OldDogNewTits












I am a child of the 80s. And everything that came with it. I listened to homemade mix tapes (usually peppered with Casey Casem’s voice) on my walkman, I wore acid wash Guess jeans with zippers at the ankles and I sure as hell wanted my MTV. I also had about 57 different celebrity crushes back in the day. So when the opportunity to see a whole slew of them (what’s the plural for teen idols? a bevy? a gaggle?) all in the same film presented itself back in 1983, my friends and I stood in line at the movie theater to buy a ticket. Actually, we stood in line four times to buy a ticket.

Anyone remember this timeless classic?

I had a cat named Sodapop. I think that perfectly demonstrates the extent of my commitment to this movie.

It was a golden era. Rob didn’t have a criminal record, Tom hadn’t started worshipping aliens, Patrick was in peak health and C. Thomas hadn’t donned blackface for one of the dumbest, least-credible and most racially offensive movies of all times. Yet.

But, as the film taught us, nothing gold can stay. And time marches on. But I so loved the movie. Which is why I saw it in the theaters more times than any other film in my lifetime. Until now.

Because I now have a daughter who loves movies … and young actors … and interesting stories about troubled kids … stories that get their roots in current kid lit. Which is how I broke my record. Just last weekend actually. When … for the FIFTH time … I saw the second film in the Hunger Games series, Catching Fire.  Here’s its WAY more intriguing trailer.

Now, before anyone thinks I’m an extravagant spendthrift, please allow me to “defend” myself and tell you a little about my five moviegoing experiences.

Viewing #1 – Opening night. A local theater was offering a double feature with the first and second movies. They had giveaways, trivia contests and prizes. Viv and I went together. It was held on a school night. I won the cool mom award that evening. (Paid by me)

Viewing #2 – One month later. My son has actually read all the books, too. And, while he isn’t the super fan my daughter is, he wanted to see the movie, too. So Viv and I brought him. Two times to the same movie isn’t that weird, right? (Paid by me again)

Viewing #3 – Vivien asked my mom (Hi, Mom!) for a movie gift card for Christmas so she could see the movie again. It was one of the top items on her list. And she got it. So what was I to do? (Paid by Viv’s grandmother)

Viewing #4 – Intrigued by Vivien’s obsession with the trilogy (she’s read each book multiple times), my mom started reading the series as well. When she finished the first book, we all watched the first movie (which we, of course, own) on DVD. When she finished the second book, she offered to take Vivien and I to see the movie with her. She knew I’d seen the movie three times already, so she treated. (Paid by Viv’s grandmother again)

Viewing #5 – With the holidays behind us, school back in session and the movie only playing in two theaters in town, I thought my big screen Catching Fire days were done. Then my dear friend (Hi, Heather!) gave us our belated Christmas presents. And what do you think she gave my daughter, her Godchild? Yep. A gift card to the movies which, at Vivien’s request, we used the very night we opened it. (Paid by Viv’s Godmother)

And, with that, history was made.

I broke my own personal record in the category of Number of Times Seeing the Same Movie in the Theater. (Shut up. It is SO a thing.) Honestly, besides getting to see my daughter light up like a Christmas tree five times, I love that I did it  … because I’m pretty freakin’ sure I’ll never get to six.

But then again, the third book has yet to be made into a movie. (sigh) Okay, Vivien. Game on.

For MamaKat’s writing prompt: Write something inspired by the word gold. I went with a Robert Frost poem. Sort of.

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For most of you, last weekend was merely the Easter holidays. In my household, however, we also celebrated another big event – the premiere of a new iCarly episode. They’re like red carpet affairs around here and my kids wouldn’t dream of missing one. Fortunately for them, I actually like iCarly. It’s clever and pop-cultured for my generation. And don’t even get me started on Spencer. The man slays me. So, in addition to our usual Easter Eve traditions, my family also took in this new episode, featuring the latest and greatest teen sensation, One Direction.

Later that same night, they were on TV a second time as the SNL musical guest. They’re just starting to take off in America and I’ve decided to excuse the fact that they’re classified as a boy band because their British/Irish accents are so cute. I suspect we’ll be seeing them covering bedroom walls everywhere very soon. (I miss Tiger Beat.)

Anyway, it made me start thinking about all of the famous faces I’ve fallen for over the years. Some names have stood the test of time while others … well, I’ll let my teenage bedroom walls do the talking.
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What can I say? My parents were obviously very cool.

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So, at the expense of my dignity, I’m sharing a sometimes-embarrassing-but-always-honest glimpse at some of my favorites over the years. Please enjoy laughing at my childhood.

Donny Osmond (1976-79) And I’m not ashamed to admit it.

Shaun Cassidy (1977-78) Okay, I’m a little ashamed.

Christopher Reeve (1978-1983) Who doesn’t love SUPERman?

Greg Evigan (1979-81) He worked with a chimp. What was not to like?

John Schneider (1979-82) Don’t judge. He was the style at the time.

Christopher Atkins (1980) Remember the naked guy from Blue Lagoon?

Rick Springfield (1981-85) For his music and the General Hospital thing. Truth be told, I just saw him again in concert in 2008. Oh, and in 2009 & 2010.

Maxwell Caulfield (1982) Remember the British guy from Grease 2? Yeah, me neither. When I learned he was married to an actress who was 18 years his senior, I moved on. He was 23 and she was 41. I guess Demi isn’t quite the pioneer she’s credited to be.

John Stamos (1982-83+) As long as I was already watching General Hospital, right? And he’s actually one of the few who still hangs on for me today. He’s just so pretty.

Adam Ant (1982-84) I loved his two big albums of the early 80s and some of the earlier Antmusic stuff. Alas, I never got to see him in concert when he came to New Orleans. I had a ticket to the show but was punished (for a sizable infraction, I might add) that very night. Fortunately, I somehow managed to pick up the pieces and get on with my life.

Duran Duran (1982-85) All five of ‘em. I once won a contest for being able to rattle off the names Simon Le Bon, Nick Rhodes and the Taylors (Andy, Roger & John) in rapid succession. None of the Taylor boys are related. You know these things if you’re a real D2 fan.

Rob Lowe & C. Thomas Howell (1983) I saw The Outsiders four times at the movie theater. And with prices averaging $3.15 per ticket that year, that means I spent more than $12 on that one film! I can still recite from memory every word of the Robert Frost poem used in the movie. But I honestly never saw the allure of the other five guys. I don’t think they did much of anything else after that anyway, right? (Wink.)

Bart Conner & Mitch Gaylord (1984) What? I had Olympic fever. I think it was very patriotic of me.

Kevin Bacon (1984) But only in Footloose.

David Lee Roth (1985-87) From VH’s Jump to his own Just A Gigolo. I have no idea why. Please forgive me.

Davy Jones (1986-87) Thanks to MTV’s decision to air his old series. I loved these guys and even managed to see them in concert on a few reunion tours. (ODNT Trivia – They played, ironically, at the Audubon Zoo here in NOLA back in the day and one lucky girl got to kiss him for a photo. Guess who? Don’t tell my Dad!)

Harry Connick, Jr. (1990-93+) An amazing New Orleans talent who actually ran in similar circles to mine in high school. I listened to his music a lot back then and even used it at my wedding. And I loved his stint as ‘Leo’ on Will & Grace. He still hangs on for me today, too.

Johnny Depp (1993+) I’m not even going to put an end date here as he’s stayed at the top of the list. He didn’t catch my attention in Elm Street or Jump Street. But once he appeared in the back-to-back films Benny & Joon and What’s Eating Gilbert Grape I was sold. And I’m still buying nearly 20 years later.

Brad Pitt (1998) But only in Meet Joe Black (which oddly I never even saw in its entirety). Although all of his post-Katrina New Orleans work has put him back on the list in recent years.

Ewan McGregor (2001-2003) His song and dance stuff like Moulin Rouge & Down with Love are what put him on the list.

Orlando Bloom (2003-2007) But only in the Pirates movies. He’s Johnny Depp, Jr.

Sportacus (2004) From the God-awful children’s show, LazyTown. Not the (Icelandic) actor, the character. Make of that whatever you want.

Hugh Jackman (2004+) And, oddly, it all began with his unpredictable turn to play Peter Allen in the Broadway production of The Boy from Oz. What can I say? I love a song and dance man. Apparently, even a flamboyantly bedazzled one.

Patrick Dempsey (2007) But only in Enchanted.

Zac Efron (2007) He’s the new Rob Lowe.

Will Arnett (2009) It wasn’t until after Arrested Development ended that I learned to really appreciate this guy. Sorry, GOB.

Robert Downey, Jr. (2009) Honestly, he’s probably been on and off the list for years, but I’ve only recently started to admit it.

Bret McKenzie (2009+) The cuter half of Flight of the Conchords.

Robert Pattinson (2009) When my friend dragged me unwillingly to see New Moon. Fine, whatever. I’m Team Edward.

Josh Duhamel (2010) Starting with Ramona & Beezus. And my girl wonders why I’m willing to watch that movie again and again with her.

Flynn Rider (2010) From Tangled. What? Is it THAT weird that I’m including a cartoon character? You know what? Don’t answer that.

John Gordon Levitt (2011+) Based purely on his likable character in 50/50.

Wow. You’re still here? Well, if you actually made it through MY whole list, I want to know about YOU. Who was on YOUR walls? Boys can play, too.

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Wanna see this post in dreamy Tiger Beat technicolor? Click here, ODNT readers!

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{March 21, 2012}   An Ode to 1983

Here’s my goofy, little entry for this week’s Trifecta Writing Challenge. I often go with the first idea that pops into my head.  This was one of those times.

RULES: All entries must be between 33 and 333 words and need to include the following word using its third definition:

clean (adjective)

1: free from dirt or pollution
2: unadulterated, pure
3 a : free from moral corruption or sinister connections of any kind <a candidate with a clean record>

   b : free from offensive treatment of sexual subjects and from the use of obscenity <a clean joke>
   c : observing the rules : fair <a clean fight>

* * * * * * * * * *

A year in the life of my childhood

* * * * * * * * * *

The year was 1983

The times? They were so simple

Cabbage patch dolls everywhere

So hideously-dimpled

*

Reagan was the president

And Swatch entered the scene

As did jellies, Rubik’s cubes,

And McNuggets as cuisine

*

My fashion was inspired by

Madonna, Flashdance, Lauper

‘Cause MTV was everywhere

So I looked like a pauper

*

The music was my favorite

Boom box on every shoulder

From Dexy, Prince or Men at Work

(It so sucks getting older)

*

For film, we had The Outsiders,

Big Chill and Valley Girl

And Vacation with Chevy Chase

Gave the Griswolds to the world

*

But I was still a little girl

My parents weren’t mean

They just wanted to be sure

What I saw and heard was clean

*

Enter Mr. Cosby

And his one-man show ‘Himself’

I must have pulled it fifty times

Off our VHS tape shelf

*

The jokes, they were all perfect

The dentist chair he faked

I won’t forget the joke about

“Dad gave us chocolate cake!”

*

Thank you for the memories

Of this, a lifetime chapter

But most of all I thank you, Bill

For all my family’s laughter

* * * * * * * * * *

Please enjoy this little blast from my past.

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et cetera
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