My Love For Gus & Harley

I say up above, “See what life is like,” but I haven’t truly shared “my life” of loving GusH. In this entry I would like to share with you my journey with Gus and Harley. Starting at the beginning…

My mom has raised me on the ABC soap operas. She has watched All My Children for years, and she left the TV on for the other shows. So it was only natural that I start to enjoy those shows. I think I’ve been watching all three off and on since 1996. I have early memories of AMC characters from ’96 and ’97 and some early memories of OLTL. I began watching AMC and OLTL in the spring of 1997. From there I was hooked the rest of my life. I got into GH full time in the summer of 1999. Some stories will lead me away from them, and others lead me back to it. But for better or worse I’ll always have an interest in them.

Guiding Light came into the picture because of my grandmom (Dad’s mom). She grew up with the CBS shows, and she remembers listening to GL on the radio. I’ve spent many days and nights at my grandparents’ house, where I’ve been exposed to all four CBS shows. I guess GL stood out more than the others. A couple years later I did get into ATWT; I’ve watched that off and on. Young and the Restless and Bold and the Beautiful are okay; I know who’s who. But I have memories of GL…

I liked Beth, and I remember her being on the run with little Lizzie, hiding from her abusive boyfriend. I always knew Reva was the big diva star of the show. I remember the second time she returned from the dead and her clone story, which I liked. But Harley stood out a lot; I like her from the very beginning. She was cool; I liked her tough-looking face and strong voice. She seemed very independent; she could take on anyone who messed with her. And that’s very true; don’t mess with her. She’s a feisty little thing. And she’s special to me; I’ve always loved her. Always.

I guess those memories are from ’98? ’99? Maybe some Harley stuff is from 2000. I’m not sure, but I didn’t start watching on my own until early 2001 - still on and off because of it being on at the same time as GH. So, I saw what I could, I guess. Don’t ask me everything I saw/remember because from 2001 onward I’ve seen A LOT! Now the focus will be on Harley and Gus…

I loved Phillip and Harley! They were so cute, sweet, and romantic. And I got into the show at the end of their romantic relationship. How terrible! Keep in mind that was before I knew how bad the Spauldings are. So I thought Phillip and Harley was a supercouple; they seemed like a forever kind of couple. But that wasn’t the case. I didn’t see their break-up/divorce, so I didn’t cry or anything. I just thought they’d reunite somewhere down the road. That wasn’t the case either. I remember reading in the Late Breaking News section of Soap Opera Digest that GL was bringing on a new love interest for Harley – Gus Aitoro. I was not happy at all. So I didn’t want Harley with some new guy or any guy other than Phillip. I didn’t like Gus for a couple of months; he made that easy by being an arrogant revenge junkie.

So I just stuck by Harley. Luckily her relationship with her new love interest was slowed because of her real-life pregnancy, which was written onto the show. I kinda liked her with Rick; they were sweet. And I’ll never forget the Bauer BBQ when Phillip finally found out she was having a child with his best friend. Major moment! When the real-life maternity leave came about, I didn’t watch the show again until she returned. That’s when only Harley was important, but since then, I’ve gained more favorites. And even though I didn’t want Harley with Gus, I did enjoy their bickering. It was hilarious! But I didn’t see any romantic chemistry; I was totally blind.

I kinda remember Harley giving birth to Jude in a jail cell; Gus delivered him. It was something. And I remember Harley and Rick naming him… Gus helped by asking for Harley’s favorite song – “Hey Jude” by The Beatles. That was nice. Around that time (later months of 2001) I realized that Harley and Phillip were finished. The show wasn’t going back to them. And little by little I think I saw the chemistry between Gus and Harley. I don’t remember if I saw their first kiss, but I think I saw their second kiss – in a bedroom at the Bauer’s and Rick caught them. That’s when Harley ended things with Rick, and I think I was happy about that. There was only a friendship between them, no romantic or sexual chemistry. But I saw the booming hot chemistry between Gus and Harley. The end of 2001 must be when I began liking them, but I still wasn’t seeing the show every day.

2002 was a big year for them. GL went reasonably slow with them, which was good because it took a while for me to see love between them. I thought their chemistry was just sexual. I didn’t get to see every romantic moment, but I liked what I saw. I saw them at the Bauer cabin playing in the snow, and Gus gave her a meaningful flower. I saw some steamy kissing outside of Company and at the church gym. I remember their first official date with the exploding lasagna. I saw their whole wacky trip to Pennsylvania. They were stranded, almost made love, and spent the night in jail. I loved every second of it! I remember being so angry at missing their “first time”; a couple on GH was steaming things up too. I couldn’t see both, unfortunately. I remember them living together and then not living together. I don’t think I saw when they first said ‘I love you’, but I still didn’t believe love existed anyway. And I remember numerous other stories and times from the year. Hard to list everything else.

I still just liked them in 2003, and I followed them the best I could. I think I watched more GL than GH that year. GusH’s stories were pretty big. I enjoyed their mission to find Gus’s real parents even though there was a lack of love/romance between them. I saw everything when Harley was shot. I remember a commercial for them being involved in a domestic problem, and it was something I couldn’t miss. I was worried for my Harley, and everything at the hospital was intense. But luckily, she chose her family and woke up. What I didn’t see (which sucks) is the Insatiable Wallbanger love scene. If you’re a GusHer, you know exactly what that is. The best moment is when they got engaged; it was at home and unexpected. I cried, and I think from that day on I tried watching GL when I could.

2003 was also when GL began airing at 10 am in the New York areas. I’m in PA, so that applied to me. When that happened, I started watching GL every day. It could have occurred in June or July. July is when I finally found a site just for GusH; I had searched a couple times before then. It was the only GusH site, and it still is (pretty much). The site is actually a discussion board; the link is found above under Sweet Deals. Today it’s the official fan site of GusH and their portrayers (Ricky Paull Goldin and Beth Ehlers). I found my home when I found that board, and I made friends. It’s a great place for GusHers. I think through that board I finally saw how much love Gus and Harley have for each other because there were all kinds of pictures and video clips to see.

2003 was when I began LOVING GusH with all my heart! They were and are the BEST couple of GL and daytime. I’ve fallen for them, and through the rest of 2003 and onward I’ve embraced their past and gotten to know them so well. I’ve seen those episodes/scenes that I missed from ’02 and ’01. I’ve seen how deep their love is, and I’ve seen how they’ve saved each other. I’ve gotten to know their portrayers; I’ve seen how talented they are. I’ve gotten attached to them, and I cry and laugh with them all the time.

2004 was the most heartbreaking year; their non-wedding left me so depressed. I was numb and cold like Harley. It was terrible. But the Thanksgiving dance and the Christmas kiss gave hope back to the fans because GusH is one of those that will always stay connected. Gus and Harley will always end up back together if they are somehow apart.

I believe there are two years that are GusH’s best. 2002 is one because that contained most of their firsts as a couple; it’s when they their romantic relationship really started. And there were plenty of wonderful, sexy scenes. 2005 is the second year because their love was just so strong throughout everything they endured. Harley’s trial was the best storyline ever because they had GusH build back their relationship. They didn’t get back together right away; it was kinda a push and stay thing. Harley would push Gus away one moment and in the next they were together in a hot lip-lock. I’m glad that GL went slow with the trial and GusH reuniting. Also, I noticed how intense and on their eye contact is; they really do not need words to express how they feel. And throughout the entire storyline the actors shined so brightly like never before; I saw just how truly talented they are; they deserved Emmys for that story. 2005 also showcased GusH on the run. It didn’t last too long, but I loved it! There was fun, danger, and true love combined to create quite an adventure. And that’s when GusH finally for certain got back together. They made love for the first time in months, and it was special and well worth the wait. The time it happened was appropriate. AND 2005 is when they were finally married! It was the BEST wedding EVER!

2006 was a rollercoaster year, but I hung in there with them. I always will. And now Guiding Light is celebrating 70 years in broadcasting; it’s amazing that such a wonderful couple is a part of that show and those 70 years. I’m proud to be a GusHer.

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