A First Love Story of Mistaken Identity

If it’s 2003 and if you’re in the third grade, then you’ve absolutely seen Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl. I saw it, and I left that cheap movie theater a changed woman-child. I was 9, and the closest thing to love I’d seen in my playground days was a boy in in Kindergarten who told his mom he “liked” me. She relayed the news to my mother, who relayed it to me, to which I responded: YUCK. My mother did not feed this response back through the grapevine.


No, my first run-in with love was while I was staring at a screen gorging myself with popcorn (very much a foreshadow of my dates in high school, but that’s another story). Orlando Bloom as Will Turner is the epitome of perfect. I don’t need to persuade you; this photo says it all:

Every single girl left that movie wishing they could be Elizabeth Swann. This probably also has something to do with the undeniable beauty of Keira Knightley, but I digress. So, after watching the film and understanding I had indeed seen the man I was destined to marry, I felt it was only polite that I catch his name in order to doodle it anywhere and everywhere. I saw the credits: Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, Geoffrey Rush… I must have looked away because the next thing I know I have it in my mind that the love of my life’s name is Geoffrey Rush. Boy, did I tell everyone this bit of information. Friends, family, teachers, not a soul went without hearing about my new-found love. For reference, here’s a photo of dear old Geoffrey from the movie:

Now tell me that isn’t handsome! To be fair, it is a terrible photo of my ex-lover, he looks much better in person. Luckily, no one knew this man’s name or else I probably would have drawn quite a bit of concern from adults regarding my interest in older men. Of course by older, I mean old enough to be my great-grandfather.

One day, my mother realized something wasn’t right with the name I was declaring everywhere, and decided to figure out who this man really was. Google was a brand new thing at the time, mind you. She quickly discovered my mistake and corrected me, as any good mother would. She didn’t do so without a few laughs and jokes first, but eventually we solved the mystery behind my first love’s identity. I often think of Orlando, and though he may be dating Katy Perry (really Katy—Orlando AND John Mayer?), I will always hold a fond memory of him in my mind. Sweet, Geoffrey.