Now, I am having a major crisis. I don't know what is real and what I made up!
When I first realized that I had a problem, I was about 17 years old. I was with my BFF one night in her basement drinking Zimas & Jolly Ranchers and chatting about our favorite movies. (SPOILER ALERT: If you haven't seen Dirty Dancing, wait...never mind. If you haven't seen it, then you deserve to have it spoiled!)
BFF: Dirty Dancing has to be like the best movie EVERRR! I mean, I don't usually go crazy for Swazy, but in that movie, he is FIIIINE.
ME: Totally! I love the dancing scenes and the music. I just never really understood why Penny had to quit because of hypothermia.
BFF: Yeah. I know, right? Wait...what? Hypothermia? When?
ME: Oh you know! That part where she got locked in a freezer.
BFF: WHAT THE FUCK?
ME: Yeah. She got locked in a freezer. They found her. She was shaking. Johnny carried her somewhere. I totally remember it.
BFF: Umm...how do I break this to you? Hmmm.
ME: Break what to me?
BFF: Penny didn't get locked in a freezer; she had an abortion!
ME: WHAT?!?! NO WAY!
BFF: YES WAY!
ME: Then why the fuck did my parents let me watch it when I was like 8 years old.
BFF: I have no idea. But how is it possible that you are the valedictorian of our high school and haven't figured this out since.
ME: *silence* Uh.Yeah. Want me to go in the garage and get more Zima?
More recently, I rewatched the movie I watched every single day for 3 weeks in a row during the summer of 1993: A League Of Their Own. I used to watch that with milk & cookies on a picnic blanket in the middle of my living room floor. It was my crack, and Penny Marshall was my dealer. I needed a hit everyday. And once, when my parents were out of town, I watched it TWICE in one day. I even got a stopwatch out so I could time Jimmy Dugan peeing out of sheer 11 year curiosity. Approx 49 seconds, in case you were wondering.
As it turns out, I just found out last month that I didn't actually understand 1/3 of the dialogue. Like when Tom Hanks signed that little kid's baseball with "AVOID THE CLAP. -Jimmy Dugan," I just thought he was tired of all the applause. Or when Jon Lovitz told the girls in the locker room that he had to go home to "Give the wife a little PICKLE TICKLE," I just assumed it was like a stuffed toy shaped like a pickle. Perhaps it laughed when you squeezed it- like 'Tickle Me Elmo?'
Even more shocking was when I was watching "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" a couple weeks ago. After Cousin Eddie says that he and Catherine needed a little alone time, I heard Cousin Eddie whisper to Catherine "don't forget the rubber sheets and the gerbils." WHAT?! I actually blocked that one from my memory because when I heard that this year...I was flabbergasted. A Richard Gere joke? But before the Richard Gere incident?? My head might explode.
It is like the veil of innocence and pre-adolescent coping mechanisms is being removed and now I just get to discover that I actually know very little about all my childhood favorite movies...and what I do know is very likely something I made up in my own head.
I am so confused. Should I watch the movies all over again today and uncover my brain's conspiracies to cover up the truth? Or resign myself to never watch them again, and hold on to those last shreds of childhood ignorance?