Ms. Perky: Patrick Verona. I see we’re making our visits a weekly ritual.
Patrick: Only so we can have these moments together. Should I, uh, hit the lights?
Ms. Perky: Oh, very clever, kangaroo boy.
I watched 10 Things I Hate About You this weekend and it hit me like the schoolbus that fractured Regina George’s spine how much Patrick Verona ruined my life. I mean, seriously! This dude. This dude with an accent asking if a girl has beer-flavored nipples (a phrase that I have obviously repeated a gazillion times), I can’t even. Here was Heath Ledger with his brown curly hair and 100-watt smile swooned teenagers worldwide and helped launch his career, Julia Stiles’ and Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s.
What was Patrick Verona’s appeal that continues to ruin us 15 years after the movie premiered? A bad boy that isn’t a bad boy but a good guy with feelings and a sense of humor is every girl’s dream if you’ve turned on the TV recently. It sells. It creates an unrealistic fantasy for girls that Bobby, the kid that sits next to her in English class could be the love of her life. I’m not going to complain about that. I am a sucker for unrealistic fantasies and kisses in the rain and Lloyd Dobler with a speaker over his head with one of my favorite Beatles’ songs. I eat that shit up with Nutella.
Kat: You are amazingly self-assured, has anyone ever told you that?
Patrick: I tell myself that every day, actually.
Give me a confident romantic interest or give me death! Patrick had a dark aura surrounding him and every girl has this weird nesting thing where they think they can change a guy to bring him to what their definition of “Good guy” is. Fortunately for us, Katarina Stratford showed us that she doesn’t need to change the guy but accept his weirdness like he accepted hers and go out on awesome weird paintball dates. It’s not every day you’ll meet a girl that will flash someone to get out of detention.
Patrick: So you disappoint them from the start and then you’re covered, right?
Kat: Something like that.
Patrick: Then you screwed up!
Patrick: You never disappointed me.
How can you not melt for this human being?! He’s charming, he’s handsome, he knows how to sing (you’re just too good to be trueeeee, I can’t take my eyes off of yoooou – gets me every time) he’s got a sense of humor and he’s a pretty great friend. Underneath that usual cloud of smoke, there is a guy that is fucking amazing.
Patrick: See, first of all, Joey is not half the man you are. Secondly, don’t let anyone, ever, make you feel like you don’t deserve what you want. Go for it!
And he’ll take care of you when you’re drunk.
Kat Stratford: [drunk. Leans in close to Patrick] Hey… your eyes have a little green in them.
[Patrick smiles momentarily, then Kat vomits at his feet]
Sure. He’ll do something that will make you hate him but you won’t know how to handle how you feel because he’s awesome but he’s somewhat of a douche because he doesn’t know how to handle himself either. He’ll be like a lovesick puppy watching you read a poem out loud and break into tears because you don’t want to hate him but you feel like you have to.
At the end of the day, we’re all in this mess together and we’re all figuring out where our place is in the world. But you Patrick, ruined my life and ruined my friends’ lives because after all the clusterfucky mess, we’re waiting for someone to buy us a guitar.
Kat: You can’t just buy me a guitar every time you screw up, you know?
Patrick: Yeah, I know. But then, you know, there’s always drums, and bass, and maybe even one day a tambourine.
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