Jul 25, 2006

Back In the Summer of '89

Or was it the summer of '90? Yes, I believe it was the summer of '90 because I was 15 at the time and had just gotten my driver's permit and thought I was hot "you-know-what"! My Mom has a picture of me sitting in our ultra cool mini van, sporting Tom Cruise "Top Gun" type shades and flashing my brand new permit at the camera. Oh, yes. I was it!

That summer, our family headed to Wisconsin for the first of two family reunions that year. This was a reunion with my dad's side of the family (the reunion I went to a couple of weeks ago was my mom's side of the family). Anyhoo....I was anxious to go, because not only did I get to hang out with my cool cousin "T" (which is what I will refer to her in this post for the sake of anonymity) for two weeks at a lake, but since I was an official and legal driver, that meant that I got to break in the new driver's permit by helping drive out there. Oh, yes...I was pumped.

At this particular time in my life, I happened to be just mildly obsessed with a young and popular boy band. You may have heard of them. They were called "New Kids On The Block". It was just a mild obsession. As luck would have it, my cousin T was also mildly obsessed. I cured her mild obsession, however, and cranked it up to fever pitch during our little visit to Wisconsin.

We spent long and glorious summer days sitting on the dock at the lake fantasizing about our dream-boat famous boys. My man was Jordan, hers was Joe. (If you are unfamiliar with these boys, then google 'em. For real. Go do it now.) We imagined what it would be like to meet them and of course knew without a shadow of a doubt that if these boys were to ever meet us, their days of singing "Please Don't Go Girl" would be over, and they would be singing "I'll be Loving You Forever" and "The Right Stuff" for the remainder of their days to us. I mean, who could resist us?! Really.

T and I decided that this fantasizing stuff was for the birds, and we absolutely must turn fantasy into reality. Besides, we were being totally mis-treated by the adults at the family reunion and we were sick of it. We were ready to go be with the men that we knew were just waiting for us, they just didn't realize it yet.

So, we set the plan in motion. I pulled out my trusted copies of "Teen Beat" and "BOP" magazines to find out where they were on their tour at this time. We found the closest location we could and decided that was to be our destination. Connecticut. That is were we decided we must go. We figured out the mileage from Wisconsin to Connecticut, how long it would take us to get there, and how much gas it would take to get there. We didn't need to worry about gas or mileage on our way back, because....well, we weren't coming back. Nope. We were going to hook up with the boys in CT, and naturally since they would fall in love with us, we would just join them on their tour.

Since I was a "legal" driver at that time, we decided I would be the one to drive, therefore we would use my family's mini-van. "How was the rest your family going to get home", you ask? We don't know. We weren't thinking about minor details such as those.

"But what are we going to do about money?" T and I thought. Well, we'll take our parent's credit cards, and any cash we can find. That ought to cover us until we get to CT and our suga-daddies can start paying for everything we need. Then we'll send their credit cards back to them.

So, we did just that. We secured the cards and some cash, packed our bags, and threw them outside the bedroom windows so that we could avoid making noise in the middle of the night when we left. We were all set.

Then the middle of the night came. T and I were ready to go....we thought. "Are we ready to go?" T asked. "Ummm...not so much, maybe." I say. As with all grand scheme type ideas I had ever come up with when I was a young'un, this one was a lot more fun to plan than to execute. The ramifications of all this plan entailed started to enter into my thought process. Why had the ramifications never entered in before? Well, probably because I never thought we'd actually go through with it. And here we were, the eve of the great "NKOTB Getaway" with the plan all set in motion, and I was starting to panic. The credit cards....the suitcases....we were sure to get caught. How would we replace and/or hide all evidence of this highly thought up scheme before the parentals woke up in the morning?

Well, we didn't. And we got caught. And we got punished. BIG TIME. I got to spend the remaining days of our vacation sitting inside my lake-shore cabing watching everyone water-ski and frolic in the water. The fact that we begged and pleaded withour parents and told them it was just a plan and we didn't intend to go through with it fell like dead weight on their ears. It did no good whatsoever. Suffice it to say, I lost all driving priveledges for the remainder of the summer.

You'd think this whole deal would have soured my love for the group that caused me to go temporarily insane, but oh no. My love withstood the trauma, thanks to die-hard friends back home and constant correspondence between T and I, who had become known to our family members as "Partners in Crime".

"Why", you may ask, "are you telling me this story that has forever altered how I feel about you, Kristen?" Well, because T was visiting us this weekend on her way to another family reunion, and of course, everytime we are in the same room together, the story has to be told again. and again. and again. We now just roll our eyes at eachother and nonchalantly plug our children's ears. "How could we have been so stupid." We always say.


Morning Glory said...

That's just hilarious! Connecticut??????

Dawn said...

We had fun telling T's husband about it - he hadn't caught on to this story before and it was great fun. It wasn't fun at the time! All the questions they were asking the day before started to make sense that morning when we woke up and saw her suitcase outside our bedroom door - dropped from the loft above us in the middle of the night. Thank goodness they overslept or came to their senses! Oh, what great schemers they were.

kpjara said...

I'm sure your hubby is thrilled the trip didn't 'pan' out, though I know Jordan is heartbroken even today!

That's one of those stories that can only be appreciated after the fact! How funny...good plans though, well thought out!

Don't try to do anything THIS time, k? You know the kids would so TELL on you!

Nikkie said...

Oh my, I remember the big NKOTB craze! That sure was a funny story! I'm glad for your mom and hubby that you guys never made it to Connecticut!!

brooke said...

I loved Donny. donny + brooke = love 4ever.

Karen said...

I still think this is THE best story of all time. It is just classic on so many levels. I love it. I really, really love this story. I'm also sort of envious that you didn't cook up this idea with moi.

I can't imagine how your parents all must have tried to balance laughing enormous gaffaws in your faces at the plot and the horrible fear of what would have/could have happened if you'd carried it out.

Man. I love that story. I can't wait to tell Feisty and CB when they are big girls.

Dawn said...

I hate to say it, but the laughter didn't come till much later. I didn't see anything funny about it at the time. I was just such a party pooper! Of course, now it seems so ingenious, though criminal!

Praying for your Prodigal said...

OMG! Kristen! You were left "Hangin'Tough!" There you were, two "Cover Girl(s), thinking "Time was on (y)our side", planning your trip, "Step by Step", "Thinkin' they'd be loving you forever!"

"Are You Down" just rememberin? I'm sure you were planning the big welcome, "Stay with me Baby"--and WOW....."Didn't (You) Blow (their) minds! I can't imagine what it felt like to be a parent after THAT discovery! Did they chime in chorus, "Don't go girl?" ;)

As you were watching the skiing and water fun from the distance...were you thinking "Let's Try It Again?" Hoping to get to CT so they could welcome you by saying, "You've Got IT--the right stuff?"

Too bad you sat in that bedroom watching from afar thinking----"I can't believe it's over!" "I'm just never gonna fall in love again!"

Phew--I could go on like this--but I won't. "Call it what you want" (I couldn't resist) but I have to tell you-my own daughter was NKOTB crazy too! I listened to more than a few NKOTB CD's in my day! I'll have her read your post when she comes back to the cabin in a bit! I can't wait to see her expression--another fan...all grown up!

"Keep on smilin" Kristen! Love the laughs today!!!!!!


Grammy said...

Well, I'm just glad that my child wasn't the only one to plan a big escape by dropping the neccessary equipment out the window. Of course, HE was doing it because he was already in trouble and thought he could escape the penalty by beating a hasty retreat. But then, he was only 8.

I remember when my girls decided NKOTB were no longer cool and burned their pictures in the backyard fireplace - in an effort to prove that they (on the other hand) WERE very Cool!

Trisha said...

NKOTB Oh, how I remember those days of infatuation. The posters, the t-shirts, the cassette tapes. I thought my love for them would never die!

Dawn said...

Diane - you're amazing! I heard those songs every day, day in and day out, but couldn't possibly come up with that many titles. I really liked their sound. There were 10,000 holes in the walls of her room from all the teeny tiny pictures she hung up from those teen mags.

Grammy - I have a picture of her at age 4 with her bag packed and on her way out of the yard to run away from it all. Ironic that she now lives 3 doors away from where she started!

One of the funniest things about this whole deal, even at the time, is that she was totally directionally challenged and couldn't find her way around our small home town at the time. Scary!!

Sunny said...

LOL! That story is priceless!