Thursday, June 6, 2013

TBT: My Traumatic "Titanic" Story

Before you read on, hit play to set the ambiance for this tale.

The year was 1997; I was a second grader sitting in the movie theater with my mom awaiting the start Home Alone 3 (I'm pretty sure that's the movie we were seeing.. but don't quote me on that). The previews began rolling and a trailer that would haunt my dreams for days to come appeared on the screen: a beautiful voyage across the Atlantic in a spectacular ship that would inevitably hit an ice burg, sink and kill thousands of people. 

"What a horrible movie!" I thought to myself. "Why do people like seeing sad and scary movies like that?"

I'm sure you all know what the movie was..

"Nobody will see that movie. It's too scary." -Little Annie Wernsman
Months went by and all people could talk about was how amazing this movie was and how it was the best love story they had ever seen (even my fellow 2nd graders were saying it!). Still, I wanted nothing to do with that scary movie.. that is, until my monthly Nickelodeon magazine arrived.. 

Whoa.. who is THAT?!
"Leonardo DiCaprio, huh?" I thought to myself as I thumbed through the issue. 

Nickelodeon mag introduced me to Leo.. and I never looked back. 

Be still my little 7-year-old heart.
Oh my gosh. I HAD to see this movie!! Unfortunately, my parents didn't agree (some dumb reason about nudity, sex, dead bodies floating in the water, I'm not 13, blah, blah.. psh, whatever). 

My mom and Grandma Velora went to see it and I ambushed my poor grandmother when they got back about how it was, the details, how was Leo, were they able to avoid the ice burg, etc., but hearing others accounts of the movie just wasn't the same.. I went to school the next day to discover that my friend Megan had even gotten to see it over the weekend (she also got to see Spice World and the re-release of Grease in theaters, but I'll save those stories for another day)! Life was so unfair!

I became obsessed. My mom surprised me with the soundtrack (on cassette) so I'd take my walkman with me to school so my friends and I could act out our own version of Titanic. I had a whole library of Titanic books, an inflatable Titanic bath toy, Leo's biography.. but it just wasn't the same (I even went as far as trying to make my own Titanic movie.. growing up, I LOVED writing/directing/filming my own movies).

Then my 8th birthday rolled around. 

My parents hosted a party at our house for my girlfriends and me and we all had a blast! We played games, ate cake, ran around--a perfect day!

And then it was time to open gifts. 

I received all kinds of fun craft sets, Barbies, stationary, etc., but the gift that had me the most excited was from my parents. It was a movie (VHS)--I could just tell! So I started to unwrap it and... 


It was Titanic!! They bought me Titanic!! I couldn't believe it!! My parents really did care about my happiness!!

Something was different though.. and upon more thorough examination, I realized what it was..

It was the Titanic from 1953 starring Clifton Webb and Barbara Stanwyck. Well played mom and dad, well played.

To wrap this story up, I eventually got to see Titanic (the real one with Leo and Kate) when I was 8 or 9; it was released onto VHS and my mom bought it. We watched it as a family (including my 4-year-old brother, which I didn't find fair in the least bit) and my mom fast forwarded through half the movie (I didn't see any of the nude/car sex scene and I basically had to close my eyes anytime somebody was dying or dead.. so yeah, I missed the entire second half of the movie). 

As a married, 23-year-old mamma to be, I can totally appreciate where my parents were coming from and I am grateful that they cared enough to protect me. I plan to do the same with my kids. And I'm finally able to look back and laugh on it.

(And just a final side note: I can't stand Titanic today--I think the acting is terrible and the storyline is stupid.. what a difference 16 years make!)

Party, Party, I like to Party


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