23 March 2009

Closing the Generation Gap

So, I don't know what y'all did on Friday night, but I devoted myself to the noble pursuit of helping my 13-year-old cousin procure a copy of the Twilight 2-disc limited edition DVD. This is, I will remind you readers, the second Friday night of my life I have devoted to Katlyn and her Twilight obsession. And I don't really mind. Because I love her even more than I dislike Twilight.

I'm not going to bore you with the details of our odyssey, but I can tell you that it wasn't the most fun pursuit of my life, and it caused us to spend a lot of time in the car, driving around together. Two things saved the night from utter ruin.

The first thing was the conversation. She badly wants to be able to talk to me about the guys (celebrities) she finds "hot". But she's thirteen, and so she gets crushed out on really young, really pretty, kinda girly guys. I'm not thirteen, and even when I was, I don't think that was my thing. So I can't really "relate". This has been going on for a couple of years now. I think that it disappoints her. But during our epic car ride, she happened to ask me if I ever watch That 70s Show. When I told her that I was pretty well acquainted with show, she said, "there is a really hot guy on that show." I groaned inwardly, because I was going to have to tell her that I wasn't a big Ashton fan either. But then she said something unexpected, "I think that Hyde guy is really cute. I mean, he does a lot of drugs and that is gross, but he's cute anyway." Whoo-hoo! Something that we could finally bond over. Of course, Hyde is the hottest character on that show. There was, I'm sort of embarrassed to say, actual high-fiving in the car over the relief of us actually finding someone we could agree on. We also talked about strip clubs a little (she doesn't approve of them) and how it is hard for her to find Robert Pattison attractive now that she knows he played a gay man in a film (you couldn't pay her enough to do that. It must mean that he is actually kind of gay). It's interesting to talk to someone who is thirteen. I recommend it.

The second thing that saved our night was that, at some point, I stuck the CD "Feed the Animals" by Girl Talk in the stereo. Girl Talk is a DJ who creates music (in this case one big, long album-length song) almost purely out of sampling. Normally, this is not my kind of thing. At all. But he uses a lot of 80s stuff, and some fun rock stuff, and I can recognize almost half of what is on there. And it seems pretty witty--both what he chooses and how he puts it together. But what is brilliant is that this is the PERFECT thing for a thirty-something to listen to with a young teen. Because SHE knew everything I didn't, and vise versa. And we both hear stuff in it that we like, and have an equal investment in the music. We listened to the whole album, twice. (I also got to look cool, since I was letting her listen to something that was really pretty objectionable.) I highly recommend this if you have to spend time with a teenager in the near future. You'll both enjoy it.

(By the way, we did finally get a copy of the DVD. She seemed quite pleased with it. It makes me shudder to even imagine how many times she's actually going to watch it--)


qwanty said...

You know, I have a twelve-year-old charge. She doesn't tell me anything, particularly about boys. Isn't that a hoot? Not wanting to talk to ME about BOYS? The poor girl. She has NO IDEA what a boy crazy girl I have been all my life.

Does the fact that I find Robert Pattison even more attractive knowing he played a gay man mean that I'm all grown up now?

KRD said...

No one wants to talk to their mom about boys. That's what they have single aunties for.

Um. Isn't that what made your first real boyfriend more attractive?

Marcus said...

He he hee he! You two with your banter.

You know what music spans generations? Folk. Stick in PP&M or the Kingston Trio, and watch the gap melt away.

Cupcakes do it too. When you're with a tweener, stop at 7-11 and head for the Hostess rack. Those things are chemistry in a plastic mold.

KRD said...

Marcus! Shhh. That folk thing is a shameful Dorsey family secret.

Did you see Ella on Pal's lap on Sunday night watching PP&M sing "Puff"? It was like watching my childhood at a distance.

Why, by the way, is anyone letting their preteen in a car with you?

Marcus said...

I didn't go there, but you did? Role reversal, anyone?