Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Shocking Confession

I just did something that's going to make you lose your good opinion of me. That is, if you have a good opinion of me. If I squandered it long ago and now you just stop by to gawk from a safe distance, you're going to love this.

I took Jarrah to see Justin Bieber Never Say Never this afternoon. And she didn't even ask me to.

Probably that second sentence is making you recoil in horror at the possibility that I am myself a "Belieber," a woman of a certain age who lunges over police gates in Lincoln and Poughkeepsie, screaming for an autograph in my hand-painted "Justin 4 Ever" t-shirt.

But no, I actually only know about such people because I saw the movie. So why did I see the movie? Hmmm. Well, it's getting some oddly good reviews. And Jarrah has spoken of JB admiringly ever since she did a choreographed dance number to "Baby" in her Our Little Stars camp last summer. And it's minimum day. And raining. And I couldn't muster any enthusiasm for Gnomeo and Juliet.

But are those real reasons? Probably not. In fact, I am rather interested in Justin Bieber, from a remote, somewhat sociological perspective. That sounds so elitist. I don't mean it that way. He's just so ridiculously famous. I am often interested in things that seem age-inappropriate for me. Gossip Girl. Bad movies starring Jim Sturgess. That other Justin: Timberlake. So I was wondering: what is the deal with Justin Bieber? Because my exposure to him thus far--limited though it was--left me completely mystified.

Let's start with the fact that he's 16 but really looks--and sounds--12. That I can't seem to identify a single one of his songs--except for "Baby," and that's Jarrah's fault--and have, even now, forgotten every single song that played in the movie's concert footage. That I think he sounds like Hilary Duff or Taylor Swift or somebody who's not quite as pretty but biologically may boast more estrogen. And let's not forget those sneakers--what is UP with that?

I thought maybe I'd appreciate him more if I saw the movie. And I like to be culturally aware. I also figured that if he has any staying power, there's a strong chance I'll be hearing a lot about him in the next few years, since a member of his fan demographic lives under my roof. I figured it wasn't long until--like the girls in the movie--she's sporting a "Mrs. Jarrah Bieber" t-shirt and crying when he cuts his hair.

(A small aside: I am more than a little afraid of 8-year-old trolls hacking their way through the virgin forests of the internet to my blog and roasting me on a spit now that I've blasphemed their golden idol.)

So, the movie. At first I was downright fascinated. I can see how he attracted the likes of Usher with his unflappable confidence and brilliant white teeth. And I'll grudgingly admit that his voice is nice. It was also funny when he ate donuts out of the garbage--he's just a kid, after all. But the movie felt looooong. And I think it felt that way because it was filled with Justin Bieber being Justin Bieber, singing, doing what passes for hip-hop, goofing around with his entourage, and there's only so much of that I want to see. Which I guess means I'm not a Belieber. I have to admit, I'm a little relieved.

(Another small aside: the damaged 12-year-old girl in me did sob--wetly and lustily--when gobsmacked girls were picked from the audience to be serenaded on stage by the Bieb, clutching their red roses and trying not to lose it completely.)

But I know what you're all really wondering: how did Jarrah find the movie? Is she a Belieber?

You may be relieved, Readers: the answer is no. She watched more or less patiently for the first hour, and then asked me frequently if it was almost over. While that's par for the course for some kids, my little miss is a movie pro and normally riveted until the credits if the movie is good. Her first comment, about 20 minutes in:

"Oh, so this movie has only boys in it." I whispered that Hannah Montana would be showing up later, and she was pleased about that.

Her only other comment: "I just don't see why Justin Bieber is famous." Hush, my angel--this theater is probably full of tiny, brace-mouthed minions who will be happy to report you to Bieber Headquarters for such unenlightened sentiments.

And that was it. Now, I could read into this, and speculate: that she's too young for Bieber Fever, perchance. But instead I'm feeling a bit smug that she's just not a silly, dreamy kind of girl--like her mother.

Or, I can look at the evidence right in front of my face that tells me exactly what kind of girl she is, the kind already established by her extended fascination with vampires, ghosts, zombies, monsters, The Last Airbender and Scooby-Doo, and further supported by the one thing that truly interested her about the movie: the preview. In which a teenage surfer girl's arm is chewed off by a shark and she has to learn to surf again with only one.

"Mommy," she asked as we walked to the car, "why didn't they SHOW the shark chewing off her arm? They should have shown that part."

And then she talked about how and why sharks eat people all the way home. One less lonely girl...

5 comments:

Jennifer said...

I'm with Jarrah...I don't understand why he's famous either. I mean I guess I do because of all the tweens and younger, but I don't see it. In our school talent show last year, 90% of the kids sang some of his songs. That's the first I'd ever heard of him.

Myrnie said...

ahaha...awesome :)You know, I couldn't tell you one Gaga, Bieber, Montana, Perry, or Swift song. Is there a support group for that?? Is Jarrah going to see the shark movie? :)

Stephanie said...

I want to be a 'belieber' just cause I love how it sounds.

Paul and Heather said...

bless her little heart...I would have wanted to see the arm chewed off too...don't tease me.

Michelle said...

You're so awesome! I get it--you were just trying to be socially aware. There is some real merit to it. I have imagined myself going for the same reason.

My girls, 11 and 8, have NO interest in going. Not a lick. They both say he sounds like a girl. I find it funny they both refuse to fall for all the hip out there--never wanted Hannah shirts, no Justin, no Jonas Bros--if something is popular, they are smugly not interested. :) Kinda weird, but I don't think I'll complain.

Jarrah is awesome. She knows a good part of a movie when she hears one. They didn't try to reenact the attack at all?