(Third in a series. Part two, with a link to part one, is here.)
I’ve told the tale at least a couple of times here–about being the first kid on the school bus in the morning starting in the fall of 1970, and how I found myself in the seat under the radio one day. I thought I was going to write about that again this time, but then, memory intervened.
By October 1972, I was in seventh grade–junior high, as we called it then. That meant several things–new teachers, the new seven-period day, the new experience of showers in gym class, and new friends to make, given that several elementary schools fed the lone junior high in our town. And it also meant there were new girls to watch. Not that we had done much watching of the “old” girls. Although I don’t remember ever thinking girls were icky, I do remember that my friends and I didn’t pay much all that much attention to them in grade school. But that changed in seventh grade.
We will call her Moira, because that is not her name. She had all the necessary attributes–short brown hair framing a pretty round face, a body that curved in all the best places and a wardrobe that proved it. From the moment I saw her in math class, I was head-over-heels in like. However, if I had developed a crush on someone from another planet, I’d have had about the same chance I had with Moira. Never mind the gulf between us in terms of social class–the odds of a farm kid dating a doctor’s daughter were astronomical, and if the farm kid wasn’t an athlete, they were impossible. I didn’t realize that, though. My immediate problem was that I knew that even if I lived to be 100, I was never going to work up the courage to talk to her. So I took the only way available to a tongue-tied potential suitor–I let it slip to some of my friends that I liked her, knowing it would get back to her. This worked about as well as you might expect. I suppose I was asking for the sneering, vehement, and very public rejection I got–after all, I’d badly outkicked my coverage–but it did nothing for my confidence with the ladies, and probably contributed to the sorry lack of it that plagued me for years thereafter.
So anyway: Here are five songs from the WLS chart dated October 9, 1972, that bring back the fall of 1972, Moira and all.
“Go All the Way”/Raspberries. Well, this is just what a horny adolescent needed to hear on the radio every 90 minutes. However, it is the greatest record with which to start a radio show, bar none–and I could already do talkovers by the fall of 1972.
“Everybody Plays the Fool”/Main Ingredient. A lesson in love’s reality that was on the radio every 90 minutes, although it didn’t help me one damn bit.
Lovin’ eyes they cannot see
A certain person could never be
Love runs deeper than any ocean
Clouds your mind with emotion
“Black and White”/Three Dog Night. This is another Three Dog Night monument, with a fashionable 1970s brotherhood message and more of their irresistable hooks. More cowbell, indeed.
“Saturday in the Park”/Chicago. From a DJ’s point of view, this has one of the best talkover intros ever, blasting in at 100 percent on your VU meters. For the rest of you, it’s impossible to hear this without remembering the last few carefree days at the end of summer.
“You Wear it Well”/Rod Stewart. Exactly a year after “Maggie May,” Rod did it again, with his band in top form as he delivered a sweetly nostalgic lyric: “So when the sun goes low and you’re home alone/Think of me and try not to laugh.” I’d have settled for that from Moira.
(Technical note: “Everybody Plays the Fool” is a WMA file, not an MP3. Sorry, Mac users. Buy it here.)
Coming next: Tales from the black hole.