I can pinpoint the moment that I became a junk store junkie.
It was while watching Pretty in Pink starring Molly Ringwald, Jon Cryer and Andrew McCarthy.
Andie had the most awesome crazy sense of style. Any scene that involved her clothes had me enthralled. She made used clothes cool, could take a few mismatched pieces and create an outfit that made the mall girls look pathetic. I started going to thrift stores after watching this movie and even wore an old 1950's prom dress to my Junior Ring Dance.
I wanted to be Andie.
I wanted to be her and run off with Ducky while the Psychedelic Furs played in the background.
I grew up in New Jersey and felt so out of place all the time. The high school I went to was very status conscious and while my family certainly wasn't poor, they were originally from New Hampshire which meant that they had a strong sense of yankee thrift. My clothes were never the right brand, my hair wasn't big and I liked weird music. I was a misfit, at least in my own head.
And then John Hughes wrote this character. I felt like he was peeking into my life. It was his gift to create teenage characters who were as awkward and miserable as real teenagers. Even better, he turned the misfits into the cool kids and his characters made me feel visible, relevant and well, cool.
He died today at the age of 59.
Thank you John, for telling the truth, showing us love and making us laugh.