Play It Again, Sam!

Published: Thursday, October 24, 2013 at 09:18 AM.

I kissed Millicent Blackburn right on the mouth on her grandmother’s front porch over on Magnolia Avenue. I don’t remember if we were in the swing or on that big couch against the back wall. I do know it was a hot summer night. I don’t how I got to her house, how we ended up on the porch alone or how long I stayed. I do remember distinctly that Percy Faith and his Orchestra was in the living room playing, “Theme from a Summer Place”.

It is amazing how one old song can define the time and the location, the situation and the moment for you. I hear Gene Autry sing “Back in the Saddle” and I can smell the popcorn from the old Park Theatre.

Probably the song I remember from high school more than any other was “Rebel Rouser” by Duane Eddy. The basketball team used it as their theme song as they came on the court. It was a scintillating moment as everything in the gym paused, Duane hit the first “twangy” notes on his ole Chet Atkins’ model Gretsch, the dressing room door flew open and Jackie Burns, Paul David Campbell, Jim Williams and the rest of the team poured out on the floor. I don’t see how we ever lost a game with that introduction!

Not all the memories are so sweet. When the doctor’s daughter came out to the Twin Pools to tell me the free golf was over the Coasters were blasting out of those giant speakers under the high diving boards, “Fe-fe, fi-fi, fo-fo, fum, I smell smoke in the auditorium…….”

When the fight broke out up at the Skyway Grill Bobby Brewer and I were minding our own business over Cherry Cokes and cheeseburgers. Rollin Trull threw some big guy from Huntingdon right slap-dap across our table! I did an immediate double back summersault to avoid the flying Cokes and body parts while the juke box was playing, “North to Alaska”.

Prom night was moving kind of slow until the masked rider rode the horse through the side doors right out on to the dance floor. Everybody looked shocked except the masked rider and the big horse. They promenaded to Bo Diddley’s “You Can’t Judge a Book by Looking at the Cover” before ducking off into the darkness from whence they came. Ended up being the best dance I ever attended.

You don’t suppose you can lose the memories if you can’t hear the music?



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