do I know. If you’re bored, just end it and join Tinder. Whatever makes you happy! (Psst! Waiting for the next best thing on a dating app will not make you happy.)
CAKE: In the Karaoke Episode, Beth and Tim attempt to sing their usual song, Cyndi Lauper’s “Time After Time.” Have you ever had that signature, beloved karaoke song with someone? How did you feel about the song Post Break- Up?
CDF: I have not. I think that could potentially be a bad idea. Because if that relationship ends poorly, you just know, you’re going to end up in a karaoke bar on a Monday night, doing shots and crying while singing both parts of “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” in front of a very confused crowd.
CAKE: Speaking of Post Breakup, will we see a “Post Breakup” Beth &Tim?
CDF: Possibly. I have a story very roughly outlined for a second season. However, I have been focused on a few other projects during the past six months. But yes, there is potential for more Beth & Tim down the road. We’ll see what happens.
CAKE: Where can we see more of you?
You can visit my website www.chelseadallasfalato.com to keep up with my upcoming projects, see past work and get in contact with me.
At the end of the month, I have a second web series being released called Standing Room Only. I co-wrote and costar in with the lovely and hilarious Jackie Rae Aubel.
And of course, if you have not already, be sure to check out Beth & Tim Are Breaking Up.