Dawn Reader

Dawn Reader
from Open Door Coffee Co.; Hudson, OH; Oct. 26, 2016

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Teardrops and South Pacific

Mitzi Gaynor and Rossano Brazzi
snuggle in the 1958 film

Okay, so I cried when it happened.

Yesterday, when we were preparing supper with our usual banter, the song "Younger Than Springtime" popped into my head (why? can't say)--and then "Some Enchanted Evening." I sang bits of both of them to Joyce (sounding very much like Ezio Pinza, by the way), and when I got to "Some Enchanted Evening," and those lines about "Once you have found her, never let her go," I grabbed Joyce and the tears flowed like (supply your own cliche) and my voice, ruined by emotion, no longer sounded like Pinza. More like pizza, if it could sing. Bad pizza.

We need some history for this.

When I was a kid, we had in our home the old 78 rpm records of the Broadway cast--Mary Martin and Ezio Pinza as, respectively (do I really need to add that? probably not), Nellie Forbush and Emile De Becque. I listened to it a few hundred times. A day. Later, we acquired the 33 rpm record, and I listened to it a few hundred times. A day. (Don't even think I'm exaggerating.)

the album of 78 rpm records
All of this was exacerbated in 1958 when the Brazzi-Gaynor film came out (link to trailer for the film). When I first saw it, I was staying with my uncle Ronald and aunt Naomi in Indianapolis for a week that summer. I would turn 14 later that fall, and let's just say--for the sake of decorum--that testosterone had declared itself the High King of my body (and mind--let's be honest).

At the movie, I could not stop staring at Mitzi Gaynor (look at the photo above and see if you can figure out why). My mind was aswirl with visions of Mitzi and me--and of our (erotic) future together on some remote (South Pacific) island.

So ... when I got home, I began listening to the record of South Pacific even more than had been my wont. (Why didn't I watch it? Well, for those of you who are chronologically challenged--i.e., born in the era of easy video recording--in 1958, no one had video recorders. You had to wait for the thing to show up on TV.)

Because of my continuous listening (and, no, not continual, which suggests periodic breaks), my family members were beginning to become somewhat ... impatient. Annoyed. And this would lead to a rather dramatic moment of Adolescent Frenzy (mine).

To be continued.

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