I must explain.
Some pretty weird shit reminds me of childhood (for example, the movie Total Recall TOTALLY reminds me of my childhood but that's a story for another time).
But I must say one of the very FIRST things I think of when it comes to growing up in Canoga Park is A Chrous Line. It probably started because when we had babysitters, we'd rent movies and I'm sure I picked this out at some point (a below adequate film representation - that I loved - of the broadway show, starring Michael Douglas as - wait for it - a CHOREOGRAPHER). The casette tape came next (and I still have it!) and I would inflict it on my brother in carpool (I remember this well because we commuted to a school out of our neighborhood). I knew every single word to each song and in my head, dreamt about playing almost every part - even the male ones (especially because I wanted to tap dance to "I Could Do That" which is the MOST fun song).
I wanted to be Diana Morales because she grew up and proved wrong all those who told her she'd be "Nothing." I wanted to be Paul who was trying so very hard to find himself. I even wanted to be Val, because she had a great pair of you-know-whats...
In high school, a song composed by Hamlisch became my staple autidion song, "If He Really Knew me" from They're Playing Our Song, and I felt in a way like he'd managed to score my life.
Composer Marvin Hamlisch is in a rare club. Golden Globes, an Oscar, a Tony, an Emmy, a Grammy AND a Pulitzer Prize. He was known to have a great sense of humor and a terrible amount of patience (you'd have to, to start your career as Barbra Streidand's pianist).
And if you still don't know who he is, at least you might have seen this:
However, if you want to know, this is my favorite song from his collection. I would sing it to myself when I was really sad. I'm absolutely positive I had no idea what the song was about at the age of eight, but I somehow cherished its sentiment.
Rest in peace, Mr. Hamlisch. Your life's work left an indelible mark on my heart.