Monday, July 2, 2012

Remember the past....Fame

There are just certain movies that will never leave you. They make permanent imprints somewhere in your subconscious. Years, perhaps decades, go by and you think you forget about them but deep down the feelings it evoked, the emotions it would change, and the freedom it allowed you to have for a few short hours resonate somewhere off in the distance. And then one thing can happen like a hearing a tune, or a specific line or even something as little as one word, and the memories come flooding back. WOOSH! Then you start recalling specifics, smiles emerge. More scenes pop in and you rush to your laptop, like I am doing right now, to go to YouTube and look up those scenes to see if you remember them correctly.

Minutes pass quickly as you play scene after scene. Now maybe 30-45 minutes pass but you don't notice because you have been transported back to when you were 12 years-old and all the dreams you had then have fill current space and time. It's hard not to smile, even giggle, because you might remember what you used to wear because the film inspired you. Perhaps the film lent you a catch phrase you'd say when you wanted to make someone pay attention. Maybe the memory comes back of you sitting in front of the mirror alone in your room, singing along with the soundtrack trying to picture yourself as one of the characters because you thought they were more interesting than you.

Thousands of memories, too many to describe, but I know each and every one of you have dozens of films floating around in your brain right now, and maybe not at this instant, but soon, a spark will occur and you will be transported back to the past.

Tonight, I am sitting on the chaise lounge, in the dark, with headphones on and I am listening to a few songs from a movie that just popped in head. I was actually trying to sleep, something that is never easy for me to do because my mind wonders, usually about films. Then it happened. The phrase, "on my own" tripped across the random thoughts and stopped there. Three words just stood there, almost floating above my head, eyes shut, tossing and turning. Then it began...the memories. I hear a single piano starting to play. I tossed the sheets back, grabbed my laptop, clicked on the YouTube icon and I found it:

Yeah, yeah this was one of the "mirror songs" for me; and I have a feeling for a few of you out there as well. Go ahead, admit it. I won't tell anyone.

Okay, now that we're all in a sullen mood let's bring on the smiles and perhaps a little toe-tapping.

Anyway, after I finished "Out Here On My Own" from the original Fame, I went searching for other songs and scenes from this film. And I came upon this one....

"Shady Sadie, southern lady...." Who's groovin' now? I am personally sitting here slightly shifting my shoulders, trying hard to type but still keep up with the beat of the song. It ain't easy.... ha-ha...Love the lunch ladies....Okay, sorry I have to let the song finish before I continue....whew. That was fun.

Fame was one of my childhood go-to soundtracks and VHS tapes. I felt more mature when I watched the film. Heck, I wasn't even in high school when it came out. I was only 10 years old but saw it a few years later once it was released on video.

There was just something about the aura of a school of the arts, the struggle of artists, who were just kids, trying to learn their craft. Some realizing they didn't have enough talent, while others had the talent but trusted the wrong people. Fame took on many controversial topics for 1980. Homosexuality, suicide, pornography, abortion, poverty, etc…Also, it showed just how hard it was to find a career in the arts. Hollywood loves a happy ending, especially when it comes to films about certain talents like singing and dancing, but Fame showed a grittier side, probably a more realistic side than most films. (Okay, maybe not everyone dances on top of cars when a song starts playing out of taxi but, hey, it was still just a movie. There's got to some level of fantasy, right?)

I didn't attend a school of the arts, although my school had a fantastic drama department. (That's another story - one I'll tell you about someday when I actually acted in a few plays.) And I didn't have a talent like dancing, singing or acting even though I just mentioned I attempted to perform on stage. Fame taught me about conviction the students had, the level of self-esteem and belief in their abilities - that they could do something with their lives. Sure, they all struggled from self-doubt but they kept on trying and that inspired me, and still does today.

I hope you enjoyed this little trip down memory lane. Now I am off to go find a photos of me in legwarmers…

P.S. Yes, I watched the television show.

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