Monday, March 31, 2014

Monday Meander Naaa Na NaNa

Naaa Na NaNa

Enticement is more effective than recommendation, and I generally don’t recommend books anyway, but delanceyplace entices effectively with their daily extracts. Reading there about ancient Miletos last week, I ordered Europe Between the Oceans 9000 BC-AD 1000 by Cunliffe, which has arrived and just as I thought, “it’s that thick” so will be a while reading, but I finished chapter one, sort of an introduction, and it’s going to be a really good one. 

A friend loves fiction and movies and hearing I’d recently watched the movie has given me The Great Gatsby by Fitzgerald. Read (red) chapter one at bedtime last night, and also read some of the last page, which is life philosophical for anyone who wants to learn about self and life. Life and stories begin and end with a flashing green light. Never having read F. Scott Fitzgerald, I didn’t realize his writing is so colorful, eloquent. In chapter one, “What Gatsby?” hints up front that Daisy has heard. You can be in love and willing to sacrifice everything for it as Jay was and did, or in love but not willing to sacrifice, or you can be in love but as shallow of being and treat love as a bauble of amusement as Daisy did. Jay Gatsby? It was Gatz, actually, poor Jimmy, he never knew his dream was over before it even started and he never had a chance. I’ll put !!! some explanation points there to steer away from the maudlin. Did you know, the English say “Mary Maudlin” for Mary Magdalene, which may be where we get the word “maudlin” for sappily sentimental. OK, !!!  

The Beatles intrigue anyone my age, the sound goes round in my head all the time, except when Marqua starts up “Nothing but the Blood of Jesus” or “Open My Eyes that I May See” as I serve Holy Communion, and then I’m happily into that for the rest of the day. But this morning’s delanceyplace piece is about John and Paul, Lennon and McCartney, who started working together when they were 17 and 15. I won't order the book, 

Tune In: The Beatles: All These Years
Author: Mark Lewisohn 
Publisher: Crown Archetype 
Date: Copyright 2013 by Mark Lewisohn

but reading delanceyplace this morning starts the humming again, “Hey Jude” and “Yellow Submarine” (get out of my head, that song drives me crazy) and especially “All You Need Is Love.” But also “Here Comes the Sun” which always took me back to a completely different song, being age 18, my freshman year at UF, and every evening in my dorm room with roommate Philip Johnson listening to University Radio as they went off the air with “It’s almost tomorrow and here comes the sun,” which for us who had a girlfriend far away succeeded in making the close of every day sentimental and stirring up homesickness. Not really homesickness though, because I was not at all homesick those UF years, especially feeling so set-free my first year. But seeing my girls go off to college has helped me appreciate my mother’s feelings when I got my father’s letter in September 1953, saying that mama cried all the way home after they dropped me in Gainesville. See what the mind does, where it goes. Anyway, the only time I felt a twinge of homesickness of that sort was my freshman year at Bay High, longing for Cove School. It’s OK, because now I own a key and can walk the Cove School hall 24/7 if I wish. The walls of the hall are soaked with laughter and chatter whether there’s anybody there or not. Were you there? I am always there.

First heard of the Beatles in the carpool driving from Navy housing in Yokohama to Yokosuka Naval Base one morning in Japan, it would have been, maybe summer 1963, and Wayne Hatchett said something about a Beatle haircut. I asked, “What’s a Beatle haircut?” and he said, “You never heard of the Beatles?” Let’s see, there were four of us in the car that morning. Me, Wayne, Ron Murphy and Gary Hahn. Wayne played the banjo, he and Bev lived across the cul-de-sac from us in Yokohama, sort of lost track of him after that. Gary was from Scotts Bluff, Nebraska, where his father had been a Nash Rambler dealer and as I recall, his sister’s husband was an Oldsmobile dealer in Indianapolis, they always went to the Indy 500, a big thing for their dealership. Gary and Gerry Hahn lived two doors down from us in the cul-de-sac. They came to see us once when we were living in Harrisburg, I kept Gary’s VW Beetle the year he was in Vietnam and we were living in Washington, DC. Ron and Jan Murphy live in California and Washington State and have been here to visit us a couple of times. 

So the Dream Weavers with “It’s almost tomorrow, and here comes the sun” a couple years before Elvis Presley, who was my age, came along my senior year singing “Don’t you step on my blue suede shoes.” I never had blue suede shoes, but always had white bucks in high school and college. And then the Navy decades wearing white shoes with red rubber soles, with the dress white uniform and that stiff collar, and white shoes with the work uniform of white socks, white long pants, short sleeve white shirt with ribbons and name tag WELLER.

Waking up this morning my first thought was to print yesterday’s sermon "Nothing but the Blood" instead of bothering to write. But then the Beatles start humming around in my head. Naaa Na NaNa. And going to sleep to Gatsby kept making me think of that flashing green channel light in the Apalachicola River. We'll be going back to the Apalachicola River Inn for a couple nights from time to time, and I'll watch that green light, and the flashing red light, and gorge myself on Texas and Louisiana oysters. 


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