During 10th and 11th grade, I lived with my mother and stepdad in a 3-bedroom apartment. It was actually part of a very large house in downtown Winona. From there, it was a mere 2-block walk to Midtown Foods where we went to rent videos. Midtown was cool in that me or any of my siblings could go there on our own and pick a movie or two out. We merely had to sign the rental contract. Some of the movies they rented which I had no interest in were "Top Gun" and "The Secret of My Success".
Five blocks further, there was another place called Video Hits which had a greater selection, but wound up being shut down because they were renting out porn. There were two consecutive doorways to get to that section. The first led to science fiction, which I frequented, and a few steps past that was the XXX section. Some might've saw me heading to sci-fi and think I was going to check out porn, but it was merely to see what they had for Star Wars-type films; "Star Whores" would have to wait.
A number of years earlier, my mother took us boys to a barbershop called Farrell's. Playboy magazines were liberally strewn throughout the shop. Though curious, I never picked up an issue while my much younger brother, Matt, had no such hesitations.
A couple of times, getting home from school, I noticed that my mom had locked the front door. She was supposed to have left it unlocked when she left home after eating lunch. Rather than wait around, I headed to the side of the house where my bedroom was located and was able to finagle the window open and sneak in that way.
My four younger siblings visited on the weekends while I had the week to myself. My bedroom was sweet in that the space under the door was extra wide on one corner. It allowed me, when I laid on the floor, to see everyone that was sitting on the living room couch watching TV. One night in October of 1987, I watched as they celebrated the Minnesota Twins' victory in Game One of the World Series. I was really into the Beatles then and explicitly remember listening to "Within You Without You" laying there one evening. Sometimes the light would shine onto me and Matt would say, "I know you're looking under there".
At the place where he lived, if you got on top of the couch in the TV room, you could see into his bedroom. He liked listening to CD's back then on his hi-tech stereo. He had stuff by Harry Connick, Jr, Joey Lawrence, Eddie Murphy, and a disc that played a Thunderstorm for an hour.
For a number of weeks, my sister came over after school and we watched shows like "Hollywood Squares" and "Double Dare" while she munched on a small bag of Cheetos.
George Michael's "Faith" was extremely popular at the time and my sister was a big fan of it. Who wasn't?
Since I only saw them on the weekend, I liked to have fun with my brothers. On a couple of occasions, when they went to the movies and I elected to stay home, I put one of their 10-inch action-figure wrestlers on the top of the door that led into our living room.
The first person who walked in would get a surprise. I staked out a spot to watch in the kitchen as magic time approached. One time, my mom came in first. Yeesh! But on another, I got my brother, Matt. He response was swift. He went straight into my bedroom and broke my Luke Skywalker Dagobah glass. As he came back out into the living room, I said, "You're gonna have to pay for that".
I especially enjoyed it when my mother and stepdad would go out of town. They typically left me with five or ten bucks and stocked the fridge with my two favorite foods, Little Debbie Zebra Cakes and Totino's Pizza. It was great having the whole place to myself, not least because it allowed me to watch movies in complete quiet and darkness. A couple of the films I enjoyed during this time were "Silver Bullet" and "Christine". Late at night was when the real magic happened as we had HBO and Showtime; translation: I got to watch soft porn.