Sweet 16

Ode to Blue Satin and Side PonytailsJuly 14, 1991. I woke up early that morning. Who wouldnt? It was my 16th birthday. I was going to get my driver’s license, and then I had a date with the love of my life. He was tall, dark, and handsome, and I loved him dearly. (He and I pictured LEFT, he removed so he never has to be associated with anyone wearing blue satin. Poor guy.) Life was grand. We had been together 9 months, which was the longest I had ever dated anyone. For Christmas, he had given me an ID bracelet with my name engraved, and “Love, HIS NAME” on the back. I knew this birthday would rock b/c he had already shown himself to be a romantic gift-giver. I dreamed about the upcoming date for weeks. I have always been a hopeless romantic, so I was planning for something big.

So – I go to take my driver’s test. I failed. Seriously. And it SUCKED.

So what did I do? I could NOT tell the boyfiend I idolized that I had failed. So, I did what I always did when crisis loomed, I lied. I told him the line was too long and Dad didnt want to wait. It really didnt matter too much b/c Dad wasnt going to let me drive the first night I had my license anyway.

So, his Mom – who I loved – took us to our date. We saw a movie and ate dinner. I dont remember much of either because of what happened after. I basically deleted all else from that night as important enough to store on my mental hard drive.

We get in his Mom’s van after dinner, and he gives me a gift. I dont even think it had been wrapped. It was a Moonie. Okay – here is your description. It was a Fat Man Doll that had suction cups on his back side. That description right there is probably enough for you to feel my pain. But, the fat-suction-cup-man has a PURPOSE. You stick him to the interior car window. It comes with one of those squeeze pumps like a blood-pressure cuff. You squeeze the pump. He pulls his pants down and MOONS the neighboring cars.

Now. If that did NOT fill my sweet 16 fantasy, what could?

I actually dug through the box later at home to make sure he hadnt hidden a heart locket or something in there.

You know what was worse than GETTING the Moonie?

1) Having to tell my friends – who were all dying to know what he got me for my 16th bday b/c we were giggly teenagers and I was the only one with a “long term boyfriend”. I mean – they were waiting for me to call when I got home, the anticipation was that great.

2) Having to make it sound like it was EXACTLY what I wanted b/c I didnt want them to know I was disappointed. Do you know how hard it is to muster up excitement over a damn Moonie???

All of THAT on top of the fact that I did NOT have my driver’s license.

Yeah – he dumped me a week or so later. I knew that was coming. I knew that non-relationship inspired gift represented something grander, but I loved him. I harbored STRONG feelings for him all through high school. We stayed friends because we still were both struggling with some of the same problems. He was my first true love and my first true heart break. I think I still have the cards/gifts etc in a box at my Dad’s.

So – as you see, the story – in retrospect, is pretty freakin’ hilarious. How else would I have kept my brother’s girlfriends entertained over the years. He’ll prob even make me tell that story to his KIDS someday.

I saw that boyfriend at a club in Knoxville several years ago. It was after my ex-husband and I split, but before I met Donnie. He kissed my hand. He was going back to Montana to study geology, or something like that. I was severely flustered. A girl really needs preparation before running into her first heartbreak. I wish I had been dressed cuter.

I should have told him “Thank You” that night for all he did for me in terms of coping with personal issues. I should have told him I often think about his Mom and how strong she was. Or maybe, I should have simply DEMANDED a new sweet 16 gift, right then and there. Or at least demanded he buy me a drink. Alas – I demanded nothing because I was paying my tab when I saw him, I was leaving, and flustered. But he kissed my hand, which completely boosted my ego as a woman recently divorced.

I think that makes up for the Moonie.

1 Comment

One thought on “Sweet 16”

  1. That’s a horrible gift! I seriously doubt I could have mustered any sort of excitement over a moonie. First loves, though, are amazing. I just found a card from my first love in the attic while I was digging for Christmas decorations. It was signed “I will always love you, Josh”. I seriously doubt he still loves me!

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