The Cheesier the Pop Song, The Better


And they don’t come much cheesier than Starship and ‘Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now.’ Come on, this is from a film called ‘Mannequin’, the plot of which is basically a mannequin coming to life and a man falling in love with her. Hell, Kim Fucking Cattrall is the mannequin. It defines ‘cheese’. But something in the melody and the trite lyrics spoke to a boy not-so-bravely embarking on his adolescence.


Looking in your eyes, I see a paradise
This world that I found is too good to be true
Standing here beside you, want so much to give you
This love in my heart that I’m feeling for you…


The song peaked at this time of the year (actually hitting #1), and spring is something which makes pop songs more potent. (Maybe not as much as summer, but powerful in other ways – in the release and relief from winter, in the thawing and the awakening of the earth again, in that scent of life being reborn, carried on a warm wind.) Before girls (or boys), I found comfort in the company of friends, hanging out on a weekend in April, itching for the school year to enter its final throes, and seeking out whatever excitement that an eleven-year-old can possibly hope to find. Our concerns were still confined to baseball card trades, sleepovers, and who got to sit where at the movies. Movies like ‘Mannequin’ – which we saw at the Cinema 4 in the Amsterdam Mall – which is where I saw most of the movies of my childhood. (Yes, ‘Cinema 4′ meant there was a whopping total of four theaters.)


We didn’t know or care that there was more out there. Nor did we care about the impossibility of a mannequin coming to life or even the whole notion of falling in love.  There would be time enough for that, and something in me pushed that time far off into the future – I somehow knew it would not be an easy thing for me. But that night, on the sparkling pavement of the upper floor of the mall parking lot, we weren’t looking for love. We were just looking to be kids. The weekend was ahead of us, and we were invincible. Nothing was going to stop us now. Cue the cheesy guitar solo – extra cheese please.


And we can build this dream together
Standing strong forever
Nothing’s gonna stop us now…



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