Oh, please don't think you're going to read lusty porn on this blog entry. I've just been into Elvis lately, & I couldn't resist. You may have noticed that usually name my blog entries with song lyrics, and I use all genres. Like I said, I've been into Elvis a lot lately. Is it just me, or is there something about him on TV every day?
Now Elvis is like Dale Earnhardt - you either love him or you hate him. But not unlike fans of the Intimidator, fans of Elvis recognize his shortcomings.
I know. Some Ironhead fans are out there saying, "What shortcomings?" You know what I mean. Bear with me.
Randy & I discovered very early on in our relationship that Elvis made a big impression on us growing up, and that even though we can laugh at some of the silly things you hear about him eating peanut butter & banana sandwiches, his drug use & love of karate, etc., we also can appreciate the contribution he made to music and our culture. And to our lives as well.
Randy is thirty-seven days older than me. Six days before I was born, Elvis married Priscilla. (Yes, I know how old that makes me. Believe me, I know.) When we were little, he was everywhere then too. One of the local TV stations, WLAC (now WTVF) aired movies every day at 3:30 on "The Big Show." They had John Wayne Week, Monster Week, and best of all Elvis Week. I guess that's where I saw all of the Elvis movies, though I really only remember "Blue Hawaii," "Speedway," and "Frankie and Johnny."
I know. Someone is reading this thinking, "OF COURSE she remembers "Speedway."" OF COURSE! Fast cars, good looking singing driver...what's not to like??? And yes, DAYTONA is this weekend!!! Here's a link to Larry Woody's latest story about MY FAVORITE DRIVER Sterling Marlin.
For anyone who has any interest at all in more about WLAC, check out this old picture. The link says it was taken in 1970, which looks about right judging by my memory (I was 3 at the time). The man on the left is John Lashlee, the sports guy, and second from left is Bob Lobertini (and I guarantee you anyone who lived in Nashville between 1965 and 1975 will remember him) who did the weather. The guy on the far right, Chris Clark, STILL works at Channel 5. I have no idea how old he is - probably a lot older than he looks. And I understand that Huell Howser is nationally famous now. Like Pat Sajak, Oprah Winfrey, & John Tesh, he was a Nashville TV personality first. You can see a photo of Pat & John back in the day, as well as Huell, here. And the guy next to John Tesh is still at WSMV. He left for awhile, but he's been back for a long time.
Enough of Nashville trivia. Back to Elvis. When I was four I remember seeing Elvis in concert on TV & going totally crazy screaming & dancing in the living room. My mom liked him but I don't think she was that nuts about him. I remember thinking then that he was the best looking man on earth. And now, Rachel says, "He was a beautiful man." This was in the very early 70's when Elvis was in his late 30's and not overweight and (not as) drugged up as he was at the end. I used to spend Friday nights at my aunt's house, & I would hug the pillow & pretend it was Elvis (of course, my fantasies were pretty innocent - I'd imagine him kissing my cheek from the stage, or better yet, throwing me his cape). She didn't sleep with a pillow (must've come from sharing a bed with all those brothers & sisters she had) so she would put hers on my bed. On the night Elvis died, when I was 10, I was staying at her house. I remembered the reason the pillow was there. I laid the pillow at the end of the bed, and she never put it there for me to sleep with again. Not a word was said about this, ever. Of course, I probably hadn't pretended the pillow was Elvis since I was four.
Randy recorded "This is Elvis" a few weeks ago & I guess I've watched it 10 times. Maybe it is morbid, but I like to watch the funeral procession, with "American Trilogy" playing behind. All those white cars, Cadillacs & Fords...all the people lined up on the street...even though we've had 20 degree days lately, I can still feel the thick, hot August air when I watch that footage. Then they show the mausoleum, and it kind of reminds me of those summer afternoons when I'd go inside & watch "Emergency!" & I wonder how much impact that show had on my choice of career. Then they show him on the stage at around the time I was dreaming about him, and I can surely see why I thought he was amazing - because he was.
Did I think the life of a Cheatham County Rock Star's Wife would be like living in Graceland? Maybe a little. We had a friend in college who used to ask me if I'd want to be married to a rock star (I guess he saw great potential in Randy) & I thought, yeah, furs, rings, that'd be cool. Now get this. Our friend bore a slight resemblance to Elvis. He was adopted, and was born in Memphis. His mom used to tell him, "You know, you kind of look like Elvis..." I have to admit, I've always wondered, because the resemblance is real. He's only 3 months younger than Lisa Marie...but hey, that didn't stop Elvis, from what I've heard. I could do without that part of being married to a rock star. And Randy doesn't give me any reason to doubt him. Wait, that's another line from an Elvis song. See what I mean? He's everywhere.
Thank you. Thank you very much.