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i'm gonna miss you

Robyn writes about her earliest childhood memory. Like hers, mine has a soundtrack, as does almost every great memory I have of my childhood.

When I was three, I would spin around the living room in a dizzy dance to The Moody Blues' Go Now.

When I was five and had a terrible cold, my mother put our fuzzy blue blanket out on grass and we laid on our backs, imagining there were castles and princes in the clouds while the radio played Theme From A Summer Place.

Robyn then links to a site for break-up songs.

Summer, 1976. Tony and Gloria had just broken up for the fifteenth time. We were sitting on the steps of the grammar school, in the back by the playground.

We sat there smoking, talking and listening to the tiny transistor radio. Then the song came on.

The deep, husky voice, speaking the words:

This has got to be the saddest day of my life. I called you here today for a bit of bad news. I wonít be able to see you anymore.

After explaining about his obligations, he breaks into song.

I had to meet you here today
Thereís just so many things to say
Please donít stop me till Iím through
This is something I hate to do

Gloria, known in our circles as the drama queen, starts crying. Not the sniffling, chest-heaving cry of the normal junior high breakup. She was bawling. Her cries of despair echoed off the see-saw, bounced into the woods behind the school and carried her anguish to the far reaches of Long Island.

Lori and I exchanged knowing glances. Gloria was part actress, part manipulator. We had know way of knowing whether she was really broken up about the breakup or not.

Many months have passed us by (Iím gonna miss you)
Iím gonna miss you, I canít lie (Iím gonna miss you)
Iíve got ties and so do you
I just think this is the thing to do

Each time the Manhattan's did the hushed "I'm gonna miss you" lyrics, Gloria's cry would reach a fevered crescendo. She stood in the corner of the alcove by the Kindergarten doorway, facing away from us, shoulders heaving.

Maybe you will find, youíll find another guy (Iím gonna miss you)
Letís kiss and say goodbye, pretty baby (Iím gonna miss you)
Please, donít you cry (Iím gonna miss you)
Understand me, wonít you try (Iím gonna miss you)

I stubbed out my cigarette on the blacktop. I walked over to Gloria who, by this time, was a mess of snot and tears. Perhaps she was devastated. Or perhaps she knew that Tony and his crew were right around the corner of the building, playing handball against the first grade wall.

Every time I hear "Kiss and Say Good-bye" it's hot and humid and I'm wearing a silly yellow tube top and cut off denim shorts, smoking a Parliament and secretly wishing that I had someone to pine for.

Comments

Hey, check it out, some guy listed Kiss and Say Goodbye in the comments of Robyn's post about breakup songs.

He must be one cool sum'bitch to have good taste like that, huh? :)

Unless it's Tony. If so, the guy really needs a new schtick.

Oh wait, you're being cheeky.

My memory of the Kindergarten alcove involves a fist fight to the beat of The Scorpions "The Zoo", cranking from Erick's gigantic boom box. Ahhh, memories!

I think I used to hang out with Gloria's younger sister...

Michele, i'm just sitting here laughing my ass off. ahhh, the memories!!!