So it’s the beginning of the week and I’m supposed to write a fun food and drink Blog, but this morning I find myself suffering from Jack Nicholson’s dilemma in the Shining and all I can write is MONKEES MONKEES MONKEES MONKEES MONKEES MONKEES.
Yes, I have lost my mind, but while doing so I realized a couple of great things.
Quick back story…
It was 1986, Michelle Chin invited me over for a sleepover, and our plan was to stay up all night. While flipping through TV stations to find a scary movie or something we shouldn’t be watching, we stumbled onto MTV that was showing a Monkees Marathon.
The Monkees? Who were these people and why were they on MTV? They were from another time, they looked different, they said things like GROOVY and DIG IT, they were like nothing we had seen before and I was mesmerized.
What truly sucked me in that night was a video of Micky Dolenz (they invented the music video by the way…that’s why MTV was promoting them) singing this song called “Goin Down”. I loved how quickly he sang the lyrics and the video was cool and psychedelic (a word I did not yet know).
My slumber party pal Michelle made it only one liter of Pepsi and 10 episodes through the night, but not me! I stayed up all night watching intensely and when my mother picked me up the next morning in her Yellow Cougar (yes, she drove a car named a Cougar) I was forever changed. For the next three years, The Monkees were all that I would eat, breathe, and speak.
It wan’t easy being the only girl at school that looked like Ralph Macchio. Now top that with being the only girl who was obsessed with an obscure band from another era called The Monkees. Well, let’s just say that the lunch room was very chilly some days.
But I would not give into peer pressure and hang posters of Bon Jovi or Duran Duran on my locker just to fit in. I wore my love for The Monkees on my sleeve with pride and remained a true blue undying fan…no matter how odd people thought I was.
Thankfully, I found a great pal who shared my joy; Lara Gad not only shared my loved for these four men from another planet, but she truly believed me when I told her “Lara, one day I am going to sing Goin Down for Micky Dolenz.” She even encouraged me to perform it in her bedroom and cheered me on when I got the dance steps down perfectly.
Micky would also end up being my first crush. Yes, a deep and painful crush that prompted me to ask my father the question, “Is it possible to die from a broken heart?” while driving home from my first Monkees concert at Jones Beach.
Fortunately, I did not die and my burning crush subsided once I discovered real boys and allowed myself to like music other than The Monkees. I even went on to be quite a functioning member of society, graduating college, falling in love (for real), getting married and starting a career.
And while life goes on, The Monkees still come with me, always tucked neatly in a special place in my heart. I am very lucky that by just turning on a song, I am able to travel back to a time in my youth filled with so much happiness and promise. We all have a little Monkee in our heart, and I urge you to take some time out of your busy adult life and travel back to that place that makes you smile. Find your freak flag and let it fly. I did this weekend and well…I’m still smiling.
And guess what!!?? This Thursday at The Beacon in front of 3,500 people, my dream that I shared with Lara Gad in her room in 1986 came true.
This once again makes true a statement that I’m a Believer of…if your mind can dream it…it can and will achieve it 😉
Look for the crazy girl in the front row with the hat on….that’s me!!!