We’re celebrating today at Ray’s Corner. My dad turns 82 today.
You know, of course, that Dad’s apartment is the one with the loud music.
That’s where the martinis are made of gin with the vermouth bottle held about a foot away.
Don’t forget two or three olives, either. Always wise to have a little something to eat if you’re drinking.
Dad was in high school when World War II broke out, but he couldn’t get into the service because of a hearing loss. Then they started taking everyone with a pulse. He went to Arkansas for infantry training, ostensibly as part of the Japanese invasion force, “but then Harry dropped the big one.”
The war over, Dad instead went to Germany as an Army clerk and supply sergeant. He got spun off from one unit to another and wound up in the port district of Bremerhaven, sort of a one-man unit.
So, what did you do in the war, Dad?
“Oh, I ran a GI club in a little town called Vegesack.”
Yes, my dad made sure they had enough beer and Coke and kept the jukebox going.
Perhaps these swinging tunes were on that GI club’s jukebox in 1946.
“Knock Me A Kiss,” Louis Jordan, 1941.
“Caldonia,” Louis Jordan, 1945.
Both of these cuts are from “The Best of Louis Jordan,” which came out on vinyl in 1977, then on CD in 1989.