Thursday, February 18, 2010

Blast from the past.

The following is a repost from when I first started writing this blog. I seem to be fighting something off yet again, and I just can't deal (with anything) this week. Don't fret, I have more great stories in the works - just you wait!

Until then, please enjoy the following tale of dorky teen angst, waiter-stalking, and crappy teenage cruise-mobiles. And I'd like to give a shout-out to Girl in the Room for giving me the idea to repost this.

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From December '08

Blast From the Past

This has been a busy week and I'm glad that's it's finally coming to an end - although now it's looking like the weekend might be just as busy. Bear is the "Star Student" in his class next week, and I have to make him a poster, a journal complete with pictures of him hanging out with the class bear "Ted," and snacks to share with his classmates - it's amazing how much work I have now that he's in school. And of course he has a winter play next week, a student-teacher conference, and then there's the holidays to consider...anyway, we're busy.

C is going out of town until Tuesday, and the kids and I will be left to fend for ourselves for the next few days. Bear and Maggs really love their weekends with their dad, so I've come up with lots of fun things for us to do in order to distract them from his absence. Today I took the kiddos for a ride on the carousel that's by our neighborhood Whole Foods, and then we had dinner at Chili's.

I haven't eaten at a Chili's in years, but it seemed like a good idea since it's kid-friendly (my main objective in selecting this particular restaurant), and there's one a couple of blocks from Bear's taekwondo class. For a brief period during my teen years, I frequented Chili's with two close friends on a pretty regular basis. In addition to driving our crappy cars aimlessly around the suburbs (more on my crappy car in a minute), we took great pleasure in eating out as often as our jobs permitted - and I'm not talking about Taco Bell or Burger King (perish the thought!), I'm talking about real restaurants, pretty much every day after school (and no, we did not weigh 300 pounds).

For a while Chili's was the destination of choice, and for a short time we decided that we were in love with one of the waiters that worked at Chili's because we thought he looked like Neil Finn from Crowded House (perhaps not most teen-aged girl's idea of a heart-throb in the early 90's, but to each her own). I'm not sure that he even served us food more than once or twice, but we sure thought he was the cat's pajamas.



Neil Finn. You know you want him.

On the subject of my crappy car: it was a 1984 dark red Ford Thunderbird with paint chipping off of most of the passenger-side door (I always suspected that it had been spray-painted by the previous owner). It had no AC, which wouldn't have been such a big deal if we didn't live in a place that can sometimes reach 120 degrees in the summer; that car felt like an oven in July. This car also made strange noises when it accelerated, which deterred several friends from wanting to ride with me (although if I'm being completely honest, my less than stellar driving skills were more likely the real reason people politely declined a ride in my "cruise-mobile").

Tonight when, coincidentally, I heard "Something So Strong" playing on Chili's piped in musak, it really took me back to those days. I laugh at the absurdity of our crush on the Chili's waiter (sort of a la William H. Macy's crush on the braces-wearing bartender in Magnolia, but in a funny way and, I'd like to think, less pathetic. We thankfully possessed enough self-awareness to recognize how ridiculous we were, and derived great pleasure from making fun of ourselves. I guess some things never change).

I also laugh at our version of teen angst: driving around the 'burbs in crappy cars, cranking "How Soon is Now?," and debating about which restaurant to eat at after school. (As I recently pointed out to A, we probably could have afforded better cars if we didn't spend so much money on restaurants. But as usual, our love of food prevailed). I suppose we could have been using illicit drugs and having unprotected sex (I saved that for my mid twenties. Good times.), but that just wasn't a part of our journey. We may have been dorks (okay, we were defintely dorks), but now that I have my own little girl I hope, no I pray, that someday she'll be a dork too.


24 comments:

Amy said...

I so miss my high school days with my girls! We had very similar "teen angst" as you and your friends.

While there is nothing that would make me want to return to high school, I did have some really great times mixed in with the acne, mean girl cliques, and the uncertainty of the future.

Amie said...

Good times, indeed. Thanks for the repost and the HOT pic of Neil meeoow! The older I get, the happier I am that I was a total dork as a teenager cause I got to be innocent longer than most. I kinda hope my daughter follows in my dorky footsteps.

Existential Waitress said...

meoooww!!! I almost just peed my pants laughing! We're probably the only two getting all hot and bothered right now. Still laughing...

Existential Waitress said...

And me too BTW - so glad I was a dork for practically forever. Actually I still am a dork - who am I kidding here?

blueviolet said...

We just drove around too! It was so ridiculous! I can't believe I was entertained by the stuff we did!

MiMi said...

Driving around was SO fun. We "cruised the gut." No crap. That's what we called it. LAME-O!!

Tracie said...

We cruised the heck out of our 2 stoplight town every Friday and Saturday night. Honestly there wasn't much else to do. The only restaurants we had were McDonald's and Pizza Hut. Very sad.

Bathwater said...

I think driving is a ritual in every kids life and I still hang out where the waitresses are hot when I get out.

Nice post from the past. I can't help doing that myself once in awhile they always seem better when we look back at them.

leigh said...

Dorks rule! As well as the movie Magnolia, The Smiths, hot waiters, and crappy cars.

elzimmy said...

I so identify with this...so funny too that one of the categories for the post is teen angst because I just wrote a post tonight about how my 11 year old is already boarding the angst train. Good times.

DG at Diary of a Mad Bathroom said...

I would have totally followed you in and swooned over that waiter. And the Smiths were also part of the soundtrack of my (distant and crumbling) youth. Sigh.

SPEAKING FROM THE CRIB said...

i do not miss my high school days of the over-possessive boyfriend and breaking up with him every 5 minutes. now college ... that's another thing!

Erin said...

I used to go to Chili's a lot when I was in high school, too!

And sadly, when I was pregnant with my twins....one day I was craving an Awesome Blossom. HAD.TO.HAVE.IT.

So I went to Chili's. Alone. And ate an entire Awesome Blossom by myself. I think they're like 3500 calories or something. I justified it as a little over 1,000 calories for me and then for each of the babies. LOL!

Grateful Twin Mom said...

LOL about hearing the Crowded House song in Chili's. As if you weren't all reminiscent already.

ModernMom said...

:) Your version of teen angst and mine are very much the same...we had it good! Thanks for the flashback.

Organic Motherhood with Cool Whip said...

This is so funny!! And I just reposted an old blog too because this week has been insane for me and I couldn't think of anything new to write. You are such an awesome writer and every personal anecdote you write about is edgy and funny and real. I wish I could do that, but when I try I come off sounding like Martha Stewart on crack. And no one wants to read that. BTW I was wondering if you might want to do a guest post on my blog? I would be forever honored and grateful if you wanted to cuz you, my bloggy bestie, not Neil, are the cat's pajamas.

Alyssa said...

Thinking back on teen angst...now that I have my own little girl, I think I want to cloister her. Is that still possible without her consent?

Maven said...

Yet another reason why we're friends: The Smiths.

I got onto them in first year university while on a two month binge as a vegetarian. The song "Meat is Murder" was brilliant.

I alos loved the song from the Pretty in Pink soundtrack "get what I want this time"

Therese said...

I now feel I can admit that as a teenager I had a RAGING crush on David Letterman. When my girlfriends would recoil in horror at my love proclamations to Dave my response was always "C'MON! That man can wear a suit!". Weird for a fifteen year old girl.

And please OH PLEASE let my daughter be a dork!!

Kristin said...

OMG, Chili's was THE high school hangout for Meg and I. Ahhhhhh, memories...Glad to hear you liked your necklace!

Andrea (ace1028) said...

Teen angst is too much fun, isn't it? We used to go to Red Robin in our mall, and another place that is totally escaping my mind right now. I'm so happy to have a Red Robin nearby where I am now, as it is a warm and fuzzy kind of meal when I go there! Ah, memories!

Sarah said...

This post totally took me back! That's completely what my friends and I did, as well. Cruise around the burbs, and try to go out for food as much as possible. It was always fun times. I was a total dork too. And I really hope that for my daughter. Really.

Amie said...

And don't forget Billy's and the Roman Finger.

Existential Waitress said...

O.M.G. - I'd totally forgotten about The Roman Finger! And don't forget Fridays' (I noticed last week the one on Flamingo is closed now, like so many others in this economy). And Chipaula's, Fortunato's, The Four Kegs, how the list goes on...