Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Meanderings: Can't Get Enough

The sounds of the Love Unlimited Orchestra issuing from the multiple speakers in the midlife crisis sports car bring me back to a nineteen seventy something Chevy Monte Carlo with my pal, Rosemarie P, whose dancing as we sing along results in a pattern of rhythmic and sudden braking, a frenzied automotive palsy. God knows what the pedestrians think. The bunny pink lip gloss stands out against Roe's tanned skin, and her skinny tube top threatens to expose the only part of her that's not underdeveloped.

It brings me back, as I wait for the husky tones of Barry White. But, no, this is an instrumental. Sounds like Muzak. No matter. Sarasota's Lite FM... I'm almost ashamed to admit it, but I've gotten in the habit of listening to the station. See, it's like this. The country station gets all staticky if I put the rear defrost on, and given the conditions in the environs of my house in the AM-malarial swamp- well, I've had to move on. No matter about Barry, though. They play him every morning, not just any song but "Can't Get Enough of Your Lovin'." The words have all come back. There was a time... there was a time I knew the words to most of his songs and not because I bought his albums.

It was nineteen seventy something, and I was in St. Maarten with my best bud and her family. It was a sleepy little place in those days, at least on the Dutch side. Young and adventurous, we sought other young people in vain. The one disco on the island at the time had three locals in it, all of whom worked there. So we had to resign ourselves to vacationing in a honeymooners' paradise. Actually, though, it did turn out to be a lot of fun, except when I almost drowned in six feet of water while scuba diving. Doubtless because of all of the cigarette smoke I had been exposed to I ran out of air. I gestured to Elton, our dive guide, and he lent me his spare regulator so I could buddy breathe. I purged the thing and took a big gulp of...water! Directly above me, so close, was the sky, full of wonderful life giving air, and I was going to die, drown right here. How embarrassing. I obviously survived via the expedient of holding my breath, but that was the beginning and end of my diving career. After all, that was after I had trouble getting down to the bottom. My whole body strained downward, except for my ample orange and white striped Cuban posterior, which I have on good authority bobbed up and down in the waves. I won't even go into putting fire coral down the side of my bikini.

Anyway, I promised Barry White, and Barry White we shall have. The island was really trying. It had a radio station which was housed in a little shack on a hilltop over the shore. We could see it from our hotel. The single radio station had one single eight track. Yup, Barry White. We listened to Barry White incessantly for eight days and seven nights. Maybe, it sounds like torture, and it kinda felt like it at the time, but, heck, now it sounds pretty damn good.

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