Home > Composition Book > [September, 1989] Great, Cute, and Fabulous

[September, 1989] Great, Cute, and Fabulous


Dear Journal,

School’s great and me and Elaine are starting the cool group.

Also, Mitchell is cute.

Also, Mrs. Angelo (our music teacher) is doing this play thingie that I’m auditioning for.  I’m dying to get a solo.

Also Friday I went to a Debbie Gibson concert and it was fabulous!

Well I guess that wraps it up. —Bye—

Debbie-Gibson live

I wanted this entire outfit in 1989. Instead, I just got the hat.

What more does an 11-year-old in 1989 need to be happy? Cool group in progress? Check. Cute boy in class? Check. Audition for a musical (or “play thingie”) in which I might get a solo? Check. Debbie Gibson concert? Double check!

I didn’t write about the concert at length (probably to save blank pages for mooning over crushes and ranting about friends who done me wrong), but I loved the show. My parents took me to see her in Madison Square Garden, and I couldn’t believe how many thousands (!) of people came to the show. Our seats were pretty far back, but as soon as the music started I forgot the distance between the three of us and the stage. Debbie’s silhouette appeared behind a white screen and the crowd went wild (seven years later, when seeing Nine Inch Nails live, I would be reminded of this concert when Trent Reznor did the same thing, only tore through the screen).

Considering that Debbie Gibson released only two albums at that point, I’m pretty sure she played all my favorite songs. When she finished the last song, my parents and I got up to leave and were surprised when the music started up again a few minutes later. Both my parents had been professional musicians, but it took Debbie Gibson to teach us how to do a proper encore.

The most surprising thing about that night was how much my brooding and difficult-to-please father enjoyed the concert. Despite being critical of much of the music I listened to (especially from the teen years onward), he found Gibson to be a talented singer and was impressed with her live performance. He spoke of that Debbie Gibson show well into his later life and every time he did, a look of surprised wonder always came over him.

  1. Liz
    November 5, 2009 at 8:18 am

    I like the part about your dad’s reaction, even years later. 🙂

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