Friday, August 7, 2009

Generation Ex

The pop culture landmarks we use to denote important times in our life vary greatly. Sometimes we configure memories around meaningful songs, other times it's a book, movie, porn, or anything else of sentimental artistic value. In the summer of 1986, I distinctly remember watching John Hughes's Weird Science or Ferris Bueller's Day Off at least once a day; after 23 years, I can still recite both films verbatim. As a high school kid, it was good to have someone making movies that illustrated our ambivalence about graduating into responsible adults. As an Illinois kid, it was cool that they were set in or around Chicago. Plus, I had a giant crush on Mia Sara. Hughes died this week at 59 after suffering a heart attack on a Manhattan street. Still young himself, it's a terribly inauspicious end to a life that was creatively leveraged on genuine affection for youth. The clothes were hilarious, the hair was huge, and the music introduced Brit pop to the States- but John Hughes probably represented us better than anyone. If anyone needs me, I'll be wearing a bra on my head in his honor. It's ceremonial.

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