It’s Rex Manning Day!*

6 Aug

(* Or how all I watched in Middle School was Empire Records)

Tuesday was a Primary Election day in the great State of Missouri which meant only one thing: I had to go back to hell my middle school since it’s my polling place. I don’t know about you, but middle school for me was full of awkward interactions with boys, wearing stupid oversized t-shirts that I secretly hated, wearing crazy shades of nailpolish like bright yellow and blue on my nails, dealing with pimples and bad haircuts, and trying to get the hot guy in the class to notice me while I was wearing said oversized t-shirts with pimples on my face. Let’s just chalk it up to three years of mostly ICK. 

Fortunately I did have a “crew” that I hung out with every single weekend for those three years. We took turns going to each other’s house, a mix of both boys and girls (before we figured out that boys and girls couldn’t *just* be friends) where we would eat junk food to fill our bottomless stomachs (ah, the days when calories didn’t matter and I could wear any bikini I wanted without feeling self-conscious), rock out to music from Cake (please see Exhibit A), The Beatles (we enjoyed rediscovering their music) and They Might Be Giants (they were cool in the mid 1990s, I promise. See Exhibit B), play board games and of course it just wasn’t a get together without our cult movie, Empire Records (see Exhibit C).

We’d act out the scenes. Sing the soundtrack. Shout “It’s Rex Manning Day!” at the top of our lungs. Dance all around whichever basement we were hanging out in that evening. This was our routine, our safety net during a time of such uncertainty and confusion about changing bodies, peer pressure and whatever else our adolescent minds were trying to grasp.

I think we had early curfews then, aka when mom and dad would pick us up, but each time the evening came to an end we’d promise to do it again next weekend. And we did. We even did it here and there in high school for old times sake. Although our friend group shifted a bit in high school when our paths crossed we’d smile and say “It’s Rex Manning Day!” to one another all the while being silently thankful that we had each other to lean on and grow up with for those few years.

Any particular movie or group of friends get you through middle school or your least favorite part of your teen years?

**(Don’t forget to enter the giveaway to win all-natural bug sprays & insecticides and check out my Vlogging Everyday in August progress so far!)**

Exhibit A: Cake’s cover of “I Will Survive.” I can’t even tell you how many times we listened to this song.

Exhibit B: They Might Be Giants, Birdhouse in Your Soul (still love this song)

Exhibit C: Various favorite scenes from Empire Records


18 Responses to “It’s Rex Manning Day!*”

  1. Becky August 6, 2010 at 7:56 am #

    I think I’ve only seen Empire Records once – this makes me want to re-watch it now!

  2. RootsAndRings August 6, 2010 at 9:04 am #

    Okay so I don’t have sound on my work computer so I SADLY cannot watch those clips. But OH how I love that movie. I cannot even tell you how many times I’ve seen it.

    “Oh Deborah, don’t be bitter! I’m sure with your ever growing collection of flesh mutilating silver appendages and new neo-nazi boot camp makeover, the boys will come a-runnin!”

    “Maybe you bite me.”

    :) Oh Nora.. Somehow I now think we are soul sisters!

    PS- I got pretty attached to Without A Trace for a while because “Joe” was the main character.

  3. Becky August 6, 2010 at 9:17 am #

    You were the one I commented below on Amber’s blog today so check back there for my compliment to you! :)

  4. Maddy August 6, 2010 at 9:46 am #

    Oh I love the 90’s!! Brings back so many fun memories, though I didn’t have a very big click! I was switching schools a lot back then, so I kept having to make new friends everywhere I went. Anyways, I loved Empire Records and I was big fan of The Cranberries then too. I think they had two tracks on the Empire Record soundtrack :) And I still have The Cranberries CDs :)

  5. Amber from Girl with the Red Hair August 6, 2010 at 9:59 am #

    I’ve never seen that movie!! But this story was fun, I loved it. I had a big group of boy and girl friends in middle school as well, we used to hang out every weekend or so and once we got to high school we all kind of went our separate ways but would still exchange inside jokes when we passed in the hallways and stuff sometimes!

  6. Mel August 6, 2010 at 10:03 am #

    OMG – I LOOOOOOOOVE this movie so much (and your post!), I can’t even tell you! AND I have to admit that I listened to “Sugar High” yesterday. And the day before. And They Might Be Giants still are cool… I don’t know who you have to defend them from! :o)

  7. Megan August 6, 2010 at 11:28 am #

    Ok, I think you just about described my middle school experience, too– I secretly hated those oversized t-shirts, but I so badly wanted to be cool! Empire Records is definitely a big part of my middle school memories, but more so the soundtrack than the movie. Other albums that make me think of middle school include the Romeo and Juliet soundtrack, whatever 311’s first big album was (I recently heard them on the radio and was instantly 13 years old again), and of course, Cake’s Fashion Nugget. Oh, Cake.

  8. Amanda August 6, 2010 at 7:01 pm #

    Oh my goodness – TOTALLY the cult movie of my middle school years! I bought it on DVD recently and should definitely watch it again ;) And I had a Rex Manning Day button on my backpack!!

  9. Lisa from Lisa's Yarns August 6, 2010 at 7:26 pm #

    OH. MY. GOD. This settles it, we are officially twins. Guess what movie E and I talked about on Wed? Empire freaking Records! I had not thought about that in ages, but something brought the memory back and we talked about how much it rocked. Now I really really want to watch it but I stupidly don’t own it! But my best friend did and we def watched it A LOT. Too funny! I can just hear us talking along to the part where they say, “Well Sinaid-oh-rebellion. Shock me, shock me with that deviant behavior”.

    And Cake? Ultimate break up CD. I lost my Cake CD along the way, too. :( Boo.

  10. Erin August 6, 2010 at 7:31 pm #

    Well. It’s official. I have to go watch Empire Records RIGHT NOW.

  11. E.P. August 6, 2010 at 11:45 pm #

    Empire Records was one of my FAVORITE movies when I was in middle school, too, and to this day, I use random lines from the movie. Just for fun. And randomly hear a lot of songs from the movie — like the one from the very last scene where everyone is dancing on top of the roof — at random times. Like when I’m in the car dealership…

    Love this post, and miss you, lady!

  12. Kyla Roma August 7, 2010 at 11:36 am #

    Empire records is so classic! :) For me it’s Empire Records & Rocky Horror, I found that movie for the first time in grade 10 and was just obsessed. lol

    Have an amazing time with Ashley today, have fun!! :)

  13. Jennifer August 7, 2010 at 10:21 pm #

    I love this post! It brings back fun memories of middle school and high school. I’m going to have to do a similar post soon!

  14. veronica August 7, 2010 at 10:40 pm #

    I’m with you sistah! Middle school was such an awkward time for me as well. This movie really brings it home for me. :)

  15. Ellen @FirednFabulous August 9, 2010 at 3:55 pm #

    Ohhmygosh I was OBSESSED with Empire Records back in the day. You know, when I was young and naive and thought Ethan Embry would be my boyfriend/husband/love slave one day.

  16. Jessica August 9, 2010 at 9:52 pm #

    I’ll admit it, I never knew that Rex Manning reference until I rewatched that movie a few months ago. It was like a lightbulb went off! That was a good movie.

  17. sleepyjane August 10, 2010 at 5:34 am #

    Knowing you love Empire Records just make me adore you all the more!! Awesome, awesome movie.

  18. ClaireSuzanne August 10, 2010 at 6:59 pm #

    Oh Rexy, You’re so Sexy!

    I love this movie!

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