Sometimes a little distance from something can give you a completely different slant on it. There’s a whole lot of distance now, between my 60-year-old self and the summer of 1962.
That was the summer I played drums with The Ventures. Lee Edward Sonny Smith was my next-door neighbor in Memphis, Tenn. Sonny had gotten himself into the classic quandary of so many youngsters back in those days—he had secretly enrolled in the Columbia Record Club.
Crickets chirping. That’s a favorite Internet phrase that’s usually meant to point out a pause or a lack of response to something that was said during an internet conversation. Like for instance if a commenter said: “Anyone out there sorry to see this splendid summer coming to an end?” Then no one responds and someone says, “Crickets chirping.”
When the temperatures get above 100 week after week, when walking the dog makes me realize it’s going to be another 2-shower day, when I can pick fried green tomatoes right off the vine, already fried and I find myself smack dab in the middle of another blistering Kansas summer, I like to kick back and enjoy the silence.
When I got out of bed this morning, our dog Lucy did her usual dance of jubilation. Her front paws shot up in the air repeatedly, making a mockery of gravity, and she wiggled all over, enthusiastic at the sight of my awakening—sighing and huffing, then pouncing about and just making a general spectacle of herself.
All the talk lately about the Rapture that didn’t happen has put me in the mood to remember a rapture that I used to experience repeatedly: The last day of school before summer break. I remember how delicious that day was. Going to school on that day was a hollow formality. Mostly, we just picked up our report cards, fidgeted our sticky legs in our wooden desks for a few moments, and popped out of that school like tightly wound little springs—all joy and expectation.