Sorry. I was obliged to interrupt this nostalgia presentation by an urgent call to the bathroom. Although I had followed all the directions on the hand-out,
- Do not eat or drink fluids after midnight. This includes coffee and water. THEN:
- 1 and 1/2 hours before your exam empty your bladder and then drink 32 ounces of water (four 8 ounce glasses of water)
- Drink all 32 ounces within the first 30 minutes after emptying your bladder
In floating pleasantly through my memories, I'd entirely lost track of the time! And there was a sudden beeping on my phone upstairs, which I had gone up to so that I might retrieve my wallet with my driver's license and medical cards and other forms of identification) and it was the nurse calling to inquire if I was coming in this morning. (OF COURSE, I lost track of the time, and I apologized profusely). Then I drove down there and went through forty or so minutes of yet another procedure while the doctor made me nervous ("I might not have time for the complete testing this morning, we'll see how it goes" which meant I might have to come back another time ... GOD! ... and I could barely get there today! all while my teeth were beginning to float because the instructions, which I had followed to the letter, had said:
- Do not use the restroom before the exam
So where was I?
Oh yeah, "Long Tall Texan", "The Meeting Place", and ..... skits.
Ok, this is important now, so listen up. (I'm playing nyah-nyah-nyah-nyah-nyah in my head as I write this one). I WAS mentioned in the credits on Frank's first album, "Freak Out!", I honestly was. But my identity was concealed as "Railroad Bill" (which was another song I sang in my feeble coffee house act, though I tried my damn best to imitate Barbara Dane blasting one out). That's but ONE of the reasons. The other reason, is in 7th grade I knew a boy named Ronnie Self, whose dad was *NOT* ENGINEER BILL on television, but a competitive children's TV host named "Uncle Luther". (Remember how in Claremont of that time all we received were the Gold Bond Stamps instead of Green Stamps, and "General Telephone" rather than Mother Bell, and we were regarded as a cowtown by Hollywood cinema merchants so we were relegated to second run films rather than first release premiers? This second class regard could be and likely was hurtful to a community's cultural identity in the long run, you know.)
Anyway, Ronnie and his dad got permission so all the kids in Ronnie's class could go into a tour of television studios in far away Los Angeles one time. That was the middle school children's walking tour, the one where the rich dentist's kid acted up, and pushed over a $250,000 camera to "act out" and draw a little attention to himself. Remember that one?) Ronnie was kind of fun, we were in junior high school drama class together.
Ok, that's the true story. And if you don't believe it, too bad. I know deep in my heart that Frank, having heard all those stories from me as I was growing up around him, stuck in that weird allusion to me, and I didn't mind at all that it wasn't my real name on the album notes. Other people ("Ichabod", for example) would later boast in print and repeatedly how they'd managed to get mentioned "BY NAME" in the credits. So what, I'd say to myself. Let's play "red light" "green light" and drink our milk, or our beverage of choice.
And when I say "GREEN LIGHT", you keep drinking and glubbing down your glass until I say "RED LIGHT". Get it? (There were red and green lights in recording and television studios, too .... see ... and on traffic signals ... they're everywhere .... and I could control them ALL!!! with the power of electronic transmission ... whatever you're doing, whatever you're drinking, wherever you are ... )
Ok, boys and girls. Get ready.