11/23/94“Hold on to the thread
the currents will shift
Glide me towards you
know something’s left
And we’re all allowed to dream
of the next time we touch” – Pearl Jam
NIN COUNTDOWN: 14 DAYS
“I won’t decorate my love” – Liz Phair
I got an FS from the PJ network and felt unworthy. Thanksgiving’s tomorrow. On the U2 clips video there is the sweetest story. Phil Joanou met this woman backstage and after talking to her for just an hour he proposed! They flew to Vegas soon after and were married with an Elvis impersonator present. I think that’s about the most romantic thing I ever heard, KNOWING after just an hour.
(oh my god, I just reread the first quote and almost shivered. It’s very creepy, subconsciously appropriate)
First let’s get the deciphering of my silly acronyms out of the way. FS= Friendship Sheet (like Friendship Book, but all on a single page instead of a booklet.) and PJ= Pearl Jam. It was my needlessly vague way of saying I got a peek into to world of rabid Pearl Jam fans and realized it wasn’t where I wanted to be, considering I was busy being a rabid U2 and Nine Inch Nails Fan. ‘Nuff said.
Now it’s time for romance! Oh me, oh my. The fact that I would consider getting married to someone after knowing them for an hour as the pinnacle of romance should indicate just how dangerously clueless I was when it came to matters of the heart. Forget such pesky matters as taking time to get to know somebody and gauging compatibility before deciding to build a life together. Why bother with such practicalities when you can just become instantly smitten and elope to Vegas?
Years after hearing this story, I came across a movie on cable called Entropy. It was written and directed by Phil Joanou, and was heavily autobiographical. Stephen Dorff stars as a young filmmaker whose life goes topsy-turvy as he tries to negotiate the pressures of being an up-and-coming director with his questionable relationship behavior (namely, marrying a woman during a drunken haze less than 24 hours after meeting her). When I was a teenage romantic, it didn’t dawn on me that perhaps Joanou was not entirely sober when this insta-wedding happened, or that the ensuing marriage didn’t endure. Seeing the film dramatization of his life years later made me reassess this whole story, and in the process, my own tilted outlook on love.
As for the almost-shivering, who knows. It probably had to do with the crush I had on my penpal, who lived several hours away. I also don’t see how it was creepy or subconsciously appropriate, since I often chose quotes for the journal that reflected my mood. It was about as “creepy, subconsciously appropriate” as things were “ironic” in the Alanis Morissette song. Perhaps the better word in both cases would be “unfortunate.”
As for my romantic views, they’ve evolved but still retain an optimistic glow. I still believe in love at first sight, but understand more time and thought should go into making a deeper commitment. I know it can take months if not years to get to really know somebody, and even then there’s usually still more to discover. I believe all the starry-eyed magic behind the first fireworks of love needs a lot of work to be maintained; love doesn’t just take care of itself.
But despite my pragmatic education of the guts and gore of love, at my core I’m still a romantic.
And I still want to elope to Vegas someday and get married by an Elvis impersonator.
Thursday, March 24, 1994
I keep going through nice healthy periods when I don’t like Elliot Meyerowitz then something happens to make me start again. This last time I was walking to math and passed by a room he was waiting outside. After repeatedly telling myself not to look at him I did and saw he was staring at me. I just looking into his eyes and that was it.
Today in health (the one class I have with him) I sat a seat away from him until he moved his chair so he could see better (we were watching a movie) or sit next to Cindy J (You know all the guys you consider the cutest in your grade? Well she’s the one who goes out with them). While he was repositioning his chair he brushed by my leg and apologized. Pretending to be deeply involved in a crossword puzzle I mumbled “that’s okay.”
Now he was directly (almost) in front of him and the lights were out so I could only see his outline from the glow of the t.v. A couple of times during the movie (at least 3 or 4) he turned his head in my direction like he was looking at me out of the corner of his eye or maybe he was looking at Cindy. Probably the latter.
After the movie our health teacher took out this fetus preserved in formaldehyde and had a few people at a time come up to her desk to see it. When I went up I made sure I wasn’t standing next to him but then the people between us left. You had to lean over to see it so we both did and he was very close to me. I actually held my breath. I quickly sat down after that. I saw him a lot during the rest of the day. I’m actually beginning to think that I…it’s not possible. How can I if I don’t even know him and can’t even talk to him. No. I do not love Elliot Meyerowitz.
I can’t wait until I leave with my mom Monday. This cruise will definitely clear my head.
“I send a heart to all my dearies
When your heart is oh so dreary DREAM.” — Smashing Pumpkins, “Mayonnaise”
Oh, the teen angst of it all! Being around a boy you liked could sometimes feel like navigating a mine field. So much uncertainty and insecurity and the tiniest gesture or interaction took on an inflated magnitude. It was like being a character in a 90’s version of an Edith Wharton novel, except I felt like I was the only one who took notice of all the nuances, the only one who gave them any meaning. At the time, I would have traded in all those cruises with my mother to have a real connection with Elliot, one that didn’t take place in the wistful corners of my melodramatic brain. Now I can look back on it more logically, I can reason that I hardly knew a thing about this boy and never talked to him, so my crush was mostly based on his looks, and therefore I can’t blame him if he in turn developed a crush on one of the cutest girls in our grade.
I guess crushes by nature are based on superficial traits and a tenuous foothold on reality, at least the ones I’ve specialized in for a good part of my life.
I didn’t stand a chance with Elliot. But at least we’ll always have the fetus in formaldehyde.
Wednesday, August 7th, 1992
Boston was really cool. The hotel was the best. The baseball game was totally dull but we (Tabitha, Anita, Didi and I) stayed up almost all night seriously talking and acting a bit wild. We found out more about each other and had a blast. Oh, yeah. After the baseball game, at about 11:00pm we went bowling! That was weird but kinda fun.
[By "a bit wild" I mean we jumped on the beds and ate lots of junk food. There was also a bit running around the motel hallways and a late night pillow fight. And lots and lots of giggling. I know, such crazy party girls we were. Amazing we didn't end up in rehab, right?
Seriously, though, that night was like something out of a Sleepover Friends book. While nowhere near as popular or beloved as The Babysitters Club or Sweet Valley High/Twins series, I briefly read these books in the late 80's. They centered around a varied group of female friends who have weekly (...wait for it...) sleepovers. The only thing I remember about these books is that one of the characters' favorite colors were black, white, and red (to the point where her entire room and outfits were bedecked in the three pigments) and that there were pages and pages of descriptions of the various junk foods consumed. Somehow a plethora of plots unfolded around these slumber parties, whose location alternated between the girls' houses. However, I can honestly say I doubt any of the books revolved around late-night spirited hijinks in a Boston hotel. Us Brooklyn girls know how to live it up.]
The next day we went to a museum and shopping at a place similar to (but much bigger than) South Street seaport.
[That trip to Boston was one of the highlights of my year. And while I ended up living there years later, it was a while before I realized the shopping center we visited was Quincy Market. To date, it was the only time I've been there, which is so much the better, because I'm sure nothing could have topped the small joy I had shopping for t-shirts, candy, and kiwi-flavored lip balm.]
I don’t know how I feel about Ricky Klein at the present time. I mean, if you would have asked me this morning how I felt about him I would have said that I love him.
[Insert *cringe* here.]
Maybe I did love Ricky.
[I really didn't.]
Or maybe I just enjoyed the thought of loving him.
[Could be. I was subjected to a sundry of sappy movies and books at a tender and impressionable age.]
I do know that at one time I had very deep feelings for him.
[Lust + Infatuation = A 14-year-old's "Very Deep Feelings"]
After all I don’t write poems about just anybody!
[Fast forward ten years and we'll all have a good laugh about that one.]
To be honest I was all ready to include a note in the envelope with his tip that uncovered my feelings. I would have given him the poem too.
A moment ago I felt guilty and fickle for feeling this way but now that I think about it I am glad that I began to get over him before I got hurt or embarrassed. I did not tell anybody who I liked (although I think Didi pretty much figured it out) and now I don’t know if I will. I think another reason I began having strong emotions for him is because we were both born on the same day so it was like destiny or something. I guess it wasn’t.
If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, I was surely straitjacket-bound at that point. Luckily I came to my senses and just gave Ricky the cash. Thank goodness I had clarity and good sense in that moment when I didn’t on numerous similar occasions.
Don’t worry, though, there will be many more lapses in judgment when it comes to boys and many more notes/poems/stories and all around questionable behavior. Guess being sensible this time around was like destiny. Or something.
Thursday, Jan. 3, 1991
God, I have to straighten out my emotions. I have no idea how I feel or how I’m supposed to feel. I just feel weird and kind of breathless. I can’t explain it.
[I can: I'm a friggin' drama queen!]
I’m a guyaholic. I’m addicted to guys.
[Where's my support group, dammit?]
When I went back to school on Wednesday, Danny was absent because he was in Club Med and won’t be back in school until Monday. We have Friday off so I only would have to manage two days without him.
[Two. Whole. Days. Without a boy who barely paid attention to me. However could I survive such a painful absence?]
As it turns out, those two days were not too hard to bear. Actually, I think that I kinda-sorta fell for another guy. The crazy part is that the guy is Justin. I don’t know what happened, but after vacation he just seemed like a changed person. His hair looks great since he had it cut.
[Let's not forget the power of a good haircut. It could turn a guy from being nondescript to being full-on crush material. Let's be honest, Justin was not a "changed person" after his vacation, he probably just had a tan to go with his new haircut. But I appreciate my attempt to make these new feelings less shallow than they actually were, which was very.]
And how could I have not noticed those georgeous (god I’m a bad speller.) hazel (yes they change colors!) eyes before!?!
[More importantly, how did I get accepted to a school for the so-called gifted and talented when I still couldn't spell a word I used to describe EVERY cute boy with decent hair? How could I have not noticed a, you know, dictionary?!]
He acts a lot nicer to me also.
[Yeah, right. More likely his hair acted a lot nicer to me, by looking so darn good.]
Am I falling for Justin?*
Did two days (could two days) make me forget Danny?
Well, I haven’t forgotten him, I just need to see him again to make sure I like him.
[I told me so!]
Why doesn’t anything happen when I think of Danny?
[Like what, spontaneous human combustion?]
Why do I get a funny feeling in my stomach when I think of Justin?
Am I that fickle?
Could 2 lousy days make me forget one guy and fall for another?
[Yes and no.]
I’m not sure. Am I just using Justin as a substitute for Danny in his absence?
[No, I'm using them both as a substitute for my boredom and frustration toward a school that's a struggle for me academically and socially.]
If I were to give me advice I would tell me to wait until Monday and see how I feel then. And to enjoy the attention I’m getting. I think I’ll take that advice.
If I were to give my thirteen year old self advice, I would tell me to take up some hobbies to take my mind off boys, and just grit my teeth and bear the next couple of years.
* As I type this, “Is this Love” by Squeeze is playing. Ooh, synchronicity!
Yesterday was Valentine’s Day and guess what happened? Mitchell gave me a bracelet! It’s so beautiful! I’m wearing it now. It has a thin gold chain with a heart on it studded with diamonds. I absolutely love it.
I remember being in class that day, and wondering whether Mitch would acknowledge it in any way. I don’t know elementary school dating conventions in this day and age, but 20 years ago, going on two dates in the sixth grade practically meant you were going steady. At least, that’s what it meant to my possibly-deluded 12-year-old self. Even so, I didn’t want to get my hopes up that Mitch would do anything romantic, because he seemed generally shy of showing any public displays of affection (considering that 99% of the time we spent together was in public, I should have seen this as a potential problem).
The school day finished uneventfully, and I resigned myself to the fact that my Valentine’s Day would be nothing special.
I was on my way home, just passing the school yard, when someone came running up behind me.
He probably said something like “I got this for you” when he gave me the bracelet. I probably thanked him.
I held it tightly in my hand until I came home and then put it on. The heart shifted around my skinny wrist when I wore it, so I frequently adjusted the chain until I could see the “diamonds” glimmer in the light. Sometimes I put the bracelet around the neck of the puppy Mitch had given me, so that it looked like the stuffed animal had a fancy collar. But mostly I wore the hell out of it, pleased to have received jewelry on Valentine’s Day, which seemed a terribly romantic and grown-up gesture.
No, they weren’t real diamonds, nor did I believe they were, but I had never been given such a beautiful gift from a boy before in my entire life (unless you count that Tiffany tape, which I don’t).
That day, I felt like Molly Ringwald at the end of a John Hughes movie, triumphing in a happy ending after so many disappointments. It wouldn’t last (it rarely does), but I had that moment of surprise and joy, and that was enough to carry me for a little while.
I’m kind of worried about me and Mitchell. I can’t really put my feelings into words but I think it’s love. I don’t know if I’ve ever been in love or am now but I know that I have very strong feelings about Mitchell. I’m afraid of us breaking up. I might have grown too atached to him or something else but all I know is that I’m going through a big jumble of feelings and that right now I’m feeling pretty confused.
Yesterday Mitchell gave me a gift! It was a little stuffed puppy! It’s so cute!
Today was our play and I think we did pretty well.
There’s nothing like a gift to soothe lack-of-a-relationship anxiety.
At this point, Mitchell and I were still “officially” boyfriend and girlfriend and still had no liplock. Could you blame a girl for being tense about the situation? Oh well, at least I had some sort of token that showed he was still interested.
I’m surprised I didn’t mention anything about the play in my diary sooner, because Mitch and I had the two lead roles. Not only that, we played a married couple, which I undoubtedly saw as a sign from the universe that we were meant to be together and not the coincidence that it was in actuality. The play itself was about a town with no name and all of the dialog was made up of rhyming couplets. In the play, Mitch’s character and my own took opposing views on whether our town should be given a name or left as is. I don’t recall which side I was on, but since I was supposed to play a grown-up married woman, I decided to convey my character’s maturity by wearing a shawl. Because shawl=adult, right?
Back to this stuffed puppy. It was white and I kept it on my desk at home and probably mooned over it during the day and slept with it at night. I was never a fan of stuffed toys, but a stuffed toy from the boy you had a crush on was a different animal (that’s right, I went there, to the bad pun place). And this wouldn’t be the last gift I received from Mitchell, oh no…
Dear Journal, My birthday party was rad! It was so cool. I got a bunch of neat stuff.
Vito C asked me out and I said, “no.” When I told Mitch he said “pretty good” and I wanted to know what that was supposed to mean but he just said “forget it.” Mitch wanted to take me out yesterday but he has the flu so he will take me out next Saturday.
I really think that Mitchell wants to go steady with me. I don’t know, but it’s so easy being with him. I feel so comfortable and not nervouse.
I have heard some bad things about Mitch but I will believe when I see it! If I see it! I can’t wait until our date!
I hope he kisses me! I have to admit that I think I’m falling in love. You never can tell can you?
So here I was, twelve years old, feeling unexpectedly sophisticated and popular, and navigating new dating waters. I don’t remember what the negative gossip surrounding Mitch was, but I do know I didn’t bother to get details or ask Mitch about his bad reputation directly. Why bother with common sense when I could let my emotions rule? What’s the worst that could happen. As for Vito, while telling Mitch about him have been smart in that it made me seem desired by other guys, I wonder whether it also made me a little too available and eager to commit after one date because I was so quick to say no to another prospect. I wouldn’t have gone out with Vito regardless, but this may have shifted the balance of power a little more in Mitch’s favor.
I’m still not sure exactly what Mitch meant when he said “pretty good.” Was he complimenting my feminine wiles at being able to lure two suitors in a short space of time? Was he impressed that it was Vito? Was he pleased that I confided in him and showed him such loyalty early on? You never can tell…
Today I went out with Mitch and we had a lot of fun.
We saw Jason, Charles, Yanmei (the bitch!), Rose, Penny and Elaine at the movies.
What a coincidence! Really! But it was really fun anyway. And I think that me and Mitch will have something going. Also at the movies (we saw “back to the future II”) I found out that Charles wants to go with (make-out with) Rose but I know that Charles is just desperate (someone told me.) so he asked Rose and they will probably go out. He might like Rose but I still know that he’s desperate. Elaine is really upset because she really likes Charles and thought that he kind of liked her too, so now she’s depressed because she wanted Charles to ask her out. Oh well. I hope things work out between them because if they don’t things can get messy between Elaine and Rose.
Between these type of diary entries and watching old episodes of Dynasty via Netflix (if you’ve never seen a catfight between Krystle and Alexis you are missing out, my friend), I have about all the 80′s drama I can stand.
There’s nothing like going on a date only to find out that you’re being stalked by half a dozen of your classmates. That sort of thing only happens when you’re a kid or a character in a movie filled with wacky misadventures. As annoying as it was to have the group sitting a few rows behind us at the movie, I found it even more irksome that the entire crowd also followed us on the seven-block walk back to my apartment building. It gave us something to laugh about, but made the date more awkward by a factor of ten. The only real privacy Mitch and I had was the elevator ride up to the fifth floor and the three foot walk to my apartment door. There was no kiss and I don’t think we even held hands, so I’m not sure what made me believe that the two of us might “have something going.” But at least I was completely over my crush on Charles and could be a mere bystander in the unfolding love triangle surrounding him.
A few words on Back to the Future Part II. I remember enjoying the movie but feeling cheated that the it ended with a cliffhanger which reduced the film to a trailer for the third installment (the first movie did that too, but still felt more complete). I did love all the special effects, including the hoverboards, flying cars, and holographic theaters, and managed to suspend all disbelief regarding the time travel logic, so that I could enjoy the movie for entertainment’s sake. It’s something I wish I could do more often today.
J.D. likes me!!!!!!!!!! Really! My cousin asked him if he wanted to go out with me and he said, “yeah-no” because he thinks I’m a little too young for him but Anna is going to work on him.
I hope things work out.
Also I’m going camping again this year and I am going to bring this journal with me and keep track of everything exciting and worthwhile that happens. I hope nobody reads it because it has my deepest and darkest secrets.
Also I am taking the test for Mark Twain tomorrow and I hope I do well.
I will be so nervous tomorrow!!
Mark Twain was an accelerated middle school that required testing for admission. I would have been fine attending Seth Low, my local junior high school, but I was seen as one of the brighter students in school (permed hair notwithstanding), so I was encouraged to apply to the more smartypants schools like Mark Twain and Hunter College High School. I find it amusing that I wasn’t nervous at the time of writing the diary entry, yet felt that I could accurately prophesize my emotional state for the following day.
Let’s not even talk about the continued abuse of exclamation marks.
As for J.D. I don’t know why his ambivalence stirred such enthusiasm in me. The age difference was a real concern, as was the distance, (when you are a kid, the miles between Brooklyn and Staten Island are like New York-to-London grown-up miles). Regardless of the “work” Anna did on him, and J.D.’s lukewarm reaction to messengered confession of “like,” my dating life was about to take a surprising turn…
Tomorrow, guess who’s house I’m going to????
I really hate that a$%hole now. Yesterday he actually had the nerve to call me! What a s@#&head!!!!!! Maybe it will be a little fun.
Also I have a new love!!! I’m over Francis (who hasn’t called since the date) and back on the track!
His name is J.D.
He’s 15 and gorgeous. I love him!!!!
Just a few little problems.
1. He lives in Staten Island and I live in Brooklyn.
2. He doesn’t know I’m alive!
3. He’s 15 and I’m almost 12.
But I can fix all that (not the age or Staten Isl thing but the rest!).
The way I got to know him is that he is my cousin Anna’s brother’s friend and when I went over to her house I saw him there!
God I love him a lot!!!!!!
I will make sure that very, very soon, J.D. will like me as much as I like him! (maybe even more!)
J.D., I love you!
Also, me and Elaine might start our own baby-sitting club! Isn’t that great!!!! It will be lots of fun!
Total word count: 189
Total number of exclamation marks: 42
Aside from my ludicrous idea of what love was (which clearly did not include getting to know the person or even speaking to him much), I had lofty goals. I set out to win the heart of an older man and to create a babysitting empire to rival the fictional one in Ann M. Martin’s Babysitters Club series.
Not only did these books enlighten me about diabetes, they also made me believe I could easily make money baby-sitting while having lots of fun doing it. Never mind that I had no experience watching children, no business acumen, and wasn’t even old enough to drive. I had enthusiasm and a library card that caused plenty of lofty delusions.
Mom put the kibosh on the baby-sitting scheme just as Elaine and I were brainstorming flier ideas. She did not want her 11-year-old daughter to be responsible for other families’ children and I can’t say I blame her. I was initially upset, but it did free up more time for me to concoct a scheme to get J.D.’s attention. That’s a story with another chapter to go…
I don’t really like George anymore. I guesse the spark is gone. He asked me out and I said “I don’t know” and he just said “forget it.” I don’t really care. I’m over him. 10 more days of school.
I had a dream that Marcela and me were together and I asked if she wanted to be friends again and we started crying.
Such fickle hearts 11-year-olds have. Just a few months earlier I claimed to be “madly in love” with George, and here I was, responding to his attempt at courtship with indifference.
I still remember how nervous I was when he asked if I wanted to go on a date. The idea of asking my parents for permission seemed overwhelming and when I looked at his swarthy features, I didn’t know that I was properly attracted to him. Or maybe the whole concept of dating just seemed too daunting for me at the time. Whatever the case, I “guesse” felt the same ambivalence, considering he took back his request pretty much right away.
For some reason, despite keeping up with regular entries to the composition book journal, I still wrote in the Hello Kitty diary from time to time. It had three sections of pages: pink, then yellow, then blue. I think the completist in me was determined not to waste paper and make it to the blue pages, though I never even made it out of the pink ones. I ended up mostly sticking with the composition book, but these rare entries show a snapshot of where I was at the time with less filler (despite the repetition of content). A prime example:
I don’t like Charles anymore (he’s a pain in the !?!?!?) but I am madly in love with George. But the good thing is I think he also likes me! I hope he asks me out and that my parents will let me go out with him.
I still love Jonas and a lot!!! But I know it’s impossible for anything to happen with us, but me and George have a chance to get something started.
Me and Marcela (the bitch) are not friends anymore because she walked out on my birthday party which went even better without her.
-Bye- (4 now)
The last time I mentioned George was back in November, 1989, when he started to tell me something that I suspected was a confession of love (or at the very least, strong like). Despite rarely mentioning him in the other journal, I evidently still carried this torch for my opponent to the vice presidential race of our elementary school. What baffles me today is how I interpreted his ambivalence back then as reciprocated interest. Good thing you can cut an eleven-year-old some slack for being clueless in matters of dating (as for later years…well, we have plenty of time before we get to those comedies/tragedies of errors).
And Jonas. Oy, again with the cute third grade hall monitor. I’m awed and embarrassed at how many entries there are in both diaries devoted to Jonas, years after he graduated and long after I randomly saw him at the movies. (I’m also editing a lot of them out of this blog… you’re welcome). At the very least, I was aware of the futility of any relationship. It’s kinda difficult to “get something started” when you never see the person you allegedly love “and a lot.”
I know it seems like I throw around the word “love” a lot in my diaries, and I do, but let’s review a list of some of the other people I “loved” at the time (parents notwithstanding): Debbie Gibson, Corey Haim, Cyndi Lauper, Stacy Q, Blair from The Facts of Life, and Madison the mermaid (as portrayed by Daryl Hannah in Splash). Need I say more?
A few days ago I saw the movie Beaches with Rose and it was the best. My favorite movies are: Flowers in the Attic, Beaches, Big and License to Drive.
[Written in the margin:] I ♥ COREY Haim
How I wish I made a list of favorite movies like this every year while growing up. And books, at the top of which would have also been Flowers in the Attic (even though it was adapted into a sub-par movie, I still enjoyed it).
Reading V.C. Andrews novels was a rite of passage for young girls in the 1980′s (and maybe beyond?). The first time I came across these books I was nine and overheard a couple of girls talking about the plot of one of the sequels to Flowers in the Attic– either Petals on the Wind or If There be Thorns (gotta love the melodramatic garden-themed titles). When I expressed curiosity about the story, they said I was too young for those books. Which of course led me to seek out all of Andrews’ novels during my next library visit.
The books of V.C. Andrews have a haunting charm but also a creepiness in their themes. There’s usually a rags-to-riches story chock full of dark family secrets (rape, torture, murder, you name it). Then there is often some incest thrown in for good measure. Sometimes it’s unintentional, like cousins falling in love who don’t realize they’re related until one of the aforementioned family secrets is exposed. Sometimes it’s a flat out we’re-related-but-I-have-the-hots-for-you-anyway thing.
All the sex, murder, and mayhem chronicled in these books was probably not appropriate for young girls, and yet I can’t think of anyone who read the novels beyond their early teens. Flowers in the Attic is something of a coming-of-age guilty pleasure classic. The plot revolves around four siblings who are hidden away in their wealthy grandmother’s enormous attic for several years. There’s something fascinating and oddly romantic about their imprisonment, the way they cope with being locked up, and (spoiler alert) the way they ultimately escape. I always wanted to play around in an attic full of trunks containing old clothes and other antique accouterments (though not as much as I wanted to be a Goonie and hunt for buried treasure).
As for Corey Haim, what can I say… the eleven-year-old heart wants what it wants. After being thoroughly charmed by the him in The Lost Boys and License to Drive I developed a massive crush on the young actor. While his wise-cracking best friend Corey Feldman was arguably funnier, I found his habit of dressing like Michael Jackson bizarre and did not find him cute at all. My heart belonged to one Corey only and his name was Haim. This childhood obsession devotion led me to wallpaper a wall of my room with dozens of pictures of the teen heart-throb with carefully-torn pages from Tiger Beat, Bop, and other magazines dedicated to the worship of pretty young pop culture icons.
One of the things I loved best about Corey was his penchant for changing hair colors (a habit I would pick up within the next few years). In one photo he might have gelled back brown hair; in another he’d be edgier with black spiky hair; in yet another picture the hair would be red and artfully coiffed. The colors changed but the presence of copious amounts of hair product was a common thread. As we know, in the 198o’s cool hair equaled BIG hair, and Haim’s tresses defied gravity with the best of them. Oh, and his acting wasn’t bad either.
It wouldn’t be long before rumors of Corey Haim’s drug use started floating around. I wrote him a fan letter telling him that I was concerned about these rumors, and that my love would help him through any dark days, but he either did not read my letter or chose to ignore it. In later years, his addiction would lead to him selling his hair and teeth on eBay which I frankly still can’t bear to think about.
Instead, let’s focus on early 1989, when my wall of Corey was still glossy and my innocence was being only mildly tarnished by reading books I shouldn’t have been reading. It was a simpler time, a happier time.
Yesterday I gave Marcela her book and the letter she gave me, she didn’t say anything and I really don’t care.
I am not Nisa’s friend anymore either because she never cares about my feelings, only hers.
By the way I still really miss Jonas. And I still love him.
In case it’s not beyond obvious at this point, I was (and still am, truth be told) a fan of the dramatic gesture. It wasn’t enough to have Marcela storm out of my 11th birthday party. I couldn’t let her have the last word and wanted her to know the friendship was well and truly over. There was no better way to do this than return a book she lent me along with the letter she had written less than two months earlier asking us to be friends again. Much in the same way the end of a romance is often punctuated with personal belongings being returned, I found that such a gesture gave the end of my friendship with Marcela the gravitas (or, let’s face it, good old fashioned drama) it deserved.
Nisa was my best friend in elementary school, though I was also on shaky ground with her. It’s funny, because I remember being surrounded by friends during those years, but I don’t remember having so many damn conflicts with them. Were my preadolescent social skills that flawed? (Don’t answer that.) Is it common to have frequent quarrels with friends or was I that tempestuous and oversensitive? (Definitely don’t answer that.)
Whatever the case may be, Nisa and I would make up, but this was it for Marcela and me. Which always made me a little sad, because I thought she was so cool; not just because of her perfectly Aqua-Netted bangs, pretty handwriting, and the sassy way she snapped her gum. Marcela and I shared a resemblence, so I sometimes liked to pretend we were sisters. I also admired her sense of humor, smarts, and boldness. But in the end, I think we couldn’t find a way for our strong personalities to mesh. It’s a shame, because we had a hell of a lot of fun when we did get along.
(And let’s not even get into the whole Jonas thing. I’ll spare the excess entries where I’m mooning over him.)
I forgot to tell you about this crush I Had for two years: His name is Jonas P. and he just graduated. I will Never see him again but I will never forget Him.
I had many dreams about him but I now none of them will come true. one time I slept over Borya’s house and we talked about personal stuff and I told him about Jonas and he started discouraging me and telling me to forget about him.
I was so sad that night that I cried myself to sleep.
Jonas was my hall monitor in third and fourth grade and two years my senior. He had red hair, blue eyes and freckles, and I exchanged probably no more than five sentences with him during the the time we we attended the same elementary school. Back then, a two year age difference was like a 20 year gap today. The only reason he ever had to say anything to me was if I misbehaved.
Now I was a good kid, but I was also ridiculously smitten. I made a habit of talking during assemblies on purpose, so that Jonas would reprimand me. Scandalous, I know. Sometimes I even talked back to him. Once I really pushed my luck and he made me stand against the wall. I didn’t act up after after that because deep down I feared authority (still do, sometimes).
I didn’t know anything about Jonas besides his name and that he was cute and made my nine/ten-year-old little heart beat fast. I also knew that being in “love” with him was hopeless.
As much as I knew it, I didn’t need Borya to remind me how was hopeless it was and make me cry about it. That jerk.