Lessons Learned from ‘Clueless’

funny entertainment blog-Clueless

It’s hard to believe that 20 years ago, I discovered Clueless. From the moment Cher Horowitz graced the big screen in her plaid outfit, I was mesmerized. This fashionista, and her BFF Dionne, had it all. As a girl from a tiny town East Texas, I soaked up every ounce of this movie like it was my own personal glimpse inside a cool person’s world.

Fast forward to my senior year at Baylor University. I remember the day my “Film/Media” professor discussed an assignment that would be a big part of our semester grade. All we had to do was pick out a classic movie and explain how it had woven itself into the tapestry of our culture.

My fellow students began buzzing with calls of “dibs” on famous titles such as The Godfather and The Graduate. I remember two girls fighting over Casablanca. For a hot second I considered Star Wars, Dazed and Confused or Grease.

In the end, I chose Clueless.

It never occurred to me that Clueless couldn’t possibly be considered a masterpiece since it had only been out for three years. All I had to do was look no farther that sorority row to see the film’s effects on my generation’s vernacular and wardrobe choices. I effortlessly wrote my paper explaining how “the kids in America” these days are more independent, tech savvy, and health conscious. Most long for comfortable knee socks and a good pair of purple clogs. I had clear points with numerous examples.

And somehow, I received an “A” on the paper. The professor read it out loud to the class, praising me for my remarkable work!

Okay, so he didn’t really praise me. He sort of chastised me for not following the assignment, but felt important to grade me on my unique perspective. He admitted that Clueless had left its mark on the student body, but he highly doubted it would stand the test of time.

AS IF!

I wish I had a floppy disk drive to recover that paper so I could share it with you right now. I knew it was a classic then. And I still believe it’s a classic now.

Lessons Learned from Clueless


  1.  Helping people is fulfilling work.
  2. Be aware of stumbling into bad lighting while on a date.
  3. Paul Rudd is as timeless as the movie.
  4. Blaming an “evil male” is a great excuse for almost anything.
  5. It does not say RSVP on the Statue of Liberty.
  6. Mexico and El Salvador are two different places.
  7. Hamlet did not say, “To thine own self be true.”
  8. Billie Holiday is a woman.

Clueless Quotes I Still Recite

  1. As if.
  2. Whatever.
  3. I’m keepin’ it real.
  4. I do not wear polyester hair!
  5. I totally paused.
  6. That came out of nowhere.
  7. Project!
  8. He’s kind of a Baldwin.
  9. Do you prefer fashion victim or ensemblely challenged?
  10. They’re way existential.

Were you a huge fan of Clueless? Did you ever play Suck & Blow? Do you catch yourself singing, “rollin’ with the homies?” Do you have a desire to email my old professor with no message other than, “I TOLD YOU SO!” Is that just me?

Comments

46 Comments on "Lessons Learned from ‘Clueless’"

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Kristin
Kristin

Huge Clueless fan! My friend and I watched it relentlessly! I love watching it and seeing where my clothes, language, hair style came from! Love it! Your prof would definitely see it as a classic now!

Molly
Molly

Love it as much today as I did 20 years ago and “I’m buggin’ myself” is said with surprising (and delightful!) frequency in my household. Have you ever seen it dubbed in Spanish? I catch myself saying “lo que sea” daily.

Andrea
Andrea

I love Clueless!! I got both the movie on VHS and the soundtrack for Christmas my sophomore year in high school.

Another favorite line my BFF and I like to say: “She’s my friend because we both know what it’s like for people to be jealous of us.”

I must go home and watch this tonight!

Jackie
Jackie

Loved that movie – “I totally paused” is a regular part of my repertoire 🙂

Jennifer
Jennifer

My 12 year old has started watching this after getting sick of watching MEAN GIRLS 1200 times !! Cher totally rocked the mini better than Regina George.

Caitlin
Caitlin

I can tell you, as a college student at a major university about 10 years after your paper was written, we studied Clueless vernacular in a language studies class — I’m not buggin’. It’s legit art.

Katie A.
Katie A.

I love Clueless too! It never gets old. Bonus: It introduced me to Jane Austen (in a roundabout way, since it’s based on Emma)! Classic!

Tara

My best friend and I sing “Rollin’ with the homies” frequently since I am obsessed with a guy named Elton. My BFF, of course, calls him “El-in” the way Tai did in the movie. 😉

Tlyn
Tlyn

I watched Clueless EVERY single night as a “junior higher”! When I throw some clothes on and brush my hair, I always proclaim: “Not a total Betty, but a vast improvement”! LOL

Dara

As far as life principles go, the one that has stuck out to me most is that everything is negotiable. The thing I still quote to this day (mostly in my head) is “but THIS Is an Alaia!”

Babs
Babs

As a huge Jane Austen fan, I could not but LOVE this movie. I also liked “10 things I Hate About You, which was based on The Taming of the Shrew. I was much older than the target audience of both films, but loved them as much as any 16 year old out there! I still watch this movie at least once a year and if I happen to see it flipping channels I HAVE to Stop, Drop and Watch.

Babs
Babs

BTW, for real if you can find a way to retrieve that paper PLEASE post it…I would love to read it!

Kristin
Kristin

1. Cher’s house and Regina George’s house are the SAME house-at least on the outside. Seriously.

2. I worked at restaurant a few years ago in New York and Elton (in real life-Jeremy Sisto who is very nice BTW) would come in a lot. EVERYTIME I saw him I would sing “Rollin with the homies” in my head.

3. My favorite dating tip: Whenever a boy comes over you should always have something baking

Shelley
Shelley

Just last week I did ‘rollin with the homies’ with my toddler niece! We must pass this classic on to the next generation.

Marji
Marji

I adore this movie and think it often gets overlooked for its snappy writing and sharp wit. I saw it in the theaters when it was first released with a friend who wanted to see it, but I thought it would be kind of dumb. I learned my pre-judgement totally reeked, and it wasn’t imposter designer perfume!

My lunchtime workout class was just talking about Clueless today and how Stacey Dash never ages. One of my friends and I used to throw out, “it’s da bomb!” in regards to anything we agreed with. I still use “surfing the crimson wave” occasionally. Also, I randomly scream out “FREEWAY!” to myself when getting on a busy highway.

I can watch from beginning to end and quote right along with the characters in the same inflections. It doesn’t get tiresome, and even to this day Paul Rudd is the same dreamboat as he was then.

Would have loved to read your paper, Lincee! I’m sure it was a Betty.

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