Crush

Pooh and Tigger came for a Nashville visit a month ago, and to be honest, I really thought it was so that they could spend time with me. That’s been our pattern since birth, you see.  Once a month we spend a weekend together for going on 15 years now.  Turns out those kiddos did want to spend time with me, but that time needed to be in Franklin at Frothy Monkey and then in East Nashville near a wedding venue because either one or both members of Twenty One Pilots, or one of their siblings, was spotted at one or more of those locations, and there was a chance, the merest whiff of a shot, that we would spot Tyler Joseph or the other kid.  Josh Dun, I think. I should be ashamed that I can’t remember his name because I spent 48 hours talking about the band just a few weeks ago, but in fairness, Tyler Joseph is Pooh’s favorite.

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Josh on left, Tyler on Right

 

When I was 13 I developed an obsession with George Michael. My father was sure it was unhealthy but then my father has never been a teenaged girl.  Even though he gave himself eye sprains from the numerous bouts of eye rolling, he still gamely took me to the bookstore weekly so that I could buy the latest edition of Teen Beat which had loads of pictures of my boyfriend, George.  One time I picked out a special Wham! edition Teen Beat and clutched it to my chest, terrified the store would sell out in the time it took my father to pick out his Hot Rod publication.  I chattered with my dad all the way to the checkout line, all the way through it, and all the way home about how cuu-uuu-uuu-tteee George was in such-and-so picture, and when we got home I realized that I never released my eagle-strength grasp, thus we never paid for the magazine, thus my father had to drive me all the way back across town because I started crying because I was a thief.  I wallpapered my section of my room, the ceiling over my bed, and made book covers from those pictures bought over the two years I lived with my father.  I’m embarrassed to tell you that I also wrote fan mail and signed it: No One Loves Me, Jimmie.  Oh, the drama. I would be DEVASTATED if I never heard back.  I would DIE.

Newsflash: I didn’t die.

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Hottie, Hot, Hot

 

Social media has changed the way we fangirl now, so Pooh in particular spends an inordinate amount of time stalking her crushes on Twitter, where she does not have an account, Instagram, where she has two, and Snapchat et al. When we walked into Frothy Monkey (the girls ordered very sophisticated bottled chocolate milks), Pooh was immediately thrown into paroxysms of near-hysteria because one of the brothers of one of the band members “stood RIGHT HERE yesterday!”  We took selfies and stole cardboard coffee sleeves and gave two women the evil eye who dared sit where the brother sat just the day before.  I can’t believe their shirts didn’t start a smoke wisp from the daggers Pooh shot their way. When the wedding venue showed up in a feed, Pooh’s hands started shaking and her breathing became labored.  We drove by the location but could see nothing, so it was hard to tell if the tears in her eyes were from lack of seeing them or from the nearness of where they had potentially stood at some point over the weekend.

Just a few days ago, Pooh FaceTimed me three times in less than 24 hours to tell me about the eye photos with the slashes through it on the Twenty One Pilots Twitter page “which means something, what does it mean, Aunt Jimmie, I’m so excited, is it an album or new merch, what is it, I might die!” Then she frantically hung up and FaceTimed someone else and then got her mom and then me and then five more friends.  I tell you, these celebrities nowadays know how to market themselves.  I felt my own bit of hysteria over it and I can only name one Twenty One Pilots song and I never saw the eye.

The girl at the Frothy Monkey counter summed it up nicely when she said around Pooh’s hyperventilation, “Aw, I miss that in my own life. I loved that feeling and I remember it so well! It’s so exciting, and I envy them that.  I truly do.”  She was exactly right.  I miss it, too.

Speaking of teenage hysteria and true love, you can imagine the blow I suffered when we lost my boyfriend, George, over Christmas. People wanted to talk smack about him, something they had done his whole life, but I ignored them.  I don’t care that he was gay, I don’t care that he was arrested, I don’t care that he got fat.  I loved him with the purest 13-year-old heart and it broke when he died.

Martie, too, has had her own crushes over the years, and while I’ve never understood them, I’ve respected them. Sure, Sam Elliott is interesting to look at and his voice is panty-dropping, but outside of that, I don’t get it.  I’ll tease her but I know what is sacred and there are boundaries you simply don’t cross.  Like me, this year Martie lost her big hero when Chris Cornell died.  I saw it on the news that morning and within a very short time, I got the expected text:  Jimmie . . . . Chris Cornell.  I can’t stop crying.

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Martie, for you

 

Chris Cornell was one of those icons that gets under your skin, in your blood, and Martie discovered him during a formative time in her life. She was branching out, making friends out of new people, traveling to concerts, and funnily enough, connecting with my long-ago boyfriend who was just as enamored but in the dude way.  My sister and my boyfriend bonded in a way I could not, over their shared love of music.  It was a marvelous time, because I could happily read a book and listen to Wham! while they rode the KDF bus to Lollapallooza for a series of grunge concerts, something you could not have paid me any amount of money to do.  We all won.

Six months before Chris Cornell died, my ex-boyfriend died in a freak house fire, more of a loss for Martie than for me. Then she lost Chris Cornell.  When Martie started crying over that whole lost era, a dam broke and it was not a good day.  I couldn’t be there and I was the only one who would really get it, so Martie suffered on her deck by herself.  Pooh, a typical teenager, came barreling by to ask for something, looked at her mom’s tear-stained face and cocked her head to the side, questioning and likely eye rolling on the inside.

“What’s wrong,” asked Pooh.

What’s wrong. Oh, what a question.

“Chris Cornell died,” Martie explained, and typical of teenagers, Pooh couldn’t see outside herself to get it. So Martie explained it in a way Pooh would get it.

“My Tyler Joseph just died, Pooh. He’s gone.”

And then Pooh did the best thing any teenager who gets it can do. She simply hugged her mom.

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6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Martie
    Jul 11, 2017 @ 17:26:17

    Ok, so now I’m crying again! The best part of this story is that Pooh “got” me, if only for a moment.

    Reply

  2. Vonnie
    Jul 11, 2017 @ 19:16:36

    I still can’t believe Chris Cornell is gone. The only thing worse would be losing David Grohl…

    Reply

  3. Julie
    Jul 11, 2017 @ 23:22:36

    I don’t know most of the musicians of whom you speak but I have been to the Frothy Monkey – the one in Franklin and the one near Belmont – and I loved them.

    Reply

    • Love, Jimmie
      Jul 12, 2017 @ 06:25:23

      If it weren’t for other people making me listen to their own crushes, I wouldn’t know these musicians either. I preferred my own shameful pop music. Only George, my love.

      Reply

  4. craftycritter
    Jul 12, 2017 @ 20:49:23

    God your writing is amazing. I’m fighting back tears over the loss Martie felt just because of your words.

    Reply

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