Imaginary Loves

This post is in response to the daily prompt. Before you read, please be aware that the following contains pop culture references from the late 80’s and early 90’s. If you don’t remember those decades, you probably won’t enjoy it. 

My parents claim that my first love was the older brother on E.T. Michael I think his name was. Evidently, I loved him so much that he came everywhere with me. In imaginary form, of course. My parents’ favorite story about Michael is a time when we were getting dinner with some family friends. I told one of the guys that they couldn’t sit in a particular chair because that’s where Michael was sitting. The guy, obligingly, took the chair opposite. After a few minutes, the chair in which Michael was seated (still seen as uninhabited by any sane person) slid backwards a couple of feet. My eyes apparently bugged out of my head. It was, of course, the result of the family friend’s foot pushing on the chair bottom. The adults had a great laugh over it. I’m sure I was freaking out about that for the rest of the day. I don’t actually remember Michael, let alone the above incident, but my parents have told this story so many times it almost feels like I can remember it.

I would consider my actual first crush to be on Tom Wopat. You know, Luke Duke from the Dukes of Hazzard. Well, maybe you don’t know. I guess it depends on how old you are. (Side note: I can’t believe I’m getting old enough that my pop culture references are now sailing miles over the heads of teenagers.) I met him once and got his autograph. He was singing at a county fair or something (he tried for a singing career there for a while). I was too shy to talk to him, though, and hid behind my dad. Tom (can I call him Tom?) grinned and touched my cheek and said, “She’s so cute.” Highlight of my life, right there. (Not really, but it was at the time.) I’ve still go the autograph (somewhere) and a plastic Dukes of Hazzard mug that I keep all my writing utensils in (for those of you young’uns, that means pens and pencils; back in the day, we held things in our hands and scribbled on paper and called that writing).

Following that was a whole slew of celebrity crushes, from Jonathan Taylor Thomas to Justin Timberlake. I even had a crush on the purple Ninja Turtle for a bit (no judgement, please!).

My imaginary worlds have always been a bit more lively than the real world. I would make up stories in my head, fantasizing about how I met these people, how we fell in love and lived happily ever after. Sometimes how they broke my heart (or I broke theirs, such is my vanity). I would work through the details until they were perfect. No plot holes here!

These early celebrity fantasy stories eventually gave way to completely imaginary characters spawned from my very own head meat. I would actually consider these early celebrity fantasies as being the starting point of my entire (fingers crossed) writing career.

Or maybe I was just a creepy kid. Either way, I ended up with one hell of an imagination.

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