Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Me and Buzz and King Kong

It was just after Buzz’s Pa ran away with that exotic dancer that the movies first came to town.

Buzz’s Ma told everyone that her missin’ husband was working somewhere ‘down south’ and if you tried to get more information from her, she’d change the subject to how many kids have things crawling in their hair, these days.

It kinda always worked, ‘cause every time she started that topic, people would just nod and start to wonder if there was an outbreak of head lice in this part of the county.

Anyhoo, Buzz’s Pa aside - like I was tellin’ you - the movies hit town for the first time ever, and me and Buzz were like two kids in a candy store. Actually we were two kids.

Now here’s where the problem started. Buzz went to the town hall to buy the tickets for me and him, for the following Saturday – when the movies would be shown.

It was gonna be ‘King Kong’ with someone called Fay Wray or somethin’ like that.

"Can’t do it, kid,” the woman told my bestest pal in the world. “More than my job’s worth. You’re too young. King Kong is only fur the grownups.”

I kid you not, that was what she told Buzz – he swore it on a blood oath, and I knew he wasn’t kiddin’. ‘Cause he does sometimes. That’s just the way it is, with bestest pals.

I told Buzz I wanted to see ‘King Kong’ and so did he, so me and Buzz had to work out a way to see the first movie ever in our town.

Then Buzz came up with the bestest idea ever in the history of bestest ideas. When I think on it, it might have been his only idea ever. Anyhoo, he was gonna get a coat that had belonged to his big Aunt Mamie.

She was the tallest woman in the county and she never married. Buzz's Ma said it was because she never met a man who was up to her eye-level. She was skinny and tall and looked down on everyone.

Buzz told me about the night she came to stay when Buzz’s Ma went south to try and find her missing husband. 

“Aunt Mamie was gonna be in charge and that was that,” said Buzz's Ma.

Yet that night, there was a storm over One-Eyed Creek which caused the power to break and in the dark, Big Aunt Mamie hit her head on the top of the door, and me and Buzz found her flat out, unconscious the next morning. I kid you not.

She was just lying there with the biggest coat on, you ever did see. Aunt Mamie left after the weekend, but somehow the coat never followed her. We used to use it as a wigwam when we were playin’ cowboys and injuns.

But now Buzz thought it could be used for a better purpose.

“I stand on your shoulders, and then I put the coat around us and we’ll look like grown-ups,” said Buzz.

I thought it was the bestest idea ever and Buzz used one of his Ma’s old wigs to make a beard.

We practised walking – gotta say it wasn’t a real good try but somehow we managed to stay upright. I said maybe I should try standing on Buzz’s shoulders but he said I looked too young for the job. Can I remind you again, we were both kids.

So there’s me and Buzz and Aunt Mamie’s coat heading to the town hall to buy two tickets for King Kong. The woman in the ticket office didn’t look up as Buzz used his real deep voice. And she was about to hand over the tickets when I kinda stupid like passed the money out through the coat instead of handin’ it to Buzz.

“Never seen someone with an arm growin’ down there,” said the ticket lady. And that was when Buzz fell off my shoulders and we both landed on the ground.

“Git, before I call your folks,” said the lady.

As we ran away, Buzz shouted that you’d need to catch his Pa first, ‘cause he’d run off with an exotic dancer.

Me and Buzz weren’t too sure what an exotic dancer was but it sounded exciting.

Anyhoo, when the night came to show ‘King Kong’ we found that if we sat on the church roof across Main Street we could see the whole movie. Trouble was we couldn’t hear anything, so me and Buzz made the story up about how a big monkey can get on the roof of a building.

I saw the real King Kong a few years later and the story wasn’t half as good as mine and Buzz’s. 

bobby stevenson 2015


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