Friday, December 19, 2014

The Night I Sang To Mary Travers

I have managed to find some of my posts from my previous blog.  From time to time I will publish one or two of the old posts which I like, or which still have relevance.  There's no particular sequence here.  I'm just diving into the previous collection and seeing what's there.  Here's the first post I came up with:

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Yesterday I read that Mary Travers of the singing group, Peter, Paul, & Mary, had died at the age of 72.

Back in the days when I drove a taxicab in Manhattan, I once picked up a nice older lady and a young woman. As I drove them home, we chatted a bit. The older lady told me her name was Jessie van Arnstein. If I recall correctly, she told me she was related to Nick van Arnstein who had broken the heart of Barbara Streisand in "Funny Girl," (though Jessie was talking about Fannie Brice in real life.) But maybe that's just the effect of time filling in memory loss for me.

Jessie told me that she and her friend Mary had just been to see the musical "Hair," in which her nephew or grandson, or niece or granddaughter or whatever, had been performing. We talked about "Hair," and somehow I mentioned that I wrote music myself; and I ended up singing one of my songs to Jessie and Mary.

When we reached our destination, Jessie gave me her phone number and told me to keep in touch with her. Then she pointed up toward a building window and said, "That's Mary's platinum album hanging on the wall by the lamp."

I looked up at the window, and I saw the platinum album. Then I glanced into my rear-view mirror, and for the first time it dawned on me that the younger woman in my taxicab was Mary Travers.

"Mary lives here," Jessie said, "and I live directly across the street." And Jessie and Mary got out of my cab.

I kept Jessie's phone number for a while, but I never did phone her.

I wonder if Mary liked my song?

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