Rusty Haggard Blog

Hey Nineteen!

Songs again. And this time it’s Steely Dan that I can’t get out of my head. “Hey Nineteen.” And for me that’s like 19, as in 19 degrees! That’s what it is this morning. And so the weather is still dominating everyone’s minds around here. And there goes Steely Dan again: “Way back in ’67…”

And way back in ’67 I wasn’t thinking about the weather. I was thinking that I was having a nervous breakdown. Over my high school girlfriend! I was about to lose my mind over (here comes another song)… “My girl, my girl, my girl. Talking ‘bout My Girl!” Oh, the pain she put me through. Breaking up with me to date another guy, and a sophomore at that! And we were seniors! Imagine my surprise years later at a class reunion when I learned that she had made a bet with her girlfriends that she could go with me the whole senior year! It was a bet she made. Something for her girlfriends to watch from a distance. Something for them to snicker about as she dangled me on a string.

“No, we can’t dance together.” She wasn’t at that reunion. Or any other reunion. And when I found out about the bet she made, I was of course no longer 18. No longer in angst, an angst at 18 that had me tossing and turning, staying up all night, driving by her house at 3 a.m. Can I laugh about it now?

“The Cuervo Gold. The fine Colombian.” Steely Dan sings on. There are things that can ease one’s mind in times of angst. Relax, I say to myself. Get comfortable. And Steely Dan sings on. “Hey Nineteen!”

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