Did You Ever Go Sailing? S-A-I-L-I-N-G? Sail, Sailing, A Boat?

I find it impossible to believe that I’ve had this blog for a few months now and didn’t think to post a rather incredible piece of cassette tape.

I had a friend named Richard. Richard had a grandfather that occasionally came through town. Richard’s grandfather enjoyed the company of younger people, which was basically everybody. He also enjoyed gin. He also enjoyed talking. He was also quite hard of hearing. One night, I suddenly realized that I should be capturing the unique confluence of these four things. Only one problem: I didn’t have a recorder.

And so I issued strict orders for everybody to stop talking until I returned. I ran to my car, sped home, and gathered up my Norelco cassette recorder, which was, at that time, the only brand of cassette recorder… the only model of cassette recorder there was in the world. (According to an expert, that dates this recording as 1965 or ‘66).

I put the microphone on the TV table where the now-considerably-emptier bottle of gin resided. I pushed the record interlock button and moved the all-in-one play/record/fast forward/rewind lever up, toward the speaker. (Since I could drive a stick shift, I quickly mastered the Norelco Carry-Corder 150).

What I got, for my trouble, was… well… a rather intriguing, somewhat melancholy monologue about mankind’s relationship to the sea.

First, Richard tries to get a question through to his grandfather.
Then, a message passed from generation to generation, with somewhat salty language, as is only appropriate.

The next time you’re at an animation festival watching one of those vintage UPA Mr. Magoo shorts, casually turn to the person sitting next to you and say, “You know, they based that character on a real guy.”

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