ok, so phil menzies is daft

sorry, gang. the world cup is keeping me from getting much writing done here. on the plus side, as i was thinking about soccer related movies it knocked loose a real gem from the dear, dim past.

back in junior high, i used to go to my grandmother's house after school and wait there for my folks to come pick me up when they got off work. the afternoon ritual consisted of a walk to head's grocery on main street for a dr. pepper and some hot tamales and then a healthy dose of battle of the planets and chicago cubs baseball courtesy of WGN. one fateful afternoon, a rainout sent me in search of alternatives and i stumbled across a film that remains a favorite to this day - bill forsyth's gregory's girl (1981).

oh, dorothy. that hair. those shorts. that accent. i was in love. i'd never met a girl from cumbernauld before, so exotic.

i was so taken with this movie. it was carefully observed, awkward, understated and real. john hughes' run of teen-oriented films that came just a few years later just did not resonate with me at all. they felt like they were trying to sell me something. gregory's girl felt like it was trying to tell me something, something important in that way that things are important only when you are a teenager. it was clumsy sometimes, urgent at others, but always smart, sweet and funny.

and on top of everything else, it was also the first time a friend and i bonded over a film that we discovered of our own accord. now, my parents showed me films all the time. my mom loves the andy hardy series, seen 'em all. i remember watching the creature from the black lagoon (1954) for the first time on television on a saturday afternoon with my dad. my grandma took me to the theater constantly when i was little. i remember pete's dragon (1977) being the first time i ever saw a line all the way through the theater parking lot. i remember the little league team all going to see the empire strikes back (1980) together. i remember a lot of formative film experiences but never before had i made the discovery first. until this point, things had always been shown to me. this was different, this was mine. so, i went to school the next day and at recess i was trying to describe it to everyone. i wasn't expecting much of a response. it was a well established fact that i liked the "weird" things. to my surprise, not only had gordon stumbled across it as well but he had really liked it. i would have always thought it was just not his cup of tea. there were hidden depths there that i had never suspected before. to this day, i am glad i mentioned it that day on the playground. thanks, bill forsyth, for teaching me to not underestimate my friends. and also for teaching me that sometimes a susan is even better than a dorothy. check it out, if you find time between matches this month. there are valuable lessons in it for all of us.

now then - slovenia!!

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