When I was 9 I had the biggest crush on Zac Efron. Admittedly it was more like a superficial infatuation as apposed to a genuine attraction to him as a person (or his character) but nevertheless I crushed hard. The idea of a guy who could both simultaneously sing and play basketball whilst also dancing, was weirdly appealing to a 9 year old me. Even despite the complete lack of practicality of such things. (As a 13 year old I am now able to distinguish how stupid this would be applied to a real life game scenario. Nine year old me didn't. 9 year old me was what some would call a fantasist.)
Troy Bolton was hot. He could sing, he could dance and he could play basketball. 4 amazing qualities nine year old me couldn't resist about this fictional Caucasian male. There was no doubt in my mind that Troy was put on this Earth specifically to swoop me off my feet and confess his undying love to me through the medium of theatrical prose and song. It had never crossed my mind that perhaps Troy Bolton was just a character. To me Zac Efron and Troy Bolton were one. Like a once unified Pangea prior to its continental drift. Gabriella on the other hand was simply just there. There merely to fill my place whilst Troy found a way to track me down. Their dynamic, however spectacular it was, was always going to be sub par compared to what Troy and I could have.
Eventually my infatuation had assumed the form of a stable obsession. I had somehow manged to
Troy Bolton still remained in the position of my exemplar male. He was what the male species was designed to be in the mind of a vocally self repressed nine year old. Except when they were replicating him, they screwed with the genetics and ruined everything. (They had one job. One job!!) I imagined that one day he'd appear wearing a red jersey, singing the lyrics of a Whitney Houston song to me whilst he effortlessly carried me away into the sunset. When I say imagined, I mean consistently dreamt. It was bad. Like 'vicious wildfire spreading rapidly through an extremely populated town' bad Especially now that I realize how illegal that is and how morally wrong it would be to dump a perfectly suitable age appropriate teen in the pursuit of a 9 year old girl.
Troy never did find me and after a while I forgot about him. It was like the prepubescent equivalent to an intense break up. Initially I was devastated, but after ploughing my way through collections of unhealthy food and developing multiple new obsession, he was nothing but a memory.