Sunday, June 7, 2015

"Oh, Kaye!" chats about music, memories and blind dates - oh, my

oh, my.

The songs.

The songs and those memories.

They do come back, don't they?

We know this happens.

We know hearing a particular song can transport us back to a particular memory, place and/or person we've attached to it.

It may not even be a memory we're fully conscious of, or one we'll fully remember until BAM, we're there, all wrapped up in it.

And, sadly, it may not always be a pleasant memory.

There's a song that takes me back to being a kid taking car trips with my parents. Back in the day, we made up games to play and I'm guessing a lot of you played the very same ones. Keeping track of how many different states we would see cars from by their license plate was one.

And we sang. Even if none of us could carry a tune in a bucket, we sang. And we sang with great gusto!

The song I remember us singing most often was a little ditty called "Playmate."

Remember it?

(Words and music by Saxie Dowell)
Copyright 1940 by Santly-Joy-Select Inc.

There's a catchy little tune a floatin' through the air,
You hear it here and there,
They sing it ev'ry where
How it started, where it started
seems nobody knows.
But what's the diff'rence where it came from,
here's the way it goes

Oh PLAYMATE, come out and play with me
And bring your dollies three.
Climb up my apple tree,
Look down my rain barrel
Slide down my cellar door
And we'll be jolly friends forever more.

It was a rainy day, She couldn't come out to play,
With tearful eyes and tender sighs
I could hear her say:

I'm sorry Playmate, I cannot play with you
My dollies have the flu,
Boo-hoo hoo hoo hoo hoo.
Ain't got no rain barrel,
Ain't got no cellar door
But we'll be jolly friends forever more.

(Note: I had intended to insert a YouTube video of the song here, but I was concerned about how many of you might actually threaten my life, so changed my mind. But - there are, indeed, a few different versions right there on YouTube just waiting for you to click on one for your enjoyment, if you dare).

And, oh my, so many others . . .

Scooting ahead to my sophomore year at Brandywine College in Wilmington, DE (which is now, I'm sad to say, no longer Brandywine College, but part of the law school for Widener University). 

I went home with a girlfriend one weekend. She wanted me to meet her boyfriend's best friend and I said yes.






Blind dates may work out for some people. I was never one of those people.

But this one?

This was the worst.

This girl and I were friends, and I liked her lots.  We were not what I would call, extremely close, and after this, we were, um, less close.  I had not met her boyfriend before this fateful weekend, and obviously had not met his friend.

Well, short version - I disliked her boyfriend immediately (and the feeling was mutual). And the friend? oh, my. Suffice to say, it was never going to go beyond one date, and if I had had a way to escape shortly into the date, I would have.

The date was dinner and a movie.

I don't remember dinner, but I do remember the movie, and it was "The Sound of Music."

I loved it, of course.

But, sadly, whenever I hear a song from that oh, so lovely movie, even to this day, I'm immediately and rudely bumped right back to sitting in the movie theater next to this guy. This guy wearing a weird floppy hat.  

Yes.  a hat exactly like this hat - I swear.  Would I kid about this hat??

And, bless his heart, he may suffer the same feelings now, who knows.

But, 'tis a sad thing when Don Barley says to me, "Sound of Music is coming on tonight if you're interested," and I immediately get an upset stomach and a headache and say, "oh, no, I don't think so, but thanks."

Julie Andrews deserves so much better.

How 'bout you Reds? Any music related memories you want to share?  Or, how about some blind date stories??  Come on now, if I can share this one,  surely there's one you can share.  Especially ones that involve odd articles of clothing . . . 


  1. Somehow I managed to [thankfully] miss out on the whole blind date thing, so I’ve no stories to share, but I have to say your floppy hat picture reminded me of the scarecrow in “The Wizard of Oz” [and there’s a few great songs to be found in that film].

    Music memories? My favorite record when we were kids was “Sparky’s Magic Piano.” Haven’t heard it in years, but when you said “a song that takes me back to being a kid” that immediately popped into my mind . . . .

  2. "Oh, Kaye!" Try this psychedelic, Bob Dylan inspired version of "Playmate". This 'gem' from Pearls Before Swine gives another perspective on this oldie!

    As for blind dates - only 1 ever and I still shudder.

  3. Oh Kaye, I think you made the right move not implanting that earworm! Was it just the hat, or were there other things about the date?

    I can remember a couple of bad ones too--one in which I was too shy to say anything, NOT ONE WORD, and the boy was no better. Truly awkward!

    what brings back memories for me is RED RUBBER BALL--back to teenage angst in an instant!

  4. There was just one blind date that the guy and I both resisted heartily. His best friend and my friend, married to each other, insisted that we meet and double date. We grudgingly agreed. On my best days I'm 5'3". He came to the door to pick me up--all 6'4" of him. After I hurriedly changed into higher-heeled shoes, we had a memorable first date.
    That was on the weekend after Thanksgiving, 1953. I received a ring on Christmas Eve that year. The upshot? Reader, I married him! March 26, 1954. Our song: True Love, from a lovely Bing Crosby/Grace Kelly movie. Just one blind date, but it was a winner.

  5. Joan, oh oh oh, the scarecrow's hat! How could I have missed that? I love that movie too. I don't think I remember Sparky's Magic Piano and will have to look for it at YouTube.

    I'm stunned, stitchkat, to learn there's a Bob Dylan version of my favorite childhood song, and I have never heard it! Another one to look for at YouTube, thank you!

    Lucy/Roberta, you know, I don't seem to remember much else about this boy other than the hat. And honestly, I don't recall us exchanging a single word. We must have, of course, but it's all a memory I seem to have completely blocked out. But, oh yes, I do remember being too shy to say much myself on those kinds of dates. Looking back now, I wonder, "who was that girl? was that really me??"

    Oh, Lenita, what a wonderful story. Lovely! And I love that Bing Crosby song. From the movie High Society, which I also loved.

  6. Ah, blind dates. I had my share of disasters. I did, however, marry one of them. 1967. The call came out of the blue -- he was the roommate of one of my exes and had an extra ticket to a college hockey game at Madison Square Garden. Did I want to go? The ex had been a mistake so I equivocated. But I wasn't seeing anyone, and I'd never been to a hockey game. When I got down to the lobby of the dorm he was waiting for me. And he was pretty cute. The evening got better from there.

  7. aw, Hallie - Sweet! I'm loving the blind date success stories.

  8. "Yesterday"--takes me back every time to Paul McCartney's voice coming from a 45 on a tiny plastic record player--4th grade slumber parties and we'd all swoon and imagine we understood what he was singing about.

    Blind date? Never got that far. My friend: "Come on, let me fix you up with my husband's best friend." Me: "No." My friend: "You'll really like him once you get to know him." Me: "No." My friend: "You guys have lots in common." Me: "Like what?" My friend: "Well, he likes to go bear-hunting with his dad." Me: "Um, no. But thanks for thinking of me. Really."

  9. Hallie, that's adorable!

    I was set up on a blind date with a guy and picked the movie, A Room With a View. When the Puccini aria began at the start he said, "Is this gonna be about culta [culture] or somethin'?" Nope, never went out again. Didn't spoil the film for me, though...

  10. FChurch, you made me laugh!
    I was waiting to see if you also liked to go bear-hunting with you dad!
    too funny!

  11. Kaye, I like my bears the wild... at a far on videos! ;-)

  12. Blind dates..ah. I'm not sure anyone ever thought I was worthy enough to go on one, seriously. Hmm.That's awful, thinking about it. But it sounds like I didn't miss much.
    Jonathan and I met by chance, though, and about a week later, went to Sling Blade, the very first movie we ever saw together.

    About ten minutes into it, I started crying. Very softly.
    Jonathan leaned over, and said, "Do you have a cold?"
    "No," I whispered, "I'm crying."
    Jonathan paused, then said, "But the movie's not sad."
    I looked at him. "It's GONNA BE sad."
    I cried through the rest of the movie, and through our Chinese food dinner.

    Can you believe we are still together?

  13. FChurch - I'm with you!!

    Susan - "Is this gonna be about culta [culture] or somethin'?" nooooooooo. just. no.

    Hank - I love this story. And oh yes, I absolutely can believe you're still together. It was meant to be.

  14. "There is a house down in New Orleans they call the rising sun/ And its been the ruin of many a poor girl and me, oh God, I'm one." Bob Dylan

    I'm hunkered down in half a shotgun cottage in Uptown New Orleans, nursing my daughter through her recovery from major knee surgery. Every day when I'm out in the neighborhood, trying not to trip and fall on the cracked and heaved sidewalks, listening to the caterwauling mockingbirds, the Dylan song runs through my head.

  15. ooooh, love this, Margaret! A very powerful memory and beautifully written

  16. Oh, Lenita, I love High Society. And that is a wonderful story! And now I am humming..."For you and I have a guardian angel, on high.with nothing to do but to give to you and to give to me..LOVE forever troooooo..."

  17. Oh, you guys are so funny! Lenita, lovely story, and you, too, Hallie. Susan, ack! Just ack. Worse than Kaye's blind date's hat.

    So many music/memory connections to choose from, but here's a weird little song memory that popped into my head: Grade school, visiting my two older cousins in an unfamiliar house in Dallas--maybe they were staying with relatives temporarily? I never saw the house again. But someone had a little portable record player and the 45 (oh, my God, a 45!) of The Lion Sleeps Tonight. We all sang it, over and over again, at the top our our lungs. Truly awful. And I can never hear that song without thinking of that.

    I never went on a blind date. I'm SO glad.

  18. Blind dates...they worked out about 50/50 in college. My husband was a blind date and I still have him. Girl friend in high school set me up with a friend of her friend. They were both in the German air force training nearby; I guess they'd come to New Orleans for the weekend. That was the date from hell. My "date" complained because my friend's nextdoor neighbor wasn't available. Evidently she was "fast". So he was stuck with me. Oh well. High school seniors shouldn't be dating the German air force anyway.

  19. OH, Deborah - now you've done it! I remember that song. And now that I have an earworm, it's only right I share it with all of you -

    In the jungle, the mighty jungle
    The lion sleeps tonight
    In the jungle, the quiet jungle
    The lion sleeps tonight

    Wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh
    Wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh
    Wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh
    Wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh

    Near the village, the peaceful village
    The lion sleeps tonight
    Near the village, the quiet village
    the lion sleeps tonight
    Wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh
    Wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh
    Wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh
    Wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh

  20. Pat D. - this made me laugh, "Oh well. High school seniors shouldn't be dating the German air force anyway." Probably exactly right. LOL!

  21. Kaye, I can't tell you how many times I fell in love while slow dancing to "Only You" by The Platters. Only one blind date really stands out. I worked with a girl named Carol, who set me up with her best friend, JoAnn. Turned out JoAnn didn't dance, but talked non-stop. I don't think I got a word in edgewise or otherwise the whole night. There was no second date. Funny thing is, a couple years later, I married that girl named Carol, and we've been married about 150 years now. She and JoAnn are still close friends, but none of us every mentions that blind date.

  22. Oh, Earl - what a wonderful story!!!
    150 years? Shoot, you guys are still on your honeymoon.

  23. So hard to leave behind bad memories . . . but so important. I have places and activities that have unpleasant associations, trying to make new ones to compensate. I can't think of any songs though.
    My mother loved to tell of the first time she saw Sound of Music. Something was wrong with the projector, no sound at all, just Julie silently dancing on a beautiful mountaintop. The manager apologized and re-started the movie.

  24. storytellermary, so true. Important to leave unpleasant memories behind, or learn to laugh about them. I'm betting Julie looked quite excitable dancing around the mountaintop silently, that's funny.

  25. Joan-is that "Sparky's Magic Piano" as in the radio show "Big John and Sparky"? I remember no specifics of the show, but it was my childhood favorite! Lovely days those were before TV.
    Kate-"Wimoweh" ironic that it comes up here the day after the death of Ronnie Gilbert of the Weavers. The Weavers, Pete Seeger, Lee Hays, now with silenced voices, can sing on in my ears any time.

  26. Sorry, I typed "Kate" while looking at "Kaye"

  27. Elisabeth, so sad to hear Ronnie Gilbert died, I didn't know. :-(

  28. Blind dates? No. Bad dates? Yes, and I can't blame a friend for choosing the guy for me. I have to take full blame myself. Worse was a guy in the college karate club. Nothing against karate, except we went to a football game, as a group, and I discovered to my dismay that the team was forbidden to drink. So were their dates. How someone is supposed to survive watching a football game without a lot of booze is a mystery to me.....

    Bless his heart, though, he was a nice boy. He was just not right for me.

  29. I have a sweet memory of the Hermit's Hermits song, "Mrs. Brown, You've Got a Lovely Daughter." When it came out in 1968, I was fourteen, and one of the cute guys in the neighborhood was going around singing it, except he changed "Mrs. Brown" to "Mrs. Boone," my mother's name. Such a heartthrob memory.

    I have another song that marked a most significant moment in my life, but suffice it to say that I may be one of the few people I know to have this moment marked with a song, one that was entirely appropriate.

    Blind dates? My husband was a blind date on my part. He had already seen me, and a mutual friend set up the date for him. I would never have believed that I would meet my future husband in this manner. I think it's the only blind date I ever went on.

  30. Elisabeth:
    I'm sorry, but I don't know about your radio show.
    I had a three-record set to tell the story about a little boy taking piano lessons. His magic piano talked to him and played beautiful music [played by Ray Turner] written by Beethoven, Liszt, Chopin . . . it was heavenly.

  31. This is fun.

    Ramona, did that date to the game prompt you to always ask if you would be allowed to drink when someone invited you to a football game? I'm with you footballs games meant drinks!

    Oh, Kathy - I'm laughing at what I'm just guessing your most significant moment might have been.

    Joan - I'm sad not to have had childhood knowledge of Sparky's Magic Piano, which sounds lovely.

  32. I was 5'1. He was 6'4 1/2" and was Phoebe's date. Not mine. His sister was my roommate. I don't know what plans she had for me, but it was Christmas vacation time. As was the tradition, my roomie invited me home for the holidays, because I had nowhere to go that year. I was a very shlumpy pal to bring home to her family with little control over my mouth. So there I was talking about my parents' divorce when little brother, home from boarding school in Pennsylvania, committed the family faux pas by turning his radio to full volume. He had it tuned to a country western station playing Glen Campbell's Gentle on My Mind. And just as Phoebe's intended match walked in, the music blared—no—kidding:

    It's knowin' that your door is always open
    And your path is free to walk
    That makes me tend to leave my sleepin' bag
    Rolled up and stashed behind your couch.

    I'm 5' even, now. And he's just 6'3. But we are still together. Two classical music fans with a copy of Glen Campbell's Gentle on My Mind on our iPods.

  33. Reine, what a fantastic story!!! Love it!!