G = Goonies (A-Z Challenge)

The movie The Goonies has a very special place in my heart and I think it shaped me in a several ways. I know that sounds like geeky hyperbole, but stick with me here.

Do you have any idea how much I wanted to live here, in THE Goonie house?

Do you have any idea how much I wanted to live here, in THE Goonie house?

As a young boy, I was very shy but still had my friends. We were little assholes (as most young boys are), but what we really longed for was adventure. A quest for treasure, perhaps? We would go through the neighborhood pretending to be chased by older boys, robots, goblins (my personal addition), and of course the Fratellis. We watched The Goonies frequently, and I watched it more than them (I’m sure everyone in my house was SO sick of the movie that they could vomit).

Yet, everything seemed wrong. I desperately wanted to BE a Goonie, not some short skinny kid in sunny Southern California. (I still plan to make an adult geek pilgrimage to Astoria, but I regret to say that I have not yet been). I wanted the trees and wind and cold of Astoria, Oregon. As an adult, loathing the heat and too much sun the way I do, I’m not sure if this was an early manifestation of my odd reverse seasonal depression…or if I was just some weird kid who was overly obsessed with a movie.

Pictured: a short skinny kid's dream.

Pictured: a short skinny kid’s dream.

But there was something else I didn’t realize until much later in life — I had a little boy crush on Brand, the older brother. And young Mikey wasn’t so bad, either. (Keep in mind that I was probably seven or eight years old when I finally first saw The Goonies).

Goonies - Brand and Mikey

I think part of me wanted an older brother to go on adventures with (Minds out of the gutter, please; this was totally innocent. Let’s keep this civil, thankyouverymuch), still another part of me wanted to grow up and be Brand or Mikey, and there was that just emerging part of me that kinda thought they were cool…in that way. *wink, wink* Looking back on that, I think it was my first real feeling of that sort, but I buried it away, and in some ways I’m glad I did. (Could you imagine how creepy watching that movie would be now?)

More than anything I wanted to live in Astoria and go on Goonie adventures. I wanted to have Goonie friends and hang out in windbreakers all day because it was cold. I wanted to go to THAT beach, which always looked delightfully cold and unpopulated compared to the near year-round sun of southern California. I wanted to search for treasure and go on pirate ships and be chased by pleasantly comedic-evil villains. (Walk the plank? Please. I could swim and loved the water. How was that bad?)

Contains treasure and an awesome diving board. Who's game?

Contains treasure and an awesome diving board. Who’s game?

More than anything, The Goonies exuded a sense of camaraderie, of true friendship, of what was truly important in life: pirates, treasure, caves, hanging out with your friends, and an awesome place to live. It was like Stand by Me for kids (both movies co-starred Corey Feldman. Coincidence? Hardly.) It gave a generation of boys and girls a feeling that we were part of something, that we could all be Goonies — whether we were nerds, jocks, loudmouths, the fat kids, cheerleaders, the sarcastic ones, or child prodigy inventors. The Goonies were all inclusive. You could be 100% yourself and still be welcome.

Perhaps I’m reaching. Maybe I’m viewing this movie through the nostalgia of a childhood favorite which still makes me happy to this day. Maybe I still feel like a child, like an honorary Goonie, even when I watch it today. And you know what? I don’t care. It’s pure, unadulterated awesomeness to me. There is not a single negative feeling associated with this movie, but it can consistently make me feel like a child — happy, excited, and ready for adventure. I would say that I will probably love this movie until the day I die, but after all…

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Alternate letter considerations: Golden Girls, Geekdom.

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~ by Darren Endymion on May 8, 2014.

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