1988-1990 New Kids on the Block had a great run at my house. You couldn’t go 5 minutes without hearing one of their cassette tapes blaring from our My First Sony, nor could your eyes escape the merchandise shrine I created in their honor. Of the 5 pubescent heart throbs, I gravitated to the “Bad Boy,” Donnie Wahlberg.
Young, brash and more “Boston-y” than beans or cream pie, Donnie rode a
tricycle motorcycle while sporting bandanas and a sneer. He didn’t want to be a teen idol. See, at his core Donnie was a loner, Dottie, a rebel.
Like many little girls who have no clue how life works, I envisioned becoming his girlfriend one day and changing his bad boy ways.
Unfortunately, as is youth, my love for Donald Wahlberg was fleeting. Much like the “Homeboy” tee-shirt Donnie made famous, our love was cut short. As the hormone stronghold of adolescence took over, I quickly moved past my NKOTB obsession and Donnie was quickly forgotten.
Years later, Mr. Wahlberg resurfaced in M. Night Sh*ttymovieman’s The Sixth Sense, as a murderous skinny weirdo wearing nothing but tightie whities. He was unrecognizable, but proved one thing, homeboy had some acting chops. In addition to a receding hairline, Donnie was apparently also hiding his Thespian tendencies underneath all those bandanas.
In the years since, Donnie has appeared in multiple movies and television projects. Sure, his buff (and fully haired) little brother Mark Wahlberg has gotten the majority of the press, but Donnie’s been consistently working since the late 90’s.
Speaking of the 1990’s, if you had to choose a woman who embodied the decade, one of the names that would first come to mind is Jenny McCarthy.
1994’s Playboy Playmate of the year was a comely blonde who refused to take herself seriously. MTV scooped Jenny up to co-host the quintessential 1990’s dating show, “Singled Out.” Her fart jokes and funny faces made McCarthy not only a novelty, but gave viewers the impression that she was someone they could, “get.”
But of course she wasn’t, the regular schmucks never had a chance with her. After McCarthy’s failed marriage to a professional athlete and a fizzled 5-year relationship with Jim Carrey, Jenny appeared on Howard Stern earlier this year single and out of love. In his infinite wisdom, Stern suggested that they hold a Dating Game for Jenny, stocked with men suitable for the beauty. McCarthy agreed to do it, and his crew began searching good-looking and well-monied men who would be willing to compete for Jenny’s love, on air.
As they began to finalize details, Jenny contacted Howard Stern’s executive producer, Gary Dell’Abate and put the kibosh on the game plans, citing the fact she had found a new love, but refused to give any details about the man.
Friday, US Weekly confirmed exclusively that Ms. McCarthy’s new dude is none other than my former imaginary flame, Donnie Wahlberg.
The two symbols of 1990’s nostalgia met back in March when Donnie was on “The Jenny McCarthy Show.” After an interview segment rife with smirks and double entendre, the two engaged in flirtations through social media and soon began dating.
The couple is currently, “having fun,” and spent the July 4th holiday together celebrating with Jonathan Knight and his boyfriend, Harley.
Yes, Harley really is the name of Jonathan Knight’s boyfriend. Obviously, Donnie’s not the only one in NKOTB that’s into riding Harleys, HEY-OOOOOOOOO. (crowd groans)
All kidding aside, how is it that Jordan Knight is the straight one of the famous Knight brothers from NKOTB? I mean really.
With those gold hoop earrings and that luscious layer of lip-gloss, the younger me was sure Jordan was top hat fancy. But no. Strong and soft-spoken Jonathan, with his smoldering good looks and endearing stage fright is the one off-limits to ladies. Leaving womankind the falsetto singing, stunt-queen Jordan as our consolation prize. Boo Hiss!
Well, at least Jordan DID give us this 1999 solo gem to Jazzercize to:
Anyburpingblondesofthe90’s, Congrats to Jenny McCarthy and Donnie from New Kids on the Block. You’re both famous and integral parts of my pop cultural upbringing, so naturally I’m rooting for y’all. May your relationship be made of “The Right Stuff,” and still be “Hanging Tough,” several years from now. What can I say Donnie? Though we never crossed paths in person, thanks to my vast catalogue of Teen Beat pin-up posters, “I’ll Be Loving You Forever.”