I was gone for most of the day on Saturday and when I came home I had only about five minutes to freshen up (read: put on stretchy pants) and pour out some sour watermelon candies because the Art Society was coming over for a Harry Potter 7 marathon. And in the midst of this rushing Katie said to me, "We haven't talked about Gil yet." To which I replied, "Gil? Like Gil, Gil?" (as if there is any other) and she said, "Yes. He died."
What I wanted to do was have a good cry, because 1.) how tragic, and 2.) wo to my lost youth! But instead I went and emptied the trash in my bathroom because what else are you supposed to do when you have guests coming over and you've just found out that your very first movie crush has died. There was no time for the depths of despair.
I was trying to explain to an Institute student why it's so sad. I was trying to come up with a touchstone of this generation to compare it to. Someone who embodied every thirteen year old girl's ideal of the perfect guy. And I just don't think one exists. Gilbert Blythe had everything a girl could want. He was supportive, attentive, flirty, smart, ambitious, and was cute and looked great in a suit.
I'm calling for a International Day of Mourning. And, as with all things in life, we will ask the question: What would Anne Shirley do? Anne would spend a lot of time crying up in her room. And then Marilla would come in and tell her to buck up. So she would wash her face and put on a simple dress that she would look bewitching in (puff sleeves are only for special occasions like Christmas concerts) and take to the woods to collect wild flowers that she would keep in a basket she fashioned out of reeds and ferns. This would be followed by a few verses of poetry recited into the breeze then a restorative cry while lying on a soft bed of moss. Naturally she would give that bed of moss a name like The Sacred Hollow of Remembrance and she would vow to return to it every year in his memory.
This all seems appropriate. So meet me at the Lake of Shining Waters for your black arm band and have your poem ready. And until then, watch this (like you haven't watched this scene a million times):