Every time I see Liv Tyler, I think, that could have been my kid!
Facebook can be one hell of a way to keep up with old friends. Another of the interesting aspects it provides is in allowing us to see what the people of our past look like today, whether we keep up with them or not. Funny how an old lover’s photo might pop up out of nowhere — especially when that old lover turned out to be a very famous person.
So, there I was, scrolling through my news feed, and lo and behold I found myself riveted by a truly stunning photograph of what appeared to be an old native American woman, casually bedazzled in tribal attire. Her every crag and wrinkle told a story. She was, in her way, quite lovely — a bit of a hippie, in fact — and the shock of wiry silver hair that accented one of the most weathered faces I’d ever seen only served to bring more character to this unique portrait. All I knew was that it was worth clicking on and having a closer look.
But when I looked closer, I realized she was in fact not even a woman — she was rock star Steven Tyler, the lead singer of Aerosmith, and my former lover.
Dude seriously looks like a lady now.
Now, when I say 'my former lover' I am talking about the distant past way before all those crags and wrinkles had a chance to form, ages before that silver shock of hair could even reach that level of melanin depletion. There was a really cute guy who was just starting out with his band, and there was me, an even younger girl who was just beginning her sexual adventures one summer day, about a zillion years ago.
We met on a dock by a boathouse, on an island, during summer vacation. I’d go as far as to say our little experience together was comparable to what people imagine the reality behind the story in the film Dirty Dancing to be like.
Except, unlike the film, we really were dirty, and we did way more than dance.
He was the cutest thing in the world. Gorgeous face, long, slim physique. He had the whole world of craziness ahead of him, and in those early days — before fame ran him through the shoots and ladders of what would be his very intense life as one of the greatest rock singers of all time — he was actually super nice, a total sweetie-pie. I have nothing but fond memories of him. He was kind, beautiful, considerate and an awesome sexual partner, even at that young age.
Let's just put it this way, he was my first oral sex experience — both ways. So yeah, that famous mouth of his? I've got a very special memory of those lips, that is for certain. As for my lips, I had a whole lotta young Steven Tyler to deal with, and it was certainly a memorable experience — all good, all good!
But the really weird part was looking at that photo. Yes, Steven is older than me, but wow — if he looks like that now, what the heck do I look like? I mean, I remember a smooth young man who had just penned his first hit record, 'Dream On.' So, who was this shaman-woman-person that he’d morphed into? It’s funny, every time I see Liv Tyler, I think, that could have been my kid!
I imagine he’s one of those rock dudes who went through women like water.
Thankfully, I was one of the early ones before all the drugs came in to warp and enhance the experience. Would he recognize me today? I doubt it. Would he remember me from that boathouse so long, long ago? Probably not, but that’s OK, too. I don’t need to be remembered, nor do I expect to be.
What is really interesting to me about it all is that if we’re fortunate enough to live to be old, we become these portraits of intensity. Where our beauty may not read as youthful and elastic as it once was, our faces do tell the stories of our lives.
Once, there was a young Steven Tyler and a young Dori Hartley. Their paths would cross for a short summer encounter and then those paths would veer into entirely new worlds, where the only thing they’d have in common is a thread of a memory.
So, for the sake of kiss and tell: Was he beautiful? Yes. In every department.
Is he still beautiful? Absolutely. And though his face is a map of wrinkles, folds, shadows and older flesh — one of those wrinkles has my name on it. And it works both ways, doesn’t it? Because even though it can’t be seen with the human eye, I too have an invisible tattoo somewhere on my body that says, "Steven Tyler was here."