Riva author Heidi Rice talks about some inspirational MTV watching and THAT guy from the Katy Perry video Teenage Dreams.
Okay, first off THAT guy does have a name. He's male model, actor and writer Josh Kloss (not easy to say when you've had a few too many margaritas I can tell you!). Now when I decided to pick him for my coveted Male on Monday slot I did start to do some research into him... And quickly stopped.
Because you see the thing about male models is, they're much better as an illusion, IMHO, than a real guy. Now, I'm sure it's very hard work being a male model (the pressure to be constantly buff is tough, those of us who aren't constantly buff should know!). It's a highly competitive industry and you probably have to be thick-skinned and dedicated. But that doesn't alter the fact that these are guys who make their living looking pretty and the minute they start talking about why they're so pretty and the challenge of being so pretty, and...Well, you get my drift, it can be a little off-putting.
So I'm not going to talk about Josh Kloss, eventhough I'm sure he's a very nice guy. Because the guy I really want to talk about is the illusion: THAT guy in the Katy Perry video. Because immediately I saw that video, with Katy warbling away about her living a teenage dream and her guy looking all surly and sexy and intense next to her in the open-topped Mustang, and on the beach later as they dance together (loved the fact that he wasn't a very good dancer, made him seem rather cute and vulnerable)... The minute I saw that, I was whisked back in time to every guy I ever had a crush on at school... And I was living my teenage dreams too.
Now, I won't pretend that any of them were as good-looking as Mr Kloss, but to me, at 17 they were plenty surly, sexy and intense and when they looked at you through a haze of Benson's smoke you'd feel special. They were bad boys who drove motorbikes and smoked things they shouldn't and if they offered you a lift to Kensington Market or Portobello Road after you'd bunked off maths together, you'd immediately jump on the back. As you clung on and smelt leather and petrol and felt like a wild child, you'd also be secretly wondering if you'd just signed your own death warrant as they dipped you round corners at a billion miles an hour (probably only about ten mph actually as these were 125cc bikes that made more noise than lawnmowers!) but of course those near death moments only made the ride more thrilling, and the guy you were with more exciting.
Yeah, THAT guy in the Kate Perry video - and the song confirms it with the line 'we'll be young forever' - are THOSE guys. And when you're a woman of a certain age, watching MTV with your sons, it's wonderful and incredibly inspiring to be reminded of THAT girl, who did really stupid things with really sexy guys and can still remember how exciting it was.... Oh yeah, and luckily for her, survived long enough to write books about them!
Heidi's current Presents Extra, Surf, Sea and a Sexy Stranger, is out now in the US. And is being given away for free in the UK here. Her first RIVA, Cupcakes and Killer Heels, hits the UK next month, but is already available on the M&B site. Come have a chat about THOSE guys or even her books on her website, her blog, Facebook and Twitter (@HeidiRomRice).