It started with Bobby Sherman and David Cassidy, then continued through the years with guys like Patrick Swayze and Keanu Reeves, and lives on with George Clooney and Channing Tatum.
The celebrity crush, that is. Those are some of mine. Of course, when I was 10 and Bobby Sherman was on "Here Come The Brides," my unshakeable belief was I would marry him one day. Through the years, I thankfully grew a bit wiser and knew wedding bells weren't going to be ringing for me and one of my famous favorites, but it is still fun to crush on stars, just a little.
Getting to actually first interview then meet David Cassidy in 2011 will be a highlight of my life but in reality, these crushes will always be from afar.
My newest crush is someone most others won't even know. Heck, some won't consider him a celebrity. But to me, this guy embodies so many fine qualities, I cannot help be a bit smitten by him.
His name is Jackson Galaxy. OK: Go ahead and say "who???"
Jackson is the host of Animal Planet's "My Cat From Hell." He is a cat behaviorist who visits homes in order to help families deal with felines who might be causing some sort of trouble. He gained his interest in helping cats through work at an animal shelter many years back.
This past Saturday morning, downing my third cup of coffee while trying to fire myself up to go to work, I watched several episodes of "My Cat From Hell" and was thoroughly impressed. Jackson works wonders in these visits, but as he himself said, it's often the humans who need to change in order to bring their scratching, biting, wailing cats to peacefulness.
Jackson is tall, bald and heavily tattooed. In addition to his work with cats, he's a musician so it's only fitting he carries a guitar case filled with cat toys and treats when he arrives at the troubled felines' homes.
He looks tough, this Jackson Galaxy, but what a heart he has.
For those who haven't watched the show yet, it's really a simple idea with sometimes complicated analysis involved. Finding out what makes Fluffy misbehave isn't always easy to know. But with patience and humor, Jackson talks to the humans and watches the cats.
He gets amazing results over the course of the weeks he works with the families.
What made me start crushing on him was an episode in which he tried to help a young couple who were trying to blend their feline children, her one cat and his two, into a unit that would at least tolerate each other.
Jackson correctly read the resentments between the young woman and her beau that were the foundation for the problems exhibited by the cats. He gave them some homework to do and sure enough, things improved to the extent that at the end of the episode, the young man dropped to one knee and pulled out a diamond, proposing to his beloved now that there was a peaceful living situation.
Jackson cried. The young couple was shocked to move the big guy to tears, but my crush was launched.
In the very next episode, Jackson worked with another young couple who's dog and cat were wreaking havoc. The cat, in particular, was afraid around the woman.
Through Jackson's suggestions, before long the woman was able to feed treats to the animals as they sat side by side in front of her. The cat, who once ran and hid at any slight noise, was so much less afraid.
Which made Jackson cry again: He said in that sweet cat's face, he saw the faces of all the cats who couldn't be saved in the past because no one took the time to help them.
And then he raised his arms in gleeful triumph and my crush was cemented.
He might not be a matinee idol but Jackson Galaxy is the kind of gentleman we need to see more often in our world. He's a champion of pets and a supremely kind soul.
Tune in today at 8 p.m. on Animal Planet or watch online: animal.discovery.com/tv/my-cat-from-hell. You'll become a Jackson Galaxy admirer, too.
Renee Prusi can be contacted at 906-228-2500, ext. 253. Her email address is email@example.com.