I was in the supermarket when I turned and saw the headline on the cover of a gossip magazine. It was about Justin Timberlake. If you know me, then you know that I am a Justin Timberlake fan. It wasn't a good headline. If I was famous, I'm sure I would have plenty of judgy headlines, so I'm not throwing any stones. I'll stand by my man.
I was always a Backstreet Boys fan. I know that I was too old for boy bands... and I didn't care. "As Long As You Love Me" was a top 40 hit when I met Santi. He would take me to the Virgin Records in Times Square and I would listen to the song every time we passed which was most weeks. He finally bought me the CD for Christmas. So, I was definitely a BSB fan first and foremost.
When NSYNC came out, I was angry. Who were these new Whippersnappers coming up trying to compete with my boys? I didn't think of the blond curly haired one at all. He looked like a Chia Pet but instead of green stems, he was growing ramen noodles.
But then... No Strings Attached came out. Or maybe it was when they performed "I Thought She Knew" on TRL with none other than Carson Daly. I just happened to catch the performance but it was the words that hooked me. What clinched it was the 1st Latin Grammy Awards when I tuned in to watch Son by Four sing "A Puro Dolor" and heard the Spanish version of "This I Promise You" by NSYNC. Hearing the two groups perform felt a little like falling in love.
Later, it was Justin's voice that called to me. When Justified came out, his songs felt like he was singing right to me. Santi understood that if I ever met Justin, I would just leave with him. I told him, to pray that I never meet him. It wasn't about how he looked, it was about his songs and how they made me feel, especially when I was having a hard time. Justin seemed to understand me the way that I wanted to be understood.
When Santi died, and I went to Justin's concert with Cari, I cried hysterically when he sang, "Mirrors." Cari laughed at me as tears streamed down my face. It was the closest that I would ever get to Justin Timberlake. Justin is to me is like the color pink. They comfort me. I have a neighbor who is a major Jon Bon Jovi fan. This will be me in my old age. Justin will be doing his shows and I will be attending. He is part of who I am. It's a thing. I will continue to listen to his music and I'll know when I met a good guy when I meet someone who understands me the way Justin seems to understand me.