When I sit alone amidst everything now defaulted to physical legacy casting lingering melancholy upon endless hours of silence some old musical comedy from the fifties brings back that former time when life in general seemed more vital and alive. That crooning tenor of baritone revives my spirits from the cold cradle of potter’s field back up into first class in a cruising 707. A dry Gibson martini on the tray table with “Ol’ Blue Eyes” a few seats up ahead sipping Jack over ice. With my eyes closed my normally lyric addled brain no longer inhibits my accompanying lip-sync of words that have all my life been imprinted within. When I was young I sometimes had difficulty distinguishing my father from this chairman of the board. It was not any wonder as for most of his adult life, Frank was my father’s idol and personal role model. He was hip and ‘with it’ and happy as much as any young man in the prime of his life recovering from the childhood trauma of the Great Depression and the crescendo of the conclusion of war in the Pacific. A self-made man meeting a self-motivated hometown girl could have equally been the epiphany of any of the movies of that era equally as much as it summed up the experience of my mother and father’s connection. Rocky and hard to figure sometimes but always swinging to the beat of the music.
My own perspectives of desirable femmes equally rocked by serene sirens of their spiritually attentive devotion in Kim Novak, Rita Hayworth and Ava Garner. Frank may have briefly had Ava but my father ended up keeping the faith over the long haul with my mother. Who after all was the luckier of the two of them? Perhaps, I too could have been luckier if in that adolescent guise of manhood called rebelliousness, I would have had more courage to pick a girl more like one of them? Someone that you could dream about instead of just quickly make it with to keep up with a tedious schedule of ‘free love’ and exploration of one’s ‘self’. What after all these years have I found but what I started out with in a most times joyful bond of my parent’s world that now seems like gold to the tarnish of my own so forgettable exploits of empty self-discovery?
The magic in “the Voice” turning the cold sensibilities of contemporary cartoon logic into lofty romance once again extinguishing that fatalistic cynicism into that smooth sentiment of love and romance and a small hotel. Frank and my father were ever great pals to everyone and anyone with a brash sensibility of getting to know strangers and magically making them friends with a few good lines. The spirit of that time melting my iceberg within into tiny ice cubes freshening my drink. Not lost to me like some failing spark in this now somber setting but a still fiery hearth that still warms me through the long nights of permanent absence. Living in the past perhaps? But those times still burn bright within in a way that reasonable modern logic cannot defile. Something that , “no, no, they can’t take that away from me!”