Thursday, January 7, 2010

World War-I Parody

Happy New Year!

If you have been wondering why I have not blogged for almost a month, the answer is simply that I have been preparing for the holidays and the new year. What used to take me a few minutes to accomplish, now takes me an hour. My Mother used to say that whatever was the appearance of your house on the last day of the year, THAT would be it for the next year. So true to tradition, I have been clearing out drawers, closets, cabinets and my files. The job is not complete, but it will have to do for the time being.

Several weeks ago, I awoke in the middle of the night from a dream, in which..............

I was sitting on a bench in front of our grocery store with my sister Rose, when we saw our cousin Connie strolling down the street towards us, and happily singing a song. Connie was about 17 years old and I about 13. In those far off days (about 1923), the Facts of Life were grnerally acquired outside of the home, and Connie usually prided herself on being the informant of carnal knowledge to the innocent adoloscent girls on Atlantic Avenue. In the dream, Connie joined us and proceeded to teach us the words of the song, although Rose and I had no idea what the words meant. We kept singing the song over and over again, when suddenly....I awoke from the dream. I turned on the light and immediately started to jot down the words on a note pad. But just to show you how the mind works.....awake, I could recall only a few scattered words and lines. Back to sleep....and miraculously, I flowed into the same dream....Connie was still there...and we continued to sing. Fully awake in the morning, I kept humming the melody....and every once-in-a while, several words or lines would be revealed. After several days of humming, I was able to recall all of the words to the song. For the past 75 years, I don't ever recall hearing those words before. Why! I do not know and I have been pondering ever since. Perhaps its because the news today dwells on war topics and the endurance of our brave soldiers, I am completely ignorant of the mechanics of The Brain, but somehow I believe the news I read today has triggered the memories of previous wars. For instance, for many years after World War-I, the Government maintained the Brooklyn Navy Yard ....and on any day, you would see many sailors walk the streets of Brooklyn , with their bell-bottom pants flouncing in the breeze. It was a beautiful sight to see!

Christmas was celebrated at my daughter"s house...and after a sumptuous dinner, we sat around and talked. I recanted all of the above facts, and all those present (including my three adult grandchildren with impeccable reputations) insisted I sing the song, even though I thought it was risque. After my rather raspy melody, there was lots of chuckling and laughter; the comments were "BLOG it, Grandma; it shows how life was lived in your morality was viewed in those days....what a difference from today". So here it is:

When I was young and foolish, it was my heart's delight
To go to balls and dances, and stay out late at night
It was at a ball I met him, and he asked me for a dance
I knew he was a sailor by looking down at his pants
His shoes were brightly polished, his hair was neatly combed
I danced with him all evening, and then he begged me home
It was in my Father's hallway where I was led astray
It was in my Father's hallway where I was forced to lay
Now girls, now girls, take warning
Now girls take warning from me
Never let a sailor get an inch above your knees
For he will say he loves you
And he'll swear that it is true
But when he gets just what he wants
He'll say...To hell with you.

Then I was asked if I remembered other songs or parodies depicting morality during the 1920's and 1930's.....and here is one:

You're the kind of a girl that men forget,
Just a toy to enjoy for a while
For when men settle down, they always get
An old-fashion girl, with an old-fashion smile
And you'll soon realize, you're not so wise
When the years will bring you tears of regret
And when they play...Here Comes the Bride
You'll stand outside
Just a girl that men forget.

Yes, things have changed!......and I think it all began, when women who worked in War Plants during World War-II, were required to wear pants for protective purposes. However, when the war ended and the heroes returned home, the women forgot to take the pants off. Which reminds me of an incident, just a short time ago, at a social gathering of local women; soneone turned to me and said: "Elvira, I dont recall ever seeing you in a pant-suit. How come?" I was taken by surprise, and since I didn't want to offend anyone, I replied: "Well, let's put it this way! See that door! If a beautiful woman, dressed in a very stylish pant-suit came through it, I'm sure you would all look and say Georgeous! Wonderful!. But, if a handsome man wearing a lovely dress entered, what would be your re-action?" No one offered a response.

Until next time......Good Night.


  1. Elvira

    Yet another marvellous post, well worth waiting for.

    A very happy new year to you and yours. Looking forward to reading much more in 2010.

  2. Elvira, you're the most talented 99 year old blogger I know, as well as the best pudding-maker I know! My granny (Carol) said you'd be embarrassed if I read this story but I thought that whole part about you slowly remembering words from a song that you hadn't sang in 75 years is absolutely incredible! Keep up your writing, I'll be on your site checking up for more of your pieces! -Flynn