slam dunk

snow2I said variations of that phrase so many times today it is turning into my new mantra. “It’ll be a slam dunk!” “I thought it would be a slam dunk.” Finally it all just devolved to “slam dunk”. If I look at certain people and merely mouth the words “slam dunk”, they get it. And we all laugh in that way that one does when the alternative is to shed tears, preferably into a beer or something.

I’ll never forget when Big Band Boy and his buddy Pete would traverse the Canadian border up in the Yooperland to play in a jazz band on the Canadian side. At the zoo in Bellevue Park, where I have watched the bears do you-know-what. Or maybe it was Big Band Boy who saw that. I definitely saw a Boiled Iggle there once. Anyway. I can’t exactly remember all of the machinations of assigning parts to various musicians but I *think* that there were times when rather mediocre trombonists were assigned good parts because they were Canadian or maybe simply because they were buddies with the director.

Big Band Boy was anything BUT a mediocre trombonist. By that time (late high school, I think) he was an award-winning musician who had come a long way since the days when he practiced up in his bedroom in our shabby little Superior Street bungalow, shaking the house as he stomped his foot to keep time. And I believe he fainted once. That’s not an uncommon side effect of learning a wind instrument. He became an automotive engineer (cars were a life-long passion for him) but played in an acclaimed college jazz band and kept up with the jazz scene, playing in various groups up until close to his death.

Did Big Band Boy whine and cry about not getting all of those good parts, the ones that would allow him to show off his talents? Naw. He sat up on the bleachers with the biggest sh*t-eatin’-est grin on his face that you have ever seen. Now that I’m thinking about it, maybe I did see it and maybe that’s the same day we saw the bears do the thing. The point was that *he* was having fun *anyway*.

I don’t exactly know how I got on to this old story but I can’t end it without reporting that every time Big Band Boy’s friend Pete drove, customs on one side or the other took his Camaro apart looking for you-know-what. At least that’s what BBB told me. I don’t think I ever rode when Pete drove. I did ride with Pete a few times. We were kind of crush-ish throughout high school but I never knew it then. He was actually a year older than me, aka four years older than BBB. We were in his Camaro in a big old Sault Ste. Siberia snowstorm and there was some rocking involved to get it unstuck from some kind of snow/ice situation. I mean carefully throwing the vee-hickle into forward and reverse, etc., not what you might be thinking. Really really nice guy with a fancy car but in the end, after many crushes and some failed relationships, I met a guy with an ANCIENT purple Gremlin and he was cooking a can when I met him and I still married him. I have just enough info about Pete to know that he has also married well and happily. Which makes me happy.

I was so much older then, I’m younger than that now. Beware, there’s probably an ad…

I agree with Michael Moore. But we’ll see.

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