Sunday, January 11, 2015

They Can't Take That Away

A New Year

A couple of days ago, my friend Paula
asked a most interesting question on facebook:

Is there anyone else who ends up still awake in the wee hours, thinking of times gone by? Maybe that's what old people without kids just do. The Beatles, other music from my youth, plays from high school and college, and a few years after.

Vacations with my family as a child, our early houses when the boys (old men now!) were just babies or little tiny kids? And my early years, singing with my ex-husband. Followed by horrid years as a secretary. Followed by great years as a singer in bands.

Followed, thank God, at long last, me with a teaching degree and loving my work. I think it's a function of having no children of my own. Just curious. Just asking. And missing my parents, and even my grandparents, more than is normal? I just want to figure out if I'm normal! But there are very few childless friends to ask. if you're on my list, it means you're my nearest and dearest in my heart. Sorry to bother you!

No bother, Paula!

Our mutual friend Mitzi responded: Oh my. Without fail, every day, my mind goes back somewhere. It may be a memory from 5 years ago, or 50, or even farther. Reconnecting with so many people here on Facebook, who were such a big part of my childhood, has revived great memories that I go back to often. I pull up memories of my brother when he was little as well, and my folks, and my precious grandma Elsie who was the best grandma ever. As we get older, dear Paula, we remember less and less about what we did five minutes ago, and more about what we did fifty years back. The piece of advise that I hand out most often is, 'Be sure to make memories.' One of these days, my memories will be all I end up with, and I want to make sure that I have a whole lot to look back on.

As I'm sure you can easily imagine, Paula's initial question
grew into a thread of over thirty comments, with lots of
friends contributing opinions and memories and kind words.

My two cents' worth: Such uncanny timing for your post Paula, because I read it just moments after Gerry and I were talking about that sad feeling of losing a friend to an untimely death, esp. someone with whom you didn't have many common acquaintances to join in your grief. All you can do is work through the sorrow in your own head, hang on to your memories, and let those recollections validate your experience, even if there's no one else to share with. More uncanniness: No sooner had we drawn that conclusion, than guess what song came on the radio (we were in the car, driving home from having breakfast out) ~ "They Can't Take That Away From Me":

There are many, many crazy things
That will keep me loving you,
And with your permission
May I list a few?

The way you wear your hat.
The way you sip your tea.
The memory of all that -
No, no - they can't take that away from me.

The way your smile just beams.
The way you sing off-key.
The way you haunt my dreams.
No, no - they can't take that away from me.

We may never, never meet again
On that bumpy road to love
Still I'll always,
Always keep the memory of...

The way you hold your knife (do-do-do-do do-do).
The way we danced until three.
The way you've changed my life.
No, no - they can't take that away from me.
No, they can't take that away from me.

Written by George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin
Introduced by Fred Astaire in the 1937 film Shall We Dance
Also sung beautifully by Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra,
and many others -- pick your fav!

A New Day

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