I've decided that I'm gonna get rid of my creaky old website so that I may at last discontinue my MSNtv service (currently draining me of two bucks a month). I've only been keeping it because I have so many pieces of writing there. So I figure I'll just start reposting them here so, you know, I'll have them. Of course I can't just cut-and-paste the damn things; I have to rewrite them as I go, because nothing I write is ever fucking finished. There's a word for that, but I'm afraid to think about it too long.
I'm starting with a list of the crushes I had growing up, mainly because it was sort of buried on the old site. It was originally subtitled "A Timeline in Time," for no reason other than I used to get high a lot. I've added some pictures, but, unsurprisingly, many of the ones I really wanted on here turned out to be somewhat obscure. Anyway, on with the crushing!
Any of your various Rankin and Bass characters: Clarice, Rudolph's girlfriend (those eyelashes, that polka-dot bow--yowsa!) Santa Claus' wife Jessica when she was a young piece-of-ass redhead; Francesca, the chick from Mad Monster Party.
Penelope Pitstop. Do you have to ask?
Kristy MacNichol. This was dragged outta me one mid-seventies day as Maria Pa-pee-ya and I discussed the merits of different TV shows while sitting on the back of my family's toad-green Buick Skylark. Maria disparaged Kristy's looks, and I had no choice but to stand up for her.
Carole, I think, from The Magic Garden. Or was it Paula? Anyway, you know which one I mean.
Lisa Whelchel, pre-Facts of Life. She was on a syndicated revival of The Mickey Mouse Club that aired after school on WNEW Metromedia 5. This would be around '77. I know I was an early admirer, so presuming the show debuted in the fall, I must have been 8 when smitten. I remember reading an article about the show in some kiddie magazine and forlornly calculating the disparity in our ages. Nowadays she's pushing homeschooling merch for folks who don't like their kids learning of the evils of evolution.
Mackenzie Phillips. Later came to my senses and switched allegiance to Valerie Bertinelli.
Cheryl Tiegs. Looking back, this one strikes me as odd, yet I can't deny that I kept a poster of her on my wall at a surprisingly young age. I recall it as showing Cheryl sopping wet under a waterfall or something. Searching the internets, however, indicates this poster exists only in my imagination. Anyway, I have no idea where the poster came from. (This was also, of course, the era of Fawcett and Somers. I remember some patronizing adult bending over to ask me who I wanted to marry when I grew up. Clearly a victim of media brainwashing, I answered simply, "A blonde.")
One of the girls from a later season of Zoom, whom I have since learned was named Tishy, if you can believe that. I couldn't find a pic, but I think she was one of those gals who initially struck me as odd-looking, then grew on me. She had a Boston accent, which I thought was cute. I've heard that during one of the show's rap sessions, she opined that different races and ethnicities shouldn't mix. (They left that in?) I'm sure there were other Zoomers I dug, but I only specifically recall her.
Wendy Schaal, Vicki on It's a Living (or Making a Living if you prefer). What a cutie she was, in that little waitress uniform. She was later in Innerspace. Turns out she's the daughter of comic actor Richard Schaal (if you saw him you'd know him), which made her Rhoda's step-daughter, go figure.
Of course, the girls of St. Pius X. There was Regina A____ (who kinda looked like Wendy Schaal, come to think of it), but come on, who didn't have a crush on her? I believed in God for one day---the day she noticed me enough to call me "weird." I did a report on the eye in front of the class once, and, as I had practiced so many times in my head, I pronounced "retina" to rhyme with her name. Mrs. Butler corrected me, and, bizarrely, I was sure I had just somehow made my crush known. I was always a blusher, and right then you could have overcooked a Denver omelet on my face. I'm surprised they didn't call an ambulance.
Linda R______ and I went the full eight years together, but I only dug her the last few months of eighth grade, roughly the same time I discovered (and painstakingly perfected) the sin of self-abuse. I considered asking her to a dance, but before I could make my move it was cancelled because our class was a bunch of uncontrollable ne'er-do-wells. That was pretty much that. I bet she would've said yes--she had given me a Christmas card in the fifth grade right before holiday break. It said, 'Don't tell anyone, but I really like you." I maliciously yelled to her across the room, "Don't worry, I won't!" She just laughed. Later at home I tore the card into tiny pieces and stuffed them way down into the bathroom trash can. I can't deny feeling an immediate twinge of guilt over that. I'm sure there were plenty of other plaid-skirted Catholic cuties that aroused my interest over the years...
Somewhere between The Magic Garden and Lisa Welchel you could place what I can only describe as possible homo crushes: Tom Seaver, pitcher for the Mets, whose baseball card I kept tacked to my wall despite having negligible interest in the sport; and the Keane Brothers, two musical teens who had their own summer replacement series on CBS in 1977. Actually, I think I mostly liked them in an envious way, as they played instruments and were on TV. I even had them on my wall, on a cover torn from the Newsday TV guide. For the record, I also had an 8 x 10 of Lee Majors as Steve Austin on the wall beside my bunk-bed (I was a bottom, eh-heh-HEE!), but this was from the fan club package. I recall no faggy fixation, just fan admiration.
Found this pic on a site even more improbable than mine. When I found this, I hadn't seen the boys in well over twenty years. I am relieved to report no libidinous stirrings at the sight of the frankly rather homely brothers. (And although there is an uncanny resemblance, they're no Lisa Whelchel, that's for sure!) Man, check out those Frampton-at-the-renaissance-faire shirts! No wonder I launched a pre-pube bomb-pop, huh?