Saturday, June 20, 2015

My botched attempt at a summer romance

More from my book, THE ME GENERATION... BY ME (GROWING UP IN THE '60s).   By the way, it's the PERFECT Father's Day Gift.   And now take the Way-Back machine to 1969

I started going out with Rhonda. She lived in Philadelphia and was just out here staying with relatives, one of whom was my friend Jay. Might this be one of those “summer romances” where you meet, fall madly in love, she goes home in September, you’re heartbroken, you remember her always, she forgets you the minute she enters the jetway? But you get laid so she may injure you like no woman ever has but screw it, you got what you wanted.

For date #1, I suggested we see EASY RIDER, a movie that had been getting a lot of buzz. The saga of two hippies (starring Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper) traveling across America had struck a real chord. The ending where rednecks shoot and kill them stunned and startled young audiences. It was the one “You’ve got to see this movie” movie of the summer. But Rhonda had no interest. So we saw her choice instead -- CHITTY-CHITTY BANG BANG starring Dick Van Dyke.

I got a goodnight kiss.

Since I knew that time was of the essence I decided to just pull out the stops for date #2. I offered to take her to Disneyland. That should be good for at least some hands-inside-the-sweater action. She didn’t want to go to Disneyland. She had already been there.

But she did want to go to Japanese Village and Deer Park.

What the fuck?!

L.A. had a number of animal-themed attractions back then. Jungleland was way out in Thousand Oaks. The most bizarre was Lion Country Safari. You’d drive around slowly while jungle animals roamed freely around you. Good idea to keep your windows up so the lions wouldn’t stick their heads in your car and eat your children.

In Buena Park, not far from Disneyland, was Japanese Village and Deer Park. This featured a Japanese-themed tranquil Zen-like atmosphere with gardens and koi ponds, and a tea house, and dove pavilion. Deer were allowed to wander. You can’t believe how crushingly boring this place was.

Another goodnight kiss.

For date #3 I suggested Lion Country Safari figuring I would roll down the window on Rhonda’s side of the car. But she wasn’t interested so there was no date #3.

9 comments:

Oat Willie said...

Thanks to Deer Park, the class never had to know about your "busy hands".

Barefoot Billy Aloha said...

"Where Bambi goes, nothing grows!"

- Emperor Bob Hudson (L.A. DJ and master story teller,) from his routine with Ron Landry that mentions that wacky, fun place, the Japanese Deer Park, in their bit, Ajax Liquor Store.

AlaskaRay said...

You should tell them what happened next. That's why I never fixed you up with another visiting relative.

YEKIMI said...

Ah yes, I remember my grandpa piling us in the car and taking us to Lion Country Safari in Palm Beach County in Florida. Don't think my grandma liked me too much as she kept asking if I wanted to get out and go pet the kitty.

MikeK.Pa. said...

Suggested background music while reading this post.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iu-7DXBiVsA&list=RDiu-7DXBiVsA#t=0

"So we saw her choice instead -- CHITTY-CHITTY BANG BANG starring Dick Van Dyke."
I'm surprised you even got to first base after that choice.

"Since I knew that time was of the essence I decided to just pull out the stops for date #2. I offered to take her to Disneyland."
Disneyland? Were you expecting to see Kevin Arnold and Winnie Cooper there?

Not sure how old you were, Ken, but if it was car-driving age - a drive-in should have been on the radar. If it was bikes, then some out of the way place after stopping off to get Slurpees at the 7-Eleven. Sitting under a tree by a lake, birds chirping, bees buzzing, hormones screaming.

Hope Rhonda doesn't read this and get the satisfaction of knowing the hell she put you through.


Dixon Steele said...

Strange but true: The family that owned Lion Country Safari went into the movie biz in the mid-90s, and I was their head of development/production.

Their partner? None other than Jordon Belfort, the Wolf of Wall Street.

Oh, the stories I could tell...

mmryan314 said...

Ken- So sorry for you. We in Wisconsin who had cottages "up north" got to visit the local dumps where teenagers, with beer, hung out. Bears would swoop in at night and ravage through garbage. Some of my dates actually thought I might enjoy the event and made grand preparations for said events.Needless to say, my dates still live there, I do not. Teenage boys = one thing in mind? I loved your book even though I didn`t quite have the California lifestyle I perceived as so different from mine- maybe it wasn't.

Anonymous said...

"Did you know my car is related to Chitty Chitty Bang Bang? Magic happens when I park it and you touch the magic stick shift."

Paul W. said...

Dixon Steele said...
Strange but true: The family that owned Lion Country Safari went into the movie biz in the mid-90s, and I was their head of development/production.

Their partner? None other than Jordon Belfort, the Wolf of Wall Street.

Oh, the stories I could tell...


No one's asking to hear them.