I'm always thinking about the kind of woman I want to be. So, it's only natural that I keep a running list of people that inspire me to greatness. Off the top of my head, this roster includes the likes of Jennifer Lawrence, Michelle Obama, Judge Judy (who takes bologna from positively no one), and any woman I see wearing platform heels at 8 a.m. But, in reflecting on the characteristics and achievements of these women, I can't neglect the fact that there's also a venerable roll call of women who have shaped me into the ambitious, kind-of-weird person I am today. Yes, I'm referring to people like teachers, my female family members, and mentors, but I'm also entirely referring to Donna Joe (D.J.) Tanner, the big sister and '80s/'90s fashion icon of Full House.
Though D.J.'s character was actually played by a girl named Candace Cameron Bure, it was the fictional D.J. that truly helped shape the nature of my social and romantic decisions, as well as the makings of my hairstyles and favorite outfits. She was like a virtual teen magazine, playing out all the fashion advice and family scenarios I could ever need help with. With D.J. around, I didn't need the likes of Tiger Beat, though I continued purchasing the mag for the pull-out full-size posters of Jonathan Taylor Thomas it offered (duh). And since the 26th anniversary of Full House is but a few weeks away, I wanted to take a moment to acknowledge D.J. for providing some of the most heart-warming and entertaining moments on television, but also for being an absolute boss when it came to life, love, and leggings.
So, D.J., in a nutshell:
Thank you for keeping scrunchies around until 1994. Thank you for keeping big, puffy bangs until you got to high school. Thank you for your wardrobe of blazers, oversized shirts, and loafers that are now part and parcel of some of my favorite menswear-inspired looks. Thank you for keeping posters of unattainable, famous boyfriends on your bedroom wall — it makes me feel better about my relentless crushes on the likes of RyGos and Pharrell. Thank you for making me believe that it's possible to win concert tickets from one of those phone-in radio contests. Thank you for dating a guy named Viper, which taught me that I should never date a guy named Viper. Finally, thank you for still being IRL best friends with Kimmy Gibbler and Instagramming the highlights of your friendship on the regular. It gives me hope for everlasting comraderie — and, that one day, Instagram will read as a yearbook of the best '80s personalities.