Nonfiction

IT’S NOT A PHASE MUM

21 March 2016

Dear nine-year-old me,

I know that you think Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen are the two most fascinating human beings to ever walk this earth. As Future You, however, I feel it is my responsibility to hit you with some hard truths. You know how you have spent pretty much every day of the past year telling Mum that this Olsen obsession is “Not just a phase?” Well, it definitely is a phase and one you will spend the next decade trying to live down.

Surely you can’t believe that you’ll have the energy to sustain such an intense girl crush forever? In the age of dial up internet, even downloading the MK&A newsletter wastes half an hour and your precious daily reserves of patience.  As does trying to interpret the text without the aid of the photos, which are just too much for your ‘vintage’ computer to handle. Yet because I know you so well, I am certain that this news will come as a terrible shock. So before we dismiss the Olsens from your life, let us reminisce.

It all began with an interview in Total Girl magazine, the under-12 Australian female’s bible. MK&A, aside from having, like, the cutest acronym ever, were a tweenage dream. They were shy, down to earth and blessed with all the qualities you could expect in mega-celebrities (especially ones with a company in their names at the mere age of six).

Once those piercing blue Olsen eyes had ensnared you, it was all too easy for their merchandising empire to take a hold of your purse. Farrago readers, did you know that the Olsen twins had a record deal? No? But their song ‘Ice Cream Baby’ was so sweet! From books to VHS movies, clothes to ridiculously miniscule handbags, you saw it, you needed it and you got it. MK&A corrupted your innocence and transformed you into a tiny materialistic beast. And this, dear me, is why I must burst your Olsen bubble. You are ridiculous and everyone except you knows it.

The more I reflect, the more I realise that you have a lot of human suffering to answer for. To those around you, you were the cause of many peals of fake laughter, pained nods and concealed eye rolls. Please, little me, go give your mum a thankful hug and indulge your friends with a conversation involving something they actually care about. But most of all, you need to apologise to your teacher Mr Butler. You knew that he believed pet lizards and bugs to be an integral part of the classroom. Despite this, you forced him to spend hours reading about what colour Mary-Kate likes to paint her toenails – a task he endured with minimal complaints. Perhaps you should find him a medal of some kind.

The term ‘fangirl’ – describing those who cross the line from healthy fandom to near-indecent obsession – has not yet gained popular usage in your time. However, you fit the definition to the millimetre. You may have been wondering why I chose this precise time to reach out to my nine-year-old self. The truth is that you are about to do something terrible.

Soon, your friend will casually mention that she is in possession of Mary-Kate and Ashley branded toothpaste. “Can I buy it off you?” you’ll enquire. “I’ll pay any price!” But alas, the aforementioned toothpaste has already been thrown out and is on its way to the nearest tip. “Which tip?” you’ll ask, horrifying everyone within earshot. “Maybe I can still find the tube.”

Yes. The empty tube. Of toothpaste. In a tip. This is why your obsession must end! The lengths you will go to acquire an MK&A branded toothpaste are baffling. You are slowly morphing into the kind of person with a genuine desire to pick through household waste. Unless you are okay with that, things have got to change.

 

Here’s the deal:

– The Olsen-esque American accent you affect for days at a time is NOT as convincing as you think it is.

– Changing your name from Ashleigh to Ashley will NOT get you any closer to becoming the third Olsen. She already exists and her name is Elizabeth. She was even in an Avengers movie.

– Writing only Olsen-related stories for a full year of English class will NOT improve your marks.

– Your genuine Mary-Kate and Ashley Barbie dolls are NOT as cute or realistic as you think they are. They are creepy.

– Despite your grand plans, you will NOT move to New York at age sixteen, meet the Olsens or become their most trusted friend.

 

Currently, the Olsen twins are your role models for all the wrong reasons. However, I should let you know that they also deserve your respect for reasons you are still too young to understand. Soon, Mary-Kate will have a very public breakdown and her eating disorder will spread across every possible front page.

But here’s the admirable thing: she will get better. Her sister will stand by her and despite the pressure of the tabloids and fame, MK will come out stronger. Rehab is a wonderful thing.

Don’t worry nine-year-old me, in our future MK is still successful and married to the brother of former French President Nicolas Sarkozy. Though you won’t approve of the décor for the ceremony. I read that the venue was mainly decorated with bowls of cigarettes.

Now that I’ve shattered your universe, I need you to smile through the tears and believe Future You when I tell you that you’re going to be just fine. The Olsen twins are still skulking around in the public eye – often from behind giant sunglasses.  And besides, you documented your Olsen phase so well. Gems such as the poem opposite will never fade.

They are timeless words.

Good luck,

Future You xx


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