Below is an excerpt from my book “Fairly Odd Mother: Musings of a Sightly Off Southern Mom.”
In the newsroom one day, we started talking about childhood pop star crushes. Mine was Donny Osmond, who made girls melt when he sang “Puppy Love.” Oh, how I wanted to grow up to be Mrs. Donny Osmond.
But then love’s bloom faded, which is probably for the best because in recent years I’ve begun to suspect the Osmonds are responsible for global warming.
The glow given off by their collective teeth had to have some impact on the ozone layer for all those years. I don’t see how Al Gore could have overlooked this theory, except that he never smiles and therefore it didn’t occur to him his book should have been called “An Inconvenient Tooth.”
But when I was 10 or 12, nothing was as exciting as a teenage boy in a tight, mini-Elvis jumpsuit, dripping fringe, sweat and charisma. I would watch my television and bask in the glow of Donny’s grin, dreaming one day I could polish each and every tooth…
Oh…OK, I’m back.
The change in boy bands since then is disturbing. Can you imagine Justin Timberlake wearing a fringed jumpsuit and singing, “You’re too sweet and innocent for me” instead of grinding his hips and bringing SexyBack?
Remember Leif Garrett? I didn’t like him because his Farrah-Fawcett feathers were prettier than mine and his satin jeans were tighter. No one felt more vindicated when he grew up bald and skanky looking. ’Do rags are not a good look for men over 40 who spent many years doing drugs and their faces look like it. What? I’m just sayin.’
Then there were Shaun and David Cassidy and, for those a little older than me, Bobby Sherman, but he was always singing about some girl named Julie, which was a deal-breaker for me.
When Baby Girl was young, it was N Sync. Oh, and New Kids on the Block. I guess that name was all well and good when the group’s members were teenagers but, really, didn’t anyone plan beyond those first few years of fame? I guess Skanky Old Dudes on the Assisted Living Floor didn’t have the same ring to it. Kidding! (Not really)
Donnie Wahlberg and gang are still pretty cute, in a dad sort-of-way. They even still dance in unison, complete with synchronized spins, as evidenced by the video for their new album: “Skanky Old Dudes Perform Songs to Rinse Your Dentures By.” Kidding again. (And again, not really)
Who was your teenage crush? Tell me in the comments whose poster was on your bedroom wall…