Random Flashback: A Trip Through Billy Ocean’s Greatest Hits (all three of them)

In my memory Rick Marciniak serenades me with “Get Out of My Dreams, Get into My Car” (GOOMDGIMYC) after math class in 8th grade.

He sings while walking beside me all the way from the math room to my locker. In the memory I’m only mildly embarrassed, which is a delightful surprise. I spent most of 8th grade wanting to die of embarrassment over everything, not the least of which was how Justin Dupont and Sean whose last name I could never spell would jump on my back in the halls between classes and try to ride me? Force me to give them a piggyback? Something humiliating.

But this isn’t about being a freakishly tall fat bullied kid.

Nope this is about the failures of memory, how the Internet ruins that, and the one time Rick Marciniak sang to me in the hallways of Roosevelt Junior High and I didn’t die of embarrassment.

Like I said in my memory it’s GOOMDGIMYC only the math doesn’t line up. Because that song was released in Janaury of 1988 when I was in 10th grade where I would have been in senior high. I know this because I googled it and it ruined my memory.

So then I pondered it for a bit as one does when one has other things to do and no desire to do them. I was positive he sang a Billy Ocean song to me and I knew it was “Caribbean Queen” because that make no sense. In my head I willed myself back to 8th grade, a place I don’t go too often.

There I am lumbering through the halls, shoulders hunched to disguise being 6’2″ and taller than everyone else in the building, math notebook clutched to my chest, and there is dark-haired, Coke-bottle glasses, much-shorter-than-me Rick singing. He’s singing and singing and I’m smiling because it doesn’t feel like he’s making fun of me. Maybe he actually wants to be my loverboy?

He’s singing “Loverboy” and I’m laughing with him and it makes me feel good which did not happen a lot in 1985.

Yes, it’s “Loverboy.” And the math adds up because I would have been in 8th grade when the song was popular in 1985.

That’s probably the most romantic thing that ever happened to me ever. Ever. And I’m still not entirely sure he wasn’t making fun of me.

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