I heard this song the other day, and it brought back some related memories. It is funny how a song, or phrase or smell can trigger those things, and kind of bring you back home again.
I recall rainy Saturday afternoons, with nothing to do but watch my black and white TV, the old Charlie Chan movies, the old gangster movies of the 30’s and 40’s with George Raft and Pat O’Brien and James Cagney and I could go on. I recall the “Million Dollar Movie” theme on channel 9, and how when I watched for the first time; “Gone With The Wind”, I heard the music, and I expected to go to a commercial!
Of course, there was Ed Sullivan, and Uncle Milty, and the great Hoppalong Cassidy and Gene Autry.
I can still hear the school bell clanging, calling all grades to line up according to class, to march into the building. I remember the church songs and the different homes that all cooked the Sunday meal in a predominately Italian neighborhood, hooking up the aromas of meatballs frying and sauce simmering.
I recall going to the bakery, buying crumb and cheese buns, sometimes a coconut bun or a coffee ring.
I remember my little sisters in their pat and leather shoes with matching pocketbook, and little hats and skinny legs. My new Sunday shoes, worn only to church or school, and they had better not been scuffed. The Sunday comics and Dick Tracey, coming alive Sunday after Sunday in color to liven the story, made Sundays complete.
The old candy stores on the corners, with the newspapers outside, or the fruit and vegetable stands that enticed me to want a peach or plum or big fat banana! Dad sending us out on Sunday night to buy cold cuts, so he could make a fantastic sandwich with mayo and oil and vinegar. His Soda concoctions of vanilla ice cream, cantaloupe melon pieces, cream soda and milk.
There was the sound of the clacking of the overhead el, taking people to business or shopping, or even a ballgame at Ebbets Field.
The old neighborhood had a ball game going whenever school was out, unless it was too cold or snowed. Mom’s old broomstick sawed off the broom and it became a Louisville slugger, handle wrapped in electrical tape and then talcum powder and Spaulding’s that landed on rooftops. If you could hit it two sewers, you could hit.
Then there was the euphoria of the last day of school! The joy, exuberation and sense of freedom, school was over for a few months! That meant endless games of stoop ball, stickball, jump rope and tag. Red light, green light, one-two-three; a game you played for hours! Did I mention roller skating, around the block, and speeds that in my mind were unheard of?
Then, at the end of the day, after buying your ice-cream from the Bungalow Bar man, in the twilights last gleaming, Mom would stick her head out the window and call us all in.