Being a tween in the early 2000s was pretty tame. We didn’t grow up with the hottest couple being Kurt and Courtney or Keith Richards and Anita Pallenberg—it was Joe Jonas and Demi fucking Lovato. When I was a young little punk in my own right, all of my friends drooled over Aaron Carter and had posters of Jesse McCartney or the Jonas Brothers on their walls; they always went out to buy the latest Justin Bieber CD or sped home to watch the newest High School Musical. But me? I was all punk all the time.
My juvenile self was always a bit dark. I had T-shirts with a strung out Sid Vicious on them, begged my dad to take me to Target to buy a Nine Inch Nails CD, had U.K. Subs pins on my backpack, and watched Sid and Nancy or Rocky Horror Picture Show on an endless loop—I even memorized the dance number for “Timewarp.”
I’ve always been head-over-heels in love with the punk ethos—far into my young adulthood—with going to loud shows, getting covered in other people’s sweat and beer, being in the eye-line of dreamy bassists and lead singers. A pseudo-groupie or something like that.
My childhood was so saturated with the gritty, filthy romanticism of the punk era that it defined my taste for everything else—for music, for clothes, for books, for hair, for makeup, for friends, for relationships, for my life (not to be dramatic or anything). I used to daydream about having a boyfriend in a band who had dark circles under his eyes, dirty dark hair, and an equally well-worn leather jacket. I haven’t been in many relationships, but nine times out of 10, any infatuation I’ve had has been with a musician, some more doomed than others (the person and the relationship).
My heart kind of hurts as Richard Hell sings, “love comes in spurts.” I always said my type was someone who looked like they were the bassist of a punk band and probably had a nasty drug habit—a self-fulfilling prophecy, I guess, because I ended up with one, but that’s a story for another time.