Tag Archives: Michael Jackson

What If…?

Michael Jackson Image credit: thatgrapejuice.net

Michael Jackson
Image credit: thatgrapejuice.net

Do you ever imagine what your life would be like if you had taken a different path?

For example, suppose you had married or settled down with your very first boyfriend or the person who was your very first crush?

Suppose you had done that before letting that first blush pass or allowing the scales to fall from your eyes? Or before you managed to take off those rose-tinted glasses?

But maybe I shouldn’t be so cynical, because I might have actually enjoyed migrating to New Zealand with Phillip K after we got married, and would now be regaling our children with stories about growing up in the tropics.

I know there are a number of people who actually married their high school sweethearts and probably an equal number of them are still together.

But how many of us know for a fact that we dodged a bullet?

I’m not planning on giving away too much information here, but like other young ladies I know, I’ve had my share of crushes. I can’t say that any of them were people on TV, because I’m a practical girl at heart – I want to know that I actually have a chance in hell of hooking up with the man of my dreams.

Not all of us can be as “lucky” as Katie Holmes.

So no. There were no posters of any actors or singers hanging on the walls of the bedroom I shared with my sister. Sure Michael was a looker in his early days, but I can’t say that I ever wanted to marry him.

I know though, that there are some of us who see where our first crushes (or boyfriends) ended up and are glad that first love means there’s a second or even a third to follow.

How many of us know now what we didn’t know then, which is that he really wasn’t marriage material – evidenced by the fact that he is no longer married to the person he decided to marry?

How many of us are relieved that we didn’t have to understand that even though he said he wanted to be married, it didn’t mean that he wouldn’t continue to look for suitable prospects – even after he was married?

How many of us are thankful that we didn’t have to find out that he wasn’t the one for us when he decided that we weren’t the one for him after all – several thousand dollars and a couple hundred wedding favours later?

How many of us are happy that we didn’t have to discover that our significant other was also very significant to others – which could have meant significant weight loss for us?

How many of us are delighted to have avoided owning the title “my baby’s mother” because he was perfectly happy being nothing more than your baby’s daddy – in addition to someone else’s?

Talk about a close call.

What about you? Do you consider your first love the one who got away, or the one you got away from?

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Party Over Here!

In the Caribbean, we love to ‘fete’ – more in some islands than in others. Trinidad is known as the party capital. They say that the people there can turn anything into a party. In other islands, like my own, we wait for Carnival, where lately, the all-inclusive fetes have been reigning supreme. That means an entrance fee that includes music, drinks and sometimes food, in a secure, theme-filled location.

I remember that when I was a teenager, ‘fetes’ were actually house parties. An invitation to one of these was like gold. In my house, I had better be able to produce the actual invite – word of mouth was not going to cut it. In other households, the younger sister was fortunate if she had an older brother with whom she could tag along. But in any household, that homework and those chores had better be done.

It meant walking on eggshells all day Saturday, because one slip up could cause your mother to call the whole thing off. You call your girlfriends to find out what they’re wearing, and wash your own hair. A nail job meant doing it yourself, maybe with a sparkly polish that might have been diluted with some nail polish remover to make it stretch, but it also made it a little dull.

Your father drops you to the party – way too early, but how are you going to tell your mother that the party doesn’t really start ‘til eleven o’clock. When you get there at nine, she’ll just say that you have four hours to enjoy yourself. Parents just didn’t understand.

You walk up to the house and that dance floor is dark. All the better not to be seen you think, but you wait outside for your friends, because back then, we didn’t have cell phones to call our BFF’s to ask them what was taking them so long. When they do arrive, we girls check out the other girls, and maybe watch as your crush walks on by.

If you’re unattached, you have to endure being asked by guy after guy about whether you would like to dance. Of course, you assess his clothes, hair and breath. If you’re lucky, the boy you’ve been watching all night does ask you to dance, and your girlfriends are abandoned while you proceed to rent-a-tile all night. And you fantasize to the sounds of Michael Jackson, the Commodores and Bob Marley.

You start to check your watch because Daddy said he would be waiting for you outside at one, but you didn’t really want to go. However, with your eyes firmly fixed on that next party, you do what you must.

On Monday, at school, the talk is all about the party. Who was there, who wasn’t. A lot of times that was me. Who danced with whom, and who’s going together now, because you couldn’t really be on the dance floor together for that long and not come back in a committed relationship.

Good times.