Monday, June 18, 2012

A Mysterious Magazine

Since this article was originally published in the local newspaper a week ago, people have told me about Erik Estrada, Shaun Cassidy and "Da Doo Ron Ron," and the Jonas Brothers. I suppose when a magazine has been around for nearly fifty years, there are going to be a great variety of generational memories. It's been fun learning about babysitting allowances being saved and walls being covered, and I'd love to hear even more. 

Thanks for reading. and please consider sharing your own Tiger Beat memories.

A Tiger Beat magazine recently turned up in my house. Seriously, they’re still making Tiger Beat. I thought it died with parachute pants, eight-inch bangs, and Baby on Board, but it seems I was mistaken - about Tiger Beat, not the parachute pants.

But what drum brought this beat to my house? Magazines don’t just randomly appear on kitchen counters, and I certainly never wrote a check for a subscription.

First, I weeded out the fringe suspects.

Grandma and Grandpa: No flowers, no recipes, no woodworking, and no sports in Tiger Beat. Wasn’t the grandparents.

The two-year-old nephew: No Thomas the Tank Engine pictures. He’s out.

Aunt and uncle: No coupons. No lists of baby names. Nope, not them.

Time to look closer to home. Time to look IN the home, as a matter of fact. Four people live in the house, which left three main suspects. There were only three main suspects because one of the residents, me, was not a suspect. Trust me.

The boy: Despite liking music, a staple of Tiger Beat since Monkees made music, and having a proclivity for posters on his bedroom walls, it doesn’t appear to be the boy. Unless Tiger Beat features photos of Prince Fielder and Justin Verlander - you know, DETROIT Tigers - which it undoubtedly does not, then it wasn’t the boy.

The wife: Drawing on my best memories of the magazine, which are admittedly limited, I felt this issue of Tiger Beat was severely lacking in pictures of Ralph Macchio, Kirk Cameron, and Patrick Swayze. True, the posters could have already been nipped out, but had that been the case, I’d be waking up to Daniel-san, Mike Seaver, and Johnny Castle on my bedroom walls. The wife was no longer a suspect.

That left the thirteen-year-old daughter as the only logical option.

By process of elimination, the culprit, I believe, had been exposed, and it didn’t take much sleuthing for suspicions to be confirmed. There was music coming from her room, paper trimmings and scissors on the floor, and walls covered with photos of floppy-haired boys.

It’s a classic example of the more things change, the more they stay the same. Regardless of the decade, certain truths remain evident: Whether it’s Monkees or New Kids or One Direction, groups of shaggy-headed boys will make music, and hoards of girls will obsess over them. And cover their walls with the boys’ photos.

It doesn’t matter if these young men are singing about why Sleepy Jean needs to cheer up (Oh, what can it mean?) or explaining how she’s got the right stuff (Oh-oh, oh-oh-oh), or wondering how everyone else in the room can see it (You don’t know-oh-oh, you don’t know you’re beau-ti-ful), the chorus will echo throughout the house ad nauseam. Moms will reminisce about their past obsessions. Dads will cover their ears and complain about the noise. 

And everyone can’t help but sing along.

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