So many awkward moments leading up to that first kiss make those early teen years unforgettable. Every tiny detail came back to life as I watched the movie, “Flipped” tonight.
There’s a scene in the movie where the girl chasing the boy sits behind him in class and inches closer so she can smell his hair which she says has the scent of fresh watermelon.
Who can’t relate with this? One moment I’m supposed to act like girls don’t exist and the next I’m dancing with one I don’t know very well, but dang, she sure smells good I wish the song would never end. But I can’t enjoy it too much because I wonder if I smell as good to her over the three layers of my dad’s Right Guard?
An older brother would have come in handy around this time. Although I don’t remember telling mine how to act around girls. I probably did, and he did well to ignore my advice.
And that’s the problem. Nobody pulls you aside and tells you what you’re supposed to do. Adults only tell you what NOT to do. My bedroom was in the basement away from my parents and sisters. I lay in my bed many a night sorting out my feelings such as, “Why didn’t I have the guts to ask that girl to dance?” My Panasonic digital clock radio provided the soundtrack. So many plans were made at that time and yet so few were carried out due to my lack of confidence.
Do you remember dancing with someone you cared for and the song immediately moved to the top of your favorites? Without the internet, I relied on the soft hits station to play it and hopefully not talk over the beginning or end of the song. Even 25 years later, if I hear songs from Toto or Chicago it’s as if I’m transported back to a time when I felt cool wearing penny loafers and pastel Izod shirts.
I have a few more years before my children enter the age of awkwardness. I wish I could pull each of them aside and dispense wisdom I’m supposed to possess as their parent. I’m sure my parents tried this, and I brushed them off. I suspect my children will do the same.
And I’m fine with that.