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M M M My Sharona... M M M My real estate agent?
March 22, 2005 11:49 AM   Subscribe

M M M My Sharona... M M M My real estate agent? Sharona Alperin was only 17 when she inspired the Knack's 1979 hit single "My Sharona." Now she sells real estate in Los Angeles...On the flip side of lyrical fame, 16-year-old Brenda Spencer inspired another set of lyrics in 1979 -- the Boomtown Rats' haunting song "I Don't Like Mondays" -- which chronicled Spencer's slaying of eight school children and a principal at an elementary school near her San Diego, CA-area home. It's not an urban legend: Spencer told a reporter who called her during the 6 1/2 -hour siege that she opened fire because, "I don't like Mondays. This livens up the day." Spencer reminds us today that schoolyard shootings are not a new phenomenon. Now 42, Brenda is serving a 25-year sentence and is up for parole soon...
posted by Mr Pointy (48 comments total)

 
I can't believe these two stories haven't had proper posts about them yet. Good post!
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 11:52 AM on March 22, 2005


Haven't checked this out yet, looks cool, but coincidence that it follows a "Girls With Guns" post? Extraordinary...
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 11:53 AM on March 22, 2005


D'oh. Can't tell you how many times I proofed that but still... Should have said "Spencer's shooting" of eight children. The kids survived. The principal and a custodian did not.

Eh, it's my first post. I'll do better next time :-I
posted by Mr Pointy at 11:56 AM on March 22, 2005


To tie the two posts together with another 80's, I give you Mr. Tommy Shaw...
posted by jonmc at 11:57 AM on March 22, 2005


The song makes her sound like a little nympho groupie or something.
posted by thirteenkiller at 12:07 PM on March 22, 2005


Sharona tells that "My Sharona has had an impact on my ability to understand the entertainers mind, there's something simpatico. You've got to care to the n'th degree. You can't drop the ball for one minute."

Running down the length of my thighs, Sharona
Never gonna stop, give it up. Such a dirty mind.
Always get it up for the touch
of the younger kind.

posted by Swampjazz! at 12:13 PM on March 22, 2005


Swampjazz, sounds like she held onto those balls pretty good.
posted by Robot Johnny at 12:34 PM on March 22, 2005


what a post! I love Sharona!
posted by matteo at 12:39 PM on March 22, 2005


I think it would be cool to be the inspiration for a fictional character or piece of music or the like - although, naturally, not in the way that Brenda Spencer did, and not even in the way that Sharona Alperin did, because I don't like that song (okay, so I'm too picky and mouthy to be anyone's muse). It's probably the closest anyone ever comes to seeing themselves as another sees them.
posted by orange swan at 12:55 PM on March 22, 2005


Excellent post, Mr Pointy, and very topical - proof that *newsfilter* can be done well and creatively. Bravo!
posted by madamjujujive at 12:59 PM on March 22, 2005


and then there's the story behind the Pumpkins song "starla" - turns out Billy misheard the girl's name, and it's Darla, not Starla...
posted by salad spork at 1:06 PM on March 22, 2005


i second the madam. outstanding post.
posted by three blind mice at 1:10 PM on March 22, 2005


I'm confused about the parole. According to the snopes article, she was sentenced to 25 years at the age of 16. She's 42 now, which means her time should be up, period, soon, parole or no. Once you have served a sentence, they can't decide to keep you in longer, right?
posted by spicynuts at 1:17 PM on March 22, 2005


Spicynuts is correct. I mischaracterized Spencer's sentence; she was sentenced to 25-years-to-life.

She will remain incarcerated until the parole board sees fit to release her.
posted by Mr Pointy at 1:27 PM on March 22, 2005


BIG Boomtown Rats fan. "Mary of the Fourth Form" was a kick ass song.
posted by tkchrist at 1:29 PM on March 22, 2005


Wow, great post!
posted by mkultra at 1:29 PM on March 22, 2005


"At a 2001 parole hearing, Spencer claimed she had been on drugs and alcohol and was hallucinating – shooting at "commandos storming her house".

"I live with the unbearable pain every day of knowing that I was responsible for the death of two people and caused many others physical and additional pain and suffering, but I'm not a murderer," she said."


I beg to differ, you are a murderer.

"I'm confused about the parole. According to the snopes article, she was sentenced to 25 years at the age of 16. She's 42 now, which means her time should be up, period, soon, parole or no. Once you have served a sentence, they can't decide to keep you in longer, right?"

She was actually sentenced to 25 years to life. She became eligible for parole in 2001.
posted by Juicylicious at 1:33 PM on March 22, 2005


Fun Doug "The Knack" Fieger bit o' trivia: his brother is Jack Kevorkian's lawyer.
posted by scody at 1:53 PM on March 22, 2005


Sharona tells that "My Sharona has had an impact on my ability to understand the entertainers mind, there's something simpatico. You've got to care to the n'th degree. You can't drop the ball for one minute."

I read that myself and thought it was one of those amazing bits of obsfucated marketing speak worth saving for something. Do people actually talk this way?
posted by KirkJobSluder at 2:02 PM on March 22, 2005


I'm sure I've seen 1482 Blue Jay in a photo spread or on a video or two.

Not that I look at those kind of photo spreads or videos.

Can you imagine the commisions when you're regularly selling houses at that price? She must be doing better than any members of The Knack. For the dignity of forgotten rock stars everywhere, I hope Doug Fieger at least has better hair than Jeffrey.
posted by TimTypeZed at 2:05 PM on March 22, 2005


I was amused by the fact that it doesn't seem to mean . . . anything at all, too, KirkJobSluder. On the other hand, what's she going to say? "My vast experience with how underage girls turn on rock stars makes me the perfect person to find you a home!"
posted by kyrademon at 2:08 PM on March 22, 2005


Forced irreverence when giving a motive is the worst quality a killer can have. Brenda Spencer didn't like mondays. Arthur Shawcross said he was "taking care of business."

I don't care for Bachman-Turner Overdrive, but it's still cooler to reference BTO than "Garfield." Brenda Spencer, you are lamer than the Genesee River Killer.
posted by Mayor Curley at 2:12 PM on March 22, 2005


I beg to differ, you are a murderer.

You spend your entire life, day after day, without murdering a single person. Then you slip up just one time, and they never let you hear the end of it.
posted by rcade at 2:14 PM on March 22, 2005


I think this post is a good example of "topical" as opposed to "newsflter". Nicely done, thanks.
posted by cali at 2:28 PM on March 22, 2005


This is a wonderful post. I've always wondered what the story was behind "I don't like Mondays".
posted by fossil_human at 2:40 PM on March 22, 2005


rcade, are you writing a song for the thread or telling us why you would not slip up murdering one time.

[bangs head] the song "day after day" stuck in head now.
[reads thread's title] "MMMMy Sharona..." Ahhh, bettter.
posted by thomcatspike at 2:52 PM on March 22, 2005


What??? Nobody complaining about the misused ellipsis and double-hyphens? What is wrong with you people today?
: )
posted by spock at 4:39 PM on March 22, 2005


Don't you mean misused ellipses and double hyphens?

Yeah, let's hear it for English majors!

Wheeee!

Sigh...

posted by naomi at 5:14 PM on March 22, 2005


The scene of Spencer's crime, Cleveland Elementary School in San Carlos, is up for lease.
posted by redneck_zionist at 5:21 PM on March 22, 2005


thanks for this: I Don't Like Mondays was such a big deal when i was in highschool. Much more important than My Sharona : >

"and the silicon chip inside her head got switched to overload..."
posted by amberglow at 5:35 PM on March 22, 2005


Oh that's awesome, redneck_zionist...

Now, who wants to start an indoor paintball arena?
posted by id at 5:35 PM on March 22, 2005


Don't care about the Rats song -- but the Sharona info is wonderful! I have always loved that song, from the first time I heard it on KMET (or was it KLOS)? And knowing about Feiger and his bro -- man, does that make sense -- genetics are powerful, eh?

Much obliged for the fun links!
posted by davidmsc at 5:58 PM on March 22, 2005


You spend your entire life, day after day, without murdering a single person. Then you slip up just one time, and they never let you hear the end of it.

rcade, are you writing a song for the thread or telling us why you would not slip up murdering one time.


He's paraphrasing a joke. Goatfucker.

That's the original punchline...I'm not calling you a goatfucker.
posted by graventy at 5:59 PM on March 22, 2005


On topic, awesome post. Man, My Sharona is a dirty song.
posted by graventy at 6:00 PM on March 22, 2005


The Chipmunks' My Sharona cut the Knack's to shreds.
posted by jfuller at 6:06 PM on March 22, 2005


Bravo on the post, this was interesting. I ended up doing a Google for Brenda, to find a picture of what a child looks like after 30 years in prison. No luck on that.

But, I did find a ton of websites where people are tying the mistreatment of animals to murder or some such behavior. Our little Brenda was not nice.

Who knew?
posted by fluffycreature at 6:17 PM on March 22, 2005


I ended up doing a Google for Brenda, to find a picture of what a child looks like after 30 years in prison. No luck on that.

This page has a couple of pictures of the older Spencer. It's not pretty. Apparently prison culture is big on mullets.

A news story quoted on the page reveals that "Buell said one child who was enrolled at [her] center was the offspring of Brenda Spencer's father, Wallace, and his present wife, who was Brenda Spencer's 17-year-old cellmate when she was being held at Juvenile Hall." Nice to see he's gotten on with his life.
posted by Aster at 8:07 PM on March 22, 2005


Heloísa Eneida Menezes Paes Pinto better known as the girl from Ipanema.
posted by euphorb at 8:48 PM on March 22, 2005


Buell said one child who was enrolled at [her] center was the offspring of Brenda Spencer's father, Wallace, and his present wife, who was Brenda Spencer's 17-year-old cellmate when she was being held at Juvenile Hall." Nice to see he's gotten on with his life.

If this is true, it makes me take her claims of his sexual abuse a bit more seriously.

I'd read about this story many times, but this thread convinced me to download the song. Catchy.
posted by IshmaelGraves at 10:10 PM on March 22, 2005


How timely; The Outstanding Contribution to Music Award will be presented to the original Boomtown Rat, Sir Bob Geldof at The BRITs25. Sir Bob natirally played "I don't like Mondays" after accepting his award, as I watched I wondered which school killing it was that inspired it. Now I know, without having to google myself. :)
posted by dabitch at 11:14 PM on March 22, 2005


euphorb, wow great link and her sweet sixteen photo makes it pretty clear where that "aaah" comes from, so adorable.
posted by dabitch at 11:21 PM on March 22, 2005


I'm amazed to discover someone's actually hosting a .wav of this piece of Carter-era history.
Americans are mostly cool, mostly cool
But now we're really startin' to fry- atollah!
And you know if you were here, you were here,
We'd hit you in the face with a pie- atollah!
posted by George_Spiggott at 11:52 PM on March 22, 2005


Despite being a well constructed post I'm not happy Mr Pointy. That fucking song My Sharona has been playing in my goddamned head all day! Gaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!
I thought I had got over it 20 years ago.
"Nurse!! Bring my lithium this instant!!"
posted by peacay at 12:17 AM on March 23, 2005


Peggy Sue, Peggy Sue - pretty pretty pretty pretty Peggy Sue
oh Peggy - my Peggy Sue
oh well, I love you gal and I need you Peggy Sue

I love you Peggy Sue - with a love so rare and true
oh Peggy - my Peggy Sue
well I love you gal - I want you Peggy Sue


Here she is!
posted by taz at 12:44 AM on March 23, 2005


And let's not forget Toto's Rosanna.
posted by postmodernmillie at 1:01 AM on March 23, 2005


"Something," "Layla," and "Wonderful Tonight" are all about Patti Boyd, who was married to George Harrison and Eric Clapton and is now a photographer. Harrison and Clapton were best friends when Boyd got involved with Clapton, and "Layla" is about his conflicted feelings. The title comes from the Middle Eastern legend of Layli and Madjnun.

Man, My Sharona is a dirty song

Not as dirty as "Good Girls Don't."
posted by kirkaracha at 6:30 AM on March 23, 2005


I wonder how Mrs. Meyer feels about her husband's fame for "Filling up the basket" of a young Al Yankovic.
posted by Cookiebastard at 8:02 AM on March 24, 2005


Patti Boyd ought to conduct seminars on how to do whatever it was that she did. Man.
posted by orange swan at 9:06 AM on March 25, 2005


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