Disclaimer: This post contains musical references that Gen Ys might not get.
I’m sure it would shock you all to hear that I was boy crazy as a teenager! No – really. Let me tell you, there’s no sadder creature than a lust crazed adolescent girl who can’t pull a boyfriend. The reasons for my lack of appeal with the opposite sex were complex and nuanced. Actually – it was pretty simple. I’ll let the picture do the talking.
This 25 year old photo has the clarity of a mud puddle but you can make out that I have cropped bleach blonde hair and am wearing a waist coat over a white kaftan. All this took place in Sutherland Shire in the aftermath of the puberty blues era. To say that my aesthetic was not appreciated would be the understatement of the 1980s. ( Ironically not much was understated during that decade). Yet I was not going to submit to the Billabong label and lie on the beach doused in baby oil to win popularity points. Oh No – I wasn’t selling out my individuality. That would be conforming and to our posse, conforming was the very worst thing one could do. We were down with punk icon Jello Biafra and the Dead Kennedys accusing our peers of being “chicken shit conformist like your parents”*
So here I was an androgynous rebel without a clue who also happened to be doing very well in class. It was a recipe for massive unpopularity. Whilst the bronzed surfie kids were chanting away to The Angels – ” Am I ever gunna see your face again? No way get f#@ked. F#@k off!”, we were flouncing about with air gladiolus quoting The Smiths. ” A dreaded sunny day, so lets go where we’re happy and I’ll met you at the cemetery gates. Oh Keats and Yates are on your side. But you lose. Because Oscar Wilde is on mine”.*
The irony is that I had never read Keats, Yates or Oscar Wilde. In my defense, most of those kids headbanging to the Radiators “Give me Head” were still virgins and weren’t singing from experience either.
Our gang would make fun of glam rock bands like Bon Jovi because they had big hair and wore makeup.
Yet I worshipped at the shrine of The Cure and Robert Smith. I wrote “Robert Smith is God*” written multiple times on my pencil case. I managed to squeeze the text in between the drawings of bats, spider webs and tombstones. It was truly a work of art.
I try to put a positive spin on Teen ‘Abulous by comparing her to the iconic cartoon character Daria but without her deadpan cool. Another major point of difference was that Daria managed to snare boyfriend – a hot, yet sensitive college boy called Tom.
Not only did Daria land Tom, her bestie’s rocker brother was crushing on her too. Looks like its time to ditch this comparison. Its just not working for me.
Every blogger worth her salt has posted a humiliating High School Formal photo. Here’s mine.
Although I was loving myself stupid in emerald green taffeta, I did not have a date to the School Formal in 1988. I don’t recall actually dancing with boys at the event. Nor did I pick up at Carmens Night Club afterwards. T’was a fitting end to a miserable six years.
Meanwhile at a neighboring high school a gorgeous Eric Stolz look alike was kicking serious academic butt in Physics and Four Unit Maths. You’d think that would be a honey trap for the lovely young ladies of the Shire. Alas teen Dadabulous was experiencing a similar level of rejection as I. It wasn’t his attire or musical taste so much as his penchant for Dungeons and Dragons and coding up his own computer games from scratch that put them off. Little did they realize that this prodigious behaviour would lead to a lucrative career. As the Bible tells us “the geek shall inherit the earth”. IT’S YOUR LOSS BIATCHES!!!
Who were you in High School? Were you my sworn enemy? Can we be friends now?
PS: I’d like to take the opportunity to apologize to my parents for my obnoxiousness and wankery. I do not apologize for the music.
I’ll leave you with some memories of the time when black was the new black.
Rachel from the Very Inappropriate Blog http://theviblog.wordpress.com/ wants to play musical crumpets, so who’s missing from this list? Yo Lara – I’ll source some choice vintage Kilby for you.
* Dead Kennedys 1986 from The Bedtime For Democracy album which ROCKS.
* The Smiths 1985 from The Queen Is Dead which like totally ROCKS.
* Not God but his song writing has IMO stood the test of time.