Among my many talents is the ability to do a mean Valley Girl imitation. (I also do a pretty good New York cabbie impression and a dead-on Jerry Lewis “Hey, Lady!” that cracks B. up every time.) I’m one of those native New Yorkers who has been blessed not to have very much of an accent (though the errant added “r” has been known to come out once in a while). But for someone who has had to deal with meeting non-New Yorkers who love to say, “Oh, you’re from New Yawk?” and think they’re being so clever, I’ve got a couple of words for you: Don’t even.
So now I feel it’s only fair for me to have the chance to dish it out too. Playfully. Sweetly. And, above all, with stiletto (Louboutin, of course) precision. So, like, okay?
I can report from home here in LA that Valley Girl is still alive and well and she still ends all her sentences like a question? She’s got her own language that’s a culture (shock) unto itself. For example, here’s how she might describe the movie Legally Blonde (the main character, Elle, could be one of her best friends):
I was like so excited when Elle followed her boyfriend to Harvard — it was so totally amazing! But then when she found he was already engaged to that other girl, I was like all, “Shut up!” So lame, for sure. I mean, “What. Ever.” But then Elle got a new boyfriend who was way better than that other dude. That first guy was such a total poser. Her new boyfriend is a major hunk. Like seriously. And they’re engaged! OMG — I can’t even believe it. And now her first boyfriend wants her back. As if. Duh.
I ran into a real modern-day Valley Girl a couple of weeks ago at the supermarket. To her credit, she was working, bagging groceries. She was in the midst of telling the cashier about her boyfriend, “And then he called me and he was all, ‘So where do you want to go tonight?’ And I was all, ‘I don’t know.’ And he was all, ‘I’ll call you later.’ And I was all…'” At this point, she was distracted by the cover of a magazine I was buying. One of the cover lines read, “See inside for this season’s must-have haircut!” So she did. Literally. Stopped bagging, leafed through the magazine, took note of the haircut and said, “I totally had to look — it’s like so awesome?” Once done looking, she figured she might want to totally get back to work. But she had just one question.
“Which foods do you want me to put in the frozen-foods bag?
Oh, I don’t know. The frozen ones?
© 2013 Claudia Grossman