Monday, October 18, 2010

Nineteen Again

I wrote this in an email to my friend Christine and I hope she doesn't mind me sharing it with the blogsphere.
First about my friend Christine. We met when we were both in the cast of an American Airlines touring show. Both in college, excited to be getting paid to tour around the county singing and doing ventriloquism. It was a great summer and our friendship has endured for the decades since. She is also good friends with Sandi- don't go there.
So with that back story here it is. I will only use first names and I will call myself Jay.
There are two worlds on a ship. The guest entertainers called "fly ons" because we come and go, and the cast of the production shows who are crew and sign much longer contracts. The two worlds don't mix much. We share the stage at different times and live in different sections of the ship. Plus they are younger with more energy and stronger livers.
The cruise director needed me to fill a few minutes in the Welcome Aboard show, and asked me to perform. It is not something I usually have to do but they were stuck. This meant for a night my world would intersect with the young singers and dancers on stage.
One of the singers caught my attention, which is odd. Being married to a dancer it is usually the dancers that catch my eye. But as I watched her I realized what it was about her that was so compelling. (don't go there either). She was a double for my friend Christine. She had the same beautiful grey eyes, same voice and same way of moving on stage. It was like watching Christine *¤/$¥&€ years ago.
I immediately wrote Christine to tell her of her clone/ Doppleganger. Christine wrote back to ask if she could "tie a cherry stem in a knot with her tongue". I responded by saying I didn't know and had zero chance of ever finding out.
Back stage there was a list of the performers full names. I noticed that this singer's middle name was POODLE. It registered as an interesting choice for a mother to pick for a daughters name.
Later I ran into some of the production show cast at the crew bar. They were partying in a way that recalled my own youth. The Christine clone was there as well and her resemblance to my friend was remarkable even off stage.
I walked up to her and said, "Poodle. That is a very interesting middle name. Is there a story behind that?" She looked at me with Christine's eyes and said, "It's Poole. A family name." Damn my dyslexia it always betrays me at the worst times. I quickly dawned my Harry Potter cloak of invisibility and scurried to my cabin cell.
Here I was thinking I was Sean Connery when all the time I was really Mickey Rooney.
As you were,

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