It’s music time, my friends! I neeeeed to post some songs that have just been running around in my head. We’ll have this week be all about Three Dog Night, m’kay?
I’ve made no secret of my love of the Mavericks and Raul Malo, so of course I have to post these videos. Makes my heart sing.
I’m a day late…okay, a couple years late on my PROMPTuesday response (I suck at remembering that Deb does these until Saturday or thereabouts, so I inevitably don’t do them), but I do have a story to tell. I may have already told it, but I’m okay with repeating myself repeatedly. (Yeah, yeah…it was intentional. Intentionally intentional.)
I only went to prom one year. It sucked. It shouldn’t have, but it did. And I still hold it against the guy who took me.
His name was Bill Powell.
Being the dorky classic movie freak that I’ve always been, I gave him far more credit as a human being simply because “William Powell” starred in movies I’d loved*. I was certainly no Myrna Loy, but again, he was also no William Powell. He was simply Bill Powell. (* Apparently I learned nothing after dating a “Fontaine” and imagining myself marrying him… [I really was a dorky classic movie freak with stars in my eyes and dream in my heart].)
Also, in a tuxedo, with his walk, he was all too penguiny. For anyone’s taste (except maybe a real penguin, although with his behavior that night, no penguin in their right mind would want to be associated with him).
But before prom night and the terrible disappointment and disgust I ended up feeling, I was your typical teen girl who imagined prom to be a magical event and was completely caught up in the dream of what it might be. But, without the budget of my wealthier friends and with self-esteem issues, I don’t know why I thought I’d miraculously look like a princess or how I’d end up with a prince of a guy.
I’d spent a lot of time looking for a prom dress. Our neighbor worked in a bridal shop so, of course, that’s where we ended up looking (first and, eventually, finally). I tried on many gowns, liking nothing. Of course, it had more to do with me not liking how I looked. I was a very typical teenager who bought into the whole “I’ll never be pretty or perfect enough” idea that young women still fight to this day. I didn’t see that I was actually of a nice build or that I had lovely hair and teeth or that I could actually be considered “cute”. Or I worried because I came from a working class family with a loud, grumpy father. I wasn’t the most popular in the school. I knew plenty of the popular kids, but I wasn’t OF THEM. I spent far too much time believing that guys asked me out because they were half blind and probably only liked me because I was funny in a self-deprecating manner.
Anyhow, after visiting several stores, my mom and I ended up back at the first shop and I settled on a white sleeveless gown with a scoop neck trimmed with ruffles and a ruffled hem. We did away with the white sash at the waist and chose, instead, a semi-wide sea green ribbon to replace it. For some reason, I wanted a Gibson Girl hairdo, but ended up going with slightly-more-curled version of my standard feathered hairdo because nobody in high school ever needs to do their hair in a Gibson Girl unless they’re in a play.
Bill showed up in his dad’s sedan. Don’t recall what kind, but I remember it being a lovely metallic blue that sedans of the day often were. I had his boutonniere ready to go and he had my corsage. My parents took pictures as we were getting ready to leave and there was still hope in my heart that the evening would be fantastic.
Off we went to Quails Inn for dinner. We’d be dining with mutual friends. And, my dear readers, is where everything quickly turned to absolute shit.
The people with whom we sat noticed another kid from school who was in band, played the tuba, and who also happened to be overweight. Now, deep down inside, I still considered myself a fat kid (I wasn’t, but I was sensitive to my past weight and the weight issues others suffered [or not suffered in their minds]). These kids I sat with, these kids I’d known for several years, these kids who’d also been in band (or still were) began talking about this young man. Loudly. Loud enough for him and his date and everyone else in the room to hear. I was getting upset. I tried shushing them. I told them they were being rude. I tried pleading with them to just stop. To no avail. I turned to Bill and quietly asked him to do something, but he only laughed along with the others and jumped into their conversation. I got up from the table and spent a good 30 minutes in the bathroom wondering who these people were. How could they be so cruel? Should I go apologize to the young man? Should I call my parents and beg them to come pick me up? Finally, I headed out of the bathroom, making quick eye contact with the boy who’d been the object of my tablemates’ mean mouths. He smiled at me and nodded. My cheeks were burning and my heart was pounding. What would happen? By the time I’d got back to the table, everyone but Bill was gone. He said something stupid about me being away for so long, but had nothing to say for himself when I asked why he said such awful things about someone I KNEW he had been friends with at one point in his life. I also said I would sit at the same table as everyone else at the dance over my dead body. He could sit with them if he wanted, but I wouldn’t be by his side.
Leaving the restaurant, we headed out to Camp Pendleton. Yep, our prom was on a Marine Corps base. A fairly long, foggy drive on a weekend when not only are adults drinking and driving, but most of the kids are, too…just what every parent dreams of!
Once at the dance, I saw two of my dearest friends in the world: Rich and Susie. I made a beeline toward them. Rich knew something was wrong. Susie knew something was wrong. It was kind of hard NOT to notice given that I practically ran to them and my date went in a different direction. Having grown up with both Rich and Susie, I felt a huge sense of relief in knowing that they’d understand, and you know what? They did. They insisted I stay with them for the rest of the night, Susie even sending me out on the dance floor with Rich more than once. The only song I recall us dancing to, though, was “Stairway to Heaven”. They wanted to take me home, but I couldn’t impose on them to that extent. I’d have to face the nasty little penguin boy at some point (and who would possibly ruin what might have been planned for her friends on prom night, right?) so I said my goodbyes and found Bill.
In the car, he acted as if nothing had happened and chattered about a big party everyone else was going to afterwards. Did I want to go? Uh…no way in hell! Disappointed and without a shred of understanding why, he angrily drove me home. It was a long, uncomfortable drive in the fog — that of the weather and in his self-deluded notion that I’d somehow thank him for the super fun evening. As he pulled up to my house, he leaned over as if to kiss me and missed by a mile as I was already out of the car and halfway to my front door.
We never spoke again. When he’d see me at school, his face would turn bright red, his walk would become even more waddly, and he’d stomp off. And of all the other kids who were at that dinner table, talking trash about a classmate, only ONE of them approached me after and apologized for her behavior. My only comment to her at that time was that I was not the one who needed an apology and if she couldn’t muster up the courage to ask for mercy from the person she hurt then I had no room for her in my life.
Thinking back on that all these years later, I’m struck by a couple of things:
1) I was an idiot as a teenager, but not the biggest idiot in the world.
2) I had more backbone than I gave myself credit for. I wish I had known it was there and used it more often.
3) I’m so glad I never have to go through that time in life ever again. Kids can be shitty assholes of the highest magnitude. That ANY of us survived high school in the 80s (or at any time) is a damn miracle.
I’m ruminating far too much today. Lots on my mind and I’m trying to crawl out of the navel-gazing that’s going on within me (I know, that’s a bit redundant). Enjoy some Bingham.
Sorry. Spent an evening with one of the sexiest men alive and my mind went a-wandering.
Two largely unrelated videos that simply make me happy. One is upbeat. The other is just beautifully written and sung by a favorite artist.
Today’s Two-fer is different from what I submitted to Blinded By Sound. That post includes a cookie — because I like cookies.
I love Jack Tempchin. You do, too. I know you do.
This was one of my favorite songs when I was a kid.
Tis PrompTuesday over at San Diego Momma’s place. Been a long time since I’ve played along, but heck, my post was written in her comments section. I’m just spreading the love.
You know how such complicated things are really quite simple? Like, you want to work out? WORK OUT (San Diego Momma). Or, you want to write a book? WRITE A BOOK (San Diego Momma). Or maybe you’ve been meaning to reclaim your soul from social media saturation. STOP TWEETING SO MUCH AND WRITE YOUR BOOK (San Diego Momma). So for today’s writing prompt, I’d love you to laundry list something that sounds complicated, such as…
Oh, go read her entry. It’s good.
“As for YOU, laundry list something. And…Please post your submission in the comments OR post in your blog and leave a link to your blog in the comments.”
I’m a great lister, so here’s mine:
How to survive in Las Vegas:
- Find a sugardaddy.
1a. Be under 25
1b. Be HOT
- Work at any of the big casinos as a service “model”
2a. Again, be under 25
2b. And, naturally, be hot
- Failing the first two suggestions, try gambling. Because there’s no RISK OF LOSING EVERYTHING. Ever. Not at all.
- Take a job in an industry that’s oversaturated by people who don’t know what they’re doing and charge too little, thus fucking it up for those of us who are good and charge for being educated and competent.
- Hope you have enough friends with empty sofas so you can couch surf your way through life as you wait for meaningful work.
- Be prepared to piss off at least two of those friends (over something small, but still piss-off-able).
- Be prepared to beg and plead for forgiveness endlessly if they are the kind of friends you like having in your life.
- When all else fails, become a live-in nanny for first time parents who are sweet as can be and make you life as comfortable and happy as possible. No lie. They’re that good.
A quick return to Two-fer Tuesday.
Having a full on John Denver sort of longing. I know, mostly, it’s a longing for home, for my children. LD’s birthday is Monday. He’ll be 15. Mojo’s birthday is just another month away, too. She’ll be 19. How did that happen?
When the kids were young, we listened to a lot of John Denver and his music makes me terribly nostalgic for those times when we curled up at night and sang together as they headed toward slumber.
While not a “sleeping” song, this tune was one of our favorites. LD used to call for it all the time. I remember him in the back of the car, kicking his little legs to the music, calling, “Mommy! I can make the galloping sounds!” The ex hated it, but I thought it was precious. And Mojo, she’d beg for a guitar so she could learn to play Denver’s music “so the world will never forget him.” (That’s when he was still alive, too.)
A song few seem to remember.
The following used to be LD’s favorite sweet dreams song.
I love this song. It’s just so… lovely.
Expected — from phenomenal pianist Henry Gray:
I had the distinct honor of meeting Henry Gray in 2009, hearing him play, and photographing him at work. Lovely man.
I’m so sad that I only got to visit the Liberace Museum once for a cabaret showcase right when I moved to the Vegas. If you’re amenable to it, they are taking donations to help preserve the collection and find it a permanent home. It’s worth it. Sincerely, to see the shoes and the costumes and the piano and everything else…this is a sight to behold.
And one of my favorites — the Queen of Boogie Woogie, Ms. Sue Palmer! Special guest, Steve Lucky (of Steve Lucky & the Rhumba Bums, who I also enjoy):
My son is visiting this week, so I told him to pick a couple videos. Here are his choices.
First up, Golden Earring – cuz you can never get enough dramatic spy music videos and cheesy 80s dancing. All at the same time.
And Billy Idol. Because nothing says cheesy 80s dancing better than cheesy dancing zombies!
Of course, it wouldn’t be an adequate Two-fer Tuesday without a bonus or two. How about some cheesy 80s dancing with older Brits from the Kinks?
Perhaps a little cheesy 80s stop animation dancing from Men At Work is in order, too. *Now with extra random old lady appearance!*
Ah, I do believe I’ve taught him well. He’s even growing a cheesy teen mustache just so he can fit in around here. I’m truly very proud. Honest. Now if only I could get him to stop growing so tall!
(File this one under, “Whoops! Mommy can’t read a calendar”…had it scheduled for tomorrow. Now…we are off to explore.)
May all your holiday wishes come true!
And of course, my favorite of all times.
Let’s face it, there are some songs that would never be hits in this day and age. Then again, some weren’t even hits back when they were released. But having a hit isn’t always necessary to entertain your audience. Of course, it helps if they have some idea what you’re doing. Then again, since when did musical entertainment HAVE to make sense? Sometimes music wanders into “Who’s On First” territory and, guess what? We don’t care. We’re along for the lovely lilting ride.
Three of my favorite examples of this:
I’d thought maybe I’d include songs from Kay Kyser (with whom my grandfather used to play) and Spike Jones (a family favorite), but it turned out most of their songs all made sense! Go figure.
Also, I’d like to give a “happy birthday” to my big sis! She’s a pretty amazing lady.
Had to try something different this week. I have a lot of great music that doesn’t fit in with a theme or whatever, so it’s kind of nice to just pull it out whenever I get stuck.
I found Jilly Tracy via Scrubs, if you can believe it.
And this one? Well, it sort of explains itself.
Completely unrelated and yet both give me the pause I need in my day.
I refuse to go cold turkey (despite it being Thanksgiving week and all) for an entire month when it comes to Human Nature. I’ve seen their show eight times thus far and, honestly? It’s damn good stuff. I was hoping to get in a couple more shows before the group headed off on their Australian tour, but that didn’t happen. So, for now, I’ll have to make due with their YouTube videos.
Hey, I hear you mumbling over there. Don’t question why I’d need to see the show so many times! I said it was good and I meant it. Let me put it this way: when everything else in this crazy town of Las Vegas relies on huge spectacular acrobatics and contortions and makeup and illusion and sex and explosions, it’s really refreshing to be able to go see a show where music matters to the extent that it does with Human Nature. This isn’t just some tribute show. It’s a celebration of all the great Motown hits. Four guys singing their hearts out, dancing up a storm, and enticing you to remember a time when music was king and we were all prom queens. You walk out of the show feeling young and alive and energized! You’ve spent 90 minutes singing and dancing along with those sweet harmonies and you don’t care who saw. How many times has that happened to you? That’s what I thought. So don’t question me on my tiny addiction. It’s the disease AND the cure.
Music? You wanted music? Okay, here we go!
And lest you think that’s all there is, let’s have a couple bonus songs, shall we?
There. That’ll get me through a couple hours. Only 670 hours or so to go until I get another live fix.