Saturday, August 8, 2009

Jake Ryan

The recent passing of John Hughes has made so many of us reflective of that non-existent time in our lives when we were Blissful Outsider Teens. Look, there is no such thing. Any teen who is an outsider is not blissful. I should know; I was one. Or so I think. I spent my teen years and much of the rest of my youth in an insecure angst-ridden fog. This is what I remember, anyway. My account is debated by others I've run into over the years who remember me as one of the popular kids. Go figure. I guess if I was I was too insecure to know it.

But John Hughes' kids, these cinematic kids were outsiders and they knew it. But they also were rather self-assured, or at least some of them. Take Samantha in Sixteen Candles. She wasn't part of the in-crowd and she figured rightly that she had a Popsicle's chance in hell to get with the boy-man of this posting's title but she knew she had something. How else could she possible have the chutzpah to surrender her panties to a Geek she knew was worse off than her?

And while I'm thinking of it, about that boy-man... hubba hubba! He makes Zac Efron look like Jonathan Lipnicki in Jerry McGuire.

Thinking back to when Sixteen Candles was released... Wait a minute, wait a minute, I can't recall that one... ah, to when The Breakfast Club was released... Hey, yeah, that's right. I wasn't old enough to see it. It was an R-rated movie. I was in elementary school. So how did these movies and others of their time get to represent my teenage experience? John Hughes did have a great gift for creating real-ish characters that you found yourself laughing at while also identifying with. Who didn't pine for the High School Hottie back in the day. Thanks to Mr. Hughes, I got to have him. Well okay, not exactly. But I got to pretend I had him, vicariously, through Samantha Baker. Insecure Cute Girl gets Knightly Boy-Man. And that is rather satisfying.

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