On the jukebox, Roy Orbison was singing “Only The Lonely.” Jerry Lee Lewis was singing about shaking, Ricky Nelson was singing “Traveling Man,” and fans were still playing Buddy Holly’s “Peggy Sue.” I was walking around singing, “Patricia Sue, I love you.” I didn’t know that Patricia’s middle name was really, “Lou,” but I didn’t care because the name that I sang fit the music to “Peggy Sue.”
A couple of days after work, I drove out northeast of town to the nightclub. I just wanted to see how long it would take me to get there once that I knew that she would be there at the club. I found out when the club would open, and I found out when the club would close. I really didn’t care who would be performing there. I just wanted to see her again and to dance with her.
Friday afternoon came. I was all thumbs and left hands. I did manage to lay the courses of brick in a straight line and properly mortared. I don’t know how I managed to do that, but I got the job done. I walked in a daze to my car. I put my tools in the trunk of my car, and I drove to my apartment. I stopped, on automatic, at all of the stop lights and stop signs. It was like my mind was on cruise control. If the road to my apartment had been under construction since I had driven it that morning, I probably would have run into the sign that told me to detour. That is how out of it I really was.
I showered, changed clothes, and put on my dancing shoes. I think I ate supper that afternoon, I’m not really sure. I just knew that I had to make a really good impression on Patricia. The hour neared for the club to open, and I bolted out of the front door, grabbed the door handle to my car door and jumped inside. After I backed out of the parking lot, I wouldn’t say that I roared a way, but if anything had gotten in my way, I probably would have run over it without even knowing it. I got there just as the doors were opening. I walked inside and saw that the band was setting up for their performance.
I saw that Patricia was there also. I guessed that she must have known someone in the band who might have given her a lift to the club. A number of people, young like me, were walking around the inside of the club. Some were standing by the jukebox and doing the bop by themselves. I believed that I needed to establish my dominance for the evening with Patricia. I rolled up my sleeves so that my biceps would bulge. And I walked around with my biceps flexed him and told each of the men there that Patricia was my date for the evening, and that they should stay away from her and find someone else to dance with.
It worked because no one that I talked to came near Patricia. A couple of guys who weren’t there at the beginning came in late. I kept my eyes alert for new arrivals, and as I saw them coming toward Patricia, I turned to face him and merely waggled my forefinger back and forth. They got my message, loud and clear.
I had her all to myself all evening long. We danced, and we talked. I mean I talked to her more than I had ever talked to anyone other than my mother. I told her what my plans were and what I wanted to do. She seemed impressed with my long-term plan for my life. She told me about her life, and a lot about Buddy’s life, and what her plans were. I learned that she was really smart. She impressed me. I was surprised about one thing. She told me she had been married once before, and after giving birth to two boys and two girls, her husband had left her for another woman. I asked, “Do you mean that he left four little kids behind?”
She nodded. “Yes, he just walked away!”
I growled, “I think that is the most despicable thing in the world, leaving little kids. He needs to be shot!”
We continued to meet like that for several months. We got to know each other pretty good during that time. I was given an incredible opportunity when she introduced me before the children. They were so cute and so innocent. I couldn’t bear the thought that they would have no father. Then, one day, I decided what I needed to do. I took some time and went...