That’s it. I’m done. I refuse to allow this to continue any longer. The information age has given too many people the platform to hyperbolize how “great” or “amazing” or “incredible” anything is. I was playing a board game with my family the other day, and my mother exclaimed “Wow, this is a fun game” to which I replied “Yeah, but it’s no Goonies.” “You know what son, you’re right. Go share what you know with the world, enlighten them with your perceptive gift.” So, it is without hesitation that I clear the air and present 8 things that are definitively not “The Goonies.”
1) “Stand By Me”- Controversial? Yes. Incorrect? No. I think we can all agree that, though awarded an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay, this movie is a cheap “Goonies” wannabe. Besides its inability to properly incorporate a Pirate mythos, it also didn’t give me an acceptable two-hour respite from my parents’ continued neglect.
2) A “Titanic: The Legend Goes On” VHS- Much like “The Goonies,” this animated classic was snubbed by the academy despite its ability to captivate the imagination. My Grandmother gave me this as a bar-mitzvah gift. Maybe next time she’ll reveal that I actually have a 3rd brother named Sloth chained to a chair in our basement. At least it would be somebody to keep me company on lonely Saturday nights, Gramma.
3) The “Tony Hawk: Pro Skater 2” Soundtrack- I’m surprised to have to make the distinction, but apparently it’s unclear: The Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2 Soundtrack is good, but definitely not “The Goonies.” How do I know: Where is the drab setting of Astoria, Washington? Where is the precocious incorporation of vulgarity in adolescent conversation? Why don’t I have any meaningful relationships, Tony? Yeah, not happening. Next!
4) A Framed Picture of Frank Stallone- No. Not even once was a framed picture of the “truTV” star anywhere close to being “The Goonies.” Discussion over. Hey Frank! How about you mend the many failed romances throughout my young adulthood!
5) “Principia Mathematica” by Bertrand Russell- This was a tough one. Much like the Goonies, this seminal work walks the line between cheerful and gruesome. But, while the foundational principles of mathematical theory may have laid the blueprint for “The Goonies,” it does not feature a soundtrack with songs by Cyndi Lauper. I wish I was Cyndi Lauper, maybe people would know me.
6) 1988 Vice Presidential Candidate Trenton Stokes- The most tragic entry on this list. I admit it is easy to confuse the two. In fact, Stokes’ campaign platform was “Goonies never say die.” But what Stokes boasts in a populist agenda, he lacks in a freezer full of Rocky Road ice cream. In fact, I ate so much Rocky Road as a child that I was too insecure to pursue my true passions in life. I am now working in Customer Service at T.J. Maxx.
7) 750 ml Bottle of Fernet Branca- We can agree that the difference is subtle, even nuanced. It is true, that like “The Goonies,” this herbal Italian liqueur is bottled in a Fratelli Distillery. It is also true that they both proudly boast a 39% ABV. Both also go quite well when mixed with Coca-Cola. You know what else does? My only true friend, Jack Daniels — he cares about me. But closer inspection will reveal that there is a disheartening lack of fluid liquidity in the makeup of “The Goonies.” This is the only instance where “The Goonies” falls short of being something more than it is now. Otherwise, it is a perfect film.
8) Makita 4×24 Belt Sander- This was not something I concluded until I became a legal adult. Both the film and the sander move at breakneck speeds. Both feature an obnoxious, privileged bully whose Dad owns a country club — just like Stephan Massi, the kid who bullied me into social obscurity. For 18 years, I was convinced that the electric staple of construction sites across America was, in fact, the 1985 Richard Donner classic. It took an introspective trek on Peyote through the American West to realize this life-changing fact: while both the film and the sander share a family of disgruntled, pizza loving gangsters, there just isn’t even a trace of an underground maze of booby traps or the threat of gruesome peril in the Makita 4×24. Speaking of families, I don’t love mine. In fact, I think I would be a better person if I were raised by the Fratellis. At least they would talk to me. Life is unfair. No one ever came to my birthday parties.