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I was twelve. I still thought that my pink overall shorts from Old Navy were the height of fashion, and when I grew up, I wanted to be Lizzie McGuire. I could jump 1,050 times in a row on a pogo stick without falling down but the closest I had ever been to love was staring at a boy from 500 feet away.

It was sometime in the summer before I started seventh grade when one of the friends invited me to see a movie with her (and her parents because, you know, we were twelve and weren’t allowed to go to the movies alone). I actually went to the movie having no idea what I was in for, because I had never been to Disneyland and had never heard of Pirates of the Caribbean.

Never in my life will I forget the moment when, at the beginning of the movie, Will Turner’s face came on screen for the first time, and  my life changed forever. It was the moment that I realized what love was.

ImageOkay, okay, it wasn’t love, but infatuation, definitely. Suddenly there was this new world out there with brave, brown-eyed, english-accented men who could fence and climb rigging and steal ships. He was so dangerous, he sailed with the good pirates… he fought the bad ones. He had a beard (well, if you could call it a beard).

I remember watching the end scene where Elizabeth’s dad asks her if she’s sure that she wants to be with Will, because he’s only a blacksmith. Then Elizabeth says, “No, he’s a pirate”, and the distinct thought ran through my mind that I had never been so jealous of another person in my entire life.

The obsession waned sometime in middle school, but it never left me, and that day has always stayed with me. To this day, just the theme music will take me back to being twelve years old, in the days when I would give my friends candy in exchange for them printing out pictures of Orlando Bloom to put on my binders. Will Turner will always be a part of my adolescence.

I think everyone has their own ‘Will Turner’, the person who, maybe through a movie, maybe through a book, opened their eyes to the big world of infatuation. Who is your Will Turner?

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