Josie Ann asked about the celebrity crush of my youth for this guest post. Given the subject matter of my new book, Bring Me Back, the question is understandable. I love it, actually (so, thank you, Josie Ann). I will take any chance I can to look back on this time in my life.
When I was thirteen, a magical image appeared on my television screen: Duran Duran and the video for “Planet Earth”. Imagine a column of light shining down on me from heaven and the ground shaking a bit. I’m fairly certain that happened, but I do not remember it because I was too wrapped up in what I was hearing and seeing to notice. The music was so different, unlike anything I’d heard before. The singer had an unusual sense of style. The drummer was pretty cute, and…hold the phone…who was that lanky bass player with the mop of burgundy hair?
I didn’t know it at the time, but that was the beginning of my long love for John Taylor. Everything about him made me want to emit high-pitched noises. His impossibly square jaw to start—I can’t believe he hasn’t killed someone with that thing before now. His deep smoldering eyes were filled with mystery. I was clueless about what that penetrating stare into the camera meant, but surely it had to be something good, something to do with S-E-X. Don’t even get me started on his lips, their gentle pout and perfect color. Sigh.
His very sexy young rock star swagger made him all the more lethal a package. Never mind his very talented eyebrows, perfect for wagging in interviews when delivering a clever quip with that accent of his. I never stood a chance.
I plastered my walls with Duran Duran posters and photos of John (I decided early on that he and I should be on a first-name basis), which had been painstakingly removed from the pages of teen magazines. It was very important to minimize the staple holes and I devoted quite a lot of time to it.
None of my Duranie friends was in love with John, which was very important as a Duran Duran fan. Crucial! You could not be friends with someone who liked the same member as you. Jane liked Simon, Sharon liked Roger, and Lara liked Nick. Nobody liked Andy. John was mine. Phew. Safe.
At night, I would shut my eyes and dream up implausible scenarios in which I would meet and fall in love with John. I could imagine him leaning over and whispering, “Good night, Mrs. Taylor,” into my ear before bed. It all seemed inevitable.
Decades later, I’m married to a wonderful man who is not JT, but that is the way things were meant to be. I still have a thing for John, big time. The man has aged extremely well. Unfortunately, millions of other women are still carrying a torch, so my odds have not improved much over the years. I did okay for myself, though—I wrote a novel inspired by the concept of meeting and falling in love with the rock star crush of your youth. And I couldn’t be any happier with the results.
About the Author
Karen Booth is a Midwestern girl transplanted in the South, raised on 80s music, Judy Blume, and the films of John Hughes. An early preoccupation with Rock ‘n’ Roll led her to spend her twenties working her way from intern to executive in the music industry. Much of her writing revolves around the world of backstage passes and band dynamics. When she's not creating fictional musicians, she's listening to everything from Otis Redding to Duran Duran to Tokyo Police Club with her kids, honing her Southern cooking skills (she makes some mean collards), or sweet-talking her astoundingly supportive husband into whipping up a batch of cocktails.
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