What I Remember About "Free Willy"

When I was a kid, I was obsessed with the movie "Free Willy." It's on TV right now. Here are memories and feelings I associate with this movie. This list is probably for a very specific audience.
  1. This movie taught me about orcas and influenced my love of animals.
    Orcas are still one of my animals!
  2. I forced my family to watch this movie nonstop. At least once a day.
    My dad still calls this movie "Free Daddy." My brother said I "loved this movie too much."
  3. Before the movie played on the VHS, there was a PSA about protecting orcas in the wild. It filled me with so much inspiration and hope.
    It was sponsored by Bumblebee Tuna, I think.
  4. I loved the Michael Jackson Free Willy song.
    I ALWAYS watched the video that played before the movie on the VHS.
  5. I used to think Jesse was the cutest.
  6. Jesse's friend (the ~bad influence~) squirted ketchup on cake. This offended me, as a lover of cake and ketchup, separately.
    I just watched this part of the movie, and am now seeing how filthy their hands are. Those kids just dig into that cake, covered in dirt and germs and yuck.
  7. I would sob when Jesse threw the baseball through the window.
    He was such a tortured soul.
  8. Jesse played the harmonica, and it made me want to play the harmonica.
    I got a little plastic one. I was not good.
  9. I thought the whale trainer was the best.
    I wanted to be her. I probably talked like her for a long time, because that was something I did with all my favorite movie characters.
  10. I had a toy orca that I used to play with in the pool during the summer. Its white belly turned yellow from the chlorine.
  11. My family went to Sea World (before the controversy, at the height of my orca obsession) so I could see a whale up close.
    Everyone in my family got to participate in the show BUT ME. I was the only one who cared about killer whales, and I was FURIOUS that my brother got to touch one and I didn't.
  12. My mom got me the special edition VHS that came with the same whale necklace Jesse had.
    One of the most devastating losses of my childhood was when I lost that necklace. It fell of my neck somewhere in my backyard, never to be found again.