Monday, April 30, 2012

Childhood Crushes

When I was a teen, I had posters all over my wall. Posters from different women that I thought were hot. As a teen-aged boy, I was pretty picky about who I put on my wall. I didn't just go for any woman showing cleavage or bending over with a water hose. I only chose celebrities to grace my walls, especially my freshman year in college.

Although I was fond of women like Lynda Carter, Jayne Kennedy and Debbie Morgan, I was very selective of the posters that I bought. I'm unsure if posters are still huge sellers in the local Wal-Marts and K-Marts now, but when I was a teen, so many athletes and celebrities had their own poster. The first poster I remember buying with my own cash was a poster of Lisa Lisa the singer. When her album "Spanish Fly" debuted with the hit song, "Head to Toe," I instantly became a fan of hers. I can honestly say that I was just as big of a fan of her music as I was of her looks. "Lost in Emotion," "Little Jackie Wants to Be A Star," and "All Cried Out" were just a few of her hits from the mid-to-late 80's.

Thanks to Lisa Lisa, I was stuck in a light-skin/long hair phase when it came to women for a while. My dating habits reflected that as well until I got to college and met the most gorgeous, dark-skinned, short-haired beauty named Freda. Another story for another blog post, I guess.

Around the age of 16, I started playing tennis with a kid who was new to the neighborhood. He and I would go to the historical campus of Tougaloo College and play for hours. Because of my interest in the sport, I started watching more tennis on television. That's when I came across an Argentine who got my attention...

Gabriela Sabatini was a very popular tennis player in the late 80's/early 90's. On top of having good looks, she was a really good tennis player as well. While always sporting her Sergio Tacchini attire, she gave Steffi Graf fits on the tennis courts, although Steffi usually wound up winning. The very first time (and only time) I ever joined a fan club was for hers. I sent a letter off to Argentina along with $1.50 to start receiving her newsletter and also get a photo. It must have taken two months for me to receive my membership into her official club. In fact, by the time I received it, I'd forgotten I'd even sent off for it. In all honesty, I think that one letter was all I received and it did not contain a photo. It was a letter signed by her father welcoming me to the club and stating great things were to come.

Well, I'm still waiting. Gabby, you owe me $1.50.

When it was time for me to move on to college, I packed my posters and brought them with me. I'd accumulated quite a few of them and a dormitory wall seemed like the perfect gallery setting. I had Apollonia, Sheila E., Vanity, and Sheila Easton to name a few. If you have no idea who any of those women are, then you were probably born after 1985.

I treasured each and everyone of those posters in my collection, but I would have thrown them all away for one poster of the next lady...

Pamela Suzette Grier. I had no clue Pam even existed until my college roommate and I decided to rent a movie one Friday night. We wanted something we'd never seen before and it had to contain action. We stumbled across "Foxy Brown" and we were hooked like Rush Limbaugh on painkillers. Pam Grier was the absolute most stunning woman to ever grace the movie screen. If anyone wanted to argue with me that the 1974 version of Pam Grier was not the finest woman to ever walk the planet, then I would immediately Amish-rake fight them. Try me. Just try me.

My roommate and I started renting her movies every single weekend. "Coffy," "Sheba, Baby" and more. On a Friday night, close to 10 guys would be in our dorm room watching (what we didn't know at the time) the first black action heroine. Between her and Cynthia Rothrock (blow the dust off of that name), we had action-packed weekends when it came to movies. I was pretty much out of "poster mode" in this point of my life. I had my first long-term girlfriend and she "grandfathered" my old posters in, but wouldn't have been too happy about buying any new ones. Besides, Pam Grier's movies were almost two decades old when I started watching them. I wouldn't have been able to find any posters of her any way. She'd temporarily stopped doing movies during a four year stint on "Miami Vice" and never stumbled upon anything big again until Quentin Tarantino's "Jackie Brown" came out in 1997. And she was still good-looking at age 46 in that movie. But, had I been born a decade earlier, I'm sure I would have had her poster.

So, here I am now, 20+ years later, blogging about these ladies who were my childhood crushes. I decided to Google them to see what they look like now and what they're doing. Pam Grier is still in the acting business and will appear in a movie later this year. Lisa Lisa had a solo comeback about three years ago that I've yet to hear, so I'm guessing that it didn't hit the Billboard Top 100. Gabriela Sabatini is back in Argentina and doing a lot of charity work from what I've read. I also read that she's still single. No sense in pissing off The Mrs., so I'll keep my comments to myself.

Before you could follow a celebrity on a social network, you could put a poster on your wall or join their fan club to connect with them. Unlike today, where celebs saturate us with Instagrams of themselves and re-tweet more than a stuttering baby bird, you only had talk show interviews and magazine articles to learn about them.

Below are all three ladies in the most recent photos that I could find. I think that time has been kind to all three of them. I have no idea where my posters are at this time. They could have met their demise once I moved from college back home. They could be in my parents' storage room in their back yard. I haven't a clue. All I know is this: if I could find them at this very moment.... I'd sell them on eBay faster than a ho outrunning a pimp. What? You thought that nostalgia would make me keep them?

You haven't been reading my blog long enough.  Money is a motivator...

Lisa (Lisa) Velez, 46; Gabriela Sabatini, 41; Pam Grier, 62

Who were your childhood crushes?


  1. Wow...thanks for that flashback, as I was born well before 1985. I had a thing for George Michael, and i think we all know where that would have gone. I did get a great poster when I saw him in 1988 on the Faith tour (sidenote, as I live in the greater Detroit area, I saw the only performance with Aretha. Amazing!). Anyhow, I think the poster was lost whenmy parents divorced.

    And I hope I look half as good as Pam Grier when I'm 62!

    1. Wham! was great, but George Michael's "Faith" album was one of the best of that decade. "One More Try" was so off the chain! I bet seeing him in Detroit with Aretha was very memorable.

  2. Oh God must I admit it!?!?! First Kirk Cameron before he went all massive Christian preacher man. You know back in the Growing Pains days! Then ok here it comes......

    New kids on the block

    I must go crawl in a hole now and hide my shame.

    1. KC preaches now? I had no idea! Every girl in my class had KC posters. I was so jealous of him. LOL! As for the New Kids on the Block, "Please don't go giiiiiirrrrrrrlllllll!" I won't lie. I had that single. :)

  3. Hell yeah I had them and my room, thought not covered with posters, definitely bore the signs and images of my obsessions. I was obsessed with Joey from New Kids, Bon Jovi, LL, Kirk Cameron did it for me, Eddie Furlong (from T2 lol) and a young Leo DiCaprio. haha. I'm sure there are more but I've blocked them. lol. LL still tops my list but the others have faded. ;)

    1. Sounds like you had the same posters most people your age may have had. I bet you had posters like wallpaper in your room.

  4. Your blog has the most boobs I've ever seen short of playboy.

    When I was a kid, and I'm guessing I'm about 10 years younger than you based on your chicklets above, maybe 7, the guys on my wall included Patrick Swayze, Sebastian Bach, Jon Bon Jovi. Jeezus.

    But deep in my heart lie Indiana Jones. Man was he it for me. When I was 7.

    These women are hot - I can see why you'd like them.

    1. LOL! Hey, there's a difference between "cleavage" and "boobs." :)

      Indiana Jones? That's one I haven't heard before. Harrison Ford was doing it big back in the days of the Star Wars Trilogy and the Indy series! I forgot how popular he was back then. Swayze was one that the girls in my school melted over as well.

  5. I think I've been in an Amish rake fight, only now I know the proper name. Lol, loved that. Also, you had me worried for just a second when I read, "tennis"...if Martina Navratilova would've popped up, not sure we could be friends anymore. I only had eyes for the New Kids on the Block. I bought that poster "gum", whatever it is that is supposedly safe (probably toxic) for walls by the pound. The tattered old Tiger Beats were demolished and I had Joey Joe from floor to ceiling. After that phase I was poster-less. Go big or go home.

    One of my childhood bffs still has all her NKOTB posters, she'll knock you out if you even breathe on them. Must say I do love when I go to visit her house, go use the restroom and see she has strategically placed a Joey Joe poster up on the back door; God love her.

    1. Those Amish rake fights are no joke, Cari. I had a season-ending injury from a rake battle last season. :)

      Martina Navratilova wasn't quite my type. I'll leave it at that. LOL!

      It seems as if every lady who has commented has a NKOTB fetish. I never knew they were that big!

  6. Hot damn, Pam Grier...

    Her and Kathy Ireland.

    Oh, and I'm not extremely proud to admit... Helen Hunt. Don't ask...

    1. Helen Hunt was the girl next door, I guess. Kathy Ireland was popular, too!

  7. God day, I had a child hood crush on Janet Jackson and Dominique Dawes. However my crush now is on Mrs. Moore!!!!!!!!!

    1. Dominique Dawes was the gymnast, right? Yeah, I remember her. I never really bought into Janet though. I guess because she looked too much like Michael at one time. LOL!

      Glad to hear that your only crush is on the spouse now, B!


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