A few nights ago I was hanging out with a friend. You know how it goes: some good food, a lot of wine, you’re laughing, you’re sharing, and BOOM! Someone thinks of a YouTube video that you just have to see right now. Something really poignant and relevant to what you’re talking about, and it’ll only take a second.
And that’s it. Your evening of sophisticated conversation devolves into a couple of idiots giggling maniacally on the couch. As you’re watching something totally random (like bad junior high skate-offs or something to do with zombies) you may pause to wonder how you got there.
And if you try really hard, you may be able to trace your YouTube history backwards – sort of like when your boss asks you for an update on your project and all of a sudden you’re thinking about hotdogs. And you wonder how did that happen?
So you play it backwards and realize that you were thinking about hotdogs because you thought about your cousin Don who threw up about five at a barbeque that time, and you thought about Don because he always wears socks with sandals, and you thought about socks with sandals because that’s what the guy you just met with about your project was wearing, and you thought about him because your boss asked about the project…
Other people think like that too. Right?
Our YouTube path went something like this:
I had to show my friend the Sesame Street take-off of Mad Men. She had to show me a parrot humping a guy’s head. Then we watched the Lady Ga-Ga Bad Romance music video, and then a spoof of it. Still thinking of Sesame Street, I showed her the muppets on 30 Rock. We cleared the pallet by re-watching Christopher Walken dancing to Weapon Of Choice.
This (of course) led to music hits from our childhood. Like Paula Abdul’s Rush Rush (featuring the ever-dreamy Keanu Reeves) and my personal favourite – Mariah Carey’s Someday.
I have to admit this here. When I was in junior high, I loved loved loved this song. The music video was on Video Hits (best TV ever to an 11 year old in the early 90s) all the time.
Maybe it moved me so much because I could really connect to the message. The video takes place in a school, where a shy awkward girl with frizzy hair and overalls has a crush on the cool boy, who ignores her. That’s me in grade seven! Frizzy hair and overalls included! Then there was beautiful Mariah — back when she still looked human and not like some slutty computer game animation — with her wild mane of curls and sporting a very sexy off-shoulder black sweater and high-waisted jeans. I wanted to be just. Like. Her.
I digress. So we’re watching all of these crazy videos from our past, and I’m hit with this memory. In grade seven I was part of a choir, and we went to Portland, Oregon on a tour. It was here I had my first experience with a movie store. This place was wall-to-wall movies. I’m talking hundreds and hundreds of VHS tapes.
After very careful consideration, I purchased Pump Up The Volume, which to this day I still believe is hands-down Christian Slater’s best movie.
And this is the part that I’d forgotten. I loved that movie so much, watching it all the time wasn’t enough. So I waited until my sisters were out and I had the living room to myself. I sat in front of the TV with my tape deck, and carefully recorded the whole movie’s audio track onto four tapes. I would listen to it whenever I could – mostly at night while my parent’s thought I was sleeping.
But I can’t be the only one that was this big of a dork in junior high. Sure, I’ve already confessed to wearing overalls, and that perm was a horrible idea. Then there was the glasses and braces and obsession with crackly tapes of Christian Slater talking me to sleep. But you all have equally embarrassing memories of your childhood. That you’ll share, so I won’t feel so bad.
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