Someone can be a part of your life, even though you’ve never actually met them. In these days of mass media and instant celebrity, a lot of us know more about the Kardashians than our own family, which is a tragedy, and something that I want to blog about. But that is not the point today.
Today, I am sad. A lovely little piece of my history came back to my attention last week, and I want to mourn, not only the loss of a pop idol, but the passing of my youth. Davy Jones, only 66 years old, died last week. I say “only 66,” although there was a time when Davy and I both thought that that was an incredible age, practically ancient, and certainly no longer entitled to the dreams and plans of youth. Now, getting well into my second half-century, I can see that 66 years is just a blink of God’s eye.
Davy was my first true love, and I adored him with every fiber of my elementary-school being. He was cute, he was talented, he was funny – and he was short! (I’ve always been vertically challenged.) He was the perfect fantasy, always cheerful, always understanding, always beautiful.
Okay, I don’t know. Maybe he wasn’t. Maybe he drank, had a bad temper, kicked small kittens for fun. But I never heard anything bad about him, and God knows, nowadays everyone will tell every filthy, ugly secret they have for a shot on Oprah. (I’m looking at you, McKenzie Phillips.) Davy was, and remained, a teenage girl’s perfect beau.
I took child and adolescent psychology. I can give you chapter and verse about why slightly-built, mild-mannered singers who do songs about daydreams and true love become heart-throbs for very young women who are still afraid of anything “other” – meaning masculine, aggressive, realistic. But understanding why I loved Davy, why my cousin loved Andy Gibb, why my daughter loved Justin – heck, why Marie Antoinette loved Mozart – does not diminish the feeling at all.
Davy, you were a lovely, talented boy who became a charming, talented man. While it hurt to see the grey hairs and the lines on your face, I’m glad we had you with us for as long as we did.
You were always too busy singin’ to put anybody down.