The first time I ever looked at boys being anything more than smelly annoying ratbags was when I was 15 years old. It wasn’t the spiky haired kid next door and it wasn’t my best friends older brother, it was a group of sweaty guys wearing low slung jeans playing volleyball in the park. Watching their muscles flex while they jumped in the air, landed in the sand and slap each other on the back had my pulse racing. I remember slinking down in my chair feeling embarrassed. I was staring at these guys like they were my favourite candy – but damn – I couldn’t fight it 🙂
There was this one guy amongst the pack that held my attention far more than the rest. Wearing faded jeans, hand wrapped in a bandage, jet black hair and aviators, he was by far the cutest. He had to leave the game early, had a few things he had to take care of, and I wanted nothing more than to go with him. His name – it was Maverick, and he was my first crush! Fighter jets, guys in leather jackets – it was testosterone overload, and every girl, hell every women on the planet was in love with him. Me, as I got older my crush never died, I still wanted to ride him all night long – oops – I wanted to ride with him, on his bike – seesh, dirty mind 😉
Maverick, Iceman, Goose, Viper and Jester, every young man wanted to be them, and every woman wanted to be with them. But there was only one woman the young jet fighter pilot had eyes for, and that person was Charlotte, also known as Charlie. Tall, blonde and a card-carrying member of the leather jacket group, Charlie was a spitfire. As an astrophysicist and civilian Top Gun instructor at the Navy’s Fighter Weapons School at Miramar in San Diego, Charlie’s job was to teach the best fighter pilots from across the United States tactical manoeuvres and war-time strategies. She was a professional and never dated her students, that was until she met Maverick.
Whenever I hear the Righteous Brothers sing their romantic song You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling, I remember the time when Maverick first hit on Charlie. It was at one of San Diego’s bars, where all the boys from the navy program would go and let off some steam. Maverick spotted the leggy blonde across the room and decided to use one of his practiced moves. Grabbing a microphone from the jukebox, Mav and his airforce buddy Goose approached Charlie in what can only be described as one of the most funny, exciting and most romantic moments I have seen. Did it work? Oh yes it did, but not quite the way Mav was hoping 🙂
During the course of his training, Maverick’s relationship with his teacher became less and less professional, with the pair spending most of their spare time riding his bike or well ummm, riding each other 😉 But it wasn’t always hot sweaty moments under the light of the moon, Maverick had a few points to prove, like who was the best pilot and that inverted manoeuvres really could happen. After the death of his closest friend, Maverick also needed more than just a cocky attitude to win a place as one of the countries best fighter pilots.
I will never forget the winter of 1986, and will always remember the boys and their toys. “I feel the need, the need for speed” became one of the most commonly used phrases of the decade with guys strutting their stuff in leather jackets and slicked back hair, but it was the passion between Maverick and his instructor that I remember the most. He was a confident cocky bastard, and we all ate it up, but only one person had pride and place in his heart, and always would. Maverick and Charlie fell in love in 1986, and this year they celebrate their 30th anniversary. I guess they never lost that loving feeling 😉
x x x