Monday, July 03, 2006

Jessie's Girl

I must have been about 13 when Rick Springfield entered my life. I saw him on a talk show -- it could have been Mike Douglas or Merv Griffin -- where he talked about working to lose his Australian accent and how he was going to join General Hospital and continue singing. I was hooked.

I swooned at Jessie's Girl (remember the video?) and, like a gazillion other adolescent girls, dreamed of being her. I dutifully bought the LPs Working Class Dog and Success Hasn't Spoiled Me Yet (which at the time were going for about $6 at the local record store).

Just as dutifully, I watched General Hospital every day.

Of course, I never was Jessie's Girl, and at some point Dr. Noah Drake dropped off GH, and I hated high school, went crazy at college, worked, moved, went to graduate school, got married, got divorced. And in those 25 years, I must say I didn't give Rick a passing thought aside from the garage sale a few years ago where I sold off all my old albums except for Adam and the Ants.

Somehow, I came to realize that he would be playing at the Marin County Fair. Wow! I thought. How old was he now? Fifty-six, my research discovered. What would he look like? What would he sound like?

I became a woman obsessed.

I read his "diary" on rickspringfield.com and was taken by how down-to-earth he seemed to be. How he loves his dog Gomer (a newer version of the type that appeared on the Working Class Dog album cover), and how he continues to get creeped out by how, when Gomer rides in the car with him, he sits directly behind him and stares at the back of his head.

In short, the desire to be Jessie's Girl returned.

I couldn't convince anyone to accompany me to the MC Fair, so when Friday rolled around, I headed north over the Golden Gate Bridge after work, bought my ticket to the fair, downed a corndog, purchased a beer and edged my way right up to the stage.

And for a couple of hours, I was 13 again.

Him? He looked just as hot as ever. Jessie's girl sure missed out on this one.

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