Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Poohbutt Crushes Crush

It was only a year into my relationship with my wife, 1996, when I developed my first crush. It wasn't as though I just woke up one day, said, "Hey, I think I'll have a crush today," went to a bar, and latched on to the first female I saw. No, I didn't plan it. I never wanted it to happen. But I couldn't resist.

I was sitting with my boy, Dabalou, sneak-peeking the Jack Nicholson/Stephen Dorff/Michael Caine mediocrity, Blood and Wine, when it happened. There it was--in dewy, morning light and a kinky maid's uniform--"Dat Azz!" Instantly, I gasped, my voice going higher than a heliumized castrato, "Who's dat?!"

Yep. Jennifer Lopez caught my heart. At the time, it was fun to go all Tiger Beat in my mid-twenties. I hadn't had a genuine, bona fide crush since Lisa Lisa. Oh, sure, there have been starlets I'd found attractive over the years--Angela Bassett, Nia Long, anyone in the Prince entourage minus Rosie Gaines--but to have an out-and-out, full-blown pre-pubescent crush again. Now, that was fun. I suffered through Money Train and Anaconda and actually enjoyed Selena. I may have even looked for her in old episodes of In Living Color. It was Tootie all over again. I think my skin even broke out.

But, ultimately, I was no longer 13. I was going on 30. And, as J. hit new lows with Poof Daddy, I had to give up my crush on the woman. However, I did retain the concept of the crush. It was just that these silly, virtual-adolescent crushes matured just as my real ones had: physical perfection diminished in importance and was taken over by intellectual excellence (or in the case of Mrs. Unknown Writer, both). That's right: I started developing The Nerd Crush.

My First Official Nerd Crush: Soledad O'Brien

Look, as a nerd, I know I'm wired wrong. No, it's not like you can hear my lustily slavering, "Look at the CV on that one." I can objectify women with the best of them (after all, there is Serena). It's just that I love me a smart woman. I find nothing more attractive than a woman expounding, pontificating, teaching me something. So, a beautiful woman with a Tweety Bird brain loses her sex appeal while a cute woman with a huge frontal lobe becomes a goddess. A 130+ IQ to me is like some D-cups to a 12-year-old.

So I celebrate the Nerd Crush because it reaffirms my circus geek status. Besides, what harm is there in it? It's not like I'll ever meet any of these people. I mean, playing she-loves-me-she-loves-me-not over a co-worker can only lead to disaster. The closest I've ever come to meeting a "crush" was running into Paul Wolfowitz, whom I'd still like to crush between two Mack trucks. But that all changed yesterday, when Nerd Crush 2004, Liz Marlantes, suddenly entered my life.

For those who don't know (and last night my wife was like, "Who?"), Liz Marlantes was for a time with ABC News. I first saw her on The McLaughlin Group, talking about the presidential campaign. My Nerdiness fell for this bronzed cutie with the boxer's nose instantly as I watched her struggle, trying to marry the worlds of journalism and the shout-box, infotainment, claptrap that McLaughlin. The old man had to actually shush Buchanan a few times just so the woman could speak. Afterwards, I found out that the Christian Science Monitor reporter had majored in American history and literature at Harvard and got a Masters in English Lit. from Oxford (the perfect combination of a young Dolly Parton's breasts and J Lo's ass to a geek like me!).

Oh yeah, I fell hard. But, you know, crushes are ephemeral beasts. I hadn't seen her in a few years, and out of sight, out of mind, and all that.

That is until Ms. Marlantes appeared at my local toddler park with her own little boy in tow. Of course, being a toddler park, Pooh was with me. And she was having none of it. While Daddy was standing at the head of the slide, going through the slow process of recognition (Hey, look, a hot mom ... no, wait ... isn't that? ... Holy shit, that's Liz Marlantes! No way! ... Boy, I used to have a crush on her...), my fiercely determined daughter was steadily toddling towards the top of the slide, with "Who's that heifer?" burning in her little eyes.

I wonder where she's been. I haven't seen her in years.

I didn't even notice the bile rising in my little Poohbutt's gut.

I should say something ... like ... Hey, didn't you used to be Liz Marlantes? ... Yeah, that's almost clever...

My girl reached the top of the slide, dead set against her father introducing himself to this strange woman. None of the other women--none of the nannies, none of the well-kept housewives, none of the power career women--ever even deign to turn up their noses at her miscreant father. What if this cow did?

No. Nothing was going to stand in Poohbutt's way.

I can see she hits the gym, Oblivious Dad thought to himself.

"Goo gaehh issimbakhhh!" Pooh said, sitting at the top of the slide.

(Author's Note: I later discovered that this is BabySpeak for "Enough.")

Then ... relying on the only effective weapon an 18-month-old toddler has in her arsenal, Poohbutt opened her pretty, little mouth and vomited all over herself and the slide.

Daddy here, obviously no Boy Scout, came totally unprepared and had to clean the mess up with his own T-shirt--stealthily never taking it off so folks wouldn't notice.

I then scooped my girl up and scurried out of the park, never once introducing myself to Nerd Crush 2004.

Poohbutt happily sucked her thumb in her car seat all the way home until she fell asleep, a beatific smile resting on that little face all the way home.


Joe Ganci said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joe Ganci said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joe Ganci said...

You're a clever writer. Funny stuff. I just noticed Liz Marlantes on the Chris Matthews show this Sunday morning and wondered who she was. A search found your blog

Jimmyjam said...

Joe, you stole my post. Well said.

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