I have a weird connection to Dean Cain. When I was senior at Princeton High School in 1987, I befriended a group of Princeton University seniors who lived at 53 Little Hall. There were a lot of fringe benefits to this for me, as it gave me the opportunity to enjoy the weekend party life with a bunch of co-eds. The guy I was closest to was dating Brooke Shields’ roommate, and Brooke Shields was dating Dean Cain.
At the time, Dean Cain was a big deal. In 1987, Cain established a Princeton football season record by intercepting 12 passes as their starting free safety. I know I attended at least a couple of those games.
I did not know it at the time, but Dean Cain went to Santa Monica High School (with Charlie Sheen and Rob Lowe). In 1989, I moved to Los Angeles and started attending Santa Monica College.
Of course, Dean Cain also was living in Los Angeles at this time and he was beginning to get small parts and do commercials. In 1993, after I had returned to the east coast, Dean got his big break when he was cast in Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. I was pretty excited for him even though I doubt he would have known my name. I tried watching the show, but I’m just not into that kind of programming. I know a lot of people watched it and I’ve heard mostly positive things about its entertainment value. And that’s really all I knew about Dean Cain. The Superman show went off the air in the late-1990’s and I gradually forgot that it (or Dean) had ever existed.
But then I found out about this:
One day after briefing the press in an attempt to calm nerves about the spread of the new coronavirus, President Donald Trump spent 45 minutes talking to the lead actors of a low-budget conservative play about the so-called Deep State.
Phelim McAleer, the playwright behind the play FBI Lovebirds: Undercovers, told The Daily Beast that the meeting with Trump had originally been scheduled for just 15 minutes but went 30 minutes longer than that.
“We went for a 15-minute meeting that took 45 minutes,” McAleer said. “We were there for 45 minutes in the Oval Office, and he loves it, he loves the play.”
I was curious, so I read on. It was a decision I instantly regretted for several reasons.
Trump hasn’t seen the play, according to McAleer, but praised its concept: a script based entirely on congressional testimony and the text messages between former FBI agent Peter Strzok and former FBI lawyer Lisa Page, who discussed the FBI’s investigation into Trump’s campaign and Russia while having an affair. The play’s leads—Superman actor Dean Cain and former Buffy the Vampire Slayer actress Kristy Swanson—also attended the White House meeting.
It’s funny what’s happened this week. I remember watching the U.S. Olympic Hockey Team beat the Soviets in Lake Placid when I was tens years old. I was in some timeshare condo my parents owned down in the Sea Pines Plantation on Hilton Head Island. I’m pretty sure I remember how I felt and some of the details because I witnessed the event in an unusual setting rather than in my living room at home. In any case, it was a precious thing of mine, and it was largely ruined by this:
If he had to do it again, hockey legend Mike Eruzione said, he would not put on the red “Keep America Great” hat.
He and his teammates from the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey squad hadn’t meant to make a grand political statement when they appeared onstage as President Trump’s surprise guests at a campaign rally in Las Vegas on Friday. They happened to be in town to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the “Miracle on Ice” — their shocking upset of the Soviet Union en route to the gold medal, perhaps the most unifying moment in American sports history — when they got a call from Trump’s campaign inviting them to a private photo line with the president.
The next thing they knew, Eruzione said, Trump was introducing them at the rally and a campaign aide was handing them the caps as they took the stage. Four of the former players chose not to wear them — but 10 others did, prompting a huge backlash on social media from Trump’s critics, who view the distinctive red campaign hats as sharply politicized symbols of hate, racism and xenophobia.
I’m glad Mike Eruzione regrets it because he shat all over this boy’s childhood memory. And that’s kind of what Dean Cain is doing to my fond recollections of hanging out in the periphery of his social scene when I was a high school senior.
On Valentine’s Day, I celebrated my father’s 87th birthday. I told him that it bothered me that he was born the year that Hitler came to power and still had to witness the bullshit white supremacy we’re getting from the Trump administration (Stephen Miller is another graduate of Santa Monica High School).
Sometimes it feels like we’ve all lived too long. But, that’s not really it. What’s actually going on is that Trump and Trumpism are ruining everything we cherish.