Oh, Huey Lewis and The News, I remember exactly where I was the first time I heard this song. I was in fourth grade and I was in our elementary school gym. We were having some sort of talent show and the sixth graders came out and lip-synced this one.
The sixth graders were a big deal, Huey Lewis and The News, because after sixth grade, they headed on over to Chandler to go to the high school. They were the senior class of the elementary school set.
I remember being filled with a mix of emotions watching the performance of this song, Huey Lewis and The News. For one thing, I was totally enthralled. This was the first “modern” song that I’d really ever heard outside of the occasional snippets I’d hear from my older cousins and aunts. And they were playing it right there in school and everything! I remember feeling excited and maybe confused and maybe even kind of a little bit filled with dread; there was something ominous and thrilling about those opening synthesizer chords.
And I remember feeling jealous and envious. Because the guy taking on the Huey Lewis role was every girls’ dream come true. He was smart and cute and funny and handsome and all those things. Every girl in the whole school was screaming as soon as he came running out in his brown leather jacket. He was really popular, Huey Lewis and The News. Even worse, he was actually a really nice guy, so you couldn’t really hate him even though you really wanted to. But you couldn’t, because he really was just a genuinely nice guy. He was the same all through high school as well. The only thing I can think of that was maybe less than perfect about him was that he had a penchant to moon everyone. But I think he had a nice butt, so no one minded that, either. Dammit!
Anyway, I think he’s still a charmer and is a sports reporter now or something with a pretty wife and some kids. I would love to say that if it weren’t for him, I would have totally been able to date way more girls in school if they weren’t so hung up on him, but I wouldn’t be fooling anybody. Even if I was the only guy in the whole school, I still don’t think I’d have done very well.
But this isn’t about my envy of the many guys who were and are more handsome and clever and athletic and talented than me. Because I don’t have that kind of time. This is about hearing you guys for the very first time, Huey Lewis and The News, and knowing right away that even if the cutest guy in the whole elementary school hadn’t been shaking his butt to this one, we’d all have still been excited to hear this one anyway. Because you’re awesome like that.