I realize like Lauren, some of you may be super young and not remember things such as phones with cords, Atari, MTV when they actually played music or Erols Video. All of you are missing out.
Erols was a gateway to awesome. Friday night trips to Erols to pick up a video (or two, if you were lucky) and if you BEGGED your mom, a bag of candy was the best thing in the whole wide world. So many choices at your fingertips. Many hours of my childhood were spent huddled around our tv and awesome, new fangled VCR with a good friend watching such classics as Goonies, Dirty Dancing, Ghostbusters, April Fool’s Day, Friday the 13th and so many more classics over and over again. . I’m sure my dad would say that knowing all of the words to Breakfast Club (Bender…swoon) or Sixteen Candles or Say Anything (tell me the name of one person who didn’t want Lloyd Dobbler and I’ll show you a liar) was super useless ( I disagree, DAD!). Almost every single one of these movies changed my life It’s kind of like that moment when I was 14 and I hear Nirvana for the first time and the world stopped for me.
When I was in elementary school (I promise this will come full circle in a minute), I met someone who would become my forever friend. Considering I still keep in touch via the wonders of Facebook with my daycare teachers of yore, this may not surprise you. Elizabeth is one of those people that make the world better. I can assure you, we were hellions while in after school care. Poopy Alexis – sorry….I hope we didn’t scar you for life. But Elizabeth is this kind of person: fun, smart, kind, thoughtful, loving, and has the memory of steel. She remembers things from the way back machine and I cannot even remember what I wore yesterday. There are so many things I envy about her. And, she is thoughtful beyond all imagination. She remembers your birthday, your entire family’s birthdays, anniversaries and pretty much anything else that has happened in your life. Each of us gets a card on one of these such occasions. I still have my dad’s Father’s Day card sitting next to me as I type this. It is August. *SORRY DAD* At least I got one. He’ll get it one day. It’s the thought that counts, I guess. He knows I love him. I learned from him – I will always love you even if I don’t say it. If it changes, you’ll know.
I digress. But there is one movie. One movie that I will always love and being an adult will NOT ruin it for me when I watch it again (please don’t watch The Last Unicorn as an adult. I will not be the same for you. Let it live in your mind.) Elizabeth and I spent MANY, MANY hours of our youth watching Labyrinth.
I bet most of you haven’t even heard of it and frankly, I say, you are missing out. This is one of my favorite movies of all time. We could probably perform the entire thing for you. I could sing every song. Labyrinth was playing the other night at one of Baltimore’s oldest and coolest theaters and guess who was there in the audience? You guessed it. Us. It was an awesome experience. Parents were there with their kids and NOTHING made me happier to know that it is being passed down. I own it (obvi) and my son has seen it several times. Albeit, the movie is a little dark (a way older man obsessed with a young girl and kidnapping her baby brother? HUH?) but boy is it clever. We lamented on how the puppeteers were s talented (check out Black Crystal or any muppet movie in addition) and lent so much more to the movie than CGI could ever do. Loving Jim Henson and his legacy also helps you love this movie even more. And David Bowie? Such a BAMF. No one else could pull off that hair, that cod piece or an owl outfit covered in glitter. A baby Jennifer Connelly? The BEST. We knew she’d be a star. We sang the songs. We recited the lines.
I felt like a kid again. I was terrific to share that with Elizabeth and L, our other friend. It is amazing how something you experienced 30 years ago could feel the exact same today. And to share it with some very special people in my life? Cannot even put words around that. So, thanks Erols. for continuing to enrich my life and experiences decades after you went out of business.
On another note – I bring to you a brief story of how I ruined a special moment for a little boy and his dad. Ugh. I am ridiculous sometimes. A ginormous mega-movie theater was just built near our house and the husband and I decided to check it out. We had to ride the elevator from the depths of the parking garage underneath this behemoth and as we were standing there FOREVER, a dad and his young son stood behind us to make their trek to the theater. Seeing as how I can never keep to myself and mind my own business, I turned around and said, “Hi! Have you ever been here before? What movie are you going to see?” Just as the dad starting throwing evil looks my way and in that moment I couldn’t shut up or stop talking about the effing movie theater. He looked at me and was like, ‘Well, it was a surprise for him. He has never been to one before.” Well, open mouth. Insert foot. Ugh. WHY. WHY. WHY do I do things like this?!!?!?!?! Husband patted me on the back and congratulated me on my good job of being a blabber mouth.