Today I'm stealing a page from Girl Wonder Robin's playbook and combining my 'BATTLE OF THE BANDS' ('BOTB') blog bit with a 'THE SOUNDTRACK OF MY LIFE' ('TSOML') blog bit.
If you read my last post then you already know what "The League Of Soul Crusaders" was, what we were about, and you're familiar with the names of the main characters. If you missed it, click HERE.
Well, today's 'BOTB' song is so utterly intertwined with my "Bay Street Daze" that it segues perfectly into Part 2 of 'The League Of Soul Crusaders' series.
In the next segment I'll probably yak about our insanely crazy dog, Mickie. C-R-A-Z-I-E-R than Nappy and Torch, and with more energy, too. (Hard to believe, but true! What an... ANIMAL!)
But this bit's about Twinkie and The Music Machine.
If you thought the nickname "Twinkie" implied that he was some kinda "girlie man" or perhaps even a gayboy ("not that there's anything wrong with that"), you couldn't be more wrong! Twinkie had more girls than any other Soul Crusader (with the possible exception of Torch, but my money's on Twinkie). You'll remember that Twinkie was the very tanned guy hanging out of his bedroom window in that photo where Pooh and I were just waking up on the front lawn.
We were all wild Irishmen (Irish-American) and Twinkie was the sole exception. He liked Journey better'n Springsteen (we pretended not to notice so we wouldn't have to kill 'im). And Twinkie's "wrong" ethnicity was highlighted in his "other" nickname: "The Blonde-Headed Swede". But I hear ya! You wanna know how a girl-catching guy like Twinkie came to be known as "Twinkie". Hang on. We'll get to that, but FIRST, let's yak about 'The Music Machine'...
Alright, it's Los Angeles at the beginning of the 1980s. Obviously there were countless dance clubs throughout the city, but since "Tough Guys Don't Dance", The League Of Soul Crusaders didn't hit a lot of those clubs. We did go to a few, and one I was partial to was 'THE SUNSPOT' right on the Pacific Coast Highway, between Santa Monica and Malibu. They always played 'Footloose' by Kenny Loggins, and that's the ONE song I convinced myself that I could really dance to.
But by far our normal Dance Club hangout was 'THE MUSIC MACHINE' on Pico Boulevard in West L.A. We were actually "regulars" there, and always on our
Amazingly, I was unable to find an old photo of 'THE MUSIC MACHINE' on the Internet. It's long gone, but I can't believe no old-timers haven't posted a photo of it anywhere. Here's the best I could do...
|ALL OF THE YELLOW BUILDING WAS 'THE MUSIC MACHINE'|
I'd love to yak ya the story about the night some girl turned Nappy down for a dance and, drunker'n 'ell, he decided to walk home (about a 2-hour walk!) Maybe I can fit it in somewhere before this part of my 'The Soundtrack Of My Life' series comes to an end.
In my last post I mentioned the fact that The League Of Soul Crusaders developed quite a lexicon of lingo which I referred to as "League Language". Here's one for ya...
|TWINKIE AND NAPPY SIMULTANEOUSLY ASKING, "YOU WANT I SHOULD HIT YOU IN THE WHISKERS?"|
Yep. "You want I should hit you in the whiskers?" was a common expression at the Bay Street house. But we had countless more. Let's examine a slice of "League Language"...
Wanna row-a lib-labs? = "You want me to knock you out?"
Trips = "Problems"
Get some hiths? = "Do you want to go to the store for a pint of Häagen-Dazs ice cream?"
What about my elbow? = "You're not paying enough attention to me."
Ass-whuppin's = "Shooting pool at Jolly Jack's bar."
B.C. = "Breakfast Club" (BEFORE there was a movie with that title!)
Beee! = "Everything's better than alright."
Wha'dja do? = "I didn't hear you. Repeat that."
What with the drinkin' an' all = "It's not really my fault."
A Lynth = "A bad joke."
Woo!-Woo!-Woo!= There's no English translation for this; it's a feeling.
Road Soda = "Beer for the trip"
Mumbly-Peg = Well... never mind. ...We don't talk about THAT in mixed company.
I'll never forget the Halloween party we were invited to (or crashed - what was the difference?) where I was yakking with Nappy, Pooh, and Cranium, too. We're all standing there with beer bottles in our hands and shooting the breeze. And some cute girl dressed as a bumble bee was standing nearby, listening to us yak and utterly fascinated by it. When there was finally a lull in the conversation, this girl, whom none of us knew, asked, "What ARE you guys talking about? And do you REALLY understand each other?!"
And this brings us to "I dropped my wallet" and 'THE MUSIC MACHINE'. In the last blog bit I told you that some of the more adventurous, bolder women found the courage to hang out with us. Some were friends of my Sister and some were friends of a girlfriend of one of us League members. All feminine girls, but a bit more... lively... and trusting. (Like I said before, we were all good guys and no female was safer than when surrounded by The League Of Soul Crusaders, despite appearances and our rowdiness.)
So, one night we we were at 'THE MUSIC MACHINE' and some female friend of a female friend was hanging out with us and trying to drink with us. (Big mistake!) We were all seated at this long table and the girl (whoever she was - lost to history now) lifts the tablecloth and looks underneath. When her head popped up again someone asked, "What were you looking for?"
"I dropped my wallet", she answered.
A few minutes later she looked under the table again, and someone else asked, "What's wrong?"
She replied, "I dropped my wallet again".
Then someone got curious and looked under the table and saw a puddle of vomit underneath it.
And THAT, ladies and gents, is how "I dropped my wallet" was introduced into The League lexicon. It obviously meant "I vomited". League members almost never "dropped their wallets", but the hangers-on who tried to go drink-for-drink with us? Well... they tended to drop their wallets.
'THE MUSIC MACHINE' brought in different bands and DJs, but the Friday and Saturday night house band was 'THE GUMBYS', and they played a mix of contemporary hits and gems from the 1960s. It was just a cover band but they were pretty good and got the crowd dancing.
The very last song 'THE GUMBYS' always played at the end of the night was 'SEALED WITH A KISS'. When you heard that song you knew that 'THE MUSIC MACHINE' was closing for the night and you had to take your drinking elsewhere. No problem. There was this house we knew of called... "Bay Street".
To this day, I cannot hear 'SEALED WITH A KISS' without being immediately transported to 'THE MUSIC MACHINE' circa 1981/'82.
Your job is to vote for your favorite of these two renditions...
'SEALED WITH A KISS' by Bobby Vinton
'SEALED WITH A KISS' by Cliff Richard
Now, how did Twinkie come to be known as "Twinkie"? Well, decades ago I wrote a manuscript for a book tiled... (surprise!) ...'THE LEAGUE OF SOUL CRUSADERS', and the following edited excerpt comes from pages 29 & 30:
We went to the Music Machine in the Popcorn Machine that evening. ... Torch was still in Virginia and Cranium had declined the invitation to join us, so it was just Pooh, Dale, Napoleon and myself at the Machine that night. We had been inside for two hours when we decided to get our hands stamped and go out to the truck for awhile. Dale took beer orders and went to the nearby liquor store while the rest of us engaged in a bit of conversation, uncomfortably seated in the Popcorn Machine.
After what seemed an eternity, Dale came staggering up to the truck - he was already drunk.
"Hey, you guys," he said, "I was just inside that liquor store, you know..."
"Yeah, we know," blurted Pooh.
"...And when I was standing there getting the beers, there were these two bikers and they threw a Twinkie at me."
"They threw a Twinkie at you?"
"Yeah, and I think we should kick their asses!" Dale angrily replied.
"They threw a Twinkie at you and you want to kick their asses?" I asked.
"Yeah... shit, they can't get away with that! ... And when they hit me with the Twinkie I said 'Thank you'."
"You said 'Thank you'?" Napoleon asked.
We were all laughing now because it was so funny and Dale was so drunk.
"Yeah, I said 'Thank you'. What else should I do? I was all alone. Let's kick their asses!"
The fact being that we weren't all that drunk... yet, we decided not to defend Dale's honor, but rather to take up calling him "Twinkie". And so we just sat in the Popcorn Machine, laughing and swallowing our beer, while Twinkie swallowed his pride. ...
"You know," I said to Napoleon on the way back to Bay Street that night, "I think I'd rather have someone throw a brick at me than a Twinkie. I mean, that's humiliating!" Napoleon agreed.
And the humiliation would NEVER end for Dale Anderson, for from then on he became known as "Twinkie".
There are more BATTLES for you to vote on below...
Voice Your Vote @ ‘FAR AWAY SERIES’ by clicking HERE.
@ ‘TOSSING IT OUT’ by clicking HERE.
@ ‘YOUR DAILY DOSE’ by clicking HERE.
@ 'MIKE'S RAMBLINGS' by clicking HERE.
@ 'CURIOUS AS A CATHY' by clicking HERE.
@ 'THE SOUND OF ONE HAND TYPING' by clicking HERE.
@ 'DCRELIEF - BATTLE OF THE BANDS' by clicking HERE.
@ 'THE DOGLADY'S DEN' by clicking HERE.
@ 'CHERDO ON THE FLIPSIDE' by clicking HERE.
@ 'ANGELS BARK' by clicking HERE.
@ 'JINGLE JANGLE JUNGLE' by clicking HERE.
@ 'JANIE JUNEBUG, RIGHTING & EDITING' by clicking HERE.
@ 'J.A. SCOTT' by clicking HERE.
@ 'QUIET LAUGHTER' by clicking HERE.
@ 'REINVINTAGED' by clicking HERE.
@ 'HOLLI'S HOOTS & HOLLERS' by clicking HERE.
@ 'EVIL POP TART' by clicking HERE.
As I've done in the past, I will continue to return to my 'BOTB' blog bits on the 7th and 21st of each month to post my own votes and announce the winners in the comment sections.
My previous blog bits pertaining to 'The Soundtrack Of My Life' (TSOML) can be found by clicking the links below:
TSOML #1 - Prelude To An Introduction
TSOML #2- Introduction
TSOML #3 - First Song: 1959
TSOML #4 - 8th Birthday: 1967
TSOML #5 - Summer: 1974
TSOML #6 - Outlaw: 1978
TSOML #7 - M*A*S*H: Late 1978
TSOML #8 - Innocence Lost: 1980
TSOML #9 - A Friend With A View: 1980
TSOML #10 - The League Of Soul Crusaders: 1981
For more TSOML participants, visit the blog of GIRL WONDER ('Your Daily Dose') by clicking HERE.
~ Stephen T. McCarthy